Archive for January, 2015

Investigating possible arson

By Vincent Marshall
Dodge City Daily Globe – January 7, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Click on photo to view full-size image.

On Tuesday the Dodge City Fire Department responded to an apartment fire at 1318 Bristol Avenue that may have been deliberately set.

“We are investigating a possible arson,” Fire Captain Ken Spencer said. “That is all the information we have at this time.”

Prior to the fire, police were searching for an individual in the same location for an unknown circumstance. A fire then broke out in one of the apartments.

“One of the officers on scene got to the fire with a fire extinguisher,” Police Chief Craig Mellecker said. “He was able to contain it from getting worse as the fire department arrived.”

As the fire was being put out, other officers on scene did make an arrest.

“We do have a person in custody,” Mellecker said. “The subject was apprehended for various violations that were allegedly committed.

“We cannot release the person’s information pending further investigation from the fire department as well as our own.”

Fire call

Harvey County Independent – January 8, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

halstead fire 1302015

A structure fire in the 300 block of Poplar in Halstead created flames and a lot of smoke Monday before the Halstead Fire Department arrived and took care of things. The cause of the fire was unknown at the time and no one was injured.

Heat lamp blamed for rural house fire

Independence Daily Reporter – January 8, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

An electric heat lamp used to keep pipes from freezing is apparently to blame for a small structure fire at the Caleb Nichols residence, 3592 County Road 3600, that occurred at 4:43 p.m. Wednesday.

Bill Caflisch, the fire director of the Independence Division of the Montgomery County Rural Fire District No. 1, said a small area of the floor frame was smoking when firefighters arrived at the residence.

He said an electric heat lamp being used to keep pipes from freezing was the culprit and warned people to use extreme caution when thawing pipes or using space heaters to keep warm.

He said firefighters were forced to crawl under the house in order to put out the blaze.

He said the fire caused approximately $500 damage.

Car strikes four high school students in KCK

By Tony Rizzo
Kansas City Star – January 30, 2015

Photo by David Eulitt.

Photo by David Eulitt.

A vehicle struck four high school students about 2:35 p.m. Friday near a community center in Kansas City, Kan.

Ambulance crews reported that at least one of the students sustained critical injuries. The others sustained serious injuries. All four were taken to hospitals.

The students were standing on the north side of Troup Avenue when an eastbound vehicle crested a hill and hit them before veering into a yard and coming to rest near a fence, police said. The driver stayed at the scene.

It was unclear whether the students had been standing on the road or near it.

The incident happened near the Breidenthal Youth and Family Center in the 1200 block of Troup Avenue.

New fire chief gives report

By Rudy Taylor
Montgomery County Chronicle – January 8, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Caney’s new fire chief, Tom Jones, was introduced at Monday’s Caney City Council, and he gave information about himself and the fire department.

Jones said he had been a Caney volunteer firefighter for 28 years and had lived in Caney since 1972. He graduated from Caney Valley High School in 1971. He and his wife, Brenda, have two children and two grandchildren.

Jones gave a year-end report to the council which indicated that the department currently has 16 firefighters and five auxiliary members.

The department went on 106 runs during 2014 including: 25 accidents with injuries; 20 EMS assists; 6 vehicle fires; 30 mutual aid calls; 4 grass fires; 1 accident with no injuries; 3 gas leaks; 3 structure fires, 6 mutual aid structure fires, 2 power lines, 1 search, 3 alarms and 2 storm watches.

Fire department to sell 1976-era truck

By Donna Celaya
Montgomery County Chronicle – January 8, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

cherryvale fire 1302015

The grand old lady of the fleet is being put out to pasture.

The Cherryvale Fire and Rescue Department received the Cherryvale City Council’s permission on Monday to sell its oldest rescue truck, a fully equipped 1976 Chevy Cheyenne C65 SWAB rescue vehicle.

Chief Jesse Reed said the truck is still a good one, with a generator, air cascade and double wenches with grapple hooks. On the downside, it seems to have a wiring issue that causes batteries to lose power every six months or so. It’s probably something that can be fixed by the right person, but it has plagued the CFR, leading to the truck being parked for most of the last couple of years, Reed said.

The chief received the council’s permission to sell the truck, either as a complete unit, or pieced out, whichever brings the highest price. Council directed Reed to check with the other city departments to see if they need any of the equipment.

Reed also presented his monthly report to the council on Monday. He said December was a slow month for the department, which answered two fire calls–one a structure fire and the other a stove fire.

The crew also handled 41 emergency medical calls involving 38 individuals, with 24 transports, 13 patient refusals and four other, such as no patient found, call canceled, or patient found dead at the scene.

The highest percentage of dispatches for the EMS unit were six falls, four chest pain, and three each: altered metal status, sick, and medical transport.

EMS responded within one minute of receiving the dispatch call 83 percent of the time, and within three minutes 90 percent of the time.

Councilor Kevin Crane asked Reed why it takes three minutes to get a crew out the door, when there are two people stationed at the fire house on each shift.

Reed said he understood the concern, and he would look into the circumstances. The department’s goal, he said, is to take as little time as possible to get crews out the door and on the scene to help people.

They arrived on the scene within five minutes 83 percent of the time, and within 10 minutes on every call. Eleven of the 41 calls were in the county, outside the city limits.

Reed said his department is working with Independence Fire Department in seeding a grant for new air and breathing packs and related equipment. The fire department’s long-range goals in the council’s equipment reserve plan also include obtaining a new ambulance in the next couple of years, valued at $37,100.

Fire damages local home on New Year’s Day

By Donna Celaya
Montgomery County Chronicle – January 8, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Click on photo to view full-size image.

A local house fire that started in the vicinity of a woodburning stove on January 1 caused what the fire chief is describing, as “significant damage.”

The home at 616 E. Third was not declared a total loss, but did take on major damage. The occupants of the home were able to escape without injury.

Jesse Reed, Fire-Rescue Chief, said the local fire department was on a call at the scene of an accident at the junction of highways 169 and 400 north of Cherryvale on New Year’s Day when they received a call at about 3 p.m. to respond to a structure fire.

The owner of the residence at 616 E. Third made the 911 call, Reed said.

According to courthouse records, the property is owned by Henry and Sherry Jones.

“Our ambulance was on another call, so we got assistance from Independence EMS and from Cherryvale Rural Fire Department,” he said. “They followed us to the scene. When we arrived at the scene, all of the residents were outside the house except for the family’s bird. The bird was rescued by a member of Independence EMS.”

Reed said the home was insured and there were no injuries, although the structure sustained considerable smoke and fire damage. He said it is uncertain the exact cause of the blaze, but he is certain it started near a woodburning stove.

Scrap metal fire controlled

By Kelton Brooks
Hutchinson News – January 30, 2015

The Hutchinson Fire Department doused a scrap metal fire that was called in by a passing train on the Santa Fe railroad early Friday morning.

The HFD Gold Crew led by Battalion Chief William Lang responded to the 3000 block of East Avenue G at 12:10 a.m. for an unknown fire.

Fire Chief Kim Forbes said firefighters responded to Hutchinson Iron and Metal and spotted a 30-foot high, 30-foot wide and 15-foot high pile of scarp material with visible flames and smoke.

The fire was controlled in an hour. Forbes said a “front-end loader” was requested from the property owner to spread out the large pile of scrap material to get into the middle of the pile that still was smoldering. The cause of the fire appeared to be accidental from a hot ember.

Forbes said it was likely the ember was started by protective oil on the metal that got too hot or friction from the cutting the metal.

No one was injured in the fire. Three units responded to the fire.

Small fires reported

By Susan Thacker
Great Bend Tribune – January 30, 2015

The Great Bend Fire Department responded two small structure fires, one Wednesday and one Thursday, each resulting in about $500 damage.

On Wednesday at 6:38 p.m., units responded to 1317 Hubbard St. where light smoke was showing from single-car garage with painted wood siding. Chief Mike Napolitano said the homeowner was on scene with a garden hose spaying water on to several trash bags and a plastic trash can full of leaves and grass on the south side of the garage. He said he had thrown a cigarette into the trash can earlier and thought it was out. He found the side of his garage burning and extinguished it before firefighters arrived.

At 10:53 a.m. Thursday, firefighters were dispatched to 623 Centre St. in Pawnee Rock. They arrived to see light smoke coming from underneath a mobile home, behind the front metal steps that were used to enter the front door.
“The fire had been extinguished by a dry powder extinguisher used by a neighbor,” Napolitano said.
There was still a light smoke haze inside the trailer, so ventilation fans were set up to remove the smoke. The majority of fire damage was to the outside metal skirt and underside of the trailer by the front door.

GBFD was also dispatched to 5525 Eisenhower in Great Bend at 8:43 a.m. Thursday, to check on a smoke smell. The homeowner showed firefighters to the basement, where they could smell something in the west end of a mechanical room. A thermal imager showed nothing hot; there was no fire, but it was determined that the heating and air unit needed some maintenance.

Firefighters also had eight ambulance calls on Wednesday and seven on Thursday.

House Fire Strikes NE Madison Site

By Greg Palmer
Topeka Capital Journal – January 30, 2015

An early morning blaze kept Topeka fire crews busy for a couple of hours early Friday morning.

Shawnee County Dispatch says that the fire was reported just before 1 a.m. at 1215 Northeast Madison.

Fire crews worked quickly and had it under control about 30 minutes later.

They say everyone made it out safely and there were no injuries.

Fire crews cleared the scene around 2:25 a.m.

Caney volunteer firefighter dies while responding to grass fire

caney fire 2015

Caney Volunteer Firefighter Cliff Sanders, age 55, passed away early Thursday morning, January 29, after having collapsed at the Caney Fire Station while responding to a page for a grass fire Wednesday afternoon. Sanders was first transported to Jane Phillips Hospital in Bartlesville, and then on to St. Johns Hospital in Tulsa, where he died several hours later.

According to Caney Fire Department spokesperson Billy Kolb, this is the first line of duty death for the Caney Volunteer Fire Department, and it’s a hugely sad loss for the department.

Sanders has served Caney as a firefighter since 1991 with honor, passion and dedication. He is survived by his wife, two children, two
grandchildren and 22 fellow firefighter brothers.

The funeral service for Firefighter Cliff Sanders will be held at the Cornerstone Church, 900 S. Ridgeway in Caney, KS @ 1400 on February 3rd.


Billy Kolb


Name: Clifford “Cliff” Sanders
Rank: Firefighter

Age: 55

Gender: Male

Status: Volunteer

Years of Service: 24

Date of Incident: 01/28/2015

Time of Incident: 1537hrs

Date of Death: 01/29/2015

Fire Department: Caney Volunteer Fire Department

Address: 127 N Spring St, Caney, KS, 67333
Fire Department Chief: Tom Jones

Incident Description: Firefighter Sanders became ill and collapsed at the firehouse while responding to a grass fire call. Sanders was treated immediately at the station by fellow responders and transported to Jane Phillips Hospital in Bartlesville, Oklahoma, and then on to St. Johns Hospital in Tulsa where he died January 29th from a stroke.

Incident Location: 127 N Spring St, Caney, KS, 67333

Tribute is being paid to Firefighter Clifford “Cliff” Sanders at

Small heating unit fire causes elementary school evacuation

By Samantha Foster
Topeka Capital Journal – January 24, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

North Fairview Elementary School students were evacuated shortly before 2 p.m. Friday after a wall heating unit shorted out and caused a small fire in a classroom at the school.

The fire occurred about 1:45 p.m. at the school, 1941 N.E. 39th St.

Jeff Zehnder, spokesman for Seaman Unified School District 345, said the kids in Brenda Forster’s sixth-grade class were in the library when Forster returned to her room and saw a blaze coming from the wall heating unit and a bookshelf placed in front of it.

“She quickly yelled for a colleague to activate the fire alarm and call 911, then grabbed a fire extinguisher and put out the flames,” Zehnder said.

Zehnder estimated students and staff members were out of the school for 30 or 45 minutes, enjoying the mild temperatures in the lower 50s.

Soldier Fire Chief Karl McNorton said when crews arrived, the classroom was filled with smoke from “top to bottom.” he opened the classroom’s windows and threw the heating unit’s motor outside along with burned material from the bookshelf.

McNorton said “staff here did a wonderful job” taking care of the fire. The emergency plan worked, he said.

No injuries were reported.

Zehnder said the staff was grateful the small fire hadn’t occurred on the other side of the building, where a new addition is nearly complete.

Blaze destroys Abilene home

Abilene Reflector – Chronicle – January 26, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Photo by Joseph Trevino. Click on photo to view full-size image.

Photo by Joseph Trevino. Click on photo to view full-size image.

Firefighters battle a blaze at a home at the corner of Madison and Northwest Third Street, in Abilene. The fire started just before 5 p.m. on Sunday. First reports indicated that no one was home at the time the blaze started on the one-story gray house. Firefighters sawed-off a hole in the roof to create ventilation, where flames quickly flashed through the gouge. Firefighters poured water into the home, which engulfed the surrounding areas in thick, black smoke. A call to the fire department for comment was not returned Monday.

Unattended structure fire

Hoisington Dispatch – January 23, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

The Barton County Sheriff’s Office along with the Claflin Fire Department and fire units from Ellsworth County responded to a structure fire on Monday, January 19, at about 3:24 p.m. The location of the fire was at 1835 NE 150 Avenue. Upon arrival, officers discovered an outbuilding was fully involved, along with two passenger cars and a tractor that were inside. The property owner was identified as James Holmolka.

Investigation indicates fire was caused by trash that was burning in metal barrels and then left unattended. The dollar value of the property loss is unknown at this time. The incident is still under investigation.

Blaze consumes family’s rural home of two decades

By Tim Schrag
Hutchinson News – January 23, 2014
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Click on each photo to view full-size image.

Click on each photo to view full-size image.

kingman co fire 1302015b

A Thursday afternoon fire raged on into the evening, destroying a Kingman County family’s home of nearly 20 years.

Firefighters from Cheney, Pretty Prairie and Kingman were unable to put out the blaze and ultimately were forced to let it burn out on its own.

The two-story white farmhouse with a green roof was located in Mount Vernon, next to St. Rose Catholic Church, and was one of the few buildings left in the small community.

The farmhouse, built in the 1930s, belonged to Mark and Vickie Elpers. Mark, a farmer, and Vickie, a teacher at St. Joseph’s Catholic School in Ost, lived there with sons Joseph, 19, and Wyatt, 14. Joseph is a student a Hutchinson Community College studying fire science.

The fire started in the basement around 1 p.m. Mark Elpers’ brother Pat first noticed smoke coming from the home later in the afternoon while checking cattle.

Firefighters from Cheney arrived on the scene after 4 p.m. Additional help from Kingman and Pretty Prairie was called in to help contain the flames.

Cheney Fire Chief Brad Ewy said major portions of the flooring had already burned through when firefighters arrived.

With the floors already gone, there was little the crews could do, Ewy said.

Rural fires such as this regularly pose a challenge to firefighters, said Ewy, simply because of logistics. Water had to be brought in by truck, and the closest hydrant was in Sedgwick County, along 21st Street.

“It’s a tragedy,” Ewy said. “Thankfully, no one was hurt.”

Although Mount Vernon is in Kingman County, it falls under the jurisdiction of the Cheney Fire Department. Mount Vernon is in Kingman County near Cheney Lake, along the Reno and Sedgwick county borders between Kingman and Cheney St. Rose is the most prominent fixture in the area and holds Mass on Sundays at 11 a.m.

Crews from Cheney remained at the scene overnight to make sure the fire burned out safely.

Ewy estimated the fire would likely burn out completely over the next few days.

The cause of the fire is yet to be determined. The home’s furnace and water heater were both located in the basement. Ewy said he suspects one of those appliances likely caused the fire.

“It’s just mind-boggling,” said Mark Elpers. “Every time we turn around we realize something new. We don’t have any clothes or shoes.”

The family chose to be optimistic and thankful no one was in the home when the fire happened and that it did not spread to the farm’s outbuildings or to the church.

“Things can be replaced,” said Vickie Elpers. “The only thing that can’t is my pictures.”

Up on the housetop

Arkansas City Traveler – January 24, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Arkansas City firefighters and police responded to a fire about 10 a.m. Friday in the 1300 block of North Second Street, according to police scanner reports. The suspected cause of the fire was electrical in nature, according to Fire-EMS Chief Bobby Wolfe. The damage to the home was limited to the bathroom.

Fire damages Ottawa home

Ottawa Herald – January 24, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 30, 2015

Discarded smoking material sparked a house fire on South Cherry Street Thursday afternoon in Ottawa, Ottawa Fire Department officials said.

Firefighters responded 3:48 p.m. to a fire at 720 S. Cherry St. and were able to contain the blaze to the second floor, according to a fire report.

“The fire started on the second floor of the home and was caused by discarded smoking material,” Jeff Carner, Ottawa Fire Chief, said. “No one was home at the time of the incident and there were no injuries. The fire was contained to the room of origin and caused an estimated $5,500 damage to the structure and contents.”

Quick-thinking school bus driver saves Baldwin City home from flames

By Elvyn Jones
Lawrence Journal World – January 30, 2015

baldwin city fire 1302015

School bus drivers are often asked to take on the duties of nurses, confidants and disciplinarians in the course of driving their routes.

Thursday morning, Tammy Ritter, a bus driver with the Baldwin City school district, took on another role — that of firefighter.

Lori and Dennis Lederer credit Ritter with saving their rural Baldwin City home Thursday morning after a dog house caught fire on their front porch from a light bulb meant to provide warmth to their Boston terrier, Bilbo.

“We’re extremely thankful,” Lori Lederer said. “With the wind this morning, we would have lost our house if she didn’t do what she did.”

While driving her morning route about 7 a.m. Thursday west of Baldwin City, Ritter noticed 4-foot-high flames on the porch of the Lederer’s home at CR 1040 North 100 Road. She stopped the bus with some of her students in their seats and walked to the porch, fearing someone could be in the house.

“I didn’t run,” she said. “This is my second week back to work after breaking my ankle.”

The Lederers and their son Johnny Lederer had all left home for the day. When Ritter found no one home, she took the situation into her own hands. After unplugging the electrical cord to the light, Ritter first tried to lift the doghouse, but got only a lungful of smoke for her efforts as the roof came loose. She took a moment to catch her breath before successfully kicking the doghouse to the side of the porch and then tossing it on the front lawn.

“When I threw it, fire went everywhere,” Ritter said. “I stomped out all the puddles as best I could using my good foot.”

Ritter then got back on her bus and called the Willow Springs Township Fire Department, but with a new passenger onboard.

“When I got on the bus, the dog said, ‘I’m going to stay with you,’” Ritter explained.

So bus driver, Bilbo and passengers moved on to the next stop on Ritter’s route, where she told Tiffany Paulick, the mother of her students, about the fire.

“She wasn’t sure what she should do,” Paulick said. “She asked me if I could go check on it to make sure it wasn’t all over the porch. She asked if I could take the dog, but I have two dogs and had an appointment in Lawrence.”

Paulick went to the Lederers home, finding the smoldering remains of the doghouse she was worried would reignite to threaten the house in the brisk morning wind.

“Luckily, there was a hose on the side of the house,” she said. “I used that to hose it down.”

Lederer, meanwhile, got a call at about 7:30 a.m. at her job at Baldwin High School from her son-in-law, Christopher Brubaker, a Willow Springs firefighter. He told her there had been a fire at her home, but that firefighters had arrived to find Ritter’s quick save followed by Paulick’s work with the garden hose had taken care of the problem.

Ritter returned to the house after dropping her students at school, happy to find everything was fine. So was Bilbo.

“As soon as I stopped the bus, the dog saw everything was OK and ran out the door,” she said.

The only damage to the house was a dark stain on the porch floor and another football-sized singe on the siding. It wasn’t much, but it was evidence of what could have been a disaster for the Lederers if not for the timely actions of Ritter and Paulick, Lederer said Thursday evening.

“We can’t believe this happened,” Lederer said. “She came by just at the right time. My neighbors, I don’t even know them. They just moved in. We wouldn’t be in this house now if not for them. We know it would have just went up in flames.”

House fire in Augusta

KWCH – January 30, 2015

augusta fire 1302015


A family in Augusta is safe after their house caught fire overnight. Firefighters in Augusta say smoke detectors helped save them.

Crews were called to the house in the 400 block of E. 15th at around 10:00 Thursday. They found heavy fire coming from the home.

Crews also had to deal with a power line that fell in front of the house while they were fighting the fire.

Fire officials tell us the smoke detectors went off in the home and alerted the family. They got out of the home and called 911 from a neighbor’s house.

One person was treated at the scene for minor smoke inhalation.

No word yet on what caused the fire.

Two Garden City residents treated and released for injuries sustained in rollover accident

Garden City Telegram – January 30, 2015

Photo by Josh Harbour.

Photo by Josh Harbour.

A vehicle was flipped on its side and two Garden City residents were injured in the accident at the intersection of Campus Drive and Mary Street Wednesday night.

Thyra Thompson, 73, and Ayaan Kulmiye, 42, both of Garden City, were taken to St. Catherine Hospital Wednesday where they were treated and released for minor injuries sustained in the accident.

According to the Garden City Police Department, officers were dispatched to the intersection of Campus Drive and Mary Street at approximately 9:43 p.m. Wednesday after a report of a rollover accident.

When officers arrived, they found a black 2013 Lexus utility vehicle lying on the driver’s side in the southbound lane in the 2600 block of Campus Drive and a 2007 Toyota Camry against the northwest curb of the intersection.

According to police, Garden City Fire/Rescue removed Thompson, who was trapped in the vehicle that was lying on its side.

According to Capt. Randy Ralston, Thompson was traveling north on Campus Drive and Kulmiye was traveling west on Mary Street. He said the cause of the accident is still under investigation.

Fire destroys home

By John Richmeier
Leavenworth Times – January 30, 2015

A house was destroyed by fire early Thursday morning in west Leavenworth, a Fire Department spokesman said.

The fire was reported at 2:04 a.m. at 919 S. 21st St. No injuries were reported.

“There was no one home at the time,” Leavenworth Assistant Fire Chief Mark Nietzke said.

He said the fire at the single-story ranch-style house was reported by a neighbor.

“There was heavy fire and smoke showing when we got there,” he said.

Assistance was requested from the Fort Leavenworth Fire Department and Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1, and the two departments sent crews to the scene.

Nietzke said it took about 40 minutes for firefighters to get the blaze under control.

“We just fought it from the outside,” he said.

Nietzke said the decision not to send firefighters into the structure was a good one because the main floor collapsed into the basement.

He also estimated that between 80 to 85 percent of the roof fell into the house.

Three off-duty Leavenworth firefighters were called to stand by with a reserve truck to handle additional calls while other members of the department were battling the fire.

Nietzke said the home’s owners, who have been out of town, were notified of the fire.

Nietzke said he doesn’t know what caused the fire, and investigators may not be able to make it into the structure.

“It’s a big mess,” he said.

Two-vehicle accident leads to grass fire

By Kelton Brooks
Hutchinson News – January 29, 2015

Several people on the scene of a two-vehicle accident that pinned a car under a semi-trailer used blankets and fire extinguishers to put out a fire ignited by the crash.

The accident occurred around 2:45 p.m. Thursday on U.S. 50 in front of the Pleasant View shopping center.

Sheri Nisly, 24, was eastbound on U.S. 50 in a red Pontiac Firebird, and Robert Neumeyer, 52, Oklahoma, was also eastbound driving a semi-trailer hauling bricks, according to the Kansas Highway Patrol.

The trooper said Nisly was attempting to make a right turn into the shopping center, but she drove into the path of Neumeyer, who then swerved onto to right shoulder to try and avoid hitting Nisly.

The two vehicles collided, “corner to corner,” the trooper said, leading to the Pontiac getting stuck under the flatbed of the semi in a field in front of Pleasant View. The front fender of the Pontiac was torn off in the process leaving a trail of debris and skid marks.

A grass fire was started by a tire on the Pontiac exploding because of the accident, leaving a large chunk of charred grass.

A number of people rushed in and put out the fire with several blankets and fire extinguishers before emergency personnel arrived on the scene.

“God was with her. It could’ve been worse,” said Shirley Nisly, who witnessed the accident from the inside of Pleasant View Home Improvement.

No one involved in the accident was transported to the hospital.

Illegal burn gets out of control

By Tim Schrag
Hutchinson News – January 29, 2015

An illegal burn in the 600 block of North Jefferson Street was put out swiftly Thursday afternoon.

When Hutchinson firefighters arrived on the scene at approximately 2:50 p.m. the fire in a burn barrel several feet from residence had spread to the home’s siding and lawn.

Firefighters put the fire out in minutes.

The man was handcuffed by police. No names have been released.

The Hutchinson Fire Department reminds the public it is illegal to burn items in city limits without a permit.

Overland Park firefighters battle 3 deck fires since midnight

By Karen Yancey
KMBC – January 29, 2015

Overland Park, Kansas, firefighters said they have put out three deck fires since midnight.

Authorities said careless handling of smoking materials was likely to blame in each case.

None of the fires caused serious property damage.

Overland Park Fire Marshal Mark Sweany said smokers should take extra precautions when discarding smoking materials, such as not flicking cigarette butts into flammable containers, mulch or planting beds.

Authorities said high winds and dry conditions have heightened the fire risk.

Grass fire rekindles in Barber County

KAKE – January 29, 2015


Firefighters in Barber County are working once again to get a grass fire under control.

The initial fire broke out around 2:30 p.m. Wednesday about 10 miles west of Medicine Lodge. The fire never burned any structures.

Fire crews from Comanche, Barber, and Woods counties in Oklahoma responded to the fire.

The Barber County sheriff said the fire flared back up around 3:30 a.m. Thursday. It’s mostly contained, but crews are still working to extinguish it.

Incident Rehab and Medical Monitoring Class

Saturday – April 18, 2015 at Salina, KS. Click on flyer below for more information.

Incident rehabilitation has been identified as a critical part of managing the health and safety of incident responders and reducing line-of-duty injuries and deaths. This three hour comprehensive program provides the knowledge to set up and administer incident rehabilitation according to the new 2015 NFPA 1584 standards.

The class is completely FREE and everyone will received 3 hours of EMS CE as approved by CECBEMS.

Incident Rehab and Medical Monitoring Class Flyer


Crews battle mobile home fire in S. Wichita

KWCH – January 29, 2015

wichita fire 1282015

Fire crews are on the scene of a house fire in the 1900 block of W. MacArthur.

Crews report seeing smoke and flames coming from a mobile home when they arrived on scene at around 8:35 Thursday morning.

911 dispatchers say there are no reports of injuries and crews don’t believe anyone is inside the home.

The cause is under investigation, but crews believe an appliance caught fire and spread into the walls of the home.

Anhydrous spill in Labette County

KOAM – January 29, 2015

On January 26th at 9:54 PM, Labette County 911 Dispatch received a report of an anhydrous spill, occurring at 4:40 PM on 10000 Road in a field. It was further reported a farmer was in the process of applying the anhydrous in the field when a malfunction occurred causing the uncontrolled release of anhydrous. The tank, having a 1500 gallon capacity, was believed to have been half full at the time of the incident.

Upon emergency responders arriving on scene, deputies restricted traffic into the mile section as the Altamont Fire Department entered the area to assess possible Hazmat concerns. As a result, it was determined access to the area would be restricted briefly to allow the anhydrous to dissipate. At 11:32 PM, deputies cleared from the area. No injuries were reported and it was determined evacuation was not necessary.

No injuries reported in North Topeka early morning fire

By Ann Marie Bush
Topeka Capital Journal – January 29, 2015

Photos by Ann Marie Bush.

Photos by Ann Marie Bush.

topeka fire 1292015b

topeka fire 1292015c

topeka fire 1292015d


A house in the 1500 block of N. Kansas Ave. caught fire early Thursday.

Topeka firefighters were dispatched to 1530 N. Kansas Ave. about 5:30 a.m.

A homeowner was safely outside the structure when crews arrived.

Firefighters were still at the scene at 6:45 a.m. The front of the house was completely destroyed and firefighters were still working on putting out hot spots.

No injuries were reported.

The homeowner was sitting inside a fire vehicle speaking with officials and staying warm as temperatures dipped into the low 40s and wind gusts of up to 30 miles per hour were reported.

The 1500 block of N. Kansas Ave. is closed as firefighters continue to work at the scene.

Pratt couple loses home in afternoon fire Wednesday

By Gale Rose
Pratt Tribune – January 29, 2015

Photos by Gale Rose.

Photos by Gale Rose.

Chad Van Slyke breaks out windows to help ventilate smoke.

Chad Van Slyke breaks out windows to help ventilate smoke.

Elisabeth Mohler sprays down smoking leaves in the back yard.

Elisabeth Mohler sprays down smoking leaves in the back yard.

Fire Safety Officer Greg Holmes points out a hot spot to Elisabeth Mohler.

Fire Safety Officer Greg Holmes points out a hot spot to Elisabeth Mohler.

Sparks fly as Lee Van Slyke cuts through metal to get to hot spots inside the walls.

Sparks fly as Lee Van Slyke cuts through metal to get to hot spots inside the walls.

Kenny Lee hooks up a fresh air tank for Doug Ray.

Kenny Lee hooks up a fresh air tank for Doug Ray.

A Pratt couple is without a home following a grass fire Wednesday night that got out of control and caused extensive damage to their home at County Club Estates.

A pair of 10-year-old juveniles set fire to a pile of leaves on the east end of Sada and Theresa Rubio’s home at lot E-18. The fire quickly got out of hand and the two juveniles ran to get water but by the time they got back the fire had spread to some mulch and the fire was huge, said Pratt Fire Chief David Kramer.

The fire got underneath the house on the southeast corner and set house ablaze. The fire gutted the southeast corner and did extensive heat and smoke damage to the rest of the house.

The Rubio’s were not injured but the house was a total loss, Kramer said.

Juveniles blamed for Hutchinson grass fire

By John Wright
KWCH – January 28, 2015

hutchinson fire 1282015

It took about ten minutes for Hutchinson firefighters to bring a grass fire under control in the 2900 block of Cedar Ridge Wednesday afternoon.

Deputy Fire Chief Doug Hanen said the one acre fire started about 4:48 p.m. in heavy brush between two homes. Crews remained on scene for an hour.

The cause of the fire is juveniles with fireworks. No one was injured. Hanen reminds everyone that any type of fire with dry grass and brush grows extremely fast.

” Fortunately, both these houses had short grass around both structures that help reduce loss during this fire,” Hanen said.

Hwy. 24 Reopens | Driver Identified In Wreck Near Douglas Co. Line

By Nick Viviani and Melissa Brunner
WIBW – January 28, 2015

douglas co fire 1282015


A stretch of Highway 24 near the border between Douglas Co. and Jefferson Co. re-opened Wednesday evening after being closed four hours due to a mid-afternoon wreck.

The Kansas Highway Patrol says the wreck happened just 2 pm Wednesday about four miles north of Lawrence.

According to the KHP crash log, a 1992 Buick LeSabre by 49-year-old Joseph Sauer of Wellsville was passing an eastbound truck hauling trash for Hamm Quarry when the truck started to make a left turn onto 3rd Street. The Buick ran into the truck’s trailer, ending up lodged beneath it.

Sauer was life-flighted to KU Medical Center with serious injuries. The truck’s driver, 52-year-old Kevin Hooper of Topeka, was taken to Lawrence Memorial Hospital with minor injuries.

Highway 24 was shut down in that area for four hours while authorities investigated. The highway re-opened just before 6 pm.

Fire under control after burning down garage

Arkansas City Traveler – January 28, 2015

arkansas city fire 1282015

A grass fire quickly turned into a structure fire Wednesday afternoon in the 1500 block of North Eighth Street, according to police scanner reports.

A small grass fire initially was reported at 3:56 p.m. at 1526 N. Eighth St., close to a garage.

The fire spread quickly to the garage, according to the Arkansas City Fire-EMS Department.

At the same time, scanner reports indicated a nearby fire hydrant was not operable, resulting in the call for additional water tankers from Arkansas City and Winfield.

At 4:20 p.m., Westar confirmed it had cut power to the whole area, according to scanner reports.

One garage has already has burned to the ground, according to reports.

The fire was basically under control by 5 p.m.

Crews battle large grass fire in south central Kansas

KSN – January 28, 2015

barber co fire 1282015


Multiple grass fires are keeping crews busy in south central Kansas.

The largest fire is in Barber County was reported to be over fire is 8 miles long.

Eight different rural fire departments are fighting it and two more are on standby.

Crews out of Oklahoma are also bringing in water to help fight.

In Sedgwick County, there are no fires that large, but crews are finishing up at a scene near I-235 and Broadway. There is no serious damage reported at this time.

Blazin’ in the wind

Chanute Tribune – January 28, 2015

chanute fire 1282015

A fire that originated at 1920 W. Main early Wednesday afternoon quickly spread north and east in the windy conditions. Chanute Fire Department Chief Kevin Jones said the owner of the property, Carl Hurlbert, had been burning trash when the wind caught the fire. Approximately 60 acres of grass fields were burned, but there was no significant damage to any properties and there were no injuries. CFD worked to get the main body of fire extinguished by 3:30 pm. KDOT and city workers assisted with traffic, as both US-169 and the Cherry Street overpass had to be shut down due to heavy smoke. Jones reminds everyone to always check the weather before burning anything outdoors.

Fire reported in 1900 block of Burlingame Road

By Brandy Nance
Emporia Gazette – January 28, 2015

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Fire crews responded to a grass and strict fire at 1957 Road Burlingame Road block of Burlingame Road just after 1 p.m. Wednesday afternoon.

Rex Fisher of the Emporia Fire Department said the fire was started by burning trash.

“The occupant was out back and she was burning her trash,” Fisher said. “The wind came up and got some trash out of the burn barrel and started the grass on fire which spread to the storage shed and it was fully involved when we arrived.”

Fire crews were extinguishing what was left of the fire to prevent it from spreading.

“That wind can do funny things and pick the trash up out of the barrel,” Fisher said.

Volunteers douse area grass fires

Iola Register – January 21, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 28, 2015

allen co fire 1282015

A pair of grass fires kept emergency crews busy Tuesday.

A spark caused by a saw started a fire in the 900 block of 600 Street.

Iola firefighters were able to douse the fire before it could spread to nearby buildings.

A controlled burn spread too quickly to be contained, meanwhile, near the intersection of Delaware Road and 4850 Street, prompting calls to volunteer firefighters from the Elsmore/Savonburg and Moran departments.

1 Injured in Rollover

KSAL – January 28, 2015

Photo by Saline County Sheriff's Office.

Photo by Saline County Sheriff’s Office.

A McPherson man walks away from a rollover crash on I-135.

The Saline County Sheriff’s Office reports Seth Sterling of McPherson was driving a 2002 Toyota Tacoma pickup truck southbound on I-135 early Wednesday morning when he swerved to miss a raccoon in the roadway.

Deputies say the vehicle flipped multiple times near milepost 83 before coming to rest on its side.

Sterling suffered minor injuries and was transported to Salina Regional Health Center for treatment before being released.

The crash happened at about 1:55am.

Deputies say Sterling was wearing his seatbelt.

Predawn fire ravages ‘Ottawa Truck’ building

By Doug Carder and Clinton Dick
Ottawa Herald – January 22, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 28, 2015

ottawa fire 1282015

Click on photo to view full-size image.

Click on photo to view full-size image.

The cause of a non-injury fire early Wednesday morning that damaged a 20,000-square-foot storage building at Kalmar Ottawa, also known as Ottawa Truck, is undetermined, but was not suspicious in nature, Jeff Carner, Ottawa Fire Chief, said.

The fire broke out at 3:20 a.m. Wednesday, with flames soon towering above the unoccupied building in the predawn darkness. It took 17 Ottawa firefighters less than an hour to bring the fire under control, Carner said. The fire did not spread to other facilities in the area, and no firefighters were injured battling the blaze, the chief said.

The building, which was being prepared for demolition, appeared to have been used for overflow storage at the northwest corner of the facilities complex at Kalmar Ottawa, 415 E. Dundee St., Ottawa, Carner said.

“There was a tractor, some skid steers, lifts and 15 or 20 large diesel engines,” Carner said Wednesday afternoon of his earlier observations at the scene. “We’ve asked for a complete inventory. We haven’t received it yet, so we don’t have a damage estimate at this time. But it did appear most of the contents in fact were saved.

“The building had a lot of different uses over the years, but from our observations it looked like most recently it was primarily being used for overflow storage,” Carner said.

Kalmar Ottawa officials did not return calls for comment Wednesday.

“Utilities had already been disconnected and contractors had already been on scene making some initial preparations for the demolition,” Carner said.

Because the building was being used for overflow storage and soon was to be demolished, Carner said he doubted that Wednesday’s fire caused much of a disruption to the company’s operations.

About 50 percent of the structure was damaged, Carner estimated.

“The fire was originally reported by a passerby observing while going over the overpass,” Carner said. “Initial arrival indicated that the bulk of the fire was in the northeast portion of the building.”

Fire investigators cleared the scene about 8:51 a.m. Wednesday, he said.

Ottawa was the only fire department on the scene, but the agency requested assistance from Lincoln-Ottawa-Harrison Fire Department to send an engine and some personnel to staff Ottawa’s fire station in the event another call came in while Ottawa firefighters were battling the Kalmar fire, Carner said.

Fire in manufacturing plant

Harper Advocate – January 7, 2015
Submitted by Newz Group Clipping Service – January 28, 2015

Harper firemen, assisted by a ladder truck from Anthony found more smoke than fire in the attic of the Green Line manufacturing building at the south edge of Harper adjacent to Highway K-14 Sunday morning.

The temperature was about 10 degrees with a chill factor of near zero when longtime Green Line employee Randy Ricke entered the structure to find smoke building up in the approximately 300 foot by 70 foot metal manufacturing building. The fire department was called at 9:40 a.m.

Although a wood burning stove fire was cold, the smoke was coming from insulation burning next to the triple wall vent pipe going from the stove through the ceiling, attic and roof.

The ceiling of the plant is metal and firefighters could only access the small fire from a scuttle opening. A small amount of water was used to put out the insulation with firemen hauling the burned insulation out of the cramped ceiling area by the bucket full so that there couldn’t be hidden hot spots to rekindle later.

Damage was limited to about a 15 square foot spot of insulation.

The Anthony unit checked the top of the roof and Harper firemen were on scene mopping up until about 11 a.m.

Green Line was back in business as normal Monday.

Man helped from pickup on fire after wreck

Salina Post – January 28, 2015

Photos by Saline County Sheriff Office.

Photos by Saline County Sheriff Office.

saline co fire 1282015b

A rural Salina man was pulled from his pickup that caught fire after he crashed Tuesday evening. Saline County Sheriff Glen Kochanowski said 55-year-old Ricky Liester was eastbound in the 4400 block of E. North around 8:40pm, when he lost control of his pickup, it went into a ditch, struck hedge trees, and came to a stop in the yard of the home of Herschel Sanders.

Sanders who was outside with his dog, helped Liester out of the truck after it began to catch fire.

Liester who had a nose injury and deep cut on his left elbow, refused medical treatment at the scene, but later was taken to the hospital for treatment of his injuries.

The crash investigation continues, and no citations have been issued as of Wednesday morning.

Kansas Volunteer Fire Assistance Program

Grant Details:
Application Due Date: April 2015 est



The purpose of the Volunteer Fire Assistance (VFA) Program is to organize, train, and equip fire departments in rural areas and rural communities to prevent and suppress fires.

Funding Areas:

  • Wildland PPE
  • Wildland fire suppression equipment
  • Communication equipment
  • SCBA
  • Structural equipment
  • Water handling equipment
  • Fire prevention and suppression tools/materials
  • Training Materials


  • Fire departments serving communities of less than 10,000

Award Details:

No single award will be greater than $9,998.

Additional Details:

Wildfire and communication equipment will be given priority.

Unallowable costs include purchase, construction, or renovation of capital improvement such as fire stations or pressurized water systems.



Organization Information:
Organization: Kansas Forest Service

Contact Information:
Contact Name: Ross Hauck
Contact Email:
Contact Phone: 785-532-3314

More Information:

Truck goes airborne, strikes school building

By John Richmeier
Leavenworth Times – January 28, 2015

Leavenworth police Officers Ezekiel Stevenson and Wendy Cook look at tire marks left on the side of a building at Xavier Catholic School by a vehicle that had been airborne. The officers were at the scene Tuesday, the day after the crash, to take measurements of the scene. Photo by John Richmeier.

Leavenworth police Officers Ezekiel Stevenson and Wendy Cook look at tire marks left on the side of a building at Xavier Catholic School by a vehicle that had been airborne. The officers were at the scene Tuesday, the day after the crash, to take measurements of the scene. Photo by John Richmeier.

Two people were taken to the hospital after a truck went airborne, struck a school building and overturned, a Leavenworth police spokesman said.

The crash was reported at 5:17 p.m. Monday at Xavier Catholic School, 541 Muncie Road.

A 26-year-old Lansing man reportedly was driving a 2007 Ford F-150 pickup on Muncie Road at a high rate of speed. He allegedly was driving west, which would mean the truck was traveling the wrong way on a one-way street, said Maj. Dan Nicodemus, deputy chief of the Leavenworth Police Department.

“The truck left the roadway on the south side of Muncie,” Nicodemus said.

The truck reached an embankment and went airborne. It struck the north side of a building on the Xavier campus, leaving tire marks on the exterior wall.

“The truck came to rest on its top,” Nicodemus said.

The driver was transported to Saint Luke’s Cushing Hospital. The truck’s passenger, a 24-year-old Leavenworth man, was taken to Overland Park Regional Medical Center.

“They were taken (to the hospital) to be checked out,” Nicodemus said.

The deputy chief said police believe the driver may have been impaired at the time of the crash.

The driver has been cited for allegedly driving under the influence of alcohol or drugs, driving the wrong way on a one-way street and driving recklessly.

Woman, 55, in critical condition after North Erie house fire

By Matt Riedl
Wichita Eagle – January 28, 2015

wichita fire 1282015

A 55-year-old woman was in critical condition at Via Christi Hospital St. Francis after suffering serious smoke inhalation at house fire late Tuesday, a Sedgwick County dispatcher said.

The fire in the basement of the house in the 2700 block of North Erie was reported around 10:45 p.m. Tuesday.

Wichita Fire Batallion Chief John Turner said four people were in the house at the time – three middle school-aged children and a grandmother.

No batteries were installed in the house’s smoke detectors, Turner said.

The children evacuated when the smoke started to burn their eyes, Turner said, and they noticed it coming up the stairs to the basement.

The grandmother also evacuated, but not before inhaling large quantities of smoke, Turner said.

The blaze, which had spread to two rooms in the basement, was extinguished quickly, Turner said.

As of midnight, investigators had not determined a cause for the fire.

Damage was estimated between $40,000 and $50,000, Turner said.

He stressed the importance of checking home smoke alarms regularly.

“It could have maybe prevented an injury tonight, or worse,” Turner said. “If it were later tonight, without anybody noticing, we could be pulling out fatalities here tonight.”

City displays new public safety vehicles

By Jesse Brown
Pittsburg Morning Sun – January 27, 2015

Fire Chief Mike Simons highlights the features of Pittsburg Fire Department's new Engine No. 1, which employs a Compressed Air Foam System to battle fires Tuesday. JESSE BROWN/THE MORNING SUN

Fire Chief Mike Simons highlights the features of Pittsburg Fire Department’s new Engine No. 1, which employs a Compressed Air Foam System to battle fires Tuesday. JESSE BROWN/THE MORNING SUN

The Pittsburg Fire Department and the Pittsburg Department of Public Utilities unveiled their new vehicles and equipment Tuesday afternoon behind the fire department building, which was paid for by sales tax dollars.

“Basically this is to celebrate the support of our community. This is all associated with the passing of the public safety sales tax a little over a year ago,” Fire Chief Mike Simons said. “So this apparatus today is just one of the pieces of equipment that we told the community that we were going to be able to do with those fines, so this is basically a promise completed for the community.”

Simons spoke and highlighted all aspects of their pumper truck, Engine No. 1.

“It has some newer technologies that are different than we’ve had before,” Simons said. “Actually, this is the first unit in Southeast Kansas that has a CAFS unit, which is Compressed Air Foam System.”

Simons said the foam solution induced with compressed air has a lot of benefits, both for the community and firefighters.

“It has better knock down of fire, it knocks it down faster. The hoses — because of the make-up of the air and the foam — are lighter in weight, which are easier for the firefighters to manuever,” Simons said. “It’s a lot better on not only extinguishing the fire, but also during overhaul — after we put the fire out, we’re going in and hitting hot spots — we’re doing a lot less water damage with this CAFS system than we do normally.”

Simons said the fire department began training with the foam system Tuesday, and he ensured the foam is also environmentally safe. The new apparatus was roughly $650,000.

“It’s just taken it up a notch, which is what we promised the citizens we would do when they passed the public safety sales tax,” City Manager Daron Hall said.

Matt Bacon, assistant director of public utilities, showcased their new street sweeper truck for the city’s streets.

“It was just time to rotate equipment out, so we traded one of our other street sweepers — our mechanical sweeper — and purchased this one,” Bacon said.

Bacon said the cost was about $100,000, but that they got trade-in value for their previous street sweeper. He said the old street sweeper was having just too many mechanical issues and that it was time to replace it.

Bacon also introducted the remoted-controlled slope mower, which costed roughly $65,000.

“Basically what it’s designed to do is to mow on steep inclines, mow it to a 50 degree incline and it’s a remote-controlled unit, so … the operator can stand at a safe distance,” Bacon said. “We use it for things like the overpass and drainage ditches, things like that.”

“This is probably the smartest thing we’ve bought in a long time. I mean just the sheer fact we don’t have to have a person mowing at a 45-degree angle,” Hall said. “Work comp-wise and everybody getting home to their spouse safely-wise, it’s fantastic.”

Hall said thanks to the citizens for passing the public safety sales tax

“We think we spent your money well and it’s about safety,” Hall said. “… That’s why we wanted to have this tonight was to show everybody we went out and bought three serious pieces of equipment that are all about public safety, and giving the citizens what they need.”

Fire at Central Fiber in Wellsville started with explosion in mulch area

By Laura McCallister & Betsy Webster
KCTV 5 – January 27, 2015

Click on each photo to view full-size image.

Click on each photo to view full-size image.

wellsville fire 1272015b

A fire and explosion was reported at Central Fiber in Wellsville, a city located about 35 miles southwest of Kansas City.

Viewer photos show flames erupting from the building and illuminating the smoke from a distance. When a KCTV5 crew arrived on the scene, they said they could see the fire from Kansas Highway 33.

Police say the fire started in the mulch area with an explosion. The fire then spread to several other buildings.

A former employee told KCTV5 much of what is used in the process is paper, so when he heard about the explosion, he knew there was a strong chance of it spreading.

Residents say the plant does operate night shifts, so it’s really fortunate no one was hurt.

The Franklin County Sheriff’s Office says no one was injured.

Central Fiber is a national company headquartered in Wellsville. They manufacture environmentally-friendly cellulose fiber products made primarily from recovered post-consumer newspapers, magazines and wood materials.

The former employee said Central Fiber employs a sizable number of local people and is a good corporate partner in the community so he hopes they rebound from this.

El Dorado firefighters using helmet cameras

By Lily Wu
KAKE – January 27, 2015

el dorado fire 1272015


Since June, El Dorado firefighters have been using “Fire Cams” for training and investigations.

“It gives us an opportunity to look at the fire, how we attacked it, look how we went about the extinguishment of the fire,” said El Dorado Fire Chief Steve Moody.

He also added that the video captured, “gives one more page to the story when you put together your investigation.”

The two cameras owned by the department are also adding the firefighter’s perspective when fighting a fire.

“When they can actually see their firefighters in El Dorado, what we’re doing on a daily basis, it puts a lot more things in light for them,” said Master Firefighter Chris McGathy.

On Sunday, a house fire was captured on the Fire Cam. All five residents and their dog managed to escape before firefighters arrived. The homeowner said the video served as an educational tool.

“At first, it was kind of bothersome watching and reliving everything over,” said Marshall Karst. “But as I kind of watched it and relived it, I just hope it’s a good tool for people to use.”

The video posted online had an educational note.

“Be sure and close outside doors when you leave a home on fire. The fire needs oxygen. The less there is of it the more controlled the fire until firefighters arrive.”

Each of the cameras cost the department $250.

Logan County man hospitalized after train hits road grader

Hays Post – January 27, 2015

A Kansas man was injured in an accident just before 12:30 p.m. on Tuesday in Logan County.

The Kansas Highway Patrol reported a John Deere Road Grader driven by Jason Leo Wolf, 42, Monument, was southbound on Logan County Road 300 thirteen miles west of Oakley doing dirt work.

The grader crossed the railroad tracks and was struck by a westbound train.

Wolf was transported to Logan County Hospital.

The train engineer Richard Jay Brady, 48, Salina and the conductor Dennis R. Thompson, 47, Wellington, were not injured.

Structure fire on south Commercial Street

By Jessie Wagoner
Emporia Gazette – January 27, 2015

emporia fire 1272015

Shortly before 1 p.m. scanner traffic indicated a structure fire in the 100 block of south Commercial Street. The Emporia Fire Department responded to the residence.

A large amount of smoke was present but no flames were visible at that time. According to scanner traffic firefighters were originally unable to determine the origins of the fire. However, it was later determined that the fire was in the basement and walls.

The Olpe Fire Department arrived on scene at approximately 1:15 p.m. to provide assistance.

Augusta Volunteer Fire Unit holds annual dinner

Augusta Firefighter of the Year Ron Reavis with his father, Forest Reavis, who is a former volunteer fireman and previous winner of the award.  Photos by Belinda Larson.

Augusta Firefighter of the Year Ron Reavis with his father, Forest Reavis, who is a former volunteer fireman and previous winner of the award. Photos by Belinda Larson.

From left, Fire Division Commander Major Ray Marbut, Chief Tyler Brewer, Volunteer Fire Unit President James Frame, with Aaron Hall, volunteer firefighter who was honored for 10 years of service at Saturday night's event.

From left, Fire Division Commander Major Ray Marbut, Chief Tyler Brewer, Volunteer Fire Unit President James Frame, with Aaron Hall, volunteer firefighter who was honored for 10 years of service at Saturday night’s event.

Andy Hall, outgoing president of the Augusta Volunteer Fire Unit, passed the gavel to new president James Frame, at right.

Andy Hall, outgoing president of the Augusta Volunteer Fire Unit, passed the gavel to new president James Frame, at right.

By Belinda Larsen
Butler County Times Gazette – January 27, 2015

The family of dedicated individuals who are a part of the Augusta Volunteer Fire Unit and the Department of Safety Fire Division held their Volunteer Fire Unit’s Annual Dinner Saturday night at The Point Event Center in Augusta. The evening featured dinner and a recap of the past year’s fire calls, rescue calls and other events. It was also a time to honor those who serve.Both Major Ray Marbut and Chief Tyler Brewer spoke of the camaraderie and strong bonds between the firefighters, along with meeting the demands of the occupation. They also thanked the families of the volunteers, whose support makes it possible for the firefighters to protect the community. Firefighter Aaron Hall was honored for 10 years of service and Ron Reavis for 40 years. Reavis was also named the Volunteer Firefighter of the Year. Reavis thanked the group for the honor and gave credit to his dad and a number of retired firefighters who had inspired him at an early age.

%d bloggers like this: