Archive for September, 2018

Shawnee joins local fire departments’ effort to prepare to fight Kansas wildfires

By Leah Wankum
Shawnee Mission Post – September 28, 2018

After two devastating wildfires in Kansas in the past two years, Shawnee has decided to join the Kansas Wildland Task Force to pool resources with neighboring fire departments.

The Shawnee council agreed in a 7-0 vote to proceed with a memorandum of understanding between local fire response agencies in Johnson, Wyandotte and Leavenworth counties, including Olathe, District 2, Gardner and Kansas City, Kan.

Fire chief John Mattox said Shawnee firefighters deployed twice in the past two years on wildfires in Kansas.

“Part of the disaster was the organization of the deployment of crews in Kansas the last two years,” Mattox told the council at its Monday evening. “This is an effort to make that more coordinated and organized.”

The statewide effort, led by the Kansas Office of the State Fire Marshal, coordinates plans for mutual aid requests and responses across the state, an organized regional response force, and operational plans for those responding units.

By participating in the task force, Shawnee agreed to pay $12,000 out of the city general fund fire department budget to equip participants with wildland gear and also cover salaries for firefighters if and when they are deployed. Mattox indicated that he anticipates that responding to wildfires as part of the task force will incur no overtime costs. “Red Card” certification costs are also covered by in-county instructors.

Councilmember Eric Jenkins asked if the city could seek grant funding or financial assistance for the $12,000 to participate in the Kansas Wildland Task Force.

Because the two Kansas wildfires were declared disasters, the city could recoup costs, Mattox said. However, the mutual aid agreement won’t necessarily be used exclusively for declared disasters. Mattox said he couldn’t estimate future costs to deploy firefighters as part of the agreement.

“There’s no guarantee if it’s not declared that those expenses wouldn’t be on us to be a part of it,” the fire chief said.

Mattox said the Shawnee Fire Department plans to create a wildland team consisting of four members from each shift. Once these firefighters have completed training for “Red Card” certification, they will make sure a certified firefighter is available each shift for deployment in the event of a wildfire.

Shawnee also agreed to deploy one of the fire department’s two brush trucks to assist with wildfire-fighting.

“By pooling resources across several departments, an activation will have little to no impact on daily operations,” Mattox reported in a Sept. 24 city memo.

The Kansas Wildland/Emergency Task Force 3 of Kansas is operated through the Kansas State Fire Chiefs Association and the Kansas State Fire Marshal’s Office.

 

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Semi overturns, causes hazardous materials leak in KCK

By Zoe Brown
KCTV 5 – September 28, 2018

A semi in the area of 59th Lane and Kaw Drive overturned and created a hazardous materials leak on Thursday.

The material is unknown, but the police chief said that it was a “caustic material” and was in “powder form.”

The Kansas Highway Patrol and KCK Fire Department was on scene and created a 1,500-foot safety zone parameter.

Nearby schools were notified to have their buses avoid the area.

The Kansas City Police Department was assisting with traffic control.

The Kansas City, Kansas Unified Government said at about 3:30 p.m. that it would “likely be a lengthy process to clean up the spill the tow the vehicle away.”

 

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Richard Lee Scott

Richard Lee Scott, 102, of Russell, Kansas, died on Wednesday, September 26, 2018, at Main Street Manor in Russell, with his family by his side.

Richard was born on October 11, 1915, in Rural Russell County, Kansas, the son of Allen Ray and Jessie Ester (Herron) Scott.

He grew up in Russell County and graduated from Russell High School.

He later joined the United States Army, fought during World War II in the Pacific Theater and served in the 1st Battalion 43rd Engineer Regiment.

After serving his country he settled in the Waldo, Kansas, area. He met, fell in love and was united in marriage to Mable (Luder) Finkenbinder on January 14, 1961, in Russell, Kansas. Richard and Mable worked together on the farm and raising Mable’s children Mike, Carolyn and Tom. Mable preceded him in death on March 10, 1997. Richard was fortunate to find love a second time and was united in marriage to Joyce Lorenc on February 17, 2006, in Waldo, Kansas. She preceded him in death on April 02, 2015.

Richard worked most all his life in Waldo and enjoyed working as a successful farmer and stockman.

He was a life member of the Russell V.F.W. Post #6240, charter member of the Waldo Fire Department for 23 years, Waldo Township Trustee for 34 years, American Legion and Waldo City Council.

Surviving family include his step children Mike Finkenbinder and wife Judy of Waldo, Kansas; Carolyn Schultz and husband Melvin of Lucas, Kansas and foster son Tom Buzzell of Wichita, Kansas; brother Don Scott of Washington state; sisters Ruth Bartlett, Bessie Maranville and Carol Murphy all of Russell, Kansas. 9 grandchildren, 17 great grandchildren and 4 Great-Great Grandchildren.

He was preceded in death by his parents, his two wives and brothers Glen and Howard Scott and a sister Mary Ann.

A graveside celebration of Richard’s life will be held at 11:00 A.M. on Monday, October 01, 2018, at the Luray City Cemetery in Luray, Kansas. Burial will follow the graveside services and military rites will be performed by the Russell V.F.W. Post #6240. Visitation will be from 1 P.M. to 8 P.M. on Sunday, September 30, 2018, at the mortuary in Russell, with family present to greet guests from 4 P.M. to 6 P.M. on Sunday, September 30th. Memorials can be given to the Waldo Fire Department or Waldo Senior Center and sent in care of the mortuary. Pohlman-Varner-Peeler Mortuary of Russell, Kansas, is in charge of the funeral service arrangements.

 

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Search & Rescue Teams Training at Salina

KSAL – September 28, 2018

A large number of first responders are in the Salina area for a special training event this week. The Office of the State Fire Marshal and Disaster Medical Solutions is hosting the National Response Plan FEMA Urban Search and Rescue Medical Team Specialist Training Course. The course is designed and required for disaster response medical team members to help them prepare for future local, national, and international catastrophic events.

Instructors consisting of veterans with multiple deployments, provide real world experience through hands-on training are helping medical professionals refine their skills to treat victims in an austere environment. Instructor’s experience includes: OKC Bombing, PR Explosion, WTC/Pentagon Attacks, Hurricanes Andrew/Katrina/Sandy/Matthew/Harvey/Irma/Maria, National Security Events, Haiti/Mexico Earthquakes, and others.

These teams are called upon to respond to major disasters that require specialized skills and equipment to help save lives. These major events include earthquakes, hurricanes, acts of terrorism, flooding, structural collapse, hazardous material incidents and confined space rescue.

Physicians and Paramedics will undergo 4 days of classroom instruction and live hands-on scenario-based training in collapsed structures and confined spaces. They will learn techniques that have been proven to be effective during past incidents such as those mentioned above. The training will also include K9 training, to help members care for search dogs that normally deploy with US&R teams.

On Friday there will be a live Mass Casualty Incident Exercise with victims buried inside collapsed rubble waiting to be medically treated, rescued, and extracted from the disaster.

Five Task Force Response Agencies are represented throughout the state of Kansas.

Joe Hernandez, Program coordinator, said “By training Medical Taskforce Members in response to disasters using an all hazards approach will assist the State of Kansas be better prepared to save lives during future disasters.”

Crisis City is an advanced world class disaster training center located just outside of Salina where responders can experience the “real world” scenarios they will encounter while responding to disasters such as building collapses, tornadoes, or wide area floods.

 

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Sherman Co. Rural Firefighter to graduate from Ground Zero K-9 Emergency Training Center

By Becky Kiser
Hays Post – September 28, 2018

A northwest Kansas rural firefighter is one of two Kansans who will be the first state-level Urban Search and Rescue canine handlers from outside of Oklahoma to graduate from the Ground Zero Emergency Training Center in Okla. City this Thursday.

The Office of the State Fire Marshal (OSFM) has partnered with Ground Zero to provide two Kansas Urban Search and Rescue canine handlers with dogs and specialized training. Ground Zero, a non-profit organization started by former University of Oklahoma head football coach Barry Switzer and his wife Becky, has provided dogs to Oklahoma Task Force 1, as well as numerous other teams in Oklahoma and federal teams across the country.

On Sept. 17, Kansas sent the first two handlers, Chad Winton, Wichita Fire Department/KS-TF5, and Andy Kear, Sherman County Rural Fire/KS-TF7, to Tuttle, Okla. to start an intensive two-week, handler training course where they have trained and been paired with a canine partner.  After returning to Kansas, the teams will train with other members of the Kansas Task Force K9 Unit to achieve a Type I certification in disaster search. Currently the KS-TF K9 Unit has five certified canine teams with a goal of eventually having 12 certified teams in the state.

“It is an honor to be working with an organization like Ground Zero,” Randy Hill, OSFM Search and Rescue Coordinator, said. “Kansas needs to build its cadre of canine search teams that specialize in locating victims after a disaster like a tornado or building collapse.”

While the goal is to provide deployable canine teams for the State of Kansas, Hill added, having certified disaster search dogs will be a tremendous benefit to each handler’s employer and local jurisdiction.

Ground Zero will host a “Passing of the Leash,” ceremony on Thursday, Sept. 27, at 11 a.m. During this ceremony, they will be presenting four Urban Search and Rescue canines to four canine handlers from across the United States. The ceremony will be held at the Survivor Tree in the Oklahoma City National Memorial and Museum, the site of the 1995 bombing of the Murrah Federal Building that claimed 168 lives.  Media are encouraged to attend.

“The ceremony is important and marks the official beginning of the team’s journey of becoming another life-saving asset in disaster response,” Darrell Wilkerson, Ground Zero Program Director, said.

The handler and canine teams projected to take part in the ceremony are:

New Jersey (FEMA) Task Force (TF) 1 handler Charlie LaTerra and K-9 Ziva

Kansas TF handler Chad Winton and K-9 Sailor

Kansas TF handler Andy Kear and K-9 Zoom

Oklahoma TF-1 handler Jeff Hanlon and K-9 Finn

For more information on the Ground Zero Emergency Training Center visit www.groundzerosaveslives.com

 

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Fire damages building at Taylor Forge

By Brian McCauley
Miami County Republic – September 28, 2018

Photo by Gene Morris

A fire destroyed a compressor room at Taylor Forge Engineered Systems on Saturday night, and although no injuries were reported, several pieces of equipment were damaged.

Paola Fire Chief Andy Martin said the alarm was sounded at 6:06 p.m. Saturday, and firefighters were on scene at 6:14 p.m. Upon arrival, Paola firefighters decided to take a defensive approach as the compressor room had already been evacuated and it was totally engulfed.

Martin said it was the right call because spraying water into the room before the electrical power and gas were isolated could have ended badly, especially since the room contained several powerful compressors.

The compressor room is attached to the main building, and Martin said firefighters sprayed water on the neighboring walls to contain the fire.

Firefighters from Osawatomie and Louisburg were called to assist, but Paola firefighters were the only ones needed at the scene, Martin said.

The fire was under control shortly after firefighters arrived, and they cleared the scene at 8:41 p.m.

Martin applauded Taylor Forge for following all of the proper procedures and evacuating quickly.

“They did exactly what they were supposed to do,” Martin said.

The room was heavily damaged, which Martin said may make it difficult to track down a cause for the fire, although the initial thought is that it was an electrical issue.

Martin estimates at least $250,000 worth of damage was done.

Taylor Forge, which is located at 208 N. Iron St., has a worldwide reputation for its development and manufacturing of liquid separation equipment for the pipeline industry.

 

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Steve Wells Retires from Russell City Fire Department

By David Elliott
KRSL – September 28, 2018

On Monday, September 24, Russell City Fire Department Captain Steve Wells retired after 26 years of dedicated service to the City of Russell and its citizens.

Captain Wells joined the Russell City Fire Department in 1992 as a probationary firefighter and worked his way up through the ranks to Captain, a position he held since 2011.

A come and go reception honoring Wells’ service to the Russell City Fire Department was held on Thursday, September 27 in the City Council Chambers.

Wells will continue to work for the City of Russell as the Wastewater Treatment Plant Manager.

 

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Ralph E. Ferguson, Jr.

Ralph E. Ferguson, Jr., 77, of Williamsburg, passed away Wednesday, September 26, 2018, at the University of Kansas Health System.

Funeral mass will be held at 10:00 A.M., Tuesday, October 2, 2018, at St. Boniface Catholic Church, Scipio, Kansas.

A rosary will be said at 6:30 P.M., Monday, October 1st, at Dengel & Son Mortuary, Ottawa, followed by a family and friends’ visitation at 7:00 P.M.

Interment St. Patrick’s Cemetery, at Emerald, south of Williamsburg.

Ralph was born August 28, 1941, in Williamsburg, Kansas, the son of Ralph Sr. and Jennie (Holland) Ferguson.

He was a lifelong Franklin County resident.

He attended Ottawa High School with the class of 1960.

Ralph was united in marriage to Sandi Lee Smith September 4, 1993, in Richmond. She survives of the home.

Other survivors include six children, Brenda Stinson and husband Joe of Ottawa, Nancy Parkin and husband JC of Pomona, Rick Ferguson and wife Pauline of Williamsburg, Wanda Hamilton and husband Ray of Pomona, “short” Kim Weers of Princeton; and Jay Dee Weers and wife “tall” Kim of Le Roy; sister, Mary Alice Lasseter of Ottawa; eleven grandchildren; thirteen great-grandchildren; and numerous aunts, uncles, nieces, nephews and cousins.

He was preceded in death by his parents, Ralph Sr. and Jennie Ferguson.

Ralph was employed for Pepsi Cola from 1960 to 1979 as a route driver and the Williamsburg Coop from 1979 to 1992 as a manager. In 1992, he became the manager with Beachner Grain of Richmond for 26 years, retiring December 31, 2016.

He was a member of the St. Boniface Catholic Church at Scipio; Williamsburg/Homewood Rural Fire Department for 40 years and Fire Chief for over 30 years; board member for West Franklin USD 287 in the 1980s and 1990s, Franklin County Fair, and Rural Water #4; church councils; Williamsburg Lions Club; Williamsburg Community Building; Kansas Livestock Association; and Power of the Past.

Ralph’s number one interest was work, his grandchildren and great grandchildren, followed by church, socializing and antique tractor rides.

The family suggests memorial contributions to Ralph Ferguson Memorial or the Williamsburg/Homewood Fire Dept. c/o Dengel & Son Mortuary, 235 S. Hickory, Ottawa, Kansas 66067.

 

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David Allison Wickersheim

On the morning of September 21, David Allison Wickersheim made cancer release its grip on him as he peacefully left his earthly body while surrounded by family.

Dave was a devoted husband, wonderful father of four, world’s greatest grandpa, heroic firefighter, lifelong educator, gentleman dancer, donut lover, and cat whisperer.

Born at Ft. Dodge, Iowa, Dave met Nancy Lorraine Mohorc while in the Air Force. They married in 1970. After the Air Force, Dave decided to dedicate his life to serving by battling fires through both education and action. Dave put his boots on the ground for the Waterloo Fire Department by fighting fires while also receiving his bachelor’s degree from a local college.

Later, he moved to Lawrence, Kansas where he received his master’s degree from Baker University. There he continued to educate through the Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute at the University of Kansas, teaching future generations how to be safe while effectively fighting fires.

During all this time, Dave had a love for trains and railways – he studied everything from their engineering to their history. Dave had an impressive model train collection that continued to technologically advance over the years.

Upon retirement he and Nancy moved to Eudora, Kansas, where Dave became involved with teaching at the Eudora Fire Department. In their spare time together, you could often find him and Nancy at a square dance somewhere in Kansas and even in other states. They made countless friends from all over the nation along the way. When not dancing, they were spending time with their seven grandchildren every chance they got.

Dave is survived by his devoted wife of 48 years, Nancy. They had four handsome sons: David (Jan) of Florissant, MO; Matthew (Jen) of Independence, MO; Jason (Colleen) of Overland Park, KS; and Michael (Michelle) of Lawrence, KS. Their sons and incredible daughters-in-law started their own families with seven children: Emilie, Simon, Brenden, Keaten, Max, Garren, and Rowen.

A Celebration of Life will be held at 2:00 p.m., October 20, at Holy Family Catholic Church, 820 Birch Street, Eudora, KS 66025. An ice cream reception will follow.

Sunday Mass at Holy Family on October 21 will be dedicated to Dave.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to:

The David Wickersheim Memorial Scholarship Fund

Eudora Fire Association

Attn: Nathaniel Pike

930 Main Street

Eudora, KS 66025

 

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Job Opening – Police/Fire Officer – MTAA Police and Fire Department

Currently accepting applications for an entry level officer position with the MTAA Police & Fire Department.

Pursuant to K.S.A. 74-5616(1) applicants must be 21 years of age to be certified as a law enforcement officer. Police or Fire background desired. Must be available to work a 24–hour shift schedule consisting of 24 hours on-duty followed by 48 hours off-duty and to work overtime as requested. Additional duties include some general maintenance and outside work. Starting annual wage is $31,366 plus benefits.

Click the links to download the application form and the job description.  For more information call the Office of Human Resources at (785) 862-2362. Completed application may be submitted to MTAA by mail to 6510 SE Forbes Ave., Ste. 1, Topeka, KS 66619-1446; fax to 785-862-1830; or email to hr@mtaa-topeka.org.  Applications will be accepted until the position is filled.

EOE/MF

 

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KSFFA Regional Fire School – Quinter – January 2019

KSFFA Regional Fire School
Hosted by Quinter Fire Department
January 5-6, 2019
Location:

Saturday – All Day

  1. Wildfires
  2. Pump Operations
  3. Vehicle Extrication
  4. Grain Elevator Emergencies
  5. Honoring Our Own

Sunday – 8 a.m.

  1. Fire Behavior
  2. Firefighter Safety and Survival
  3. Lessons Learned
  4. Oil Tank Battery Fires

Sunday – Noon

  1. KSFFA Burn Trailer
  • These courses are offered at no charge.
  • These schools are open to all firefighters/EMS
  • The KSFFA furnishes medical insurance for all participants.
  • The KSFFA is not responsible for lost or damaged clothing or equipment.
  • If you desire to have Firefighter One or Two testing, this must be pre-registered through Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute.
  • The KSFFA offers fit testing with its porta-count machine at all regional fire school.

 

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KSFFA Regional Fire School – Caney – December

KSFFA Regional Fire School
Hosted by Caney Fire Department
December 1-2, 2018
Location: Lincoln Memorial Elementary School – 201 E 1st. Ave., Caney

Saturday Morning – 8:00 a.m.

  1. Engine Company Ops – Requires PPE & SCBA
  2. Search and Rescue – Requires PPE & SCBA
  3. Vehicle Extrication – Requires PPE
  4. Ventilation – Requires PPE and SCBA
  5. Fire Behavior

Saturday Afternoon – 1:00 p.m.

  1. Engine Company Ops, cont.
  2. Search and Rescue, cont.
  3. Vehicle Extrication, cont.
  4. Ventilation, cont.
  5. Grain Elevator Fires

Sunday Morning – 8:00 a.m.

  1. Oil Tank Fires
  2. Ethanol Fires
  3. Incident Safety Officer
  4. Wildfires

Sunday Afternoon – 12:00 p.m.

  1. KSFFA Burn Trailer

For more information contact: Ron Ewing @620-366-5399, setrustee@live.com

or Chief Robert Jones @918-440-4438, cfdks911@gmail.com

  • These courses are offered at no charge.
  • These schools are open to all firefighters/EMS
  • The KSFFA furnishes medical insurance for all participants.
  • The KSFFA is not responsible for lost or damaged clothing or equipment.
  • If you desire to have Firefighter One or Two testing, this must be pre-registered through Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute.
  • The KSFFA offers fit testing with its porta-count machine at all regional fire school.

 

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Saving Those Who Save Others

Saving Those Who Save Others NVFC Topeka KS

 

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Steve Wells to Retire from Russell City Fire Department

By David Elliott
KRSL – September 21, 2018

On Monday, September 24, Russell City Fire Department Captain Steve Wells will retire after 26 years of dedicated service to the City of Russell and its citizens.

Captain Wells joined the Russell City Fire Department in 1982 as a probationary firefighter and has worked his way up through the ranks to Captain, a position he has held since 2011.

A come and go reception honoring Wells’ service to the Russell City Fire Department will be held from 2 PM to 4 PM on Thursday, September 27 in the City Council Chambers. The public is invited to attend.

Wells will continue to work for the City of Russell as the Wastewater Treatment Plant Manager.

(Information courtesy Russell City Fire Department.)

 

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Passing of David Wickersheim

With profound sadness the City of Eudora Fire & EMS announces the passing of Training Officer David Wickersheim. TO Wickersheim courageously fought his battle for three years and now has been called home. His mission is complete. Our thoughts are with his family at this time. Arrangements are currently pending and will be posted when finalized.

City of Eudora Fire Department

 

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Person trapped in Haysville mobile home fire dies

KWCH – September 21, 2018

One person is dead after a fire ripped through a mobile home in Haysville overnight.

Firefighters responded to the 7800 block of south Laura around 2 a.m. on a report of a person possibly trapped inside a building fire.

When crews got on scene, the mobile home was fully engulfed in flames.

During a search of the home, crews found a person inside the home dead.

The name of the victim is being withheld pending notification of next of kin.

Investigators are still looking into what caused the fire.

 

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Press Release: Structure Fire, 2212 East 15th

At 3:05 PM, Thursday, September 20, 2018, city of Hays emergency dispatchers were notified of a structure fire at 2212 East 15th. The Hays Fire Department, assisted by Ellis County Fire Department Company 5, Hays Police Department and Ellis County EMS, was immediately dispatched.

Arriving firefighters found the house fully engulfed in flames. Fire crews placed 3 hose lines in service to control the flames.

The cause of the fire is being investigated by the Hays Police Department assisted by the Hays Fire Department and an investigator from the Kansas State Fire Marshal’s Office.

Five firetrucks and 17 firefighters responded. The last crew left the scene at 9:00 PM.

Your Hays firefighters would like to remind everyone to call 911 promptly when a fire occurs. Fires can grow and spread very quickly. Having the fire department on the way as soon as possible can help to limit the damage from a fire.

Ryan Hagans, CPM
Fire Chief
Hays Fire Department

Photos by Jolie Green

 

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KCK police chase ends in wrong-way fatal wreck

KSHB – September 20, 2018

A female passenger in a car eluding police died early Thursday morning in a multi-vehicle, wrong-way wreck on eastbound Interstate 70 near 57th Street.

Kansas City, Kansas, police officers observed a suspicious vehicle near 18th Street and Metropolitan Avenue at 12:19 a.m. on Thursday morning.

Patrol officers followed the vehicle to a dead-end street before the suspect vehicle made a U-turn.
Officers attempted to initiate a traffic stop and observed a driver as well an unresponsive female passenger.

As officers approached the vehicle, the driver put the vehicle in reverse then drove at the officers, striking the driver’s side door of a police car.

The ensuing pursuit crossed into Kansas City, Missouri, where KCK officers terminated pursuit as officers with the Kansas City, Missouri, Police Department picked up the pursuit.

The suspect vehicle returned to KCK with a KCPD helicopter continuing to pursue it.

Eventually, the suspect vehicle drove the wrong way on Interstate 635 and I-70.

When the suspect vehicle was traveling the wrong way on eastbound I-70, it crashed head-on into an oncoming car.

Chrissy Saale, 29, of Kansas City, Kansas, was pronounced dead at the scene, according to a Kansas Highway Patrol crash log.

The driver of the suspect vehicle, Collan Cross, 24, of Black Hawk, Colorado, and the driver of the other car were taken to the hospital. There is no word on the condition of those individuals, but the other driver’s injuries were described as minor.

Cross also was taken into custody and the KCK police will handle charges.

Wyandotte County Sheriff’s deputies also were involved in the chase, which was being investigated by the Kansas Highway Patrol.

Immediately after the crash, authorities shut down I-70 in both directions, but westbound lanes have been reopened.

Eastbound lanes reopened around 6 a.m.

 

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City approves purchase of ambulance

Concordia Blade Empire – September 20, 2018

Purchasing a new ambulance to replace Medic-5, which blew a head gasket, was approved by the Concordia city commission during its regular meeting on Wednesday.

The city will buy a 2017 Ford E350 with a V10 gas engine from Osage Ambulances at cost of $9,700. It is a remount demo unit which will carry the same warranty as a new unit.

Fire Chief Eric Voss reported to the commission that Medic-5, a 2010 Ford F350 with a 6.0L diesel motor, was returning from a call in Glasco when it started blowing white smoke and then locked up as it was pulled into the Fire Department/EMS building.

Estimated cost of repairs to Medic-5 is $6,000 for just the head gasket.

Voss said in the past two years the city has spent $7,000 in repairs on the unit and it has only been driven 9,000 miles.

“The guys don’t trust it to go anywhere. It is our last unit out,” Voss said.

Voss contacted Osage Ambulances and was informed it had the 2017 Ford demo.

Including Medic-4, the city has four ambulances serving Concordia and the surrounding area.

“The biggest thing we are running into is the transfers, and that is just health care today,” Voss said.

Voss said that this year, to date, Concordia has done 135 transfers to Salina and 191 total.

The busiest year was 2016 when the city made 203 transfers.

“I think we need to look at how we handle outside Concordia, and maybe go to the county and some of those towns and say we are running thin, and our equipment is getting miles on it and we are having to replace it, and the city can’t keep doing this just on its own,” Mayor Sam Sacco said.

Sacco said the city doesn’t mind providing the manpower and taking the time to do it, but when it comes to the equipment, help is needed.

“I don’t think the city can afford to keep furnishing equipment, and paying for it for the whole county,” Sacco said.

City manager Amy Lange said that the way the city does ambulance billings is that, whatever insurance or Medicare doesn’t pay for the ambulance runs, based on what is charged, then the rest is billed to a township in Cloud County based on a formula.

“A portion of that billing and a portion of the charges that we have does include a little bit that is supposed to pay for some of the equipment. It pays for personnel and supplies, but it also does pay for a little bit of equipment. So I think you are right. I think it is time to start talking to the county about increasing that a little bit, but we are sensitive to the fact that they are very sensitive to the amount they are getting charged,” Lange said.

Commissioner Chuck Lambertz said there needs to be an equitable sharing of the cost for the ambulance service provided by the city.

Commissioner Mark Matthew said it would be nice if the county had a line item in its budget to help pay for the equipment.

“I agree with Sam, I think the county has to step up, and maybe it has to be a line item in their budget,” Matthew said.

Medic-5 will be placed on Purple Wave for sale.

 

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No injuries reported in fire

By John Richmeier
Leavenworth Times – September 20, 2018

No injuries were reported as a result of a house fire in Lansing, a fire department official said.

The fire was reported at 5:33 p.m. Tuesday at 205 E. Mary St.

No one was home at the time. The fire was reported by neighbors, according to Todd Farley, chief of Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1.

When firefighters arrived, light smoke could be seen coming from a southeast corner of the one-story house.

Farley said the fire started on the outside of the home and burned into an exterior wall. He said the fire did not extend farther into the house.

Firefighters had to cut away siding from the house in order to extinguish the fire.

Farley estimated that the fire caused $2,500 in damage.

A neighbor used a garden hose to spray water on the fire before firefighters arrived.

Farley said this may have helped limit the fire’s damage. But he said firefighters discourage this “because it’s very easy to get hurt doing that.”

Farley said it appears the fire was the result of smoking materials being discarded in mulch.

He said the careless disposal of cigarettes causes a lot of fires across the country.

Farley urges people to properly dispose of smoking materials and cautions against discarding cigarettes in mulch.

 

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No injuries Thursday in house fire in Ward Meade neighborhood

By Phil Anderson
Topeka Capital Journal – September 20, 2018

No injuries were reported after crews knocked down a smoky house fire early Thursday in the Ward Meade neighborhood of north-central Topeka.

The blaze was reported at 6:32 a.m. at a single-story residence at 106 S.W. Clay.

First-arriving crews reported a fire on the home’s porch. Firefighters a short time later found the blaze had made its way into the home’s attic, said Topeka Fire Department Battalion Chief Chuck Gatewood.

Firefighters were told upon their arrival that the home’s occupants had made it outside safely. Fire crews searched the residence to confirm no one was inside.

Crews “made a quick response with a quick knockdown,” and the fire had been declared out as of 7:30 a.m., Gatewood said.

A Topeka fire investigator was on the scene to determine the cause of the blaze.

 

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Darrel Brant of Isabel died as a result of injuries from a Pratt County accident

Pratt Tribune – September 20, 2018

According the Kansas Highway Patrol online crash long, 74-year-old Darrel Brant, of Isabel, was injured in the wreck that shut down U.S. Highway 54 for several hours on Wednesday. Friends and co-workers at Hamm Auction and Real Estate confirmed that Brant passed away as a result of his injuries later Wednesday afternoon.

An Isabel man, 74-year-old Darrel Brant, died from injuries sustained in a two-vehicle accident east of Pratt at 9:25 a.m. on Wednesday morning.
Brant was northbound on Northeast 100th Avenue in a 2005 white Chevrolet Silverado 1500. At the intersection of U.S. Highway 54 and NE 100th Avenue, Brant failed to yield to a westbound 2015 red Ford pickup towing a camper on U.S. Highway 54, driven by 72-year-old Dan Hoeper of Livingston, Texas, according to the Kansas Highway Patrol online crash log.
The Silverado hit the rear drivers-side panel of the Ford causing severe damage to both vehicles and demolishing the trailer. The Ford and the remains of the trailer came to rest on the north shoulder of U.S. Highway 54 while the Silverado stopped facing southwest on the westbound lanes of U.S. Highway 54 in the north lane.
Pratt County EMS transported Brant to Pratt Regional Medical Center. He was not wearing a seat belt.
Hoeper and his passenger 69-year-old Katherine Hoeper, also of Livingston, Texas were listed as not injured. Both were wearing seat belts at the time of the accident.
Westbound traffic was rerouted north on NE 100th Avenue through Cairo until the accident scene had been processed several hours later.

 

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Man steals converted ambulance, crashes, kills man

By Sarah Plake and Steve Kaut
KSHB – September 20, 2018

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A hit-and-run driver is on the loose after stealing a converted ambulance and killing a man in a crash.

The incident began about 11 a.m. when the suspect stole the truck with its 16-foot trailer on the back, police said.

The business owner’s son followed the stolen truck.

The suspect and son stopped at a traffic light at West 95th Street and Mission Road in Overland Park.

The owner’s son walked up to the stolen truck and told the suspect to get out.

The suspect sped away from the intersection.

He drove into Kansas City, Mo., and ran a red light at Bannister Road and Summit Street.

Police said the truck crashed into a car there, but the suspect kept going east on Bannister Road.

He raced through the red light at Wornall Road, striking a Ford F-150 pickup truck driven by an 80-year-old man.

The force of the collision sent the pickup truck spinning in the air and the truck landed on its side.

The pickup truck hit a sign while spinning and that sign slammed into another car stopped at the red light.

The driver of that car went to a hospital with minor injuries.

The stolen truck hit police and finally stopped.

The suspect jumped out and ran.

Police continue to search for him.

 

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Large fire shut down U.S. 24 west of St Marys

By Nick Viviani
WIBW – September 20, 2018

A large fire in a Pottawatomie Co. cornfield Wednesday afternoon shut down a stretch of U.S. 24. The road reopened shortly before 4 p.m., but firefighters were expected to be on hand for a while.

Pottawatomie Co. Fire Chief Jared Barnes said a tractor and grain cart caught fire around 3 p.m. in a corn field about 1.5 miles east of Belvue, on the south side of the highway. The fire then spread across approximately 160 acres of corn stubble and uncut corn.

The smoke was so thick that visibility on the highway was down to zero.

Barnes said firefighters were also concerned the blaze may jump across the highway. Both directions were closed from St. Marys to Shoeman Road, east of Belvue. Kansas Highway Patrol troopers responded to the fire to help direct traffic.

In all, fire departments from Pottawatomie Co., St Marys, Belvue, Wamego, and St. George responded to help contain the flames.

 

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Townships respond to Lansing

By John Richmeier
Leavenworth Times – September 20, 2018

Attorneys say the Delaware and High Prairie township boards want Leavenworth County Fire District No. 1 to remain intact. And the township boards will oppose efforts by the city of Lansing to disband the fire district.

That is the message in a letter signed by attorneys for Delaware and High Prairie townships.

The letter, which is dated Sept. 14, was addressed to Greg Robinson, who is the city attorney for Lansing.

Currently, Fire District No. 1 provides services to Lansing and Delaware and High Prairie townships. The fire district is governed by a board made up of members who were nominated by Lansing and the two townships.

In June, the Lansing City Council sent a letter to various parties involved in the fire district. The letter expressed the council’s intent to withdraw from the fire district at the end of 2019 and split the district’s assets with the other parties. The city plans to operate its own fire department in the future.

The more recent letter addressed to Robinson was intended as a response from the townships. The letter was written by Timothy Orrick, an attorney for Delaware Township. But it was signed by both Orrick and Chadler Colgan, an attorney for High Prairie Township.

The letter states the preferred outcome of the townships is for the fire district to continue to operate under the terms of an existing interlocal agreement.

The letter argues that the city must petition the Leavenworth County Commission to terminate the interlocal agreement.

“Disorganization is not mandatory by the Board of Commissioners merely upon the submission of a petition, but rather is within the discretion of the Board after considering the best interests of the health, safety and general welfare of the District’s citizens,” Orrick wrote in the letter. “If the City of Lansing indeed submits such a Petition, both Townships would exercise all procedural and substantive legal means available to oppose the Petition before the Commission, and if necessary thereafter through judicial review.”

Orrick went on to state that if the city is successful in disorganizing the district, the two townships will not contract with the city for fire department services.

“Instead, they will seek to either reorganize the current District, and/or seek to join with other like-minded entities to organize a new District,” Orrick wrote.

Dean Moburg, chairman of the Fire District No. 1′s governing board, said he read the letter aloud Monday during a board meeting.

A phone message seeking comment from Robinson was not immediately returned Tuesday afternoon.

 

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Two dead in crash in Bonner Springs, police say

KSHB – September 20, 2018

Two people died in a crash Wednesday afternoon in Bonner Springs, Kansas, according to police.

The crash occurred on Kansas 32 westbound near 115th Street around 4 p.m. and brought police, fire department and ambulance crews to the scene.

The highway was reduced to one lane of traffic westbound just west of the entrance to the Lake of the Forest community, city officials said.

Late Wednesday, Bonner Springs police identified the victims as Anthony Eisele, 34, and Amy Toth, 29, both from Kansas City, Kansas.

An initial investigation indicates the wreck involved one car that was traveling westbound on K-32 when it left the roadway, struck a tree and caught fire.

 

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First responders to practice hazardous materials procedures during exercise at Lawrence airport

Lawrence Journal World – September 19, 2018

A number of agencies will participate in an emergency exercise Thursday morning at Lawrence Municipal Airport.

The exercise, scheduled from 8:45 a.m. to noon, will simulate a transportation-related release of hazardous materials at the airport in North Lawrence, according to a press release from Bob Newton, of Douglas County Emergency Management. Lawrence-Douglas County Fire Medical personnel will practice hazardous materials management and how to handle patients. The Lawrence hospital will activate its incident command center to practice a surge in patients and its patient-decontamination procedures.

The Lawrence Police Department, Douglas County Sheriff’s Office, Douglas County Emergency Communications, Douglas County Emergency Management, Lawrence Municipal Airport, Hetrick Air Services and Lawrence Municipal Services and Operations will also participate in the exercise.

The exercise is one of two that a U.S. Department of Transportation grant will fund. Local first-responder agencies will also conduct a mass-casualty exercise on Oct. 9.

 

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County Fire Cause Extensive Damage to Rental Property

By Jeremy Bohn
KSAL – September 19, 2018

The Saline County Sheriff’s Office and Rural Fire District No. 5 responded to a house fire in rural eastern Saline County on Tuesday.

Saline County Sheriff Roger Soldan tells KSAL News that a deputy got the property at 3440 Kipp Rd. at 3:30 p.m. Tuesday, and saw smoke coming from the home.

Rural Fire District No. 5 responded and contained the fire from spreading, however, the kitchen in the house was destroyed from the blaze.

Soldan says that the brick house is a rental property owned by Randy White of New Cambria, however, it had been vacant since Sunday, Sept. 16, when the previous tenant moved out.

Authorities believe that the fire was caused by an electrical outlet in the kitchen. Damage is estimated at $10,000.

 

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First responders save woman’s life at Walmart

By Brian McCauley
Miami County Republic – September 19, 2018

Paola Firefighter Justin Fields and Paola Fire Chief Andy Martin. Photo by Brian McCauley

When off-duty Paola firefighter Justin Fields first arrived at the garden center inside Paola’s Walmart on the afternoon of Aug. 3, the situation did not look good.

A woman was on the ground and unresponsive, and when Fields realized she wasn’t breathing and didn’t have a pulse, he immediately began administering CPR.

Paola police officers and members of Miami County Emergency Medical Services were dispatched to the scene at 2:46 p.m., and officer Dustin Hawkins was one of the first to arrive.

Hawkins immediately began hooking up an AED unit to the woman while Fields continued to administer CPR. The AED indicated that a shock was needed, and it was given.

When EMS workers arrived shortly thereafter, they found that the woman now had a pulse, and she was rushed to Olathe Medical Center, where she underwent emergency surgery for a severe heart attack.

“According to EMS personnel, the victim would not have survived if not for the quick actions of both the police officer and firefighter,” Paola Police Chief Don Poore told Paola City Council members during their Sept. 11 meeting.

Poore also said he wanted to publicly thank the Baehr Foundation for providing funding the department has used to put AED units in patrol vehicles.

“This is the third life we’ve saved with AED units purchased by Baehr grants,” Poore told the council members.

Poore presented the Life Saving Award and uniform pin to Hawkins, with several of his fellow officers proudly looking on from the audience.

Paola Fire Chief Andy Martin then presented the Life Saving Award to Fields, and he too had a full house of firefighters in full uniform proudly watching him.

Lt. Chad Corbin of the Paola Police Department was the supervisor on scene during the Aug. 3 incident, and he nominated both Hawkins and Fields for the Life Saving Award based on their actions that day.

Both men received a lengthy ovation from council members and audience attendees.

 

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Fire destroys downtown home

KAKE – September 19, 2018

An investigation is underway after an early morning house fire in downtown Wichita.

Firefighters were called to a home around 1:15 a.m. Wednesday morning near Central and Wabash. When they arrived, they found a house fully involved in flames.

Crews were battled the fire for about 30 minutes and the home collapsed. They weren’t able to search the remnants of the house because of unsafe conditions.

No one was injured and firefighters are not sure whether anyone lives in the home.

 

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Simulator gives firefighters chance to practice driving

By Elly Grim
Liberal First – September 19, 2018

Photo by Elly Grim

“Come on now, what are you DOING?!”

“Be sure to pay attention in each direction, you don’t know what could be coming up behind you or on the side.”

“Oh come on, this guy hit me AGAIN!”

These were some of the many reactions from students and instructor alike during the Liberal Fire Department’s Emergency Driving Simulator training Saturday morning. Liberal firefighters took part in the training Friday, Saturday and Sunday and the mobile trainer, which is built with two driver stations similar to the cab and seats of a fire engine, allowed the firefighters the opportunity to operate in multiple scenarios day and night, fog, rain, snow and ice and other emergency and non-emergency scenario simulations.

“I had a great time, watching Joe’s reactions was probably the best part,” Liberal firefighter Jared Fox said with a chuckle after a training session Saturday morning.

“It was hard but it was a great experience for all of us,” fellow Liberal firefighter Joe Dinh added. “We put ourselves in the worst conditions so we can test ourselves. Then with the simulation itself it’s great to be able to do that stuff and test everything out before it all actually happens.”

The simulator is owned and operated by the University of Kansas Fire & Rescue Training Institute, according to additional information from Liberal Fire Chief Kelly Kirk, and was funded via an Assistance to Firefighters Grant (AFG) in 2015 and valued at approximately $450,000. Instructors for the Saturday morning training were Mike Cook and Greg Standard. Those in attendance Saturday morning gave their praises for the program.

“Honestly, the best thing was how realistic it was. People actually pull stuff like what we had to deal with in the simulation, like people will u-turn right in front of you and turn out in front of you,” Fox said. “It just shows a lot of the stuff in this actually happens to us.”

“We were out here last year with our basic program and we’re here again now for our intermediate program and adding weather to the simulation,” Cook said. “It’s very informative to them and us how they react to the weather and other unfavorable conditions because it’s not always sunny and daytime out there for a call. It’s very helpful for us to gain that feedback from them and watch their reactions and be able to react. It reinforces positive habits and they get to make mistakes they know they won’t make in the future since they’ve seen how that could potentially play out. It’s a great learning experience and a lot of people who drive don’t fully look around at their surroundings and they need to learn about that too.”

The firefighters participating in Saturday morning’s training session said it is important for training similar to what they experienced to take place.

“We pretty much become a rolling projectile. Our job is to protect the public and in some situations, that means also protecting them from us when we have to go full lights and sirens,” Liberal firefighter Franklin Guillen said.

“Exactly, it helps out with our daily truck checks and driving so we don’t become complacent and not fully paying attention,” Dinh added. “Sometimes we don’t fully keep in mind we’re driving such a huge piece of equipment, so this helps keep us on our toes.”

“What we do is provide training so we can simulate actual driving events and if they do have a mishap of some type, it’s better it happens on the simulator instead of a multi-thousand pound expensive piece of equipment,” Cook added. “It helps reinforce good habits and hopefully we can also help correct some habits that need work. In the basic program, it was all dry pavement and there weren’t really any obstacles, so they were basically just learning how to react to traffic and drive accordingly. With this part of the program, they’re not only reinforcing the basic program stuff but also taking into account the changing weather conditions like snow and rain and being in the dark.”

All three firefighters also agreed it provides some insight into helping train new firefighters.

“It’s really a great thing this came around when it did because Joe’s only been with us for a couple months now and this is great for him to do,” Fox said. “There’s a reason this is the second time they’ve been out here and hopefully they’ll be back again.”

“Yeah, it’s definitely beneficial for new people to get an idea of what hazards can be out there,” Dinh added. “There’s not a single thing in this simulation we haven’t seen before.”

Cook also said it was a great experience working with the Liberal Fire Department.

“We’re happy for the opportunity to come back out here and train these guys, not everyone welcomes extra training as much as Liberal does,” Cook said. “We thank the department for the opportunity to come out here and work with them.“

 

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2nd teen dies after SUV crash into Kansas creek

Hays Post – September 18, 2016

The second of two teenagers trapped inside an SUV that landed upside down in an Atchison County creek on Sunday has died.

Sixteen-year-old Regan Moger, of Houston, Texas, died Tuesday at the University of Kansas Hospital, where she was flown after the wreck.

Moger was a passenger in an SUV driven by 16-year-old Zachary Armontrout, of Rushville, Missouri, who died Monday. Three other students in the car escaped serious injury when the vehicle went into Independence Creek.

All the teenagers were students at Maur Hill-Mount Academy Catholic High School in Atchison.

The school confirmed Moger died Tuesday while surrounded by loved ones.

Atchison County Undersheriff Toby Smith said the vehicle crashed through a guardrail before landing in the creek.

 

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Truck for Sale

Valley Falls Jefferson County Fire District #11 has the following for sale:

1980 International
DT 466 Diesel Engine
Automatic Transmission
1600 gallon poly tank
2000 gallon portatank
18hp Vanguard Waterous pump motor

$10,000 OBO
any questions call 785-640-3272

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Salute The Badge: First responders to Manhattan flooding rescue 152

By Marleah Campbell
September 18, 2018 – WIBW

When 6 to 10 feet of floodwater swamped parts of Manhattan, first responders answered the call to help.

“We quickly transitioned from notifications to evacuations,” Micah Hydeman, Captain, Manhattan Fire Department, said. “That was the fastest moving water I’ve ever seen.”

Initial preparations for the incoming weather began at 3:30 a.m.. From there, the situation developed rapidly.

“Within about an hour’s time, it really escalated. Travis Schulte, game warden for Pottawatomie County, said. “It went from standby, to we need boats and manpower here now.”

For some, these heroic operations were done with little sleep.

“I actually work night shift, and I was on the night before. I got home about 7 a.m., went to bed around 7:15, and my phone rang at 8:12,” Tyler Garver, sergeant for the Pottawattamie County Sherriff’s Office, said. “And I think I got home at 8 p.m. that afternoon. So it was a very long day for me, almost 24 hours.”

The operations weren’t just physically taxing. Manhattan Fire personnel also were coping with the passing of one of their own. Captain Wayne Braun lost his battle with cancer just over a week earlier.

“The day started actually like with Captain Braun’s passing, and so we had him come through the city and we saw him off to the funeral home, Drew Taylor, Manhattan Fire Department, said. “Captain Braun was heavily involved in rescue, and so it was kind of ironic that we just sent him off, then we were going to have one of the more significant rescues within Manhattan’s history.”

Despite the physical and emotional exhaustion, first responders successfully rescued 152 people and 24 pets with no major injuries.

“That number of people being affected on that day in those environments and no one coming out in the hospital is remarkable.” Hydeman said.

The events left lasting lessons, even for a ten-year veteran like Cole Minton.

“Losing Captain Braun, he was my captain for a couple years, and then with the memorial of 9/11 and the events on Labor Day in Manhattan, it has been quite a week emotionally,” Minton, Manhattan Fire Department, said. “But I like to take solace in the fact that sacrifice and the grief that kind of comes with this last week gives more meaning to the good moments that you have, and that’s what I think this week has been mainly about.”

 

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Boot Block raises funds for Muscular Dystrophy

Ottawa Herald – September 18, 2018

Photo by Bret Cary

The newly-formed Northwest Fire District participated in this years Muscular Dystrophy Association Boot Block. Members from the Centropolis and Pomona communities stood in front of the fire station in Pomona on highway K-68 collecting money to donate to the cause. The fire district raised a record $1,727.85. The firemen have been collecting funds for MDA since 1987, raising a total of 38,912.30.

 

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Two pets rescued from a southeast Topeka house fire

By Kion Hudson
WIBW – September 18, 2018

Video

No one was injured in a southeast Topeka house fire Monday night.

Topeka Fire received a call around 8:10 pm about a garage fire in the 1200 block of SE Republican Avenue.

When crews arrived, they found a garage fully engulfed, with fire spreading to a nearby home.

TFD says a woman was able to escape from the home. She did not appear injured, but was taken to an area hospital as a precaution.

Crews rescued two pets from the home. They were taken to a local shelter.

Topeka Fire is trying to determine the cause of the fire.

 

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NW Kansas teen dies in rollover accident

Hays Post – September 18, 2018

One person died in an accident just before noon Monday in Thomas County.

The Kansas Highway Patrol reported a 2004 Hyundai Elantra driven by Reata Pinkerton, 17, Russell Springs, was southbound on County Road 11 ten miles south of Levant.

The vehicle left the roadway to the right and the driver overcorrected.

The vehicle came back across the roadway, entered the east ditch and rolled an unknown number of times before coming to rest in a stubble field.

Pinkerton was pronounced dead at the scene and transported to Baalman Mortuary. She was not wearing a seat belt, according to the KHP.

 

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GBFD participates in 9/11 Stair Climb

By Russell Edem
Great Bend Tribune – September 17, 2018

It is not every day you get to honor someone who died is a tragic event, but two Great Bend firefighters had that opportunity last weekend by participating in the annual 9/11 Memorial Stair Climbs. Fire Chief Luke McCormick attended an event in Kansas City, Kan., while firefighter Cameron Benefiel attended one in Wichita with his father, Wichita firefighter Thomas Benefiel. On Sept. 9, each of them climbed the equivalent of the 110 stories of the World Trade Center.

The 9/11 Memorial Stair Climbs are not timed race events, but a way for firefighters and the community to honor and remember the Fire Department of New York (FDNY) firefighters who selflessly gave their lives so that others might live, according to information from the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation. Each participant pays tribute to one FDNY firefighter by name as well as to all of the 343 FDNY firefighters who died responding to the terrorist attacks of Sept. 11, 2001.

“This is such a great event,” Benefiel said. “It was a great honor to do this with my father to honor those that passed during 9/11. It was a bit a challenge, but I prepared myself for the event.”

The proceeds of these events help the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation create and maintain programs that support fire service survivors. Proceeds of the 9/11 Memorial Stair Climbs provide assistance to the surviving families and coworkers of the 343 firefighters who made the ultimate sacrifice on September 11, 2001.

“I had the honor to participate in the 9/11 Memorial Stair Climb event in Kansas City to pay tribute to the firefighters that died during 9/11,” McCormick said. “This is the eighth year that this event has been held in Kansas City. We are looking forward to do it again next year.”

National Fallen Firefighters Foundation

Congress created the National Fallen Firefighters Foundation (www.firehero.org) to lead a nationwide effort to honor America’s fallen firefighters. Since 1992, the non-profit Foundation has developed and expanded programs that fulfill that mandate.

Its mission is to honor and remember America’s fallen fire heroes and to provide resources to assist their survivors in rebuilding their lives and work within the fire service community to reduce firefighter deaths and injuries.

 

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Teen dies, another ‘critical’ in Atchison crash

By Mary Meyers and Marcus Clem
News Press Now – September 17, 2018

Photo by Mary Meyers

A teenager died and another remains in critical condition after their car Sunday careened into a creek near a bridge in rural Atchison County, Kansas.

Atchison County Undersheriff Toby Smith announced Monday morning Zachary Armontrout, 16, of Rushville, Missouri, died earlier in the morning after being evacuated by medical helicopter to a Kansas City-area hospital. Regan Moger, 16, of Houston, Texas, remains in critical condition from the crash.

Three others, Phillip Saragusa, 16, of Atchison, Kansas, Aurora Dericotte, 14, of Stilwell, Kansas, and Hamilton Snyder, 14, of Capitola, California, are reported to have escaped the vehicle without significant injury after it entered Independence Creek about two miles north of Atchison. According to Smith, all of the teens are enrolled students of Maur Hill-Mount Academy, a Catholic boarding high school in Atchison.

On Sunday, Smith said at the scene that first responders extracted a gray sedan from Independence Creek, believed to have struck an object at the bridge over the creek at about 2:30 p.m. Sunday. The vehicle hit the object at high speed and entered the water and became inverted at some point during the incident. The car is believed to have been submerged in the creek for about 30 minutes before first responders managed to extract it, rescuing Armontrout and Moger.

Atchison County EMS transported the injured pair to Atchison Hospital. The medical helicopter took them on to Kansas City from there, before Armontrout died of his injuries Monday morning.

 

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Donald Lee Smith

Donald Lee Smith, 90, of Oakley, died Wednesday, September 12, 2018, at the Logan County Hospital, in Oakley. He was born December 8, 1927, in Logan County, KS, to Earl and Edna (Holmes) Smith. Don grew up on a farm west of Monument KS. He graduated from Monument High School in 1945. He served in the United States Air Force, flying in the Korean Conflict. Don married Elaine Jennings on August 8, 1946, in Colby, KS and they recently celebrated 72 years of marriage. One child blessed this union, Robert “Bruce” Smith, who was born on April 2, 1955.

In June of 1960, Don and his brother Stan opened S&S Body Shop, in Oakley. Don was known region wide as the radiator repair specialist. He enjoyed jeeping, riding motorcycles and working on his #5 stock car. He also acquired his pilots license and purchased a plane with his brother Stan. Don was very well known and liked throughout the community- he was considered a bit of an ornery prankster at times. Don served on the VFW, E.M.S., Oakley City Council and the Oakley Fire Department for 31 years and was Fire Chief for part of that time. In addition, Don was a member, deacon and elder of the Oakley Christian Church

Don was preceded in death by his parents; son Robert “Bruce” Smith and brother-in-law Robert Randle.

He is survived by his wife Elaine; brother Stanley (Virginia) Smith, of Oakley; sister Phyllis Randle, of Wichita and many nieces, nephews, and great nieces and nephews.

Cremation was chosen. Family will receive friends on Sunday, September 16, from 2-4:30 p.m. at Baalmann Mortuary, Oakley. Memorials are suggested to the Don Smith Memorial Fund, in care of Baalmann Mortuary, PO Box 204, Oakley, KS 67747.

 

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1 killed in Gove County crash

By Annette Lawless
KAKE – September 17, 2018

One person has died in a crash Saturday night in western Kansas.

The Kansas Highway Patrol says a vehicle was heading east on I-70, about 4.5 miles east of U-40 in Oakley, before 8 p.m. Saturday. The driver briefly drove into the median, and then came back onto the road, over-corrected and ended up in the south ditch. The vehicle came to a rest on its roof.

At least one person died as a result of the accident.

 

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1 dead, 1 hospitalized after motorcycle crash

Hays Post – September 17, 2018

One person died in an accident just before 2p.m. Saturday in Marshall County.

The Kansas Highway Patrol reported a 1997 Harley Davidson driven by Cameron Dodds, 47, Washington, Kan., was eastbound on K9 one mile west of K99 in Frankfort.

The motorcycle traveled across the westbound lane, entered the north ditch and overturned several times.

A passenger Diane Thompson, 50, Sterling, NE., was pronounced dead at the scene and transported to Kinsley Mortuary.

Dodds was transported Bryan Medical Center West in Lincoln.

They were not wearing helmets, according to the KHP.

 

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Authorities investigate attempted aggravated arson at fire station in KCK

By Zoe Brown
KCTV 5 – September 17, 2018

Police in KCK are investigating after someone tried to firebomb one of the city’s fire stations.

It happened overnight at station three, at the corner of 4th and Kansas.

The police chief said a man threw a gas can with a rag stuffed in the nozzle at one of the garage doors.

A firefighter had heard something hit the garage door and then he saw someone running away.

When he checked, he found the gas can mentioned above and saw the rag was no longer on fire.

The police arrested a suspected nearby who was in possession of similar gas cans.

That person could face aggravated attempted arson charges.

 

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Garden City man killed in Pawnee County accident

Garden City Telegram – September 17, 2018

A 53-year-old Garden City man died Friday night from injuries he sustained in a single-vehicle accident about 1 mile east of Rozel on Kansas Highway 156 in Pawnee County.

Evan William Hopkins, 16, of Garden City, was driving a 2018 Jeep Wrangler east on K156 at about 5:27 p.m., when for unknown reasons he went left of center and entered the north ditch, according to the Kansas Highway Patrol. Hopkins’ vehicle hit a field entrance, went airborne and rolled one and a half times.

Both Evan Hopkins and his passenger, Todd Hopkins, were taken to Pawnee Valley Community Hospital, where Todd Hopkins later died from his injuries.

Evan Hopkins was transferred to Wesley Medical Center in Wichita. His condition was not available.

Both Evan and Todd Hopkins were wearing seat belts, according to the KHP.

 

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Trailer Fire

By Ray Nolting
Parsons Sun – September 14, 2018

An Old Dominion Freight Line trailer caught on fire on U.S. 400 near Jackson Road Thursday afternoon. The tractor was towing two trailers eastbound on the highway and the fire started in the second trailer near the front axle on the driver’s side. Labette Fire District No. 9 firefighters responded to and extinguished the fire, which closed U.S. 400 for about 30 minutes as emergency equipment and personnel worked the scene. The driver said the brake may have locked up on the wheels or the tires blew to cause the fire. Chunks of tire could be seen west of the fire on the highway for about a mile. The driver disconnected the second trailer, which was empty, and pulled away from it before firefighters arrived.

 

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GBPD and GBFD will make use of drone in 2019

By Russell Edem
Great Bend Tribune – September 14, 2018

The Great Bend Police Department along with the Great Bend Fire Department will have a new tool to add to their arsenal in the coming year: drones. The purchase of one unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV) is in the budget for 2019.

The technology has many uses for both departments, Fire Chief Luke McCormick said.

“We are excited to join forces with the GBPD when it comes to using these drones,” he said. “These drones and the technology that comes with them will help both departments in many ways.”

McCormick said the fire department will use the drone to help locate people within structures that are on fire and full of smoke, utilizing an infrared camera that attaches to it. UAVs can also be used to get aerial shots of brush fires and to locate obstacles that can keep vehicles from getting to a brush fire. The police can deploy drones for traffic control, accident scene investigations, and to help locate missing people, just to name a few possible uses.

“These drones have so many uses,” McCormick said. “This is a pretty significant tool to our toolbox. These drones can really help stop fires, find missing people. We can get information back in real time, which is very important.”

The topic of purchasing drones was brought up during a meeting between both departments and will be part of the 2019 GBPD budget. However, both departments will utilize the equipment. Employees in both departments will be trained on how to fly and operate UAVs.

According to McCormick, if the police department needs to use the drone, a trained pilot trained from the GBFD can be called to the scene — and vise versa. If the firefighters are busy with a fire scene, a UAV-trained police officer can operate the drone for the fire department.

The drone will be purchased in early 2019 and put into action after pilots have FAA licensing and all the proper training.

 

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Tom McGaughey Fire Service Award Nominations

On the evening of Thursday, November 21, 1968, a fire alarm was received from the Yingling Chevrolet Company of Wichita, Kansas. While fighting the fire, the roof collapsed and Fire Chief Tom McGaughey, Chief Fire Inspector M.O. Wells, and firefighters Dale J. Mishler and Jimmy Lee Austin were trapped under tons of burning debris and twisted steel.  For those fellow firefighters at the scene, as well as those who manned the stations that night, the tragedy and the horror of it all was etched in their minds forever.

In 1971, in memory of Chief Tom McGaughey, his fellow firefighters and this tragic event, an award was established in his name to commend a fire department and the firefighters whose bravery and courage went above and beyond the call of duty.

This year marks the 45th year of Tom McGaughey Fire Service Award, which will be presented at the Kansas State Association of Fire Chiefs annual conference in October.

Nominations

To nominate commendable firefighters for the Tom McGaughey Fire Service Award –

Nomination form

 

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Job Opening – Firefighter/Paramedic – Olathe Fire Department

Salary
$45,331.10 Annually
Location
Olathe, KS
Job Type
Full-Time, Benefits Eligible
Department
Fire
Job Number
201800153
Closing
10/12/2018 10:00 PM Central
Description
The Firefighter-Paramedic responds to fire alarms, medical emergencies, hazardous material incidents, urban search & rescue and other calls to protect life and property; to participate in fire and medical training, all hazards risk reduction and to maintain the station, firefighting and medical equipment.  Provides medical treatment at the paramedic level as described in the Johnson County Medical Protocols and Standard Operating Guidelines of the Olathe Fire Department.
Key Responsibilities
  • Respond to fire alarms with assigned company; lay and connect hose; maintain pumping apparatus; hold nozzles and direct water streams; raise and climb ladders; ventilate burning structures; enter buildings to evacuate occupants.
  • Perform search and rescue of individuals in hazardous environments including collapsed buildings, auto accidents, hazardous material spills, and confined spaces.
  • Obtain and preserve evidence at a fire scene; participate in determining fire origins and causes.
  • Operate all types of fire operation and rescue equipment.
  • Respond to emergency medical incidents; provide advanced and basic emergency medical procedures to the sick and injured as defined in the Johnson County Medical Protocols.
  • Must be proficient with medical protocols, all medical equipment and medications utilized by the Olathe Fire Department.  Must also be proficient with all fire department APG’s in reference to the Management of Controlled Substances.
  • Responsible for checking and maintaining all medical equipment and medications.
  • Respond to a variety of general emergency rescue calls including auto accidents, gas system leaks and animals in distress.
  • Provide training and instruction of special rescue skills; teach and demonstrate special techniques.
  • Inspect building structures for pre-emergency planning and compliance with fire codes; prepare reports and citations; explain City fire codes and fire prevention policies and procedures to the public.
  • Participate in fire drills; attend training sessions on fire fighting techniques, emergency medical care and the proper use of all equipment and related tools.
  • Obtain adequate continuing education units to maintain Paramedic Certification.
Experience & Education
EXPERIENCE AND EDUCATION GUIDELINES:
Any combination of experience and education that would likely provide the required knowledge, skills and abilities is acceptable. A typical way to obtain the knowledge, skills and abilities would be:
Experience:
Two years of firefighting experience and/or two years experience as a certified paramedic, preferable.
Education:
High school diploma or GED, National Registry or state paramedic certification and college level course work in fire science, fire administration or a related field.
Supplemental Information
  • Possession of, or ability to obtain a valid driver’s license – Non Commercial Class B or Other State equivalent.
  • Ability to obtain Kansas Paramedic certificate and/or National Registry Paramedic certificate.
  • Firefighter I or II certificates (preferred)
  • Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) certification; current within one-year at time of employment offer.
  • Fire Service Entrance Exam (FSEE) certificate.
Agency
City of Olathe
Address
City Hall 100 East Santa Fe

Olathe, Kansas, 66061

Phone
913-971-8774

 

 

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Job Opening – Firefighter/EMT – Olathe Fire Department

Salary
$40,300.00 Annually
Location
Olathe, KS
Job Type
Full-Time, Benefits Eligible
Department
Fire
Job Number
201800154
Closing
10/12/2018 10:00 PM Central
Description
The Firefighter-EMT responds to fire alarms, medical emergencies, hazardous materials incidents, urban search & rescue and other calls to protect life and property; to participate in all hazards risk reduction and training; and to maintain fire department facilities and firefighting equipment.
Key Responsibilities
  • Respond to fire alarms with assigned company; lay and connect hose; maintain pumping apparatus; hold nozzles and direct water streams; raise and climb ladders; ventilate burning structures; enter buildings to evacuate occupants.
  • Perform search and rescue of individuals in hazardous environments including collapsed buildings, auto accidents, hazardous material spills, and confined spaces.
  • Obtain and preserve evidence at a fire scene; participate in determining fire origins and causes.
  • Operate all types of fire operation and rescue equipment .
  • Respond to emergency medical incidents; analyze patient needs and administer basic emergency medical care; assist paramedics at medical emergencies.
  • Respond to a variety of general emergency rescue calls including auto accidents, gas system leaks and animals in distress.
  • Provide training and instruction of special rescue skills; teach and demonstrate special techniques.
  • Inspect building structures for pre-emergency planning and compliance with fire codes; prepare reports and citations; explain City fire codes and fire prevention policies and procedures to the public.
  • Participate in fire drills; attend training sessions on firefighting techniques, emergency medical care and the proper use of all equipment and related tools.
  • Obtain adequate continuing education units to maintain EMT Certification.
Experience & Education
EXPERIENCE AND EDUCATION GUIDELINES:
Any combination of experience and education that would likely provide the required knowledge, skills and abilities is acceptable. A typical way to obtain the knowledge, skills and abilities would be:
Experience:
Two years of firefighting experience is preferred.
Education:
High school diploma or GED.
Supplemental Information
  • Possession of, or ability to obtain a valid driver’s license – Non Commercial Class B or Other State equivalent.
  • Ability to obtain a Kansas EMT certificate and/or National Registry EMT certificate.
  • Firefighter I or II certificates (preferred)
  • Candidate Physical Ability Test (CPAT) certification; current within one-year at time of employment offer.
  • Fire Service Entrance Exam (FSEE) certificate.
Agency
City of Olathe
Address
City Hall 100 East Santa Fe

Olathe, Kansas, 66061

Phone
913-971-8774

 

 

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Fire breaks out at Finney County milk plant

KSN – September 13, 2018

Photo by Roger Redden

Garden City firefighters responded to a fire at the Dairy Farmers of America milk plant in Garden City Wednesday afternoon.

According to a company spokesperson, the fire broke out at the facility around 4:30 p.m. Heavy smoke could be seen coming from the roof.

All employees were evacuated from the building safely and no one was injured during the fire, according to a DFA spokesperson.

The cause of the fire is being investigated.

 

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