Archive for the 'Uncategorized' Category

Job Opening – Firefighter/EMT B – Ottawa Fire Department

Position Summary: Duties of the Firefighter/EMT include protection of life and property by combating, extinguishing, and preventing fires, as well as providing EMT care where needed. Work is performed under the direct supervision of the supervising officer, but requires thorough individual understanding of firefighting methods and EMT duties.

How to Apply: Complete On-Line Application at

More info – Firefighter EMT-B Feb 2018


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Frankfort, Kansas Woman Killed in SUV Accident

By Doug Kennedy
US92 – Feb. 19, 2018

A Frankfort, Kansas woman has died in a crash of her sport utility vehicle, in Pottawatomie County, Kansas.

The Kansas Highway Patrol identifies the victim as 65-year-old Stephanie Slifer.

The accident happened on Kansas Highway 13, east of Tuttle Creek Lake. Kansas Highway Patrol officials say Slifer’s 2007 Ford Edge was traveling south on Kansas 13, when the vehicle veered off the right side of the highway.

The vehicle overturned once, landing on its roof and coming to rest in a culvert, about 30 feet from the roadway.

The driver was found dead at the scene of the accident Saturday. The KHP reports the accident happened at around ten p.m., Friday.


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Crews respond to house fire in N. Wichita

KWCH – Feb. 19, 2018


Wichita fire crews were called to the scene of a house fire in the 1100 block of N. Ohio.

Crews were called to the scene at around 8:00 Monday morning.

Fire officials tell us no one was at home at the time of the fire and no one was hurt.

The house appears to be a total loss and firefighters say a nearby car was also damaged.

No word yet on a cause.


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A strategic plan

By Michael Stavola
Hutchinson News – Feb. 19, 2018

3rd Annual Fire Service Recruitment Day on Feb. 16th. Photo by Sandra J. Milburn

The Hutchinson Fire Department unveiled a strategic plan on Friday that details the findings of a $10,000 study and outlines the department’s future.

The 2018-2023 strategic plan drew 60 business owners, residents and community leaders, known as external stakeholders, for a survey back in December. An additional 30 HFD employees, or internal stakeholders, also weighed in for the study conducted by the Center for Public Safety Excellence, a nonprofit that supports fire services.

“We needed to hear what we are doing right, what we’re not and what we need to tweak,” fire chief Steve Beer said.

The external stakeholders, who will be invited back to hear the results before the end of April, ranked the top three priorities for the HFD as responding quickly to calls, proper training and fire prevention education.

Meanwhile, the HFD staff identified strengths and weaknesses within the fire department. Staff determined retention and recruitment as a recurring problem which the HFD hopes to address in its seven goals developed from all the feedback.

They are:


    • A recruitment/retention program to maintain adequate staffing.


    • A comprehensive training program that facilitates a member’s career path and professional development to provide the most effective services.


    • A sustainable strategy to improve the use of technology in the HFD.


    • Public education and community outreach programs that provide a consistent message and pushed out timely information.


    • A comprehensive and effective firefighter health and safety program to equip HFD firefighters to do their job, and lead a healthy and well balanced professional and private life.


    • Improve the fleet maintenance program to provide transparency, accountability and quality.


    • Prepare for, pursue, achieve and maintain international accreditation.


Each goal has subcategories within it and a time frame as well as way to measure the success of each section. Beer said the HFD will use its resources to better address priorities discovered by the study.

The entire study can be viewed here.


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Smoke in the air

By Jason E. Silvers
Fort Scott Tribune – Feb. 19, 2018

Photo by Jason E. Silvers

Scott Township firefighters assisted the Deerfield Fire Department in battling the blaze, which began in Vernon County, Mo., and encompassed about 100 acres as it briefly spread into Bourbon County at Native and Osage roads. The smoke drifted southwest over Fort Scott, leaving a trail of ashes, as the afternoon progressed.


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Multiple fire crews battling large fire in northern Oklahoma

KSN – Feb. 19, 2018

Photo by Oklahoma Forestry Service

Multiple fire crews are being sent to battle a blaze in Oklahoma.

The fire is northeast of Freedom, Oklahoma.

According to the Minneola Fire Department, crews for Minneola, Ford County, Fowler, Ashland, Englewood and Kiowa County are all assisting with the fire. The fire started as a grass fire and then rapidly spread.

Oklahoma Forestry Services is also on the scene of the fire. As of Sunday night, the fire was at least six miles long. An air attack platform and a helitanker have been ordered.

The U.S. National Weather Service has also been monitoring the fire. The department says the fire has been burning for four hours in Woods County, Oklahoma. Officials say it has stayed consistently south of the border about 10-15 miles and has not shown signs of moving northward.


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Police identify two girls, ages 1 & 7, killed in crash on I-435 near State Line

By Shayla Patrick
FOX 4 News – Feb. 19, 2018

Two children are dead, and two others are fighting for their life after being involved in a crash on Interstate 435 near State Line Road.

Kansas Highway Patrol troopers said the crash happened after 4 p.m. on Sunday. A tractor-trailer traveling westbound struck the back end of a minivan that had slowed or stopped along I-435.

One adult and four children were inside that minivan at the time of the crash. Two young girls, Teresa Vasquez, 1, and Ruth S. Vasquez, 7, died from their injuries. The other two children, boys ages 9 & 14, were taken to Children’s Mercy Hospital where they are listed in critical condition. These two boys have the same last name as the two little girls who were killed. The driver of the minivan, 37-year-old Angelica Hernandez-Valentin, was taken to Overland Park Regional Hospital and is also listed in critical condition. It is unclear whether anyone in the minivan was properly restrained.

The driver of the tractor-trailer, who is 71 years old, was also transported to a local hospital and is expected to survive. He was wearing a seatbelt.

“The hardest part for a trooper is to work those fatality crashes and to make that death notification to people’s family and when there’s a child involved or even multiple children, it’s even harder,” said Trooper Candice Breshears with the Kansas Highway Patrol.

All westbound lanes of 435 near State Line Road remained closed Sunday evening. They finally reopened just before 5 a.m. Monday.


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Junction City fire station gets much needed renovation

By Ann Olamiju
WIBW – Feb. 16, 2018


Junction City firefighters are taking matters into their own hands – and saving the city some money – by renovating their fire house’s living quarters.

The City was able to gather funds to help the firefighters with money for materials for the renovation and they provided the labor.

Junction City Fire Chief Terry Johnson said the entire Municipal Building is getting new plumbing throughout the entire building and the City was able to come with the funds for the updates.

“So basically we are buying the materials and the firefighters are doing the work of putting up the 2×4’s, putting up the sheet rock, doing a lot of the labor to remodel their living area,” said Johnson. “Firefighter lives here 24 hours a day.”

The renovations will include a female locker room and updated kitchen. Updates will be complete at the end of March.


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Vehicle total loss after Friday fire

By Ryann Brooks
Emporia Gazette – Feb. 16, 2018

A vehicle is a total loss after the Emporia Fire Department battled a stubborn fire Friday afternoon in Emporia.

The vehicle, a 2013 Smart Fortwo owned by Alfonso Rascon, was parked on the street at 825 Dove Run when it started smoking around 1:30 p.m.

“When we first got here we had a large column of smoke from a 2013 Smart car,” said Battalion Chief Rich Gould. “We got the fire out and then there was a big explosion from the car and it threw hot pieces up on some of the houses that were here in the neighborhood as well as some spot grass fires.”

Gould said a second engine was called to put out the hot spots and prevent more fires from developing. Firefighters thought they had put out the blaze when the car reignited, and additional trucks were called.

“We thought we had the fire out and the fuel cell underneath the car evidently leaked enough that it caught back on fire on us,” Gould said. “We had to call for more water and some Class B foam to help put out the fire.”

Gould said it was believed the fire started somewhere in the vehicle’s electrical systems. The vehicle was unattended at the time of the fire and no injuries were reported.

“(Rascon) went out and tried to start it and noticed it was acting funny,” Gould said, noting that Rascon said the lights in the car were flashing on and off. “He shut it off and got out and noticed there was smoke and fire underneath it and called 911.”

Gould said it takes roughly 3,000 gallons of water to put out a fire in a vehicle that size.


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2 dead in Netawaka house fire

By Nick Viviani
WIBW – Feb. 16, 2018

jackson co fire 2162018

Photo by Jackson County Sheriff’s Office


Two people are dead following a Jackson Co. house fire.

Jackson Co. Sheriff Tim Morse tells 13 NEWS firefighters responded around 10 a.m. to a home in the 400 block of Whiteway Street, in Netawaka.

Firefighters battled the flames for over an hour before getting the blaze under control, he said.

After the fire was out, emergency crews discovered the bodies of both individuals inside the house. Neither of them have been identified.

Investigators from both the Sheriff’s Office and the State Fire Marshal’s office have responded to the scene.


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$90,800 worth of damage due to a fire

Salina Post – Feb. 16, 2018

A man from Smolan woke up to discover his shed was on fire.

According to Undersheriff Melander on Feb. 15, at the 2800 block of W. Smolan Rd, Russell Jones, 55, of Smolan was alerted by a knock at the front door. A passerby saw that his shed was on fire.

Jones had started a burn consisting of hay around 3 p.m. earlier that afternoon. He extinguished the fire but it reignited and caught his shed on fire.

The loss was totaled at $90,800. Some of the items damaged were a fifth-wheel camper, a Harley Davidson motorcycle, a Mahindra tractor, a riding lawnmower, and other miscellaneous tools and items.

No one was injured.


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Three suffer smoke inhalation after small fire at Topeka Postal Service location

By Tim Hrenchir
Topeka Capital Journal – Feb. 16, 2018

Three people were treated for smoke inhalation after a small fire Friday morning at the U.S. Postal Service location at 1410 N.W. Gage Blvd.

Topeka firefighters and American Medical Response ambulance workers were called to the scene at 4:55 a.m., said a dispatcher for the Shawnee County Emergency Communications Center.

The patients were treated at the scene for minor smoke inhalation from a fire that ignited when small batteries were thrown into a trashcan, said a Topeka Fire Department supervisor at the scene.


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7 treated for carbon monoxide exposure

Wyandotte Daily News – Feb. 16, 2018

Firefighters rescued seven people Thursday night who were exposed to carbon monoxide in their home in the 3000 block of North 29th.

The residents called 911 at 11:11 p.m. Thursday complaining of dizziness, headaches and pain, according to a Kansas City, Kansas, Fire Department spokesman.

When crews arrived, they found high levels of carbon monoxide in the home, the spokesman stated.

Two adults, two toddlers and two teenagers were taken to a hospital for evaluation and treatment, according to the spokesman. They were treated and released.

The probable cause of the carbon monoxide exposure was unvented propane heaters, according to the Fire Department report.

According to information from the Fire Department, carbon monoxide is an invisible, odorless and colorless gas created when fuels such as gasoline, wood, coal, charcoal, natural gas, propane, oil and methane burn incompletely. Heating and cooking equipment that burn fuel are potential sources of carbon monoxide, as are vehicles or generators running in an attached garage.

At very high levels, 1,600 parts per million, headache, dizziness and nausea may occur within 20 minutes, and death within one hour for healthy adults, according to the information from the Fire Department.

At 800 parts per million, dizziness, nausea and convulsions may occur within 45 minutes, unconsciousness within two hours, and death within two to three hours. At 400 parts per million, headaches may occur after one to two hours in healthy adults, and it may be life-threatening after three hours. At 200 parts per million, there is a slight headache, fatigue, dizziness and nausea after two to three hours.

Those who have conditions such as emphysema, asthma and heart disease may be affected by lower concentrations of carbon monoxide, according to the information from the Fire Department. The victims’ age, health and activity level also are factors in the patients’ vulnerabilities.

The maximum allowable concentration for continuous exposure for healthy adults in any eight-hour period is 50 parts per million of carbon monoxide, in which there are no symptoms for healthy adults, according to the information from the Fire Department.

Carbon monoxide detectors are usually time-weighted and will sound an alert after a specific level of carbon monoxide is detected for a specific amount of time, according to the Fire Department’s information.


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Galena fires

By Tawnya Bach
KOAM – Feb. 16, 2018

galena fire 2162018

Article & More Pics

Five fires break out in Galena, Kansas overnight. Shortly after 11:00 p.m. both Galena and Baxter Springs fire departments responded to the fires, one of them located at the intersection of North Main Street and Clark which spread to a stack of railroad ties. The Galena Assistant Fire Chief says he believes all five fires were intentionally set. The fire is now contained and no injuries have been reported.


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One dead after jumping from car

Manhattan Mercury – Feb. 16, 2018

A woman was killed after jumping from a car Wednesday, Kansas Highway Patrol officials said.

The woman was in the passenger seat of a southbound vehicle jumped from the car and was hit by a second southbound vehicle at 5 p.m. on Kansas Highway 99 just south of Kansas Highway 18.

The woman died from her injuries. Both drivers were uninjured. KHP hasn’t identified anyone involved in the accident.

KHP investigators, as well as Wabuansee County Sheriff’s deputies, responded and reopened the highway after an hour and a half.

Calls to the KHP for further information Thursday morning were not returned.


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History of Pittsburg Fire Department & the 1938 Peter Pirsch Aerial

By Crawford County Historical Museum
Pittsburg Morning Sun – Feb. 16, 2018

On February 11, 1898 the City of Pittsburg instituted its first organized fire department with expenditures of $735.00. That amount helped fund four firefighters, one hook and ladder wagon, two horses and the outfitting and remodeling of the city’s hose house. The city’s fire combating system prior to 1898 consisted of volunteer firefighters selected from citizens who lived near the hose station. They used a hose cart that was kept at city hall. When the fire bell rang, volunteers would bolt from their work or homes and pull the hose cart to the blaze.

As the city began to grow, a second company was organized and a hose cart was purchased to provide protection for the south part of town. Progress in architecture brought higher buildings and necessitated ladders to reach higher rooftops. As the city expanded even further, runs became long and often firefighters were exhausted by the time they reached the scene of a blaze. Another team was organized at the central station and a truck with hooks, ladders and ropes was added to Station No. 1 on July 2, 1903 when Chief T.W. Howe was in office. On August 15, 1907, Station No. 2 was opened with three horses and a hose wagon. Residents of east Pittsburg, many of whom were employed at the smelters, also organized a firefighting company and they were provided with a horse and cart.

The City’s first Fire Chief was W.H. Holmes. Chief Holmes was paid a monthly sum of $40; the amount also paid to firefighters. Firewagon drivers were paid $45. Quarters were provided and firefighters were required to stay in them 24 hours a day. They, in fact, received only 1 entire day off each week. Chief Holmes resigned in 1902 when JT Atkinson was named acting chief. Tom Howe took over that same year as Fire Chief and served until 1917 when Gus Tessmer succeeded him. Howe again headed the Pittsburg Fire Department in 1933 and served as chief until he retired in 1939. Walter Campbell served as chief of the department until 1956, who was then succeeded by Elmer Fields. In 1981, Fields left and Chief William Scott filled the position. When Chief Scott retired in 2003, Don Elmer took over as Chief on September 4, 2003, retiring in 2009. At that time, Scott Crain became chief and retired in 2012.

Today, Mike Simons is the Chief of the Pittsburg Fire Department. Firefighters are still working out of 3 stations, the newest station being located at 911 W. 4th, which was opened in April of 2009. The Pittsburg Fire Department employs 33 Firefighters, 1 Fire Marshall/Safety Coordinator, along with Chief Simons.

It was in 1938 when the City of Pittsburg purchased the Peter Pirsch Aerial Fire Truck for a total of $12,240.00. The fire truck was delivered to Pittsburg by railcar from the manufacturing plant in Kenosha, Wisconsin. Chief Walt Campbell and firefighters were the first in the state of Kansas to use the hydraulic-operated ladder truck. It is equipped with a 65′ aerial ladder and 750 gallon-per-minute pump. The Peter Pirsch was used as a first response ladder truck until 1964, then as a reserve truck. The truck last saw active duty on June 27, 1979, at the Stereo Buff fire on North Broadway.

The Peter Pirsch Aerial was driven to the Crawford County Historical Museum on September 28, 1984 to be retired and for permanent exhibit. Everyone loves to see the firemen take the 1938 Peter Pirsch Aerial Fire Truck down Broadway during the Pittsburg State Homecoming Parade every year in October.


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Neighbors fear explosion sparked fire at Wichita home

By Greg Miller
KAKE – Feb. 16, 2018

Photo by KSN


Investigators say one person and several dogs got out of a house safely after it caught fire Thursday night. It happened in the 4500 block of Kimberly in north Wichita.

Crews got the call to respond after several neighbors saw the flames and heard what sounded like explosions just before 6 p.m.

“I came up stairs and heard an explosion,” said Micah Standley, a witness and neighbor. “I looked out the window and I saw fire so I came out the front door.”

The fire was so strong, a parked car’s panic alarm went off.

“I just saw the fire coming out of the back of the house,” he said.

Investigators say that inside it was even worse.

“There was a lot of fire inside,” said Battalion Chief Brad Boyd. “For awhile there was a downed power line in the back yard, so we had to keep crews out of the back yard.”

More than eight fire crews responded. At one point, they received calls that there were explosions inside. Chief Boyd couldn’t confirm that immediately afterward, but did tell KAKE News there were propane tanks inside.

The fire is still under investigation.


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Fire burns trailer to the ground in southeast Topeka

KSNT – Feb. 16, 2018

Photos by Grant Stephens

A camper trailer is completely gone after a fire burned through the structure late Thursday night into Friday morning.

The Topeka Fire Department responded to a call in southeast Topeka at 1600 SE 23rd St. around 11:50 p.m.

One person escaped the fire, according to TFD. Investigators have determined the cause of the fire to be accidental and caused by careless smoking. The total cost of damage is around $1,200.

TFD was able to contain the fire, and it did not spread to any other nearby structures.


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Job Opening – Firefighter/EMT – Junction City Fire Department

Job Position Announcement JCFD


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Wabaunsee Co. car fire spreads to nearby field

By Nick Viviani
WIBW – Feb. 15, 2018

A Thursday morning car fire sparked a grass fire along a Wabaunsee Co. road.

A deputy told 13 NEWS the car was heading east on Harveyville Road when the engine caught fire and the driver pulled over. The car was close enough to the ditch to set the nearby grass afire.

The deputy said they managed to keep the flames from spreading any further, getting it under control within a half-hour.

Several fire departments were called to the scene to help contain it.

Authorities have not said if anyone was injured.


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Rooks County man dies after truck vaults, rolls

Hays Post – Feb. 15, 2018

A Kansas man died in an accident just after 6a.m. Thursday in Rooks County.

The Kansas Highway Patrol reported a 2015 Ford F450 driven by Robert L. Bice, 59, Plainville, was eastbound on Kansas 18 Highway nine miles east of Plainville.

The truck traveled left of center to the north edge of K-18 and entered the north ditch. The vehicle struck a private driveway entrance causing it to vault. It impacted the ditch on the east side of the driveway and rolled onto its top.

Bice was pronounced dead at scene and transported to Brocks North Hill Chapel in Hays. He was properly restrained at the time of the accident, according to the KHP.


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Wellington Fire responds to residential structure fire this morning

By Adam Catlin
Wellington Daily News – Feb. 15, 2018

At 5:09 a.m. Thursday morning, Wellington Fire, assisted by Mayfield Fire, responded to a residential structure fire at 601 North Plum A and B. The structure was owned and occupied by Bob and Jeff Russell, with the other occupants being Jeraldine Reed and Betty Gragg.
Upon arrival, heavy fire conditions were visible on the rear of a one story wood frame duplex. The first on scene engine used a truck mounted deck gun to knock down flames, and then began using hose lines to extinguish the remaining fire. Both sides of the duplex were searched and occupants made it out safely due to neighbor’s notification. The fire damaged the exterior siding and windows of a home to the south. During a check for fire extension into the attic, a firefighter fell from approximately two feet off a ladder and cut a finger which required stitches.
Wellington Police Department, the Wellington Electric Department, and Kansas Gas were also on the scene to assist.
Fire loss is estimated at $50,000.


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Hays Fire Department fights Valentine’s Day structure fire on Vine

Hays Post – Feb. 14, 2018


Hays Fire Department crews are on the scene of a fire at a business on Vine Street.

At 12:30 p.m. Wednesday, HFD crews were attacking the fire at C&E Doors that appeared to be in the western portion of the building, located at 2004 Vine. Firefighters were pulling portions of the exterior off in an attempt to reach the source of the smoke.

As of about 1 p.m. Wednesday, the fire was reportedly extinguished.


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Double fatal crash closes U.S. 54 in Ford County

By Santiago Kahn
KSN – Feb. 14, 2018

The Kansas Highway Patrol said U.S. 54 is closed between Minneola and Bucklin due to a double fatal crash.

Trooper Mike Racy tells KSN News a pickup truck didn’t yield to an oil tanker. Both drivers died at the scene. There were no other passengers. The identities of the drivers hasn’t been released.

Westbound traffic is being detoured at Bucklin via U.S. 400. Eastbound traffic is being detoured at Minneola via U.S. 283.

The patrol urges you to use an alternative route. Traffic is expected to reopen in the next few hours.


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Crews extinguish brush fire Wednesday

By Phil Anderson
Topeka Capital Journal – Feb. 14, 2018

Photo by Phil Anderson


Topeka firefighters extinguished a brush fire that produced a large amount of smoke for a short time Wednesday morning along the Landon Trail just south of the downtown area.

Crews were sent at 10:23 a.m. to the fire, which occurred in an area of trees, brush and grass just east of 20th and S. Kansas Avenue.

Topeka Fire Department Battalion Chief Mark Brannock said the blaze was reported after a large amount of smoke was seen in the area.

Two engine companies, a brush truck and an aerial ladder truck responded to the scene.

Firefighters hooked up hoses to the trucks, drawing upon some 1,500 gallons of water to extinguish the blaze.

Railroad ties, tires and leaves were among items that burned in Wednesday morning’s blaze.

Crews had the blaze knocked down by around 11:15 a.m.

The total area that was scorched was about 25 yards wide and 25 yards long.

Brannock said someone apparently set some brush on fire on Wednesday morning. He said firefighters have been called “numerous times” to the same area along the north-south concrete Landon Trail.

“We were kind of worried about it spreading a little bit,” Brannock said. “But we’ve got good humidity today and a little moisture in the air, so it’s contained.”

No injuries or property damage were reported.


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Crews battle semi-trailer fire in North Topeka

By Corrine Dorrian
KSNT – Feb. 14, 2018

Photo by Nate Tacey


Topeka firefighters fought a semi-trailer fire in north Topeka Tuesday night.

It happened around 8:30 at Topeka Trailer and Container Storage, near Tyler & Paramore Street.

It’s unclear at this time how the fire started, but crews were able to put it out before it spread.

No one was injured in the fire.

HFD participates in ‘Get Alarmed Kansas’

By Becky Kiser
Hays Post – Feb. 14, 2018

There were no smoke alarms found in the residence of a Pratt woman who recently died after a Jan. 25 fire in her home, which also killed her four children.

Having a working smoking alarm reduces your chances of dying in a fire by nearly half, according to information provided by the Hays Fire Department (HFD).

HFD has a program to install free smoke and carbon monoxide (CO) alarms in homes by firefighters at no cost. The combination alarms are part of the “Get Alarmed Kansas” program provided by the State Fire Marshal. They have a sealed 10-year lithium ion battery for easier maintenance and don’t require batteries to be changed twice a year.

“To qualify you have to live within the city limits of Hays and be on a fixed or limited income,” said Firefighter Lucas Everett.

“We put one inside each living quarter. So if there are people living upstairs and downstairs in a dwelling, we can install two alarms,” Everett said. There’s no cost to HFD to participate in Get Alarmed Kansas.

Hays firefighters will also come to the homes of senior citizens or persons with limited mobility to check the batteries and function of existing smoke and carbon monoxide alarms. They can also install alarms purchased by residents.

“Properly installed and maintained smoke alarms can save lives and protect against injury and loss due to fire,” added Everett. The goal of “Get Alarmed Kansas” is for all Kansans to be protected by working smoke alarms in their homes.


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Manhattan’s airport was so successful they needed a new fire truck

By Ann Olamiju
WIBW – Feb. 14, 2018

The Manhattan Regional Airport (MHK) hopes to see its numbers soar like they did in 2017 – with more passengers taking flights. The airport broke records last year with its largest number of passengers ever.

With that growth, they must meet new FAA standards – which is why they purchased this new fire truck.

Manhattan Fire Captain David Graham said the truck is need to keep up with the growing airport needs.

“In order to provide the coverage we need for our current index level we are running into some issues with some older equipment,” explained Graham. “I believe our back up truck right now was from 1979 and it does not have that cling agent that is required by the FAA for certain index levels.”

Firefighters are training to become familiar with the truck by conducting hours of training.

“We’re all required 12 hours of training on the truck initially just to be able to operate it and part of that training involves basic operation of the truck and getting familiar with the controls things like that,” said Graham.

Once they finish, firefighters will be prepared to handle many types of aircraft emergencies.

“Say we had a cargo plane that had a fire on board we can put out that fire,” explained Graham. ” It also allows us to get that turret clear down to the ground and do a low angle attack whether it be for fire under the aircraft or a fire in the lower portion of the aircraft.”

If all goes as planned, the truck should be cleared to take off into service in about a month.

The new fire truck will be the main responding vehicle for airport emergencies. Officials say the truck cost more than $800,000.


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Crews fight another fire at old Joyland

KWCH – Feb. 14, 2018


A fire at the old Joyland Amusement Park is now under control.

Wichita firefighters were initially called out to a fire at Sowers Alternative High School around 4:30 p.m. Smoke could be seen blowing across I-135.

Crews soon learned the fire was on the Joyland property and cut a fence to get to a metal building where the fire was located.

High winds spread the fire to the grass and additional crews were called in to help fight the flames.

Crews fought the fire from outside the building because they believed it might collapse due to the damage.

Firefighters say they have developed numerous access points on the Joyland property from fighting multiple fires there.

The cause of the fire has yet to be determined. No one was hurt.


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From trash haulers to firefighters, 6-year-old Carson Hall left many friends

By Kathy Hanks
Hutchinson News – Feb. 14, 2018

Carson Hall’s place on the couch is empty now.

His father Matthew Hall sits on the middle cushion as if his child is still beside him. The iPad which helped entertain the 6-year-old as he lost his ability to walk, use his arms and talk is close by.

Carson, or Fire Chief Carson as he was known by the firefighters at the Hutchinson Fire Department, died Saturday at Hospice House from complications involved with diffuse intrinsic pontine glioma, a form of brain cancer

“It seems like he is just at Nana’s,” said his mother Lindsey.“It hasn’t sunk in yet that it’s forever.”

Carson began kindergarten at Morgan Elementary School, in August. He loved school, according to his parents. However, he lost his ability to walk by mid-November and they knew his cancer was progressing. Lindsey wanted her son at home with his younger brother Colton and the rest of his family. She knew their time was limited.

Back in 2016 Matt and Lindsey noticed the demeanor of their healthy son was changing. He was experiencing balance issues and began crying when he was left at daycare.

“I could look in his eyes and tell something was wrong. As a mom, I could tell,” Lindsey said.

He was diagnosed on May 12, 2016, with little hope. Doctors gave Carson 9 to 12 months to live. They learned there was less than one percent survival rate with this cancer. At Children’s Mercy, the Halls were told of clinical trials their son could participate in, but that would have entailed leaving the state or even the country.

“Once you get past the shock you ask what are we going to do?′ Matt Hall said.

They decided they would make the time they had special with Carson’s extended community of family and friends. Making the best of the time they had together became their priority.

He did undergo a round of radiation. The symptoms started to disappear and he became himself again. But they knew it was temporary.

“Our life from the time he was diagnosed was making memories,” said Lindsey. They sailed on three Disney cruises, including one through “Make a Wish Foundation.”

However, special memories happened right in his own community.

During the past two Kansas State Fair’s, Carson had free reign to ride the train and the yellow slide to his heart’s desire.

His parents have several concessions and grandparents Mike and Sandi Brackett own Brackett Concessions at the fairgrounds.

Matt and Lindsey even met and fell in love at the state fair. Their first concession was in the Prairie Pavilion. Carson had been coming to the fair since he was 9 months old.

The Hutchinson Fire Department developed a friendship with Carson. Training Chief Jesse Martin saw Lindsey Hall on TV asking people to send letters to Carson because he liked to receive mail.

“We had the mail delivered in a fire truck,” Martin said. “He took a shining to us and us to him and we made him one of our own.”

Carson was sworn in as fire chief for the day. “He touched many lives here and is part of our family at Hutchinson Fire Department,” said Fire Chief Steven Beer.

Ron King, with Stutzman’s Refuse, was Carson’s friend. It became a ritual to wait and wave to Ron every week, said Danae Wallace, a close family friend. Carson could be asleep, but if he heard King’s truck he had to be out there. Sometimes King would get out of the truck and talk to Carson. He brought him a toy trash truck and little blue dumpster.

When his motor skills began deteriorating for the second time the Hall’s opted for a second round of radiation and Carson responded. All summer he was running, jumping, and swimming doing all the things a 5-year-old does.

Carson survived 21 months with cancer. From the beginning, the Halls always believed the quality of Carson’s life was more important than the quantity.

The most difficult thing they did was to drive their son to Hospice House, knowing he would never return. But they found comfort in knowing their memories of Carson would not lead back to his death at home.

Instead, they have the memories of their son whose smile lit up his eyes.

“You could cover up everything but his eyes and you would know that he was smiling,” Lindsey said.


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Grass fire burns about 4 acres Tuesday on south side of Kansas River

By Phil Anderson
Topeka Capital Journal – Feb. 13, 2018

Photo by Phil Anderson

Fire crews spent a couple of hours extinguishing and controlling a grass and brush fire Tuesday on the south edge of the Kansas River near downtown Topeka.

Topeka Fire Department crews responded to the scene — just west of the Topeka Boulevard Bridge — around 11:35 a.m. Tuesday after a passerby called in the blaze.

Fire department officials said the blaze was burning to the west, or into the wind, and that it scorched approximately 4 acres of grass and brush immediately south of the river.

As the fire smoldered, a large amount of bluish, gray smoke was hovering above the river, with some of it drifting south and east toward the downtown area.

No injuries or property loss was reported in the fire.


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Fire crews respond to report of smoke in downtown restaurant building

Lawrence Journal World – Feb. 13, 2018

Photo by Chad Lawhorn

Lawrence firefighters responded to a report of smoke at a downtown restaurant and office building Tuesday morning.

Emergency crews were called to 719 Massachusetts St. just before 10:20 a.m., according to radio traffic.

Few details were immediately available. Fire trucks and an ambulance were parked in front of the building, and firefighters were congregated around the entrances to the building that houses Mass St. Fish House & Raw Bar and some offices. Firefighters were also in front of Ladybird Diner, next door at 721 Massachusetts St.

No smoke was visible from outside of the building.


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One dead after semi fire southwest of Emporia

By Chuck Samples and Brandon Peoples
KVOE – Feb. 13, 2018

Photo by Brandon Peoples


The Kansas Turnpike Authority has confirmed one person has died as part of a crash and fire southwest of Emporia on Tuesday.

Law enforcement and rescue crews from several agencies were called to Kansas Turnpike mile maker 119, eight miles southwest of Emporia, around 8:30 am after a semi crashed and caught fire, also leading to a grass fire north of the crash site.

Early indications are a semi crashed at mile marker 119, or roughly eight miles southwest of Emporia. The crash apparently led to a fire that destroyed the cab of the semi and also became a grass fire that spread north of the site.

Lyon County deputies and Kansas High Patrol have been on scene since before 9 am. Also, firefighters and rescue units from Emporia, Olpe, Chase County and Matfield Green were initially called to help with the call.


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House near Allen damaged by fire

By Chuck Samples
KVOE – Feb. 13, 2018


Photos by Chuck Samples

Fire damaged part of a house about 30 miles away from Emporia in northwest Lyon County on Monday, but authorities say the situation could have been much worse had the fire been allowed to sit a few more minutes.

Lyon County Deputy James Baker says deputies and fire crews from several agencies were called to 328 Road 370 shortly before noon.

The wood stove then got overheated and caught fire, eventually burning part of a wall on the north side of the house in addition to getting up into the attic.

Everyone inside the house was out when firefighters arrived. Crews from Allen-Admire, Americus, Miller and Dunlap were able to knock the fire down after about 45 minutes. Reading firefighters were also paged to the scene.


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Fire destroys north Baldwin City business

By Elvyn Jones
Lawrence Journal World – Feb. 13, 2018

Baldwin City Fire Chief Terry Baker said a Monday afternoon fire destroyed a more than 100-year-old building that was home to a north Baldwin City business.

Baker said the fire at CopperLeaf Gourmet Foods, 215 N. Sixth St., started about 5 p.m. Monday. The two-story wood-frame building that housed the business was a “total loss,” Baker said. There were no injuries from the fire, he said.

“The building was not occupied,” he said. “The people at the business had left 10 minutes before the fire.”

He was the first to arrive at the fire scene and found flames rapidly spreading through the building, Baker said. It appears the fire started in what used to be the living room of the building that was a residential home before it was converted to a business, he said.

“The southeast corner of the building was fully engulfed and there were flames in the second floor and attic,” he said.

He made the decision to have firefighters contain the fire rather than attempt to save the building, Baker said. A garage and storefront on the property were not damaged from the fire, he said

Units from Eudora Township, Palmyra Township, Willow Springs Township, Wakarusa Township and Wellsville fire departments responded to the fire, Baker said.

The fire was brought under control about 7 p.m., Baker said. Units remained on the scene at 9:30 p.m. Monday to ensure a few remaining hotspots didn’t reignite, he said.

The cause of the fire was still under investigation Monday night, Baker said.


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Rural fires destroy large barn, car

Hutchinson News – Feb. 13, 2018

Fires in rural Reno County on Sunday destroyed a detached garage and the car inside of it as well as a large barn with four-wheelers at another residence, according to Reno County Fire District No. 3.

Assistant Chief Gerald Wiens said the first call came in around 2:13 p.m. on a detached garage fire at 4704 N. Salem Road. The fire started with a spark from a charging battery for a 2011 Nissan Altima destroyed during the blaze, he said.

The other call to 4616 N. Yaggy Road came at 7:53 p.m. Wiens said additional support was requested from three other fire districts for a “fairly large barn fire.”

He said the two-story barn housed farm equipment, a few four-wheelers and hay inside. The cause of the fire was undetermined, he said.


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KCK firefighters rescue woman on second floor

Wyandotte Daily – Feb. 12, 2018

The Kansas City, Kansas, emergency dispatcher received a call from a woman whose house was filling up with smoke at 8:30 a.m. Feb. 12 in the 2700 block of South 65th.

The woman told the dispatcher that her dishwasher was on fire on the first floor and she was on the second floor, according to a Kansas City, Kansas, Fire Department spokesman.

The house was filling up with smoke and she could see flames, she told the dispatcher.

The dispatcher advised the caller to close the door and put something at the bottom of it to keep smoke out, according to the spokesman.

Firefighters arrived, attacked the fire, placed a ladder to the second story and brought the woman to safety, the spokesman said.

It was over by 9:10 a.m. and there were no injuries reported, the spokesman added.

Damage to the home was estimated at $20,000.


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Kansas Forest Service fire program coordinator to retire

By Jennifer Williams
Kansas State University – Feb. 12, 2018

Ross Hauck started his association with the volunteer fire service in Kansas in 1966, not as a fireman, but by building a fire engine. As a high school senior, he worked in the school agriculture shop to help build the first engine for the Miltonvale Fire District in southeast Cloud County. Following graduation in 1967, while farming and attending a local college, Hauck was an active member of that department.

When he and his wife Sharon moved to a township near Manhattan in 1972, the city of Manhattan provided fire protection, but in 1980 the residents needed to look for alternatives. Hauck was one of the key players that made the decision to join Riley County Fire District No. 1.

From 1971 to 2002, Hauck was a Kansas registered animal hospital technician, and many of those years were spent in the College of Veterinary Medicine at K-State. He always felt throughout most of adulthood he had a vocation and an avocation; his vocation being a technician and his avocation, his involvement in the fire service.

Completing his master’s degree in adult education in 1984, he became the training officer for Riley County Fire Department No. 1, a job he enjoyed for the next several years. When he joined the fire department in 1980, he became the battalion chief for Station 15, a position he held until 2010.

In 2002, Hauck joined the Kansas Forest Service as a fire prevention specialist. In 2004, he moved into the program coordinator role, a position he has held until his retirement.

“There are many things I will miss when I leave,” Hauck said. The Volunteer Fire Assistance grant program that he administered for most of his career at the Kansas Forest Service tops that list. “At the end of the day, if I helped a struggling department purchase a piece of equipment that kept fellow firefighters safe or suppress fire more effectively, it was good day.”

He acknowledged that he will miss the phone calls and visits with firefighters across the state and acquaintances he has made across the nation.

“I want the K-State family to know that I have appreciated the opportunities afforded me throughout my career, both at the College of Vet Medicine and the Kansas Forest Service,” Hauck said.

In retirement, he plans to spend time with family, enjoy his last years of eligibility on the RCFD No. 1, and watch his grandkids grow.

“There has been much growth in the fire program in the 15 years that I have been a part of it,” Hauck said. “I’m leaving the program in very capable hands with many new opportunities on the horizon.”

The Kansas Forest Service welcomes those wanting to join in the celebration of his service from 3-5 p.m. Friday, March 2, with a recognition at 4 p.m. at 2610 Claflin Road in Manhattan.


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1 dead after crash at car hits semi carrying logs in Leavenworth County

By Daniel Barnett
KCTV 5 – Feb. 12, 2018

Authorities in Leavenworth County say one person has died after an accident on Kansas Highway 7.

The crash happened at about 6:40 a.m. on K-7 near Marxen Road.

Authorities say a tractor-trailer hauling logs was trying to turn left from K-7 onto Marxen when a black sedan couldn’t stop on time and hit the truck.

The driver of the sedan was killed.

A second accident was also reported in the area. No serious injuries were reported.

One northbound lane and one southbound lane of K-7 have been closed.


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A leading example of service

By Kelly Breckunitch
Newton Kansan – Feb. 12, 2018

Photo by Kelly Breckunitch

There were no questions about what career path Newton native Doug Hoffman would be pursuing, it was just a matter of where he would be plying his trade — and, as fate would have it, he didn’t wind up far from his hometown as he joined up with the Halstead Fire/EMS Department as a volunteer firefighter while getting his degree in fire science from Hutchinson Community College.

“I was kind of looking to get some experience before I went on to try and get on the career department,” Hoffman said.

Halstead is where Hoffman has stayed, though, as a volunteer role in 2004 has transitioned to more leadership within the department — first as a captain and now, following a recent promotion, as division chief.

“It’s kind of more of a leadership role than what I was doing,” Hoffman said. “I had kind of worked my way up through the ranks. I was captain for four, five years before I applied for this position and got hired for this.”

As a captain, Hoffman noted his role focused more on operational supervision — leading the response when personnel were out on calls. Transitioning to division chief, Hoffman noted he will have more overall supervision of the department.

With those new responsibilities come more opportunities to train department staff, which is something Hoffman noted he has come to enjoy in his years on the crew.

“I also kind of like teaching new people, teaching them the ropes, and that’s part of what this position is — doing some new hire training to get them up to where they need to be,” Hoffman said.

On top of his role as a firefighter over the years, Hoffman has also gained certification as an emergency medical technician and helps the department respond to EMS calls as well in times of need.

For Hoffman, while there are some calls that stand out in his mind that he is proud to have been able to respond to and provide a service (like helping after a wall had fallen on a pediatric patient), that truly just comes with the territory in his eyes.

“All the calls, of the calls we’ve run, it’s just what we do,” Hoffman said.

Gaining experience was the name of the game when Hoffman started, as he noted that goal of working his way into a leadership role was one he had from the beginning. He admitted he didn’t expect that to come in Halstead initially, but he said he is happy it played out that way as Halstead has been a great community to serve.

For others looking to serve their communities, in whatever role, Hoffman advises jumping in because — as he has come to know — there are numerous individuals who will offer guidance on how to have the greatest impact.

“You have to just initiate the step,” Hoffman said, “and there’s people there who’ll help you get started and get what you need to do.”


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Deadly crashes on the turnpike

KAKE – Feb. 12, 2018

The Kansas Highway Patrol is reporting two deadly accidents on the I-35 Saturday.

The first accident occurred just before 4 p.m. near mile marker 32 on I-35. Troopers say Tiana Herling,37, died after rear-ending a semi-truck. She was pronounced dead at the scene. The driver of the semi was not hurt.

In McPherson County, a 25-year-old driver was headed north on I-35 , northeast of Moundridge, when he struck a southbound vehicle. Authorities say that accident happened just before 10 p.m. Troopers identified the driver as Tyler Loomis. Investigators say they haven’t determined why Loomis crossed the median into oncoming traffic. The driver of the second vehicle suffered minor injuries.


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Man dies in north Wichita house fire

KWCH – Feb. 12, 2018


The fire to a home in the 3100 block of North Woodland has turned deadly.

The call for the fire came in about 6:13 p.m. When Wichita Fire Department crews arrived, they found heavy smoke in the house, but no flames, Wichita Fire Chief Tammy Snow says.

Snow says while crews tried to find the source of the fire, they found a man in the house not breathing. That man died.There were no other injuries, Snow says.


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Garage fire in Topeka causes loss of $20,000

WIBW – Feb. 12, 2018

A fire caused $20,000 worth of damage to a garage in Topeka early Sunday morning.

The Topeka Fire Department responded to the blaze at 1025 Northwest Jackson street around 6:20 a.m.

Upon arrival, fire crews found a detached garage structure in the back alley, with fire coming through the roof.

No one was inside at the time, and firefighters were able to keep the fire contained to the garage.

No working smoke detectors were in use at the time of the fire.

The cause of the fire is under investigation.


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Icy roads lead to fatal crash in Osage County

By Brandon Peoples
KVOE – Feb. 12, 2018

Icy roads are being blamed for a fatal crash that occurred Saturday evening in Osage County.

According to the Kansas Highway Patrol, shortly after 5:30 p.m. a passenger car was southbound on Interstate 35 near mile marker 165, approximately 3 miles northeast of the Waverly interchange. The vehicle left the road due to icy conditions, struck a van that was legally parked in the median and two pedestrians.

One of the pedestrians, 49-year-old Robert Groh of Raymore, Missouri was transported to Ransom Memorial Hospital in Ottawa and died from his injuries. The other pedestrian, 35-year-old Adam Balentine of Judsonia, Arkansas was transported to Coffey County Hospital with a possible injury.

The two occupants in the passenger car were not injured. They were identified as 24-year-old Taylor Walker of Kalamazoo, Michigan and 47-year-old Jeffrey Butler of San Diego, California.


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Multiple fire units respond to Mulvane house fire

By Bryan Ramsdale
KAKE – Feb. 12, 2018

A fire Sunday evening damaged a home near Mulvane.

Firefighters were called to a home in the 10800 block of South Anthony Lane near Mulvane.

Firefighters were seen climbing to the roof of a one-story home that had damaged siding and smoke billowing out of it.

Emergency dispatch says that no one was hurt in the fire and the person who called in the fire said the house was fully engulfed in fire.

Firefighters are looking into the cause of the fire.


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7 people escape house fire

By Tiffany Littler
KSNT – Feb. 12, 2018

Two adults and five children were able to escape a house fire with no injuries Sunday morning.

The Topeka Fire Department responded to the fire at 3305 SE Emerson St. just after 11:00 a.m.

When crews arrived, they found heavy smoke and flames coming from the single story home.

The fire was kept to a bedroom of the house.

Topeka Fire ruled the fire as accidental and could be electrical.

The estimated total loss is $15,000.

No working smoke detectors were found in the house.


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Hazmat training planned for first responders

By Kelly Breckunitch
Newton Kansan – Feb. 9, 2018

Harvey County Emergency Management Director Gary Denny came before the county commission this week with a plan. Stemming from the whole of community approach to emergency management, he also wants to make sure first responders are prepared to work together to handle a wide range of scenarios, which is why he is seeking a hazardous materials emergency preparedness grant.

Grant funds would be used to provide planning and training for local entities — namely Newton Medical Center and Newton Fire/EMS, but Denny noted it would be open to all county agencies — to increase their effectiveness when dealing with hazardous materials accidents or incidents.

Currently, the plan is to host the training sessions in late February/early March 2019 at Newton Fire/EMS Station #3. Partly to help NMC meet Occupational Safety and Health Administration standards, Denny noted decontamination will be the focus of the training — and establishing a more diverse approach in such situations.

“There’s several applications for decontamination. It doesn’t always have to be associated with a hazardous materials release, but they’re kind of one and the same,” Denny said.

Scenarios where decontamination comes into play that Denny listed included chemical spills, infectious diseases or threats of biological weapons (i.e. anthrax). The training would not only address decontaminating the site of the incident, but how to treat victims, the chemical specifics — like identifying potentially unknown hazardous materials — and more.

“If we’re blessed with this grant money, then we’re also blessing our first responders with a higher level of specific training that they may not be getting today,” Denny said.

Regardless of if that funding is received, Denny said the plan is go forward with the training since there is a clear need. There are a handful of Newton Fire/EMS and NMC personnel trained for decontamination, but Denny said the goal is to get even more prepared to adequately set up and run a decontamination station (including outside of the hospital setting) and utilize the necessary equipment (i.e. a powdered air purifying respirator).

Denny said if there is room, seats in the training session will be opened up to regional partners as well because no matter the scale, he knows collaboration will be key for any entities to be fully prepared for such emergency scenarios dealing with hazardous materials.

“What we’ve learned in the past is that no single entity can handle major catastrophes on their own, that it is a whole community approach. That is specifically true when we deal with hazardous materials because we do know that we don’t have local resources to the quantity or volume that we would really need for a major incident, so then we need to start building and relying on these partnerships,” Denny said. “Building those partnerships between our health care partners and first responding partners will do nothing but enhance the capabilities of our community.”


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Olathe firefighters rescue dog stranded on frozen pond

By Chris Oberholtz
KCTV 5 – Feb. 9, 2018

Photo by Olathe Fire Department


Firefighters rescued a three-year-old Wheaten terrier Friday morning after she wandered onto a small pond and became stranded.

Crews managed to get past the ice, water and mud to help Willow, the Olathe Fire Department said on Facebook.

Willow is now OK and with her family.

“Great reminder for all to please stay off of frozen bodies of water,” firefighters said.


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Fire at Munson’s Prime temporarily closes the restaurant

Junction City Daily Union – Feb. 9, 2018

Munson’s Prime is temporarily closed after an accidental fire in the kitchen Thursday evening, according to officials with the Junction City Fire Department.

Fire Chief Terry Johnson said firefighters responded to a call in the afternoon to find smoke hanging around the ceiling and a smell of burnt wood and synthetic materials. Firefighters discovered the source of the fire to be a wall in the kitchen near rear exit. Smoke and fire were coming out of a hole in the brick facade outside the restaurant, where insulation had caught fire. JCFD firefighters removed the burning insulation and extinguished the fire. The fire had spread up and down the wall, burning it.

The building was permeated by smoke, including above the ceiling tiles.

However, according to Johnson, the fire had been put out before it could spread to the ceiling.

The fire was caused by improperly discarded smoking materials.

“There was a little hole in the masonry wall that somebody was putting cigarette butts in,” he said.

Munson’s Prime is estimated to be closed for the next four days as repairs are done and the Kansas Department of Health and Environment inspects the building.


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Firefighters rescue injured cat from icy Kansas river

Hays Post – Feb. 9, 2018

Firefighter Kuffler of the WFD Technical Rescue Team retrieves a cat from the frozen Arkansas River Thursday afternoon. Photo by Craig Hacker

Firefighters have rescued an injured cat from an icy river in downtown Wichita after the animal apparently was thrown off an overpass.

A motorist spotted the black cat Thursday afternoon and called 911. Wichita Fire Lt. Kenneth Ast says the cat was sitting on ice in the middle of the Arkansas River when crews arrived.

Fire Capt. Neko McBee says the ice “was starting to crack” when rescuers in wetsuits and an inflated boat reached the animal. The fire department said in a tweet that it’s believed the cat was thrown off the overpass.

The animal rescue group Beauties and Beasts has dubbed the cat “River” and said on Facebook that he sustained “severe” injury to his rear legs. The group asked for “loving thoughts.”


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