Illinois News

Wednesday, December 7, 2016

Chicago: Man ‘extremely critical’ after house fire in Clearing

A man was critically injured in a house fire Wednesday morning in the Clearing neighborhood on the Southwest Side. Firefighters responded about 8:50 a.m. to a fire in a single-story home in the 5700 block of West 63rd Place, according to Fire Media Affairs Director Larry Langford. Responders were initially told several people were trapped inside the house, prompting them to upgrade to a still and box alarm. A man, thought to be in his 50s, was found in the home and taken in “extremely critical” condition to MacNeal Hospital in Berwyn, Langford said. No other injuries were reported.
WFLD-TV MyFox 32 Chicago

Chief Steve Alexander retiring as Wood River fire chief

Chief Steve Alexander of the Wood River Fire Department has announced his intention to retire after 35 years. In a letter read by Mayor Frank Akers during Monday’s city council meeting, Alexander said he was grateful for the opportunity to serve his community. “It is with mixed emotions that I submit this letter,” he wrote. “Please let this letter serve as my official notice that I plan to retire effective at 5 p.m. on Friday, Jan. 6, 2017.”
Alton Telegraph

Danville council approves closure of Fire Station 3

Adelita Perez, who lives a few streets from Fire Station 3 on Griffin Street, told Danville aldermen that she could not get her three kids — an infant daughter, a son with asthma and her physically disabled teenage daughter — out of her house during a fire without help. "I would need the fire department to get them out," Perez said during a packed city council meeting Tuesday night. She was one of about 10 people who addressed aldermen about the proposed closure of the station. She pleaded with Danville aldermen to vote against the closure — stressing the importance of a quick response in an emergency and the high-volume of railroad traffic on routes to her house from other stations in the city — but they approved it, largely as a cost-saving measure.
Champaign News-Gazette

La Salle seeks donors for fire truck project

The city of La Salle is seeking monetary and in-kind donations to construct a display building at Fifth and Sterling streets near the La Salle fire station to house a 1928 American-LaFrance ladder truck. The truck served the city until 1976 and for 16 years has been stored and displayed in the public works building at Second and Wright streets. The building will display the truck through a large window. The city has so far received $14,647 in cash donations and in-kind labor from contractors has concrete footings in for the new display building. The city estimates it will need $30,000 to complete the project.
News Tribune (North Central Illinois)

Tuesday, December 6, 2016

Cluchey named new chief of Elburn & Countryside Fire Protection District

The Elburn & Countryside Fire Protection District’s new chief, Joseph M. Cluchey, is looking forward to becoming an integral part of the community. Having previously worked his way up through the ranks to become the chief of the South Elgin & Countryside Fire Protection District, Cluchey has the experience and background that Elburn was looking for in a new leader. After a nationwide search that began with 49 applicants, Cluchey was the district’s top choice. He was sworn in as the new chief Nov. 14. “He caught everybody’s eye,” fire district board member Brian Schopp said. Schopp said that having dealt with the tremendous growth that has taken place in South Elgin since Cluchey joined the department in 1981, he feels Cluchey is well-prepared to shepherd Elburn through its upcoming growth and challenges.
Kane County Chronicle

Rock Falls and Sterling at odds over dispatch director hiring process

The emergency dispatch consolidation process in Whiteside County has hit a rough patch. Rock Falls Mayor Bill Wescott was at Monday's Sterling City Council meeting to voice his displeasure over the hiring process for a dispatch director. Wescott, a former emergency services professional, recounted the county's history with 911 services. "It was 24 years ago that emergency 911 came into being in Whiteside County, and at the time, we didn't do one center for Sterling and Rock Falls, as many thought we should have," Wescott said. Fast-forward to the present, and both cities no longer will be allowed to have public safety answering points. Gov. Bruce Rauner signed a bill July 31, 2015, that allows no more than two emergency dispatch centers in counties with a population of 250,000 or less. Whiteside County now has dispatch units in Sterling, Rock Falls, and Morrison.

Edwardsville Fire Department in need of an ambulance fix

Following a recent ambulance collision, the Edwardsville Fire Department addressed the Public Safety Committee at Tuesday’s meeting to discuss the possibility of remounting or replacing the ambulance involved. Due to extensive damage, the ambulance was totaled. Edwardsville Fire Department Captain James Whiteford said currently the department and the insurance company are trying to figure out the best and cheapest solution. “We are still waiting on the insurance company to decide what they want to do about that. Their two options are to just pay to replace it or send it down to Alabama to the manufacturer, have them evaluate whether it can be repaired and added on to a new chassis. The insurance company has not made that decision yet. I suspect they’re trying to figure out how much it’s going to cost to send it to Alabama and get the information and weigh that against replacing the whole thing,” Whiteford said.
Edwardsville Intelligencer

Dixon firefighters see red for the holidays

If you drive by the Dixon Rural or Dixon City fire departments, you’ll see a wreath hanging above each department’s firehouse doors. The wreaths are adorned with red lights – and firefighters want to keep it that way. Members of both departments have again joined the Keep the Wreath Red Campaign to help raise awareness of holiday-related fires. While Christmas brings a lot of joy, it also brings an increased risk of fires, with extension chords snaking in and around homes, dry Christmas trees, and lights galore.

Property tax rates in Quincy to remain unchanged

The property tax rate in Quincy may not be going up after all after new numbers from the state show that the city may not need it. City officials planned to raise property taxes to help meet a state law requiring more money be put into police and firefighter pensions, but Mayor Kyle Moore now says the property tax rate will stay the same. Moore says state numbers came in lower than they expected. With property values going up in the city, the current tax rate will allow them to put in hundreds of thousands more towards then pension than targets set out by the Department of Insurance.
WGEM-TV Quincy

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