Ohio News

Friday, December 6, 2019

Fairfield city leaders reject grant that would have paid for 6 full-time firefighters, paramedics

City leaders will not accept a federal grant that would have defrayed the cost of hiring six full-time firefighter paramedics for three years. Only one councilman, Ron D’Epifanio, was in favor of accepting the Staffing for Adequate Fire and Emergency Response grant from the Department of Homeland Security. Awarded in September, the grant would have reimbursed the city 75 percent of the cost of the firefighters each of the first two years and 35 percent in the third year. Beginning with Year 4 and thereafter, the entire cost for the firefighters would become the city’s responsibility. “It was not something we could afford,’’ said Councilman Tim Abbott, who chairs the city’s Finance and Budget Committee. City Manager Mark Wendling said the city had the money to pay the additional firefighters for the first year once the grant expired.
Cincinnati Enquirer & Cincinnati.com

Liberty gets first new fire engine in ten years

Christmas is coming early for Liberty Township firefighters. It's too big to put under the tree, but the township will officially unveil a shiny, new, red fire truck on Friday. Crews have already been training on the 2019 Sutphen fire engine, which will be put into service during an 11 am ceremony. It is the department's first new engine in ten years. The engine's home will be Fire Station 35 on Logan Way. Sutphen is a family-owned company based in Columbus that has been making firefighting equipment for 129 years.
WFMJ-TV Youngstown NBC 21

Officials: No hazard found after HAZMAT, bomb squad response in northwest Columbus

A cul-de-sac in northwest Columbus and the surrounding area were evacuated Thursday night as the Columbus Division of Fire investigated possible radiation. Columbus Fire Chief Steve Martin said crews, including HAZMAT, the bomb squad and arson team, responded to a home in the area of Cranston Drive and Riverside Drive at around 6 p.m. In a call to 911, a man said he was working on a "quantum physics generator" and said he had burns. Confusion as to what type of burns he suffered from prompted the response. Fire officials said the words the man used in the call were “alpha ray and particle accelerator," leading to concerns over radiation. The man allegedly said he had radiofrequency burns.
WBNS-TV Columbus 10

Firefighters to receive stipend for response to HAZMAT situations in Mahoning County

For the first time, those who respond to HAZMAT situations in Mahoning County will be paid when they are called out or go through training. Thursday morning, County Commissioners approved a new policy. It allows crew members to receive a stipend whenever they respond to a hazardous situation as well as for training. In the past, these responders were largely volunteers, but their duties were very time-intensive. “You know, these folks train weekly. They train monthly. They go on calls. They spend their entire Saturdays, every single month, doing trainings, so they put a lot of time and effort into this,” said Boardman Fire Chief Mark Pitzer. Firefighters will now receive $50 every time they are called to a HAZMAT scene. Commissioners already pay for most of the specialized equipment that HAZMAT teams use.
WYTV-TV 33 News

Thursday, December 5, 2019

Hamilton firefighters demand answers, calling report into firefighter’s death incomplete

Hamilton firefighters are demanding answers after they said fire administrators released an incomplete report after one of their own died in the line of duty. In December 2015, firefighter Patrick Wolterman rushed into a burning home to save someone he thought was inside. Wolterman fell through the floor and died of smoke inhalation. Investigators later discovered that the fire was set on purpose. During a packed meeting Wednesday night, the fire union said officials intentionally omitted crucial information, such as response times, from the report. "It's not a full accounting. I mean, until you really accept that and face that head-on," said Tony Harris, president of the Hamilton IAFF Local 20. "I've said it a number of times: My guys couldn't hide from that night. People in my department couldn't hide from that night.
WLWT-TV NBC 5 Cincinnati

Two charged with massive Clifton fire that caused over $1 million in damage

Fire investigators arrested two people Wednesday in connection with a four-alarm fire that tore through several buildings in the CUF neighborhood in September, according to the Cincinnati Fire Department. Kobe Fritts is charged with two counts of complicity to aggravated arson, while Arlenia Tolbert is charged with complicity to commit aggravated arson, conspiracy to commit arson and insurance fraud. Fire Department companies were initially dispatched to 2518 Addison Street at 4:31 a.m. on Sept. 23, 2019. They reportedly arrived to find the house ‘fully engulfed’ in flames. The fire would extend to six other addresses nearby.
WXIX-TV FOX 19 Cincinnati

Trumbull Moose Lodge donates much-needed equipment to Warren Fire Department

Christmas came early for the Warren Fire Department as two new pieces of equipment essential for this time of year were gifted. The Trumbull Moose Lodge #186 gave the department two carbon monoxide meters. Each one costs about $2,300. The new meters measure the levels of different gases in the air and come with a built-in pump and tubing that will allow firefighters to check the air quality from a distance. Members of the Moose Lodge said they’ve always believed in giving back and are glad to help the fire department. “We had a situation where the gas meters that we were using were needing to be repaired on a frequent basis,” said Asst. Fire Chief Chuck Eggleston.
WYTV-TV 33 News

Fire Marshal: Cause of Port Clinton’s safari blaze unknown; no evidence of criminal activity

The state fire marshal's office has completed its investigation into the Thanksgiving night barn fire that killed 10 animals at the African Safari Wildlife Park and said the damage was so extensive that the cause cannot be determined "The post-fire condition of the building prevented the ability to determine an exact cause of the fire," Investigator Frank Reitmeier said in a news release issued Wednesday by the Division of State Fire Marshal’s Fire and Explosion Investigation Bureau. There was no indication of criminal activity associated with the incident, the news release said. No staff were injured during the fire but three giraffes, three red river hogs, three bongos and a springbok died, according to Holly Hunt, co-owner of the African Safari Wildlife Park, 267 S. Lightner Rd., Port Clinton.
Bucyrus Telegraph Forum

Local organization donates pet rescue masks to Medina Fire Department

A local fire department is getting some help saving the lives of pets, using special oxygen masks, thanks to a donation that comes less than a month after the successful rescue of one family's pet. Medina resident Rae Clark was at dinner with family on November 9 when she received an unexpected call from local police. "It said police on my caller ID and I look at my husband and said, 'Why are they calling me? I didn't do anything' and I handed the phone to him and he answered," she said. The caller told Tim, her husband, that there was smoke coming from their Court Street home and firefighters were responding to the residence. "I hung up the phone with her and and then I said to myself 'the dog. George is in the house.' And then I called them back and said 'my dog is upstairs. Can you get him out?" Tim explained.
WJW-TV MyFox Cleveland

Firefighters respond to Euclid High School; No injuries reported

Firefighters responded to Euclid High School on Wednesday for a fire in a restroom. The Euclid Fire Department said toilet paper was set on fire in a third-floor restroom. It happened after dismissal, but there were still students and teachers in the building for after-school activities. No one was injured. Christopher Papouras, interim superintendent, said the fire was initially put out with an extinguisher by a "quick thinking" staff member at the high school. The building was evacuated for about a half hour from 2:30 - 3 p.m. Student-athletes were then allowed back into the building for extra-curricular activities. The fire department said there is a camera nearby that likely caught the incident.
WJW-TV MyFox Cleveland

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