Florida News

Friday, February 26, 2021

Lehigh Family Dollar destroyed in two-alarm fire

VIDEO: A Family Dollar in Lehigh Acres was completely destroyed in a two-alarm fire early Friday morning. Lehigh Acres Fire received the call about the fire after someone saw flames coming from inside the building, located at 3519 Lee Blvd, around 1 a.m. All units with Lehigh Acres Fire Rescue were called to the scene as well as Fort Myers firefighters and South Trail firefighters. Massive flames were found inside the building, which started to crack, according to Lehigh Acres Fire Chief Robert Dilallo. Fire crews attacked the blaze from the outside of the building due to the danger presented by the damaged structure. Propane tanks were moved away from the building to prevent explosions, said Dilallo. There are still some hazards present, but Dilallo said crews have the fire under control. The fire was officially declared out just before 5 a.m.
WBBH-TV NBC 2 Fort Myers

Fort Myers Beach hotel makes sure guests find places to stay after fire

Fort Myers Beach Fire Department responded to a fire at Sun Deck Inn & Suites on Fort Myers Beach Thursday night. According to the fire department, firefighters brought a fire under control on the second floor of the hotel. The property is on Third Street near Crescent Street. The fire was mostly within the walls of the hotel, and there was no visible damage from the fire on the exterior of the hotel. No one was inside the hotel when crews arrived on scene. Sun Deck Inn & Suites called other local hotels to make sure all of its guests had places to stay. No one was injured due to the fire, and the cause remains under investigation. “It came out of nowhere to us really,” owner Daniel Clarkston said. “I’m so glad that nobody got hurt.”
WINK-TV CBS 11 Fort Myers

Florida Forest Service launches website aimed at wildfire education, safety

Two years after Hurricane Michael, the damage is still seen in many places. The Florida Forest Service says 2. 8 million acres of trees were either broken or blown over. That damage is now causing foresters to issue a warning about the increase likelihood of forest fires. In Gadsden County, the Emergency Management Director told WCTV that Hurricane Michael caused 400 million dollars of damage to the county. The Florida Forest Service compared downed trees to a box of matched sticks that could be lit at any time. Gadsden County Emergency Management Director, Shawn Wood, said, “A lot of people use forestry as a way of income or retirement and it was totally destroyed.” After Hurricane Michael ripped through North Florida two years ago, thousands and thousands of downed trees remain. Wood said, “There is so many downed trees that it will become an issue those trees that have been down two years as the summer season comes it’ll become very dangerous for a lot of areas.”
WCTV CBS 6 Thomasville

Update: 8 injured, hospitalized in Lake County fire

Firefighters were battling a fire Thursday morning at a Lake County residence, which hospitalized eight people. The fire was reported at 6:24 a.m. at a residence near Sorrento Road, according to Lake County spokesperson Levar Cooper. Seven inhabitants and one resident were transported to the hospital with non-life-threatening injuries, Cooper said. The fire was extinguished, but involved 50% of the home, Cooper said. Lake County Sheriff’s Office was first on the scene, and later stated that Sorrento Road was closed and County Road 46A would experience delays due to the fire. The cause of the fire is still under investigation at this time.
Orlando Sentinel - Metered Site

Bonita Springs firefighters rescue osprey hit by car

Bonita Springs firefighters rescued an osprey that was hit by a car on Thursday morning. The osprey was hit at the roundabout near Old 41 Road and Terry Street, according to the Bonita Springs Fire Control and Rescue District. The bird allowed firefighters to cover him gently with their bunker coat and scoop him up to secure him. Firefighters said the osprey, who is calm and docile, is patiently waiting for crews with the Clinic for Rehabilitation of Wildlife to arrive.
WZVN-TV ABC 7 Fort Myers

Thursday, February 25, 2021

Panama City Beach Fire Rescue purchases remote-controlled rescue boats

VIDEO: If you’re swimming in the Gulf in Panama City Beach this summer, you may notice a small boat-like device bobbing through the water. The City’s Beach Safety Department is officially adding remote-controlled rescue boats to its fleet. E.M.I.L.Y stands for Emergency Integrated Lifesaving Lanyard and Panama City Beach now owns two of them. “E.M.I.L.Y’s a rescue device that can be used to help get out to a victim quickly,” said Wil Spivey, Panama City Beach Fire Rescue’s Beach Safety Director. The rescue boat can travel up to 35 miles per hour and is controlled remotely by people onshore. Swimmers in distress can grab ahold of the lanyard and get brought to safety. “These are tools that can be used by a non-rescue or somebody that’s not going into the Gulf, like a fireman. We can pull somebody off duty and put them on this device,” Spivey said. The Beach Safety department has purchased two E.M.I.L.Y’s from Gulf County.
WMBB-TV ABC 13 Panama City

Fire destroys mobile home in Suncoast Estates in North Fort Myers

North Fort Myers Fire Control & Rescue Service District responded to a fire that destroyed a double-wide mobile home in the Suncoast Estates community of North Fort Myers Wednesday night. Crews were at the scene of the fire in the 7900 block of Hart Drive, south of Gish Lane. The fire was put out, but the home was a complete loss. Everyone in the home was able to get out; however, there is a missing pet whose status and whereabouts are unknown at this time. Six people lived at the home. Joseph Davis told us the fire began in the landlord’s room, and she uses oxygen tanks in her daily life. Davis told us he lost everything. “I was telling them to kick the door open because she was inside. The fire was in her room,” Davis said. Davis says if he didn’t act quickly, he fears his landlord wouldn’t be alive.
WINK-TV CBS 11 Fort Myers

Lake County house goes up in flames

PHOTO: A house fire in Lake County has prompted officials to close a road in the area. The fire broke out Thursday morning at a home in Sorrento on Droty Springs Lane, which is closed. “Expect delays on (nearby) County Road 46A,” the Lake County Sheriff’s Office tweeted. No one was injured in the fire, officials said. “Deputies are conducting traffic control while the fire department extinguishes the fire,” the tweet read. No other details, including the cause of fire, have been released.
WKMG-TV CBS 6 Orlando

Tamarac Fire Rescue Captain Urges People To Know The Signs Of Heart Disease After Undergoing Life Saving Surgery

For Tony Chin, October 30th, 2020, started off as a pretty normal day. The Tamarac Fire Rescue captain was teaching at the Coral Springs Fire Academy that day. However, he felt tired and weak, but didn’t think too much of it until a friend, a fellow firefighter, noticed something was off. “I’ve known him for many many years and he said you know something just didn’t look right. He said let’s go to the hospital and get you checked out. He then pulled my line, which I always tell my patients, ‘hey, if it’s nothing, you’ll be home in an hour,'” said Chin. It turns out it wasn’t ‘nothing’. He had 100 percent blockages in parts of his heart. The 47-year-old dad found himself at Broward Health Medical Center and then in the Cardiac ICU with a coronary artery disease that could’ve led to a heart attack. Dr. Mohamed Osman performed the emergency life-saving surgery to remove the blockages in Chin’s heart.

North Collier Fire launches animated children’s safety video series

North Collier Fire Control and Rescue District has launched the first in a series of animated educational videos targeted at teaching children about fire safety. The video introduces to the public the animated characters of Firefighter Frank and his canine partner Tank. The COVID-19 pandemic has drastically impacted the ability for District Firefighters/EMTs/Paramedics to interact with the public, specifically children in the classroom setting. For retention and social interaction, the District has found that in-person learning is a very effective way to reach and teach children about fire safety. Pandemic concerns have prompted the District to rethink how it interacts with its younger population. Fire Chief Eloy Ricardo called for his team to address the issue. “A large part of the mission of North Collier Fire is educating children about fire safety. COVID-19 has greatly restricted our ability to perform that function, so I challenged our Public Education division to find an alternative way to reach children in an effective manner.”
Florida Weekly

COVID-19 Hospitalizations Continue To Decline, State Reports More Than 7,000 New Cases

While hospitalizations due to COVID-19 continue declining statewide, the number of new cases reported Wednesday was up slightly from a day earlier. Hospitalizations with a primary diagnosis of COVID-19 continue declining statewide. As of Wednesday afternoon, the state reported 4,077 people were being treated at hospitals in Florida with a primary diagnosis of COVID-19. That's down by 33 percent since the start of the month. The Florida Department of Health also reported 7,128 people tested positive for the coronavirus since Tuesday, bringing the total to 1,885,661 cases. It's also up from the 5,610 cases reported Tuesday. The state also recorded the deaths of 129 people due to complications from COVID-19 since Tuesday's report, bringing the overall death toll to 30,878 people. Thirty of those deaths were recorded in the greater Tampa Bay region, with 17 in Polk County.
WUSF Public Media

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