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Harvey (Day 5): Ohio Task Force 1 remains in Houston area

Published: Saturday, August 26, 2017 @ 9:22 AM
Updated: Tuesday, August 29, 2017 @ 4:42 AM

OHTF1: In a box truck with evacuees

UPDATE @ 4:40 a.m. (Aug. 29): Ohio Task Force 1 and Gabrielle Enright remain in Houston while waiting for their next assignment. 

RELATED: Harvey: Ohio Task Force 1 trucks navigate high water to evacuate nursing home

UPDATE @ 9 p.m. (Aug. 28): Ohio Task Force 1 remains in the Houston area, assigned to perform water rescues.

More than 1,000 people have been rescued in the last eight hours as water levels continue to rise because Tropical Storm Harvey is lingering over southeast Texas.

OHTF1: More from Houston

UPDATE @ 10:50 a.m. (Aug. 28)

Ohio Task Force 1 will head to the southern part of Houston to perform boat rescues, after the Houston area received over 30 inches of rain from Hurricane Harvey. 

LATEST: Hurricane Harvey slams into Texas coast

MORE: Photos: Hurricane Harvey causes widespread damage

The task force has been given a window until around noon Central Time before water will be released from a levy or dam. 

Ohio Task Force 1 is busy in Houston

News Center 7’s Gabrielle Enright remains with Ohio Task Force 1 in Texas, and we’ll continue to update this page as we learn more. 

UPDATE @ 6:20 p.m. (Aug. 27)

Ohio Task Force 1 is in Katy, outside Houston, ready to operate water rescue missions. The Houston area has been deluged by ‘unprecedented flooding” from torrential rains from Tropical Storm Harvey.

Rainfall totals are approaching 20 inches, recorded at the Houston Intercontinental Airport, according to the Weather Prediction Center.

(Gabrielle Enright/STAFF)

UPDATE @ 1:21 p.m.Ohio Task Force 1 has been given a new destination -- Katy, Texas, outside Houston.

>> Listen to WHIO Radio on AM 1290 and News 95.7 for LIVE coverage of the active situation in Texas.

UPDATE @ 1:05 p.m.

Ohio Task Force 1 will soon be leaving the Texas town of Tivoli and head for San Antonio to stage.

“We are seeing lines of medics and charter buses headed to Houston,” WHIO-TV’s Gabrielle Enright reports, along with videographer Chuck Hamlin.

UPDATE @ 11:05 a.m. 

Ohio Task Force 1, in the small southeast Texas town of Tivoli, helped “rescue” a fire truck trapped when the firehouse collapsed.

There were no injuries resulting from the collapse as the team was able to help the fire crew get their fire engine back in service.

There have been no reports of people in the town being trapped.

(Gabrielle Enright/Staff)

UPDATE @ 10:05 a.m. (Aug. 27) DAY 3: Ohio Task Force 1 spent the night in Robstown, Texas, and now is in the area of Tivoli, a short distance from the San Antonio Bay and southeast of Victoria. 

In Tivoli, task force members are assessing damage and sending information to FEMA to help determine if the town should receive federal help and funding. 

The town of roughly 400 people, northeast of Corpus Christi and southwest of Houston, takes its name from the town of Tivoli in the Lazio region of central Italy. 

Meteorologist Kirstie Zontini looks at the latest impacts from Harvey and also what could become another tropical storm to our east.

Meantime, Ohio Task Force 1 members are anticipating they will be moved to the Houston area. 

In an effort to meet up with the task force, WHIO-TV's Gabrielle Enright and Videographer Chuck Hamlin are staging between where the task force is now and where they will go.  

Enright and Hamlin will provide with you with updates, video and more as they move forward.

UPDATE @ 12:15 a.m. (Aug. 27)

Ohio Task Force 1 arrived Saturday night in Robstown, Texas, about 30 miles from Corpus Christi.

The urban search and rescue team expects to be put to work today assisting local resources. Ohio Task Force 1 was deployed to Robstown along with Texas Task Force 1 and Missouri Task Force 1.

UPDATE @ 6:20 p.m. (Aug. 26) DAY 2

Ohio Task Force 1 has been deployed and is headed to Robstown, Texas, not far from Corpus Christi.

Teams there requested support in the wake of Hurricane Harvey’s landfall and subsequent torrential rains as it stalls in the region as a tropical storm, News Center 7’s Gabrielle Enright said. She and videographer Chuck Hamlin are traveling with the task force.

Ohio Task Force 1 and Missouri Task Force 1 are leaving from San Antonio, and will meet up with Texas Task Force 1 in Robstown.

Support efforts are expected to begin and first light.

Ohio Task Force 1 moving to Robstown, Texas

EARLIER (Aug. 26)

Ohio Task Force 1 learned during a conference call today that they will remain on standby to assist with any search and rescue missions, however at this point they have not received any missions from FEMA.

News Center 7’s Gabrielle Enright and videographer Chuck Hamlin are traveling with the group as they prepare for possible search and rescue missions related to Hurricane Harvey.

DAY 1: Ohio Task Force 1 leaves Dayton for Texas

So far, the task force is being held primarily for flooding concerns. While there are a lot of damage reports coming in, Texas resources have been able to handle them.

The task force arrived in San Antonio early Saturday morning and many of the crew were finally able to get some rest around 4:45 a.m. when they slept on cots at the AT&T Center.

MAP: Ohio Task Force One Location

The team is continuing to have regular meetings and are creating tactical plan should they be called for a mission.

The drive from Dayton to San Antonio is approximately 18 hours.

This news organization was the first to report to you that 49 members are part of the activation group, which learned of their mission in a conference call Thursday night (Aug.24). 

The crew worked to load the task force vehicles before they left their base in Kettering early Friday morning.

Our News Center 7 teams have traveled with the Task Force for several other missions they’ve been assigned to, including Hurricane Matthew in 2016 and Hurricane Sandy in 2012.

RELATED: PHOTOS: Ohio Task Force One helps during Hurricane Sandy

RELATED: Ohio Task Force 1 is home again, ending Hurricane Matthew deployment

Reporter Gabrielle Enright reports just outside Little Rock, Arkansas, on the latest conditions from Hurricane Harvey.

VIDEOS: Meteor spotted in Ohio, Michigan, Canada

Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 10:06 PM

Meteorite spotted over midwestern states

The fireball lit up the sky Tuesday just after 8 p.m.

>>Bitter cold temperatures to continue

The dashboard cam video was shared by Mike Austin as he was driving north on I-75 near Bloomfield Hills, north of Detroit, Michigan. 

The fireball was also seen from northwest Ohio and southwest Ontario, Canada. 

It is not known whether the meteorite dissipated in the atmosphere or made it to the ground or into Lake Michigan.

Dashcam video shot by WWMT/Kalamazoo photo journalist Zack Lawler in Battle Creek, Michigan.

MONTAGE: Beams of light caused by meteor in Michigan

Changes promised in wake of racially insensitive basketball jerseys incident

Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 10:31 PM

Kings Schools Superintendent Tim Ackermann speaks about the basketball jersey incident and the resignation of board member Terry McKiernan during a school board meeting Tuesday, Jan. 16. (Nick Graham/Staff)
Kings Schools Superintendent Tim Ackermann speaks about the basketball jersey incident and the resignation of board member Terry McKiernan during a school board meeting Tuesday, Jan. 16. (Nick Graham/Staff)

Changes are being promised for Kings Schools in the wake of last week’s racist incident that drew national attention, but Tuesday evening district officials said details about those changes will come later.

That was the message from Kings’ leader and school board members, who took the resignation of their board vice president in the wake of some white, local teens wearing basketball jerseys that displayed racist slurs.

 MORE: Kings and Mason schools facing outcry in wake of racial incidents

The Kings Board of Education voted 4-0 to formally accept the resignation of member Kerry McKiernan, who previously cited his own failure in stopping some of the boys on the recreational league basketball team – not affiliated with Kings -- from wearing jerseys with names that appeared to slur African-Americans.

The names on the backs of the jerseys included "Knee Grow" and "Coon." The team played in the Cincinnati Premier Youth Basketball League.

McKiernan, whose son played on the now banned team that used Kings’ facilities, did not attend Tuesday’s board meeting and has not responded to requests for comment.

Last week McKiernan emotionally announced his intentions to resign, citing his failure to stop the team from wearing the jerseys during its first four games.

 MORE: Kings board member and father said he shares responsibility for failing to report racist jerseys

Superintendent Tim Ackermann told this news outlet he will soon be proposing systemic changes design to raise student, school staffers and community members’ awareness of the importance of racial and other diversity for the predominately white Warren County district.

“It’s really important to move forward and sustainable change is extremely important to us so that we can work to create a more loving, acceptable tolerant society,” said Ackermann. “We believe this is a community and societal issue around racism … intolerance, hate and bigotry and we all need to work together to make Kings the best place for all of our kids.”

He declined, however, to give details as to what district efforts are coming, saying the changes are still being studied.

“I don’t want to create something just to create something. Sustainable change doesn’t happen overnight,” said Ackermann.

Tom Squires, an African-American parent at Kings, was among the more than a dozen residents who attended the board meeting.

Afterward, Squires said the jersey incident, which has drawn national media attention, was “unfortunate.”

“We didn’t pay that close of attention as parents and we should have. We have to react swiftly and we have to make sure that people understand that this is not a district that condones that kind of thing,” said Squires, who has lived in the Deerfield Twp. school community for more than a decade.

“When you make a mistake you have to make sure you correct that mistake. Sometimes it’s not always fast but we have to make sure we make the right correction,” he said. 

“This thing (reaction to the incident) is still evolving so it’s kind of hard for me to be critical of the district. They are still trying to make the correction and I think we should give them the opportunity to do so,” said Squires.

Under Ohio school law, the board now has until Feb. 9 to appoint a new board member and agreed during its meeting to accept applications until 4 p.m. on Jan. 24.

Applications will soon be available on the Kings Schools website.

The board will then vote at its Jan. 31 meeting – after interviewing all applicants – on who will fill McKiernan’s seat through his term, which ends December 2019.

Fireplace embers ignite house fire on Kensington Drive in Dayton

Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 10:08 PM
Updated: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 11:39 PM

Kensington Drive fire

UPDATE @ 10:49 p.m.: Burning embers that jumped from the fireplace onto something combustible led to the house fire on Kensington Drive, Dayton Fire Battalion Chief Barry Rose said. 

The resident started the fire and then left the house. He was not injured, Rose said. 

Rose estimated the damage to the structure and contents at $10,000.


Crews are on the scene of a house fire in the 1900 block of Kensington Drive in Dayton. 

We're hearing there is fire in the attic of the 1-1/2 story dwelling. Crews were dispatched about 9:45 p.m. 

OTHER LOCAL NEWS: Coroner IDs Greenville house fire victim

We're also hearing that everyone who was inside has been able to escape without injury. 

We have a crew on the way. We will update this developing report. Stay with for breaking news. 

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to 

Warren County’s Massie Twp. meeting tonight over fire department future

Published: Tuesday, January 16, 2018 @ 11:43 AM

            The Massie Twp. Board of Trustees has called a special meeting for 6:30 p.m. today to discuss the future of the township fire department.
The Massie Twp. Board of Trustees has called a special meeting for 6:30 p.m. today to discuss the future of the township fire department.

The Massie Twp. Board of Trustees called a special meeting for 6:30 p.m. today to discuss the future of the township fire department.

Fire Chief Scott Hines, the department’s only paid employee, resigned on Jan. 2 after learning he was under scrutiny for purchasing food for firefighters, and part of the department’s entirely volunteer force resigned too.

“They left us with a skeleton crew,” Trustee David Crisenbery said this morning.

MORE: Safety questions raised about Caesar Creek marina

The township, home to about 1,500 residents, is on the south side of Caesar Creek Lake. The department handles emergency calls from the lake.

Since Hines’ resignation, fire and emergency calls are being handled by the remaining department along with mutual aid from fire departments in Wayne Twp., Warren County, and Chester Twp., Clinton County.

The trustees are also weighing creating a joint fire district with Chester Twp. with new levies supporting the operation.

“That is the goal,” Trustee Daryl McKinney said.

MORE: Coach boating with daughter drowns in Caesar Creek Lake

A larger district qualifies for more grants, McKinney said.

The Massie Twp department operates on a $92,000 budget from two levies.

MORE: Beavercreek Twp. to build $2.5 million fire station

Crisenbery said the township could seek an additional local levy to fund part-time paid firefighters. Also, Hines’ replacement could be picked, Crisenbery added.

“Anything’s possible tonight,” Crisenbery said. “All options, I feel, should be on the table.”

Hines said he was working with the Village of Harveysburg on creating a fire department, taking over fire and ambulance services within its municipal limits within Massie Twp.

He accused Trustee Mark Dawson of “micromanaging” him for more than two years.

“I just got tired of it,” he said.

Dawson could not be reached to respond.

The meeting begins at 6:30 p.m. Tuesday at the township fire station, 10 N. Harveysburg Road.