OSP to cite driver who reached for cell phone, caused crashes on I-75 in Tipp City 

Published: Monday, May 14, 2018 @ 7:46 PM
Updated: Tuesday, May 15, 2018 @ 1:56 AM

I-75 southbound lanes shut down after accident

A driver troopers said crashed through a barrier wall on I-75 South in Tipp City on Monday night will be cited as the at-fault driver. Here’s the latest:

  • The left lanes on I-75 north and south, in the accident zone, will remain closed overnight
  • The at-fault southbound driver dropped a cell phone, reached for it and crashed near exit 68
  •  A pickup truck headed north on I-75 hit debris from the first vehicle and crashed
  • Both drivers were treated at a hospital for non-life threatening injuries

>> Classic Corvette thrown from trailer after jackknife crash on I-75

UPDATE @1:57 a.m.: The left lanes on both north and southbound sides will remain closed overnight. Cones are up blocking the lanes, according to the Ohio State Highway Patrol. 

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Crews will be out Tuesday working on repairs.

UPDATE @ 11:45 p.m.: Troopers with the Ohio State Highway Patrol were assisting with directing traffic in the area of the accident, which had the left lanes on north and south I-75 closed. The accident was reported about 7:15 p.m.

Sgt. Vee Witcher said the at-fault driver was traveling at 85 to 95 mph when her SUV crashed through the center of a barrier wall near exit 68 and came to rest on its top.

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Witcher said the state patrol will cite the driver for failure to control for sure, and possibly for speeding and distracted driving. 

The names, ages and hometowns of the drivers were not released.

A Mercury Mountaineer overturned on its top after crashing through a barrier wall on I-75 in Tipp City.(Scott Dammeyer)

The impact left a gaping hole in the barrier wall, which will be repaired by the Ohio Department of Transportation tonight or Tuesday morning, Witcher said. 

A large hole in the barrier wall on I-75 in Tipp City as a result of a 2-vehicle accident.(Scott Dammeyer)

Ironically, the barrier wall may have played a part in saving both lives. 

"The barrier wall did its job trying to maintain that vehicle on its side of the roadway," said Witcher. 

I-75 south traffic had to be rerouted to County Road 25A initially after the accident while the northbound center and right lanes remained open.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgo.com. 

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9 members of one family among 17 killed in duck boat accident on lake in Branson, Missouri 

Published: Saturday, July 21, 2018 @ 8:46 AM
Updated: Saturday, July 21, 2018 @ 8:46 AM

9 Members of Same Family Among 17 Killed in Duck Boat Accident

A duck boat accident on Table Rock Lake in Branson, Missouri, killed 17 people Thursday night, including the boat’s driver and nine members of an Indiana family, according to authorities. Fourteen other people were injured.

>> Read more trending news 

Update 8:45 a.m. EDT July 21: The Stone County coroner confirmed to KSDK that William Asher, 69, and his girlfriend, Rose Hamann, were among those killed in Thursday night's duck boat accident in Missouri.

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The news station reported that the couple lived in St. Louis County, Missouri. They were visiting Branson to celebrate Hamann’s birthday, which was on Monday, according KSDK.

Todd Dennison’s mother, 64-year-old Leslie Dennison, was also killed in the boat accident, the Kansas City Star reported. In an emotional and brief interview Friday, Todd Dennison told the newspaper that his mother was visiting Branson with his 12-year-old daughter, Alicia, and that they were together for less than an hour before they boarded the duck boat.

He told the Star that while in the hospital on Thursday night, his daughter told him that she could feel her grandmother pushing her upward from below while the boat was sinking.
“She said her grandmother saved her,” Todd Dennison told the Star.

Update 1:30 a.m. EDT July 21: Authorities have identified more victims in the duck boat accident.

Steve Smith and his teenage son, Lance Smith, from Osceola, Arkansas, were among those killed in the crash.

Steve Smith was a pastor and Lance Smith was preparing to open his own church in less than a week, according to CNN, first reported by The Christian Chronicle

Steve Smith’s daughter, Loren Smith, suffered a concussion during the accident but survived.

Smith’s wife, Pam Smith, opted to stay behind and was not on the boat.

William and Janice Bright from Higginsville, Missouri, near Kansas City, were also identified as victims in the crash.

WDAF reports that the couple had three children, 16 grandchildren and had been married for 45 years.

“My great nieces and nephews now have no grandparents,” Karen Abbott, William Bright’s sister, told WDAF.

Update 11:00 p.m. EDT July 20: A summer vacation ended in tragedy for nine members of an Indiana family, along with eight other tourists, killed when a duck boat capsized Thursday evening on a lake in Branson, Missouri.

The Coleman family had traveled to Branson for their annual road trip, according to The New York Times, which interviewed Carolyn Coleman.

Coleman said she lost two of her brothers-in-law and that three generations of the family died in the accident, including four young children, the Times reported.

“We just lost some wonderful people,” she said.

The Indianapolis Star reported that the four children killed in the accident were all under the age of 10.

"They were very loved," Ingrid Coleman Douglas said in a telephone interview with the Star.

Coleman Douglas said the victims included two of her uncles, cousins and their children.

"It’s a huge family on all sides. It’s unimaginable. I would never have thought I would have lost this number of people this way," she said.

Members of the Coleman family.(Gary Coleman)

Coleman Douglas identified the victims as her uncles Horace "Butch" Coleman and Irving Raymond Coleman; Horace Coleman's wife, Belinda Coleman; her cousins, Angela Coleman and Glenn Coleman; Angela's 2-year-old son Maxwell; Glenn's two sons Evan and Reece; and his 1-year-old daughter, Arya.

Glenn's wife, Tia Coleman, and Angela's older son, whose name has not been released, survived the accident, the Star reported.

Update 5:15 p.m. EDT July 20: Stone County authorities now say all 17 of the victims in the duck boat accident have been accounted for and that nine of the victims were from the same family, according to Gov. Mike Parson’s office. Two members of the family, identified by local news outlets as the Coleman family, survived. Officials said the victims range in age from 1 to 70 years old.

 

Meantime, mourners are putting flowers on the victims’ cars in the Ride the Ducks parking lot, and the community of Branson, Missouri, is holding several candlelight vigils Friday night in memory of those killed. 

One of the vigils is scheduled at Table Rock Lake where the accident happened, according to KY3-TV.

 

Update 4:30 p.m. EDT July 20: Family and friends are mourning the staggering loss of life on Table Rock Lake Thursday evening.

One woman lost nine members of her family, USA Today reported, citing Gov. Mike Parson’s office.

 

Update 2:20 p.m. EDT July 20: Branson Mayor Karen Best told The Associated Press that Bob Williams, the man who was driving the Ride the Ducks boat that sunk Thursday in a southwest Missouri lake, was a “great ambassador for Branson” who “was at every event.”

Seventeen people died, including Williams, and 14 others were injured Thursday when the duck boat capsized in Table Rock Lake, according to authorities.

Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said earlier Friday that the boat’s captain survived.

In a statement posted on Facebook, employees of Ride the Ducks Branson said the business would be closed “while we support the investigation, and to allow time to grieve for the families and the community.”

“This incident has deeply affected all of us. Words cannot convey how profoundly our hearts are breaking,” the statement said. “Thank you for your support, and we ask that your thoughts and prayers be with the families during this time.”

Update 11:40 a.m. EDT July 20: Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said Friday morning that authorities recovered four more bodies after a duck boat capsized in southwest Missouri, KSMU reported, bringing the death toll from Thursday’s incident to 17.

 

Rader said 14 people were taken to hospitals after the incident. He said the driver of the Ride the Ducks boat died. The captain survived.

Update 11:20 a.m. EDT July 20: Nearly two decades ago, the National Transportation Safety Board issued a warning about boats with overhead canopies like the one that sank Thursday on Table Rock Lake after a deadly accident claimed 13 lives in Arkansas, according to the Kansas City Star.

 

The Miss Majestic duck boat was carrying 21 passengers when it sank in 1999 in Lake Hamilton, the Star reported. Authorities found seven dead passengers trapped inside the boat when they recovered it, four of which were pinned to the underside of the canopy, according to the Star.

“Contributing to the high loss of life was a continuous canopy roof that entrapped passengers within the sinking vehicle,” NTSB officials said in an accident report.

Authorities continued searching Friday for four people who are presumed dead after Thursday’s accident in southwest Missouri. Officials said 13 other people have been confirmed dead in the incident.

Update 10:25 a.m. EDT July 20: Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said divers are going back in the water Friday in search of four people who remain missing and are presumed dead after Thursday’s duck boat accident on Table Rock Lake.

Rader said the search had shifted to “recovery mode for the bodies that are still missing,” at a news conference Friday morning.

"It's been a long night,” Rader said. “It's been a very trying night.”

 

Rader said the driver of the Ride the Ducks boat died but that the captain survived.

Update 10:05 a.m. EDT July 20: Authorities are expected to provide an update on the investigation into Thursday's deadly duck boat accident in Missouri at a news conference Friday.

Update 9:55 a.m. EDT July 20: President Donald Trump shared sympathies Friday to the families and friends of the people involved in Thursday’s deadly duck boat accident in southwest Missouri.

“Such a tragedy, such a great loss,” the president wrote Friday in a tweet. “May God be with you all!”

 

Update 8:15 a.m. EDT July 20: Officials with the State Highway Patrol said Friday that two more bodies have been found after Thursday’s duck boat accident in southwest Missouri, bringing the death toll to 13.

 >> On AJC.com: Bahamas boating tragedy brings vacation safety to the forefront

State Highway Patrol Sgt. Jason Pace said four other people remained missing.

 

Original report: Stone County Sheriff Doug Rader said 14 people were taken to hospitals after the incident. Seven were being treated early Friday, he said.

The boat capsized after a strong line of thunderstorms moved through the area around 7 p.m. Thursday. Rader said weather “was a factor” in the incident.

Authorities said the boat had 31 people on board, including children, when it capsized. 

The boat had life jackets on board, according to CNN. The news network reported that other boats on the water docked before the bad weather hit.

 
Emergency responders work at Table Rock Lake after a deadly boat accident in Branson, Missouri. Officials said a tourist boat has apparently capsized on the lake. At least 8 people are confirmed dead.(Nathan Papes/AP)

The National Transportation Safety Board has sent a team to investigate and are asking anyone who witnessed the accident to come forward.

A dive team and rescue officials worked through the night to find survivors.

They ended the search around 11 p.m., according to KY3.

Rescue crews work at the scene of a deadly boat accident at Table Rock Lake in Branson, Mo., Thursday, July 19, 2018.(Andrew Jansen/AP)

Emergency responders set up a staging area overnight on the lakeshore near the Showboat Branson Belle, local media reported, although the Belle was not involved in the accident.

Branson officials opened an emergency shelter inside city hall for the victims.

National Weather Service meteorologist Steve Linderberg said a top wind speed of 63 mph was measured around 7 p.m. Thursday at Branson Airport. 

“There’s nothing to slow down winds in an open area,” he said.

Missouri Gov. Mike Parson is watching the developments.

 

DUKW, known as duck boats, are six-wheel-drive amphibious vehicles that were used by the U.S. military during World War II and the Korean War. 

Since then, duck boat tours have become popular and are offered on lakes and rivers around the United States, including Missouri, Wisconsin, Massachusetts and Alabama.

 

Ripley Entertainment acquired the Ride The Ducks in Branson in late 2017 from Ride the Ducks International, a subsidiary of Norcross, Georgia-based Herschend Family Entertainment Corp.

Ride the Ducks International manufactures amphibious vehicles and licenses them for tours at affiliates. It also operates duck tours at Stone Mountain Park in Georgia. The company formerly operated tours in several other cities, including Baltimore, San Francisco and Philadelphia. But in recent years it ended operations following deadly accidents. 

In 2015, a Ride the Ducks tour bus collided with a charter bus carrying student on the Aurora bridge in Seattle.

Five students were killed and several others injured.

A charter bus, left, and an amphibious Ride the Ducks tour vehicle collided on the Aurora Bridge in downtown Seattle on Thursday, Sept. 24, 2015.(Elaine Thompson, AP)

The Associated Press and The Atlanta Journal-Constitution contributed to this report.

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Trailer occupied with horses flipped on its side in Middletown

Published: Saturday, July 21, 2018 @ 4:35 AM

Police and fire crews are on scene of a flipped over horse trailer on its side near Central Avenue and S. Main Street in Middletown.

Scanner reports indicated the incident occurred Saturday at approximately 4:10 a.m. 

The flip caused one horse to be suspended from the trailer in an upside down state, according to scanner reports. The horse was able to be cut loose and is in distress, but otherwise OK. 

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Police have attempted to contact a local veterinarian for assistance.

It is unknown how many horses were inside the trailer at the time of the incident.

We will update this story as more details become available.

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Multiple vehicle accident reported near W. National Rd. in Springfield

Published: Thursday, July 19, 2018 @ 7:10 PM

An accident involving three vehicles has been reported in front of 2700 W. National Road in Springfield.

According to scanner reports, Ohio State Highway Patrol units were dispatched to the scene at approximately 6:51 p.m. A second medic is also en route.

One person has reportedly been transported to the hospital, injuries unknown. 

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We will update this story as more information becomes available.

Got a tip? Call our monitored 24-hour line, 937-259-2237, or send it to newsdesk@cmgohio.com.

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Downtown Dayton developer lands state funds for $18M project

Published: Wednesday, June 20, 2018 @ 10:14 AM
Updated: Thursday, July 19, 2018 @ 8:42 AM

Developer Weyland Ventures plans to spend about $18 million converting the Dayton Motor Car building into new offices. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF
Developer Weyland Ventures plans to spend about $18 million converting the Dayton Motor Car building into new offices. CORNELIUS FROLIK / STAFF

The developer behind one of downtown’s hottest new dining and drinking destinations and some of its newest housing has been awarded funding for another project.

The Ohio Development Services Agency today announced it has allocated $1.8 million in state historic tax credits to support the renovation of the Dayton Motor Car building at 15 McDonough St.

Kentucky-based developer Weyland Ventures proposes spending more than $18.2 million to convert the six-story building, just east of the Oregon District, into modern offices for high-tech, creative design and other firms and users.

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MORE: As $8M project wraps up, here’s what’s next for developer

Within five years of operation, the building could house about 260 full-time employees, according to Weyland Ventures’ application for state historic tax credits.

“Dayton is kind of our second city at this point,” said Mariah Gratz, the CEO of Weyland Ventures.

Weyland Ventures used about $1.9 million it was awarded in December 2014 to rehab the old Weustoff and Getz building at 210 Wayne Ave. into the Wheelhouse Lofts, which offers 40 apartments.

The building is also home to the popular restaurant and bar the Troll Pub at the Wheelhouse, which opened around St. Patrick’s Day.

Weyland Ventures has completed many projects in Louisville that have helped transform its downtown.

Weyland Ventures says the motor car building, like many others in Dayton, is outdated.

But the firm said it has experience repurposing similar concrete industrial buildings and likes its open floor plates and abundant natural light.

The building, which is about 80,000 square feet, offers in-demand features, like large windows and flexible space configurations, the developer said.

RELATED: The $6M ask: Developers seek funds for Dayton office, housing projects

Gosiger, a robotics and technology company headquartered at 108 McDonough St., plans to occupy space in the building. Bill Weyland, the principal of Weyland Ventures, and the owner of Gosiger have been friends for decades.

Weyland Ventures plans to rehab the exterior of the building and put in new HVAC and mechanical and electrical systems, which will remain exposed inside.

The building’s eastern facade will be cleaned, repaired and repainted. The historic windows will be repaired or replaced.

Weyland Ventures hopes to get construction underway by the end of the year, with a roughly 12-month construction schedule, Gratz said.

Converting the building into offices will help build on the momentum in downtown and the Webster Station area, which is a hotbed of new housing, restaurants and breweries, the firm said.

Weyland Ventures’ development of the Wheelhouse and the Dayton Motor Car building are part of its efforts to create a new district called Oregon East.

The new district seeks to offer a mix of housing, entertainment, dining and drinking establishments and other amenities.

RELATED: Developer acquires 158-year-old Oregon District church

Future projects are expected to fill in some of the space between the historic structures with new construction, likely of housing and other components that make it a place where people want to be, Gratz said.

Weyland Ventures also has acquired Saint Paul Lutheran Church, located at 239 Wayne Ave., and is looking for tenants.

“We think it could make a fantastic restaurant or entertainment venue,” Gratz said.

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