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TAKE A LOOK: Is this local bridge safe? State engineers say yes

Published: Thursday, October 26, 2017 @ 6:00 AM
Updated: Friday, October 27, 2017 @ 3:42 PM

Hole in highway ramp bridge from Smithville to westbound U.S.35 remains

The damaged on-ramp bridge from northbound Smithville Road to U.S. 35 westbound will remain open and unrepaired until 2019 when that bridge is removed as part of a full-interchange rebuild, according to the Ohio Department of Transportation.

The ramp, which loops over U.S. 35, was damaged in November 2016 when a flatbed truck carrying a huge heating and cooling unit struck the underside of the bridge. ODOT spokeswoman Mandi Dillon said the impact caused significant damage to the edge of the bridge, and portions of concrete were removed for safety reasons.

The state received $86,204.61, which was full payment on its claim from the truck company’s insurance for the damage, said Matt Bruning, ODOT spokesman. 

ORIGINAL STORY: Ramp closes after truck hits bridge

The damaged “flyover” entrance ramp from northbound Smithville Road to westbound U.S. 35 will be eliminated when the interchange is reconstructed in 2019. JEREMY P. KELLEY / STAFF(Staff Writer)

Bruning said it is typical for the state to seek repayment from at-fault drivers or their insurers for damage caused to infrastructure in crashes.

The on-ramp has remained open since then, but appears to have a large bite out of the concrete where the bridge goes over the highway, with the side wall of the bridge removed. Concrete barriers have been placed on the ramp to prevent cars from getting too close to the damaged area.

Ohio Department of Transportation officials said the ramp is safe in its current condition.

“What you’re seeing is more exterior (issues),” Dillon said Wednesday. “We have had that bridge inspected. It is safe. What you’re seeing is not anything that’s weight-bearing or going to cause a safety issue.”

“I know it sometimes looks different, but it is safe.”

RELATED: Part of Stroop Road in Kettering to close for months

Ohio Department of Transportation engineers say the flyover ramp from Smithville Road to U.S. 35 is structurally safe despite damage from an accident. The bridge will not be repaired because it was scheduled to be eliminated in 2019, the state said. TY GREENLEES / STAFF(Staff Writer)

Dillon said ODOT keeps an eye on the bridge to make sure concrete around the impact area doesn’t crumble onto the highway.

“It would have required structural repair in that section that’s been blocked off, and they’re going to be (removing) it in 2019,” Dillon said. “It just made more sense with taxpayer dollars to wait rather than put all this money into it and then replace the interchange in a year.”

A description of the 2019 project says the looping “flyover” ramp that was damaged will be completely removed and not replaced.

RELATED: Alex-Bell bridge project to last through November

Instead, northbound traffic on Smithville to westbound U.S. 35 will stay straight on Smithville, going over U.S. 35, then turn left onto a new entrance ramp to westbound 35. That ramp will join the current ramp from southbound Smithville to westbound 35.

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Miamisburg HS uses national pastime to honor America’s heroes

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 8:02 PM



JAMES BUECHELE / STAFF
(JAMES BUECHELE / STAFF)

At Miamisburg High School, the national pastime also is an opportunity to honor America’s heroes.

The varsity baseball team on Saturday held its annual Veteran Appreciation Game, this time when they played Bellbrook High School.

Both teams started by shaking the hands of veterans across different generations, followed by a 21-gun, salute, then a rendition of taps.

“It’s just a way for us to honor people that don’t normally get enough credit,” said Miamisburg head coach Steve Kurtz.

>> UD and DECA students help clean up Five Oaks neighborhood

After the national anthem, professional skydivers from Team Fastrax brought down the ball for the first pitch, thrown by a Gold Star father, Paul Zanowick.

“It was an honor I think our son was smiling down,” he said.

He and his wife, Nanette, lost their son, Marine Cpl. Paul “Rocky” Zanowick II, almost seven years ago in Afghanistan. 

“I’m very touched and very proud of this community and what we do for the veterans and they honored our son today to make it extra special,” Nanette Zanowick said. 

>> Volunteers help at Five Rivers MetroParks 31st annual Adopt-a-Park event

“Not everywhere in the country is there so much care and concern for the military, but it is here,” Paul Zanowick said. 

Veterans are the real winners of the game, with proceeds from T-shirt sales benefitting the Wounded Warrior Project. 

Kurtz said he’s glad to support the veteran community. 

“It’s good to see that they smile and they know that we do care and we are extremely grateful for what they’ve done for us,” he said.

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

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Prince Charles will succeed Queen Elizabeth as head of the Commonwealth

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 5:32 AM

Queen Elizabeth II and her son, Prince Charles, attended the Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey last month.
WPA Pool/Getty Images
Queen Elizabeth II and her son, Prince Charles, attended the Commonwealth Service at Westminster Abbey last month.(WPA Pool/Getty Images)

It’s official: Prince Charles will succeed Queen Elizabeth as head of the Commonwealth, the BBC reported.

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The Queen had said it was her “sincere wish” that the Prince of Wales succeed her when she dies. Leaders of the Commonwealth discussed the issue before making their decision, the BBC reported.

Unlike the British crown, the lead role in the Commonwealth is non-hereditary, the BBC reported.

At a news conference, British Prime Minister Theresa May praised the Queen for her "vision and duty" in growing the Commonwealth from eight members to 53. She said it was "fitting" Prince Charles would succeed her due to his "proud support" of the Commonwealth "for more than four decades."

The role is largely symbolic and carries no maximum fixed term, the BBC reported.

The Queen turned 92 on Saturday. Charles, her oldest child, is 69.

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Queen Elizabeth turns 92: 5 fun facts

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 9:05 AM

Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne since 1952, when she was 25.
WPA Pool/Getty Images
Queen Elizabeth II has been on the throne since 1952, when she was 25.(WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Queen Elizabeth II turned 92 on Saturday, and after 65 years on the throne, she holds the distinction of ruling longer than any monarch in the United Kingdom’s history. 

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The queen actually celebrates two birthdays each year: her actual birthday, which is April 21; and one in June when she hosts a parade -- weather permitting -- called “Trooping the Color.”

Here are some other fun facts about the Queen: 

One queen, many presidents and popes

Harry S Truman was in the White House and Pope Pius XII was on the throne of St. Peter when Elizabeth II was coronated in 1952. Thirteen U.S. presidents and seven popes have served during her reign.

Her French is tres bien

The queen speaks fluent French, as evidenced by this video:

She has met rocket men (and women)

The queen has hosted Yuri Gagarin, the first man in space; Valentina Tereshkova, the first woman in space; and Neil Armstrong, Michael Collins and Edwin "Buzz" Aldrin, the crew of Apollo 11 that was the first crew to land on the moon. Armstrong and Aldrin were the first men to walk on the moon in July 1969.

Mechanically inclined

The monarch received driving and mechanic training as a member of the Women's Auxiliary Territorial Service during World War II.

Olympic experience

Elizabeth is the first head of state to open two Olympic games in two different countries. She opened the 2012 Summer Games in London and the 1976 Summer Olympics in Montreal.

Sources: The official website of the British Monarchy, wire services.

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Volunteers help at Five Rivers MetroParks 31st annual Adopt-a-Park

Published: Saturday, April 21, 2018 @ 4:23 PM

Five Rivers MetroParks held its 31st annual Adopt-a-Park cleanup event Saturday in honor of Earth Day. 

Volunteers of all ages helped remove trash, plant trees, repair trails, and prepare flower beds at more than 2 dozen sites. 

Volunteers received a free lunch at Riverscape and a T-shirt for their efforts. 

"We see families, individuals, church groups, students and children participate in Adopt-a-Park,” said Kevin Kepler, volunteer services manager for Five Rivers. 

“The community really comes out in full force, which is great because all this important work couldn't be accomplished without our dedicated volunteers. It's the perfect occasion to celebrate Earth Day with your fellow Daytonians,” Kepler said. 

RELATED: University of Dayton and Deca Prep High School students clean up Five Oaks

Last year, more than 1,800 volunteers removed 65,000 pounds of trash, 32 miles of river ways were cleaned and more than 15 acres of invasive plants were removed, according to a press release. 

"I think the success of this event reflects the community's support of MetroParks' mission to protect the region's natural heritage," said Kepler. 

Adopt-a-Park is sponsored by Vectren and Barrett Paving Materials, Inc. 

To find out more about Five Rivers MetroParks, log on to www.metroparks.org or call 937-275-PARK (7275).

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