Home Emergency Management News EDM Friday Briefing: Texas Authorities Seek Interstate Shooting Suspects
EDM Friday Briefing: Texas Authorities Seek Interstate Shooting Suspects

EDM Friday Briefing: Texas Authorities Seek Interstate Shooting Suspects

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Emergency and disaster management briefing for August 9, 2019: A shooting on Interstate 10 East near Houston, Texas, leaves two people dead; Canadian officials believe they have found the bodies of the two teen fugitives suspected of murder; Tennessee issued a BlueAlert for an escaped convict suspected of murdering a correctional officer; a new report alleges Microsoft contractors are listening in on Skype conversations; monsoon rains in India have inundated four states with widespread flooding and landslides; officials in Los Angeles have confirmed that a person infected with the measles traveled through Union Station in late July; more than 20 people were injured when a strong earthquake struck Turkey on Thursday; and the emergency management agency in Wayne County, Ohio, is seeking disaster assistance after major flooding in July.

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1) Authorities are looking for two suspects, one of whom opened fire on a freeway in Texas during rush hour, leaving two people dead. The incident occurred on Interstate 10 East near Houston, after one vehicle rear-ended another. Two people exited the vehicle that hit the one in front of them and approached the hit vehicle; one person began firing upon the occupants. Police say multiple rounds were fired into the windshield. The two occupants, despite the efforts of Good Samaritans with EMS training, were pronounced dead at the scene.

2) Officials in Canada believe the bodies of two Canadian fugitives wanted in connection with three murders, have been found in Manitoba. Police found the bodies 5.6 miles from the burned-out SUV that officials believe belonged to them, and about a half mile from -- and just five days after -- discovering several items directly linked to the suspects on the bank of the Nelson River. Authorities have not speculated as to the cause of death, and an autopsy has been scheduled in Winnipeg to confirm the identity of both bodies and to determine the cause of death.

3) A Blue Alert was issued in Tennessee on Wednesday after a prison inmate escaped from the West Tennessee State Penitentiary. The escapee, Curtis Watson, 44, who is suspected in the murder of a correctional officer is considered dangerous, according the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI). He should not be approached, and authorities recommend that citizens call 911 instead. Police found the body of Debra Johnson, 64, in her residence on the prison property around 11:30 a.m., placed the prison on lockdown, conducted a count and found Watson missing.

4) A new report alleges that Microsoft contractors are listening to private conversations conducted on Skype. The conversation snippets, which Microsoft stated are just a few seconds long (although some can be longer), are being listened to through the use of the app's translation service. According to reports, Microsoft alleges that the information is recorded through a secure online portal, and the company asks users for permission before they agree to use the app. The company did state that steps are taken to remove personally identifying information, such as device identification numbers and users.

5) Monsoon rains have caused widespread, devastating floods and landslides in the Indian states of Karnataka, Kerala and Maharashtra. Scores of people have died, including at least 12 people who died when a rescue boat capsized in Brahamnal village on Friday. Hundreds of thousands of people in villages and towns have been displaced across the region. Rescue efforts are hampered due to treacherous conditions, including continued rainfall, rising water and unstable ground.

6) Officials in Los Angeles have confirmed that a person infected with the measles traveled through Union Station in late July. The person, a Los Angeles resident who has not been identified, traveled through the terminal's Bay No. 8 on July 23 between the hours of 12:15 p.m. and 3:15 p.m., potentially exposing others to the disease. Anyone who was exposed to the infected person, especially those not vaccinated against this highly contagious disease, are at risk of developing the measles for up to 21 days after exposure.

7) Turkey was struck by a strong earthquake on Thursday afternoon that left over 20 people injured. The magnitude 5.8 quake struck near Bozkurt in Denzili province, at a depth of about 6.2 miles around 2:25 p.m. local time. The quake damaged multiple homes and destroyed at least two others. Multiple homes and buildings were also damaged in the nearby towns of Tutluca and Agdan, although no injuries were reported in those locations.

8) Emergency management officials in Wayne County, Ohio, are hoping to secure assistance for residents and businesses affected by recent flooding in the area. The Wayne County Emergency Management Agency has spent the last two weeks assessing uninsured damages to see if the county can qualify to receive assistance from the Small Business Administration through their loan program. Flooding impacted the Wooster area, including Apple Creek and Franklin Township on July 21, resulting in the evacuation of more than 400 people.

 

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Kimberly Arsenault Kimberly Arsenault serves as an intern at the Cleveland/Bradley County Emergency Management Agency where she works on plan revisions and special projects. Previously, Kimberly spent 15 years in commercial and business aviation. Her positions included station manager at the former Midwest Express Airlines, as well as corporate flight attendant, inflight manager, and charter flight coordinator. Kimberly currently holds a master's degree in emergency and disaster management from American Public University.