Home Emergency Management News EDM Wednesday Briefing: Four Law Enforcement Officers Shot

EDM Wednesday Briefing: Four Law Enforcement Officers Shot


Emergency and disaster management briefing for January 17, 2018: Four law enforcement officers in York County, South Carolina were shot when responding to a domestic disturbance call, an earthquake strikes on the New Madrid fault line affecting Missouri and nearby states, two Naval commanders face negligent homicide charges for ship collisions, Mount Mayon in the Philippines spews lava and ash as residents flee, the worst oil ship disaster in decades produces two oil slicks in the South China Sea, a mezzanine walkway collapse in Indonesia injures at least 70 college students, a winter storm hits the Deep South with sleet, snow, and frigid temperatures, and two utility companies are being sued for the mudslides in California.

  1. Early Tuesday morning, four law enforcement officers in York County, South Carolina were shot while they were looking for the suspect from a domestic incident call. The alleged suspect, Christian Thomas McCall, 47, who also was wounded in the shootout, had already fled the home into the woods by the time officers responded to the call. The officers, some of whom were SWAT team members, were shot at different times as they searched the woods for the alleged suspect, who also fired upon, and struck, the police helicopter. 
  2. An earthquake struck parts of southern Missouri, Tennessee, and Arkansas Tuesday morning, along the New Madrid fault line. According to the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS), the quake measured a 3.6 magnitude, occurred at around 11:00 a.m., and its center was located near Caruthersville, Missouri, a city north of Memphis and West of Nashville. The quake, which was about 5.7 miles deep, produced light shaking in the area.
  3. Two Naval Commanders are facing negligent homicide charges after the separate crashes of two ships off Asia last year. The USS Fitzgerald collided with a commercial ship just of the coast of Japan last June, killing seven sailors, and in August, the USS John S. McCain collided with an oil tanker in Southeast Asia, killing 10 sailors. The Navy determined both to be avoidable collisions, and cited a lack of procedural compliance, complacency, and over-confidence as factors that contributed to the two collisions. 
  4. More than 21,000 people living near Mount Mayon in the Philippines fled the area on Tuesday as lava spurted from the now active volcano and flowed some 1.2 miles away and ash fell on several villages in the Albay province. The recent activity has prompted authorities to set up checkpoints to keep tourists from venturing too close to the area, and to strongly advise residents to avoid the 3.7 to 4.3 mile danger zone around the volcano.  Officials are working to set up evacuation areas for farm animals to help protect families who wish to re-enter the danger zone to check on property and livestock. 
  5. The worst oil ship disaster in decades has caused two oil slicks that are now visible in the East China Sea following the collision of two vessels last week, one of which was an Iranian oil tanker that caught fire and eventually sank. One slick, which is larger and thicker, covers an area of 26.6 square miles, while the other thinner, less concentrated slick is 15.4 square miles. Three bodies were pulled from the water near the wreckage with the remaining 29 crew members presumed dead as officials prepare to search the wreckage, which has been located at a depth of about 377 feet under sea level. 
  6. A mezzanine walkway collapsed at the Indonesian Stock Exchange on Monday and sent university students plummeting to the ground. At least 70 people were injured when the walkway collapsed and pinned them beneath concrete slabs and other heavy debris after several cables broke away from the ceiling due to a concentration of weight in one area. Preliminary reports suggest that loose or corroded joints may have caused the failure that led to the sudden collapse of the walkway floor.
  7. A second winter storm has wreaked havoc all the way from Texas to New England as a mix of rain, sleet, ice, and snow fell on Tuesday and into Wednesday as temperatures plummeted across the area behind the storm. The storm forced hundreds of flight cancellations on Tuesday and Wednesday, and airlines have waived change fees as travelers scramble to rebook flights to their destinations. The wintry weather shut down interstates in Louisiana, closed airports in Texas and produced wind chill advisories that prompted the closure of many schools in Alabama, Arkansas, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Missouri, Mississippi, Tennessee and Texas. 
  8. Two utility companies are being sued for the widespread death and destruction caused by last week's mudslides in California. Named in the suit are Southern California Edison (SCE)--accused of poor maintenance practices that led to the start of theThomas Fire, and the Montecito Water District for their part in contributing to the mudslides. At least 115 homes were destroyed and about 240 damaged during the mudslides, which killed at least 20 people, left three people missing, and injured dozens.

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.