Home Emergency Management News EDM Wednesday Briefing: Officer Shot, School Bus Crash, Hurricane Otto, Wildfires

EDM Wednesday Briefing: Officer Shot, School Bus Crash, Hurricane Otto, Wildfires


Emergency and disaster management briefing for November 23, 2016

  1. A Wayne State University police officer was shot in the head on Tuesday evening near its campus in Detroit, MI after stopping an individual on a bicycle. Officials reported that the police officer, a five-year veteran of the force, was in critical condition. Prior to the shooting, the officer had been investigating thefts of vehicle navigation systems in the area. Deangelo Davis, whom officials listed as a person of interest in the shooting, was taken into custody late Tuesday evening.
  2. Twelve young children remain hospitalized in Chattanooga, TN following a deadly school bus crash on Monday afternoon involving 37 students from Woodmore Elementary. Five children died in the crash--three were in fourth grade, one was in first grade, and the other was in kindergarten. Children's Hospital at Erlanger reported late Tuesday that of those children still hospitalized, six were listed in critical condition, with the other six listed as being in stable condition. Another 20 children were treated for bruises, lacerations, wrist and ankle soreness before being released.
  3. Authorities have arrested the driver of the deadly school bus crash in Chattanooga, TN, charging Johnthony Walker, a 24-year-old male, with reckless driving, reckless endangerment, and five counts of vehicular homicide following the crash. The investigation into the incident is ongoing, and a federal probe into the crash has been launched by the National Transportation Safety Bureau (NTSB). According to reports, the bus may have struck a utility pole prior to flipping over and slamming into a tree. Authorities are looking into whether speed or alcohol may have played a part in the crash. A black box was present on the bus and police will be reviewing the video to help pinpoint the exact cause of the crash.
  4. During a restart of the alkylation unit which had been down for repairs, a compressor blew out sparking a fire that critically injured four people at an Exxon Mobile refinery in Baton Rouge, Louisiana on Tuesday. Four people, two women operators and two contractors, were admitted to the regional burn unit at Baton Rouge General Hospital in critical condition. The fire was the fourth incident to occur at Gulf area refineries in just two days.
  5. Climate change has the nation's children concerned and student's are taking action with the help of Our Children's Trust nonprofit based in Oregon. Eight children in Washington State are asking a judge to find the state in contempt of courts for failing to enact measures to protect them and future generation from the harmful effects of climate change. The lawsuit, if won, would require the state to adopt carbon emission reductions based on the most current and relevant science. Students in Oregon are claiming that their constitutional rights to life, liberty, and property, have been violated by the federal government and have filed charges against the Obama administration. Earlier this month, a federal judge in Eugene, Oregon allowed the actions filed to move forward.
  6. Tropical Depression 16 became Hurricane Otto on Tuesday, the seventh hurricane of the 2016 season, setting its sights on Nicaragua and Costa Rica, possibly as a Category 2 hurricane. The storm, currently a Category 1, is situated just about 100 miles north of Panama City, where three people have died and at least four are missing. Hurricane Otto is a slow-moving storm and is expected to impact an area with steep terrain, increasing the chances for landslides and flooding due to extended rainfalls.
  7. Sabra foods announced a voluntary recall on some of its hummus and spreads due to concerns of a possible listeria contamination. Out of an abundance of caution, the recall was issued after the factory found Listeria Monocytognes in its manufacturing facility. The facility is currently undergoing a complete cleaning as part of its recall and information regarding the recall is available at a special Sabra hummus recall website. Other products recently recalled over concerns of Listeria contamination include Nestle drumsticks frozen treat, select Nutrisystem protein bars, and just last week, Weight Watchers Smart Ones Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough Sundae frozen dessert.
  8. Fires burning across the southern states, including North Carolina, Georgia, Tennessee, and South Carolina have consumed more than 120,000 acres combined and are at various stages of containment. In Tennessee, arson is suspected in approximately 70 percent of the fires and Gov. Bill Haslam has committed to pursuing the individuals responsible. The state has spent an estimated $5.5 million to fight the fires. Georgia's Rough Ridge Fire, which was started by lightning and has burned nearly 28,000 acres, was 55 percent contained as of Monday, while the Tellico Fire in North Carolina that was started by humans and burned over 13,800 acres, was 91 percent contained.
  9. A man in South Lake Tahoe has been arrested after being identified in surveillance video for allegedly placing an unknown substance on foods in an area restaurant. The suspect, Harry Dally, a 43-year-old male, was arrested after authorities searched the man's home and found "items of interest" related to the investigation at the Hot Wok Chinese Restaurant. In a shopping center nearby, a similar crime occurred at Baja Fresh and police believe the crimes may be connected but are currently waiting for surveillance footage from that restaurant.

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.