Alabama News

Friday, December 2, 2022

Guntersville’s new fire chief ready to work

Brian Walls is taking over Guntersville’s fire and rescue department after Brian Waldrop retired. Walls has served on the fire and rescue squad since 2004, and has served as deputy chief since 2015. “Lot of mixed emotions. I’m humbled, honored, and excited,” Walls said. “(Waldrop) left some big shoes to walk in.” Walls said the transition to his new role was easy. “When I came in on Tuesday morning as the newly appointed fire chief, we just went to work. I had my duties, but I had to check his phone to see if anyone was buzzing through.” Walls told WAFF that the city of Guntersville provides unique challenges for a fire and rescue department. “It’s very rare that you run into the same thing twice because of where we live with the mountains, the lake, and everything in between,” he said.
WAFF-TV NBC 48 Huntsville

Huntsville Firefighters Resolve Pay Scale Issue

After three years of strong advocacy work by Huntsville, AL Local 1833 leaders, the City of Huntsville enacted a revised pay plan ensuring firefighters will now make equitable wages. The changes gave most Local 1833 members between a 6 and 25 percent raise. “I am very proud of the hard work Local 1833 President Hunter Robinson and his team put in to resolve this issue on behalf of their members,” said Dave Harer, Professional Fire Fighters of Alabama president. “Not only have many of the issues with the pay plan been fixed, but the raise in compensation puts Huntington fifth in the state for wages, which helps morale, recruitment, and retention.” The issues date back to 2019 when the city manager created and implemented a new pay scale for city employees. While the plan included several pay increases, it soon became clear that differences in pay raise percentages, seniority, and other variables considered.

Fire department called over smoking McDonald’s ice cream machine in Meridianville

The ice cream machine at McDonald’s is keeping true to its reputation as things got heated at the location in Meridianville, according to local fire officials. Captain Brandon Burgess with the Meridianville Volunteer Fire Department told News 19 that the electric motor inside the ice cream machine overheated and caused smoke inside the restaurant. Fire crews received the call around 1:26 p.m. on Thursday. Burgess emphasized that there was no fire and no customers were inside the building at the time. The machine was unplugged and the situation was quickly resolved. However, Burgess says the location is closed for the time being and will stay that way until the night shift crew arrives, as employees simply got into their cars and left once the incident was over.
WKRG-TV CBS 5 Mobile

One person injured after partial building collapse at Carraway demo site in Birmingham

Crews responded to a partial building collapse at the old Carraway Hospital demo site Thursday afternoon. Birmingham Fire and Rescue crews responded to the collapse at 25th Street North & Walnut Hill Circle. Officials say part of a building collapsed onto a piece of machinery that was being used to demo the building. The operator of that machine suffered some injuries, but we’re told he was “alert and conscious” and is being taken to an area emergency room for treatment. Corporate Realty, who is developing the property, released the following statement about the incident: Our top concern is for the injured worker, and our thoughts are with him and his family. We are in touch with the demolition contractor, and we are gratified to hear that his injuries are being treated and that he is expected to make a full recovery.
WBRC-TV FOX 6 Birmingham

Thursday, December 1, 2022

Fire damages Dothan home as storms strike

A home in Dothan’s historic Garden District received damage when it burned as severe storms passed through the city. The fire occurred on Wednesday morning along Gardenia Drive. No injuries were reported in the fire that occurred with frequent lightning strikes in the aea. Storms pelted south Alabama Wednesday, causing damage in several counties, and killing two in a rural area near Montgomery.
WTVY-TV CBS 4 Dothan

Massive Moody brush fire could smolder for weeks

VIDEO: Residents in one Moody community are coping with smoke from a massive landfill fire. The blaze is burning natural debris, like dead trees, in a 50-acre area near Blackjack Road. For the last several days, flames above and below ground have grown closer to half a dozen homes, like Eric Cottingham's. "It was scary, but I wasn't so much scared physically at the moment. But I was scared for my house, where my family lives," Cottingham said. Last night, firefighters stood guard to protect property from the growing inferno. Towering flames consumed tall trees like toothpicks Tuesday night. A fire break carved out with a bulldozer around the landfill's perimeter, plus favorable weather overnight, helped contained the threat by lunch on Wednesday.
WVTM-TV NBC 13 Birmingham

Alabama leaders evaluate rural severe weather safety options

Being prepared during severe weather is at the top of minds after deadly storms swept across the state early Wednesday morning. While some counties were impacted more than others, rural counties continue to figure out the best way to provide safe shelter for residents. Alabama’s latest round of severe weather impacted the following 20 counties: Barbour, Blount, Calhoun, Clarke, Chambers, Cherokee, Colbert, Elmore, Etowah, Greene, Hale, Jefferson, Lee, Macon, Montgomery, Shelby, St. Clair, Sumter, Washington, and Walker. There were possibly 13 tornadoes located in 6 counties: Washington, Sumter, Hale, Montgomery, Barbour and Elmore, according to Alabama Emergency Management Agency acting director Jeff Smitherman. “That 13 could be reduced,” said Smitherman. “And, sometimes, they actually find damage reported that wasn’t linked to a radar.”
WFSA-TV NBC 12 Montgomery

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