Friday, March 16, 2007
Flames erupt from a home on South Main Street. Jacksboro Volunteer Fire Department responded to a call to the home of Mike and Joanne Florance, which came in at about 8 p.m. Saturday, only to discover flames coming from the rear of the home. After ensuring the residence was unoccupied, they quickly moved to get a handle on the blaze. As the fire quickly spread, help was summoned from Jack County Rural Fire Department stations, including Perrin, Cundiff, Bryson, Jermyn and East Jack County, who answered with extra equipment and manpower. Quick work saved a nearby residence; however, damage to the Florance home was quite extensive. Firefighters fought the blaze for more than an hour as traffic was stopped along Hwy. 281 in both directions for more than 30 minutes during the ordeal. The cause of the fire is still under investigation. (Photo by Jana Lynn Rupe)
Accident sends seven to hospitals
Friday, March 16, 2007
A vehicle traveling westbound Sunday afternoon on State Highway 114 caused a major traffic accident, second seven people to area hospitals. According to Department of Public Safety Senior Trooper James Rhoten, who assisted Trooper Todd Lewis at the scene, 20-year-old Maria Deaguero of Wichita Falls was driving west in a 2000 Chevrolet Malibu at about 2:30 p.m. when she failed to yield to oncoming traffic at the intersection with U.S. Highway 281. The front end of Deaguero’s Malibu struck the left side of a 2002 GMC Envoy driven by Pete Wolf, 47, of Windthorst. The impact sent the Envoy off the right side of the roadway where it overturned.
The Malibu spun several times to the right before coming to a stop. Deaguero was taken by helicopter to John Peter Smith Hospital in Fort Worth; Wolf was transported by ambulance to Faith Community Hospital and later airlifted to a Wichita Falls hospital. The five passengers in the Malibu, whose ages ranged from 1 to 22, were taken by ambulances from Jacksboro and Bryson to Faith Community Hospital. At least two of the victims were later transferred to other hospitals. The identities and scope of the passengers’ and drivers’ injuries were not available, Rhoten said. Paramedics and EMTs from Faith Community Hospital and Bryson EMS services were dispatched, along with all available first-responders, to help out at the scene.
East Jack County Gets New Fire Truck
The East Jack County Rural Volunteer Fire Department has a new weapon in the war on wildfires. A grant enabled the department to purchase the new brush truck. The entire department met at the fire hall last month to take delivery and watch a demonstration on the features of the new acquisition. Training will be necessary to get all members up to speed on how to use the equipment properly. EJCRVFD/Shawver Station, Station 8 in the Jack County VFD lineup, is a combined effort of the communities of Wizard Wells, Joplin and Vineyard, which has come a long way since its inception in 1997. In the beginning, volunteer firefighters met at churches in Wizard and Joplin. Now meetings are held at the fire hall located off FM 1156 in downtown Vineyard. It is through the dedication of volunteers and generous donations from the community that this fire department has been able to flourish. Additionally, EJCRVFD will hold its annual barbecue from 5-8 p.m. Saturday, June 2, at the fire hall. The public is welcome to bring the whole family and support a great cause. There will be great food, music, door prizes and raffles for a gift certificate and a rifle. For information or to purchase a raffle ticket, contact any an East Jack County Rural Volunteer Fire Department firefighter.
Volunteers climb aboard the newest weapon in their arsenal. Jack County Rural Fire Department Station 3, Jermyn, took delivery of a brand new Ford F750 brush truck Tuesday night, bringing their inventory of fire trucks to three. A $54,000 grant from the Texas Forest Service, coupled with a $6,000 contribution from JCRFD coffers and about $20,000 in donations from the community, helped pay for the 900-gallon truck, said Station 3 Chief Les Guthrie. “We were able to take the TFS grant, which was for a small brush truck, and use money raised the past several years to buy the bigger one,” Guthrie said. “I want to thank the firemen, ladies auxiliary and the community for the donations they have given us. They are what keep us going.” Jermyn volunteers include, front row, from left, Stephanie Wyatt, Thomas Wyatt, Guthrie, Gillie Wells, Gene Van Baale and Randy Searcy; and back row, Timothy Guice and Dennis Lott. Not pictured are Assistant Chief Frank Gillam, Justin Howard and Kevin Lott. (Photo by Kim Gibby)
Get down, Get out safely
October 16, 2007
Jacksboro firefighter John Moffit (below) shows Jacksboro Elementary School students how to get low and get out in case of a fire. Firefighters were busy during Fire Prevention Week (Oct. 7-13), making trips to area schools to pass on this year’s theme “Practice Your Escape Plan.” At top, Bryson firefighters Marty Cathey, left, and John Walden help Bryson Principal Shari Coody “gear up” for duty. “Don’t be afraid when you see a firefighter,” Cathey told students at Bryson Elementary School. “He’s there to help you.”
A fiery crash Thursday claimed the life of an Archer County precinct worker, and sparked an 80-acre grass fire that kept emergency crews busy for hours.
The truck was northbound in a 1974 International pulling a 1982 Cherokee dump trailer, when it left the roadway, taking out a 150 feet of guard rail on the east side of the highway.
According to the reports from emergency crews on the scene, the rig jackknifed and came to rest upside down in the barditch.
Several passersby reported rushing to the vehicle, but leaking fuel immediately ignited, quickly engulfing the cab in flames.
EMS, Jack County Sheriff’s personnel and Jacksboro police officers arrived on scene as flames raced through the dry brush. Gusty winds pushed the fire northward. All Jack County fire crews were quickly dispatched to battle the blaze, with assistance from Jackson Construction equipment and labor and water trucks from Swan’s Oilfield Service.
Homes and structures along Lowrance Road were threatened for a time, but professional work by local fire crews kept the fire contained to about 80 acres of pasture with no loss of life or structures.
By 5 p.m., the Hamman Fire was officially “out.”
With little left to go on at the scene, the accident is still under investigation. Kulhanek’s body was sent to the Tarrant County Medical Examiner for autopsy.
As the wildfire north of Jacksboro raged, a second grass fire was reported behind several businesses in the 800 block of South Main Street.
Incident command rearranged priorities, and volunteers were sent to the second fire and quickly put out the flames which took only a few acres. Authorities have yet to determine a cause for this blaze.
Members of Jacksboro Volunteer and Jack County Rural Fire Departments joined up with counterparts from River Oaks Fire Department to "pass the boot" for a comrade in need. Gracious donors gave $3,000 during a three-hour period to assist River Oaks Lt. Gregory D. Stockton and his family following life-saving surgery.
In 2006, volunteers from River Oaks manned the Jacksboro station so while Jacksboro volunteer Victor Sanchez was recuperating from a heart-attack. River Oaks firefighters took on shifts which enabled local firefighters to assist the Sanchez family and visit their "brother" while he was in the hospital.