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Overnight Storms in Southwest Ohio Damage Businesses - U.S. News & World Report

Local News - Thu, 05/25/2017 - 06:50


Overnight Storms in Southwest Ohio Damage Businesses
U.S. News & World Report
DAYTON, Ohio (AP) — Authorities are investigating reports of damage from severe overnight storms in southwest Ohio, possibly including tornadoes. The Columbus Dispatch reports that the National Weather Service is sending a team Thursday to check on ...

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Categories: Local News

AAA offers aftermath tornado tips

WDTN News - Thu, 05/25/2017 - 00:04

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) –  Triple A is offering tips in the event of a tornado after one hit the Miami Valley Tuesday.

Cindy Antrican of AAA says, “Our hearts go out to all those who’ve suffered losses from the recent tornado.”

Here are some tips from AAA for you in the aftermath of a tornado:

  • Check for injuries. Do not attempt to move seriously injured persons unless they are in immediate danger of death or further injury.
  • Drive only if necessary and avoid flooded roads and washed-out bridges, roads and sidewalks.
  • Go outside your house and check for structural damage, loose power lines, gas leaks and other damage.

For more information from AAA, call 1 (800) 207-3618.

Categories: Local News

VIDEO: Viewers shared their weather experiences with us

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 23:54

Video from around the Miami Valley

Categories: Local News

Tornado warnings across the Miami Valley expired - WDTN

Local News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 23:10


WDTN

Tornado warnings across the Miami Valley expired
WDTN
DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – The tornado warnings that were issued in several counties across the Miami Valley have all expired. Storm Team 2 Chief Meteorologist Brian Davis says there is still a great deal of rain in the area but the most severe of the ...

Categories: Local News

NWS: 3 tornadoes confirmed in Wednesday storms

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 22:58

NEW CARLISLE, Ohio (WDTN) – The National Weather Service has confirmed three separate tornadoes touched down in Clark and Miami Counties Wednesday night.

One caused damage in Park Layne and moved into southeast Miami County. NWS says that was an EF1 tornado. A second tornado, this one also an EF1, caused damage approximately five miles southeast of Piqua.

NWS says the third tornado, an EF0, struck near Medway in Clark County.

The National Weather Service earlier said an EF1 tornado caused the damage in Park Layne Wednesday evening with maximum winds estimated to be at 100 miles per hour.

NWS also says damage along SR-201 in Bethel Township was caused by an EF0 strength tornado but it could be the same one that struck Park Layne. Experts are trying to confirm that Thursday.

The Clark County Sheriff’s Office says there is damage to several buildings on South Dayton Lakeview Road.

The roof has been torn off the Sunoco gas station and the Family Dollar. There is also damage to the McDonald’s.

Officials gave an afternoon update on the damage. You can watch that here.

Earlier Thursday, Officials spoke with reporters on what they knew at that time.

You can watch it in its entirety below:

The Clark County Sheriff told 2 NEWS that their first concern was safety and that fire officials said that someone inside Family Dollar was trapped but later rescued.

According to the Fire Chief, they are currently tracking two possible tornadoes.

One hit mobile home park off Upper Valley Pike, along with the one in Park Layne.

The Fire Chief goes on to say that they had zero injuries last night.

Bethel Township does not have tornado sirens and residents were alerted by an app called ‘hyper reach’ only if they signed up for it and social media.

According to Bethel Township, the sirens are cost prohibitive as the area is too large to cover.

Several roads in and around New Carlisle are closed by debris or by emergency crews.

Photos: Park Layne Storm Damage  3 tornadoes confirmed in Wednesday storms Park Layne Storm Damage (WDTN Photo)  3 tornadoes confirmed in Wednesday storms Park Layne Storm Damage (WDTN Photo)  3 tornadoes confirmed in Wednesday storms Park Layne Storm Damage (WDTN Photo)  3 tornadoes confirmed in Wednesday storms Park Layne Storm Damage (WDTN Photo)

Categories: Local News

Airlines have rules about taking photos, video on planes

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 22:45

DALLAS (AP) — Without the shocking video, it’s unlikely that the world would have learned or cared about the violent manhandling of a 69-year-old man on a plane last month.

The outrage on social media, the mea culpa by an airline CEO, the promise to treat customers better — none of it would have happened.

The passengers who shot those videos on a United Express plane in Chicago violated United’s policy on photography. By the letter of the airline’s law, they too could have been ordered off the plane.

Under United’s policy, customers can take pictures or videos with small cameras or cellphones “provided that the purpose is capturing personal events.” Filming or photographing other customers or airline employees without their consent is prohibited. American, Delta and Southwest have similar policies.

Passengers are accustomed to using their cellphones to take photos and videos that they can upload to Facebook, Twitter or Instagram. Airline rules on photography are sporadically enforced, but passengers should read them in the in-flight magazines because there can be consequences.

This month, a United ticket agent ordered a passenger’s reservation canceled as he filmed her while disputing a $300 baggage fee in the New Orleans airport. After Navang Oza posted his video online, United apologized, saying that the video “does not reflect the positive customer experience we strive to offer.”

In April, a JetBlue Airways crew called airport police to meet a man who they said continued to record a selfie video during a security-sensitive time in flight, while the cockpit door was opened. Michael Nissensohn insists that he wasn’t recording the procedure.

“I told them there is no rule against talking a selfie on a plane,” Nissensohn says. He says he was ordered off the plane and held up at LaGuardia airport in New York for more than an hour before being let go without charges. JetBlue declined to comment on the incident. A spokesman says the airline doesn’t publish its photography policy for security reasons.

With airline customer service in decline, videotaping is the only way that passengers can make sure they are treated fairly, says Gary Leff, a travel blogger who has criticized the airlines over the issue.

“The TSA allows more photography at the checkpoint than the airlines allow on board their planes,” he says.

The Transportation Security Administration says that photography at checkpoints is fine if people don’t take images of monitors or interfere with screeners. Travel bloggers say, however, that people have had run-ins with TSA officers, and you should expect to be questioned if you snap more than a casual photo of a companion.

Lawyers who specialize in First Amendment or travel law say airlines generally cannot limit photography or video recording in an airport because it is a public space. But airlines have more power on planes because as private parties they are not bound by the First Amendment.

“They are within their rights to establish these rules, they are within their rights to throw you off the aircraft if you continue filming,” says Joseph Larsen, a media-law attorney in Houston.

However, there is no law against taking photos or video on an airplane, and it is unlikely that anyone would face legal jeopardy for taking pictures of an altercation on a plane or their own peaceful dispute with an airline employee, Larsen says.

“If you see something going on that is a matter of legitimate public interest,” he says, go ahead and capture it even if you don’t have express permission to film another passenger. The man who was roughed up by airport officers on the United Express plane, David Dao, “has already got his settlement with United,” Larsen says. “He is probably pretty happy that was documented.”

After a video of a confrontation over a stroller between an American Airlines flight attendant and a mother with two young children, the airline grounded the employee. The person who shot the video violated American’s policy, which prohibits “unauthorized photography or video recording” of employees or other passengers.

Privately, airline officials say it is unlikely they would take action in such cases. American is reviewing its policy because of the difficulty of enforcing it.

Even if the law is on the side of the passenger with a camera, there are practical considerations.

“Unless it’s a legitimate safety issue like annoying other people, I don’t see a problem with taking photos on a plane. But that’s a call of the captain, and in the first instance the captain is right,” says Thomas Dickerson, a retired New York state judge and author of “Travel Law.”

Passengers can challenge the captain’s judgment in court, and might win, Dickerson says, “but the problem for consumers is, do you really want to get thrown off the plane?”

 

 

Categories: Local News

AAA projects highest travel rate for Memorial Day Weekend

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 21:43

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Memorial Day Weekend is just around the corner.

Triple A projects nearly 39 million Americans will travel more than 50 miles away from their homes over the weekend.

According to AAA, more than 1.5 million Ohioans plan to travel over the holiday with 1.4 million taking a road trip. In addition, AAA says Ohio travel on the road are up 2.2 percent and air travel will increase by 3.4 percent.

Categories: Local News

PHOTOS: Viewers are sending video, photos of weather

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 21:30

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Viewers from around the Miami Valley are sending in their photos and videos of what they are seeing as storms roll through the area.

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This one shows a funnel a viewer capture while headed south from Yellow Springs.

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This is one driving on Stroop Road throgh Kettering.

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This one comes from Jenni Ruehl in Xenia:

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This video comes to us from the Jeffersonville Outlet Mall in Fayette County.

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Categories: Local News

Mudslide in Gatlinburg clogs street

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 21:16

 

GATLINBURG, Tenn. (WATE) – Rain caused a mudslide in Gatlinburg.

The mudslide broke loose on Dudley Creek Road, filling the street with mud. Alan Lewis shared video of the road, which is located just off the Parkway in Gatlinburg. He said he believes the mudslides will continue now that trees and plants are gone from the November wildfires.

“Gatlinburg averaged up to an inch in less than an hour,” said WATE 6 Storm Team Chief Meteorologist Matt Hinkin. “That is in addition to the rain we received last week.”

 

 

Categories: Local News

How much does Signing Day really matter?

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 20:42

YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – More than 150,000 high school athletes sign a national letter of intent each year on Signing Day, guaranteeing college scholarships worth over $2.7 billion.

While those are big numbers, they represent less than 2 percent of high school athletes competing across the country.

Those that get the offer, football players especially, have a big decision to make. When they should make that decision is debated.

They call it a “hat dance.”

Youngstown State University head football Coach Bo Pelini has another word for it.

“It’s become a bit of a circus,” he said. “I think it’s sending the wrong message to young kids.”

The first Wednesday in February is the first opportunity that college coaches have to officially sign their recruiting classes, and for players, to honor their verbal commitment.

ScoutingOhio.com Founder Mark Porter said being committed doesn’t necessarily mean that you are committed, however.

“It means the college is committed to you, but it’s advantage player right now. It’s always been advantage player,” he said.

College coaches would like some of that leverage. Porter said somewhere between 30 and 50 percent of college football recruits change their mind, sometimes on Signing Day itself.

“Maybe it makes too much sense, I don’t know. Somebody offers you a scholarship, you commit. Why not sign?” Pelini said.

Porter said if Signing Day does end, it will be chaos.

Instead of getting rid of it, the Collegiate Commissioners Association, which runs the National Letter of Intent Program, announced earlier this month that it will add an additional signing period in late December. That 72-hour window, beginning on December 20, will allow players to end the recruiting process and sign early.

While that will ease some of the last-minute frenzy for college coaches, it can’t prevent the pressure they apply on recruits to verbally commit early.

“A lot of times, when you get that first offer, they put pressure on you,” Porter said. “They tell you, ‘Hey, we offered seven linebackers. The first to commit gets the $100,000 scholarship. The other six get nothing.’ So parents will jump on that right away and say, ‘Hey, we’re not fooling around with this process. We want the $100,000. We’re not in a position to lose this scholarship.’ So they commit.”

Nine high school football players from the Valley earned a Division 1 scholarship this year, most of which verbally committed before their senior season. However, they didn’t all go where they initially said they were going.

Categories: Local News

Main Street bridge will be under construction

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 20:14

A busy bridge in Dayton will undergo repairs.

Dayton City Commissioners approved upgrades for the Main Street bridge.

Officials have purchased land for the repairs.

The Dayton Fire Department expects construction won’t interfere with response times.

Director and Chief Jeffery Payne of the Dayton Fire Department says, “”Fortunately for the city of Dayton, we have other fire houses that can respond from different directions.  It will make that one firehouse protractive responsible a bit, but hopefully the other firehouses will be available.  They will be available to respond in a timely manner.”

There is no word yet when the construction project will start.

 

Categories: Local News

Massive need for welders and other skilled trades

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 19:43

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – There is a desperate need for workers in the skilled trades in the United States.

“Right now in the United States, there are three million manufacturing jobs open, unfilled, because of the skills gap, and in three to four years it’s going to be six million,” said Ed Monser, the president of Emerson which is one of the largest manufacturers in the Miami Valley.

The skills gap is a serious problem in the United States and can impact our economic growth.

“If we want to expand manufacturing we have to have more people who are technically competent,” said Monser. “Have the math skills, the problem-solving skills, the computer skills, and the technical skills to do the welding and electrical work. If we had more of those people we could grow faster.”

Monser said Emerson is working hard to expand the technical education capacity in the Miami Valley because it’s crucial to their long-term viability.

He was also very complimentary of the local workforce in the Miami Valley.

“In terms of the engineering strength I would say very good, and that comes from the University of Dayton and the long-term relationship there,” said Monser. “On the technicians side of the business, that’s a real challenge for us.”

Hobart Institute of Welding Technology in Troy is working to fill the skills gap, one welder at a time.

“A trade school means that they’re coming here, they’re getting a diploma, and for us they also have the opportunity to earn American Welding Society certifications,” said Melinda Jeffery, manager of marketing and career development at Hobart Institute of Welding Technology. “But a trade school is different from a university in that they’re not earning a degree, they’re not going to come here and learn English and math, or any of those kinds of things, they’re coming to learn welding. We’re a single-focus welding school.”

Jeffery said the American Welding Society is predicting a shortage of roughly 370,000 welders by 2026.

“There is growth in the field, but a lot of the shortage is coming from the retirements,” she said.

“I think the biggest misunderstanding is that it’s a dark, dungy-type trade, and it’s not as you can see here,” said Chip Prinz, director of corporate services at Hobart Institute of Welding Technology. Prinz is also a graduate of Hobart, and said a career in welding has provided him steady income and the ability to put food on the table for his family.

Prinz said he believes there’s a shortage of welders because for too long our society put more value and esteem in bachelor’s degrees, and the skilled trades suffered because of it.

Grant Johnson, 19, of Batesville, Indiana just graduated from the institute this spring.

“I’ve always had an interest in welding,” he said. “I’d like to go into the pipe industry. I heard there’s a lot of money in pipe and there are so many opportunities with it.”

Johnson said he is not concerned about finding a job.

“A large majority of our students come right out of high school,” said Jeffery.

The school offers two programs: the structural program which is 23 weeks, and a combination program that’s structural and pipe and lasts 38 weeks.

“I would say 90 percent of them take the combination program, structural and pipe, because it opens more doors,” she said.

“I believe we have about an 89 percent placement rate right now,” said Prinz. “We cannot get them out the door fast enough. Everybody needs them; all over the country and all over the world.”

“There’s a tremendous shortage in welding, but also in all the skilled trades,” said Ron Scott, VP and General Manager of the Hobart Institute of Welding Technology. “There’s such a need, and you know you’re going to be employed if you get into skilled trades.”

“You do not have to go to a four-year university, or a two-year community college,” said Jeffery. “You can come here, spend nine-and-a-half months or 38 weeks with us, do what you’re supposed to do, and get out making a really good living.”

She said starting average pay is about 16-18 dollars an hour, but very quickly she said they’re jumping to 22-24 dollars an hour because companies will bring them in at a lower rate to make sure they can do what they say they can do and then give them a bump.

According to the institute’s pamphlet, tuition for the welding programs range from $10,065 for the 23-week program, and $16,625 for the 38-week program.

Scott added that they’re an accredited school for student loans and Pell Grants, and stressed that they’re also veteran friendly and accept students under the G.I. Bill.

Jeffery said there are 18 scholarship opportunities available through the school and the Troy Foundation, and the American Welding Society.

Categories: Local News

Moraine Fire Dept to launch overdose response program

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 18:14

MORAINE, Ohio (WDTN) – With the number of overdoses in the Dayton area continuing to rise, the Moraine Fire Department has teamed up with a substance abuse treatment facility to try and put an end to the growing problem.

They’re working on an overdose response program to reach out to those struggling with addiction.

Moraine Fire Chief David Cooper suggested the rising number of overdoses is putting a strain on the city’s resources.

“We’re looking at three times the amount of calls that we had last year,” he said.

“Last year we gave Narcan – which is to treat an overdose victim – we gave about 115 doses and now were on pace for about 345 doses.”

Authorities have already warned: the number of overdoses across the Miami Valley continues to skyrocket.

Officials from the Moraine Fire Department and Project C.U.R.E. say they’re now going to visit victims and their families after a non-fatal overdose in a bid to get them help.

The program is called M.O.R.E. – or Moraine Overdose Response Effort.

Project C.U.R.E. Nurse Manager & Addiction Specialist Linda Bostick said it’s important to reach out to people struggling with addiction because oftentimes, they’re unsure or unable to get help.

“A lot of times because of the stigma of addiction, folks just won’t seek treatment,” Bostick said.

“Also there’s lots of barriers. Barriers that have to do with transportation, money, where they live, and who they live with. We work with all those barriers.”

She added: “The strength of the material coming in now is just phenomenal and there’s not many chances for folks to recover quickly enough.”

Authorities are hoping this new program will mean less repeat overdoses – and less 911 calls.

“We’re on our third consecutive year of record amount of calls for our EMS. There is a need out there,” Cooper said. “And if we can do something to help those people, it would also limit the amount of calls we have.”

The Moraine City Council is meeting Thursday to vote on the creation of the M.O.R.E. program.

Categories: Local News

Dayton PD addresses public safety concerns after Manchester attack

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 18:14

DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) – Monday’s deadly terrorist attack at a concert in Manchester continues to raise questions about public safety.

The Department of Homeland Security has said there’s no information to suggest any U.S. music venues are under threat.

Officials at the Dayton Police Department say their goal is to keep the public safe, and it’s much easier when everyone is involved.

The Manchester attack killed 22 people and injured 56 others.

It happened at an Ariana Grande concert.

Lieutenant James Mullins of the Dayton Police Department said, “It was a tragedy. It also puts into my mind, running through scenarios of how to prevent that. What steps can we take to make sure everyone stays safe.”

Authorities in England are investigating whether the suspected suicide bomber was part of a larger terrorist network.

ISIS has claimed responsibility but there’s no evidence linking them to it.

Mullins said there’s no reason for anyone here in Dayton to be fearful, but regardless of whether you’re at a concert, a shopping mall, or any venue with large groups of people – be aware.

“If your Spidey sense is tingling, there’s something wrong. If you feel awkward, if it doesn’t feel right, say something. It doesn’t bother us at all if you call us and say, ‘Hey, can you check this out? I don’t think it’s right’.”

Lt. Mullins said there’s a lot more people out there than police officers. And the more eyes, the better.

Categories: Local News

‘Stop the Bleed’ campaign offers training at Cedarville University

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 17:46

CEDARVILLE, Ohio (WDTN) – Premier Health officials launched the ‘Stop the Bleed’ campaign at Cedarville University Wednesday morning.

The program aims to prepare citizens when and if tragedy strikes. The initiative was put in place following the Sandy Hook Elementary School shooting in 2012 by the Obama administration.

Miami Valley Hospital trauma surgeon Dr. Greg Semon wants the public to be ready in case tragedy strikes. Earlier this week 22 people were killed and dozens were injured after a terror attack at a concert in England.

“These events and mass causalities are happening with even more frequency,” said Semon.

He says there is only so much first responders can do by the time they get to a scene and if training possible bystanders could be crucial to saving lives.

“Our whole goal is to educate the public on how they can prevent someone from bleeding to death,” he said.

For more on the campaign, click here.

 

Categories: Local News

Garrett not practicing with Browns because of ‘little nick’

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 17:20

BEREA, Ohio (AP) — The Cleveland Browns are not taking any chances with Myles Garrett, their No. 1 draft pick and $30 million investment.

Garrett is being kept off the practice field by the team this week because of an unspecified injury. The former Texas A&M star would not disclose his medical issue on Wednesday but said it’s nothing significant.

“They just wanted to be cautious about a little nick,” Garrett said. “But I’ll be back out there next week. I want to be out there. They’re holding me right now. But I’ll be out there full tilt next week.”

Garrett signed a four-year, $30 million contract last week and the Browns aren’t taking any chances with their prized first selection. Coach Hue Jackson indicated Garrett might be dealing with something following last week’s rookie minicamp, but he didn’t reveal Garrett’s problem.

“He’ll be fine,” Jackson said. “Obviously I’m just going to very cautious with guys. Anytime guys have a little soreness, I want to make sure we’re totally healthy. I think when we had the rookie minicamp there was a little soreness. I just wanted to make sure that was out before we stuck him out there again.”

Another first-round pick, defensive back Jabrill Peppers, also sat out, as did veteran wide receiver Kenny Britt. The team gave no specifics about their injuries.

The Browns got a scare during practice when wide receiver Corey Coleman was slow getting up after catching a deep pass from Brock Osweiler. Coleman stayed on the ground for several minutes before being helped up by a trainer. Jackson came over to check on the second-year player before he walked into the team’s facility along with a member of the medical staff.

Coleman did not limp and may have just been shaken up after falling on the ball.

Jackson didn’t seem overly concerned.

“He’s going to be fine,” Jackson said. “He came down I think on the ball a little bit, too, but I think he’ll be OK.”

The Browns are counting on Coleman to have a big season after he missed six games as a rookie with a broken hand. The No. 15 overall pick in 2016, he finished with 33 catches for 413 yards and three touchdowns.

Categories: Local News

Ohio officer’s attorneys seek dismissal of case

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 17:09

CINCINNATI (AP) — Attorneys for a white police officer who fatally shot an unarmed black motorist Wednesday asked an Ohio judge to dismiss the charges on the eve of his murder retrial, claiming the county prosecutor violated a gag order.

Ray Tensing’s defense filed the motion less than two hours after WCPO-TV in Cincinnati posted a story in which Hamilton County Prosecutor Joe Deters is quoted about the case. Among other things, he said Judge Leslie Ghiz could add lesser charges to the original charges of murder and voluntary manslaughter for the new jury to consider.

The previous jury couldn’t reach a verdict in November. Deters also said a strong majority of those jurors voted to convict Tensing of voluntary manslaughter.

“This violation of the gag order is a blatant attempt to influence and bias prospective jurors on the eve of the reporting date,” Tensing’s attorneys wrote.

Prospective retrial jurors are scheduled to report to the courthouse Thursday morning.

The defense motion said the only way to address the alleged “prejudicial conduct” is to dismiss the charges. A message for comment was left Wednesday with the prosecutor’s office.

The judge did not immediately respond to the request for the charges to be dismissed.

“I don’t think it warrants a dismissal, and I don’t think Judge Ghiz will dismiss it,” said attorney Mike Allen, a former county prosecutor. “An elected prosecutor needs to speak out on issues; I understand that because I was there. But the gag order should be obeyed.”

He said he was “at a loss” on why Deters discussed the case in the interview.

Allen has been saying since before the first trial that prosecutors should have given jurors the option of lesser charges such as reckless or negligent homicide.

Tensing, 27, a former University of Cincinnati officer, testified he feared for his life when Samuel DuBose, 43, tried to drive away during a July 2015 traffic stop.

Deters revamped the prosecution team for the retrial, including taking himself off the case.

Ghiz earlier scheduled a Friday hearing on pending motions concerning potential evidence in the case.

It’s among U.S. cases that have increased attention to how police respond to blacks.

Categories: Local News

Report says bill leaves 51m uninsured in 2026

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 17:05

WASHINGTON (AP) — The Congressional Budget Office says an estimated 51 million people under age 65 would be uninsured in 2026 under the latest version of the House Republican health care bill.

That compares with 28 million under age 65 who would lack insurance that year under the current health law signed by President Barack Obama.

And it’s only a tiny improvement from the original version of the House bill, which would have resulted in an estimated 52 million people under 65 uninsured by 2026, according to the nonpartisan budget office.

The information is in the so-called “score” released Wednesday of the legislation the House passed earlier this month. It’s been eagerly awaited but shows little change on insurance coverage compared with the earlier version of the health bill, which collapsed.

Categories: Local News

Raids, arrests as on-edge UK seeks ‘network’ of attackers

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 17:00

MANCHESTER, England (AP) — Security forces rounded up more suspects Wednesday in the deadly Manchester concert blast and soldiers fanned out across the country to national landmarks as an on-edge Britain tried to thwart the possibility of additional attacks.

Officials scoured the background of the British-born ethnic Libyan identified as the bomber, saying he was likely part of a wider terrorist network. Additional arrests were made both in Britain and in Libya in the bombing that killed 22 people and wounded scores more.

“I think it’s very clear this is a network we are investigating,” said Chief Constable Ian Hopkins of the Manchester Police, as authorities raided properties thought to be connected to Salman Abedi, the 22-year-old suspected bomber who grew up in Manchester and died in the attack.

British Home Secretary Amber Rudd said Abedi “likely” did not act alone in the strike at the close of an Ariana Grande concert Monday night and that he had been known to security forces “up to a point.” Meanwhile, officials probed possible travel by the alleged bomber, looking for clues to new threats.

Government officials said nearly 1,000 soldiers were deployed to Buckingham Palace, Parliament and other high-profile sites across the country. Britain’s terror threat level was raised to “critical” — the highest level — on Tuesday over concern another attack could be imminent.

French Interior Minister Gerard Collomb said Abedi was believed to have traveled to Syria and had “proven” links to the Islamic State group, which claimed responsibility for the attack. British officials, however, have not commented on whether Abedi had links to IS or other extremist groups.

British authorities were probing whether Abedi had ties to other cells across Europe and North Africa, according to two officials familiar with the case who spoke on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to speak about the ongoing investigation.

They said one thread of the inquiry involved pursuing whether Abedi could have been part of a larger terror cell that included Mohamed Abrini, otherwise known as “the man in the hat,” with connections to the Brussels and Paris attacks. Abrini visited Manchester in 2015.

Five additional arrests were made in Britain on Wednesday as the sprawling investigation extended to Libya, where Abedi’s father and a younger brother were detained in Tripoli. The father, Ramadan Abedi, denied his son had links to militants in an interview with The Associated Press earlier Wednesday, saying, “We don’t believe in killing innocents.”

The elder Abedi was allegedly a member of the al-Qaida-backed Libyan Islamic Fighting group in the 1990s, according to a former Libyan security official, Abdel-Basit Haroun. The Libyan anti-terror force that arrested the men said the brother, 18-year-old Hashim Abedi, confessed he and his brother were linked to the Islamic State group and that he was aware of the arena bombing plan.

A second brother, Ismail Abedi, 23, was taken into custody in Manchester a day earlier.

The suspected bomber grew up in Manchester’s southern suburbs and once attended Salford University there. Neighbors recalled him as tall, thin and quiet, and said he often wore traditional Islamic dress. Among investigators’ areas of interest is how often Abedi traveled to Libya, which has seen an eruption of armed Islamist groups since dictator Moammar Gadhafi was overthrown and killed in 2011.

Before his arrest, Abedi’s father said he had last spoken to his son five days ago and he sounded “normal.” He said his son was getting ready to visit Saudi Arabia for a short Umrah pilgrimage then planned to head to Libya to spend the Islamic holy month of Ramadan with his family. He said his son last visited Libya about six weeks ago and had never gone to Syria. He denied ties to any militant groups or suggestions of extremism.

“We aren’t the ones who blow up ourselves among innocents,” he said. “We go to mosques. We recite Quran, but not that.”

At Manchester’s Didsbury Mosque, where the Abedi family worshipped, the bombing was condemned and reports that the suspected bomber had worked there were denied. Azhar Mahmoud, who prays at the mosque in southern Manchester, said it was “horrible” that Abedi was associated with it.

“Wherever he got that, he didn’t get it from this mosque,” he said, adding that the imam regularly preached against radicalization.

British Prime Minister Theresa May chaired a meeting Wednesday of her emergency security cabinet group to talk about intelligence reports on Abedi and concerns that he might have had outside support. Police raided homes believed to be connected with the investigation.

At one apartment building in Manchester, heavily armed police swarmed in and a controlled explosion was heard. At another property, a house a 10-minute walk from where Abedi lived, neighbors said they were awakened by a loud noise and saw a man hauled away in handcuffs.

“There was a policeman, armed policeman, shouting,” neighbor Omar Alfa Khuri said. “And I realized there is something wrong here.”

Across London, troops fanned out and authorities reconsidered security plans. The changing of the guard ceremony at Buckingham Palace was canceled so police officers could be re-deployed. The Palace of Westminster, which houses Parliament, was shuttered to those without passes, and tours and events were canceled until further notice. Armed police patrolled outside St. Paul’s Cathedral in London, another popular tourist spot.

For a second night, a throng of people filled a Manchester square for a vigil for the victims. Muslim, Christian and Jewish leaders echoed a message that extremists wouldn’t drive a wedge among the city’s religious groups. People lifted their hands in the air during a moment of silence.

“There are no divisions here tonight,” Irfan Chishti, the imam of Manchester’s biggest mosque, told the crowd.

Officials said all of the bombing victims had been identified, but names were being withheld until autopsies were completed. Still, their stories began to emerge: Michelle Kiss, a mother of three whose “family was her life;” Nell Jones, an “always smiling” teenager; Martyn Hett, who packed life “to the brim with his passions;” Jane Tweddle, a “bubbly, kind, welcoming” receptionist. The youngest known of those killed was just 8. Besides the dead, the number of people who sought medical help after the attack was raised to 119. Officials said 64 people remained hospitalized, including 20 who were critically injured.

Categories: Local News

Beavercreek Fire Department holds open house

WDTN News - Wed, 05/24/2017 - 16:57

BEAVERCREEK – The Beavercreek Fire Department is celebrating EMS week.

The department held an open house Tuesday evening at fire station 63 located on Kemp Road.

Residents could get tours of the station, check out equipment and learn how first responders work to keep the community safe.

“It makes us realize our job really is important and we take pride in that position,” said Capt. Christine Hawker from the Beavercreek Township Fire Department.

The department also honored past firefighters at a breakfast over the weekend.

Another open house is schedule for Thursday, May 25 at the station house on Indian Ripple Road.

Categories: Local News