Thursday, November 23, 2017
News Roundup

4 firefighters killed in Houston motel fire

RECOMMENDED READING


HOUSTON — Four firefighters searching for people they thought might be trapped in a blazing Houston motel and restaurant Friday were killed when part of the structure collapsed and ensnared them, authorities said.

At least five other firefighters were hospitalized in the blaze that became the deadliest in the 118-year history of the Houston Fire Department.

Flames were shooting from the roof of the Southwest Inn, along one of Houston's most heavily traveled freeways, U.S. Highway 59, and black smoke was blanketing the area after the fire broke out around noon. About 150 firefighters responded and were able to get it under control within about two hours.

Three firefighters were killed at the scene, while the fourth died at a hospital, according to the mayor's office and a medical examiner. Five other people were injured and were hospitalized for treatment of chest pains or leg injuries.

"We took the highest amount of risk possible because we thought we had civilians in the structure," fire Chief Terry Garrison said. "The structure collapsed and our members who were trying to save lives were lost."

Garrison said everyone else has since been accounted for. A cause of the blaze hasn't yet been determined.

The loss of life is the single worst in the history of the department, which had counted 64 firefighters lost since the city began paying firefighters in 1895. Twice previously, two firefighters were killed in a single fire, in 1953 and most recently in 2000. Three firefighters died in 1929 when a train slammed broadside into their engine.

Mayor Annise Parker said, "I ask for every Houstonian to offer their prayers to the families of these fallen firefighters, and also to think about what the job of firefighter is and the dangers they face every day."

The Fire Department identified the dead firefighters as Capt. Matthew Renaud, 35, an 11-year veteran; engineer operator Robert Bebee, 41, who joined the department almost 12 years ago; firefighter Robert Garner, 29, who joined 12½ years ago; and probationary firefighter Anne Sullivan, 24, who graduated from the training academy in April.

Comments
Bucs players, coaches say they cherish getting game balls for special feats

Bucs players, coaches say they cherish getting game balls for special feats

TAMPA — In the jubilant moments after a Bucs win, Dirk Koetter will sometimes ask for a game-used ball from his equipment staff, hold it high in the locker room and present it to the player who was most crucial to the victory.NFL players can ask for ...
Updated: 1 hour ago
Jon Mott wins record fifth Times Turkey Trot 10K

Jon Mott wins record fifth Times Turkey Trot 10K

By BOB PUTNAMCLEARWATER — The Tampa Bay Times Turkey Trot has long been a fixture on Jon Mott’s sporting calendar. Not even a 103-degree fever Tuesday could keep him away from the event, in its 39th year. Mott, a record four-time 10k champion, added ...
Updated: 1 hour ago

 
Updated: 1 hour ago

Updated: 1 hour ago
Woman killed in Largo motorcycle crash could ‘out-game any dude’

Woman killed in Largo motorcycle crash could ‘out-game any dude’

LARGO — Sydney Pender, 27, loved riding her motorcycle, even though she knew the dangers. Three years ago, her friend said, a delivery truck hit her. But she kept riding. On Thanksgiving, it was a crash with a taxi cab that killed her.Pender, a St. P...
Updated: 1 hour ago

Valrico intersection closed after car-sized hole opens in road

VALRICO — A hole the size of a vehicle opened up beneath the intersection of Nature’s Way Boulevard and Elm Grove Lane, Hillsborough officials said.The cause of the depression is unclear, but the intersection was blocked off to traffic.Hillsborough C...
Updated: 2 hours ago
Days after a high fever, Jon Mott wins his fifth Times Turkey Trot 10K

Days after a high fever, Jon Mott wins his fifth Times Turkey Trot 10K

CLEARWATER — On Tuesday, Jon Mott had a 103-degree fever. That was not enough to keep him from maintaining his dominance Thursday at the 39th Tampa Bay Times Turkey Trot.The former Northeast standout added to his record with his fifth title in the ev...
Updated: 3 hours ago

Update: Mother, toddler hit by car in critical condition at TGH

TAMPA — A mother and one of her two small children who were hit by a car while trying to cross Dale Mabry Highway on Wednesday were still in the hospital on Thanksgiving, according to Tampa General Hospital.Cassandra Marie Spicola, 29, and 18-month-o...
Updated: 8 hours ago

Pasco County put under immediate tornado warning

The National Weather Service has put out a tornado warning for Pasco County. Thunderstorms capable of producing a tornado and strong winds are expected over Jasmine Estates, New Port Richey and Hudson until 1:15 p.m., according to the NWS warning. Ba...
Updated: 10 hours ago
Thanksgiving forecast: Rain today, but sunny skies this weekend

Thanksgiving forecast: Rain today, but sunny skies this weekend

It’s going to be a wet Thanksgiving across Tampa Bay, but sunny skies are coming during the long weekend, according to WTSP 10Weather meteorologist Ric Kearbey. 10News WTSPThe latest Tampa Bay-area radar 10...
Published: 11/23/17