‘Know what you don’t know’
: New book aims to stop backcountry emergencies before they start

During his 30 years living and teaching in Western North Carolina, Maurice Phipps has heard countless tales of tragedy and near misses set in the Southern Appalachian backcountry — people falling off waterfalls , shivering in the cold  while awaiting rescue after a wrong turn on the trail, or logging hair-raising experiences with wildlife .

Booming Times, Busted Budgets: Growing visitation strains resources in and around the GSMNP

Christine Cole Proctor was home alone with her big sister at the family cabin on Forney Creek when she heard an unfamiliar rumble climbing the isolated mountain road. It was a car — the first they’d ever seen scale the rugged route. 

Swain bristles at perceived 
encroachment by Rep. Clampitt

A feud brewing between Rep. Mike Clampitt (R-Swain) and the governments of Swain County and Bryson City reached a new level over the last couple of weeks as officials balked at Clampitt’s plea for the two entities to consolidate their emergency services.

Nearly one year on, Haywood strengthens flood response capabilities

Eleven months to the day after Haywood County awoke to unprecedented flood damage along the Pigeon River resulting from torrential rains the day before, Emergency Services Officer Zack Koonce and Director Travis Donaldson told commissioners they’d secured grant funding to bolster reporting and warning systems.

Clampitt calls for unification of Bryson City, Swain County emergency services

As towns and counties across Western North Carolina grow and attract more visitors, the services provided by those places must grow, as well. 

Jackson to fund 8 positions for Sylva Fire Department

With increasing call volume, fewer volunteers and an expected continuation of growth in town, Sylva’s all-volunteer fire department is in need of paid personnel.

Tax increase likely for Jackson residents

Jackson County residents can expect to see a two-cent tax increase in the coming fiscal year, rising from $0.36 to $0.38, if commissioners accept the proposed FY 2022-23 budget. Much of the revenue from that tax increase will go toward the construction of a new swimming pool .  

Fast moving brushfire in Maggie contained thanks to firefighting efforts and rain

A fire that began Monday afternoon on Sheepback Mountain in Maggie Valley and initially spread quickly was 100% contained as of 1:30 p.m. Tuesday, April 5. 

Crews quell fires as new weather system arrives

The wildfires that ripped through the mountains last week are now mostly under control, but as of Tuesday afternoon, April 5, fire danger remained high in Western North Carolina and Eastern Tennessee — even as the first drops of rain from a large system headed north began to blanket the region.

Sylva Fire requests funding for more paid staff

Sylva Fire Department is requesting funding from Jackson County for the salary of additional paid personnel in the split paid, volunteer fire department. At a March 10 commissioners meeting, Sylva fire chief Mike Beck made his case.

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