New HCC complex to offer a gamut of response training

A $4 million public safety facility will be constructed at Haywood Community College over the next two years, providing police, fire and rescue workers of all stripes a state-of-the-art training center for simulations, drills and classes.

The HCC Board of Trustees formally voted on Sept. 6 to proceed with the project after nearly two years of planning.

Fire hits downtown Sylva

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The downtown Sylva businesses housed in the Main Street buildings impacted by a weekend fire stand with blackened bricks and blistered innards. It’s not a pretty sight. 

“It doesn’t look salvageable to me,” Sylva Mayor Maurice Moody told a full house crowd during an emergency meeting following the fire. 

Partial reopening at Haywood hospital

fr mobile erHaywood Regional Medical Center is on its way to recovery after a small fire in its power room earlier this month knocked out the electrical system, closing the hospital and causing its 62 patients to be shuttled to hospitals in neighboring counties.

Telecomm outage rattles public, but emergency services keep humming

A telecommunications outage hit the Waynesville area last Thursday evening, knocking out cell phones, TV, Internet and even landlines for thousands of residents.

“One by one, across the county people are realizing on their own that they have no cellular services or voice or data communication tool,” said Greg Shuping, the Haywood County Emergency Services Director.

Emergency management plan helps when disaster hits

op frBy Mark Swanger • Guest Columnist

Regardless of their magnitude, all disasters — natural or man-made — are local events and require an immediate, coordinated response from local government to protect public health, safety and welfare.

This function is called Emergency Management, and, in the aftermath of national tragedies such as 9/11 and Hurricane Katrina, not to mention incidents like our own two 500-year floods in September 2004, many local governments have adopted ordinances to allow for a better, quicker response to disasters. These Emergency Management ordinances, which are heavily regulated through state and federal laws, give local governments the authority to quickly mobilize the resources needed to protect our citizens when the unexpected occurs.

Jackson County to build new emergency ops hub

Jackson County plans to build a $1.6 million state-of-the-art 911 call center and emergency headquarters along U.S. 441 south of Dillsboro.

Experts convene at rockslide response conference

When a rockslide shut down Interstate 40 through the Pigeon River Gorge in Haywood County three years ago, the N.C. Department of Transportation scrambled to clean up the massive slab that sheered off the mountain and then shore up the towering rock face against future slides.

Firefighter safety versus right to build steep driveways

The Jackson County Planning Board debated where to draw the line between safety and individual rights last month in its ongoing rewrite of steep slope rules.

Specifically, should driveways to homes on steep slopes have to meet safety standards?

HCC moves forward with law enforcement, emergency responder training site

The Haywood Community College Board of Trustees has given preliminary approval for the construction of a training facility for law enforcement and emergency service workers.

Emergency action plans layout game plan well before disaster strikes

fr disasterdrillWhat if a tornado ripped through Western North Carolina? What if a tanker hauling dangerous chemicals overturned on Interstate 40? What if a blizzard caused power outages and trapped people in their homes?

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