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Public Safety

  • Surprise snowstorm leads to 67 wrecks

    By SHAINA STOCKTON, Staff

    Local police officers were busy on the roads during the surprise snow storm that shocked the Twin Counties last Thursday afternoon.
    No one saw it coming, not even meteorologists, and no one was prepared to drive on the slick, slushy roads on April 4.
    According to every forecast, the worst everyone was expecting was a little rain, maybe some sleet.

  • Lawsuit filed in 2011 wreck on 77

     

    HILLSVILLE — A lawsuit filed in Carroll Circuit Court seeks $3.5 million in damages from the Virginia Department of Transportation, related to a March 2011 wreck blamed on high winds on Interstate 77.

  • Despite warnings, drivers didn't slow down in fog

    HILLSVILLE — Ramesh Sangheni said he and his family are lucky.
    The local hotel owner was driving south on Interstate 77 on Easter Sunday with his family when they were involved in a massive chain-reaction pileup of 97 vehicles that closed the highway for hours.
    His car was damaged but no one was hurt.
    “I thought I was going to die,” he said on Monday.

  • First responders reflect on deadly I-77 crash

    HILLSVILLE — More than 100 police, fire, medics, tow truck operators and road crews responded to the scene of the mass collision that killed three and injured around 30 more people unfortunate enough to be on fog-bound Interstate 77 on Easter Sunday afternoon.
    The incident hadn’t claimed any more lives as of press time on Wednesday, according to emergency officials.

  • Man charged with larceny, forgery in Galax

    Police say suspect was trying to break into cars and pass forged checks.

  • VDOT planning I-77 safety improvements

    SALEM — Safety on Interstate 77 at Fancy Gap has been an ongoing issue for the Virginia Department of Transportation.
    Highway officials in 2012 revealed proposed safety improvements to the dangerous stretch of road in Carroll County. The I-77 safety project includes installing variable speed limit signs, more electronic message boards,  "pan-tilt-zoom" cameras and more road weather information systems.

  • Saturday I-77 crash also resulted in fatality

    A single-vehicle accident on Interstate 77 on Saturday also lead to a fatality, according to Virginia State Police Trooper Alan Vaughan.
    This crash occurred at about 3:15 p.m. at the 3 milemarker in the northbound lanes, when driver Jeffrey D. Stewart, 66, of Worthington, Ohio, apparently fell asleep at the wheel.
    The 2010 Chevy Malibu went off the road to the right and struck a rock embankment and overturned several times, the trooper said. This ejected a backseat passenger.

  • Students unharmed in bus incident

    No students were injured after a school bus slipped off the edge of the road in the Laurel section of Carroll Tuesday morning.
    In the brief time before another bus arrived, Hillsville Fire Department members put the kids in the fire trucks to be out of the morning chill.

  • Shelter closed to prevent spread of parvovirus

    The Galax-Carroll-Grayson Animal Shelter will be closed through April 8 due to a suspected case of parvovirus at the shelter, according to a news release from City Manager Keith Barker.


    Some puppies began showing symptoms of parvovirus after spending a couple of days at the shelter, Barker told the Gazette. The contagious disease is fatal to dogs.

    
They were taken to a local veterinarian, where they tested negative for parvo. However, they still had all of the symptoms.
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  • Trial by Fire

    By SHAINA STOCKTON, Staff
    The room was dark and full of smoke, so seeing was next to impossible.
    The injured firefighter lay helpless underneath the rubble that had fallen from the ceiling during a search of the room.
    All the firefighter could do was scream to the rest of the crew for help. They arrived quickly, and pushed away the fallen debris.
    “Are you alright?” asked one of the firefighter's brothers as the rest gathered around, preparing to carry them out if necessary.