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October 23, 2009 - 8:43am
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, Pembroke Central School District.

Officials of the Pembroke Central School district announced on the district Web site this morning that a student died late Thursday afternoon (pdf).

The notification informs parents that tests for influenza came back negative and that the Genesee County Health Department determined it was safe for children to attend school today.

Counselors are available for students who need to talk about their friend's passing.

No further details were given.

Superintendent Gary Mix is currently meeting with district staff and not immediately available for comment.

UPDATE 10:36 a.m.: Superintendent Gary Mix just issued a written statement to the media, but included no new information apart from the prior statement.  It says, "It is out of respect for the family of our student that we cannot release any additional information at this time."

UPDATE 10:59 a.m.: Randy Garney, interim health director for Genesee County, said he can't legally release any information. A source tells me the death occurred in Erie County.  A woman I spoke to at the Erie Couny Health Department said that department isn't likely to release any information, and that nobody would even be able to return my call until late this afternoon.

UPDATE 2:50 p.m.: A spokesman for the Erie County Health Department just called. He referred me back to Gensee County, saying that even though the death occurred in Erie County, "it's Genesee County public health case."

UPDATE 3:10 p.m.: Gary Mix just released this statement: "As an update, in our most recent consultation with the Genesee County Health Department and the New York State Department of Health, the District has been informed that the cause of death for the Pembroke Central School student is still to be determined."

UPDATE 3:30 p.m.: I e-mailed Randy Garney asking for more information.  Here is his response: "This is a pending investigation.  Due to HIPPA Act, by Federal Law, I can not share any patient medical information.  However I will tell you that the NYSDOH or the GCHD has never ruled out influenza as a cause. "

Full announcement after the jump:

October 19, 2009 - 9:04am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, Oakfield, pembroke, Darien.

Anthonly J. Spearance, 24, of 107 Washington Ave., Batavia, is charged with disorderly conduct and reckless endangerment. Spearance allegedly punched his pregnant girlfriend in the stomach. He was jailed on $1,500 bail.

James T. Moore, 50, of 115 Summit St., Batavia, and Patricia L. Brinkman, 48, of the same address, are both charged with assault in the third degree. Both were allegedly involved in a physical altercation during a domestic dispute. Both were jailed on $500 bail each.

Christopher C. Say, 18, of 514 E. Main St., Batavia, is charged with menacing. Say allegedly brandished a large knife and threatened another person with it during a fight. He was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Jeremy A. Weatherbee, 40, of 65 Roosevelt Ave., Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt. Weatherbee allegedly sent text messages to a person he was barred by court order from contacting.

Amanda L. Spring, 26, of 34 Walnut St., Batavia, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, refusal to take breath test and unsafe turn without signal. Spring was stopped on Walnut Street at 3:03 a.m. on Sunday.

Kara M. Marquez-Davidson, 24, of Tonawanda, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Marquez-Davidson was stopped by State Police on Route 77 in Darien at 9:42 p.m. on Friday.

Mark S. Wells, 44, of Oakfield, is charged with DWI and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Wells was stopped by State Police on Route 5 in Pembroke at 2 a.m. on Thursday.

A 15-year-old from Oakfield has been arrested by State Police and charged with sexual abuse of a person under 14 and endangering the welfare of a child. The alleged incident was reported Oct. 10. The teen was taken into custody at 6:04 p.m. Friday. No further details were released.

October 14, 2009 - 8:53am
posted by Chad Flint in sports, elba, alexander, pembroke, Girl's Soccer.

Alexander picked up a 4-1 win in Elba last Friday to move to 10-1-1 on the season and then dropped a 2-1 decision to Pembroke at home Tuesday to drop to 10-2-1 on the season.

In the game against Elba Alexander got goals from Amber Finan, Julia Pettys, Tessa Bigelow, and Kylie Bank to pace the offense while the defense nearly pitched a shutout as Elba's only goal was scored late in the game on a well placed shot off an indirect kick.

Alexander fell behind early 1-0 and was down 2-0 in the 1st half to Pembroke before attempting to rally in the 2nd half but falling short.  Autumn Atkinson blasted a direct kick into the net 10 minutes into the 2nd half to bring Alexander back to within 1 at 2-1 but Alexander couldn't find the net again and would fall by that score.  Alexander's defense got off to a very slow start but were much more energized in the 2nd half and welcomed Junior Taylor Antinore back to the lineup as she returned from a month out with Mono.  Alexander had chances in the 2nd half, possibly the best one was when Senior Anna Dominick hit the crossbar late (she also found the bar in the 1st half) but it stayed out of the net.  Pembroke played a great game of defense and got some great goalkeeping to preserve the lead.

Alexander's next game is home Thursday against Attica.

October 9, 2009 - 10:11am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, pembroke, Darien.

Matthew Kyle Johnson, 21, of 2509 E. Main Road, Pembroke, is charged with petit larceny. Johnson is accused of stealing a mobile phone while employed at Darien Lake Theme Park.

Kenneth R. MacGreagor, 23, of Cheektowaga, is charged with false personation and having no motor vehicle license. MacGreagor was stopped at 1:30 p.m. Thursday by State Police on Stephen Hawley Drive in the Town of Batavia.

October 8, 2009 - 9:15am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, pembroke.

Timothy K. Bump, 39, of 3207 Pratt Road, Lot #23, Batavia, is charged with a felony count of DWI, aggravated DWI with a BAC of .08 or greater, and failure to reduce speed for hazard. Bump was allegedly driving on Slusser Road in Pembroke yesterday at 5:10 p.m. when he lost control of his vehicle and hit a guard rail. No injuries were reported in the accident and no other vehicles were apparently involved. Deputy Patrick Reeves investigated the incident.

Michael Baldwin, 41, of 15 Maple St., Batavia, is charged with assault. Baldwin was arrested for an alleged incident Monday at 5:50 a.m. in which Baldwin is accused of throwing items from a shelf and recklessly causing injury to another person. That person was initially treated at UMMC and then transferred to Strong Memorial Hospital. Baldwin was jailed without bail. Officer E.E. Bolles investigated the alleged incident.

Lindsey Goins, 53, of 131 State St., Batavia, is charged with menacing, endangering the welfare of a child and disorderly conduct. Goins is accused of causing a disturbance on State Street at 3:40 p.m. on Tuesda. Goins allegedly shouted obscene language in the presence of children and threatened others with a pocketknife. Goins was jailed without bail. The alleged incident was investigated by Officer Matthew Baldwin.

Chad D. Crawford, 31, of 3 Cedar St., Batavia, is charged with menacing and harassment. Crawford allegedly had physical contact with another person and threatened that person with a knife. Crawford was jailed on $1,500 bail. The alleged incident was investigated by Officer K.M. DeFelice.

Jenna Marie Hattaway, 22, 113 Jackson St., Apt. 2, Batavia, is charged with criminal contempt and harassment. Hattaway is accused of throwing a radio antenna at another person. The court had previously issued an order of protection instructing Hattaway to have no offensive conduct toward that person. Hattaway was jailed on $500 bail. Deputy James Diehl investigated the incident.

October 7, 2009 - 12:20pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke.

Wilkinson and Upton roads at the CRX train crossings are closed because of repairs to the track until Friday.  

Genesee County Dispatch notified Pembroke Fire of the closure.

October 5, 2009 - 10:00am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Attica, crime, elba, alexander, pembroke, corfu.

mug-james-gibbs.jpgJames S. Gibbs, 39, of Batavia, is charged with grand larceny, insurance fraud and offering false instruments for filing and a violation of the worker's compensation law. Gibbs is accused of collecting full disability related to an on-duty injury while drawing income from plowing driveways and sealing parking lots in Batavia. Gibbs was jailed on $10,000 bail.

Kathleen M. McBride, 44, of 115 State St., lower, is charged with assault and criminal possession of a weapon. McBride is accused of cutting her husband's face during a domestic dispute. Her husband was not seriously injured in the alleged attack. After he was cut, her husband allegedly pushed her onto the bed and held her there, not allowing her to get up. McBride was jailed on $3,000 bail.

Jean Marie Lorenz, 49, of 7907 Allegheny Road, Corfu, is charged with two counts of assault. Lorenze allegedly attacked and cut two people with a knife Saturday night. Lorenz was reportedly drunk at the time. She was jailed on $1,000 bail.

Karen Ann Garcia, 45, of 13535 Miller Road, Albion, is charged with endangering the welfare of a child. Gardia allegedly allowed her daughter to shoplift at Kmart. Garcia also reportedly lied about her daughter's name and age.

Jamie Luis Santiago, of 5057 Hundredmark Road, Elba, is charged with assault. Santiago was taken into custody for an alleged incident July 12. Santiago allegedly punched his wife in the face causing injury on that date.

Sath P. Dhanda, 29, of 219 Washington Ave., Batavia, is charged with disorderly conduct and assault. Dhanda allegedly instigated a fight. At the time of his arrest, Dhanda allegedly made verbal threats to a police officer. Dhanda was arrested at 7:48 p.m. on Friday.

Dylan A.J. Dembrow, 18, of 14 Pearl St., Akron, is charged with unlawful dealing with a child. Dembrow is accused of hosting an underage drinking party at a location on Akron Road in Pembroke on Saturday night.

James M. Wisniewski, 19, of Attica, was charged by State Police with harassment. The charge stems from a Sept. 19 incident in the Village of Alexander. No further retails are available at this time.

Thomas J. Preedom, 21, of Wyoming, is charged by State Police with rape in the second degree and acting in a manor to injure a child. According to the State Police blotter entry, Preedom is accused of raping an underage girl. The alleged incident took place in the City of Batavia on Sept. 25. He was subsequently charged with bail jumping, criminal mischief, escape and harassment. Cash bail was set at $50,000.

Ronald G. Albertson, 51, of Albion, is charged with DWI. Albertson was stopped by State Police in Elba on at 10:03 p.m. Saturday.

October 1, 2009 - 3:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, pembroke, Alabama.

An abandoned house has reportedly caught on fire at 8038 N. Pembroke Road.

Earlier today there was a report of a controlled burn. According to Dispatch, the owner of the house, who was burning brush earlier, called to say the fire had spread to the house.

East Pembroke and Alabama fire departments are being dispatched.

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September 28, 2009 - 2:43pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in accident, thruway, pembroke.

A car reportedly spun out and was struck by a semi-truck on the eastbound Thruway near mile marker 402.3.

Mercy EMS is responding. Indian Falls fire and Pembroke have been dispatched.

The driver is reportedly conscious and talking with somebody, but no further word on injuries.

September 28, 2009 - 7:23am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, elba, byron, pembroke, Darien, Pavilion.

Joseph Kyle Loveland, 26, of 665 Niagara Falls Blvd., Amherst, is charged with harassment. Loveland allegedly punched another person in the face while at Chestnut Ridge Country Club in Darien at about 6:30 p.m. on Saturday. The victim was reportedly treated at the scene and declined transportation to a hospital. Loveland was issued an appearance ticket. The incident was investigated by Sgt. Greg Walker.

Pamela A. Loughridge, 41, of 5630 Buffalo Road, Apt. 5, Churchville, is charged with DWI, aggravated DWI with a BAC of .08 or greater, aggravated unlicensed operation of a vehicle and moving from the lane unsafely. Loughridge was stopped at 6:04 p.m. yesterday by Deputy Chad Minuto on Route 237 in Byron.

Justin J. Jaszko, 30, of 8087 Kelsey Road, Batavia, is charged with criminal trespass. Jaszko allegedly entered the residence of his child's mother in Oakfield and refused to leave. The alleged incident occurred Friday morning at 8:45. Deputy Christopher Parker handled the call.

Ann M. Burgler, 49, of 6592 Royal Parkway, Lockport, is charged with DWI, DWI with a BAC of .08 or greater and failure to keep right. Burgler was stopped by Deputy Kevin McCarthy on Route 5 in Pembroke at 2:54 p.m. on Saturday.

Adam M. Gaylord, 29, of Byron, is charged with DWI, operating a vehicle with a BAC of .08 or greater and criminal possession of a weapon. Gaylord was stopped by State Police on Chapel Road in Elba at 10:50 p.m. on Friday.

Stephen L. Nichols, 33, of New York City, is charged with DWI and DWI with a BAC of .08 or greater. Nichols was stopped by State Police in Pavilion at Route 63 and Route 20 at 2:50 a.m. on Saturday.

September 18, 2009 - 9:34am
posted by Chad Flint in sports, alexander, pembroke, Girl's Soccer.

After suffering their first loss of the season on Tuesday at home Alexander tightened the GR Division 1 race back up handing Pembroke their first loss of the season with a 2-0 win in Pembroke on Thursday.  Holley picked up a win over Attica meaning that both Holley and Alexander have 3-1 records and Pembroke is 2-1-1 (Pembroke beat Holley and tied Bergen earlier in the season).  Both Pembroke and Holley have beaten Kendall (who sits at 2-2) and Alexander will play Kendall next week.

Alexander came out quick in the 1st half and got on the board early as Junior Keeper Hannah Wilson hit a booming punt that landed past midfield, bounced over the head of the sweeper, and streaking Sophomore Midfielder Julia Pettys ran onto it, took a couple dribbles and beat the Pembroke keeper low into the left side of the net for the 1-0 lead.  Alexander nearly made it 2-0 when Senior Forward Anna Dominick hit an excellent shot that was stopped by a diving save.  Junior Midfielder Tessa Bigelow hit the cross bar on a shot just before halftime again nearly doubling the lead.

Alexander continued to attack in the 2nd half and again nearly found the net to make it 2-0 as Junior Forward Morgan Mattice found Dominick in front of the net but her first time shot was stopped by the keeper again.  Alexander had another cross that Dominick nearly got on the end of but the keeper punched it away.  Finally with 11 minutes left in the game Dominick found Mattice on a cross at the top of the 18 and Mattice finished with her first touch chipping the keeper who was out challenging the play.

Alexander's defense was strong and organized throughout the game with Senior Leah Johnson, Senior Jamie Neth, Freshman Gabby Kwiatek, and Junior Amber Finan doing most of the marking and Junior Sweeper Savannah VanSon keeping things organized in the back.  Junior Goal Keeper Hannah Wilson made 7 saves in picking up her 3rd shutout of the season.  Freshman Midfielder Abby Shilvock had a great game on the outside marking one of Pembroke's quickest and most dangerous attackers.

Alexander is off until next Wednesday when they are home against Notre Dame.

September 16, 2009 - 1:30pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in schools, pembroke.

Pembroke Intermediate School in Corfu is one of only 264 public schools nationwide to receive a 2009 National Blue Ribbon School award by the U.S. Department of Education.

Only two other Western New York schools received the honor.

WBTA spoke with Principal Mathew Calderon (MP3).

September 15, 2009 - 9:25am
posted by Howard B. Owens in byron, Elections, pembroke, Darien, Stafford.

There are four primary elections in Genesee County today.

There are Republican primaries in Byron and Pembroke for town board seats.

In Darien, there's a three-way Democratic primary for two town board seats.

In Stafford, the Conservative Party will pick a candidate for Highway Superintendent.

Polls are open until 9 p.m.

September 12, 2009 - 7:02pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in football, sports, alexander, pembroke.



Alexander put the ball into the end zone three times in the first half to spark a 21-0 win over Pembroke.

For the second-straight week, Pembroke struggled to move the ball. The offense managed only two first downs in the second half.

The first Trojan's first score came on an 80-yard run by Jay Schafer. 

On the next drive, Schafer again carried the load, capping the effort with a 19-yard run.

Ryan Piechocki scored the third and final touchdown of the game midway through the second quarter, crossing the goal line with a three-yard run.

Pembroke, along with Oakfield-Alabama, has dominated the Genesee Region League in recent years, but has opened this season with a 0-2 record. O-A is now 1-1 after losing to Holley today, 16-7.

Both Alexander is now 1-1.

Holley starts a season at 2-0 for the first time.


September 7, 2009 - 11:53am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, crime, pembroke, Darien.

Joseph D. Becerril, 21, of 320 Polebride Road, Avon, is charged with criminal possession of stolen property and petit larceny. Becerril was arrested at Darien Lake Theme Park for allegedly stealing items from cars in the parking lot. Becerril was jailed on $1,500 bail. The case was investigated by Deputy Jason Saile with assistance from deputies Frank Bordonaro and Howard Carlson as well as the State Police and Darien Lake security.

Joseph M. Hamm, 32, of 580 Glide Road, Rochester, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 and unlicensed operation. Hamm was arrested after the Sheriff's Office received a report early Saturday morning of a car in a ditch off Sumner Road in Darien.

Eric P. North, 29, of 152 Linwood Ave., Amherst, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 and failure to keep right. North was arrested following a traffic stop on Route 33 in Pembroke by Deputy Bradley D. Mazur.

Karen A. Dusky, 37, of 7158 Wright Road, Basom, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08, failure to keep right and endangering the welfare of a child. Dusky was stopped just after midnight Saturday morning by Deputy Patrick J. Reeves on Route 77 in Pembroke. She reportedly had a child under 17 in the vehicle with her.

Carrie M. Capizzi, 28, of 3300 Broadway, Alexander, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 and failure to dim headlights. Capizzi was stopped for allegedly failing to dim headlights at 2:39 a.m. on Route 20 in Alexander by Deputy Howard Carlson.

Heather L. Leith, 30, of 3938  Risher Road, Youngstown, Ohio, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 and inadequate headlights. Leith is also accused of with driving an unregistered vehicle, improper license plates and operating without insurance. Leith was stopped by Deputy Mazur just after midnight on Sunday morning. She was jailed on $500 bail.

A 17-year-old is charged with trespass. The youth is reportedly a former employee of Darien Lake Theme Park who had been banned from the property, yet was found in the park Sunday about 4 p.m..

Mitchell J. Atwell, 24, of 308 Mcintyre Road, Le Roy, is charged with harassment. Atwell is accused of making verbal threats during a dispute with a neighbor.

Christopher T. Herman, 30, of 39 Citation Drive, Henrietta, is charged with DWI, operating with a BAC of .08 and endangering the welfare of a child. Herman was stopped Sunday at 1:05 a.m. at a police checkpoint on Law Street. Herman reportedly had his 4-year-old son in the car.

Julian J. Matla, Jr., 45, of 35 Church St., Le Roy, is charged with DWI and operating with a BAC of .08. Malta was stopped at a police checkpoint at 11:58 p.m. Saturday.

Michael T. Ellis, 21, of 2781 School St., North Collins, is charged with DWI. Ellis was arrested by Batavia Police after allegedly failing to abide by rules set down in a conditional discharge for a previous DWI guilty plea.

Karen Grzybowski, 38, of 24 Audabon Terrance, is charged with harassment. The charge stems from an incident at 10:05 p.m. Saturday on Allegany Road in Darien. No details were provided.

Jacob R. Hennard, 20, of Bergen, is charged with DWI and operating with a BAC of .08. Hennard was stopped by State Police on Colby Road in Darien at 10 p.m. on Friday.

September 5, 2009 - 6:58pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, football, sports, pembroke, Notre Dame.




De-fense. De-fense. De-fense.

A crushing Notre Dame defense led the Fighting Irish to a 21-0 victory over Pembroke.

Pembroke managed only 15 yards of total offense in the first half, while Mike Pratt lead Notre Dame on offense all game, ripping some big runs while Nick Bochicchio connected with Gianni Zambito on two touchdown passes.

The Irish scored on their first possession after Pratt marched the team down the field before Bochicchio hit Zambito on a 35-yard bomb.

A missed field goal by Matt Thompson deprived Notre Dame of the chance to score a second time in the first quarter.

Thompson would redeem himself later in the came when he recovered from a bad snap to get off a great punt.

After two long runs in the second quarter, Pratt dove in from the three-yard line to put the Fighting Irish up 14-0.

In the second half, Pembroke continued to struggle on offense, putting up only a couple of first downs, and finished the game with less than 100 yards total offense.

Notre Dame's final score came in the third quarter when Bochicchio found Zambito again for a 31-yard strike.

Thanks to a reader for the info.


August 24, 2009 - 9:46am
posted by Howard B. Owens in batavia, Basom, crime, pembroke, Darien, Le Roy, Pavilion.

Stacy R. Bechtold, 31, of 1429 East Drive, Alden, is charged with DWI and criminal impersonation, along with several other charges after being stopped by Sheriff's deputies at 10:29 p.m. Saturday. Bechtold was reportedly seen driving erratically from Alabama to Maltby Road in Oakfield. When stopped, Bechtold allegedly provided deputies with a fake identity and false birth date. It turns out, she reportedly was driving on a suspended license and an outstanding arrest warrant from Monroe County.  Additional charges: Driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, reckless driving, aggravated unlicensed operation, consumption of alcohol in a motor vehicle, failure to notify DMV of an address change, uninsured vehicle and failure to keep right. Deputies Chris Parker and Brad Mazur investigated the incident. Bechtold was released to the Monroe County Sheriff's Department on the outstanding warrant.

Christopher A. Saddler, 25, of 3 Lydun Drive, Albion, is charged with criminal mischief. Saddler allegedly punched a candy machine inside Tenney Laundry.

Gregory Seppe, 51, of 19 Manhatten Ave., Batavia, is charged with trespass. Seppe allegedly entered the Salvation Army after previously being told he was not allowed on the premises. He was jailed on $500 bail.

Vincent J. T. Dell, 21, of 17 Thorpe St., Batavia, and Nateeka M. Gibson, 20, of 13 Thorpe St., Batavia, are both charged with disorderly conduct for allegedly fighting at 3:07 Saturday morning. Jerell J.T. Jones, 20, of 17 Thorpe St., Batavia, was charged with littering during the same incident. Officers Dan Coffey and Frank Klimjack handled the call.

Vincent Michael Esten, 27, of 10998 Transit Road, Pavilion, is charged with filing a false report with the Sheriff's Office. Esten allegedly reported that another individual had opened a cable television account using his name. After further investigation, the report allegedly turned out to be false. Deputy Joseph Graff investigated the report.

Jody L. Beaumont, 39, of 8557 East Main Road, Le Roy, is charged with DWI and leaving the scene of a property damage accident.  Beaumont reportedly hit some trees on York Road and then allegedly left the scene. He was later located at his residence. He is also charged with a BAC of .08 or greater and moving from a lane unsafely. The accident reportedly occurred at 5:40 a.m., Sunday. Deputies John Weis and Frank Bordanaro investigated the incident.

Patrick S. Waldron, 21, of 1590 Edgewood Road, Rochester, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater and moving from a lane unsafely. Waldron was reportedly stopped Sunday at 1:15 a.m. at Route 237 and Walkers Corner Road.

Nicholas R. Harig, 19, of 170 Trowbridge Street, Buffalo, is charged with DWI following a traffic stop in Corfu by Officer Edward Caton for allegedly tailgating. Harig was also cited for having an inadequate muffler on his vehicle.

Dustin D. Say, 18, of 1952 Perry Road, North Java, and a 17-year-old companion from Alexander are charged with a felony count of burglary. Say and his companion allegedly entered an unlocked garage in Alexander and stole alcoholic beverages.

Sarah J. Patrick, 19, of Lockport, is charged with DWI. Patrick was stopped by State Police on Route 77 in Pembroke at 9:28 p.m. on Friday.

Chad A. Plante, 25, of Rochester, is charged with DWI, unlicensed operation and driving with a BAC of .08 or greater. Plante was stopped by State Police on Route 77 in Darien at 9:45 p.m. on Friday.

Benjamin P. Greene, 21, of Basom, is charged with DWI, driving with a BAC of .08 or greater, and failure to stay in designated lane. Greene was stopped by State Police on Galloway Road in Batavia at 2:31 a.m. on Sunday.

Daniel N. Brown, 36, of Le Roy, is charged with two counts of possession of a forged instrument. Brown was arrested by State Police on West Saile Drive in Batavia. The initial report was taken on June 7.  Brown was released on his own recognizance.

August 20, 2009 - 6:35pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in fire, pembroke, Flying J.

By the time fire crews from Indian Falls and Pembroke arrived on scene of a truck fire this afternoon, the tractor, but not the trailer, was fully engulfed in flames.

Firefighters quickly noticed a placard on the trailer warning that it hauled an oxidizer chemical and notified dispatchers. Genesee County's hazmat team was dispatched to the fire location -- the Flying J off the Thruway at Route 77 in Pembroke.

While it took firefighters from Indian Falls, Pembroke, East Pembroke and Corfu nearly an hour to battle the blaze, they did manage to contain most of the fire to the tractor, according Tom Yaeger, emergency management coordinator for Genesee County.

The fire was initially reported at 1:22 p.m..

The fire did extend into the trailer, the but it was kept well away from the hazardous chemical, Yaeger said.

The chemical was potassium nitrate. The chemical has a wide variety of uses, including fertilizer and fireworks. At one time it was used as a food preservative for meats.  In this case, it was stored in a small electrical component, Yaeger said, and did not spill or leak.

Still, it was a good thing the hazmat team was already in place because more than 240 gallons of diesel fuel leaked into the Flying J's drainage system.

The system, Yaeger said, is designed to contain such spills and none of the fuel went beyond the Flying J property. Most of it wound up in a containment pond, where hazmat crews were able to soak up most of the diesel.

At 4:30 p.m., Yaeger and his team, as well as Pembroke's fire crews, were still on scene awaiting the arrival of a private company to finish the clean up.

There were no injuries in the fire or as a result of the spill or the emergency efforts.

Route 77 was shut down for a couple of hours as a result of the incident.

The tractor is described by a Sheriff's Office report as a 2006 Volvo Tractor, owned by Homes Freight, Inc., out of Ontario, Calif. The tractor was a total loss.

Previously: Fire involving chemicals at Flying J

NOTE: If any of the firefighters who responded happened to take pictures, we would be happy to share them with readers.

August 20, 2009 - 1:55pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke.

Hazmat crews are responding to a truck fire at the Flying J on Route 77 at the Thruway in Pembroke.

The chemical involved hasn't been identified yet, but there is some concern about it mixing with water used to put out the fire and going down a storm drain in the parking lot.

The fire has been extinguished. The primary fire was contained the tractor with some extension into the trailer.

UPDATE: Around 3 p.m. Route 77, which was shut down in response to the chemical spill, was reopened.

August 18, 2009 - 8:21pm
posted by Howard B. Owens in pembroke, east pembroke, volunteer firefighters.

This is the second in our occasional series on Fire Training Mondays. On Mondays, local fire departments meet and train. It's our goal over the next few months to visit each fire department and show a bit of their training and maybe learn a little more about the department.

This Monday, I was able to make it out to East Pembroke, where I saw the volunteers do an equipment check, learned about their original fire truck, and observed their ladder training on an acquired house.

Previously: Fire Training Mondays: Elba Volunteer Fire Department trains on car fires

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