Real life practice to get ready for natural disasters.That’s what folks in Waldo County and elsewhere in Maine were doing today.As Meghan Hayward tells us, communications is a big key to success.”Update, Colonel Martin we’ll work on filling this request and get back in touch with York County EOC.”Folks at the Waldo County Emergency Operation Center and other counties across the state are holding mock disaster drills.Dale Rowley, Director of the Waldo County Emergency Management Agency, is busy doing what would need to be done if the disaster scenarios were real. “Basically it’s my job to ensure that there’s an emergency operation center for the county that is functional. So we do a lot of work before to get it up and running and then basically facilitate and manage it during the operation.”Rowley says a crucial part of having a successful operation is knowing the different communication methods available.”We have internet capability so we’re using some online portals for logging information. We’re also ensuring when that’s down we have telephone and fax.In the event phones and internet fail, they have ham radio as a back-up.”Ham radio basically is, they set up their own radio stations in a sense. And they can set them up just about anywhere. They use bans that have been authorized by the FCC. They are a lot more robust then CB radios and can go a lot further.”Ham radio operators were on hand during the drill, sending out test messages.”Mostly just pieces of equipment. We’re looking to find if one county has what another county needs and keeping communication up for it.”IT’s a practice run, but one County Commissioner Amy Fowler says can make a big difference.”In the event of something catastrophic and serious we have a plan and we have training and we can keep people safe, warm and fed.”
The man accused of holding an elementary school classroom hostage last Halloween is scheduled to be back in court tomorrow. 55-year-old Randall Hofland – who’s representing himself – has filed a number of motions related to suppression of evidence.Hofland was involved in a week-long manhunt last October before going into Stockton Springs Elementary school.He’s pleaded not guilty to 41 felony charges, including kidnapping, criminal restraint, threatening with a dangerous weapon and burglary.Hofland is being held in the Somerset County Jail on $1 million secured bail or $250,000 cash.His trial is scheduled to begin in January.
A plea deal for a convicted murder from Vermont accused of leading police on a high speed chase in the Bucksport area was rejected today. 66-year-old Kent Hanson is charged with theft, speeding and driving to endanger, among other offenses.Police arrested Hanson in Brewer in September after they laid down spike mats to stop the car he’s accused of stealing in Bucksport.Hanson was back in a Hancock County courtroom today, where he tried to cut a deal in that case. Hanson served 20 years in a vermont prison for murdering a woman in 1985.He spent six years in a state hospital after pleading not guilty by reason of insanity in the 1964 killing of his wife.Hanson is back in the Hancock County Jail tonight.
Seasonal Flu Clinics For RSU #19:November 3 – Hartland School 8:00-11:00 a.m Somerset Valley Middle School 11:30-2:30November 4 – Etna Dixmont School 8:00-12:30November 10 – Corinna School 8:00-11:00 St. Albans School 12:00-2:30November 12 – Nokomis Regional High School 8:00-11:000 Sebasticook Valley Middle School 11:30-2:30November 18 – Newport Elementary 8:00-11:00 Palmyra Schools 12:00-2:00Afternoon and Evening Clinic – November 4 Newport Elementary 2:00-7:00 p.m.
Schools in MSAD 63, that’s Eddington, Holbrook, and Holden are the latest to report an outbreak of the H1N1 flu virus. The absentee rate at Holbrook Middle School reached an alarming rate earlier this week. Carol Warmuth is the Registered Nurse who works for MSAD 63. “It was reported to the CDC that the absentee rate was 20%,” says Warmuth, “and they’ve been following up and there are a lot kids out, especially at the middle school, with influenza like symptoms meaning high fever, cough.” She says not all of the absenses were a result of the H1N1 virus but a number of the students that were absent reported flu like symptoms. School health officials say there were a few confirmed cases of H1N1, however they say there is no need to continue to confirm H1N1 once they know it’s in a particular community. “I think it’s because influenza, H1N1, the regular seasonal flu, and any other influenza like illness it’s all treated the same,” she says, “you treat the symptoms, you treat with fluids and Tylenol, and Ibuprofen, and rest.” Warmuth says they’ve been stressing prevention in their schools. “What we’ve been doing all along,” she says, “and certainly stepped up this year is teaching kids how to cough into their sleeves or their elbows, and how to wash their hands and to wash their hands frequently and stay home if they’re ill.”The preventative measures have been well received by students and with all the delays in getting the vaccine those measures have been many folks only defense against H1N1. “I’m disappointed because I was hoping that would not happen, unfortunately H1N1 has spread very quickly and unfortunately it was before the vaccine was available.” Bangor area school children will have another chance to get both the seasonal flu and H1N1 vaccine November 4th at the Bangor Civic Center.
Maine’s Attorney General was in Orono today to talk with Students.Attorney General Janet Mills was at the U-Maine campus as part of the school’s Margaret Chase Smith Policy Center Distinguished Maine Policy Fellow Program.The program brings elected officials and policy makers in the state to the campus, and provides students with access to high-level public officials.Mills says this is a great opportunity to create dialogue with students.”See what’s on their minds, to help them understand what the attorney general does. What people in Augusta, the politicians in Augusta are doing, and how we help in the political process. Ya know, they have opinions, they have different backgrounds, they have different views on things and it’s really healthy, good to have that interaction.” Says Mills.Students and faculty had an opportunity to ask Mills about a variety of issues in a round table discussion. Mills also spent time talking to classes about more specific topics.
Some high school students in Belfast are getting a glimpse into the future.Belfast Area High School is hosting a workshop for college and career opportunities. Representatives from a number of colleges, universities and private schools are visiting with students this week.They’ll also stop by other high schools in the area and along the coast, all the way to Bar Harbor. As part of the workshop in Belfast today, folks from the community shared their experiences in the working world, giving students a chance to learn about various jobs.Guidance Director Jim Davis says, “The goal would be for students to really make those connections. What I’m doing in high school is preparing me for something down the road, be it college, which might prepare them for a career or for a specific trade.”Students also learned a little about working in television news. TV5’s Tom Round gave them an idea of what it takes to make it as a videojournalist.
Police are hoping to get hunters involved in helping spot a Newport man who’s been the target of a three-day search.There was still no sign of Perley Goodrich, Junior during an overnight search last night.Goodrich is wanted for questioning in the shooting death of his father and assault on his mother, Monday night.Police are calling him armed and dangerous. They concentrated their search last night on an area off the Smith road in Corinna near Brooks pond. Officials remain in the Newport area and say residents nearby should still use caution.The man’s mother, 64-year-old Sandra Goodrich, is still recovering at Sebasticook Valley Hospital.In advance of deer hunting season starting this Saturday, officials are asking anyone returning to a camp in the wooded area bordered by Newport, Corinna, Kenduskeag and Stetson to be aware of the situation there– and to let them know if you spot anything missing, or unusual.Anyone with information is asked to call state police at 1-800-432-7381, or call 911.
The Bangor Civic Center was packed today. Parents and kids started lining up early this morning to get the highly anticipated H1N1 vaccine and the seasonal flu shot.”The first person in line was here at 3 o’clock this morning…. She said ya know, I do this the day after Thanksgiving to save a few hundred dollars, I guess I can do it to protect my children.” Says Shawn Yardley, Director for Bangor Health and Community Service.It was clear, that feeling was shared by thousands. At times the line wrapped around the building.”My husband’s been waiting in line for 3 and a half hours. I just came an hour ago.” says Renee Perron, a parent.”We’ve had buses of school children through here and everyone has been spectacular. The people in the crowd have been very gracious.” explains Kathy Knight, an organizer.There is a limited supply of the H1N1 vaccine. Right now health officials are focused on vaccinating those most at risk. Knight says, “The vaccine that is currently available will be given to pregnant women and pediatric patients so children k-12.”Today’s clinic was exclusively for students from kindergarten to twelfth grade in the Bangor area. Health officials were notified just last Friday afternoon that they would have 4000 doses of the H1N1 vaccine. It took them just days to organize this clinic. With cases of the flu already confirmed locally, the goal is to vaccinate quickly, before there’s an outbreak.”I was concerned just because watching the news, seeing children in hospitals, and that have passed away, it’s very scary as a parent.” says Perron.Officials estimate they were vaccinating 450 students an hour.”It was a little scary at first, but it didn’t really hurt. It was just a second, so.” one student says.For parents, the clinic might have meant a few hours in line — for kids, a prick or two … But all can agree they’re better options than staying home sick this year with the flu.At 7:00pm Wednesday, officials at the clinic estimated they had vaccinated 3000 peopled. Today was the first of two flu clinics. There will be another next Wednesday, November 4th. It will run from 8:00am to 9:00pm, at the Bangor Civic Center.
Michael Jackson’s much anticipated movie “This Is It” was released in theaters Wednesday.TV5 sent photojournalist Suzanne Laidman to catch up with some eager fans to find out what they thought.
A Bangor man was arrested following a high speed chase in Ellsworth Wednesday.Brent Lovely, 47, is accused of stealing two vehicles.When police responded to a roll over accident on Rt. 1A, they identified the vehicle in that accident as one that had been reported stolen. The driver had abandoned the vehicle after the roll over.The state trooper that responded to the accident then encountered an SUV that also turned out to be stolen.Police say Lovely was driving the SUV, and when he realized that he had been spotted by police, he took off, crashing that vehicle on Rt. 180 just past the Graham Lake bridge.Lovely then fled into the woods on foot, only to be caught later by authorities.
Time is rapidly running out on Maine’s support our troops specialty license plate.It will be retired November 1st, if the state doesn’t sell two hundred more by Saturday.State law requires that each of Maine’s specialty plates maintain a minimum of 4-thousand registrations each year.The support our troops plate was introduced two years ago, and is yet to reach that number.It costs twenty dollars, and raises money for an emergency reserve fund that helps families of troops sent to Iraq and Afghanistan.Secretary of State Matt Dunlap says, even if the goal of 4,000 plates is reached by this weekend, it’s no guarantee that the plate will not be retired.
The group Move-On held a series of press conferences Wednesday outside Senator Olympia Snowe’s six offices in Maine… incuding the one in Bangor.The group is in favor of health care reform that includes a public option.They say Senator Snowe is the primary obstacle stopping Americans from getting health care reform.he group released a report they say clearly lays out the economic benefits of health care reform with a public option.Snowe has voted against a public option twice in the finance committee.
Healthcare reform was the topic of discussion, over breakfast in Ellsworth Wednesday.The Ellsworth Chamber of Commerce hosted the feed focused on why healthcare reform matters and what folks can do about it.Erik Steele was the guest speaker.Steele is Chief Medical Officer for Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems.Chamber President Kevin Tesseo says the topic was picked by request of several chamber members.”I think it’s by far the largest single issue there is in the country today. And I think it not only affects chamber members but it affects everyone.”Tesseo says it was a very good turnout and so far, he’s received great feedback.
The opening of all 32 miles of trail was celebrated in Machias Wednesday.It’s a project that’s expected to bring economic development to the region and connect the town with other areas of the state.Meghan Hayward has the story.With the cutting of the ribbon, all 32 miles of the Calais Branch Rail Corridor Rehabilitation and Downeast Sunrise Trail in Machias are now open.The trail can be used by snowmobilers, pedestrians,ATVs, bicyclists and others.It will eventually be expanded to 82 miles, all the way to Ellsworth.Machias Town Manager Betsy Fitzgerald says she was skeptical about the project at first, but is now behind it 100 percent.”Having the rail tracks here and then watching as the machinery came in and removed the rails and then watching while they picked up things and took them away. And then there was gravel coming and it has just been really cool to see the development of this trail.”The first section of the trail goes from Route 1 in Machias to Ayers Junction in Pembroke.DOT Commissioner David Cole says it’s been a long time coming and was difficult at times, but the final project makes it all worth it.”What we have here is a corridor that had been discontinued in the mid 1980s. Was rusting and rotting away and of no value to anyone. Our challenge was to try and find a way to preserve this corridor for future rail use. But in the interim accommodating a trail.”Cole says they started with a lose-lose proposition and ended with a win-win situation.”This is extremely strategic in being an east-west connection because there’s a lot of north-south trails along the state that go along the rivers, but this east-west corridor has bridges and it will help connect up a lot of the other trail systems in this Downeast region.Sally jacobs of the Sunrise Trail Coalition, which has been a strong advocate for the project, says they have high hopes.”First of all we’d like to see it bring economic development and then the very important thing is the health, the fact that people can get out.”As for economic development, Fitzgerald says she can see it already.”There were times when I couldn’t get into the parking lot of some of the area restaurants because there were so many snowmobiles.”
When news of a manhunt in Newport was first being reported the reaction from those in charge at RSU 19 was as you might expect. Arnold Shorey is the Assistant Superintendent there. “Disbelief,” says Shorey, “then we saw the airplane and helicopter and the swat team and the troopers, it just brought that eery reality that you often see on tv but you don’t think it’s gonna happen in your community.”That shock quickly faded away and after talking with state police the schools wasted little time ensuring students safety. “We started immediately, we enacted our crisis plan, we communicated with the necessary schools,” he says, “from then we took steps, inside recess for the students, like I said procedures for our crisis plan are being followed, all exterior doors locked.”Students are also not being allowed outside the schools without adult supervision. Jim Ivory is a Newport resident who has a child in the Newport Elementary school. “It makes me nervous because I have small children,” says Ivory, “you know personally myself it really doesn’t bother me too much, where as I have a wife and small children it scared me for them, but like I said I know the Newport Police Department is a wonderful force that gives me a little bit of piece of mind.”The people in charge at these schools say the crisis plan will stay in effect, “till he’s caught,” says Shorey, “when he’s apprehended than we’ll return to normal status but the school is acting normally, education is going on and it’s not being disrupted people are not in a panic mode but certainly alert mode.”
H1N1 virus has hit the central Maine schools. At least two students who attend Waterville and Oakland schools have tested positive for H1N1 recently, according to school superintendents. This week between Waterville Junior and Senior High schools more than 250 students have been out sick – that’s from superintendent Eric Haley. Gary Smith, who is the Messalonskee school district superintendent says their absentee rates have been about normal.A MaineGeneral Medical spokesperson tells TV5 that H1N1 viral testing was conducted over the weekend with a small number of cases coming back positive. Five positive cases have been reported by MaineGeneral. For more information on H1N1 please click here.
A man who was stabbed 11 times in the back, took the stand Wednesday in the trial of his alleged attacker.The man testified in Penobscot County Superior Court in Bangor that Ryan Witmer forced his way into his estranged wife’s home in Orrington last June. Witmer is also accused of attacking her, then stabbing himself. The two are now divorced.Witmer has pleaded not guilty to attempted murder charges.Also testifying for the state, a man renting an apartment at the Orrington home where the alleged crime took place.He told the jury that he heard a loud bang, then loud voices that night. When he eventually went into the home, he testified seeing Witmer lying on the floor bleeding. He also says that Witmer asked the question “Is he dead yet?”The defense suggested that the witness may have been influenced by the two alleged victims, but he said no.Testimony will continue in the case tomorrow.
State police say the have sent troopers back to Newport this afternoon after a man was seen along a road in the vicinity of the Pratt and Smith roads around 3:00 p.m. The State police tactical team has been sent to the area. The State Police plane has been flying overhead for most of the afternoon and will remain in the area. The sighting is within a couple of miles from where the van from Monday night’s homicide was abandoned. At this point it is unconfirmed whether the sighting is Perley Goodrich, who police have been looking for since the homicide. Police are urging Newport residents to report any suspicious activity by dialing 911.