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Local News

  • Record high temperatures, no rain dampen spirits for holiday weekend

    The onslaught of scorching dry weather raised concerns about public safety from people staying cool and concerns about fires.
    Over the weekend, with forecasts projecting highs of more than 100 degrees, the Roane County Office of Emergency Services & Homeland Security announced there would be several locations open during the day as cooling centers.
    People took advantage of them, too.
    “I think we had a couple dozen people show up,” said Howie Rose, Office of Emergency Management.

  • Accused killer in Roane custody

    Shawn Smoot was booked into the Roane County Jail on Saturday.
    Sheriff Jack Stockton said two of his deputies transported Smoot to the jail from Mississippi.
    “They left Friday morning about 10:30 or so and they got back (Saturday) around 6 o’clock,” he said.
    Smoot was indicted by the Roane County grand jury last month for first-degree murder in the death of Brooke Morris.
    Her body was found at Blair Road and Old Blair Road last October. Authorities said  the 23-year-old Knox County woman was shot to death.

  • ‘We’re telling everyone not to burn’

    The dry, hot weather is a concern for West Roane County Volunteer Fire Department Chief Charlie Redwine.
    “It’s so dry it don’t take hardly anything to ignite a fire right now,” he said.
    Redwine said the conditions also make it tough to fight a fire, especially for departments that have limited manpower.
    “With volunteer departments, a lot of us have to work during the week,” he said. “Everyone is shorthanded.”

  • Don’t forget Fido’s needs in blazing temperatures

    Soaring summer temperatures can increase a pet’s risk of heat related illnesses.
    Although it may be tempting to spend the day in the sun with a canine companion, the University of Tennessee College of Veterinary Medicine urges pet owners to take precautions to keep pets safe in the heat.

  • Backcountry campfires banned at state parks

    The Tennessee State Parks system has issued a temporary ban on backcountry campfires in all state parks due to dry weather conditions that could increase the potential for wildfire hazards.
    The backcountry campfire ban will remain in place until further notice.
    In coordination with the Department of Agriculture’s Division of Forestry efforts, this burn ban serves as an additional measure to ensure the safety of campers and to protect the parks’ forested areas.

  • TVA to test sirens at Kingston

    Tennessee Valley Authority’s Kingston Fossil Plant will conduct a brief test of emergency sirens at the plant at 11:30 a.m. Thursday, July 5.
    The sirens may be loud enough to be heard outside the plant boundaries. The public is advised that this is only a test.
    The sirens are used to notify plant personnel in the event of a chemical release at the plant.

  • Kingston fireworks display still a go

    Though hot and dry conditions persist through the Fourth of July holiday, the city of Kingston is still poised today to give the good ol’ U.S.A. a birthday celebration befitting the land of the free, complete with a fireworks extravaganza at dark. The reason? “The fallout zone is on the water,” Kingston Park and Recreation Director Rick Ross confirmed Monday. Extra precautions are being taken, including wetting down the launch area. “We plan like this every year,” he said. The all-day celebration includes festivities around Kingston’s waterfront.

  • Three board hopefuls eyeing new RCHS building

    District 5/6, which includes the city of Kingston and East Roane County, has three seats on the Roane County Board of Education.

    Four people are vying for those three spots in this year’s election.

    The group consists of incumbents Marjorie Earick, Rob Jago and Hugh Johnson.

    Newcomer Rhonda Mossing is also running for one of the seats.

    Early voting runs from July 13-28. Election Day is Aug. 2.   

    Marjorie Earick

  • Salvation Army in need of a few good volunteers

    A dedicated but small group of people have kept the Salvation Army in Roane County going strong, but members would like to see a turnaround on their dwindling numbers.

    “Instead of the Salvation Army, we’re down to the Salvation Battalion,” quipped board member Bob Lepsig. “We need to get some folks.”

    The organization is responsible for finding volunteers to ring the bells at their famous Christmastime red kettles for donations that go to help people in the community, including those in emergency situations.

  • Pick and win Tennessee Products

    Pamela Bartholomew shares recipes and more with consumers such as Rockwood’s George Sartin last week at the Harriman Farmers Market.

    Sartin and others who went to the market registered to win a basket filled with Pick Tennessee Products, items produced in the state.

    Bartholomew, agritourism and farmers market marketing specialist with the Tennessee Department of Agriculture, was at the Harriman market as part of the Pick Tennessee promotional tour to different farmers markets throughout East Tennessee.