12/19/17 – 3:06 P.M.
One of Putnam County Sheriff’s Office K-9 dogs is going into early retirement. A post on the agency’s Facebook page says that K-9 Beau is being forced to retire due to seizures. Beau had three seizures which lead to a diagnosis of epilepsy. The post adds that Beau’s medication can alter behavior which can jeopardize court cases.
Sgt. Mark Brecht was Beau’s handler and decided to buy the dog himself. The Agency hopes to raise money for another K-9 officer.
12/29/17 – 2:37 P.M.
Seneca County is hard at work to try and implement a new program and create a special drug court. Media Partner WTOL-11 reports that the give all county judges jurisdiction over drug-related cases. County officials say that this will help the courts be more efficient and have a more consistent tracking of suspects of drug crimes.
The Ohio House of Representatives approved the proposal. Now it waits for approval from the State Senate.
12/29/17 – 2:19 P.M.
Safe Ride Home will be working on New Year’s Eve to keep people from drinking and driving. President Erik Stearns said that you can call them to get a ride.
Stearns explained that the service is not for bar hopping. If you call for a ride they will take you to wherever you are staying and nowhere else.
Drivers will be out from 8 p.m. on New Year’s Eve to 4 a.m. on New Year’s Day. To take advantage of the free service please call them at 419-425-3908.
12/29/17 – 4:40 A.M.
UPDATE – 5:38 A.M.
Findlay firefighters have had a busy morning. First, they responded to a home at 621 G Street around 3:45 a.m. They initially reported seeing flames coming from the back of the two-story home. The fire spread through out other parts of the home before they could bring it under control. So far there’s no word on any injuries. The Red Cross is helping one person displaced by the blaze.
About an hour later firefighters responded to a fire at 102 Hurd Avenue. The flames may have started in a freezer in the house. The Red Cross is assisting three to four people displaced by the fire on Hurd Avenue.
According to scanner traffic, the fire department called in off-duty firefighters to help deal with both fires.
We’ll have more details as they become available.
12/29/17 – 5:30 A.M.
We wrap up our look back at 2017 today, recapping the top stories of the year as suggested by our listeners. Our final story in the series was perhaps the most talked about in Findlay this year, the downtown construction project.
Construction work kicked off in June to make the downtown area more pedestrian-friendly. The plans called for mid-block crosswalks to allow people to cross in the middle of a block rather than at the intersection of two roads. Crews also installed curb bump-outs. The extra sidewalk area reduces the amount of street you have to cross to get to the other side.
The work meant that Main Street dropped to one lane in each direction for much of the year. That, in turn, led to traffic delays at times. The construction also meant events like Oktoberfest and the Halloween parade had to find new locations in 2017.
The construction came to an end at the end of November, opening up Main Street to two lanes in each direction once again.
12/29/17 – 5:10 A.M.
Litter Landing will operate under limited hours for the New Year’s holiday. The recycling center on East Sandusky Street is closing at 5 p.m. on Sunday. It reopens at 7 a.m. Tuesday.
12/29/17 – 5:06 A.M.
Fire damaged a home near Bradner early Thursday morning. Media partner WTOL-11 reports firefighters responded to a home on County Road 26, just south of U.S. 6, around 5 a.m.
Two people and a dog were in the home and were able to escape safely.
The cause of the fire remains under investigation. The home owner’s brother told WTOL they think the blaze started in the garage.
The American Red Cross assisted the family.
12/29/17 – 4:56 A.M.
2017 will go down as the worst ever for overdose deaths in Hancock County. The Courier reports the total could top 20 once the coroner’s office wraps up pending investigations. Coroner Dr. Mark Fox has confirmed 18 opioid overdose deaths so far this year and is still looking into 19 other cases. There were 15 overdose deaths in 2015 and 16 the year before.
Records show 280 people received treatment at Blanchard Valley Hospital for overdoses between January and November of this year. In all of 2016 there were 159 overdose visits to the ER.
Barb Wilhelm is the deputy health commissioner at Hancock Public Health. She says the health department is seeing a higher percentage of deaths related to synthetic forms of opioids. Those include fentanyl and carfentanil.
MORE: The Courier
12/28/17 – 10:29 A.M.
Unemployment numbers decreased for area counties in November. Hancock County has the fourth lowest in the state. The November unemployment rate for the county was 3.1, which is a decrease from 3.3 seen in October and the same time last year.
Putnam County had the second lowest unemployment rate in the state at 3.0. There was no change from October to November but the county had a decrease of .1 from the same time last year.
Wyandot County hit 3.1 in November. THat’s down from 3.2 in October and 3.4 this time last year. The unemployment rate decreased for Seneca County as well. They came in at 3.9. Allen and Hardin Counties were both over 4.0.
10/28/17 – 10:24 A.M.
The Findlay-Hancock County Community Foundation has scholarships available for current college students. Many of the scholarships are specific towards graduates from Hancock County. You can learn about the scholarships that are available and the standards for eligibility on The Community Foundations website.
Scholarship applications will be accepted until February 7. Students need to submit only one application to be considered.