Thursday, December 18, 2008





Freezing drizzle coats area roads
By Kerry Yancey
Monitor Staff Writer

CEDAR CREEK LAKE–A light freezing drizzle made bridges and roads around the Cedar Creek Lake area treacherous Monday evening and all through the day Tuesday.
With air temperatures hovering right around freezing, the drizzle froze on anything above the ground, particularly the bridges on U.S. Highway 175 between Mabank and Kemp, and the State Highway 334 causeway bridge between Gun Barrel City and Seven Points.
Slippery conditions were expected to continue until Wednesday afternoon, when temperatures were expected to rise into the mid-40s, although rain was expected to continue around the area until Thursday (today) and possibly Friday.
Kemp schools delayed opening until 10 a.m. Tuesday, but no other area school district closed or delayed opening.
Road conditions were worse west and north of the lake, but local police departments were busy responding to numerous accidents around the area Tuesday.
Kemp police responded to four different accidents on the U.S. 175 bridges between 7 a.m. and 10 a.m.
The most serious accident involved a westbound pickup truck that slid off the north side of the highway and tumbled down the riprap, coming to rest on the driver’s side at the water’s edge.
Both individuals in the truck were reportedly shaken up, but not injured.
Less than 100 yards away, two westbound vehicles collided on a bridge and slid into the north-side guardrail.
An ambulance reported to the scene, but none of the passengers involved in the collision were transported from the scene, according to Kemp police.
Gun Barrel City police reported three accidents on the SH 334 causeway bridge, but no injuries were reported.
Seven Points responded to a wreck on the west side of the causeway, but the individuals involved were already gone when police arrived.

Holcomb named HC fire marshal
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer
ATHENS–Henderson County Commissioners named Mabank fire marshal John Holcomb as county fire marshal on a 3-1 vote Tuesday. Precinct 1 Commissioner Joe Hall opposed.
“I know I’m in the minority, but I think Stacy Glover has done a good job for the county and should continue. She stepped into an office in turmoil,” Hall said.
Now commissioners get regular activity reports, he said. “We used to be inundated with code complaints about nuisances. I haven’t gotten one complaint in the last six months,” Hall said.
“I agree,” Precinct 2 Commissioner Wade McKinney said. “The department has come a long way, but I want to see the initiatives carried even further.”
“I move to appoint John Holcomb,” Precinct 3 Commissioner Ronny Lawrence said.
Holcomb has been lending his expertise to the city of Mabank for the past nine years and is a 1987 Mabank High School graduate.
He holds certificates as an arson investigator, a peace officer and fire inspector.
“I’m excited to move up to the county,” Holcomb told The Monitor during an afternoon telephone call.
He said he hopes to do all the same things he has been doing for Mabank, including fire prevention programs, seeking additional grant monies, running code and taking care of nuisances.
“It’s going to be a good career change, I’m ready for it,” he said.
Commissioners had chosen Glover, than an assistant in the department, to lead it after Bobby Calder resigned in April, 2006 to serve out the unexpired term. Once ended Glover was tapped for a full two-year term without seeking applicants.
Judge David Holstein said though the policy isn’t etched in stone, that he likes to alert the public to the ending of an appointed term so others may apply.
This time around, commissioners received 11 applications. After an initial interview, this was narrowed down to four finalists, Holstein said.
In similar action, commissioners appointed the original members of Emergency Services District No. 5 in La Rue to staggered terms.
Dan Scott and Ben Bearden will serve for a one-year term, while Leroy Chambers, Jim Palady and Calvin Morris will serve two-year terms.
Also in Emergency Services District No. 3, commissioners filled a vacancy for the unexpired term of Ray Carter, who recently died.
Precinct 4 Commissioner Jerry West put forth Kenneth G. Presley to fill the term ending Dec. 31, 2009.

Kemp woman critical after collision with semi
Monitor Staff Reports
KAUFMAN– A 22-year-old Hispanic woman from Kemp was airlifted to a Dallas hospital Friday afternoon and remains in critical condition following a collision with an 18-wheeler. Also, three children were transported by ambulance to Children’s Medical Center in Dallas after a two-vehicle accident on Fair Road.
According to Kaufman Police Department, Laura M. Sosa was driving a 1988 Ford Mustang on Fair Road (the access road to U.S. Hwy. 175) around 4:10 p.m. when she failed to yield right of way to an 18-wheeler merging onto westbound Hwy. 175.
The passenger car slid underneath the trailer of the semi-truck.
Sosa was airlifted to Parkland Hospital with serious injuries. Of the three children, the 1-year-old boy suffered major injuries, his 5-year-old sister suffered minor injuries and a 4-day-old baby was mostly unharmed.
The driver of the truck, a 54-year-old Rowlett man, was uninjured.

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