Mother of twins dies after casino boat fire; donations sought

A GoFundMe account has been set up to aid the children of Carrie Dempsey. The 42-year-old woman, who lived in Lutz, died Jan. 14, hours after a fire engulfed a casino shuttle boat ferrying about 50 passengers to a casino ship in the Gulf of Mexico. She was the sole fatality among about 15 passengers who needed medical attention, according to news reports. Dempsey leaves behind … [Read more...]

Have a very, merry — safe — holiday season

It’s that time of the year that people enjoy purchasing presents for loved ones, and gathering with family and friends — but, it’s also a time when crime and accidents can ruin happy holiday plans. So, here are some suggestions from Shawn Whited, division chief for Pasco Fire Rescue and Deputy Ron Buzzetto, of Pasco County Sheriff’s Office crime prevention division, which seek to help you have … [Read more...]

Sparks flying over 911 center

Controversy is swirling over the leadership of Pasco County’s 911 center, after a dispatcher mishandled an emergency call regarding a wrong-way driver on Interstate 75. Pasco County commissioners also say that residents have reported instances of dropped calls or unanswered calls to the center. “I think it’s gotten to the point we need to think outside the box,” Pasco County Commissioner … [Read more...]

Radio system improvements planned

Pasco County is replacing dinosaur analog with new age digital. The county is replacing a 26-year-old, outmoded radio communications system. New radios, antennas and cell towers will enhance Pasco County’s public safety coverage. In recent years, the existing system has been plagued with complaints by residents about dropped 911 calls. Todd Bayley, Pasco County’s chief information … [Read more...]

Consolidation improves emergency operations

Pasco County’s 911 call center is making strides in improving its operations, according to an annual report of its activities. For the past two years, the Public Safety Communications department has been in transition as the county and Pasco County Sheriff’s office consolidated emergency response operations. The Dade City Police Department also recently merged its 911 center with the … [Read more...]

Young Virginia cancer patient inspired Plantation Palms fundraiser

Christina Jenks recently had her head shaved for a cause. She’s trying to help put an end to pediatric cancer. Jenks and her husband Eric are behind a fundraiser planned for Nov. 9 at Plantation Palms Golf Club in Land O’ Lakes. The event combines a golf tournament, head shavings and fun activities for kids and adults, aimed at raising money for St. Joseph’s Children’s Hospital Foundation to … [Read more...]