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Structure burns to the ground on Dawn Drive in West Columbia

West Columbia, SC 06/21/2021 (Paul Kirby) – A structure was destroyed by fire on Dawn Drive in the West Columbia area of Lexington County early Monday morning. The fire, which was reported before 4:00 a.m., had consumed the home by the time firefighters arrived. Dawn Drive runs alongside I-26 off Rainbow Circle in West Columbia. Firefighters responded from the West Columbia Fire Department and were assisted by crews from the Lexington County Fire Service in battling the blaze. At the height of the fire, the structure began to collapse as crews used multiple hose lines to pour water on from all sides. The utility company was requested to respond and cut power to the home to eliminate any electrical hazard. The last of the firefighters left the scene after daybreak. The cause of the fire has not been released.

America Red Cross planning Lexington County Blood Drives as need reach critical level

Lexington County, SC 06/21/2021 (Paul Kirby) – The American Red Cross is holding multiple Blood Drives in the coming weeks across Lexington County as blood shortages and needs reach a critical level. According to Kristen Moore, donor recruitment account representative for the agency, the next six weeks are a critical time. Moore said in a recent email that summer is typically a difficult time for blood collections. This summer, the American Red Cross is already experiencing unique challenges as people return to pre-pandemic activities and resume travel to visit loved ones. As a result of these heightened needs, today, Monday, June 21, 2021, the American Red Cross launched a severe blood shortage appeal to the public. As the number of trauma cases, organ transplants and elective surgeries rise, these have depleted the nation’s blood inventory. Today, there is great hospital demand for blood as patients who previously deferred care during the pandemic present with more advanced disease progression, therefore requiring increased blood transfusions. In addition, hospitals are responding to an atypically high number of traumas and emergency room visits, as well as overdose and resulting transplants. Starting Wednesday there will be multiple opportunities for you to give. Here are a few specific to Lexington County: Wednesday, June 23rd – City of Cayce Tuesday, June 29th – Beechwood Middle School Thursday, July 1st - Town of South Congaree Friday, July 2nd – Lexington Technology Center Just click on the highlighted drive above you are interested in to re-register.

Cayce identifies murder suspect, the hunt is on

Cayce, SC 06/18/2021 - On June 14th, officers with the Cayce Department of Public Safety began an investigation after Jose L. Gonzalez was found dead in a vehicle. He had suffered a single gunshot wound on Groover Circle in the city. As a result of that investigation, Alberto Benitez Osorio-Mendoza, 33, has been identified as a suspect and is wanted for murder Police say that Osorio-Mendoza as last seen wearing blue jeans, a light blue shirt and work boots. He is clean shaven but has been known to have facial hair in the past. Osorio-Mendoza is a Hispanic male approximately 5’07” and heavyset. He has ties to Texas as well as Chiapas, Mexico. Cayce investigators are working with Agents from the Lexington County Fugitive Task Force, US Marshal’s Office and the SCDPS Immigration Enforcement Unit. TIPS can be called in anonymously to Crimestoppers at 1-888-CRIMESC (888-274-6372) or by calling the Cayce Department of Public Safety at (803) 794-0456.

East Point Academy to Host a Community Tween, Teen, Adult Vaccination Clinic

West Columbia, SC 06/18/2021 - Continuing to place the health and safety of students as top priority, East Point Academy will host a Community Tween-Teen-Adult Vaccination Clinic at their Middle Campus on July 2nd, 11:30am-3:00pm. This clinic is the follow-up to their June 11th clinic which saw many students receive their first dose. East Point Academy partnered with Nephron Pharmaceutical and MRB Public Health Consulting to bring the COVID-19 vaccination clinic to life. The June 11th clinic was the first of its kind hosted at a public school in South Carolina. “Public Health is Community Health. Our clients have overcome so many obstacles during the biggest public health crisis of our lives….” remarked Founder and CEO of MRB Public Health Consulting, Maudra Brown. “We are happy to organize the first vaccine clinic for adolescents at a school because we know vaccination and prevention methods will help us get out of the Pandemic and move toward more normal day-to-day living. We continue to bring cutting-edge and evidence-based solutions to all the communities, businesses, and organizations we partner with.” Echoing Brown’s statement, East Point Academy Board Member Dr. Mieke Perez said “As a member of the East Point Academy Board of Directors, I take seriously the safety and well-being of every student that we are privileged to nurture and educate on a daily basis...I am a fully vaccinated physician since last December, and my 14-year-old middle schooler safely received his vaccination in June...Please help us grow the population of vaccinated youth.” Community members wanting to receive their first or second dose should arrive at East Point Middle Campus at 1401 Leaphart St. West Columbia, SC between 11:30am and 3pm. You do not need to bring anything with you, but youth need to be accompanied by a parent or guardian.

Yes, they serve a purpose

Lexington, SC 06/18/2021 (Sheriff Jay Koon) - Sometimes it just seems so slow! Why are there limits? You’re late to work, late to school or to an important meeting. So, you speed a little bit to make up time. But, is it really worth it? After all, does an extra 10mph hurt anyone? The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration reports that the probability of death, disfigurement, or debilitating injury grows with higher speed at impact. Such consequences double for every 10 mph over 50 mph that a vehicle travels. Why take the risk? Posted speed limits are in place for one reason: safety; the safety of you, your passengers and others on the roadway. In 2017, the S.C. Department of Public Safety noted there was one traffic collision every 3.7 minutes; with 17,453 people being injured in collisions caused by exceeding the speed limit or driving too fast for conditions. Injuries and fatalities also increase within work zones and during inclement weather. Not only is speeding unsafe, it wastes fuel. The U.S. Department of Energy reports that aggressive driving—speeding, excessive braking and quickly accelerating—can lower your gas mileage by roughly 15% to 30% at highway speeds and 10% to 40% in stop-and-go traffic. With the current gas prices, it makes sense to slow down. Our Traffic Division conducts extra patrols throughout the county on a weekly basis. Areas selected are typically those with a higher percentage of citizen inquiry and safety concerns. Deputies are looking for dangerous drivers, those not wearing seat belts or obeying speed limits. If you’re caught and ticketed, you’re guilty of a misdemeanor (SC Law §56-5-1520) and could face fines or jail time. There is no such thing as a ‘buffer zone’ for speeding. If the thought of a speeding ticket isn’t consequence enough, think about the lives you would be impacting if you got into a wreck. Or the higher insurance rates. It’s just not worth it.

Lexington PD to hold Traffic Safety Checkpoints tonight in town

Lexington, SC 06/18/2021 – Chief Terrence Green of the Lexington Police Department announced Thursday that the department will be conducting several Public Safety Checkpoints tonight, Friday, June 18, 2021, All of these will be inside the incorporated Town of Lexington. Officers will be conducting the Public Safety Checkpoint in response to collision incidents, Citizen Traffic Complaints, and previous enforcement in this area focused on speeding and unsafe driving practices. Officers will be checking driver’s licenses, vehicle registration, and insurance requirements. The Lexington Police Department is committed to ensuring safer roadways within the Town of Lexington for its citizens and visitors through enforcement and education.

Single family home destroyed by fire in Cayce Thursday

Cayce, SC 06/18/2021 (Paul Kirby) – A single family home caught fire and burned Thursday afternoon in the City of Cayce. The fire, reported just before 5:00 p.m., was in the 2700 block of Brookcliff Road in the Riverland Park neighborhood. Officers from the Cayce Department of Public Safety were first on scene and had heavy smoke coming from the home. when they arrived. Firefighters pulled in, set up to make an aggressive attack, and began to fight the fire. In just a short time, the order for all personnel on the fire ground to get out of the house was given. This was necessary because the fire had already compromised the structural integrity of the home. Manpower and equipment were rushing to the scene from across that region after being requested for mutual aid. The City of West Columbia, Lexington County, and the City of Columbia were dispatched to assist. Firefighters from the west side of the river were able to gain the upper hand on the fire before Columbia firefighters arrived so that city's equipment was released before reaching the scene. By the time additional resources began pulling in, the flames had grown to the point that the fire breached the roof. Firefighters rolling out of Lexington County’s Station 33, located in the industrial park off Charleston Highway near Pine Ridge Drive, reported they had a heavy column of black smoke in the sky as soon as they went enroute. Another home nearby began to catch fire from the intense heat of the flames consuming the home of origin. Firefighters quickly addressed that before it could take hold. With the assistance of all firefighters on the scene, teams were able to increase the amount of water they were putting on the fire. The flames had a good start before Cayce arrived and its deep-seated nature caused the home to collapse. In the end, it was a total loss. Cayce officials report that the homeowner and a dog were able to escape from the home before they arrived on scene. They have not publicly said what started the blaze.

Ready for a lake party mon?

Lake Murray, S.C. 06/17/2021 - It's just a few days away. The 9th annual Reggaetronic Music Festival is returning to Spence Island on Lake Murray this Saturday, June 19, 2021. If you have never been to Reggaetronic, don’t worry, we will try to paint a picture for you. Imagine being on a boat, cruising around and then coming around the corner to the cove of Spence Island seeing hundreds of boats and hearing exactly the type of music you want to hear when on an island. The lineup this year includes Tropidelic, Little Stranger, Henry Fong, Sun Dried Vibes, and Lefty at the Washout. Reggaetronic is partnering with Monster Energy, Tidewater Boats, Wilson Marine, and others to put on this completely free floating music festival to the public. “We are so excited to return to Spence Island after two years away,” said Founder Ronnie Alexander. “We are happy to bring this completely free floating event back to our home state that highlights friendship, fellowship, and the start of summer. This festival starts the beginning of our two music festivals that will happen in 2021.” Reggaetronic Music Festival will have a land and water event at Riverfront Park in North Charleston, S.C. on 14 August 2021. This event will be ticketed. In 2019, we had 28 different states attend this event. With VIP boat row selling out this year, we anticipate over 2,000 boats and expect over 30 different states this year to visit the Jewel of South Carolina as supporting sponsor Capital City Lake Murray country labels Lake Murray. Reggaetronic Music Festival is South Carolina’s longest running flotilla music festival. The festival is a celebration of modern reggae, funk, rock, and electronic music creating an environment of friendship, fellowship, and good vibes in the spirit of the Palmetto State. A portion of proceeds from the festival benefit the Jamil Temple Shriners contributions to the Children’s Hospital of South Carolina. Reggaetronic can be found on Facebook and Instagram @reggaetronicsc.

Pedestrian killed in Cayce collision

Cayce, SC 06/17/2021 (Paul Kirby) - Lexington County Coroner Margaret Fisher has now identified the pedestrian who was killed when he was struck by a motor vehicle on Wednesday, June 16, 2021. This collision occurred at approximately 5:00 a.m. in the 1900 block of Airport Boulevard in Cayce. According to Coroner Fisher, Robert S. Householder III, 43, of Ridge Spring was walking across the roadway when he was struck by the vehicle. He was pronounced dead at the scene due to his injuries. The driver of the vehicle, who was not injured, remained on scene, and is cooperating with law enforcement officers. The Cayce Department of Public Safety is investigating leading the investigation.

Pine Ridge citizen have elected Daniel Davis their mayor

Pine Ridge, SC 06/17/2021 (Paul Kirby) – Pine Ridge has elected a new mayor in the tightest race most can remember. Thursday morning a recount was done, and the results were certified. In the end, Daniel Davis won by one vote. The official tally showed Davis with 105 votes cast. His opponent, Kevin Nation received 104 votes. There was one write-in vote. Davis will be sworn in as soon as possible. He will serve out the term of former Mayor Robert Wells which will end in November of this year. Davis will need to run again at that point and receive the highest number of votes if he wishes to retain the job.

Two Northside students to perform in ACDA Honor Choir

West Columbia, SC 06/17/2021 - Two Northside Middle School Concert Choir students have been selected to participate in the American Choral Directors Association (ACDA) Honor Choir for 2021. Northside Middle students Jenna Pownall and Bradlynn Sturkie competed with hundreds of other middle school choral students from across South Carolina. Participants were required to prepare and submit vocal audition recordings. The ACDA Honor Choir Weekend will be held in October at Southern Wesleyan University. PHOTO CAPTION: Lexington Two students Jenna Pownall, left, and Bradlynn Sturkie, in front of Northside Middle School.

Fire destroys one outbuilding, damages another in Red Bank Tuesday evening

Red Bank, SC 06/18/2021 (Paul Kirby) – An outbuilding caught fire and was destroyed on Daralynn Drive off South Lake Drive Wednesday evening. The fire that was reported about 6:45 p.m. also damaged an adjacent structure. Firefighters rushed to the scene from across central and southern Lexington County. Additional equipment had to be dispatched on this call because there are no fire hydrants on Daralynn. In order to have a steady flow of water, firefighters used additional trucks to shuttle water back and forth between a hydrant on South Lake Drive and the burning buildings. The water supply operation stopped traffic on South Lake Drive for a period as the firefighters were working. The primary structure, described by fire officers as an approximately 30’x40’ outbuilding, was completely destroyed as it was fully involved on arrival of the first fire equipment. The second exposed outbuilding also caught fire but the extent of the damages to that have not been released.

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