Monthly Archives: February 2017

Thousands without power, many schools on delays

Duke Energy is reporting an outage in north eastern Bartholomew County affecting about 1,500 customers, with about 800 more affected in the Westport area. They are estimating power will be restored by about 8 am for some customers. Bartholomew County REMC is reporting about 200 more outages.

Duke Energy is also reporting more than 6,500 power outages in Seymour.

Several local school districts are having delays this morning due to the bad weather and power outages. You can look for a complete list here.

A tornado watch remains in effect until 9 a.m.  for our area.

Lightning suspected in Columbus Warehouse fire

Lightning is the suspected cause of a building fire at a Columbus business Tuesday afternoon. Capt. Mike Wilson, spokesman for the Columbus Fire Department, says that firefighters were called to Columbus Warehouse & Cartage, Inc. just after 3 o’clock after an employee smelled smoke.

Photo courtesy of Columbus Fire Dept.
Photo courtesy of Columbus Fire Dept.

Wilson says that when firefighters arrived, they found light smoke coming from the roof. The crew entered the smoke filled building to find for the origin of the smoke as another crew accessed the roof using the department’s aerial ladder truck. Wilson says the firefighters on top of the building used axes and chainsaws to cut openings in the roof to look for flames. When they did so, they eventually found smoldering insulation, which was extinguished. Authorities say the fire was marked “under control” a short time later.

Investigators say fire damage was isolated to a 20’x20′ section of the roof, while the interior of the building sustained smoke and water damage. Damage to the structure is estimated at $ 10,0000. Damage to contents is estimated at $5,000.

The fire remains under investigation.

INDOT announces bridge replacement on U.S. 50 in Jackson County

The Indiana Department of Transportation met Monday with its contractor at the Seymour District offices to go over plans for a $3.4 million bridge and small structure replacement project on U.S. Highway 50 in western Jackson County.

Harry Maginity, INDOT spokesman, says that Force Construction will be removing and replacing the single-span 90-foot bulb-T beam concrete bridge over Clear Spring Creek. The bridge is located 3.35 miles west of State Road 335 in Owen Township. Workers will also be replacing a nearby drainage structure on U.S. 50.

INDOT says that installation of the three-sided small structure will take place at a tributary of Clear Spring Creek, 6.12 miles east of State Road 446. The new structure is slated to have a 20-foot span measuring 52 feet in length.

INDOT officials say that work will take place later this year, as well as during the spring and summer of 2018. The contract completion date is July 31, 2018. They add that a number of closures will need to scheduled, but that information is not yet available. INDOT notes that U.S. 50 has a traffic count of just over four-thousand vehicles per day.

Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast set for Good Friday in Seymour

The annual Mayor’s Prayer Breakfast in Seymour will be held on Good Friday, Apr. 14th, at The Pines Evergreen Room, located at 4289 US Highway 31 North. City officials say the event begins at 7 a.m. and will include remarks from Mayor Craig Luedeman and music provided by the Lutheran Men’s Chorus. This event is being presented by the Fellowship of Jackson County Clergy.

A buffet breakfast will be offered for $10 per person. Doors will open at 6:30 a.m. Organizers say that the service will begin as soon as everyone is seated. It is expected to conclude by 8 a.m.

If you would like to take part, you are asked to reserve your spot by Thursday, Apr. 6 at City Hall. Reservation forms are available at City Hall.

Columbus North student suspended for having pellet gun

A Columbus North freshman is facing punishment after being accused of bringing pellet gun to school Tuesday morning. Our news-gathering partners at “The Republic” are reporting that the boy had posted a photo of himself, with the gun, on social media. That posting resulted in multiple students informing school staff, says the report.

The paper reports that the teen was removed from the campus and is suspended. Additional action may be forthcoming. School staff confiscated the pellet gun.

For more on this story, visit

Ambulance Garage ribbon-cutting Wednesday in Seymour

Schneck Medical Center and Jackson County Emergency Medical Services will host a ribbon-cutting ceremony Wednesday at the new ambulance garage, located at 721 East Tipton Street in Seymour. The new garage is on the former site of the Indiana State Police Post. Wednesday’s event begins at 1 p.m.

Officials from Schneck Medical Center and Jackson County Emergency Medical Services say the groups are partnering to “better serve the healthcare needs of the surrounding communities and ensure access to emergency medical care.” Officials say the new ambulance garage is targeted at serving the east side of Jackson County and surrounding areas.

Jackson County native receives ISP promotion

The Indiana State Police post in Versailles has announced the promotion of a Jackson County native. Superintendent Douglas Carter announced that Sgt. Paul Adams has been promoted to the rank of Lieutenant and now serves as the District Commander for the Versailles District of the Indiana State Police.

Lt. Adams is a 1988 graduate of Seymour High School. He went on to graduate from Indiana University Southeast with a Bachelor’s Degree in Secondary Education. Lt. Adams graduated from the Indiana State Police Academy in June of 1995 and was assigned as a trooper in the Seymour District. In 1999, he was re-assigned as a detective in Jefferson County in the Versailles District. In 2004, Lt. Adams was again re-assigned to the Indiana State Police Gaming Division at Belterra Casino in Vevay, where he served as a Gaming Enforcement Detective. In 2006, Adams was promoted to the rank of Sergeant where he supervised troopers in the Versailles District where he most recently served.

Lt. Adams, a second generation trooper, is now tasked with supervising all troopers, as well as civilian personnel who work out of the Versailles District, which encompasses ten counties in Southeast Indiana.

Buckler listed as sheriff’s most wanted fugitive

Desi Buckler. Photo courtesy of Bartholomew County Sheriff's Department.
Desi Buckler. Photo courtesy of Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department.

The Bartholomew County Sheriff’s Department has identified 33-year-old Desi R. Buckler as their most wanted fugitive this week.

Buckler is a white woman, five feet, two inches tall with blond hair and blue eyes. She is also known to dye her hair. Authorities say that Buckler has multiple tattoos and is wanted on three outstanding warrants for Failure to Appear in Court. The original charges are for Leaving the Scene of an Accident and two counts of Criminal Trespass. Buckler’s last known address was on Bonesteel Drive in Columbus.

If you have any information on Buckler’s whereabouts, you are asked to contact Capt. Dave Steinkoening at (812) 565-5940 or you can call the sheriff’s department tip line at (812) 379-1712.

Next phase of State Street plan estimated at $2.6 million

State Street in Columbus would see wide pedestrian paths, better lighting and a wave sculpture down the street, along with two new green spaces under a plan laid out last night for the Columbus Redevelopment Commission.

The price tag for the improvements would be about $2.6 million dollars for the second phase of the State Street improvement project according to the report from United Consulting engineers and Browning Day Mullins Dierdorf landscape architects

Christine Eaton with the landscape architects says the two green spaces would be at Stadler Drive and Indiana Avenue. She talks about the features at the Stadler Drive space:

The plan envisions bringing the purple-red brick pavers from the downtown area to line the street in East Columbus, as well as a red metallic wave sculpture that would separate the pedestrian paths on State Street from the neighbouring properties. The streetscape also would include industrial style lighting along the route between Mapleton and the State Street bridge.

The final proposal would come back to the Redevelopment Commission next month for approval and funding.

To see details of the proposal, click here (PDF)

State Road 58 bridges to be replaced in Bartholomew, Jackson counties

The Indiana Department of Transportation is planning to replace two bridges on State Route 58 later the spring, but work on the sites will start in the next few weeks.

INDOT is announcing that it will begin clearing the sites and removing trees at the bridges over Buck Creek in Jackson County and over two branches of White Creek in Bartholomew County in March. The state will replace the Buck Creek bridge in mid-July and the White Creek bridge about 8 miles west of Interstate 65 in mid-May.

The second bridge over White Creek’s south fork on State Road 58 in Bartholomew County will be overlaid with a new surface. That bridge will close in April for about 30 days

Milestone will be the contractor for the $1.1 million bridge replacement project.