Public Safety

Capitol Coverage
7:55 am
Mon February 3, 2014

Guns Stay Hot Topic at Statehouse

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After dominating last year’s legislative session, state lawmakers are once again beginning to debate the issue of guns. Republicans are taking the lead this time around, trying to repeal many Democratic bills including stepped up background checks.
 

The background check law was part of a larger package of gun control bills Democrats passed in the wake of the Aurora Theater shooting and shooting in Newtown Connecticut. Republicans say Democrats overreached.  

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Colorado
8:32 am
Fri January 31, 2014

Avalanche Warnings Issued Throughout Colorado's Rockies

As heavy snow continues to fall across the Rockies, the risk of avalanches has prompted  warnings from the Colorado Avalanche Information Center.  Forecaster Dr. John Snook says natural and human triggered slides in Colorado’s backcountry are likely, and says we're nearing "the most extreme we've seen so far this winter."

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Local News
7:58 am
Fri January 31, 2014

Study Finds Higher Rate of Texting & Driving Among Never-Deployed Military

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A study by USAA finds higher rates of texting while driving among service members who have never been deployed than among those who have.  KRCC’s Elaina Formby reports.
 

The company’s study shows more than half of active-service military who have never been deployed admit to texting while driving, as compared to 39% of those previously deployed. The rate dips another five percent for service members within six months of returning from deployment.

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Local News
6:57 am
Fri January 31, 2014

Pueblo Landlord Fined for Code Violations

A landlord in Pueblo has pleased guilty to code violations in rental properties. KRCC's Eliza Densmore reports.
 

The Pueblo Police Department’s Code Compliance Unit executed the case. The 14 units held a total of 70 code violations, including problems with plumbing, pests, and fire protection systems.

Code Enforcement Manager Karen Willson says the property was a source of complaints for several years and that substandard housing is a detriment not only to tenants, but to the wider community.

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Harvest Public Media
7:44 am
Wed January 29, 2014

Colorado Imposes Food Safety Rules On Marijuana Industry

A marijuana plant glows purple under grow lights at 3D Cannabis Center in Denver, CO
Credit Luke Runyon / KUNC and Harvest Public Media

 
Colorado made history when it opened up licensed marijuana retail shops. Aside from just legalizing the purchase of smoke-able marijuana, it also means pot brownies have the potential to be big business.

Food products infused with marijuana’s psychoactive ingredient, THC, are available in stores across the state.

Marijuana, though, is still considered illegal by the federal government. The existing food safety system, which relies heavily on support from federal agencies, can’t ensure that marijuana-infused foods are safe.

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Local News
5:08 pm
Tue January 28, 2014

Cantaloupe Farmers Sentenced to Probation

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Cantaloupe farmers in eastern Colorado responsible for a deadly outbreak of listeria two years ago were sentenced today after pleading guilty to six misdemeanor charges in October. KRCC’s Nat Stein has more.
 

A federal magistrate in Denver sentenced brothers Eric and Ryan Jensen to five years of probation, starting with six months of home detention. Each brother also must pay $150,000 in restitution and perform 100 hours of community service.

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Capitol Coverage
7:44 am
Mon January 27, 2014

Wildfire Legislative Proposals

Helping prevent and fight wildfires is one of the top priorities for Colorado lawmakers in both parties this session. But so far, substantial policy changes recommended by the Governor’s wildfire task force are being rejected. As Bente Birkeland reports, the current package of legislative proposals is not nearly as aggressive as some would like.
 

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Capitol Coverage
8:29 am
Fri January 24, 2014

Wildfire Measures Rolled Out

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Lawmakers and Governor Hickenlooper are touting a package of bills they say will help prevent and fight wildfires. Most of the measures stem from an interim committee that met in the off session. Bente Birkeland has more at the state capitol.
 

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Capitol Coverage
8:41 am
Thu January 16, 2014

Lawmakers Briefed on School Safety

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School safety experts briefed lawmakers on the joint education committee yesterday. They asked the state to focus on preventing school violence rather than simply trying to stop it. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.
 

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Local News
7:52 am
Fri January 10, 2014

Volunteers Sought for Call Center Ops During Large Emergencies

Officials in the Pikes Peak region are seeking volunteers to help staff call centers in the event of another large emergency. The effort comes from Pikes Peak United Way 211, the City of Colorado Springs, and the El Paso County Sheriff’s Office.

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Capitol Coverage
7:09 am
Fri December 13, 2013

New Background Check Law Impacts Gun Sales

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Democratic state lawmakers say a new law requiring universal background checks for gun purchases is working well. Data from the Department of Public Safety shows 2% of private gun sales were blocked because of the law.

Seventy-two sales were stopped because the would-be buyer was convicted or charged with a serious crime; such as murder, sexual assault, possession of dangerous drugs and theft. 

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Capitol Coverage
11:18 am
Wed December 11, 2013

Experts Examine Economic Cost of Natural Disasters

A new study from the University of Colorado Leeds School of Business shows that it may be difficult to quantify how droughts, fires and floods are impacting the state’s economy over the long term. But it’s safe to say natural disasters are already influencing public policy and are requiring communities to shift their thinking. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Local News
7:52 am
Wed December 4, 2013

Warming Shelters in Colorado Springs, Black Forest

Update 12/05/13: The Red Cross Shelter in Black Forest has closed. Only one resident stayed on Dec. 3rd, and no residents on the 4th.
 

Original Post:

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Local News
7:32 am
Thu November 21, 2013

Sheriff Disputes Claims Black Forest Fire was Intentionally Set

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El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa is disputing statements made by Black Forest Fire Chief Bob Harvey that this summer’s wildfire that destroyed more than 500 homes and killed two people was caused by humans and "likely intentional."  

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Local News
6:27 am
Tue November 12, 2013

Pueblo County Maps Flood Damages

Pueblo County has released a new interactive map showing flood damage for the past year. KRCC’s Eliza Densmore reports. 

The main purpose of the map is to share information with state agencies and FEMA.  

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Capitol Coverage
10:35 am
Fri November 1, 2013

Wildfire Committee Crafts Legislation

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A new state committee tasked with studying wildfire issues has wrapped up its work. The bi-partisan group of lawmakers is recommending a tax credit to encourage people to mitigate fire risks and a proposal to give individual counties more authority to cut down hazardous trees. Bente Birkeland has more from the state capitol.

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Local News
7:35 am
Mon October 21, 2013

Broadmoor Bluffs Takes Part in Evacuation Drill

A sign alerts drivers to the pending evacuation drill.
Andrea Chalfin

Colorado Springs officials held a neighborhood evacuation drill for residents of Broadmoor Bluffs over the weekend.  Fire officials say that neighborhood has stepped up mitigation efforts in the past year and a half, but because of topography, the amount of fuels, and housing density, Broadmoor Bluffs is one of the highest risk neighborhoods in the city’s wildland urban interface.  KRCC News embedded with first responders and a family that chose to participate in the drill.  We start with reporter Kate Dunn.

Residential

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Local News
11:52 am
Thu September 19, 2013

Boil Advisory for Water in Manitou Springs

Update, Sat 11:30 AM: ​The boil advisory is now lifted.

Update, Fri 5:15 PM: The boil advisory for Manitou Springs is still in effect, but for certain neighborhoods only. The city says the lower section of Crystal Hills Boulevard and Vias Subdivisions require some follow-up testing, which is expected to be complete tomorrow morning. Other areas, including the downtown business district, are no longer under the boil advisory.

Streets specifically affected by the continuing boil water advisory are:

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Flood Coverage
2:46 pm
Tue September 17, 2013

Oil & Gas Industry, Regulators Scramble in Post-Flood Colorado

Near the Cache La Poudre River, this is one of many oil and gas wells in northeast Colorado submerged in the flooding.
Credit Theresa Gilbert/Weld Air and Water

Weld County in northeastern Colorado, one of the most drilled in the nation, was also among the hardest hit by this week’s historical floodwaters. State regulators and oil and gas industry workers are now scrambling to assess the damage and mitigate the health and environmental impacts.

“At this point – as access continues to be limited and emergency responders remain focused on lives, property and roadways – we have limited information about specific impacts or particular locations,” said Todd Hartman, spokesman for the Colorado Oil and Gas Conservation Commission (COGCC).

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Flood Coverage
8:13 am
Tue September 17, 2013

Rescue Efforts Ramp Up Across Waterlogged Colorado

Colorado National Guard photo by Sgt. Joseph K. VonNida/RELEASED

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:35 am

After rain pummeled flooded communities over the weekend, long awaited sunshine poked through the clouds Monday. Towns are just starting to dry out from days of heavy rain and flooding.

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Local News
5:22 pm
Mon September 16, 2013

Flood Warnings Along the Arkansas

A flood warning is in effect for the Arkansas River at La Junta after days of continuous rainfall along the valley and in the Pikes Peak region. KRCC's Maggie Spencer has more.

The river is expected to exceed its 11-foot flood stage tonight, and crest just over 12-feet by midmorning Tuesday. The National Weather Service says flood stage means some agricultural flooding. Officials there say residents should stay away from flowing water and riverbanks. The warning came this morning and expires Wednesday.

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Public Safety
10:24 am
Mon September 16, 2013

CSPD: Residents Should Stay Indoors within 1-mile Radius of Wahsatch & Dale

Update, 11:48 am: The suspect is in custody. Advisory lifted.


Update, 11:38 am: The affected schools Colorado Springs School District 11 are no longer on lockdown, with the exception of Community Prep.

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Flood Coverage
8:02 am
Mon September 16, 2013

Larimer County Faces Frustrations And Optimism With Flooding

Durrie Bouscaren Iowa Public Radio

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:14 am

Rain ground recovery efforts from days of massive flooding across Colorado to a halt Sunday. Helicopters were prevented from conducting additional search and rescue efforts in Boulder and Larimer counties.

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Flood Coverage
7:56 am
Mon September 16, 2013

After Rain Delay, Colorado Flood Rescues To Resume

Nathan Heffel KUNC

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:12 am

Colorado remains under the spell of water. Steady rains Sunday hampered evacuation and rescue efforts and brought renewed warnings to a flood weary Front Range.

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Local News
7:49 am
Mon September 16, 2013

CDOT: Portion of Manitou Ave. Remains Closed

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Update, 7:00 PM Monday: CDOT has reopened Manitou Avenue to traffic at the U.S. 24 interchange.  In addition, the ramps from U.S. 24 to Manitou Avenue are open. The culvert has been cleared of debris, and CDOT will continue to monitor it.

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Flood Coverage
9:15 am
Sun September 15, 2013

Rescue And Recovery Continues Across Soaked Colorado

U.S. Air National Guard photo by Capt. Darin Overstreet/RELEASED

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:10 am

As flooding moves east across Colorado and rains are once again in the forecast, the recovery efforts continue.

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Flood Coverage
9:23 am
Sat September 14, 2013

Flooding Aftermath Brings Recovery Across The Front Range

Dan Greenwood KUNC

Originally published on Fri September 20, 2013 6:08 am

For a second day flood waters, goaded by heavy rains, impacted large swaths of the Front Range. When skies finally broke, many were stranded, hundreds were in need of rescue and four lives were lost statewide.

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Local News
7:10 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Colorado Springs Officials Release Initial Damage Assessments

Colorado Springs officials have released initial damage assessments following this week's flooding.  Officials note that potential rain this weekend may produce further damaging incidents, and assessments will be ongoing.  Their list is as follows:

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Local News
3:46 pm
Fri September 13, 2013

Damage Assessments Underway in Colorado Springs

Damage assessments are underway in Colorado Springs as heavy rains continue to move through the Pikes Peak region and throughout the Front Range. Officials are urging residents to remain aware of weather conditions as rain is predicted throughout the weekend.
 

Director of Emergency Management Bret Waters says the city and regional partners have been preparing for these kinds of events for some time now, and it’s important to stay prepared.

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Local News
12:46 am
Fri September 13, 2013

Heavy Rains Compromise Post-Waldo Flood Mitigation Efforts

At the Incident Command Center in Manitou Springs Thursday afternoon.
Credit Andrea Chalfin

The White House has approved an emergency declaration for flooding throughout the Front Range, making federal aid available to communities hardest hit by recent heavy rains.  As KRCC’s Andrea Chalfin reports, while Northern Colorado has so far borne the brunt of the damages, post-Waldo Canyon fire mitigation efforts in El Paso County have largely come undone.

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