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GREAT SHAKEOUT set for Thursday in Illinois

With a couple of earthquake faults cradling Illinois' southern region,the state’s emergency management agency says it’s important to know what to do if an earthquake breaks out.

At 10:19 a.m. Thursday, Oct. 19, the Great Shakeout is scheduled to take place. That’s when Illinois Emergency Management Agency Communications Manager Patti Thompson said people should practice the basics: drop, cover and hold.

“You should drop down to the ground,” Thompson said, “so that it doesn't shake you and you fall and hurt yourself. Take cover under some heavy piece of furniture like a table or a desk and then cover the back of your head and neck with your arms.”

Thompson said with the New Madrid fault and the Wabash Valley fault along the state’s southern region, earthquakes are a real threat.

“The New Madrid Seismic Zone is the more well known [fault],” Thompson said. Earthquakes there in the early 19th century were among the strongest
earthquakes in the U.S.

“But we’ve actually felt more activity in recent years out of the Wabash Valley Seismic Zone, which is on the southeastern side of the state,” she said.

University of Illinois Civil Engineering Professor Dan Abrams said there’s a low probability of earthquakes, but “when it does happen, it could be a big one.”

The Wabash Valley fault "is an extension of the New Madrid,” Abrams said. “We have had earthquakes there. It’s probably a less magnitude but more frequency. That’s still alive and kicking. We should be aware of that.”

Gas and pipelines could be impacted by an earthquake, and the damages could be even more severe than in California, he said.

“We should be cognisant of the risk, which would spread across a much greater area,” Abrams said.

Thompson said the Great Shakeout drill isn’t just good for local residents, but for those who are looking to travel.

“We have people in Illinois that travel all throughout the United States and around the world,” Thompson said. “And as you’ve seen,there have been some very major and very deadly earthquakes that have happened, most recently in Mexico.”

Thompson said what you shouldn't do if the ground starts to shake is to try running away, or run outside. That’s where you could encounter falling debris from buildings impacted by the shaking. If there ever were a severe earthquake, Thompson said IEMA is ready to work with emergency responders around the state in the recovery

There are more than 2.6 million registered participants for the central region of the U.S. More than 52.8 million people have registered worldwide.

For more information and to register for the Great Shakeout drill,visit Shakeout.org.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

UPDATE: Police chase ends in Tippecanoe County; driver and girl identified

Police in Indiana have a Wisconsin man in custody following a multistate pursuit that ended on Interstate 65 in Tippecanoe County today (Wednesday).

30-year-old Kenneth Brown of Milwaukee (Wis) abducted his two-year-old daughter, then stole a vehicle. The girl was identified as 2-year-old Kendra Faith Brown.

Kenneth Brown was pulled over in Decatur, Illinois, around 11 p.m for a traffic violation unrelated to the alleged abduction. He then drove off and fled from police.

Brown allegedly drove to a Watseka (Illinois) Walmart. There, Police say he told a woman that he had abducted a child and stolen a vehicle. The woman called police.

Brown left Watseka headed east on State Road 24 toward Indiana. That’s when an Iroquois County dispatch alerted Kentland and Newton County authorities. Brown refused to stop for the Indiana police at Route 24 and SR 71. He headed south on I-65 into Lafayette before he was finally stopped by a police roadblock.

Kenneth Brown allegedly held a knife to his daughter's neck before eventually being subdued with a stun gun.

Kendra Brown was taken to a Lafayette hospital. Police say she is OK.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

McNamara forfeits football game due to Chicago violence

The Kankakee Daily-Journal is reporting this week's high school game between Bishop McNamara and Chicago Hope Academy has been cancelled.  McNamara is forfeiting due to safety concerns.

McNamara Principal Terry Granger states in a news release, "student and fan safety is always our number one priority during athletic competitions."  Other options were pursued, including a neutral site, but when no mutual agreement could be reached the difficult decision was made.

Chicago gun violence is the reason for the forfeiture.  Chicago Hope Academy plays its home games at Altgeld Park in the East Garfield Park neighborhood on the citry's west side. An earlier game (Sept 29th) had gunfire interrupting a contest against Providence High School.  The game did eventually get played, but then the following week had Wheaton St. Francis forfeit its game against Hope and now, McNamara is also electing to forfeit. 

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Gunfire injures 2 in Kankakee

Kankakee Police are investigating a Tuesday afternoon shooting that injured two people on North Greenwood Avenue.  Detectives responded to the 700-block about 4:30 pm.

One of the victim was reported in critical condition.    Details not yet available.

94.1 WGFA

  • Parent Category: News

Wisconsin man in custody after police chase in Indiana

A 30-year-old Milwaukee, WI man is facing charges after leading Indiana police authorities on a chase that ended this (Wed) morning in Tippecanoe County, IN.

Newton County Sheriff’s Police identify the man as Kenneth Brown from South Milwaukee, WI. He was being treated at a hospital for a self-inflicted knife wound.

A child in his car was safely recovered.

Sheriff’s Police in Newton County report a dispatch from Iroquois County at 3 am today alerted them to a mini-van that headed east on Route 24 from Watseka. The driver of the van had told another individual in Watseka that he had kidnapped a child.

Kentland Police and Newton County deputies attempted to stop the mini-van on Route 24 near State Road 71. The driver refused to stop and led police on a 50-minute pursuit thru four counties before the pursuit ended about 5 am on I-65.

The abducted 2-year-old female was safely recovered without injury.

94.1 WGFA