Grand Rapids

8.21.16:  West Michigan cleans up after severe storm moves through



GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — Severe weather has slammed parts of western and southwestern Michigan as storms moved northeast across the state.

National Weather Service meteorologist T.J. Turnage says Saturday that officials have seen “indications of tornadoes on radar, and very good indications they have occurred and debris lifted up with them.”

Turnage said parts of Allegan and Kent counties, and the outskirts of Grand Rapids saw some of the worst weather.

Tornado and thunderstorm warnings were issued. No injuries have been reported.

Andy Bloos tells The Grand Rapids Press that he could feel his house shaking.

Some power lines trees were knocked down Saturday afternoon. More than 20,000 utility customers in several counties lost power.

The weather service says storms also are expected into Saturday evening across parts of the central Lower Peninsula.


8.19.16:  Police find person who hit bicyclist



CANNON TOWNSHIP, MI –(Mlive)–Charles Driggers, 66, was hit from behind as he rode his bicycle along Cannonsburg Road Wednesday evening.  The driver then left the scene.

He was airlifted to Spectrum Health Butterworth hospital with  spinal damage and other injuries.

Kent County sheriff’s deputies say they arrested the suspected driver Thursday, Aug. 18, a day after the collision on the heavily traveled road in Cannon Township.

Kent County Jail records show the driver is a 49-year-old man. It’s not clear how police tracked down the driver.

Driggers was training for a triathlon coming up in Wisconsin, riding a bicycle west on Cannonsburg Road near Chauncey Drive NE, when he was struck from behind by a white passenger vehicle.



The bicyclist had been riding west on Cannonsburg, on the shoulder of the road.






8.18.16:  Bicyclist in critical condition after being hit north of G.R.



CANNON TOWNSHIP, MI (Mlive)– Police are looking for a vehicle that struck a bicyclist on Cannonsburg Road, then left the scene.

Kent County sheriff’s deputies said the bicyclist was traveling west about 8:15 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 17 when a vehicle approached from behind and struck the person.

The crash happened near Chauncey Drive NE.

Aero Med helicopter was called to the scene and transported the bicyclist to Spectrum Health Butterworth hospital.

Aero Med medical personnel indicated the cyclist had been unresponsive for a period after the collision.

Police have not yet released any details about the vehicle involved in the crash.

8.18.16:  School at Grand Rapids Public Museum opening after overhaul



GRAND RAPIDS, Mich. (AP) — A new school is opening at the Grand Rapids Public Museum, capping off more than $4.5 million in renovations at the museum.

A ribbon-cutting event is planned Thursday.

Work on the museum’s fourth floor included the relocation of administrative offices, new classroom space that will eventually serve 180 students in grades 6-8 and open space for special projects.

The space was designed to enhance Museum School’s instructional model, which incorporates museum exhibits and material from museum archives.

The project is phase one of a $14.5 million investment the Grand Rapids Public Schools district is making for the Grand Rapids Public Museum School. Also planned are renovations to the museum’s original facility for a high school with grades 9-12.


8.16.16:  GRCC board sorts through applications

GRAND RAPIDS, MI -(Mlive) –  There is no shortage of candidates applying to become the next president of Grand Rapids Community College.

Preston Pulliams, president of the search firm Gold Hill Associates, told the Board of Trustees on Monday, Aug 15, there were 30 applicants, plus another six sitting college presidents who might be applying.

“To have 30 applicants at this point is a good sign that we should have a strong pool of candidates,” said Pulliams, about the Sept. 15 deadline to apply.

“Of those 30, we have five or six that I would say would be competitive. I’m getting a lot of calls about the search.”

GRCC President Steven Ender, who began his tenure in 2009, announced in March his plans to retire when his current contract ends on June 30, 2017. The goal is to interview finalists over three days beginning Nov. 15 and then name the next president.

8-12-16 Muskegon Man Dies Following Construction Fall

HOLLAND, Mich. (AP) — A 48-year-old man has died following a two-story fall from the roof of a western Michigan college building. David Torrenga toppled Wednesday from Hope College’s DePree Art Center & Gallery in Holland. He later died at a hospital. The Holland Sentinel reports Thursday that police said Torrenga struck his head during the fall.

8-10-16 West Nile Virus in West Michigan

Kent County Health Department leaders say this is not a human case.

Tests show the mosquito carrying the virus was found in the 49506 area code covering southeast Grand Rapids and East Grand Rapids.  This is also not an indication that the disease is widespread just that the traps were located in this area and we should be cautious.

It’s recommended you use a repellent that has 10-35% DEET, wear light colored clothing and stay indoors around dusk when mosquitoes are more likely to be active.

West Nile is especially hazardous to individuals with a low immune system and the elderly.

8-9-16 More Public Comment on Enbridge Energy Plans

State officials are taking public comments on a plan by Enbridge Energy Partners to install additional supports for its twin oil pipelines in the waterway where Lakes Michigan and Huron meet. The Michigan Department of Environmental Quality says a 20-day comment period began on Monday for an Enbridge application for a permit to place the steel supports beneath sections of the Straits of Mackinac pipelines.

8-8-16 Delta Cancelling/Delaying Flights Nationwide

Delta Airlines has grounded flights for this morning because of a computer outage.

The airline has been tweeting customers, saying its IT systems are down everywhere and that “flights awaiting departure are currently delayed.”

Customers are reporting aggravation at not being notified personally about flights through e-mail or messenger.  Many have reported showing up at airports only to find their flight has been cancelled or delayed.

Locally, at the Gerald R. Ford International Airport, only a few flights have been postponed due to the outage.

The airline says flights enroute have been operating normally.


8-8-16 Gas Prices Jump

AAA Michigan says gas prices statewide have risen by about 16 cents per gallon in the past week. The Dearborn-based auto club says the average price for self-serve regular unleaded gasoline was about $2.33 per gallon on Sunday. AAA says gas prices in the Great Lakes region continue to be among the most volatile in the nation, amid refinery outages and declining supplies.