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The latest happenings in your city government.


Firefighter Steven Connors Promoted to Driver Engineer




On Wednesday, November 13, 2013 Firefighter Steven Connors was promoted to Driver Engineer, the youngest firefighter to do so in LFD's history. 

 

Steven was joined by his wife and LFD colleagues to celebrate his professional advancement with the Lakeland Fire Department. Steve Connors has been an integral part of the LFD since March 29, 2010. Steve understands the importance of duty and service to country very well, having joined the United States Army at the young age of 17 where he went on to serve with the 1st Ranger Battalion and 82nd Airborne Division prior to joining the LFD.

 

Connors, a Ruskin, Florida native is an avid outdoorsman having spent his childhood fishing and hunting along this great state’s creeks and rivers. He proudly uses that experience and skill to his advantage at the annual Fire Olympics with repeated attempts to dethrone Gilman, Herndon and Brannen.

 

He is an East Bay High School graduate and has since gone on to receive his Associate of Arts degree from Hillsborough Community College and holds certification in law enforcement, fire standards, and is a paramedic.

 

Steve credits his ability to have become a Driver Engineer to the training and support of his crew and all of his family at the LFD. Steve notes that he will deeply miss his brothers and sisters on B shift due the move from this new opportunity but looks forward to the day he can work closely with them again.

 

Congratulations to Steven Connors and sincere thanks for his dedicated service. 

 


SLEEPY HILL ROAD TRAFFIC SIGNAL INSTALLATION

 

LAKELAND, FL (November 13, 2013) -- A new traffic signal on a steel mast will be installed on Sleepy Hill Road at the at the Sleepy Hill Middle School driveway.  Preliminary foundation work has started and signal installation is scheduled to begin the first week of December. 

 

This project is being funded by the Polk County School Board and construction will be performed by the City of Lakeland’s Public Works Traffic Operations and Construction & Maintenance Divisions. 

 

The signal will operate only during school hours when school is in session to allow traffic to exit the school.  The signal will feature a “protected pedestrian phase” permitting students to safely cross Sleepy Hill Road while opposing traffic is stopped.  The project also includes marked crosswalks with ADA compliant pedestrian ramps and school crossing signs.  

 

No road closures or traffic detours will be required, however intermittent lane closures are likely and will be restricted to the time period between 9 a.m. – 2 p.m. so access to the school will not be  inconvenienced.  The traffic signal work should be completed by mid-December and the signal will be allowed to operate in the “flash mode” until students return from winter break on January 6, 2014 when the signal will be fully operational.  

 

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CITY OF LAKELAND TO LAUNCH TRAKiT

Users can track building permits, inspections, site plans, land use/zoning applications

 

LAKELAND, FL (October 29, 2013) -- The City of Lakeland is pleased to announce the launch of TRAKiT, a comprehensive and centralized software solution that allows unparalleled flexibility in automating and coordinating the construction permitting process.  TRAKiT will go live Thursday, November 14, 2013 after more than a year of planning and implementation.

 

The Building Inspection, Business Tax and Code Enforcement offices will be CLOSED Wednesday, November 13th to ensure a seamless transition for customers.  All offices will reopen to the public at 8:00 a.m. on Thursday the 14th.

 

The customer friendly web based system tracks all building permits, inspections, business tax receipts, site plan reviews as well as annexation/land use/zoning applications allowing users to manage projects more efficiently. TRAKiT also allows users to track and review code enforcement violations. 

 

Once live, TRAKiT’s web-based eTRAKiT module will allow citizens, business owners, contractors, architects, and engineers to apply for select permits, view the status of projects, permits, and code cases, and request permit inspections.  Customers will also have the ability to pay permit, planning through eTRAKiT, and in-person via credit card, a payment method which was previously unavailable.

 

 As with any project of this magnitude, there could be unanticipated challenges during the transition to the new software and while staff will be working diligently to minimize impacts, customer patience and indulgence are appreciated as the City moves to this enhanced customer service solution.

 

 


Lakeland Firefighters Respond to Lake Bentley Shores Condominium Fire
Four Injured, Including One Firefighter

Lakeland --- At approximately 1:10 AM, on Friday, November 8, 2013, the Lakeland Fire Department (LFD) responded to a structure fire at Lake Bentley Shores Condominiums located at 1920 E. Edgewood Drive, Lakeland, FL. The fire effected building L, a two story building that housed eight apartment units.

Upon arrival, Lakeland Firefighters found heavy black smoke showing on both the lower and upper level of building L. Firefighters entered building L, quickly extinguishing the fire and evacuating residents. The fire originated in a back bedroom of unit 7 in building L. The cause of the fire is currently under investigation but investigators believe that it was not intentionally set.

Resident Lamarcus Carter, 58, resident of unit L7 where the fire originated sustained smoke inhalation and was transported to Lakeland Regional Medical Center (LRMC). A relative of Lamarcus and additional resident of Unit L7, Ross Carter, 23, was transported by helicopter to Tampa General Hospital for burns and smoke inhalation. Their current medical conditions are unknown to LFD. Fred Cottonjim, 77, a neighbor of the Carters sustained unknown non-fire related injuries while trying to evacuate and was also transported to LRMC for treatment.

In addition to the three residents injured and transported, Firefighter Alex Sanchez, 32, displayed signs of heat exhaustion as a result of fighting the blaze. He was transported to and treated at LRMC where he was released soon after at approximately 5:00 AM. Sanchez was one of several firefighters that entered the structure to both extinguish the fire and evacuate residents.

The Lakeland Fire Department responded with eight apparatuses and 18 personnel. The scene was cleared by 6:30 AM.