The Hurricane Hunters, who dedicated their new quarters at Lakeland Linder Regional Airport Friday, get a $2 million budget boost as their parent agency, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, faces a cut from of about $1 billion to $4.8 billion. U.S. Rep. Dennis Ross of Lakeland, attending the ceremony, wouldn’t say whether he supports President Trump’s proposed NOAA cuts.
Youngsters using fire to try to kill fire ants started a blaze that destroyed a house in the 1200 block of Sycamore Street, displacing two adults and four children. A relative has started a GoFundMe drive to help the family.
“I know they’re doing things with robotics, for example, that we could learn from,” Capt. Michael Silah of the NOAA Hurricane Hunters told WUSF News, referring to local higher education institutions. “And so our intention is to bring some of their expertise over and hopefully start growing the next generation of employees, which I think will be from Lakeland.” Crews are working quickly to prepare their new building at Lakeland Linder Airport for Friday’s ribbon cutting (info). The story is part of a larger overview (link) of the 2017 hurricane season, which starts Thursday.
Soraya Matias-Roth, 53, of Lakeland, died about 12:30 a.m. Monday when her northbound Dodge Durango was hit head-on by a southbound Mitsubishi Lancer that had crossed a grass median, the Orlando Sentinel reports. The accident took place on State Road 417, also known as the Central Florida GreeneWay, near University Boulevard in Orlando.
The 20-year-old Orlando woman driving the Lancer also died; her identity has not been released yet. Three passengers sustained injuries, including a 10-year-old boy who was taken to Arnold Palmer Hospital for Children, according to WKMG Orlando.