Council hears emergency services reports

By Sam Wildow - Piqua Daily Call

COVINGTON — Covington Fire and Rescue, along with the Covington Fire Department, presented their 2018 service reports during the Covington Council meeting on Monday evening.

On the emergency medical services side of Covington Fire and Rescue, Lt. Mary Wright reported that they responded to 585 calls for service and they made 379 transports during 2018. EMS responded to 387 calls in Covington, 134 calls in Newberry Township, 18 calls in Pleasant Hill, 14 calls in Piqua, and a handful of other calls in the surrounding area.

The average EMS response time was two minutes and 25 seconds. Their heaviest call volumes took place at 11 a.m., 1 p.m., and 7 p.m. on Thursdays and Fridays.

“We did have a decrease in calls from last year,” Wright said. She said that EMS responded to 663 calls in 2017. She suggested that it was due to a decrease in mutual aid calls this year that led to the decrease in total calls for service, as they responded to 115 mutual aid calls in 2017 and 64 mutual aid calls in 2018.

On the fire side, Fire Chief Bart Weer reported that they had 222 runs in 2018. The fire department responded to 59 calls in Covington, 35 calls in Newberry Township, 63 calls in Piqua, 35 calls in Washington Township, 11 calls in Newton Township, and a handful of other calls in the surrounding area.

The fire department’s average response time is four minutes and 28 seconds, which Weer said was good for a volunteer fire department. Their highest call volumes took place at 5 a.m. on Sundays.

“The weekends are pretty busy,” Weer said.

Of their calls, dispatch canceled 107 while they were en route. They responded to 12 building fires, 25 incidents of something overpressuring or overheating, four gas leaks, eight carbon monoxide incidents, 12 cover assignments or on standby, nine motor vehicle accidents with injuries, seven motor vehicle accidents with no injuries, and a number of single responses to other types of incidents.

Covington Police Department Chief of Police Lee Harmon reported that the police department investigated 2,771 complaints or calls for service in 2018. They cleared 2,763 complaints. They had 533 arrests, of which 41 were felonies. They completed 19,835 business checks. They issued 258 traffic citations, 415 traffic stop warnings, and 11 parking citations. They also served 20 warrants.

The majority of the arrests and citations included 48 for driving under suspension, 44 for drug abuse, 37 traffic control devices, 36 for drug paraphernalia, 35 for vehicle equipment violations, 32 for expired registration, 27 OVIs, 16 incidents of trespassing, 16 incidents of disorderly conduct, and so on.

Also during their meeting, the council approved moving forward with the design portion of the basketball court improvement project. The council approved a resolution authorizing Village Administrator Mike Busse to contract with Poggemeyer Design Group for basketball reconstruction design, bidding, and construction administration services at a cost of $17,850. The design for the basketball court renovations is expected to be done in the spring, with the project going out to bid in July and then going under construction in August. A donation of $5,000 from the Optimist Club of Covington is going toward the project.

The council also approved a resolution authorizing contracting with Invoice Cloud for online billing and payment services.

In regard to new business before the council, the council held the first reading of the village’s 2019 budget. The total expense appropriations are approximately $4,519,639.

Then, the council discussed a few items in regard to the village’s ongoing preparation work for High Street reconstruction project.

The council held the first reading of a resolution authorizing the village to contract with Access Engineering for the stage one and two design work for right-of-way agreements and street portion of the High Street reconstruction project at a cost of $97,500.

In conjunction with that project, the council also held the first reading of a resolution authorizing the village to contract with Access Engineering for the design of the High Street water line replacement project, which would include bidding the project and the construction administration services, at a cost of $90,000.

The council also approved entering into an agreement for relocation services for the High Street project at a cost of $3,300. Busse said that this agreement was a requirement from the Ohio Department of Transportation for the High Street project as the village purchased properties that were previous rentals in the project area. Busse said that the relocation services will determine if there is any compensation required to be given to the former tenants of those rental properties.

The government center, located at 1 S. High St., will be closed on Feb. 18, for President’s Day. The next council meeting has been rescheduled for 7 p.m. on Feb. 19, at the government center. There will also be public hearing during that meeting to review planning and zoning’s recommendations for amendments to the official zoning map.

Judy Smith was absent during Monday’s meeting.

By Sam Wildow

Piqua Daily Call

Reach Sam Wildow at

Reach Sam Wildow at