Tag Archive for: New Albany Fire Department (NAFD)

NEMiss.News Removing Mus from Main St.


Tornadoes that struck Mississippi Friday evening, March 24, killed 25 people, most of them in Rolling Fork in Sharkey County.

Two people were killed Friday night near Amory, in Monroe County, by the same series of tornadoes.

More than 20 of the dead were in tiny Rolling Fork, the county seat of Sharkey County in the Mississippi Delta. The population of Rolling Fork was just under 1,900 people. Sharkey County’s population has declined steadily since World War II and was calculated as just 3,800 in 2020.

Put another way, if the same percentage of people were killed in Union County it would amount to about 168 lives.

Union County, however, was fortunate. The line of tornadoes came through Union County about 9:30 p.m. A number of buildings, including residential structures, received some damage from trees felled by the wind, but there were no serious injuries.

Much of the electrical service in New Albany and other portions of Union County was knocked out by the storm. However, electric system crews from New Albany Light, Gas, and Water worked through the night Friday, and most power was restored before sunrise at 7 a.m. Saturday morning.

Joe Wilson, who lives near Highway 15 in north New Albany, reported 2.6 inches of rain. Some believed more rain fell in other parts of New Albany and Union County, but there were no measurements reported. There was extensive street flooding in New Albany. Firemen from the New Albany Fire Department rescued three individuals trapped in a vehicle stalled on a flooded street.

Main Street in downtown New Albany was flooded and closed to traffic. It appeared that a box culvert that carries Camp Creek from Main Street to Carter Avenue overflowed and deposited several dozen cubic yards of mud onto Main Street and the Union County Library parking lot.

NEMiss.News Mud being cleared from Main St.

Flooded downtown streets were left with mud, probably from Camp Creek, when waters receded.

Fire Department crews worked after daylight Saturday, flushing the mud and water from the street and parking lot. Prior to 2015 that portion of Camp Creek was a large open ditch. However, the city received a state grant of about $100,000 and replaced the open ditch with a large box culvert.

Camp Creek is a ditch that runs from behind New Albany High School, roughly parallel to the BNSF Railroad right of way, all the way through downtown New Albany. It runs under both Bankhead Street and Main Street in downtown New Albany. It was subject to frequent flooding before the box culvert was installed eight years ago.

The fire department and city street departments worked to clear the mud, and the street department will finish the clean up when the mud on the library parking lot dries.


UPDATED: 12:30am March 25, 2023

LGW Manager Bill Mattox reports that as of half past midnight several circuits of the electrical system are still down. He expects most power to be restored by daylight, although there will be individual customers whose power will not be restored until sometime in the daylight hours of Saturday.


UPDATED: 11:40 March 24,2023:  Flooding streets:

Fire Chief  Mark Whiteside reports to NEMiss.News  that some streets are flooded. Firemen have assisted three people from vehicles stranded in flooded streets. Oxford Loop between Highway 30 and Martintown Rd, is shut down due to trees and power lines on the street.

Original Post:
New Albany Fire chief Mark Whiteside reports widespread local damage from trees blown onto structures.

Many power lines are down and streets blocked. The public is urged to stay off the  streets.

LGW Manager Bill Mattox reports major portions of electric service are down.  As of 11:00 pm NALGW is trying to assess the extent of damage.

“Crews are at work, but it is too soon to say when power will be restored,” says Mattox.

NEmiss.News Landfill fire battled for many hours.


9:33 p.m., Monday, January 16, 2023

Firemen have been battling a big fire at the New Albany Sanitary Landfill off CR 75 since about 2:40 pm Monday, January 16.

Fire departments from Center, Myrtle, Northeast, Southeast, North Haven and New Albany have been hauling water to the site and pouring it onto the fire for several hours.

There is no routine burning at the landfill site, so the origin of the fire has not been determined.

Construction waste and materials from clearing brush, etc. are the only types of material accepted at the landfill, so there is ample fuel.

NEmiss.News Landfill Fire

Large, dangerous fire at Landfill off CR 75

The firefighters have struggled all day to keep the fire under control. Wind gusts of 15 mph or more are making it a stubborn and dangerous blaze. Firemen will remain on site until it is extinguished.

Firemen are fatigued and hope for rain forecast later this evening to assist their efforts.


NEMiss.News NAFD firefighter at Hillcrest house fire.


The New Albany Fire Department (NAFD), as well as assisting firemen from Union County fire departments, had a horrendous night last night.

A late night house fire in New Albany brought the shattering experience every fire fighter faces sooner or later: a victim was trapped in the house. Firemen made entry through a window in one end of the house and, fortunately, found the single occupant of the house that was trapped.

They were able to remove the 63-year-old woman from the flames, but she died a short while later.

It was a tough experience, particularly on some of the younger firemen. It was the first time someone had perished in a New Albany fire in over ten years.

The NAFD has become one of the best trained units in north Mississippi during recent decades, largely through the extraordinary efforts of now-retired New Albany Fire Chief Steve Coker and his successor, New Albany Fire Chief Mark Whiteside..

Coker and Whiteside have overseen extensive training for NAFD firemen as well as hundreds of hours of training for fire crews in Union County’s several volunteer departments. The training has paid off in lower fire insurance rates for property owners and in an enviable record of rescues of folks who would otherwise likely have perished.

But you can’t win every time. Say a prayer for the victim of last night’s fire, her family and friends.

Pray also for our firemen. No firemen were injured removing the victim from the flames last night last night, but all of them are grieving.

Fatal housefire: https://newalbanyunionco.com/deadly-house-fire-saturday-night-takes-life-of-new-albany-woman/

NEMiss.News Hampton Ave. Fire 1-7-2023



A ferocious house fire about 11 pm Saturday night took the life of a 63 year-old New Albany woman.

New Albany Fire Chief Mark Whiteside said the house at 203 Hampton Ave., New Albany, near New Albany High School, was fully involved in flames when fire crews arrived.

Whiteside said firemen were able to enter the burning house through a window and removed a woman trapped inside. However, she died shortly thereafter.

Union County Coroner Pam Boman identified the victim as Pamela Mitchell, age 63.

Whiteside said the state fire marshal arrived in New Albany this morning to assist in investigating the deadly fire. Whiteside said no foul play is suspected.

The fire chief said this is the first fatal fire in New Albany in over ten years.

Say a prayer for firefighters: https://newalbanyunionco.com/opinion-say-a-prayer-for-our-fire-fighters/

NEMiss.News Thunderbird Industries sign



Fire crews and equipment extinguished an industrial fire Monday afternoon, Dec. 19, at 795 Sam T. Barkley Drive.

The call to Thunderbird Industries (formerly Metal Impact) came just after 4 p.m.

New Albany Fire Chief Mark Whiteside said NAFD crews arrived and observed smoke coming from a ventilation duct on the roof of the building. They entered the building and found a large commercial air compressor on fire inside the system. Chief Whiteside said in-house Thunderbird Industries personnel were able keep the fire in check until NAFD arrived. New Albany firemen extinguished the blaze and made sure all fire was out.

There were no injuries and no damage to the building. The compressor suffered damage, but the extent of damage will have to be determined by industrial repair people.

NAFD units were back on station in New Albany by 5:15 pm. Three trucks from both New Albany Stations and 14 fire personnel responded to the industrial fire.

Please share any thoughts, comments or questions in the Comments section below!

NEMiss.News Firefighters' Christmas gathering



New Albany firefighters, their families and retired firemen enjoyed their annual Christmas social Friday night, December 9.

Fire Chief Mark Whiteside gave recognition to several firefighters.

NEMiss.News Retired Captain Bobby Simmons (R), with Chief Whiteside

Retired Captain Bobby Simmons (R), with Chief Whiteside

Perhaps the most popular award of the evening went to retired New Albany Fire Captain Bobby Simmons. Simmons was honored as NAFD’s “Grandfather of the Year.” Whiteside recalled that Simmons could always be recognized on the department’s communication radios by the way he pronounced New Albany. Simmons consistently pronounced it “New-ALLL’-bennie.” Captain Simmons, accepting the award, said he guessed from now on he’d have to pronounce the town’s name the conventional way.

NEMiss.News Lt. Eddie Latham (L) with Chief Whiteside

Lt Eddie Latham, Fire Officer of the Year

Fire Lieutenant Eddie Latham received double honors. Latham was named Fire Officer of the Year and was also recognized for 25 years of service with NAFD.

NEMiss.News Firefighter Richey Bryant (L) with Chief Whiteside

Richie Bryant honored for 25 years’ service

Richie Bryant was also recognized for a quarter century of service to the fire department Chief Whiteside said Bryant is the department’s rescue specialist and handles training for rescue operations.

Chris Whiteside was honored for 15 years of service as a fireman.

NEMiss.News American LaFrance pumper & hose motor car

American LaFrance type 99 pumper & hose motor car. Wonder what it cost in 1928? Check out the NAFD history PDF below.

The Fire Chief told the group he is working on assembling a history of the New Albany Fire Department. He has researched city records and received help from retired firefighters and others. Whiteside said the work thus far is through the year 1928.

A draft of the fire chief’s work thus far on the History of the New Albany Fire Department may be read by clicking here: NAFD History to 1928


NEMiss.News Main Street's Trick or Treat Trail


In Downtown New Albany

Halloween got an early start in New Albany yesterday evening. While Halloween (a contraction of “All Hallows Eve”) isn’t really until Monday, October 31st, more than a thousand children and adults kicked it off early.

NEMiss.News Brady Shettles controls traffic

NAFD’s Brady Shettles demonstrates his artistic traffic control moves.


The Thursday evening party stretched from New Albany City Hall all the way south along the Tanglefoot Trail to the Winston County Library. “Trick or Treat Trail” is sponsored by New Albany Main Street and its Community Partners.

NEMiss.News Dorothy & Toto

Dorothy & Toto have special admirers.

Children and a good many adults dressed up in a variety of costumes and enjoyed “Trick or Treating” downtown and along the trail.

The New Albany Fire Department (NAFD) joined the festivities. Almost every parking space in and near downtown was occupied, some more than once as people came and went. Motor vehicle traffic at Bankhead Street and Railroad Avenue was heavy, so NAFD Fireman Brady Shettles pitched in and directed traffic at the intersection.

NEMiss.News The Mad Hatter Whiteside

The Trick or Treat trail was Mad Hatter Whiteside’s cup of tea.

Fire Chief Mark Whiteside wore a stylish “Mad Hatter” costume, complete with wig and appropriate theatrical make-up. Children enjoyed having their photograph taken with the Chief.


At the Union County Heritage Museum

A few blocks north of downtown, and interpretative art installation, “Articulating Yoknapatawpha: an Exhibit of Kinetic Art,2” opened at the Union County Heritage Museum. Architect Spence Kellum’s exhibit of mobiles drew several dozen art lovers for the reception and costume party. Visitors were encouraged to attend the opening dressed as a favorite literary character.

NEMiss.News Blood Money

“Blood Money” by Spence Kellum represents William Faulkner’s manual typewriter and is designed for display in the Faulkner Garden.

The museum’s Stephen Bennett got into both the literary and the Halloween spirit for the Kellum exhibit opening. Bennett wore a ghost costume, which referenced the “ghosts” in William Faulkner’s short story, A Rose for Emily.

There were, of course, no actual ghosts in Faulkner’s story, but many consider it a “Gothic horror story.” Bennett’s “ghost” certainly added a bit of haunting humor to the occasion.

NEMiss.News Stephen Bennett's ghost

Stephen Bennett as a Faulkner story “ghost” in A Rose for Emily.

The museum had further celebrated Kellum’s exhibit with a day of free classes on the making of mobiles.

A trip to the Union County Heritage Museum in the next two days will reward visitors with two excellent exhibits. Bill Steber’s ‘Spirit in the Soil: Objects and Evocations of the Mississippi Blues’ will also be hanging through November.

More about the Bill Steber Exhibit.

NEMiss.News Auto wrecks, burns on Hwy 30



A fiery single motor vehicle accident west of New Albany about 5 p.m. Friday, Oct.7, sent one victim to a hospital.

The accident, involving a small passenger van, occurred on Highway 30, a short distance west of Union County Road 64.

The vehicle caught fire and was completely consumed.

However, contrary to some preliminary reports, the victim was not trapped in the vehicle.

The victim was out of the van and was assessed by a Union County EMR crew. The victim was sent by a surface ambulance to Baptist Hospital in Oxford for treatment.

Fire crews extinguished the fire in the vehicle and a grass fire that ignited around it.

Firemen and EMTs from the West Union Fire Department and the New Albany Fire Department Rescue One unit responded to the accident.

NEMiss.News NAFD searching for smoke source


New Albany firemen responded about 7 p.m. Wednesday, Oct 5, to a report of smoke in the historic north side of town, but could find no fire.

Someone reported to the New Albany Fire Department (NAFD) smelling smoke in a house at 513 Madison St. However, NAFD Chief Mark Whiteside said firemen searched the house thoroughly with the homeowner, but could find no fire.

There was a distinct odor of smoke in the air in the neighborhood. Firemen walked the area, but could find no fire.
Others also reported a faint scent of smoke as far east as the New Albany post office during the same early evening time.

Whiteside reminded residents that there has been little rain in recent weeks, so they should be alert to the hazard of fire.

How little rain has there been?:  https://newalbanyunionco.com/september-rainfall-in-new-albany-well-below-normal/


NEMiss.News Two car wreck on HWY 15 bridge in New Albany



A two-car collision near the intersection of Highway 15 and Highway178 (Bankhead St.) sent one or more injury victims to Baptist Memorial Hospital-Union County Saturday evening.

The extent of the injuries was not known as this was written, but a public safety official told NEMiss.News there was at least one serious head injury.

NEMiss.News Wreck on Hwy 15 near Bankhead intersection

Hwy. 15 wreck blocked traffic in all directions for about 1 hour, 9-24-2022.

One victim was reported trapped in the vehicle. The Rescue One unit of the New Albany Fire Department dealt with the entrapment.

Three ambulances from Baptist Hospital attended the injured.

The accident occurred shortly after 7 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 24, perhaps 15 minutes after sunset, which was at 6:48 p.m.

From what could be observed at the scene, the two vehicles came to rest about one hundred yards north of the Highway 15/Highway 178 intersection and about the same distance south of the Highway 15/Highway 348 intersection.

An investigation by the New Albany Police Department (NAPD) may reveal how the two cars collided that far from any intersection.

Traffic was backed up for more than an hour in all directions from the busy Highway 15/Highway 178 traffic signal.

NAPD was the primary law enforcement agency on the scene. There were also units from the Union County Sheriff’s Office and Mississippi Highway Patrol.

More details will be published here if and when they are available.


NEMiss.News NAFD members at Mississippi Fire Academy graduation



Jared Dillard, a firefighter with the New Albany Fire Department (NAFD), has graduated, from the Mississippi State Fire Academy.

Dillard completed the seven-week program to be certified NFPA 1001-I-II and graduated Thursday, Sept. 22.

NEMiss.News Jared Dillard and Mark Whiteside

Jared Dillard (left) is shown with NAFD Chief Mark Whiteside. Photo courtesy of NAFD

The National Fire Protection Association certification is necessary for a young fireman to continue his career as a firefighter in the state of Mississippi. The graduation ceremony was held in Natchez.

Dillard is about to complete his first full year of experience with the NAFD.