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New Helipad in Jane - KOAM TV 7

New Helipad in Jane

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    If you have an emergency in McDonald county -- first responders can get you help -- faster than before thanks, to a new helipad.
Volunteers with the White Rock Fire Department in Jane gathered around Station 2 - to await something they've never had before.
The first helicopter to land on a new helipad.
The landing zone, or "L-Z", was built on property next to the station donated by the Conservation Department.
Officials say if it wasn't for donations -- the project would have never happened.
Malcom: "We don't draw one penny of tax payer help, and so, we have to really watch the dollars."
Ed Malcom who's  on the fire board spearheaded the drive which hit several road blocks..but his wife was kept him going. 
Malcom: "She's been in a nursing home now for almost a year, and I am so proud, that she didn't think she would ever live to see this happen...(and here it is)...yes...(and she pushed you all the way here)...yes..."
Assistant Chief Fred Parker says the helipad provides important access, once unavailable. 
Parker: "To have a centralized point for, even half of our service area, to land a helicopter in any critical incident instead of being out on the highway, somebody's yard, the church where we were landing them."
That service area Parker mentioned?  90 square miles -- which includes a stretch of Interstate 49 -- several county highways -- and a number of recreational facilities.
If anybody traveling through the county had an emergency -- the nearest hospitals by ambulance, nearly an hour away.
But now...
Parker "I definitely hope this will cut down on our response time for, us and EMS to the helicopter, but the helicopter here, because now, they're going to know exactly where it's at."
Officials with the White Rock Fire Department say this new landing zone will be able to benefit more residents than just those in the Jane area.
Lahr: "A switch for the outside lighting for the air sock, and for the L-Z, to where another fire department or another emergency unit can use it." 
Making this ribbon cutting a celebration of help, for much of southwest Missouri. 
 

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Chris Warner
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A Joplin native, Chris first started in broadcasting at age 16 at KSNF-TV in 2004..

Chris joined the KOAM team in 2017 as an Associate Producer. In April, he moved into a full-time reporter position. He spent time from 2008 to 2016 in various retail roles around the region before returning to his passion at KOAM. Chris is excited to continue telling the stories of the four states. Chris and his wife Amber live in Joplin and have three amazing children.

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