News Update for 2/.21/19

While Florida officials note a record number of tourists statewide last year, VisitSebring authorities have not said how that translated locally. Although the local tourism marketing arm has been presented with some prestigious awards, it remains unclear if that has amounted to “heads in beds.”
Officials of the Sebring International Raceway last year boasted the largest attendance since the 50th anniversary for last year’s Mobil 1 12 Hours of Sebring presented by Advance Auto Parts and expect a bigger crowd this year due to the addition of a World Endurance Championship race.

The transition to a countywide fire service is taking another step forward with a fleet of new vehicles. The emergency cars will be painted “Siren Red Tintcoat” – a rather deep maroon color. The EMS, Fire, Battalion, and Chief’s Sport Utility Vehicles are being striped, decaled and marked.
County officials say they will make their road debut soon.

An industrial accident yesterday sent a man to the hospital. The mishap occurred at an address on Penski Road near Venus. Authorities say a man was impaled when something he was grinding kicked back and pierced his chest.
The victim reportedly was airlifted to Lee Memorial Hospital.

An accident in the south end of the county last night sent two people to the hospital. Highlands County sheriff’s officials say apparently as sedan and a sports car were involved in the mishap when one rear-ended the other. It happend on State Road 70 shortly after 8:00 last night.
Two people were transported to Advent Health Lake Placid. Their names and other details have not yet been released.

The death investigation continues after an AdventHealth employee’s body was found in the employee’s parking lot of the hospital’s Sun ‘N Lake location. According to reports, 55-year-old Robert E Burns was found in his Mazda CX5.
Cause of his death remains under investigation
Burns apparently relocated to Highlands County recently from New York. Said to have been a chef, he reportedly had been working for the food service at Advent Health.

The Cracker Trail Riders are in Highlands County – at least a bit longer. After their annual stop at Cracker Trail Elementary School yesterday, the 150 riders and wagoneers celebrated the half-way point in the ride, crossing Highway 27 South of Sebring at the intersection of State Road 66 and Highway 98.
The ride re-creates the route taken by historic Florida cowmen after driving their cattle to market.
The group overnighted in Highlands County, they’ll now head out for Okechobee. The ride will wind up this weekend in Fort Pierce.