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Battle of Chickamauga reenactment held in Lafayette

LAFAYETTE, Ga. (WDEF) — A historical Civil War reenactment took over Lafayette this weekend. Spectators and reenactors met in Walker County for the 160th anniversary of the Battle of Chickamauga. Patricia Salassi (“Major Mom”) said, “It’s really not a hobby. It’s a way of life.” Living historians like Salassi took part in the 160th anniversary… ... Continue Reading

Fatal shooting in parking lot of VIP Lounge

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — On Sunday morning a little before 3 a.m., Chattanooga Police responded to the parking lot of the VIP Lounge located in the 4200 block of Bonny Oaks Drive. The incident took place at 2:41 a.m. When officers arrived, they located a 23-year-old male suffering from life-threatening injuries. The officers immediately started… ... Continue Reading

Officers respond to fatal shooting on Wilson Street

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) –Early Sunday morning Chattanooga Police responded to a shooting in the 2300 block of Wilson Street. The person shot call arrived a little after midnight. When officers arrived, they found a 28-year-old female suffering from life-threatening injuries. The officers immediately started rendering aid in an attempt to save her life. Shortly after… ... Continue Reading

Volunteers preview Ironman race in Chattanooga

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) —The well-known Ironman race is taking over the scenic city for the second time this year.

Riverfront Parkway has been lined up with tents and athletes since Thursday approaching the triathlon on Sunday.

Each year Chattanooga hosts the Ironman for athletes across the country. 

The triathlon includes a swim, bike, and run. 

“It’s definitely a unique race. It’s very supported by our community and by everybody else,” Volunteer Director Alex Christen said.

The first athletes will get in the water at 7:30 a.m. and do a 2.4 mile swim.

Once they finish the swim, they will get on their bikes and do a 116 mile bike ride. 

However, this race will be a little longer than others. 

“Normally for an Ironman it’s 112 miles. Ours is a little bit longer, so we make our athletes go a little bit further. And then they get off their bikes and they do a full marathon. So that’s a 26.2 mile run,” Christen said.

Christen added that this race in Chattanooga is a destination for many.

“This race in particular won a couple of athletes’ choice awards. As far as just being a fantastic race,” Christen said.

The race receives praise from athletes and support from the city each year.

Many individuals come out to participate or volunteer in the event.

“We have phenomenal volunteers in Chattanooga. I’ve met some really great people. We’ve formed great relationships just through this interaction at Ironman. It’s a great race, and great community spirit,” Volunteer/Captain Buck Meyer said.

The volunteers hope for a successful race on Sunday and a good turnout from the community.

“It should be a beautiful day. We’re expecting a really great turnout. Chattanooga always is. It’s going to be a really beautiful day,” Christen said.

Categories: Featured, Local News, News Team
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CPD investigate intoxicated shooting on Swan Road

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — Chattanooga Police responded to a shooting on Saturday in the 4800 block of Swan Road. The person shot call came in a little before 6 p.m. When officers arrived at the scene, they found a 24-year-old male suffering from a life-threatening gunshot wound. Hamilton County EMS responded to the scene and… ... Continue Reading

CPD respond to shooting on Windsor Street

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — Chattanooga Police responded to a person shot call on Friday night just after 10 p.m. The shooting took place on Windsor Street. While responding to the scene, officers were informed that one person arrived at a local hospital with a gunshot wound. Later, officers discovered that a second person arrived at… ... Continue Reading

Siskin and UTC Partner to Save Little Miss Mag

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- A few weeks ago, the Siskin Institute announced they were going to close their two early learning centers, leaving dozens of families without childcare. However, their fortunes have since changed. On August 3, Siskin announced Early Miss Mag Early Learning Center and the Carter Street early learning center would both be closing.… ... Continue Reading

Ten Organizations Award with Teaching Garden Grants

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- 10 organizations across Hamilton County have received a thousand dollar grant from the Hamilton County Health Department. This is a part of the Step One Program as they awarded their annual Teaching Garden Grants. The grants go towards creating community gardens that are used not only to grow food for their community… ... Continue Reading
Cleveland Police searching for fatal hit and run suspect

Cleveland Police searching for fatal hit and run suspect

Suspect vehicle. Cleveland Police CLEVELAND, Tenn. (WDEF) — A hit and run happened in Cleveland last week and now police are searching for the suspect. Cleveland Police say the hit and run resulted in a fatality. It happened Thursday, September 14 around 9:10 p.m. on South Ocoee Street. This is near Old Chattanooga Pike, police… ... Continue Reading

TECH BYTE: Is Your Child ‘Phone Ready?’

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — It’s not unusual anymore to see an elementary-age student with a cell phone.

But how do you know when they’re ready for one?

AT&T’s Laurie Starcher says parents need to factor in their child’s maturity level.

“It does seem that it’s getting younger and younger,” Starcher said. “And I think it’s really based off of, you know, what you as a parent feel is right for your kid.”

Starcher says everyone’s different.

That’s why AT&T came out with a questionnaire, to see if your child is ready for that smartphone or tablet.

“We have several ways that you can get help online. There’s a lot of different quizzes, and things that you can do to kind of help guide you to make that right decision,” Starcher said. “We do have a phone ready quiz. It’s a 10-question quiz. It’s very easy to go through online, and it really can help with understanding which type of device – whether it just be more of a basic phone, or if your child is ready to kind of step into that smartphone lifestyle. It definitely will change your lifestyle as they’re in a smartphone and kind of see the responsibilities if they’re ready to take on that next step.”

The questions were developed by pediatricians from the American Academy of Pediatrics, and AT&T.

They include “How often does your child follow rules about other media in the home such as limits on TV, tablets, or video games?”

And “How often do you trust your child’s judgment when they make decisions when you’re not there?”

“But as a child, if it’s your first smartphone, you really want to think about the type of responsibility, and the type of if we’re going to say, quote unquote, ‘freedom’ that it gives you. And that’s something that as parents, we need to make sure that we’re really conscious of.”

If you take the quiz, and based on your answers, your child falls in the ‘Ready Zone,’ AT&T recommends setting parental controls on their cell phone.

One option is the AT&T Secure Family app.

“It will allow you to track your child’s location in real time, which is wonderful, as well as block anything on the Internet that you may decide that that’s not going to be right for them,” Starcher said. “So we at AT&T have that available, but there’s lots of different ways to also help with kind of the guardrails for your children, Apple devices, Android devices, each of them do have a way that you can select privacy settings and location settings as well.”

The tech company also recommends setting expectations about the tech your child uses, and talking to them often about what they see and experience online.

To take the quiz, and check out other resources for parents, go here.

Categories: Local News, Tech Byte, Technology
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CARTA Approves Downtown Parking Rate Increase

CARTA Approves Downtown Parking Rate Increase

Screenshot 2023 09 21 At 64604 Pm

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF)- If you plan to go downtown starting in a couple of weeks, you may want to start bringing some extra change.

CARTA’s Board of Directors voted on their first downtown street parking rate increase since 2015.

Downtown street meters will now charge $1.50 per hour.

This is an increase from just $1 per hour.

CARTA says this was the least impactful raise out of three different scenarios they could have chosen as the City Council has authorized them to raise rates up to two dollars an hour if they chose.

Corey Everett, the head of CARTA’s revenue finance committee and board member said, “We’re just basically coming into what the market rate is right now and escalating up to that two dollar limit seemed to be a bit of a pill to swallow.”

CARTA says the rate increase, which is the first one since 2015, is necessary to continue funding parking upkeep and shuttle service.

They say it will increase revenue by $940,000.

They also argue despite the increase, Chattanooga’s rates are still among the lowest among regional competitors.

Brent Matthews, CARTA’S director of parking and special projects said, “Nashville is $2.25 an hour, Knoxville is already $1.50 an hour, and we’re still at a dollar right now going to $1.50.”

For Danny Smith and others who frequent the Chattanooga Southside, the decision made by the CARTA Board of Directors was not one welcomed.

Smith said, “People are coming down here to spend money in our businesses and the parking situation in Chattanooga isn’t great as it is so I think it is a little sad they’re going to do that.”

CARTA said that in a 2018 parking study conducted by the agency, downtown does have enough parking.

Some don’t feel the same way, and want to see some changes.

Smith said, “I think a pass would be great. I think maybe a more designated structure or area would be really good too. Then there’s certain streets you can’t park on unless you live there and you have a pass. I think people would just like to know where they can park, where’s it safe, and where it is not going to cost them an arm and a leg.”

It is important to note that the parking rate increase only affects Chattanooga Parking Authority meters, which are typically green.

Private lots such as Bright Base and Bird Dog are not affected by the parking rate increase and are separate from the Parking Authority.

CARTA also announced they are adding several hundred parking spots along West Main Street near Finley Stadium.

Parking will still be free after 6 p-m and on Sundays.

Categories: Chattanooga, Featured, Hamilton County, Local News
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Tennessee High School Seniors able to Apply to Colleges for Free

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Tennessee high school seniors in the process of applying for college have an opportunity to save money this week.

College applications at the majority of Tennessee schools both public and private have waived their application fees.

Some schools such as UT-Knoxville, Vanderbilt, and UTC all have waived their fees through tomorrow, while some schools have their fees through this weekend or even through the end of the month.

If students apply to multiple schools, they could save hundreds to thousands of dollars.

One high school counselor, Kelly Martin, said “It adds up quickly. Now, if someone can qualify, a lot of schools will waive application fees, so they’re very good to work with students with limited funds but it is a process to get those fees waived. It can take time, there’s forms, so this right here is just a real gift.” All Tennessee students qualify for these application fee waivers.

This is a part of Tennessee’s College Application and Exploration Month.

A link to which schools are participating is here.

Categories: College, Featured, Local News
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Chattanooga Zoo Earns Quarter Century Award

(CHATTANOOGA, TN – Press Release) – The Chattanooga Zoo at Warner Park recently earned the Quarter Century Award by the Association of Zoos and Aquariums (AZA). This award acknowledges that the Chattanooga Zoo has reached the 25-year milestone of AZA accreditation. The Chattanooga Zoo is honored to be recognized for its commitment to maintaining the highest… ... Continue Reading
Jasmine Pace autopsy reveals 60 stab wounds

Jasmine Pace autopsy reveals 60 stab wounds


CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) — The Hamilton County Medical Examiner’s Office released the autopsy report for Jasmine Pace on Wednesday.

In that report, it revealed that she had 60 stab wounds. Those wounds were on her head, neck, upper back and right arm.

Additionally, the coroner’s report stated that authorities found Pace’s body in a fetal position, wrapped in three trash bags and inside a suitcase near Suck Creek Road. This was in December of 2022.

It stated that her right and left ankles were handcuffed to her right arm.

The report shows that Pace had no drugs in her system at the time of her death. She did not have any alcohol in her system either.

Pace was 22 years old at the time of her death.

Authorities charged Jason Chen with the murder of Jasmine Pace in November, and a jury indicted him in March.

Chen’s hearings have been pushed back multiple times.

Recently, his defense attorney argued problems with the case. But the indictment still stood.

According to the Hamilton County Jail’s website, Chen is scheduled to appear in court next on October 4.

Categories: Chattanooga, Crime, Featured, Local News
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Pedestrian fatally struck by car in Rock Spring

Pedestrian fatally struck by car in Rock Spring

US Highway 27 at GA Highway 95. Google Maps  ROCK SPRING, Ga. (WDEF) — Early Thursday morning, a pedestrian died after being hit by a car in Rock Spring. According to the Georgia State Patrol (GSP), it happened just before 7 a.m. at the intersection of U.S. Highway 27 and Georgia Highway 95. They identified… ... Continue Reading

Hazmat Spills Shut Down I-24 Twice in One Day

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – Chattanooga first responders stayed extra-busy on Wednesday. (9/20/23) The Chattanooga Fire Department issued this release around 10 p.m.

Chattanooga Fire and other agencies responded to a second hazmat incident Wednesday night on Interstate 24. The first incident involved a chemical spill involving organic peroxide at the Germantown Road exit. Once emergency crews cleared that scene, they were called to a wreck at 8PM on I-24W at the 4th Avenue exit after a van collided with a tractor trailer transporting industrial floor cleaner, prompting another hazmat response and forcing the temporary closure of the interstate in both directions. It appears that a Chevy Astro van came up the wrong way on 4th Avenue exit ramp and pulled in front of the tractor trailer, causing a head-on collision. Due to the patient being pinned in the vehicle and their position in the wreckage, firefighters performed a complicated extrication operation. The patient was cut out of the mangled car by skilled firefighters and then transported to the hospital with serious injuries. His condition is unknown at this time. He was the only passenger inside the van. The driver of the tractor trailer was transported to the hospital with leg pain. A small leak was coming from the tractor trailer of a product called ZEP, which is a floor stripping material. A private environmental company is handling the cleanup. I-24E has reopened for traffic. Traffic on I-24W is being diverted down the off-ramp and back up the on-ramp to take traffic around the wreck site for the time being as law enforcement authorities conduct their investigation. Thanks to our Mutual Aid partners for providing coverage at our fire halls while CFD personnel were on this scene.

Categories: Chattanooga, Local News, Trending News
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Weather Update: Thursday Morning – September 20, 2023

Weather Update: Thursday Morning – September 20, 2023

Overnight: Clear. Cool. Lows: mid to upper 50’s. Winds: Light/Variable.

Thursday: Sunny. Mild. Low humidity. Highs: upper 70’s to lower 80’s. Winds: SE 5 mph.

Overnight: Clear. Cool. Lows: low/mid 60’s. Winds: SE @ 5, then becoming light.

Friday/Last Day Of Summer: Sunny. Mild. Low humidity. Highs: low/mid 80’s. Winds: SE 5 mph.

Overnight: Clear. Cool. Lows: low/mid 60’s. Winds: S @ 5 MPH, then light.

Z Svr Ace 2

None of any note or strength expected for the next several days.

Cpc 6 10 Day Temp 1607517104855

Cpc 6 10 Day Precip 1607517257201

The Climate Prediction Center 6-10 Day Outlook for Saturday, September 23nd – Wednesday, September 27th, features near to above normal temperatures and slightly above normal precipitation through this period.


Z Paws For Effect

Got #weatherpix to share for our @WestShoreHome #WeatherWindow #PictureOfTheDay? E-mail them to [email protected].

 Make sure you & your family stay in touch with us. Remember the Storm Team 12 app can always bring you the latest weather alerts for your location as well as Titan Radar. Download it for free from your app store – just search WDEF Weather”.

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The best time to prepare for severe weather is when nothing weather-wise is going on.  Learn more about programming your weather alert radio with WDEF-TV News 12.

Categories: Featured, Local News, Weather Update
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Weather Update: Friday Morning – September 22, 2023

Weather Update: Friday Morning – September 22, 2023

WDEF-TV News 12 Weather Forecast Overnight: Clear. Cool. Lows: low/mid 60’s. Winds: NE @ 5 MPH, then light. Friday/Last Day Of Summer: Sunny. Mild. Low humidity. Highs: low/mid 80’s. Winds: NE 5 mph. Overnight: Clear. Cool. Lows: low/mid 60’s. Winds: S @ 5 MPH, then light. Saturday/First Day Of Autumn: Sunny. Mild. Low humidity. Highs:… ... Continue Reading

Hamilton County Coalition hosts recovery event at Miller Park

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. (WDEF) – The Hamilton County Coalition hosted their first annual Recovery Happens Together event Wednesday morning at Miller Park. Local organizations gathered to celebrate people who are in recovery.  “We are celebrating our partners, those people that are in recovery, our clients and we are just showing them that recovery is a great… ... Continue Reading
Homes evacuated as precaution during East Ridge hazmat response

Homes evacuated as precaution during East Ridge hazmat response


Cleanup crews are working to stabilize the hazardous cargo on I-24 eastbound. I-24 westbound is now reopen.

The Chattanooga Fire Department says an organic peroxide spill happened around 4 p.m. on Wednesday.

A driver noticed a FedEx tractor trailer had fluid leaking out of the back of the truck and the driver called 911.

Authorities closed down the interstate and evacuated a 1,000-foot radius around the truck as a precaution.

A tote carrying the organic peroxide had a pinhole leak.

Firefighters say the truck was carrying a mixed load. It was carrying other chemicals on the trailer as well, but they were not affected.

Marion Environmental assisted multiple fire and police crews in cleaning up this scene. Authorities say they are transferring the organic chemical to a new tote for further transport.

Authorities evacuated 38 homes and one apartment complex as a precaution, CFD said.

Evacuated residents went to the Brainerd Rec Center, which is staffed by American Red Cross.

No one was injured as a result of this incident.

Fire officials say they are working to reopen I-24 eastbound as soon as possible.


Hazmat I24

EAST RIDGE, Tenn. (WDEF) — Another hazmat situation happened in East Ridge on Wednesday, according to the Chattanooga Fire Department.

A FedEx box truck leaked hazardous materials onto the Germantown Road off-ramp from I-24 eastbound, firefighters said.

Authorities shut down I-24 eastbound at 4th Avenue. They shut down I-24 westbound at the 24/75 split as well.

So far, they have not reported any injuries.

However, first responders evacuated homes in the nearby area.

The Chattanooga and East Ridge Fire Departments undertook a hazmat response.

The fire department said they were still working to find out what those hazardous materials were, just before 5 p.m.

Categories: East Ridge, Featured, Local News
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