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Harlan man wins $10k in Powerball drawing

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A Harlan man won a good chunk of change from the Iowa Lottery Powerball drawing last month.  The Iowa Lottery says Wesley Clay checked his Powerball tickets from drawings held in October and discovered he won $10,000. Clay’s winning Powerball ticket was from the October 31st drawing. He told the lottery he normally throws the tickets in his car and then checks them all randomly.

Clay matched four white balls and the Powerball from the October 31st drawing to win the prize of $10,000. His ticket was purchased at the Taylor Quik-Pik on 23rd Street in Harlan. He claimed his prize Monday at the Iowa Lottery’s regional office in Council Bluffs. Clay and his wife Brianne say their lottery winnings will be put into a college fund for their children.

The estimated jackpot for this Saturday’s Powerball is $50 million.

(Joel McCall/KNOD)

More info. released on Cass County accidents

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Cass County Sheriff’s Office has released additional details concerning two accidents which occurred during icy driving conditions, Thursday. Officials say at around 12:25-p.m., a two-vehicle road-condition-related accident occurred on Interstate 80 at the 60 mile marker. A 2002 Toyota owned and driven by 34-year old Lillian Phillips, of Lincoln, NE, was eastbound on I-80 when the vehicle went out of control on the icy bridge and slid across the median just past the bridge, striking a westbound 2001 Peterbilt semi driven by 33-year old Donald Nichols,  of Nebraska.Phillips was transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital by Medivac ambulance. Her 20-month-old son was also transferred to CCMH by Medivac and subsequently transferred to Children’s Hospital in Omaha. Nichols was not injured. Damage from the crash amounted to $18,000.

The second accident happened moments later (12:30-p.m.), on the Marne Road (Highway 83).  Officials say a 1999 Ford Ranger owned and driven by 66-year old Dennis Holtz, of Walnut, was westbound on Marne Road when his vehicle slid off the roadway and went into the south ditch. Holtz was transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital via Medivac. Damage to his vehicle is estimated at $5000.

 

Forecast calls for number of Thanksgiving travelers to drop due to economic worries

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Many Iowans have a four-day weekend coming up with plans to pack up the car and take a road trip to visit far-away family for a Thanksgiving feast. Gail Weinholzer, spokeswoman for Triple-A-Iowa, says the single busiest day to be on the road is next Wednesday, as it’ll be one of the most crowded days of the year on our highways and interstates.  “That’s the most heavily traveled day of the Thanksgiving holiday,” Weinholzer says. “We’ll have at least 43.4-million Americans traveling at least 50 miles or more and the majority of those folks, 39-million, will be traveling by personal automobile.”

The predicted number of travelers is down by about 600-thousand from last Thanksgiving, according to the motor club’s survey, and that’s following a year-long trend. “Memorial Day was down 1%, 4th of July was down 1%, Thanksgiving is down 1.5%,” Weinholzer says. “The exception was Labor Day as the only holiday that was actually up and that was up about 4.2%.” While gasoline prices are relatively low in Iowa compared to the rest of the nation, she says the travel forecast is still down, slightly.

“People are just a little concerned about the sluggish economy, it’s not recovering as quickly or as well as they’d hoped,” Weinholzer says. “They’re just backing off a bit of some of their holiday travel plans.” Triple-A says gas prices in Iowa are averaging three-oh-seven a gallon, well below the national average of three-22. Both averages are the cheapest of the year and they’re expected to continue falling for the next several weeks. Davenport has Iowa’s cheapest gas, averaging two-92 a gallon.

(Radio Iowa)

8AM Newscast 11-22-2013

News, Podcasts

November 22nd, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

3 northwest Iowa firefighters injured at blaze

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

ORANGE CITY, Iowa (AP) – Authorities say three firefighters have suffered minor injuries while putting out a house fire in northwest Iowa.  Sioux County authorities say the fire was reported about 2:05 p.m. Thursday in Orange City.

Investigators suspect the fire was started by a malfunction in a radiant heat system. The blaze was difficult to battle because it was burning in the house attic.  The residents weren’t home. The three firefighters were taken to Orange City Hospital for treatment and then released.

7AM Newscast 11-22-2013

News, Podcasts

November 22nd, 2013 by Chris Parks

w/ Ric Hanson

Head-on crash on Highway 30 kills Dunlap man

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

A head-on crash Thursday night in Harrison County has claimed the life of a Dunlap man. The Iowa State Patrol says 75-year old Rex Rains, of Dunlap, was wearing his seat belt but died from injuries he suffered, at the scene of the crash on Highway 30, about two and one-half miles southwest of Woodbine. Officials say Rains’ 2003 Dodge Neon was traveling west on Highway 30 at around 9:40-p.m., when the car left to the center of the 100-percent ice and snow covered road and into the path of an eastbound 2014 Mack semi, driven by 47-year old Scott Grandstaff, of Omaha. The truck was registered to Farner Bocken, out of Carroll.

After the car and semi collided head-on, both vehicles came to rest in the south ditch of Highway 30. The accident remains under investigation by the Iowa State Patrol and Harrison County Sheriff’s Office.

2 accidents in Audubon County, Thursday afternoon

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

No injuries were reported following two separate accidents Thursday afternoon, in Audubon County. The Sheriff’s Department says the first happened at around 12:40-p.m. on Pheasant Avenue, just south of 210th Street, when a 1995 Ford tandem truck pulling a 1976 Puma tandem axle trailer and driven by 59-year old Russell William Murray, of Audubon, went out of control on the ice covered road. The trailer jackknifed and rolled into the west ditch. The trailer broke its hitch and became separated from the truck. Both vehicles were loaded with lime. Damage was estimated at $5,000.

The second accident happened at around 1:30-p.m. and involved vehicles driven by 18-year old David Raymond Ratigan, of Panama and 34-year old Bret James Hildebrand, of Coon Rapids. Sheriff’s officials say both drivers were traveling west on Littlefield Drive, with Hildebrand traveling slowly due to the icy conditions. Ratigan’s 2002 Dodge rear-ended the 2013 Hino van driven by Hildebrand near the intersection with Goldfinch Avenue, causing $4,000 damage altogether.  The van was registered to Prenger Furniture Inc., of Carroll.

Roads turn dangerous and deadly Thursday afternoon

News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Road conditions that quickly deteriorated Thursday afternoon with the arrival of freezing rain and sleet caused numerous accidents in western Iowa, including one that claimed the life of a Wisconsin man. The Iowa State Patrol reports 64-year old Ronald Wahl, of Edgerton, WI., died in the crash that happened at around Noon on westbound Interstate 80 in Pottawattamie County, just south of the -680 split. Officials say after Wahl lost control of the 1999 Chevy Silverado pickup he was driving, the pickup entered the ditch and rolled several times. Wahl, who was not wearing a seat belt, was ejected from the vehicle and died at the scene.
Accidents in Cass County prompted officials from both the City of Atlantic and Cass County Emergency Management to warn people to stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary. During the noon hour, there was a report of an accident east of Atlantic on the Highway 6 bridge involving a pickup and trailer, and a multiple vehicle accident on Interstate 80 at the 60-mile marker westbound. No injuries were reported in connection with the Highway 6 accident, and none were immediately reported in association with the I-80 crash, but a woman staying at a motel near the Highway 71/I-80 interchange later reported she was suffering from chest pain as a result of air bag deployment, several hours after the crash.Another accident was reported on Highway 83 at 12:30-p.m. A vehicle rolled into the ditch at a location two-miles west of Marne. Dispatch reports said one person was trapped in the vehicle at the time. Accident also were reported on I-80 westbound near the Shelby exit, I-80 eastbound north of Atlantic at the Olive Street exit, and I-80 eastbound near Avoca. Those incidents caused the roadways to be blocked for several hours. Highway 34 near Creston was blocked for several hours in both directions, due to a jackknifed semi. Another accident had traffic blocked on Interstate 29 near Council Bluffs at around exit 52.

Winter weather advisories were issued for southwest and western Iowa between 11:30-a.m. and Noon on Thursday, just before the accident reports starting piling up. Area school districts, including CAM, Griswold,  Council Bluffs, Lewis Central, Treynor, Underwood and Riverside dismissed classes early or  canceled some or all their after-school activities..

The Iowa Department of Roads said it is important for motorists to evaluate whether trips during poor driving conditions are necessary before heading out on the roads.

Second year of Farm Bill failure looms

Ag/Outdoor, News

November 22nd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

An informal, end-of-this-week deadline to get a Farm Bill draft approved by a team of congressional negotiators will not be met, throwing into question whether the Farm Bill can be be passed in the House by year’s end. U.S. Ag Secretary Tom Vilsack says congress can act quickly “when there’s a will and there’s a way.” “We have to have a clear indication from congress that this is going to get done,” Vilsack says. “Obviously there are some who are skeptical about that given the fact that we have already seen one year with inaction.”

A Farm Bill was due to be passed by this time last year, but congress passed a one-year extension. Vilsack says inaction again this year means his agency will begin instituting the federal farm policies of the 1940s — which are far more costly.”No one wants to do that,” Vilsack says, “and the best and simplest way to avoid it having to be done — at whatever point in time — is to have congress finish its work by the end of the year.” After this week, congress will be in recess for the Thanksgiving holiday. In December, the House will be in session for just two weeks and the Senate for slightly longer before adjourning for the year. Without passage of a five-year Farm Bill, Vilsack says farmers and ranchers are delaying key decisions.

“Doesn’t know how to decide whether to expand, to buy an additional piece of equipment because he or she does not know what the programs are going to be,” Vilsack says. “There is no question that farmers have taken a ‘wait and see’ attitude to further decisions that could help spur not only their own operation, but spur the economy generally.” According to a report released Thursday by the White House Council on Economic Advisors, agriculture accounts for nearly five percent of the Gross Domestic Product and one in 12 jobs in the U.S. are in agriculture.

“A compelling report that makes the argument on a multitude of levels why it’s important for the rest of the country and all of America to see congress finish its work (on the Farm Bill),” Vilsack says. The chairman of the House Ag Committee emerged from a meeting on Thursday saying anything is possible, but it “will be challenging” for Farm Bill negotiators to wrap up their work and have a bill ready for a vote in the House by December 13th.

There are no plans for the House-Senate conference commitee working out the details of a hoped-for Farm Bill compromise to meet today (Friday). Senator Tom Harkin and Congressman Steve King serve on the committee, but neither was involved in this week’s negotiations between the four top lawmakers on the panel.

(Radio Iowa)