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(Podcast) KJAN 8-a.m. News, 8/11/2016

News, Podcasts

August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

More area and State news from KJAN News Director Ric Hanson.


(Podcast) KJAN Morning News & funeral report, 8/11/2016

News, Podcasts

August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The area’s top news at 7:06-a.m., w/KJAN News Director Ric Hanson


Bluffs man arrested after Thu. morning pursuit


August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Council Bluffs Police arrested a man on Eluding, Reckless Driving and OWI/1st offense charges, following a pursuit that began at around 12:30-a.m. today (Thursday). 59-year old David Lanegan, of Council Bluffs, was arrested after the vehicle he was driving became stuck as he tried to drive through a median.

The incident began when officers initiated a pursuit on a vehicle after it nearly struck a police cruiser and was driving erratic in the area of N. 16th St and Avenue F, in Council Bluffs. Officials say Lanegan was suspected of being intoxicated.

He failed to yield for officers and continued north on N. 16th St onto Interstate29 north, where the vehicle attempted to drive through the median and got stuck. Lanegan was booked into Pottawattamie County Corrections on the charges mentioned.

Other than damage done to the suspect vehicle upon it attempting to drive through the median, no injuries or property damage are believed to have occurred.

Sioux City man charged with arson in fire that injured 11


August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A Sioux City man is jailed in Clarion after he allegedly set a house on fire early Tuesday morning. 21-year old Luis Antonio Huerta Valdez is charged with first-degree arson after setting fire to the house in the 1000 block of South Commercial in Eagle Grove. When police and firefighters arrived, they assisted the residents of the house as they jumped from second story windows.

A total of 11 people, including two police officers and a firefighter, were transported to area hospitals for treatment of injuries ranging from smoke inhalation to severe burns. Bond for Huerta Valdez was set at $100,000. The State Fire Marshal’s office has been called in to assist Eagle Grove authorities to further investigate the cause.

(Radio Iowa)

2 arrests in Red Oak, Wednesday


August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Red Oak Police say two people were arrested on separate charges, Wednesday. At around 10-p.m., 22-year old Wyatt Kane Bailey, of Red Oak, was arrested on a valid Montgomery County warrant for Probation Violation on an original charge of OWI/1st offense. Bailey was being held in the Montgomery County Jail on a $5,000 cash bond. And, Wednesday evening, Red Oak Police arrested 68-year old Raymond M. Olsen, of Red Oak, for Public Intoxication. His bond was set at $300.

State Ag Secretary says presidentidal candidates’ stance on trade not encouraging

Ag/Outdoor, News

August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

While the Democratic and Republican presidential nominees have both blasted proposed trade agreements, Iowa’s top ag official says trade is essential to agriculture and especially to Iowa agriculture. Iowa Ag Secretary Bill Northey says he’s concerned when he hears Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump speak out against trade deals. Northey says the Pacific Trade Pact would be a boon to agriculture.

“TPP is another one of those, Trans Pacific Partnership, with a dozen of us around the Pacific Ocean that would be very beneficial to agriculture,” Northey says. “It’s very easy to come out opposed to those agreements and talk about the problems without appreciating the benefits.” Iowa is the top pork-producing state and Northey says the export of Iowa pork products is a great example of how agriculture benefits from world trade.

“We ship about a quarter of all our pork production overseas,” Northey says. “We’ll ship maybe the majority of some of the products like pork feet or pork hearts or other kinds of things, and we’ll keep those things we value, like pork chops and bacon.” Northey says many of Iowa’s key ag products are being shipped out of the country. “Excess of 40% of our soybeans are exported, a lot of those go to China,” Northey says. “It’s very important that we retain those markets. That’s true of distillers grain and that’s true of beef and corn exports. These are all very important and our markets would be severely impacted if we lost some of those markets.”

On Monday, Iowa entered into a partnership of memorandum of cooperation with India. Northey says India doesn’t constitute a major market for Iowa agricultural goods at the moment, but he believes with time, that will change. India has a growing population of 1.2 billion.

(Radio Iowa)

It’s 8/11 or 811 Day. Remember to call before you dig.


August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

This is August 11th, what’s also known as 8-1-1 Day, as Iowa homeowners are reminded about the three-digit phone number they’re required to call in advance before doing any digging in the yard. Ben Booth, spokesman for Iowa One Call, says calling 8-1-1 can help keep you safe and besides, it’s the law to call first.

Booth says, “The reason you do that is so that when you’re digging or doing any kind of excavating, you don’t come in contact with something underground, something you don’t want to hit like a natural gas pipeline or a service line, or a broadband or fiber optics cable or even a high voltage cable.” Failure to comply with the law may mean you’ll face expensive fines and civil penalties if you cause a disruption in service. More importantly, if you don’t call 8-1-1 in advance, you could be badly hurt in an incident that also places the public, property and environment in harm’s way.

“You don’t want to dig into a natural gas line or an electric line, you don’t want to contaminate your city’s water systems,” Booth says. “Here’s the deal, it’s all free. It’s a free notification, a free call or you can go online and do a ticket for free, and the service itself, the actual locating and marking of underground facilities is also free.” Most people don’t dash off and buy trees to plant on a whim and Booth says you -do- need to plan ahead.

“You must make the notification at least 48 hours in advance of digging and that excludes Saturdays, Sundays and legal holidays,” Booth says. “If you’re going to do work on the weekend, make sure you call early in the week, your yard will be marked, you’ll know where to avoid and everything’s good.” Learn more at: www.iowaonecall.com

(Radio Iowa)

Iowa early News Headlines: Thursday, 8/11/2016


August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press at 3:35 a.m. CDT

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An aide says Iowa Gov. Terry Branstad is acting as an adviser to Republican presidential nominee Donald Trump on agricultural issues. The Des Moines Register reports Branstad spokesman Ben Hammes released a statement Wednesday saying Branstad, “will be offering his advice on important issues to Iowa, none more important than renewable fuels.” Branstad has been an enthusiastic supporter of the Republican nominee. His son heads Trump’s Iowa campaign.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An Iowa agency has approved changes to administrative rules regarding water pollution that two groups say will weaken environmental protections. The Environmental Law & Policy Center and the Iowa Environmental Council say the Iowa Department of Natural Resources scaled back protections to Iowa’s waterways by changing its anti-degradation standards on Wednesday. Those standards help regulate how pollution is added to the water. DNR says the changes will clarify the process.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Hillary Clinton says Trump’s words could have “tremendous consequences,” calls on Republicans to support her campaign.

IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) — An internal investigation into a national jackpot-fixing scandal has concluded that a single former lottery employee was responsible for any drawings that were manipulated. The report for the Multi-State Lottery Association found that the group’s former security director, Eddie Tipton, worked independently to commit any fraud without help from current or former employees. But investigators also said they failed to determine how he pulled it off and found no smoking gun of criminal activity.

American Drivers Aren’t Securing Their Loads on the Road:study shows more than 200k crashes are caused by road debris


August 11th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

More than 200,000 crashes involved debris on U.S. roadways during the past four years, according to a new study released by the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety. Road debris has resulted in approximately 39,000 injuries and more than 500 deaths between 2011 and 2014. AAA is calling for drivers to properly secure their loads to prevent dangerous debris.

AAA researchers examined common characteristics of crashes involving road debris and found that:

  • Nearly 37 percent of all deaths in road debris crashes resulted from the driver swerving to avoid hitting an object. Over-correcting at the last minute to avoid debris can increase a driver’s risk of losing control of their vehicle and make a bad situation worse.
  • More than one in three crashes involving debris occur between 10:00 a.m. and 3:59 p.m., a time when many people are on the road hauling or moving heavy items like furniture or construction equipment.
  • Debris-related crashes are much more likely to occur on Interstate highways. Driving at high speeds increases the risk for vehicle parts to become detached or cargo to fall onto the roadway.Road-Debris-and-Crashes-Infographic-1

Jurek Grabowski, research director for the AAA Foundation for Traffic Safety, said “This new report shows that road debris can be extremely dangerous but all of these crashes are preventable. Drivers can easily save lives and prevent injuries by securing their loads and taking other simple precautions to prevent items from falling off the vehicle.”

About two-thirds of debris-related crashes are the result of items falling from a vehicle due to improper maintenance and unsecured loads. Crashes involving vehicle related-debris increased 40 percent since 2001, when the Foundation first studied the issue. The most common types of vehicle debris are:

  • Parts becoming detached from a vehicle (tires, wheels, etc.) and falling onto the roadway
  • Unsecured cargo like furniture, appliances and other items falling onto the roadway
  • Tow trailers becoming separated and hitting another vehicle or landing on the roadway

Drivers can decrease their chances of being involved in a road debris crash by:

  • Maintaining Their Vehicles: Drivers should have their vehicles checked regularly by trained mechanics. Badly worn or under-inflated tires often suffer blowouts that can leave pieces of tire on the roadway. Exhaust systems and the hardware that attach to the vehicle can also rust and corrode, causing mufflers and other parts to drag and eventually break loose. Potential tire and exhaust system problems can easily be spotted by trained mechanics as part of the routine maintenance performed during every oil change.
  • Securing Vehicle Loads: When moving or towing furniture, it is important to make sure all items are secured. To properly secure a load, drivers should:
    1. Tie down load with rope, netting or straps
    2. Tie large objects directly to the vehicle or trailer
    3. Cover the entire load with a sturdy tarp or netting
    4. Don’t overload the vehicle
    5. Always double check load to make sure a load is secure

Currently every state has laws that make it illegal for items to fall from a vehicle while on the road. Most states’ penalties result in fines ranging from $10-$5,000, with at least 16 states listing jail as a possible punishment for offenders. AAA encourages drivers to educate themselves about specific road debris laws in their state. Drivers should also practice defensive driving techniques while on the road to prevent debris related crashes from occurring.

William Van Tassel, Manager of Driver Training Programs for AAA, says “Continually searching the road at least 12 to 15 seconds ahead can help drivers be prepared in the case of debris. Always try to maintain open space on at least one side of your vehicle in case you need to steer around an object. If you see you are unable to avoid debris on the roadway, safely reduce your speed as much as possible before making contact.”

AAA also recommends that drivers avoid tailgating and remain alert while on the road.  Additional tips on defensive driving and how to report road debris to the proper authorities are available online at AAA.com/PreventRoadDebris.

Atlantic School Board to leave cell phone policy alone – no blanket policy needed


August 10th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic School Board will leave it up to the Administrators for each of the District’s Schools to determine what their cell phone policies for students and teachers will be. Discussion on the subject lasted for about 15-minutes.

The decision not to have a “Blanket policy” for all the district’s buildings they said is really not necessary, for several reasons. Among them, each school in the district already has a handbook spelling out the policy for students, and how those policies will be enforced.

Schuler Principal James Northwick said “As we’re thinking about cell phone policies, and we have One-to-One computers, I question what a kid’s gonna do on a computer that they can’t do on a cell phone or vice-versa.” It was pointed out that those 1:1 laptops have the capability to send text messages to phones, and much more. Northwick said with regard to cell phones, if they take them away from students at the start of the school day, they might as well take away the laptops, too. That, he said, “Would be a huge step back.”

School Board President Josh McLaren, who is also a Cass County Sheriff’s Deputy, said policing cell phones would be as fruitless as stopping everyone who travels more than 55 miles per hour on Highway 6 between Atlantic and Wiota. McLaren said they don’t want to become “Cell phone cops.” He said a lot of the concerns from comments people have made on social media, is that cell phones should not be used in the classroom. That’s already a rule in the student handbook.

Board member Kristy Pellet, speaking with regard to students’ personal responsibility, said she’s concerned if the students’ phone is taken away for eight-hours per day, the first thing they’ll do when they get in their vehicles, is to be looking at and sending text messages, while they’re driving. “Allowing our administrators to set up a policy that works for their building, is what’s important,” she said. None of the high school teachers, she said have ever mentioned cell phones are a problem in the classroom. She said it needs to be made clear at the beginning of the school year, that cell phones are not to be used in the classroom, for anything other than teacher approved educational purposes.

Assistant High School Principal Matt Alexander backed-up that assertion, saying that that had gone from 127 student referrals to the High School principal’s official six-years ago, with regard to the use of electronic devices, to 38 students last year. Alexander said “We are improving. [But] Is there more room for improvement? Absolutely.”

School Board member Dr. Keith Swanson summed-up the opinion of the Board “I get the feeling the Board wants to leave this up to the administrators, for the administrators to make a rule for their school, to say what’s going on in their school, and then enforce it.”