KJAN News

KJAN News can be heard:
Monday – Saturday at 6:30 am, 7:05 pm, 8:00 am, 9:00 am, 12:20 pm, 12:40 pm, 3:05 pm & 5:05 pm

Keep up-to-date with Fox News Radio, Radio Iowa,  Brownfield & the Iowa Agribusiness Networks!
Check our Program Schedule Page for times!

More layoffs & cancelled training for Iowa Nat’l. Guard due to gov’t shutdown

News

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Iowa National Guard spokesman, Col. Greg Hapgood announced Thursday night, that as a result of the continuing federal government shutdown, additional actions will be executed by the Iowa National Guard.

Beginning Friday, Oct. 4th, 16 full-time State of Iowa employees working for the Iowa National Guard will be temporarily laid off for up to 20 days. An additional 95 State employees will be temporarily laid off for up to 30 days beginning Oct. 18th. Currently, more than 1,000 full-time federal technicians of the Iowa National Guard are on  furlough  and will remain furloughed until the shutdown is resolved.

Furloughed/laid off employees will not receive pay for the duration of the furlough, may not be in a paid leave status, but will retain and accrue benefits. Approximately 1,000 full-time employees remain on duty for the Iowa National Guard, including Active Guard and Reserve (AGR) military personnel and federal technicians.

In addition, the 185th Air Refueling Wing in Sioux City has cancelled drill scheduled for Oct. 5-6. Training and drill for all other Iowa National Guard units and personnel scheduled for Oct. 1-10 was previously cancelled. Rescheduling of all cancelled training assemblies will be announced at a later date after the shutdown has ended.

The Iowa National Guard will continue to provide periodic updates as this situation unfolds.

Severe Thunderstorm Watch in effect until 5-a.m. Friday

News, Weather

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The National Weather Service at 8:20-p.m. Thursday, issued SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WATCH #537, which is in effect until 5-a.m. Friday. Area Counties included in the SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WATCH: ADAIR  ADAMS  AUDUBON CARROLL  CASS  CRAWFORD DALLAS   FREMONT HARRISON GUTHRIE   MADISON   MILLS  MONTGOMERY PAGE  POTTAWATTAMIE   RINGGOLD   SAC  SHELBY  TAYLOR AND UNION.

PRIMARY THREATS INCLUDE…
NUMEROUS LARGE HAIL EVENTS LIKELY WITH A FEW VERY LARGE HAIL    EVENTS TO 2.5 INCHES IN DIAMETER POSSIBLE;  SEVERAL DAMAGING WIND GUSTS TO 70 MPH POSSIBLE; A FEW TORNADOES POSSIBLE

THE SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WATCH AREA IS APPROXIMATELY ALONG AND 140 STATUTE MILES EAST AND WEST OF A LINE FROM 10 MILES WEST    SOUTHWEST OF FALLS CITY NEBRASKA TO 70 MILES NORTH OF DES MOINES,  IOWA.

A SEVERE THUNDERSTORM WATCH MEANS CONDITIONS ARE FAVORABLE FOR THE DEVELOPMENT OF SEVERE STORMS IN AND CLOSE TO THE WATCH AREA. PERSONS IN THESE AREAS SHOULD BE ON THE LOOKOUT FOR THREATENING WEATHER CONDITIONS AND LISTEN FOR LATER STATEMENTS AND POSSIBLE WARNINGS. SEVERE THUNDERSTORMS CAN AND OCCASIONALLY DO PRODUCE TORNADOES.

Sunnyside Tennis Court ribbon cutting ceremony set for Sunday

News, Sports

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The City of Atlantic’s Parks and Recreation Department Board of Directors will formally open the newly resurfaced tennis courts at Sunnyside Park Sunday afternoon, with a ribbon cutting ceremony. The public event takes place at 1-p.m., weather permitting, and is expected to last about 45-minutes.

The program will include dignitaries from the United States Tennis Association, and a brief explanation of the 10 and under Tennis Program that will be in place during next summer’s park and rec tennis program.

Accident under investigation in Montgomery County

News

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County are investigating a property damage accident that occurred Thursday afternoon. The Sheriff’s Department says a 2004 Nissan Sentra owned and operated by 21-year old Chelsee L. Morris, of rural Red Oak, was traveling west on 130th Street, a gravel road, when Morris overcorrected and lost control of the vehicle, about 1.5-miles east of Highway 48.

The car entered the south ditch and came to rest on its side. The accident happened at around 2:50-p.m. Damage to the vehicle was estimated at $4,000. No injuries were reported, and no citations were issued while the accident remains under investigation.

Potential for Severe Thunderstorm Watch tonight

News, Weather

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Storm Chasing Network (http://iowachase.com) reports the Severe Storm Prediction Center (SPC) is currently watching parts of southwestern Iowa for the probability of issuing a severe thunderstorm watch.45571_632271446804115_1811480831_n It appears more robust storm initiation will occur over the next hour or two across south central Iowa. A large hail and perhaps an isolated tornado threat may develop over the next several hours as attempts are made for storms to increase in coverage and intensity across central Iowa

Oct. is Fire Prevention Month

News

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa State Fire Marshal Division is working to remind everyone that home fires are more prevalent in winter than in any other season. This is due in part to an increase in cooking and heating fires. Holiday decorations and winter storms that can interrupt electrical service and cause people to turn to alternative heating sources also contribute to the increased risk of fire in winter.
Winter fires can be prevented! The following fire safety tips can help you maintain a fire-safe home this winter season.

Wood Stoves
Wood stoves and fireplaces are becoming a very common heat source in homes. Careful attention to safety can minimize their fire hazard.
To use them safely:

  • Be sure the fireplace or stove is installed properly.  Wood stoves should have adequate clearance (36”) from combustible surfaces and proper floor support and protection.
  • Wood stoves should be of good quality, solid construction and design, and should be laboratory tested.
  • Have the chimney inspected annually and cleaned if necessary, especially if it has not been used for some time.
  • Do not use flammable liquids to start or accelerate any fire.
  • Keep a glass or metal screen in front of the fireplace opening, to prevent embers or sparks from jumping out, unwanted material from going in, and help prevent the possibility of burns to occupants.
  • The stove should be burned hot twice a day for 15-30 minutes to reduce the amount of creosote buildup.
  • Don’t use excessive amounts of paper to build roaring fires in fireplaces. It is possible to ignite creosote in the chimney by overbuilding the fire.
  • Never burn charcoal indoors. Burning charcoal can give off lethal amounts of carbon monoxide.
  • Keep flammable materials away from your fireplace mantel. A spark from the fireplace could easily ignite these materials.
  • Before you go to sleep, be sure your fireplace fire is out. NEVER close your damper with hot ashes in the fireplace. A closed damper will help the fire to heat up again and will force toxic carbon monoxide into the house.
  • If synthetic logs are used, follow the directions on the package. NEVER break a synthetic log apart to quicken the fire or use more than one log at a time.  They often burn unevenly, releasing higher levels of carbon monoxide.

 Campfire Safety

  • Build campfires where they will not spread, away from dry grass and leaves.
  • Do not let children start the fire or add logs or other fuel to the fire.
  • Never accelerate or start fires with gasoline.
  • Keep campfires small, and don’t let them get out of hand.
  • Keep plenty of water and a shovel around to douse the fire when you’re done. Stir it and douse it again with water.
  • Never leave campfires unattended and keep children away from the fire.

Furnace Heating

  • It is important that you have your furnace inspected to ensure that it is in good working condition.
  • Be sure all furnace controls and emergency shutoffs are in proper working condition.
  • Leave furnace repairs to qualified specialists.  Do not attempt repairs yourself unless you are qualified. Inspect the walls and ceiling near the furnace and along the chimney line. If the wall is hot or discolored, additional pipe insulation or clearance may be required.
  • Check the flue pipe and pipe seams. Are they well supported and free of holes and cracks? Soot along or around seams may be an indicator of a leak.
  • Is the chimney solid, with cracks or loose bricks?  All unused flue openings should be sealed with solid masonry.
  • Keep trash and other combustibles away from the heating system.

Other Fire Safety Tips

  • Never discard hot ashes inside or near the home. Place them in a metal container outside and well away from the house.
  • Never use a range or an oven as a supplemental heating device. Not only is it a safety hazard, it can be a source of potentially toxic fumes.
  • If you use an electric heater, be sure not to overload the circuit. Only use extension cords which have the necessary rating to carry an amp load.

TIP: Choose an extension cord the same size or larger than the appliance electrical cord.

  • Avoid using electrical space heaters in bathrooms or other areas where they may come in contact with water.
  • Frozen water pipes? Never try to thaw them with a blow torch or other open flame, otherwise the pipe could conduct the heat and ignite the wall structure inside the wall space. Use hot water or a laboratory tested device such as a hand held dryer for thawing.
  • If windows are used as emergency exits in your home, practice using them in the event fire should strike. Be sure that all the windows open easily. Home escape ladders are recommended.
  • If there is a fire hydrant near your home you can assist the fire department by keeping the hydrant clear of snow so in the event it is needed, it can be located.

Finally…

  • Be sure every level of your home has a working smoke alarm, and be sure to check and clean it on a monthly basis.
  • Plan and practice a home escape plan with your family.
  • Contact your local fire department for advice if you have a question on home fire safety.

Natural gas prices are expected to rise 5% this fall & winter

News

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Forecasters say much colder weather will wash over Iowa late tomorrow (Friday) and air conditioners will be switched off as furnaces are turned on. Temperatures are expected to plummet from highs today (Thursday) in the 70s and 80s to lows Saturday night in the 30s. Bruce McDowell, spokesman for the American Gas Association, says Iowans who heat their homes with natural gas can expect to see a moderate price hike in the season ahead.

“Really not much of a change from last year,” McDowell says. “Slight increase in prices and colder temperatures. We’re guessing around a 5% or so increase in total bills.” That estimate is taking into account shutdowns due to hurricanes, snowstorms and other severe weather. McDowell says Iowans shouldn’t have to worry about any natural gas shortages.

“Supplies are abundant,” McDowell says. “Our storage is nearly full. We’ve got a lot of gas ready to come on the market. If prices go up a little bit more, that gas will be flowing in.” He says the predicted five-percent price hike for natural gas over the season ahead can essentially be attributed to two issues — the forecast for a harsher winter ahead and higher transportation costs.

“Half of the jump is because it’s going to be a little colder,” McDowell says. “The other half is because those are the costs that are incurred when you take gas from the production area to the utility and then from the utility to the customer, those all have costs.” The U-S Census Bureau estimates 67-percent of Iowans use natural gas to heat their homes, 15-percent use electricity, 14-percent use propane, and the rest use wood or fuel oil.

(Radio Iowa)

Move provides money for WIC benefits in October

News

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

Three days into the government shutdown, the U-S-D-A has transferred unspent funding from last year to the Women Infants and Children or WIC supplemental food assistance program for the month of October. Jill Lange [LANG], the director of the WIC program for the state, says 66-thousand mothers and children in Iowa receive WIC benefits. “What that means is we are now able to print checks for WIC participants just for the month of October. At this point we are only issuing October because we don’t have any money to go any further out than that,” Lange says.

Checks average about 55-dollars a month, and are usually distributed three months at a time. Recipients will only get their October checks now, and will receive November and December in the mail if the federal shutdown ends before then. Doug Beardsley oversees the WIC program for four southeast Iowa counties and says it isn’t a permanent fix — but he’s staying optimistic the shutdown will end in time.

“Not going to get into the politics of it all, but hopefully members of Congress can sit down and get something worked out so we can get back to doing what we’ve been contracted to do,” Beardsley says. Beardsley says when news got out that the government shutdown had halted WIC, calls poured in from Iowans offering to donate food and infant formula.

(Radio Iowa)

Unusual strong storm front threatens Midwest

News, Weather

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — An unusual strong storm front is threatening the Midwest from the central Plains to the Mississippi Valley over the next several days. The National Weather Service’s Storm Prediction Center in Norman, Okla., says the system could bring heavy thunder, wind, rain and possibly tornadoes on Friday.

Meteorologist Gregory Carbin says about one-third of Iowa and parts of southern Minnesota have a 45 percent chance of severe storms, More than 1 million people live in that risk area.

Parts of Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri and Wisconsin are also on the storm front’s path. Areas as far south as Oklahoma and Texas could be affected. Meteorologists say this is the first time since at least 2000 that a storm this size in the region has been forecast in October a day in advance.

Google shows off newest western Iowa data center

News

October 3rd, 2013 by Ric Hanson

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) — Google’s newest data center in western Iowa is ready to help the company deliver Internet search results, find directions and save information. The Mountain View, Calif.-based company held an open house Thursday afternoon to show off its second data center in Council Bluffs — just across the Missouri River from Omaha, Neb.

Google says it has invested more than $1.1 billion in its two Council Bluffs data centers and created more than 130 jobs so far. The first one opened in 2009. Google has said it chose Council Bluffs for the centers because it offered relatively cheap electricity and had land and skilled workers available. The company also applied for up to $300 million in tax incentives from Iowa.