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Slick roads causing accidents this morning

News

April 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Slick and/or slushy roads were causing accidents this morning in the listening area. Medivac ambulance was called to the scene of a single-vehicle rollover accident near the Marne exit off Interstate 80, at around 5:35-a.m.  A Cass County Deputy reported from the scene the driver was injured, but the injuries did not appear to have been life threatening. Other accidents along I-80 involved vehicles that slid into the median or ditches.

Roadways are covered with black ice this morning. Along and south of I-80 roads were reported to be partially covered with slush and ice, with the bridges especially dangerous. North of I-80, roads were partially to mostly covered with snow/ice/and-or slush.

Use extra caution when traveling this morning.

Water enthusiasts warned about river temperatures and debris

Ag/Outdoor, News, Sports

April 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Water safety experts are warning canoers, kayakers and boaters that Iowa’s bodies of water have been slow to warm.Kayakers on Maquoketa River in Manchester Certified paddling instructor Darrin Siefken, of Waverly, says even though the air temperature feels spring-like, the water can be ice cold and dangerous. “Our rivers and lakes here in northeast Iowa just thawed out within the last week. So, most of those water temperatures are only about 50 degrees…when the air temperature is in the 60s or so.”

“It’s a good opportunity to dress properly and bring along another set of clothes in a dry bag just in case you would tip over,” Siefken said. Kayaking is becoming increasingly popular in Iowa. Charles City has a world-class course built in 2011 and similar venues are under construction in Manchester and Elkader. Siefken instructs his students, before they hit the water, to let others know where they’re going and when they expect to return.

“And then make sure you follow up and tell them when you get back…it helps with today’s technology that we can get a hold of people pretty easy,” Siefken said. He warns that many rivers in Iowa are full of debris that has washed downstream and could cause navigation problems.

(Radio Iowa)

Death certificate process streamlined in IA

News

April 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Getting a copy of a death certificate in Iowa will get a little easier, beginning next week. The Omaha World-Herald reports  a new electronic system that starts next week, will allow people to pick up a certified copy at any county recorder’s office in the state. Iowa officials say the system will reduce errors and save time for funeral directors and physicians or medical examiners who must complete the forms. Currently a trip to Des Moines or to the office of the county recorder in the county where the person died is necessary.

Certified copies of Death Certificates are needed to handle matters ranging from life insurance policies to stocks and bonds, and to begin the settling of an estate. The current certification process starts with the funeral home, where information about the deceased person is entered into a computer, printed and either hand-delivered or mailed to the person’s physician or to a medical examiner.

The physician or medical examiner then fills in several boxes on the form, records the person’s cause of death and signs the document. When the form is returned to the funeral home, the information is double-checked. If it’s incorrect or incomplete, it must be returned to the physician. The completed, correct forms go to the county recorder along with a request for a certified copy. If the recorder discovers that information is missing, the form goes back to the funeral home. If everything is in order, the recorder prints a certificate and applies the office’s seal to it.

State officials say the new system eliminates the need for funeral directors to deliver records to physicians and to travel to file certifications, state officials say. It also reduces the processing of paper records at county recorders’ offices and by the Bureau of Health Statistics. The system also electronically notifies the Social Security Administration of the death.

Iowa physicians will be required by state law to use the new system. Iowa officials have been conducting training on the system statewide since February.

Iowa News Headlines: Monday, April 14th 2014

News

April 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Here is the latest Iowa news from The Associated Press…

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – At least one tornado has been reported in Iowa as powerful thunderstorms moved across the Midwest and Plains states. The Johnson County Sheriff’s Office in southeastern Iowa says that a tornado was spotted near the town of Lone Tree around 6 o’clock last night but that there were no injuries or damage.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – At least 386 state employees have been hired by Governor Terry Branstad’s administration without advertising the positions, but this is not a new practice in Iowa. Critics told the Des Moines Register the practice makes it easier for friends and campaign donors to land the jobs. But Branstad spokesman Jimmy Centers says the unadvertised hires are allowed under state law for certain jobs.

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Des Moines police are investigating the apparent slaying of a 57-year-old woman on the city’s eastside. The Des Moines Register reports officers were called to a home at 2:14 p.m. Sunday after a relative found the woman unresponsive on the floor. Police didn’t identify the victim yesterday.

AMES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa State University has suspended Abdel Nader from the basketball team after his arrest on suspicion of drunken driving over the weekend. The Iowa State Police arrested Nader around 11:40 p.m. Saturday on suspicion that he was operating a vehicle while intoxicated. Nader is a 6-foot-6 small forward who sat out this past season after transferring to Iowa State from Northern Illinois.

Unruly man forces Southwest jet to divert flight to Omaha

News

April 14th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – A California-bound Southwest Airlines flight was diverted to Omaha, Neb. after witnesses said a passenger tried to open a door midflight. The airline said the Chicago-to-Sacramento plane landed on Eppley Airfield Sunday to “have an unruly passenger removed” before continuing on to its destination. The flight with 5 crew members and 134 passengers arrived in Sacramento about two hours behind schedule.

Monique Lawler told KABC-TV after reaching her final destination in Los Angeles, that the man acted strangely during the flight, and that at one point he came out of the bathroom soaking wet. She said when he went to the back of the cabin to try to pry open the door, a flight attendant screamed for help.

Once on the ground, a doctor onboard told KCRA-TV he and two other passengers tackled the man in the back of the cabin and restrained him until air marshals escorted him off the plane. Scott Porter said the man “was going to do bad things to the plane.”

The airline had no further details about the passenger.

Non-injury accident in Red Oak, Saturday

News

April 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Authorities in Montgomery County say no injuries were reported following a collision Saturday morning, in Red Oak. Officials say a 2003 Chrysler van driven by 83-year old Paul Russell, of Red Oak, was traveling west on East Reed Street at around 8:50-a.m., when it was hit by a 2009 Chevy Impala that was headed north on North 2nd Street. The driver of the car, 23-year old Patrick Hall, of Red Oak, was cited for Failure to Obey a Stop Sign.

Damage from the crash amounted to $3,300.

I-80 2nd accident report

News

April 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

Following the second of two major accidents that occurred Saturday morning on I-80 in Cass County, the Iowa State Patrol says 54-year old Donna Hohnbaum, of  Oregon, WI., was transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital, in Atlantic.  Hohnbaum was a passenger in a 2009 Subaru Outback that ran into the rear of a 2013 Freightliner semi.

The Patrol says both vehicles were traveling west on I-80 at around 10:12-a.m., when a grass fire on the south side of the Interstate caused heavy smoke to roll across the interstate, and created a multi-vehicle accident. The semi, driven by 53-year old John Wetherell, of Elsinore, UT, began to brake for the accidents ahead, when it was hit by the Subaru, driven by 56-year old Charles Hohnbaum, of Oregon, WI.

Neither driver was injured.

ISP releases Saturday I-80 accident reports

News

April 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa State Patrol, Sunday, released more information about a multi-vehicle collision that took place Saturday morning on Interstate 80 in Cass County. There were two separate accident reports. Both collisions  occurred at 10:12-a.m., at the 67-mile marker.  The first accident resulted in one person being sent to the hospital.

The Patrol says one of the crashes happened as a 1999 Ford pickup driven by 69-year old Leroy C. Brown, of Leon, KS, was pulling a camper westbound on I-80. When Brown slowed for dense smoke blowing across the interstate from a field fire south of the interstate, his trailer was hit from behind by a 2002 Pontiac Grand Prix, driven by 19-year old Chyann Smith, of Storm Lake. A 2007 GMC box truck driven by 50-year old Christopher W. Henley, of Brandon, SD, was behind the Grand Prix and was hit by a 2011 International semi driven by 63-year old Thomas Maune, of St. Louis, MO.

The impact sent the GMC truck into the rear of the Grand Prix, which then spun across the median into the eastbound lanes of traffic and back into the median, before it came to rest. The GMC box truck then struck the pickup/camper, causing heavy damage to the camper/trailer. The pickup/Camper/trailer came to rest on the north shoulder of the road, with the trailer partially on the shoulder and partially in the north ditch. The box truck continued into the median and came to rest. Henley was transported by ambulance to the Cass County Memorial Hospital.

The Patrol says after the semi hit the box truck, it slowed and began to pull onto the shoulder, when a 2014 Ford motorhome and towing a vehicle, driven by 75-year old Donald Billings, of Sun City, CA, came upon the crash and swerved to avoid hitting the semi. The motorhome’s right rear side hit the left rear of the semi’s trailer. The impact caused the car-in-tow to break free from the motorhome, which crossed the median and came back into the westbound lanes before coming to rest on the shoulder.

At that point, a 2012 International semi driven by 22-year old John Merritt, of Martinsville, MO., collided with the vehicle that was being towed by the motorhome and the trailer of the 2011 semi. The towed vehicle was pinned to the front of the semi, causing extensive fire damage to the towed vehicle and the semi driven by Merritt. Both semis came to rest on the shoulder of the road, with Merritt’s rig partially blocking the traveled portion of the Interstate.

Westbound traffic was subsequently shut down for roughly 5 hours and detoured off the interstate, while the eastbound lanes were reopened after emergency vehicles left the scene.

Senate panel likely to continue, broaden inquiry

News

April 13th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Senate Democratic leaders say their questions about government payments to former workers for secrecy and other issues will continue after the Legislature adjourns for the year.  While lawmakers appear to be on track to end the session within a few weeks, the Senate Government Oversight Committee is likely to keep pursuing the matter.

Democratic Sen. Janet Petersen, who chairs the oversight committee, has set the next hearing for Monday afternoon, when two Department of Administrative Services officials who declined to testify last week say they will appear. They are Doug Woodley, the agency’s general services enterprise chief operating officer, and Paul Carlson, the chief resource maximization officer.

Peterson says she wants to know more about settlement agreements and how the state handled layoffs during 2011 restructuring.

Red Oak man injured during motorcycle crash not discovered until Sat.

News

April 12th, 2014 by Ric Hanson

(Authorities have corrected victims’ name to Thomas Anderson, not Richard Anderson)

In a report released Saturday night, Police in Council Bluffs said a Montgomery County man was injured during a motorcycle accident that happened sometime Thursday night near Council Bluffs City limits. 55-year old Thomas Anderson, of Red Oak, was riding a motorcycle northbound on Interstate 29 when he was cut-off by a semi. The cycle crashed into the ditch east of the interstate at about the 47.2-mile marker. The accident was discovered by a passing motorist Saturday, who called 9-1-1 after he saw the cycle, pulled over to investigate, and found Anderson lying nearby. Officials say the man was not visible from the road.

Council Bluffs Fire and Rescue responded and transported Anderson to Creighton University Medical Center in Omaha. The man was conscious and breathing and is believed to have suffered non-life threatening injuries. There was no further information available on the semi.