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Iowa stopped inspecting egg farms during bird flu outbreak

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — Iowa suspended its inspections of egg farms last year during the bird flu outbreak, and the state still hasn’t resumed the routine checks. The Des Moines Register reports state officials followed the lead of federal investigators in stopping inspections to help limit the spread of bird flu, which prompted the slaughter of 48 million birds nationwide.

Federal inspectors are responsible for large egg-laying farms that typically have more than 3,000 birds. State inspectors make sure smaller farms are following safety regulations. Iowa Agriculture Secretary Bill Northey says the state plans to resume its inspections when the Food and Drug Administration lifts its own ban on them.

Several other states were bird flu was found also suspended inspections for several months, but most resumed inspections late last year.

Single-vehicle accident w/minor injuries Sun. afternoon

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Atlantic and Marne Fire and Rescue personnel along with Medivac Ambulance were called to the scene of a single-vehicle accident Sunday afternoon on Interstate 80. The accident was reported at around 12:06-p.m.

A 32-foot R-V pulling a Jeep Liberty was said to be in the median at the 55.6 mile marker. A female in the vehicle with previous back issues was said to be complaining of lower back pain. The 66-year old female and a 70-year old male in the R-V, both from Michigan, were transported to the Cass County Memorial Hospital to be checked out.

Traffic control was being established in the area for the safety of emergency personnel.

1 man dies and another hurt in incident at fertilizer plant

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

SERGEANT BLUFF, Iowa (AP) — One worker died and another was hospitalized while working to build a massive fertilizer plant in northwest Iowa. The Sioux City Journal reports the two men were working inside a tower tank Saturday afternoon when the problem occurred at the CF Industries construction site near Sergeant Bluff. The man who died fell unconscious inside the tank and couldn’t be rescued before his death. The second man escaped the tank, and was hospitalized in Sioux City.

CF Industries says the area where the incident occurred isn’t in operation now, so it shouldn’t be a danger to other workers. The company is nearing the completion of a $2 billion expansion of its Port Neal fertilizer plant. The project includes new ammonia and urea plants.

Western IA authorities search for Bluffs Work Release escapee

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa Department of Corrections reports an inmate escaped Saturday from the Council Bluffs Work Release Facility. 58-year Michael Richard Rae was placed on escape status following an unexcused absence from the facility. Rae was described as being a white male, with gray hair and brown eyes. He stands about six-feet, two-inches tall, and weighs 223 pounds. He also has a scar on his left ankle.

Rae was serving a ten-year sentence for second degree robbery in Pottawattamie County. Anyone with information on his location is asked to call their local law enforcement agency.

Iowa egg farm faces state legal action for wastewater spill

Ag/Outdoor, News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — One of the nation’s largest egg farms, which lost millions of hens in last year’s bird flu outbreak, is defending itself against legal action by the state over a wastewater spill that killed 163,000 fish. The Environmental Protection Commission has referred Sunrise Farms to the attorney general for enforcement of violations of state laws and administrative regulations regarding the contamination of about 18 miles of Stoney Creek. The company owns egg-laying barns near Harris designed to hold up to 8 million hens.

An attorney for Sunrise Farms, an affiliate of South Dakota-based Sonstegard Foods, says the wastewater discharge happened a few months after the bird flu outbreak destroyed 3.8 million chickens and the farm was dealing with production issues it had never before experienced.

Crawford County’s K9 scores another drug bust & 2 arrests

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A traffic stop this (Sunday) morning north of Denison, in Crawford, County, netted drugs and the arrest of two men. The Crawford County Sheriff’s Office reports the department’s K-9 “Bayou” conducted a perimeter search of a vehicle pulled over on Highway 59 and alerted to the odor of narcotics coming from the vehicle. As a result of the search, Marijuana, Methamphetamine, and Drug Paraphernalia were located and seized.

22-year old Stormy Trucke, of Mapleton, was arrested for Possession of Meth 3rd or Subsequent offense, Possession of Marijuana 3rd or Subsequent offense, and Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. His bond was set at $5,000. 37-year old Chad Gloede, also of Mapelton, was arrested for Possession of Drug Paraphernalia. His bond was set at $300.

Sheriff James R. Steinkuehler reports, as of today (Sunday), K-9 Bayou has assisted in making 130 arrests, the recovery of 28 pounds of narcotics, and the seizure of nearly $25,000 in cash.

Rollover accident in I-80 in Cass County – no injuries

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Authorities said no injuries were reported following a two-vehicle accident Saturday night on Interstate 80, in Cass County. According to dispatch reports at around 10:12-p.m., a vehicle rolled off I-80 between the 56 and 57-mile marker, westbound, during the collision. The road was said to be icy at the time.

The Iowa State Patrol was handling the accident investigation. No other details are currently available.

NE man arrested Sat. night on a drug charge in Adams County

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Adams County Sheriff’s Deputies arrested a Nebraska man on a drug charge Saturday night, following a traffic stop. The vehicle driven by 21-year old Garrett Jeffrey Bazzell, of LaVista, NE., was pulled over at around 9:40-p.m.  During the stop, the deputy noticed an odor of marijuana coming from the vehicle. When asked for the narcotics, Bazzell handed over to the deputy, a small amount of marijuana. He was booked into the Adams County Jail for Possession of Marijuana. Bond was set at $1,000.

Blanchard man arrested Sat. evening in Montgomery Co. on drug & other charges

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

Sheriff’s Deputies in Montgomery County arrested a man on drug and other charges, Saturday evening. 39-year old Jeffrey Wade Bartles, of Blanchard was taken into custody following a traffic that took place just after 7-p.m. Bartles was brought to the Montgomery County Jail and held on bond for charges that include Possession of Drug Paraphernalia, Driving while revoked for OWI/test failure, and on a Page County warrant.

Sat. legislative coffee in C. Bluffs addresses gun control & DST

News

March 20th, 2016 by Ric Hanson

A House bill allowing children of any age to fire handguns with parental supervision was shot down, while expanding daylight saving time won’t see the light of day. The Omaha World-Herald reports those were two of the topics at Saturday’s legislative coffee, in Council Bluffs.

A House-approved bill changing state law that currently restricts children under age 14 from using handguns has not come out of a Senate committee, effectively killing the bill for this year. The bill would have allowed parents the choice to teach their children how to handle a gun responsibly. Senate Majority Leader Mike Gronstal, of Council Bluffs said the House proposal went too far by not setting any limits.

While some states are exploring the expansion of daylight saving time to the entire year, Iowa is not among them. Gronstal said there was no effort being put forth in the legislature to address the matter, Representative Mary Ann Hanusa, a Republican from Council Bluffs, agreed.

At the beginning of the coffee, Hanusa spoke about her friend Jacqueline Dieckmann, who was slain last week along with her 91-year old mother. Dieckmann’s son has been charged in the deaths. Hanusa reflected on the fact Dieckman would usually attend the legislative coffees, and that the state had lost a strong advocate for mental health causes.