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Conesville, Denison, Buena Vista County see increase in Latino population

News

September 3rd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The state’s Latino population grew by nearly 84 percent in the past decade. The U.S. Census Bureau has released a variety of detailed information about Latinos in Iowa. A county-by-county analysis shows 24 percent of the residents in Crawford County are Latino. Denison is the largest city in Crawford County and the Census shows 42 percent of the city’s residents are Latino.  There were other Iowa cities with a larger percentage of Latinos.

Sixty-three percent of the people living in the small, southeast Iowa community Conesville are Latinos. More than 52 percent of the residents of West Liberty are Latino. About 42 percent of the population of Columbus Junction is Latino. In northwest Iowa’s Buena Vista County – the Storm Lake area — nearly 23 percent of that county’s population is Latino according to the 2010 Census survey.

(Radio Iowa)

NW IA man wants prior fight kept out of trial

News

September 3rd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) – An attorney for a Sioux City man charged in a deadly fight wants to keep statements his client allegedly made to police about a previous fight out of court. Bradley Gregg is charged with involuntary manslaughter and assault. He’s accused of punching Joseph McDonald, of Ida Grove, outside a bar in October 2010. McDonald was knocked out and later died. Gregg’s trial is to start Tuesday in Woodbury County District Court.

Defense attorney Michael Williams plans to use self-defense and intoxication as his defenses. Williams has asked a judge to prevent prosecutors from mentioning an alleged altercation Gregg had a week before the incident involving McDonald. The judge didn’t issue an immediate ruling on the matter.

Fatal accident in Adams County

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

A Corning man was killed Friday evening when the car he was driving was hit broadside by a semi, in Adams County. The Iowa State Patrol says 91-year old Harold Muschamp died at the scene of the crash, located at the intersection of Highways 34 and 148, just south of Corning.

Officials said Muschamp was traveling north on 148 and had stopped at the intersection before pulling out into the path of an eastbound semi driven by 64-year old Billie McCaughey, of Milan, MO. The accident happened at around 5:10-p.m.

After the impact, the car and semi stayed together and came to rest in the eastbound lanes of Highway 34, blocking the traveled portion of the roadway, for a little more than 4 hours. The semi driver was not injured in the crash.

DOT working to get traffic moving again in western Iowa

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

AMES, Iowa – Sept. 2, 2011 – The Iowa Department of Transportation (DOT) has set a proactive course to get traffic moving again in western Iowa just as quickly as possible now that the Missouri River flood waters are beginning to recede. A multitude of activities are underway, some are behind the scenes and others are already visible. For instance, contractors started this week removing tons of debris and power washing the sticky layer of muck from sections of Interstate 29 in Fremont and Pottawattamie counties. Yesterday, the I-29 and Hamilton Boulevard in Woodbury County was fully reopened to travel.

Because there is a lot a work ahead, the Iowa DOT will be providing regular updates to the public regarding damage assessments and progress being made to restore travel. Communications will be provided via news releases, posting of progress updates and photos on the Iowa DOT’s flood information website (http://www.iowadot.gov/floods/index.html), and by other means. The Iowa DOT is examining a wide range of options and innovative approaches to expedite the recovery process. Timetables and cost estimates will be provided when that information becomes available.

Each highway segment impacted by the flooding has unique characteristics and challenges, so the Iowa DOT’s public information efforts will frequently focus on specific sites and activities underway in those areas. Due to safety concerns and reconstruction activities involving heavy equipment, public access beyond the road closure barricades and to the damaged sites is restricted.

Intermittent lane closures on I-680 in Pottawattamie County begin Sept. 27

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

Officials with the Iowa DOT say road construction work on Interstate 680 between I-29 (exit 71) near Loveland and I-80 (exit 27) north of Neola will cause intermittent lane closures in both directions beginning Tuesday, Sept. 27th, weather permitting.  The project is expected to be completed by mid-October.

Bridge construction work on eastbound I-80 in Pottawattamie County begins Sept. 12

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The Iowa Department of Transportation’s Council Bluffs construction office reports bridge construction work on Interstate 80 between Pottawattamie County Road M-16 (exit 34) near Shelby and U.S. 59 (exit 40) near Avoca will cause lane closures in the outside lane beginning Monday, Sept. 12th, weather permitting . The project is expected to be completed by early October.

Minor injuries reported after pickup and semi collide

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

A pickup truck was totaled and its driver suffered possible, minor injuries, after the vehicle collided with a semi this (Friday) morning, in Montgomery County. Sheriff’s officials say 41-year old Ronald Paul Lyons, Jr., of Beaumont, TX, was transported to the Montgomery County Memorial Hospital by Red Oak Rescue, following the crash at around 8-a.m. about half-way between Red Oak and Emerson.

Authorities said Lyons pulled his 2002 Ford F-150 pickup off of the traveled portion of Highway 34 in a turning lane, that would allow a vehicle to turn right off of the highway, without impeding the flow of traffic. As Lyons attempted to conduct a left hand turn, his truck collided with the center portion of a westbound, passing semi-tractor trailer. Following the impact, the pickup ricocheted off of the semi, and came to rest in the ditch at the intersection of Highway 34 and County Road M-37 (Boxelder Avenue).

The driver of the semi, 47-year old Jeffrey Arnold, of Kahoka, MO., locked up the brakes on the cab and trailer. The tractor-trailer slid across the intersection and came to rest on the pavement, facing westbound. Arnold was not injured in the crash, but the 1997 Peterbilt semi he was driving sustained $5,000 damage to a drive axle and fuel tank assembly.

The pickup, valued at $12,000, was a total loss. The sheriff’s report did not indicate if any citations were issued.

Scrap yard fire in Atlantic

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The Atlantic Fire Department responded to a report of a possible vehicle explosion this (Friday) morning, at the local scrap metal recycling plant. The call about a fire at Frederiksen Iron Recycling at 607 Sunnyside Lane, came in just after 11-a.m.

Fire department  officials say workers at the facility were working on a car that was being scrapped, when a fire broke out. There were reports a small explosion, possibly related to a fuel tank rupture, could be heard across the street from the business. Workers at the recycling facility typically punch holes in a fuel tank before a vehicle is crushed or recycled, to prevent such a incident.

The fire was quickly extinguished, and no injuries were reported.

Exira Middle School Teacher Suspended Until Further Notice

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The Superintendent of the Exira-Elk Horn Kimballton School District says a 5th grade teacher has been placed on indefinite suspension, following an incident which allegedly occurred late last month in a classroom. KCCI-TV in Des Moines reports the unidentified teacher was suspended s a result of something he said in front of his fifth-grade class. Parents met with administrators of the school district to discuss the teacher’s behavior, Thursday night.

District Superintendent Dean Schnoes told KCCI the district sent a letter home with parents explaining the situation, but the letter didn’t mention the specifics of the incident.

Schnoes said he “Decided that the individual needed to be suspended until further notice.” Schnoes said a concerned parent called the Exira middle school principal on August 24th.

Aaime Lyle said her daughter told her the teacher threatened to harm himself if the class wouldn’t be quiet. She said her daughter was among 25 fifth-graders in the classroom. Lyle said it was a full week before she learned of the alleged incident from her daughter. According to the girl, the teacher asked the students not to tell.

Schnoes said the students aren’t in danger. He said as part of the investigation, the Audubon County Sheriff’s Office was called in to search for weapons, but none were found. No charges have been filed. The school district also had a counselor talk to the students the next day.

Schnoes said the investigation is ongoing, and even when it’s complete, he said he will likely have to consult with the School Board before the teacher is allowed back in the classroom.

Water releases stable on Missouri River as levees are checked for damage

News

September 2nd, 2011 by Ric Hanson

The Missouri River at Yankton, South Dakota, is now just above 20-feet after maxing out at 26-feet back in early July and remaining there through August. The river dropped below flood stage at Sioux City, Iowa, last week. Dave Becker, operations manager of Gavins Point Dam at Yankton, says releases from the dam have been cut from a record 160-thousand cubic feet per second at the peak down to 90-thousand, where they’re holding.

 

Becker says, “The primary purpose of staying at 90,000 is really so everybody can take a look at their facilities, the levees, the berms, their sandbag walls, all those kinds of things and make sure that everything is in really good condition.” Becker says the lower releases and the pause will allow the inspection of the dam itself in and near the river.

“Everything is going well, thus far,” he says. “I talk to people every day who are assessing their property and their situation. It’s good that we have this pause in here so people can see what needs to be done at this point and possibly react before we start going down further.” The U-S Army Corps of Engineers had to do a lot of re-rocking of river banks close to the dam during the high water as erosion was blasting it away. Becker says there have been no surprises.

“We have not had any catastrophic issues,” he says. “A lot of minor wear-and-tear things will take some time to get fixed up and we’re starting to fix those already.” Thousands of acres of farmland and dozens of homes were flooded for most of the summer in Iowa and Nebraska as the Corps worked to move record amounts of snow melt and heavy upstream rain down the Missouri.

(Radio Iowa)