Home News Tuesday Afternoon News, March 31st

Tuesday Afternoon News, March 31st


Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department Responds To Gas Leak

(Le Mars) — The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department was called to 126 1st Street Southwest at approximately 9:44 a.m. this morning for a reported gas line leak. Le Mars Fire Chief Dave Schipper says, even though the area was previously marked for various utilities, a company that was conducting boring
for the installation of fiber optic cable unfortunately hit the gas line.

Schipper says with the amount of gas that was leaking, it could have created a potential danger to the neighborhood.

The Le Mars fire chief says fortunately, firefighters did not have far to go to respond to the gas leak.

Firefighters were on the scene for approximately a half an hour. MidAmerican Energy personnel have also arrived at the scene to make the necessary repairs.



Iowa Department Of Public Health Reports An Additional 73 Cases Of COVID-19

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Iowa public health officials say coronavirus cases have increased by 73 to a total statewide of 497 due to surging numbers in populous counties in central and eastern Iowa. One additional death was reported, a Muscatine County resident between 41 and 60 years old. Seven people in Iowa have died of the disease caused by the coronavirus. The virus is now present in 57 of Iowa’s 99 counties. Case counts have been growing fastest in Linn County in eastern Iowa, where an additional 19 cases were reported Tuesday for a total of 90. Polk County posted an increase of 15 cases in all age groups to 76.



Plymouth County Community Health Director Says Officials Are Learning More About COVID-19 Virus Every Day

(Le Mars) — More than half of Iowa counties are reporting having at least one confirmed case of the coronavirus. However, Plymouth County, as of Tuesday, has not had a case of COVID-19 coronavirus reported, but Plymouth County Community Health Director Tara Geddes believes that within time,
Plymouth County perhaps will see its first positive testing case.

Geddes says with each passing day, health officials are learning more about the virus.

The Plymouth County Community Health Director says one reason for the virus to be affecting so many people living in urban-based areas is because of the density of the population. Geddes says public health officials are predicting the peak of the virus may occur within the next couple of weeks for Iowa, but she says it still has the possibility of returning.

Many people are wondering if they do get infected with the virus, and make a full recovery, would they be immune to being infected a second time of having the COVID-19 virus?

There are various different types of coronaviruses. The Plymouth County Public Health official says researchers are trying to learn if this strain of virus have any similarities to other types of viruses that we have been able to combat.

Geddes emphasizes for people to remain separated and isolated from others.



Jeneary Understands Why Governor Reynolds Has Not Issued A “Shelter-In-Place Order

(Le Mars) — Neighboring states of Illinois and Minnesota have issued a “Stay-in-Place” or “Shelter-in Place” order due to the spread of the coronavirus, and many Iowans are wondering if Governor Reynolds should also issue such an order? State Representative Dr. Tom Jeneary of Le Mars says he appreciates the work Governor Reynolds is doing with regards to the virus, and he understands the reasons why the governor has not taken the additional action to prevent the spread of the virus.

Jeneary says other reasons is because of Iowa’s position with food production.

Another reason, according to Jeneary, is our manufacturing industry.



Senior Life Solutions To Partner With Floyd Valley Healthcare

(Le Mars) — Floyd Valley Healthcare is pleased to announce a partnership with Senior Life Solutions. Floyd Valley Senior Life Solutions will be located in the lower level of Floyd Valley Healthcare. The program has been delayed due to necessary precautions that are being taken to keep patients, visitors and the community safe from COVID-19. The program as soon as it is safe to do so.  Program Director, Lori Johnson explains the purpose behind Senior Life Solutions.

Floyd Valley Senior Life Solutions wants the public to know that during this time they are available to assist seniors who are struggling with isolation, loneliness, grief, anxiety or depression. Johnson says she expects the services to be busy with seniors having anxiety with COVID-19 coronavirus.

The office is staffed Monday through Friday from 8 a.m. – 4:30 p.m. with licensed nurses and a mental health therapist. The staff is available to make phone calls to check in on
area seniors, and be a resource for them in the community.  Johnson talks about the staff of Senior Life Solutions.

If you’re concerned about a family member, neighbor, church member or you yourself need assistance, please contact Senior Life Solutions at (712) 546-3700.



Robbery Suspect Caught After Trying To Flee On Pedestrian Bridge

COUNCIL BLUFFS, Iowa (AP) – Authorities say a robbery suspect who fled Iowa officers early Monday by running across a pedestrian bridge over the Missouri River was captured on the Nebraska side. Police say an armed man robbed a convenience store just a few blocks from the entrance to the Bob Kerrey
Pedestrian Bridge. Officers soon learned that a female was accompanying the robber. A few minutes later police were tipped that the two were going onto the bridge. Officers went there and gave chase. Police say the female was caught on the Iowa side and the man was captured by Omaha officers on the
Nebraska side.



Judge Tells Juvenile Detention Facility To Stop Using Restraints

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – A federal judge has ordered an Iowa state home for male juvenile offenders to stop the use of a physical restraining device and to reform its use of isolation as a form of punishment. The Des Moines Register reports that the ruling Monday came in a class-action lawsuit filed against the Boys State Training School in Eldora in 2017 by two advocacy
groups. At issue is the use of an immobilizing device called “the wrap” on boys at the facility – nearly five hours at a time, in some cases – and boys as young as 14 routinely forced into isolation for weeks at a time.



Judge Sets Wednesday As Date To Hold Hearing On Reynold’s Ruling

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – An Iowa judge has set a hearing for Wednesday to consider whether to block an order by Gov. Kim Reynolds halting abortions in the state. State district court Judge Andrew Chappell signed an order Monday setting the telephone hearing to consider arguments by abortion providers and
the Iowa attorney general’s office, which is representing Reynolds. Abortion providers say Reynolds violated the state constitution by including abortion in an order enacted Friday halting non-emergency medical procedures to preserve medical equipment during the coronavirus pandemic. Judges in Texas,
Alabama and Texas on Monday halted similar efforts in those states.



Army Corps Of Engineers Say Many Levees Still Vulnerable To Flooding

O’FALLON, Mo. (AP) – With flood concerns already high in the Midwest, the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers is warning that many levees on the Missouri and Kansas rivers that were damaged during last year’s devastating floods remain vulnerable to high water. The National Weather Service has said Nebraska, Iowa, Kansas and Missouri and eastern North Dakota and South Dakota
face an above-average flood risk this spring, due largely to soil saturation to the north. Record flooding in 2019 damaged several levees, many of which have yet to be repaired. The Corps says “challenging weather conditions and higher flows” continue, delaying the ability to fully assess damage.