Thursday Afternoon News, February 11
Fire Department Warns Against Carbon Monoxide Poisoning
(Le Mars) -- Its referred to as the "silent killer". Carbon monoxide poisoning can occur at anytime, but during the winter months, it is especially common. Last week's snow storm caused a Newell family to be overcome by carbon monoxide poisoning when a snow drift had covered their furnace ventilation. Le Mars Fire and Rescue Chief Dave Schipper says many local fire departments including Le Mars and Hinton have responded to a few carbon monoxide related calls in recent weeks.
Schipper says the minimum of exposure to carbon monoxide is listed at 35 parts per million for an eight hour time period. Anything above that level could be dangerous.
Schipper says common causes for carbon monoxide poisoning often happen from gas-burning appliances, furnaces, and vehicles.
The Le Mars Fire Chief says the symptoms of carbon monoxide poisoning can be confused with thinking you have the flu.
Schipper says if you suspect you may have a carbon monoxide concern, don't hesitate to contact the local fire and rescue department.
The fire chief says anything above 1200 parts per million will be lethal. He says at those levels, you could die within an hour. Schipper says the local fire department has also had to respond to a few other odor investigation calls.
Two Vehicle Accident Happens On Highway 75
(Le Mars) -- Two vehicles collided at the intersection of Highway 75 and County Road C-12 on Thursday afternoon. The accident happened shortly after 2:00 p.m. Airbags had deployed, but only minor injuries had occurred. The names of the victims have not been released. The Le Mars Fire and Rescue Department and the Le Mars Ambulance responded to the scene, along with the Plymouth County Sheriff's Office and the Iowa Highway Patrol. The accident is being investigated by the Iowa Highway Patrol.
Rock Valley Woman Given Probation For Theft
ORANGE CITY, Iowa (AP) - A northwest Iowa woman has been given probation and an order to repay more than $19,000 she stole from her former employer.
Court records say 38-year-old Heather Bloemendaal, of Rock Valley, was sentenced Tuesday to four years of probation. She also was given a suspended 10-year prison sentence and was told to make restitution to Stone Soup Cafe in Rock Valley. She'd pleaded guilty to a theft charge.
Prosecutors say Bloemendaal stole the money from the restaurant's bank deposits between Jan. 1 and July 31, 2015.
Woodbury County Sheriff's Office To Patrol Correctionville
CORRECTIONVILLE, Iowa (AP) - Woodbury County supervisors have approved agreements to provide law enforcement services for the towns of Correctionville and Anthon.
The supervisors OK'd an agreement with Correctionville on Tuesday. The agreement with Anthon already has been approved.
Correctionville city clerk Susan Fitch says most of town's residents favored the change because of the cost savings. Correctionville has been patrolled by three-part-time officers shared with Anthon, which is nine miles away.
The sheriff's deputies' patrols will begin March 1.
Floyd Valley Healthcare Not Needing Grassley's REACH Bill
(Le Mars) -- Last week U-S Senator Chuck Grassley of Iowa introduced what is referred to as the REACH bill. Reach stands for Rural Emergency Acute Care Hospital Act. The bill is to help rural hospitals remain open. Grassley says in the last five years more than 65 hospitals have been forced to closed their doors. Would the REACH bill help or hinder the efforts of Floyd Valley Healthcare? Mike Donlin, the administrator with Floyd Valley Healthcare says Grassley's bill would be good for small rural hospitals, but it wouldn't necessarily affect Floyd Valley.
Donlin says it is important to maintain some sort of healthcare for rural areas, but he believes many rural hospitals may be forced to conduct business in a slightly different manner.
Donlin says there may be some Iowa hospitals that will be watching Grassley's bill, hoping that it does pass.
State Senate Acts On Medicaid Privatization Bill
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The Democratic-controlled Senate has passed legislation that would dismantle plans to switch Iowa's $4.2 billion Medicaid program into private management, though the bill isn't expected to advance in the divided Legislature.
The chamber voted 29-19 Thursday for the bill, which would terminate Iowa's contracts with three private companies.
The bill was introduced amid growing tension in the Legislature over the future of Iowa's Medicaid program, which provides health care to roughly 560,000 low-income and disabled residents. Senate Democrats recently sent a letter to President Barack Obama and other federal officials asking them to end the privatization move, set to take effect March 1.
Although three Republican senators voted for the bill, the GOP-majority House isn't expected to take up the measure, which has also been criticized by Gov. Terry Branstad.