UPDATE – Emergency Rescue Crews Respond To Roll-over Accident
(Le Mars) — Emergency rescue units responded to a one-vehicle roll-over accident that happened this morning at about 9:05 a.m. The accident happened on the northbound lane of Highway 75 at mile marker 119, just north of Highway 3. Officials estimate the vehicle rolled several yards from the
highway. Three people were in the vehicle when it had rolled. the preliminary investigation shows the the vehicle hit ice and snow and lost control, entering the east ditch, rolling several times before coming to rest along a DOT fenceline. Injured victims were transported to Floyd Valley Healthcare in Le Mars by the Le Mars Ambulance Services.
One of the passengers was ejected from the vehicle and later died at Floyd Valley healthcare. The victims name is being withheld until relatives have been notified. The other two passengers were treated and released with minor injuries
Plymouth County Sheriff’s Office is investigating the scene of the accident.
Floyd Valley Issues Statement Regarding Increase Number Of COVID-19 Positive Cases
(Le Mars) — Floyd Valley Healthcare officials have issued a statement regarding the increase of positive cases due to the spread of the coronavirus.
Lorrie Mortensen, Director of Patient Care, says, “Floyd Valley Healthcare, as well as a majority of the hospitals in our region, continues to operate at a higher capacity due to COVID and other seasonal illnesses. Now, as much as any time in our history, we are here to serve our communities with whatever health concerns they may have. In addition to successfully treating many COVID patients, we continue to safely deliver newborns, perform needed surgeries and see patients with chronic health issues.”
Governor Reynolds Issues New Restrictions To Curb COVID-19 Positive Rates
(Des Moines) — Governor Kim Reynolds has issued new restrictions in order to attempt to reduce the number of COVID-19 cases in Iowa. Reynolds held a news conference Tuesday morning to address the severity of the on-going spreading coronavirus. Reynolds says that on Monday, 1,131 Iowans were hospitalized with the COVID-19 virus. Of that number 89 percent were of the age of 50 and over. Patients that were hospitalized with specific COVID-19 symtoms and conditions accounted for about 15.2 percent of the total state’s hospital census, and patients that tested for COVID-19, but were in the hospital for other health related conditions account for nearly 21 percent of the state’s hospitalizations.
Reynolds says the trends cannot continue as they have, and changes need to occur, and all Iowans need to do what we can to stop the spread of the coronavirus.
Reynolds has extended the emergency proclamation for an additional 30 days, and is now calling for additional preventive measures.
The governor then informed the media and the general public of the new restrictions that go into effect at midnight tonight.
Reynolds continues to read the new measures to help slow down the rate of positive cases of COVID-19 and how they will impact school activities, and restaurants, bars, and nightclubs.
Governor Reynolds is extending the provisions to recreational activities, and is also asking businesses to see if additional workforce can conduct the work from home.
Southeast Polk School Bus Driver Dies of COVID Complications
(Pleasant Hill, IA) — The Southeast Polk Community School District is mourning the COVID-related death of school bus driver John Wright. Officials say Wright died over the weekend at age 61 after testing positive for coronavirus several weeks ago. A district spokeswoman says it’s unknown how Wright became infected. He was not part of ongoing contact tracing efforts.
Wright had been a driver with Southeast Polk since 2016 and had 13 years experience in other school districts. Counseling is available for students and staff.
Waterloo Extends Mask Mandate, Mayor Hart Tests Positive For COVID
(Waterloo, IA ) — The Waterloo City Council is extending its mask mandate for another 12 weeks. Mayor Quentin Hart announced at Monday night’s virtual meeting that he’s recovering from COVID-19. The order requires people to
wear face coverings inside public buildings and on public transportation.
The Black Hawk County Health Department said it’s still seeing high levels of COVID-19 activity and that’s leading to delays in contact tracing efforts.
Iowa Governor Kim Reynolds and Attorney General Tom Miller say that face mask mandates are not enforceable.
Iowa Caucus Defender, Former GOP Chair Roberts Dies
(Des Moines, IA) — An Iowan who was a leading defender of the state’s first-in-the-nation Caucuses has died. Steve Roberts, a Des Moines attorney, served as chairman of the Iowa Republican Party for four years in the late ’70s and early ’80s. He later served 20 years on the Republican National Committee, repelling attempts to dislodge Iowa’s Caucuses from their starting spot in presidential campaigns. As news of his death, at the age of 80, spread on Twitter, Roberts was remembered as a kind and generous man, with a knack for telling some epic campaign stories.
Cold Front Brings Cooler Temps to Iowa, Snow in Northwest
(Sioux Falls, SD) — It’s going to start feeling like late fall and winter in Iowa. The National Weather Service says a cold front has arrived and high temperatures will plummet this afternoon (Tuesday). Rain and snow will also be falling. Iowa’s northwestern third is under a winter weather advisory.
Forecasters say three inches of snow is possible, though some areas could get up to six.
Migrating Waterfowl Killed By Vehicles After Confusing Wet Pavement For Wetlands
(Sioux City) — A unique weather phenomenon caused migrating waterfowl in northwest Iowa to mistake wet parking lots and roads with wetlands and marshes last night, resulting in hundreds being stuck and killed by vehicles.
State Conservation Officer Steve Griebel, of Woodbury County, started getting phone calls and text messages about ducks on the road around 9:30 p.m. Monday, then again early Tuesday morning. He saw it firsthand today while heading east on Hwy. 20 toward Hwy. 71.
“I counted over 200 dead ducks on the highway, and can only imagine how many dead ones were out of sight in the ditch,” Griebel said. “It was all different species – mostly bluebills, but there were mallards, buffleheads, teal. It must have been an epic migration.”
The migration began when bitter cold settled into central Canada and the Dakotas sending ducks and geese south, and then turned fatal when the waterfowl encountered a strong mixed precipitation weather front and needed to set down.
“Situations similar to this one has been known to occur when you have extreme cold weather that collides with a strong front,” said Orrin Jones, state waterfowl biologist for the Iowa Department of Natural Resources. “This is a unique, one-time event that there’s nothing much we could do about, and should be over now.”
Those looking to utilize the road killed ducks will need to be properly licensed, which means a valid hunting license, habitat fee, migratory game bird fee and federal duck stamp and follow daily bag and possession limits.