Tuesday Afternoon News, May 20
Flipped Car Pins Driver In Accident
(Merrill) -- Rescue workers had to extricate an 80 year old female driver after her car had flipped end over end as a result of a one car accident that happened this morning on County Road K-42 about two miles north of Merrill. The accident happened at about 9:40 a.m. According to Plymouth County sheriff's deputies, the car driven by Donna Cornish of rural Ireton, initially left the pavement on the west shoulder, then the driver overcorrected and crossed the center line and lost control entering the east ditch where her car had flipped. Skid marks could be seen on the pavement as to where the driver tried to stop the vehicle. The driver was pinned inside the vehicle, and rescue personnel from the Merrill Fire Department, Le Mars Fire and Rescue, Le Mars Ambulance, and Merrill Ambulance worked for more than an hour in attempting to get the driver out of the flipped car. Cornish was airlifted via helicopter to Mercy Medical Trauma Center. While the rescue was being performed, thirteen semi trucks loaded with corn were lined up on the county road waiting to get access to the Plymouth Energy ethanol plant. The Plymouth County Sheriff's Department is investigating the accident. Besides the previously mentioned entities, the Iowa Highway Patrol, and the Merrill Police also assisted at the scene.
Crops Damaged By Frost
(Le Mars) -- Last week's freezing temperatures have caused some widespread damage to western Iowa corn fields according to Joel DeJong, Iowa State University Extension crops specialist.
DeJong says in many instances corn had already emerged when the cooler temperatures had hit, but he believes the crop will recover.
As for soybeans, the crops specialist says fortunately, he had not seen any soybeans in this area, that had emerged prior to the frost. DeJong says if soybeans had emerged, they no doubt would have been damaged by the frost.
Statewide, 40 percent of the soybeans have been planted and DeJong believes northwest Iowa farmers have perhaps planted as much as 60 percent of the intended soybean acreage. DeJong says farmers will want to start scouting for black cut worms. He says based on the populations of adult larvae, he expects the pest could start feeding on the young plants within the next week.
The Iowa State University Extension agronomist says the day length and temperatures will determine how fast the cutworms will move into this area. He says as the corn slows down, so does the insects and other pests.
School Bus Driver Attacked
WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) - A 20-year-old Waterloo man has pleaded guilty in the attack of a school bus driver who had scolded the man's sister.
Davontay Robertson made the plea Monday after reaching a deal with prosecutors for a reduced charge. Court records say he's also known as Dashawn Robertson.
Robertson says he and his mother got in a car and followed the bus after his sister came home crying because of a dispute with the bus driver after school on Sept. 12. Robertson says he and the driver argued when Robertson entered the bus. Robertson says he felt threatened, so he hit the driver. Court records say the driver was punched in the head several times.
Robertson's sentencing hasn't been scheduled.
Pianos In Mason City
MASON CITY, Iowa (AP) - An old piano has been given a reprieve from a landfill and instead could soon grace a sidewalk in Mason City.
Doug Price works for Forest City, and he told the Mason City Globe Gazette that he'd read about the piano tipped over by a drunken 21-year-old early Sunday morning in front of Lorados restaurant. It was one of four donated pianos that were decorated by 20 high school juniors as part of the Tunes for the Town project.
Price told his mother that he'd rather donate her piano to Mason City, and she gave her permission.
Chamber of Commerce executive director Robin Anderson had worked with the students on the project, and she says she received several calls from people offering help after they learned about the vandalism.
Pianos In Des Moines
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - The City Council has approved a proposal to place pianos outdoors on sidewalks and plazas in downtown Des Moines.
Des Moines television station KCCI says the council gave its blessing Monday to a plan from City Sounds: Des Moines Public Piano Project. Organizers say they want to have up to three pianos available around the city this summer. They say installation will begin in mid-June and that more pianos could be added in future years.
Co-organizer Larry James says the purpose "is to generate life on the street and generate activity."
The pianos will be bolted to the ground and will be covered and locked overnight and during rainstorms. They would be taken indoors during winter.
HARPER'S FERRY, Iowa (AP) - Officials and bird lovers will gather later this month in northeast Iowa to officially designate the state's first "globally important bird area."
The Effigy Mounds-Yellow River Forest Bird Conservation Area will receive the designation May 31. The area includes 135,000 acres along the Mississippi River in Allamakee and Clayton counties.
Much of the credit for the designation goes to Jon "Hawk Man" Stravers, who has spent years documenting that habitat and birds in the conservation area. The Iowa Department of Natural Resources calls it the "largest unfragmented forest remaining in Iowa."
The designation comes from Great Britain-based BirdLife International and the National Audubon Society. It's intended to help protect at-risk birds.
The Iowa DNR says it will help ensure effective management of the woodlands.
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