Monday News, November 24
Tragic Accident Claims Five Lives
SLOAN, Iowa (AP) - Five people have been killed and three others taken to a hospital in serious condition after a head-on crash east of Sloan.
Woodbury County Sheriff Dave Drew says the accident happened about 3:30 p.m. Saturday at Highway 141 and Eastland Avenue. Drew says a white Chevy Trailblazer, operated by 33 year old Shishay Gidey of Sioux City was westbound on Highway 141 when the driver veered onto the gravel and overcorrected, causing them to lose control and crash into an eastbound black GMC pickup truck being driven by 70 year old Larry Malone of Des Moines. Shortly after the collision, the Trailblazer started on fire. Sheriff Drew says there were four occupants in each vehicle. The collision resulted in the deaths of three occupants of the Trailblazer. KIBROM GE-BREM-ICHAEL, AGE 46, FROM SIOUX CITY. YOHANES TES-FAM-ARIAM, AGE 34, FROM SIOUX CITY. BAHTA GE-BRE-MEDHEN, AGE 60, SIOUX CITY.
TWO OCCUPANTS DIED IN THE SIERRA PICK-UP. MYRNA MALONE, AGE 70, FROM DES MOINES, IOWA AND DONNA TIMM, AGE 80, FROM UTE, IOWA.
THE DRIVER OF THE TRAILBLAZER WAS INITALLY TRANSPORTED TO MERCY HOSPITAL IN SIOUX CITY BY MERCY AIR CARE. HE WAS LATER TAKEN TO OMAHA, NEBRASKA FOR SPECIALIZED CARE. HIS CONDITION IS UNKNOWN.THE DRIVER OF THE SIERRA PICK-UP WAS TRANSPORTED TO MERCY MEDICAL CENTER ALONG WITH JESSICA MALONE OF DES MOINES, IOWA. THEIR CONDITIONS ARE UNKNOWN.
Drew said road conditions were not a factor in the crash.
Responding to that tragic accident were the Iowa Highway Patrol, Woodbury County Sheriff's Office, MEDICAL RESPONSE INCLUDED, SLOAN FIRE AND RESCUE, SALIX AMBULANCE, HORNICK FIRST RESPONDERS, SMITHLAND FIRST RESPONDERS, OTO AMBULANCE, SGT. BLUFF AMBULANCE, HEALY WORKS FIRE DEPARTMENT, MERCY AIR CARE, AND AN AIR AMBULANCE FROM OMAHA, NEBRASKA THAT WAS LATER GROUNDED DUE TO WEATHER. THE IOWA DOT ASSISTED WITH RE-ROUTING AS THE CRASH BLOCKED BOTH LANES OF TRAFFIC TILL THE HIGHWAY RE-OPENED Saturday evening at 10:30 p.m. An investigation is ongoing.
Sioux City Could See A Winter Wonderland Park
SIOUX CITY, Iowa (AP) - Residents in northwestern Iowa could soon have their own winter wonderland.
The Sioux City Council will consider on Monday a $2.3 million proposal for a winter recreational project at the city's new Cone Park.
The Sioux City Journal reports that the project would be built on city-owned land next to the IBP Ice Center and Lewis and Clark Park in Morningside.
A recommendation based on a recent community survey says the park could include such features as hills for sledding and tubing, trails for cross-country skiing and warm-weather hiking, tow ropes, an outdoor ice skating rink and a warming house.
The recommendation also suggests the city charge an admission fees, provide concessions and equipment rentals and make the park available for private rentals year-round.
Hy-Vee Donates To Children's Hospital
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - Grocery store chain Hy-Vee has donated $500,000 for the construction of the University of Iowa Children's Hospital.
The university's foundation tells the Iowa City Press-Citizen that the donation pushed fundraising efforts over the $29 million mark.
The university and foundation are working to raise $50 million in private donations for the new $292 million, 480,000 square-foot, pediatric hospital, which is scheduled to open in 2016. The fundraising effort is part of the foundation's "For Iowa, Forever More" campaign to raise $1.7 billion. Foundation officials report that larger campaign already has raised more than $1.37 billion, or about 80 percent of its goal.
Study Shows Black Iowa Youth More Likely To Be Suspended From School
IOWA CITY, Iowa (AP) - A study says black youth in Iowa are nearly five times more likely to be suspended from school and to be arrested by police than whites.
An advisory committee for Iowa's court system says in the report that "disproportionate minority contact" with the juvenile justice system is a major problem that needs to be addressed.
District Judge Duane Hoffmeyer of Sioux City, who chaired the committee, says schools, law enforcement agencies and judges all need to make reforms.
The report calls on Governor Terry Branstad and state leaders to host a summit to bring attention to the disparities, and to take several actions over the next five years.
Recommendations include adopting more training on racial bias and new screening tools to recommend punishments for juvenile offenders.
Police Chief On Administrative Leave After Passing Stopped School Bus
FAYETTE, Iowa (AP) - A northeast Iowa police chief remains on leave after he was ticketed for passing a stopped school bus.
Fayette Mayor Andrew Wenthe told the Waterloo-Cedar Falls Courier reports that Police Chief Brad Alan Gardner is on administrative leave.
Gardner was ticketed earlier this month after a bus driver for North Fayette Valley School District reported the chief went around his bus while it was stopped and disabled students were getting off the bus.
The Fayette City Council may discuss Gardner's actions at a special meeting on Monday.
Farmers And Landowners Oppose Proposed Electrical Transmission Line
WATERLOO, Iowa (AP) - A proposed 500-mile transmission line to carry electricity from wind turbines in northwest Iowa to customers in Illinois is encountering significant resistance from farmers and other landowners across the state.
The proposed Rock Island Clean Line would cross 16 Iowa counties and 1,540 different properties.
A group of more than 1,000 landowners in the region has organized the Preservation of Rural Iowa Alliance to oppose the project.
Houston-based Clean Line Energy Partners is proposing the transmission line. The company's Beth Conley says even though Iowa won't receive energy from the line, the state will receive an economic boost from the $7 billion investment.
And Conley says the amount the company is offering landowners for easements is a reasonable amount.
Democrats Try To Regroup After Election Defeat
DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) - After a bruising midterm election where they lost a competitive Senate race and emerged with just one of four congressional seats, Iowa Democrats are trying to regroup.
The recent results mean that Iowa will no longer have a congressional delegation evenly divided between Democrats and Republicans. The retirement of longtime Sen. Tom Harkin creates a leadership void. And despite a significant voter outreach effort, many Democrats stayed home this year, suggesting the party's message was lacking.
State Sen. Janet Peterson, a Democrat from Des Moines, says the party is in a "rebuilding mode."
Democrats did maintain control by a narrow margin in the Iowa Senate, while Republicans expanded their majority in the Iowa House.