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Frigid temperatures create hurdles for fire fighters

JOPLIN, Mo. — Although fighting fires is challenging no matter the weather conditions, below freezing temperatures can bring on added challenges.

When fighting a fire it’s expecting the unexpected that is important. But before Redings Mill Fire Department crew members can even do that they need to get to the fire.

Chris Taylor – Redings Mill Fire Department, Lieutenant, said, “One of the concerns is getting to the scene. You know with the road conditions and stuff.”

Those road conditions also cause for a slower commute.

“We go way below the speed limit. Depending on, usually we don’t run emergency because with hazards like this, you know people try to pull over. You know they could slide off into a ditch and stuff, so we try and limit the emergency part.”

Once overcoming road conditions it’s preparing for unfortunate events that fire fighters have to deal with.

“When you’re flowing water in negative 25 degree wind chill, it’s gonna freeze up pretty quick, so those are a lot of concerns and challenges we have to deal with.”

Lucky enough, there’s always a backup plan.

“We have other apparatus on scene, so if need be we can switch to another engine.”

While just getting to the fire, and hoping the pipes don’t freeze is one of their first concerns, they also need to have more fire fighters on duty.

“Trying to keep the fire fighters warm, and you know switching them out as often as we can, putting them in vehicles that are warm, get them warmed up,”

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Spire seeing high demand for natural gas

FOUR STATE AREA — Spire Energy says the freezing temperatures are creating a higher demand for natural gas.

Spire says right now they are keeping up with the demand. They say during extreme cold temperatures the demand for natural gas goes up and the supply has been slower because wells are becoming icy.

Spire says they do not foresee any service issues in the future.

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Spire is asking Missouri customers to immediately reduce natural gas usage

ST. LOUIS (Feb. 15, 2021) — With natural gas supplies impacted across the Midwest, Spire is implementing an emergency curtailment plan in their service areas across Southwest Missouri. Spire is asking customers to reduce usage immediately.

To prevent system outages due to frigid weather conditions, Spire is asking customers to turn thermostats as low as they can comfortably tolerate and to minimize the use of any other natural gas appliances over the next 48 hours.

“We don’t want to alarm people, but we don’t want to surprise them,” said Scott Carter, Spire Missouri president. “Our operations teams are closely monitoring the situation and we are working around the clock to keep customers safe.”

In addition, Spire is asking commercial and industrial customers to reduce their gas usage at facilities to minimum levels necessary to protect buildings and inventory. This request does not apply to hospitals, nursing homes, essential food processors, and other human needs applications.

“Working together as a community, we can do our best to keep gas pressure levels up and keep homes warm for everyone,” said Carter.

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Missouri cancels mass vaccination events due to extreme cold

ST. LOUIS – Because of the severe winter weather, Missouri has canceled its scheduled mass vaccination events through this Friday.

Governor Mike Parson said the weather “threatens the health and safety of anyone exposed to the cold” including patients and volunteers.

The Missouri Department of Health and Senior Services is working to reschedule every event. However, people who were already registered are being encouraged to seek out another vaccinator in their region.

Parson said this week’s cancelations does not affect the weekly allocation of vaccine doses.

For additional information and updates on mass vaccination events across the state, visit MOstopsCOVID.com.

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Southwest Missouri customers immediately asked to reduce natural gas usage

ST. LOUIS (Feb. 15, 2021) — With natural gas supplies impacted across the Midwest, Spire is
implementing an emergency curtailment plan in their service areas across Southwest Missouri. Spire is asking customers to reduce usage immediately.

To prevent system outages due to frigid weather conditions, Spire is asking customers to turn thermostats as low as they can comfortably tolerate and to minimize the use of any other natural gas appliances over the next 48 hours.

“We don’t want to alarm people, but we don’t want to surprise them,” said Scott Carter, Spire Missouri president. “Our operations teams are closely monitoring the situation and we are working around the clock to keep customers safe.”

In addition, Spire is asking commercial and industrial customers to reduce their gas usage at facilities to minimum levels necessary to protect buildings and inventory. This request does not apply to hospitals, nursing homes, essential food processors, and other human needs applications.

“Working together as a community, we can do our best to keep gas pressure levels up and keep homes warm for everyone,” said Carter.

For more information on ways you can do your part and help conserve energy during these extreme conditions, go to SpireEnergy.com/ColdWeather.

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New-Mac Electric returns to normal operations

NEOSHO, Mo. — New-Mac Electric says they will be returning to regular operations.

As of 10:30 a.m., Tuesday, New-Mac Electric Cooperative has returned to normal operations in the aftermath of the extreme, frigid temperatures that hit Southwest Missouri beginning this past weekend.

New-Mac experienced all-time record system loads over the last three days while dealing with temperatures approaching 20 degrees below zero. New-Mac avoided any rolling system blackouts, and the cooperative is extremely grateful of all residential, commercial and industrial customers who did their part to conserve electric usage during this critical time.

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5-year-old girl wakes from coma after crash involving Chiefs coach Britt Reid

KANSAS CITY, Mo. (WDAF) — The family of a 5-year-old girl left in a coma after a wreck involving Kansas City Chiefs coach Britt Reid says she’s now awake.

Tiffany Verhulst, who has been posting updates for the family shared the news Monday on 5-year-old Ariel Young’s GoFundMe page, which has raised more than $480,000.

Ariel was with her mother, who was helping a relative who had run out of gas, when the crash happened just after 9 p.m. Feb. 4 near Arrowhead Stadium. Ariel was critically injured while her 4-year-old cousin suffered non-life-threatening injuries.

Reid is under investigation for suspicion of driving impaired. No formal charges have been filed.

While there are no names in the crash report, sister station WDAF obtained court documents last week that match the details of the crash and say that Britt Reid told officers he was driving the pickup truck involved in the incident, one noting that his eyes were bloodshot, and he had a moderate odor of alcohol. Britt Reid told the officer he had between two and three drinks and was on a prescription for Adderall.

The officer conducted an initial and full sobriety test and saw four clues of impairment. Officers requested and received a search warrant to draw Britt Reid’s blood.

The Chiefs confirmed last week that Britt Reid is no longer employed by the club. He had been placed on administrative leave through the duration of his contract, but that contract has expired.

Kansas City police say the investigation will take at least a month to finish. As part of that, blood test results to determine if Reid was driving impaired will take four to six weeks or more.

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Carterville without water due to main break

CARTERVILLE, Mo. – The City of Carterville is working to fix a broken water main amid freezing cold conditions. The break has left city residents without water.

Officials say the break happened around 10:00 p.m. Monday night near Pine and Main St.

Crews are on scene, but there’s no word on when water will be restored.

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News to Know (2/16/21)

WASHINGTON, D.C. – The weather caused cancellations and delays of coronavirus vaccine appointments across the U.S. The CDC says nearly 53 million doses have been administered out of just over 70 million distributed. Around 14 million people have been fully vaccinated. Health experts say there could be a surge in cases from variant strains of covid-19 in the coming weeks.

JOPLIN, Mo – We need to conserve power all across the area, to help utility companies and each other. The southwest power pool which has dozens of member utilities including the Grand River Dam Authority, Evergy, and Liberty Utilities, is asking those members to begin emergency electricity reductions in order to reduce the load on the network. However, the demand has gone beyond what electricity is available, and now, rolling blackouts are being implemented area-wide to ensure a total failure doesn’t happen.

MIAMI, Okla. – Through the winter storm, Ottawa county residents are coming together to help those in need. New Hope Christian Church in Miami has opened its doors and started an emergency shelter. The shelter has been open since Friday offering three meals and a warm place to sleep.

JOPLIN, Mo. – Joplin police say a shooting victim is dead. Officers say they responded to the Motel 6 on Rangeline in Joplin for a call of “shots fired”. When they arrived they found 43-year-old Matthew Painter of Joplin with multiple gun shot wounds. He died later at the hospital. Authorities say the case is under investigation and that the man who police beleive to be the shooter is cooperating with the investigation. Police have not arrested anyone in the case.

What are your favorite activities to do on a snow day? http://koamnewsnow.com/vote

 

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Spire asks it’s natural gas customers to limit use

PRESS RELEASE –

ST. LOUIS (Feb. 15, 2021) — With natural gas supplies impacted across the Midwest, Spire is implementing an emergency curtailment plan in their service areas across Southwest Missouri. Spire is asking customers to reduce usage immediately.

To prevent system outages due to frigid weather conditions, Spire is asking customers to turn thermostats as low as they can comfortably tolerate and to minimize the use of any other natural gas appliances over the next 48 hours.

“We don’t want to alarm people, but we don’t want to surprise them,” said Scott Carter, Spire Missouri president. “Our operations teams are closely monitoring the situation and we are working around the clock to keep customers safe.”

In addition, Spire is asking commercial and industrial customers to reduce their gas usage at facilities to minimum levels necessary to protect buildings and inventory. This request does not apply to hospitals, nursing homes, essential food processors, and other human needs applications.

“Working together as a community, we can do our best to keep gas pressure levels up and keep homes warm for everyone,” said Carter.

For more information on ways you can do your part and help conserve energy during these extreme conditions, go to SpireEnergy.com/ColdWeather.