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September 6, 2018
Harvey County IndependentSeptember 6, 2018 Harvey County Independent

BREAKING: Marshall County Woman Killed On Highway 50

Posted 9/8/2018

THE passenger of this SUV was killed on Highway 50 after the vehicle collided with a semi early Saturday morning.THE passenger of this SUV was killed on Highway 50 after the vehicle collided with a semi early Saturday morning.HALSTEAD—A woman from Marshall County was killed Saturday morning in a wreck north of Halstead on U.S. Highway 50. It happened at about 6:45 a.m. roughly a quarter mile east of Halstead Road.

The woman was the passenger in a westbound GMC SUV that collided head-on with an eastbound semi tractor trailer. Her name has not yet been released pending notification to family.

The driver of the GMC was INVESTIGATORS work the accident scene about a quarter mile east of Halstead Road.INVESTIGATORS work the accident scene about a quarter mile east of Halstead Road.THIS second semi was not involved in the wreck but got stuck in the ditch after attempting a U-turn to avoid the scene. THIS second semi was not involved in the wreck but got stuck in the ditch after attempting a U-turn to avoid the scene. transported to Wesley Medical Center in critical condition. The semi driver was uninjured, according to Kansas Highway Patrol Trooper Steven Morris.

Morris said investigators were still trying to figure out exactly what had happened, noting that they had received differing accounts.

“We’re still trying to figure it out,” Morris said. “They just sideswiped each other. We’re just trying to figure out who crossed the center line.”

Morris did not know if the two people in the GMC had been wearing seatbelts, but he said the truck driver was.

Highway 50 between Halstead and Hertzler Roads was closed Saturday morning while investigators worked the scene. At 9:30, Morris estimated that it might take another hour before they were finished.

A second eastbound tractor trailer that was not involved in the wreck ended up getting stuck in the ditch and completely blocking the highway after attempting to navigate a U-turn to avoid the scene.

“He was just held up behind it and didn’t want to wait, so he decided to do a U-turn and got stuck,” Morris said. “So he had nothing to do with it.”

Morris added that the driver of this second tractor trailer had not witnessed the wreck happen. The semi was in the process of being towed out of the ditch at 9:30 a.m.

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Co-Op Donation Will Help Students Understand Food Sources

Posted 9/6/2018

JACK Queen, center, general manager of Farmers Co-op, presents Carrie Herman, left, executive director of the Kansas Learning Center for Health, and Tricia Weber, exhibit coordinator, with a donation for a new Farm-to-Family exhibit. JACK Queen, center, general manager of Farmers Co-op, presents Carrie Herman, left, executive director of the Kansas Learning Center for Health, and Tricia Weber, exhibit coordinator, with a donation for a new Farm-to-Family exhibit. By Jared Janzen

HALSTEAD—Many kids--and even adults--probably do not often think about the path their meals take to get to their dinner table. The Kansas Learning Center for Health wants to change that with a new exhibit, which is why Farmers Co-op is helping to fund.

"Food doesn't just come from grocery stores. It's actually grown by farmers all over the country," Farmers Co-op general manager Jack Queen said.

The new exhibit will be called Farm to Family and will incorporate iPad apps, a video simulator and a miniature field-to-consumer diorama.

"As part of our 100-year celebration, we had a dunk tank at Old Settlers this year and also raised funds from people we do with business with for the Learning Center's Farm-to-Family display," Queen said.

Queen presented the Learning Center with the $10,000 it had raised for the new exhibit last week. Learning Center Executive Director Carrie Herman said Queen had done a tremendous job with fundraising.

The Farm-to-Family exhibit will be interactive and demonstrate to children of all ages where their food originates and the path it takes to their table. It will show the process how corn, wheat and milk and processed and distributed.

According to the National Young Farmers Coalition, farmers over 65 now outnumber farmers under 35 by a margin of six to one. Only 2 percent of the U.S. population lives on a farm, and students do not have the same understanding of foods and food sources that they once did.

Queen said the Co-op was surprised by the success of its fundraising. Its original goal was $5,000, but after easily accomplishing this, it bumped this up to $10,000.  

To continue reading, please see this week's print edition.

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City On Hook For Noxious Weed Growth On Levee

Posted 9/6/2018

By Blake Spurney

HALSTEAD—Terry Jacob recently sounded the alarm bell to Halstead City Council about an invasive species taking hold along the city levee near 48th Street.

Jacob told Halstead City Council on Aug. 27 that he came across patches of Johnsongrass while he was out mowing for Lakin Township.

“They weren’t aware of it,” he said. “Not only weren’t they not aware of it, they were not aware of what Johnsongrass is.”

Johnsongrass is one of 12 noxious weeds listed by the Kansas Department of Agriculture. The non-native plant grows up to 8 feet high, and it can take over crop plants. The state recommends using cultural control practices and chemical control to limit its spread.

“In a good year, it can grow from 5 to 7 feet tall and take over an area,” said Rex Yohn, Harvey County noxious weeds director.

Yohn said the plant look similar to shattercane except Johnsongrass is a lighter shade of green.

“If it’s left unchecked, it’ll take over,” he said. “It’ll crowd everything out.

“It’s about like all the other noxious weeds. It’s non-native. It came in and took off. It can spread so aggressively.”

Jacob asked city officials who was responsible for vegetative maintenance on the levee. He eventually was told it was the city’s responsibility. He said the city maybe mowed some Johnsongrass down and sprayed it with Roundup.

“It’s just a cosmetic,” he said. “It burns it down.”

To effectively kill Johnsongrass, one must get to the rhizome, the underground root system. Yohn said Roundup worked on some Johnsongrass. The problem is that Roundup has been used so long that the plant is starting to build a resistance to it. He said he liked to treat Johnsongrass with Plateau, which doesn’t affect native grass. He said it was important to rotate herbicides because Johnsongrass was already building up a resistance to Plateau in some counties in southern Kansas.

To continue reading, please see this week's print edition.

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Fire District, Red Cross To Offer Free Smoke Alarms

Posted 9/6/2018

By Jared Janzen

BURRTON—Having one could save your life, and so Burrton firefighters want to make sure every home in and around Burrton is equipped with properly working smoke alarms. On Saturday, Sept. 22, residents of the Burrton fire district have the opportunity to receive a free smoke alarm and have it installed in their home.

That day from 1-6 p.m., volunteers from the fire district, the Red Cross, The Barn and KWCH will go home to home in groups of three to install the alarms for people. Those wishing to have an alarm installed must pre-register by calling 211 or visiting getasmokealarm.org.

EMS Director Cherie King said the Red Cross had approached the Burrton Consolidated Fire District No. 5 about the project.

“The Red Cross approached us and asked us to team up with them, and then KWCH got wind of it and decided they wanted to be involved,” she said.

King said within the first day of posting the event on the fire district’s Facebook page it was already drawing a lot of interest. They were worried they wouldn’t be able to reach everybody in the five allotted hours, and so employees of The Barn agreed to help install smoke alarms too.

She said she had no idea how many they’d install, but they have an unlimited supply thanks to the Red Cross. Volunteers will install multiple smoke alarms in homes as needed.

To continue reading, please see this week's print edition.

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