September 2, 2014

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Ohio's first human cases of West Nile Virus reported PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, August 20, 2014 10:33 AM

COLUMBUS – Ohio’s first two human cases of West Nile Virus (WNV) in 2014 were identified Tuesday by the Ohio Department of Health (ODH). A 24-year-old female in Muskingum County and a 78-year-old female in Cuyahoga County have been hospitalized with encephalitis.

Encephalitis is an inflammation of the brain and is caused when someone is bitten by an infected mosquito. This is the primary way people get the West Nile Virus.

“We could possibly see a growing number of human cases of the West Nile Virus infection and positive mosquito samples throughout the state,” said ODH state epidemiologist Dr. Mary DiOrio. “Ohioans should remain vigilant and take all reasonable precautions to protect themselves against mosquito bites.”

ODH began accepting mosquitoes for identification and testing from our local cooperating agencies starting July 14. We are up to 120 positive West Nile Virus mosquito samples tested by the ODH lab plus another 10 positives reported by local health departments. The relatively low infection rates may be influenced by the low temperatures and rainfall this year.

“As infection rates are expected to increase, it is important to remind everyone to avoid mosquito bites and eliminate breeding sites,” said Dr. DiOrio.

Here are some tips to avoid possible infection from mosquito bites:

·  If you are outdoors between dusk and dawn when mosquitoes are most active, be sure to wear long pants, a long-sleeved shirt, shoes and socks.

·  Light colors are least attractive to mosquitoes.

·  Use insect repellent and follow the label directions.

Here are some tips to eliminate mosquito breeding sites near your home:

·  Remove water-holding containers, such as tin cans and unused flower pots.

·  Eliminate standing water.

·  Make sure all roof gutters are properly draining and clean.

·  Keep children’s wading pools empty and on their sides when they aren’t being used.

Approximately 80 percent of people who are infected with West Nile Virus do not show any symptoms at all, but there is no way to know in advance if you will develop an illness or not. Those who do develop symptoms usually do so between three to 14 days after they are bitten by the infected mosquito.

Learn more about the West Nile Virus on the ODH website at


Early harvest projections PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, August 20, 2014 10:21 AM

By JIM LANGHAM • Feature writer

The first glimpse for harvest weather this fall is looking slightly cooler and a little wetter than normal, says weather specialist Rick McCoy of Van Wert. McCoy said that while we are still several weeks away from harvest, there are no indicators that the trend prevalent through the summer is going to change drastically.

“There is some indication that things could warm up, at least briefly, for the last part of August,” said McCoy.

“The extended forecast into that period is calling for slightly above normal warming in the Midwest but still precipitation a little over normal.

“With temperatures running three to five degrees below normal in July, the summer is more than likely going to end up slightly below normal which is what the National Weather Service had predicted early in the spring,” said McCoy.

This past Monday, a major burst of precipitation moved through the county, dumping one to two inches of rain in many areas, with the heaviest precipitation early on falling in the northern parts of the county.

That was good, said Ohio State University extension agent Sarah Noggle, since that area had been a little drier than areas to the south.

“The condition of county crops is all over the board right now, although most are looking good or improving,” commented Noggle.

“Everyone seems to be picking up on the possibility of some wetness during harvest.

“We need to look at the economics of our crop this year,” continued Noggle.

“As for Monday’s rain, it’s good where it fell. That end of the county needed it. The consistent moisture that we’ve been receiving will help with the gooseneck and lodging problems that we had talked about a couple of weeks ago.”

In spite of the anticipation of cooler weather during harvest, McCoy said the freeze risk for the first freeze looks like about normal as wetter soils will keep night time lows up some.

McCoy noted that while many people believe that hot nights contribute to better corn, it appears that just the opposite could be true. He said that information he recently received states that corn actually has better yields in moderate temperatures, as long as there is sufficient moisture.

McCoy said that recent testing indicates that with high night temperatures, more of the sugars produced by photosynthesis during the day is lost; less is available to fill developing kernels, thus lowering the yield.

“One of the most common questions I am already being asked is, ‘what kind of winter do you think we’re going to have this year,’” said McCoy.

McCoy said that he daily confers with National Weather Service officials at Syracuse, Ind. and the consensus continues to be the same. If there is development of an El Nino, this winter could be quite different than last year. If there is no El Nino, the pattern is still quite similar to last winter.

“Early this spring, it looked like an El Nino was trying to form in the Pacific, but it has never really gotten its act together so far,” McCoy said.

“If there is an El Nino, our winters tend to be a little warmer and wetter,” said McCoy. “A lot of the main storms tend to go south of us, so things around here are usually less stormy.”


Library receives fraud ed toolkits PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, August 20, 2014 10:20 AM

Ohio Attorney General Mike DeWine announced last week that his office has sent Senior Advocate Fraud Education (SAFE) toolkits to more than 700 Ohio libraries. Paulding County Carnegie Library system was among those to receive the kits.

“We received the kit today (Aug. 15),” said Susan Pieper, PCCL director. “It is being processed. Two copies will be available for loan at the main library and one copy is being processed for reference and ‘in house’ use at the main library.

Autism safety shared at bus in-service day PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, August 20, 2014 10:18 AM


Feature writer

VAN WERT – This past Friday, Paulding County Sheriff Jason Landers and Cathy Ruiz, service coordinator for Paulding County Family and Children First Council, were invited to present autism safety training to a bus driver in-service day at Vantage Vocational School.

The title of the training session presented by Landers and Ruiz was “Autism 101: Characteristics, Behaviors and Simple Strategies Useful for Bus Drivers.”

Antwerp to apply for waterline grant PDF Print E-mail
Wednesday, August 20, 2014 10:14 AM


Progress Staff Writer

ANTWERP – Seeking funding for a waterline, concerns about manure dumping near the village and recognition to the fire and EMS department were all discussed at Monday night’s Antwerp Village Council meeting.

A resolution was passed as an emergency authorizing the village to apply to the Ohio Public Works Commission (OPWC) for funds to make capital improvements to the West Woodcox Street waterline.

Annual Health Aware Fair returns Sept. 6 PDF Print E-mail
Monday, August 18, 2014 4:33 PM

VAN WERT – The Annual Van Wert County Health Aware Fair is back and scheduled to return to the community on Saturday, Sept. 6 in Van Wert. This highly anticipated event will be held on the grounds of Van Wert Schools, located at 10708 Ohio 118. The fair will take place from 7:30 a.m.-noon, with a host of activities occurring throughout the morning.

This year’s 2014 Health Aware Fair is jam-packed with loads of family-friendly activities, health information, and giveaways. The expanded event will include free health screenings, and free treatments, all in addition to the invaluable continuation of the reduced-fee blood chemistry profile screening. Attendees will also receive coupons which can be used toward future wellness exams.

The cost for a blood profile screening is $45 for those who register prior to Sept. 4. The cost is $55 for all others, including walk-ins the day of the event. A 12-hour fast is required to perform the blood draw.

The American Red Cross will host a pancake breakfast the morning of the event. Individuals completing the blood profile screening will receive a free pancake breakfast. All others may purchase breakfast for $5.

Statewide Ford Lincoln and the Van Wert YMCA again invite the community to take part in the fight against cancer by participating in a “Warriors in Pink” 5K Run/Walk event. Registration for the event begins at 7 a.m. The 5K walk/run will begin at 8 a.m. The cost to participate is $25 if registered by Aug. 25. Day of the race the cost is $30. Registration is available at All proceeds from the event will benefit the Susan G. Komen Foundation.

The Health Aware Fair provides something for individuals of all ages. Good health is important to everyone. Come out; celebrate health and healthy living on Saturday, Sept. 6.

The Health Aware Fair is sponsored by the American Red Cross, Van Wert County Hospital and Van Wert Rotary Club. For current Health Aware Fair information, find this event on Facebook or visit the Van Wert County Hospital website at



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