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News and resources regarding COVID-19

News 10.12.20: 3 More C-19 Deaths in Woodbury County, Storm Impact, Greenfield in Siouxland and More

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SPM NEWS 10.12.20 - 4:32PM

Three more people have died in Woodbury County due to complications of COVID-19.  Siouxland District health says the deaths include a man and woman between the ages of 61 and 80, and an elderly man.  The death toll since the start of the pandemic is now 81 for Woodbury County. 

More than 100,000 Iowans have tested positive for the coronavirus according to the Iowa Department of Public Health.  More than three-quarters have recovered.

There were more than 400 cases added today and a total of 1,472 deaths.

Meanwhile, health officials in Dakota County report 54 new positive cases and 44 deaths.

The current positivity rate for Woodbury County is 15.3%.  Anything above 15% is one criteria for a school district to apply for on-line learning only.  The COVID-19 pandemic is expected to one of the topics discussed by the school board for Sioux City Community Schools tonight.  Listen for continuing coverage tomorrow during Morning Edition.

The number of South Dakotans with active COVID-19 infections surged past 6,000 Monday after 361 new infections were reported by the South Dakota Department of Health.

Two additional deaths were also reported Monday, bringing the total to 288. In a typical year, that would make coronavirus the seventh leading cause of death in the state.

Researchers at Johns Hopkins University report there were about 772 new cases per 100,000 people in South Dakota over the past two weeks, which ranks second in the country for new cases per capita. North Dakota ranks first at about 822 new cases per 100,000 people.

South Dakota Gov. Kristi Noem plans to provide an update Tuesday on the investigation into a fatal crash in which the state’s attorney general struck and killed a man with his car. 

Little information has been released in the month since Attorney General Jason Ravnsborg (rounds-berg) hit a man walking on a rural highway the night of Sept. 12 while driving home from a Republican fundraiser. 

The attorney general has said he thought he had struck a deer in the collision and only realized he had killed a man after returning to the crash site the next day.

Crop loss estimates from a rare wind storm that slammed Iowa in August have increased by more than 50%. The U.S. Department of Agriculture said Friday that the number of crop acres that Iowa farmers are unable to harvest has grown to 850,000 from estimates last month that 550,000 acres were lost because of the storm, known as a derecho. The Des Moines Register reports that the damage caused by winds of up to 140 mph was compounded in late summer with a drought that, at its peak, encompassed much of the state. The drought is again expanding after some September rainfall.

Harvest made rapid progress last week as Iowa farmers had nearly 6 days suitable for fieldwork. Today’s report from the U.S Department of Agriculture says one quarter of the state’s corn has been harvested, that’s almost 3 weeks ahead of last year and 10 days ahead of the 5-year average.

More than half (55%) of Iowa’s soybean crop is in the bin. This is the second time in the last 15 years that at least half of the bean crop was harvested by October 4th.

Farmers in south central Iowa are considerably behind farmers in the rest of the State with just 18% of their crop harvested.

Democratic candidate for U.S. Senate Theresa Greenfield campaigned in Siouxland today.  She made a couple of stops in Sioux City before touring a farm near Correctionville.   

She faces Republican incumbent Joni Ernst on November 3rd.  The two will meet face-to-face for a debate on Thursday night.  It’s their third and final debate in a close race.  A poll by the Des Moines Register/Medicom gave Greenfield a 3-percentage point advantage.  Other polls show the contest as a toss-up.

Ernst, who serves on the Senate Judiciary Committee was in Washington for the first day of hearing for Supreme Court nominee Amy Coney Barrett.