About the author  ⁄ Doug Jenkins

VIDEO: Mobile Phone App Aiding Hancock County Volunteer Fire Departments

2/15/17 – 11:22 A.M.

Last summer all Hancock County volunteer fire departments began using a new app to track who is responding to emergencies. After eight months of using the “I Am Responding” app, Hancock County EMA Director Lee Swisher says they like what they see…

Audio: Lee Swisher

Swisher says that helps volunteer fire departments make more informed decisions about whether they should wait for more people to get to the fire station, or head to the emergency right away.

Swisher says the app not only lets departments know who is responding to an emergency, but also provides responders with critical on scene information on their cell phones…

Audio: Lee Swisher

Swisher says every agency using the app shares the information. He adds that means less confusion at the scene of an emergency.

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2/15/17 – 5:03 A.M.

Feeling sick today? You’re not alone. Area health officials tell the Courier respiratory illnesses have been an issue this winter. Colleen Abrams is an infection preventionist at Blanchard Valley Health System. She tells the newspaper they’ve seen plenty of flu cases, but adds RSV, another respiratory ailment, is also making the rounds. Some people test negative for the flu and RSV but still have a respiratory infection.

Abrams says doctors have seen more flu cases this year, but the number is lower than it was two years ago. St. Rita’s Medical Center in Lima recently restricted visitors at the hospital because of the number of flu cases. Blanchard Valley Health System hasn’t taken that step yet.

Health officials say it’s not too late to get vaccinated against the flu this season. If you do come down with the flu, stay home. Abrams says you’ll recover faster, and will help stop the spread of the virus.

MORE: The Courier

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2/14/17 – 10:54 A.M.

ODOT has issued a travel note for drivers on northbound I-75 in Hancock County. The agency is closing the rest area just south of Findlay Wednesday afternoon. Crews are repairing the water system at the stop.

ODOT says the parking area will stay open and they’ll put portable toilets at the location for the day. The repair work is set to begin at 2 p.m.

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2/14/17 – 10:36 A.M.

The architect designing the Dorney Plaza renovation asked for a change in the deal Tuesday. RCM’s Jerry Murray explained a lot of work went into the recent redesign of the plan…

Audio: Jerry Murray

Murray says the deal includes contract administration fees. His request asks for money in the work phase of the contract to include allocations for those fees.

Murray says the change wouldn’t add any cost to the project…

Audio: ZZ-Murray 2

Murray says the goal is to pay the administrative fees with the difference between the actual bid amount and the budget. He says even if there isn’t much left over, there is a commitment to getting the project done for under $600,000.

Murray expects the request to come up as a resolution at a future commissioner meeting.

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A one car crash killed one person and injured two others in Hardin County Monday afternoon. The Hardin County Sheriff’s Office reports the crash happened near McGuffey on County Road 110.

Jack Parkins was driving east on the road when he lost control of his car and overturned in a drainage ditch. Patrica Parr of McGuffey was a passenger in the car. EMS Crews took her to Lima Memorial Hospital where she later died. The crash injured Parkins and another passenger, Jeffery Jones.

Deputies are continuing to investigate.

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2/14/17 – 5:09 A.M.

It could be more expensive to go to the McComb swimming pool this summer. The Courier reports village council is considering raising admission prices. An agreement with the Northwestern Water and Sewer District means the village has to pay for the water at the pool now.

If the ordinance passes, a family membership for McComb residents would be $125 and $80 for a single pass. Daily admission would increase to $4.

MORE: The Courier

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2/14/17 – 4:50 A.M.

A four-car crash in eastern Hancock County injured one person Monday afternoon. The Hancock County Sheriff’s Office says the collision took place on U.S. 224 near Hancock County Road 23.

20-year-old Daniel Arbogast of Tiffin was driving east on the highway around 4:45 p.m. when he hit the back of a minivan driven by 20-year-old Van Williams of Tiffin. Williams’ van then hit an SUV, which spun and hit a semi.

Hanco Ambulance took Arbogast to Blanchard Valley Hospital for treatment of his injuries. The crash remains under investigation.

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2/13/17 – 7:36 A.M.

Bowling Green State University’s public TV station will stay on the UHF spectrum. The school announced last week WBGU will move from channel 27 to channel 22 sometime in the next 18 months. BGSU had the chance to sell its UHF frequency through a Federal Communications auction. They withdrew from the process last month.

UHF signals operate at a higher end of the TV spectrum. BGSU considered moving WBGU to the VHF spectrum if they sold their current frequency.

WBGU offers PBS programming. It serves close to 2 million people in Bowling Green, Findlay, Lima and other parts of northwestern Ohio.

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2/13/17 – 7:20 A.M.

Authorities in Wyandot County are looking into the death of a Wharton woman in Upper Sandusky. The Daily Chief-Union says officers found the body of 39-year-old Carrie Thiel in a home the 500 block of North H Street last Thursday.

No other details are available at this time.

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