A Birdseye man was airlifted to an Evansville hospital following an SUV vs scooter accident last night.

Just after 6:10 last night, Dubois County Sheriff’s deputies were called to an area at the intersection of State Roads 64 and 145 in Birdseye. Deputies say 23-year-old Zach Russell was riding a scooter westbound along State Road 64 when he tried to turn south on State Road 145 in front of an oncoming vehicle for an unknown reason.

The oncoming vehicle driven by 25-year-old Clarissa Neal tried to avoid the scooter, but could not and hit it with the front passenger’s side of her vehicle. The impact threw Russell off of the scooter.

Russell sustained possible head and leg injuries. He was lifeflighted to St. Mary’s Hospital in Evansville for treatment. Meanwhile, Neal was taken by ambulance to Memorial Hospital for treatment of chest pain.

Deputies say this accident is still under investigation. The Birdseye Volunteer Fire Department, Memorial Hospital EMS, Indiana State Police, a wrecker from Berg’s Garage, St. Mary’s Lifeflight, and Dubois County Dispatch all assisted.

Local health officials are now getting prepared in the event that the Ebola outbreak reaches Southwestern Indiana.

Yesterday evening, a group of more than 40 emergency management and health care personnel from Dubois and surrounding counties met at the Medical Arts Building Conference Room at Memorial Hospital. The meeting was designed to be informative rather than panicked.

Now the meeting gave local health officials the chance to learn more about Ebola. Specific topics included how its transmitted and the correct use of Personal Protective Equipment (PPE). The group also reviewed the most up-to-date information from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC) and talked more about what needs to be done if a suspicious case were to arise.

In a news release, Dubois County Health Department Administrator Donna Oeding says the meetings will continue as updates are given by the CDC. She emphasizes that groups are preparing and there is no panic at this point.

Kimball International has chosen its leadership for the foreseeable future.

During yesterday’s annual meeting, shareholders of the Jasper-based company elected all 10 nominees to serve on the Board of Directors. Folks were elected to serve 1, 2, or 3 year terms to represent the company’s Class A shareholders. Terms go until the next Annual Shareholders meeting or until a successor is duly qualified and elected.

Douglas Habig, Timothy Jahnke, and James Thyen were elected to 1 year terms on the board. 2 year term appointees were Donald Charron, Patrick Connolly, and Kimberly Ryan. Finally, Robert Schneider, Geoffrey Stringer, and Christine Vujovich were elected to 3 year terms. For Class B shareholders, Thomas Tischhauser was elected as a Director for a 1 year term.

Also yesterday, Class A shareholders ratified an advisory vote to approve compensation for executive officers. They appointed Deloitte and Touche as the company’s independent registered public accounting firm for next fiscal year.

In additional business, the company declared quarterly dividends for stock. It will be 5 cents a share for both Class A and Class B common stock. That will be payable on January 15th of next year to shareholders of record as of Christmas Eve of this year.

On a final note, yesterday also marked a special celebration at Kimball. The company hosted a retirement event for outgoing chairman Douglas Habig and president/CEO James Thyen. Habig and Thyen are both retiring later this year. Jasper mayor Terry Seitz presented both of them with a key to the city as part of the celebration.

Leadership for the new Holy Trinity Catholic school has now been announced.

In a news release, Father Gary Kaiser says Sally Sternberg has been chosen to serve as the principal of the new school. The assistant principal will be Michelle Brandle. Father Kaiser is the pastor of Precious Blood Parish in Jasper and St. Mary Parish in Ireland. He is serving as Bishop Charles Thompson’s delegate for school administration.

A native of New Palestine, Indiana, Sternberg earned her undergraduate degree in secondary education Sally Sternbergfrom the University of Evansville. Her primary focus was in mathematics and chemistry was her supporting focus. Sternberg also studied abroad at Harlaxton College in Grantham, United Kingdom while working on her undergraduate degree. She earned her master’s degree in teaching and her administrative licensure from Oakland City University.

Sternberg is currently in her 5th year as principal at Jasper’s Holy Family School. The school was honored as a national Blue Ribbon school last year. Past roles Sternberg has served in include mathematics teacher and department chair at Southridge High School and teacher for both Bosse and Harrison High Schools in Evansville.

Brandle is from Evansville. She earned her undergraduate degree in secondary education from the University of Southern Indiana. Her primary focus was social studies. She obtained her principal’s MIchelle Brandlelicensure through Indiana Wesleyan University. Brandle is now in her 3rd year as principal at Holy Family Catholic School. She came back to Southwestern Indiana in 2012 following her time as principal at St. Gerard Catholic School in Lima, Ohio. She also previously taught social studies and religion at Holy Redeemer and Resurrection schools in Evansville.

Now at the end of the current school year, Precious Blood, Holy Family, and St. Mary preschool will come together to form the foundation for Holy Trinity. The new school , which will serve all of Dubois County, is scheduled to open next fall.

Jasper fire crews were kept busy with the 2nd major residential fire in 4 days overnight.

Just before 8:40 last night, Jasper firefighters were called to a 4 plex unit at 550 Circle Pine Drive on a reported structure fire. Fire chief Kenny Hochgesang tells WBDC News that the kitchen area of the upstairs north apartment was fully engulfed in flames by the time firefighters arrived on scene. Hochgesang says those living in the unit were outside when fire crews arrived and had alerted other folks to the blaze.

Hochgesang says nobody was injured in this fire. He says everyone in the affected apartment and the surrounding units was able to get out safely.

Hochgesang says the fire was caused by a pan of grease left on the stove. With unattended grease pans now to blame for both of the recent Jasper fires, Hochgesang is now reminding folks to be on the alert:

Hochgesang says the upstairs unit sustained at least 30 to 40 thousand dollars worth of damage in the kitchen area. He says there was also smoke and water damage throughout the building, though the units are still livable for the most part.

The Jasper Fire Department responded with 5 trucks and 33 firefighters. They were on scene for just over an hour.

Jasper Police, Dubois County Sheriff’s deputies, Indiana State Police, and Memorial Hospital EMS also assisted.

Jasper officials are now mulling new ideas to prevent water quality issues such as the one that caused a 4 day city wide boil order last month.

Last night, Jasper utilties general manager Bud Hauersperger gave a report on the late September boil order. Hauersperger reported that the problems began on September 15th, 2 days prior to the boil order being issued. According to the report, the Jasper Water Filtration Plant noticed that day that the chlorine residual in the plant’s treated water was dropping to below normal levels. They also found that the potassium permanganate level was dropping in the raw water. The plant then added chlorine and the manganese as protocol dictated and the situation was rectified for the time being.

The problem returned the next morning (September 16th) when filter plant operators again discovered that manganese levels were dropping. More manganese was added and everything again returned to normal.

By the evening, the problem returned and had gotten worse. The night time plant operators noted high turbidity (cloudy water) in the plant’s filter clear well. The cause was unclear and after plant employee Tim Doersam took a water sample from his home and brought it in for testing, a boil order was determined to be necessary. Doersam then contacted gas and water manager Ernie Hinkle, Hauersperger, and Jasper mayor Terry Seitz. A group meeting then led to the issuing of the city wide boil order at around 3:30 am on September 17th. Doersam also contacted both the Indiana Department of Environmental Management and Midwestern Engineers for help.

Doersam says IDEM and Midwestern played a huge part in getting the water quality back to where it was supposed to be:

The cause of the issue was ruled to be an inversion of the Patoka River. That ruling was made by IDEM.

City officials say they are now looking into the possibility of several new technologies. These include better communication methods and using sodium based manganese in the plant rather than potassium based. Other technologies such as use of an ultra-low level manganese testing kit and testing 3 times a day instead of once a day have already been implemented.

Seitz says from a city standpoint, he is pleased with how the whole situation was handled by everyone:

Now this boil order was the first one in a long time for the city of Jasper. The last one occurred back in 2004 when the city switched its water over to the current water treatment plant.

The Dubois County Republican Party hosted a major rally aimed at getting people to the polls.

Yesterday, the local GOP hosted a candidate rally at their headquarters on the square in downtown Jasper. The event featured federal, state, and local candidates with the theme ‘Get Out the Vote’.

Now several candidates spoke briefly at yesterday’s rally. These included 8th District Congressman Larry Bucshon, state auditor Suzanne Crouch, and state representative Mark Messmer among others.

Don Hayes is the chairman for the Dubois County Republican Party. He says the event serves as a great opportunity for folks to once again meet with their candidates. Hayes says candidates have been out in the community a lot more in recent years, which he says is a good thing:

Hayes is also continuing to encourage folks to get out and vote early. He says votes will always matter regardless of whether or not there are a lot of races of interest to folks.

Meanwhile, all of the candidates who spoke expressed confidence in their positions heading into the November 4th election. Bucshon says on the national level, the Republicans are in good position to take back the Senate and to gain seats in the House.

Bucshon says those developments should set the stage for more to get done on the federal level of government:

Moving to the state level, Crouch says the recent efforts by her office to be more transparent have been received well by all Hoosiers. She says folks are coming around as time goes on:

On a final note, Messmer says his campaign for the District 48 state senate seat has gone well. He says Southwestern Indiana will likely continue down a more conservative path over time:

Yesterday’s stop in Jasper was the first of several planned statewide as part of the Indiana GOP’s ‘Experience and Transparency Tour.’ Candidates also stopped in Daviess, Gibson, and Knox counties yesterday.