The Ottumwa Courier

Local News

December 27, 2012

Holiday season wraps up

Police, fire thankful for quiet holiday weekend; residents can start disposing of Christmas trees next week

OTTUMWA — As the holiday season wraps up with just one party left on New Year’s Eve, local law enforcement and city staff are thankful this year’s holidays have passed by without incident.

Deputy Fire Chief Cory Benge said there were no big incidents over the holiday weekend other than power lines down due to last week’s storm.

“Usually there are kitchen fires or some incidents with the greased turkey fryers where they don’t get the turkey quite thawed out, drop it in the hot grease and it causes a fire,” Benge said. “As it gets colder,  we’ll have attic fires, where people plug in space heaters, bring in too many amps and cause electrical fires in attics.”

Jody Gates, director of health, inspections and solid waste, said Christmas trees are part of normal trash collection during the month of January and should be placed on the curb next week.

Next week, as well as the week of Martin Luther King Jr. Day, trash will be collected on Thursday.

“Trees should be free of tinsel and ornaments,” Gates said. “Even if you put it in a plastic bag so you don’t drop needles all over your house, remove the bag and put it in the trash. We can’t compost the bag.”

Bridge City Sanitation will also collect artificial Christmas trees, though they are considered a bulky item.

“If you can’t fit in the trash can, call Bridge City and they will put you on the bulky item collection list,” Gates said.

Residents can call 641-682-1700 to be placed on the bulky item list.

“It was a fairly decent timing of Christmas when it comes to trash collection, actually,” Gates said. “We just picked up yard waste and bulky items on Tuesday, and we didn’t have a huge upheaval in the trash collection schedule for our customers, which is always wonderful.”

Benge said it’s important for everyone to get Christmas trees out of their house.

“Get them outside, get them on the curb. They are a big fire hazard,” he said.

Ottumwa Police Lt. Tom McAndrew said nothing exciting happened over the holiday weekend.

“There’s nothing real earth-shattering to report,” McAndrew said. “It seemed like an average year. The investigations unit wasn’t called out for anything other than a stolen vehicle.”

While McAndrew said intoxication arrests may increase around New Year’s Eve, they’re nothing extraordinary. He said staying safe and out of trouble during the holidays is pretty simple.

“Don’t get intoxicated and don’t drive while drunk,” McAndrew said. “Normally New Year’s is fairly quiet. Everyone has designated drivers. Hopefully I’m not jinxing us, but it’s usually pretty quiet.”

Benge also said Operation Sparky Claus was a success this year, with more gifts streaming in than the firefighters knew what to do with.

“We had people turning us away because they had too many toys,” Benge said.

The toys go to Salvation Army, Working Man’s Christmas, Hope House and other organizations, as well as to people who stop by the fire stations.

Since people also donated cash, Benge said the Ottumwa Fire Department reached out to the Ottumwa schools and bought winter coats for children in need.

“We’re going to make it bigger and better every year,” Benge said.

1
Text Only
Local News
  • 0418 OTT Five Things logo -T -L -M Five things to do in southeast Iowa this weekend OTTUMWA — It's a weekend of Easter celebrations, historic events and educational opportunities in southeast Iowa. Many people are gathered together this weekend, and the surrounding communities have scheduled events perfect for the whole family. 1. S

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418 OTT Joe Tafta bw photo -L -T -M Pursuing opportunities OTTUMWA — Joe Tafta follows the rules. The Simpson College junior hopes to be a U.S. marshal one day, so he’s careful about what he says and does. But not always. On the afternoon of April 1, Tafta says, he nearly got booted out of Dunn Library for m

    April 17, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0418 OTT OEDC director -T Guiding our growth OTTUMWA — An organization designed to help Ottumwa grow has found a new employee in Indiana. The Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation (OEDC) board has chosen Sharon Stroh as the group's new executive director. “We are confident she will hit the g

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0417 OTT Earth day color photo 1 -T -M Cargill celebrates Earth Day by educating ALBIA — In honor of Earth Day on Tuesday, April 22, employees from Cargill Eddyville and Cargill Pork are visiting with students at Grant Elementary and Lincoln Center in Albia all this week. On Wednesday the Courier caught up with them as they went

    April 16, 2014 3 Photos

  • 0417 OTT Saving Center color photo -T -L -M Hedrick building has friends HEDRICK — The community wants a civic center, and they've been willing to work for it. "I'd say we have 15 to 25 volunteers each time," Tommy Smith of Hedrick said. "These are all good people." Smith was volunteering his services at the Easter Brunch

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Southern Iowa farmers preparing for planting OTTUMWA — Even though the winter seemed to linger like Iowa was going through an ice age and cold and wet weather has highlighted the early spring, farmers are starting to get out to their fields to put down fertilizer and get fields ready for planti

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Camp Wapello fence photo -T -M -L Good fence irritates good neighbor DRAKESVILLE — For 82 years, Camp Wapello’s iconic entryway has welcomed people to peacefully coexist with nature. Now there’s a 400-foot barbed wire fence down the middle of the road. In February, Davis County Supervisors approved vacating of portion

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • Carrying bookbags a balancing act OTTUMWA — Permission slips. Notes from teachers. School activity announcements, birthday invitations, report cards and homework to sign. Kids bring home a lot of stuff. But is it done fairly? The school board this week was asked by ranking members of

    April 16, 2014

  • Van Buren supervisors deny hog confinement permit application KEOSAUQUA — A proposed swine building in Chequest Township didn’t receive a seal of approval from Van Buren County Board of Supervisors. Supervisors voted Monday to recommend to the Department of Natural Resources (DNR) to deny the permit. Supervisor

    April 16, 2014

  • 0417 OTT Beth Howard bw cover -L -T -M 'Ms. American Pie' tours with her new book ELDON — With many hours and countless miles on her RV "The Beast," Eldon's pie lady, Beth Howard, is celebrating the release of her new book with a tour of southwestern states. Howard's second book, "Ms. American Pie: Buttery Good Pie Recipes and Bol

    April 16, 2014 2 Photos

Photo reprints


Obituaries

Facebook
E-edition