Water Warning for Steele City, NE

A water warning has been issued by the Nebraska Department of Health and Human Services for residents of the Village of Steele City. Parents are advised that Infants who are six months or younger, nursing mothers, and pregnant women should not consume Village of Steele City water until further analyses indicate that nitrate levels throughout the system do not exceed 10 mg/l. The water should not be used to make anything to drink for the infants, including juice or formula. While some water conditions can be eliminated by boiling water, parents are being warned not to boil the water.  Boiling, freezing, or letting water stand does not reduce the nitrate level. Instead it can make nitrates more concentrated, because nitrates remain behind when the water evaporates.
Children who are exposed to high nitrates could become seriously ill and die if their sickness goes untreated. Shortness of breath and blue baby syndrome are symptoms of drinking water with high nitrate levels.  Pregnant woman who drink the high nitrate tap water are told to consult with a doctor.
Please contact the Village of Steele City for information regarding alternate water sources.

 

Warmer Days Bring Ticks to Nebraska

Ticks are generally found near the ground, in brushy or wooded areas. They can’t jump or fly. Instead, they climb tall grasses or shrubs and wait for you to brush against them. When this happens, they climb on and seek a site for attachment. Ticks can cause a number of diseases and some can be life-threatening.

Protect yourself from TICKS

  • Use a repellent with at least 20 percent DEET, picaridin, or IR3535
  • Dress in long-sleeved shirts, pants and socks when you’re outside.
  • Shower as soon as possible after being outdoors.

Do frequent tick checks after being outdoors and remove attached ticks promptly by grasping with tweezers as close to the skin as possible and pulling straight out. Then watch for signs of illness such as fever/chills, aches and pains and/or a rash.  If you have these symptoms, see your doctor immediately.

Call Public Health Solutions at 402-826-3880 with any questions or concerns.

National Prescription Drug Take Back Day

On Saturday, April 29, from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) will give the public its 13th opportunity in 7 years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. Bring your pills for disposal to the Jefferson County Law Enforcement Center at 606 3rd Street, Fairbury, NE. (The DEA cannot accept liquids or needles or sharps, only pills or patches.) The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.

Last October, Americans turned in 366 tons (over 730,000 pounds) of prescription drugs at almost 5,200 sites operated by the DEA and more than 4,000 of its state and local law enforcement partners. Overall, in its 12 previous Take Back events, DEA and its partners have taken in over 7.1 million pounds—more than 3,500 tons—of pills.

This initiative addresses a vital public safety and public health issue. Medicines that languish in home cabinets are highly susceptible to diversion, misuse, and abuse. Rates of prescription drug abuse in the U.S. are alarmingly high, as are the number of accidental poisonings and overdoses due to these drugs. Studies show that a majority of abused prescription drugs are obtained from family and friends, including from the home medicine cabinet. In addition, Americans are now advised that their usual methods for disposing of unused medicines—flushing them down the toilet or throwing them in the trash—both pose potential safety and health hazards.

For more information about the disposal of prescription drugs or about the April 29 Take Back Day event, go to the DEA Diversion website or call the Sheriff’s Office at 402-729-2284.

Controlled Burns in Kansas Temporarily Affecting Outdoor Air Quality

Extensive agricultural burns in Kansas have caused temporary air quality issues in our area. Winds carrying particles and gases from these fires can make conditions like heart disease, chronic bronchitis, or emphysema worse and trigger asthma attacks. While most people will not be affected, people with these chronic respiratory health conditions should pay special attention to outdoor air conditions and take appropriate action if necessary.

If you are concerned about air quality and your health, consider:

  • Staying indoors as much as possible
  • Keeping your windows and doors closed
  • Avoiding strenuous activity outdoors
  • Making sure that your vehicle’s air conditioner is set to “re-circulate”

If you experience excessive coughing, tightness in the chest, or chest pains, you should contact your healthcare provider immediately.

This kind of planned agricultural burning is common in the spring months. The closest air quality monitoring station is in Lincoln, where they track a variety of air pollutants that can affect our health, including carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, ozone, and particulate matter.

For more information, contact Public Health Solutions at 402-826-3880.

 

Is Your Vehicle Winter Ready?

In case you are stranded, keep a kit of emergency supplies in your car including:

  • Jumper cables: might want to include flares or reflective triangle
  • Flashlights: with extra batteries or  hand crank flashlight
  • First Aid Kit: remember any necessary medications, baby formula and diapers if you have a small child
  • Food: non-perishable food such as canned food, and protein rich foods like nuts and energy bars
  • Manual can opener
  • Water
  • Basic toolkit: pliers, wrench, screwdriver
  • Pet supplies: food and water
  • Radio: battery or hand cranked
  • Cat litter or sand: for better tire traction
  • Small shovel
  • Ice scraper
  • Clothes: warm clothes, gloves, hat sturdy boots, jacket and an extra change of clothes for the cold
  • Blankets or sleeping bags
  • Charged cell phone: and car charger

Some other tips are:

  • Keep your gas tank full or nearly full. Never travel with a low gas tank
  • Check windshield wipers and replace if needed
  • Keep windshield washer fluid full with a winter solution
  • Check or have a mechanic give your a car a “winter check-up” to make sure it is in good working condition and tires do not need replaced

 

For more tips on preparing your home and vehicles for winter go to https://www.cdc.gov/features/winterweather/index.html