News in brief – 6/22/11

Published 11:12 am Wednesday, June 22, 2011

Fire at Jo-Lin damages small portion of wing

IRONTON — A lightning strike caused a fire in one wing of Jo-Lin Health Center on Clinton Street Tuesday evening.

Ironton Fire Chief Tom Runyon said the staff at the nursing home followed their fire protocol “to a tee.” No one was injured and all patients in that portion of the building were evacuated safely to another area of the facility.

“They did an excellent job of taking care of their people. I’ll say that right up front,” Runyon said.

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Runyon said lightening struck a vent housing on the roof, causing part of the roof to catch fire. The sprinkler system put out the fire. The wing sustained a small amount of fire damage as well as water damage from the sprinkler system.

The Ironton and Coal Grove police departments, Lawrence County Sheriff’s Office and Lawrence County Emergency Services assisted in the incident.

— Teresa Moore

Ironton Council to meet Thursday

IRONTON — At its regular meeting Thursday, the Ironton City Council will hear the second reading of an ordinance authorizing and directing Mayor Rich Blankenship to execute an agreement with E.L. Robinson Engineering regarding the Ironton Manhole Rehabilitation.

The $369,500 contract would cover the engineering costs for the project.

Ironton City Council will meet at 6 p.m. Thursday on the third floor of the Ironton City Center.

— Lori Kersey

Endangered species returned to WNF

NELSONVILLE — On June 15, the Wayne National Forest and several partners continued their commitment to reintroduce the American burying beetle (ABB) in Ohio. This year, 171 pairs of the ABB were released in a rural forested setting within Forest boundaries in Perry County.

This was the fourth year the group has reintroduced populations of this endangered species in Athens and Perry counties in southeastern Ohio. In the past four years, more than 750 ABB pairs have been released. The forest’s reintroduction effort will be finished next spring.

About 40 people joined the effort to help make the latest release a success. First, they laid out an area and dug several small holes on the forest floor. Next they placed dead rats into the holes to give the beetles an advantage in the wild and provide an ideal breeding location.

Workers then laid a male and female beetle in the hole, where the insects quickly sought cover under the dead animal. The group covered the beetles with cardboard and wire to help protect them from wild animals like raccoons.

Within two weeks of the release, researchers will return to the site to look for signs of breeding activity by checking for larvae and later, new adult beetles. Fortunately, since 2008, the beetles have shown signs of reproduction. Unfortunately, no signs of the beetles have been found the following year. Still, the group remains optimistic that the beetle is on the landscape doing its job, which is to rid the forest of small dead animals and to continue multiplying.