Orange City, Iowa– An Alton teen was taken to the hospital after an accident in Orange City on Wednesday, May 10, 2023.

The Orange City Police Department reports that at about 4:45 p.m., 51-year-old Todd Bradwisch of Orange City was driving a 2008 Ford pickup northbound on Lincoln Avenue Southeast in Orange City. They tell us that 16-year-old Austin Solsma of Alton was westbound on Highway 10 in a 2012 Chevy.

The report says that Bradwisch was making a left turn to go north onto Lincoln Ave Southeast. The front of Solsma’s car struck the middle passenger side of the pickup, causing it to flip onto the driver’s side.

The Orange City Ambulance took Solsma to Orange City Health System Hospital. Bradwisch reported no injuries.

Bradwisch’s Ford pickup sustained $8000 in damages, and Solsma’s Chevy sustained $5000 in damages.

Bradwisch was charged with failure to yield.

Ireton, Iowa — Several Sioux County projects and funds have received some money from a community foundation.

Sioux County Community Foundation officials tell us they recently awarded grants totaling over $126,000 in support of projects and programs throughout Sioux County. They tell us this brings the total grants awarded to over $1.6 million since the first grants were made in 2006.

Advisory Board Chair Maggie Landegent says, “The Sioux County Community Foundation is excited to be able to impact the quality of life and services for residents of Sioux County.”

Three organizations received the highest amount this round — $10,000. Those organizations were the City of Hospers for the South Side Park Ball Diamond Lights project, the Hawarden Fire & Ambulance Association for firefighting equipment, and the Sioux Center Fire Department for a Rapid Intervention Team or “RIT” Pack. (According to the International Association of Fire Chiefs, a RIT is a designated crew that will serve as a stand-by rescue team for personnel and be available for the immediate search and rescue of any missing, trapped, injured or unaccounted for fire fighter(s).)

Two organizations received $8000 grants. They were the City of Chatsworth for a park update, and the Granville Fire & EMS Association for a ventilation fan and wildland firefighting gear.

Here are the rest of the grants:

Organization Project Amount
City of Chatsworth City of Chatsworth Park Update $8,000.00
City of Hawarden Hawarden Swimming Pool $3,000.00
City of Hospers South Side Park Ball Diamond Lights $10,000.00
City of Ireton Community Electronic Sign $5,000.00
Dutch Heritage Boosters Security System for The Century Home $1,500.00
Falcon Wrestling Club Youth Wrestling Facility – wrestling mats $2,000.00
Granville Fire & EMS Assn Ventilation Fan / Wildland Gear $8,000.00
Hawarden Fire & Ambulance Association Hawarden Fire Equipment $10,000.00
Hawarden Police Department Axon Electronic Compliance Systems $7,500.00
Hawarden Senior Center Hawarden Senior Center Remodel $5,000.00
Heritage Village Heritage Village Town Center Gazebo $5,000.00
Hope Food Pantry Freezer And Shelving $1,800.00
Hull Bright Start, Inc Security System $6,500.00
Inspiration Hills Camp and Retreat Center Zip Line Expansion $5,000.00
Ireton Area Historical Society Kemper School Roof Replacement $5,000.00
MOC-Floyd Valley Sports Booster Club Middle School Batting Cages $4,000.00
Orange City Christian School Phase 23 Building Project $5,000.00
Rock Valley Recreation Department Pickleball Courts $6,000.00
Sioux Center Fire Department RIT Pack $10,000.00
Sioux Center Police Department Police Shields $7,500.00
Siouxland Adaptive Sports Adaptive Equipment Purchases $7,500.00
Trinity Lutheran Church AED-Trinity $1,500.00
Whispers of Love Hope & Joy Whispers Gathering’s Equipment $2,000.00
May 10, 2023 - 1:08 pm - Posted in News

Orange City, Iowa — A major previously unavailable to students at one Sioux County institution of higher learning will now be available.

Northwestern College officials tell us they are developing an engineering major, and hope to offer it in a little more than a year.

They tell us that Northwestern has hired someone they call “a distinguished engineering educator with experience in administration, teaching and research on three continents” to develop a new undergraduate engineering program that is set to launch, following accreditor approval, in the fall of 2024.

They say Dr. Young-Ji Byon will begin his role as the founding director of Northwestern’s engineering program in July, casting its vision, structuring the curriculum, hiring faculty, designing classroom and lab spaces, leading accreditation processes, and providing oversight. We’re told Byon is the associate chair of the department of civil infrastructure and environmental engineering at Khalifa University in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates, a top-100 engineering university. He helped launch the university’s civil engineering programs and led its efforts to secure ABET accreditation.

Northwestern says their program will offer a Bachelor of Science degree in engineering. Engineering concentrations currently being considered include mechanical, civil, computer, and electrical. The program will be designed to achieve ABET accreditation, for which it would be eligible upon graduation of the first cohort in 2028. Regulatory approval for the program is pending with the Higher Learning Commission.

Hospers, Iowa — Two people were flown to a Sioux Falls hospital after an accident at a Highway 60 grade intersection at Hospers on Monday.

According to the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office, at a few minutes after 4:00 p.m., 66-year-old Shawn Munns of Hawarden was driving a 2007 Peterbilt semi-tractor pulling a tank trailer southbound on Highway 60. They tell us that 17-year-old Beder Aguilon of Worthington, MN was driving a 1999 Toyota Corolla eastbound on 400th Street. The report says he failed to stop for the stop sign at Highway 60 and entered the intersection where the vehicles collided.

Damage to the Toyota was estimated at $1,500. Damage to the Peterbilt and trailer was estimated at $100,000.

The Hospers Ambulance took Aguilon to Orange City Area Health. He was later flown to Sanford Sioux Falls for further medical attention. The Sheldon Community Ambulance Team transported a passenger in the Toyota, 20-year-old Ernesto Martin of Worthington to Sanford Sheldon Medical Center. He was also later flown to Sanford Sioux Falls for further medical treatment. Munns did not report any injuries.

Aguilon was cited on a charge of failure to obey a stop sign and yield the right of way.

The Sheriff’s Office reports that the Hospers Fire Department, the Hospers Ambulance Squad, the Sheldon Community Ambulance Team, the Orange City Ambulance Squad, and the Iowa Department of Transportation Division of Motor Vehicle Enforcement assisted with the response to the accident.

May 10, 2023 - 1:04 pm - Posted in News

Boyden, Iowa — A Boyden teen was able to exit his vehicle after a crash, but the vehicle caught on fire.

According to the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office, early on Tuesday, May 9, at about 12:20 a.m., 17-year-old Sawyer Van Briesen of Boyden was driving a 2005 Ford F250 eastbound on 350th Street, three miles south of Boyden, when he lost control of the vehicle, which entered the south ditch and rolled. The vehicle caught fire and became fully engulfed, but Van Briesen was able to exit the vehicle safely.

No injuries were reported.

The Ford sustained approximately $17,000 in damage.

Van Briesen was cited for failure to maintain control of a motor vehicle.

The sheriff’s office was assisted by Boyden Ambulance and Boyden Fire Department.

(*Not pictured: Correctional Officer Gage Klein, Jail Kitchen: Theresa Solsma, Brenda Snieder.) Click to enlarge

Orange City, Iowa — This week is National Correctional Officers Week, and one area sheriff’s office tells us they will be celebrating their correctional officers this week.

According to Sioux County Sheriff Jamie Van Voorst, former President Ronald Reagan established this week in 1984 when he saw the need to recognize their contribution to society. He tells us the Sioux County Jail handles nearly 1,100 arrestees booked into the jail each year. He says their jail averages nearly 33 inmates per day.

Van Voorst says their correctional officers handle many tasks ranging from daily inmate care, keeping the jail staff and inmates secure, managing inmate medications, and serving meals each day to keeping the jail clean.

The Sheriff says, “To the men and women who work in the jail and see the side of those who are arrested at the Sioux County Sheriff’s Jail, we thank you; it’s one of the toughest, unseen jobs in public safety. I get to brag a bit; Sioux County has one of the best groups that get the job done safely with very little notice or thanks.”

Orange City, Iowa — A new technology on the popular app “Snapchat” might raise some concerns, or at least some eyebrows for parents.

Sioux County Sheriff Jamie Van Voorst posted on Facebook that basically it’s an artificial intelligence technology that is supposed to be able to answer many different types of questions, and usually does a pretty good job, in conversational English — similar to Chat GPT if you’ve ever used that. But the sheriff and his deputies had a few concerns. First of all, he tells us you can’t delete “My AI” from your Snapchat without paying a subscription. Plus, he says you can rename “My AI” to anything you want. And Van Voorst says that means that if parents are checking on their kid’s device, the kid may have changed the name of the AI to one of their friend’s names, so it wouldn’t even look suspicious to the parent. He says there’s another issue with that as well.

He says another concern is that the bot may give advice that is inconsistent with the family’s values, or just straight-up wrong, and completely opposite of advice the parent or another trusted adult would give.

He says there are other concerns from a school standpoint too.

He says everyone parents differently, but they just wanted parents to be aware that it’s out there.

May 7, 2023 - 2:17 pm - Posted in News

Sioux Center, Iowa — Authorities say a toddler was killed early Saturday evening in a motor vehicle accident that happened at a farm residence near Sioux Center.

According to the Sioux County Sheriff’s Office, the mishap occurred shortly before 6:00 Saturday evening (May 6th) at a farm residence on 420th Street, four miles southwest of Sioux Center.

Deputies say 30-year-old Christopher Maassen of Sioux Center, was driving a 2011 GMC Yukon on the property. He stopped to unhook a trailer; when he began driving away, he struck 20-month-old, Walker Maassen.

The toddler was transported by Sioux Center Ambulance to Sioux Center Health, where he was pronounced dead, according to authorities.

The Sioux County Sheriff’s Office was assisted by the Sioux Center Fire Department, Sioux Center Ambulance, Sioux Center Police Department, and the Iowa State Patrol.

Sioux Center, Iowa — A truckload of truck tires was destroyed in a fire on Thursday, May 4, 2023, near Sioux Center.

According to Sioux Center Fire Chief Dave Van Holland, at about 10:45 a.m., the Sioux Center Fire Department was called to the report of a tire pile fire at 2533 410th Street, five and a half miles west of the Pizza Hut corner in Sioux Center.

The chief says the fire department saw lots of black smoke as they approached the scene. He says they used water and lots of foam to fight the fire.

Van Holland says no injuries were reported. The Ireton Fire Department provided automatic aid.

He says the cause of the fire appeared to be a garbage fire that got out of control.

Chief Van Holland reports that the truckload of tires was destroyed, but nothing else of value was burned.

He says the firefighters who responded were on the scene for about an hour.

Photo caption: L-R, Kristi Landis, Director of College Advancement for Northwest Iowa Community College, Lyle Korver, CEO and General Manager of North West REC, John Hartog, Ph. D. President of Northwest Iowa Community College

Sheldon, Iowa — The Northwest Iowa Community College Powerline Program got a power boost recently.

NCC officials tell us the program recently received a $10,000 gift from the combined efforts of North West Rural Electric Cooperative and Basin Electric Power Cooperative.

They say that from the funds received, new lab equipment will be added to the NCC Powerline program. This donation reflects a combined total donation match from Basin Electric Power Cooperative’s Matching Donation Fund.

Headquartered in Bismarck, North Dakota, Basin Electric is the primary power supplier for Lyon County Rural Electric Cooperative, Osceola Electric Cooperative, North West REC, and Iowa Lakes Electric Cooperative.

Basin says their matching donations fund exists to provide charitable matching gifts to a wide range of programs for the greatest social and economic benefit to its members, employees, and the communities they serve.

NCC officials tell us the local rural electric cooperatives have possessed a strong relationship with Northwest Iowa Community College as it has supported the operational needs of the cooperative for many years. Many of the powerline workers that are employed by these entities have graduated from NCC’s Powerline program. For more information about NCC’s Powerline program or gifts to programs offered at NCC, you can call 800-352-4907.