Bill Harding: Warning about possibly tainted refillable propane tanks

Advertisement

— Not sure if this is Internet urban legend or not, but felt I should pass it on, so if it is true, it can make a difference.

"Meth cooks are getting the propane tanks from the exchanges at Wal-Mart, Kroger, etc., and emptying them of the propane. Then, they are filling them with anhydrous ammonia (which they now have a recipe for by the way). After they are finished with them, they return them to the store. They are then refilled with propane and sent back for you and me to buy. Anhydrous ammonia is very corrosive and weakens the structure of the tank. It can be very dangerous when mixed with propane and hooked up to our grills, etc. According to our presenter, you should inspect the propane tank for any blue or greenish residue around the valve areas. If it is present, refuse to purchase that one."

Just felt a duty to warn.

Summit brings drive for women veterans

WASHINGTON - An aggressive push to ensure women veterans receive the highest quality of care in VA medical facilities was pledged by Secretary of Veterans Affairs Dr. James B. Peake at a recent VA National Summit on Women Veterans' Issues.

Although VA already has services for women patients equal to those men receive, Peake told the audience of more than 400 women-veteran advocates, "We are reinventing ourselves by expanding our women-centric focus to initiate new programs that meet the needs of women veterans."

Citing the demographic shift that brings increasing numbers of women to VA for care and the need for changes, Peake announced formation of a work group to focus on women's needs in prosthetics and rehabilitation, hiring women's advocates in VA medical centers, developing quality measurements specifically for women patients, purchasing more state-of-the-art, specialized women's health care equipment, and expanding medical education in women's health for VA care providers. Summit attendees also learned that VA recently established a work group whose goal is to ensure every female veteran enrolled in VA care has a women's health primary care provider, especially to meet gender-specific needs.

The June 20 to 22 conference in Washington focused on how to ensure VA meets women-specific health needs and how to inform more women veterans of their VA benefits.

It was the fourth women's summit, which VA holds every four years. Summit co-sponsors included the American Legion Auxiliary, AMVETS, Disabled American Veterans and Veterans of Foreign Wars. Other assisting veterans groups included the Blinded Veterans Association, Military Officers Association of America, Paralyzed Veterans of America, the American Legion, Vietnam Veterans of America and Tri-West.

Vet centers coming to 39 communities

WASHINGTON - Combat veterans will receive readjustment counseling and other assistance in 39 additional communities across the country where the Department of Veterans Affairs will develop vet centers by fall 2009.

"Community-based vet centers - already in all 50 states - are a key component of VA's mental health program," said Dr. James B. Peake,

Secretary of Veterans Affairs. "I'm pleased we can expand access to bring services closer to even more veterans, including screening and counseling for post-traumatic stress disorder."

The existing 232 centers conduct community outreach to offer counseling on employment, family issues and education to combat veterans and family members, as well as bereavement counseling for families of service members killed on active duty and counseling for veterans who were sexually harassed on active duty.

Vet Center services are available at no cost to veterans who experienced combat during any war era. They are staffed by small teams of counselors, outreach workers and other specialists, many of whom are combat veterans. This Vet Center program was established in 1979 by Congress, recognizing that many Vietnam veterans were still having readjustment problems.

The centers have hired 100 combat veterans who served in Iraq and Afghanistan as outreach specialists, often placing them near military processing stations, to brief servicemen and women leaving the military

about VA benefits. VA's 2009 budget proposal seeks $20 million more than this year's budget for Vet Centers, to include operating and leasing space for the new centers. Eighteen of the counties that will have new centers already have one or more; the other 21 do not.

For information on these programs and/or other veterans' benefits, call or stop in the Moffat County VSO office at 480 Barclay St. (west of the Bank of Colorado parking lot).

Call 970-824-3246 or use the fax 970-824-7108. Our e-mail address is veterans@moffatcounty.net. The office is open from 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Monday through Thursday. Other times can be arranged by appointment only.

Bring a copy of your separation papers (DD-214) for application for VA programs and for filing at our office.

Comments

Requires free registration

Posting comments requires a free account and verification.