Craig briefs: Volunteer emergency radio group raises funds | CraigDailyPress.com

Craig briefs: Volunteer emergency radio group raises funds

Volunteer emergency radio group raises fundsVolunteer emergency radio group raises funds

Volunteer emergency radio group raises funds

The Colorado Amateur Radio Emergency Service, Northwest Region is a group of amateur radio (ham) operators who have volunteered time, skills and equipment to assist local governments and its residents with emergency communications services when requested, according to a news release.

Recently, The Memorial Hospital at Craig replaced an ambulance as part of an upgrade for its emergency medical personnel. The old ambulance would provide an excellent tool for Colorado ARES hams to retrofit to become a mobile communications vehicle. This type of vehicle most ham communicators can only dream of, and ARES seeks donations to help us secure it.

ARES will host a fundraising drive in an attempt to collect $3,000 dollars, which will cover the ambulance and the associated equipment needed to procure to retrofit it. Once procured and complete, Colorado ARES, Northwest region will have a public display of this vehicle for all to see. ARES also will be using the vehicle in several publicity gatherings in 2016 as well as testing its operation with served agencies. With donations, ARES hopes to have it complete and in service by March 2016.

Organized under the American Radio Relay League, Colorado ARES is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization under Colorado and Federal Statutes. Colorado ARES, Northwest Region is solely funded via donations, which are tax-deductible. All members in the service are local residents of Routt, Moffat and Rio Blanco counties.

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The Craig Daily Press welcomes photo submissions from community members. If you have photos you took while on vacation, camping or hunting or even photos of your child's birthday party, submit them to editor@CraigDailyPress.com. Photos must be at least one megabyte in size and clear, meaning blurry photos should not be submitted. Include the name of those in the photo, along with the date and place it was taken. The newspaper prefers recent and timely photos.

Wildlife/vehicle crashes increase by 15 percentWildlife/vehicle crashes increase by 15 percent

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Each fall, data shows an increase in wildlife-vehicle collisions on Colorado highways, according to a news release. With the first few storms of the season, wildlife have moved down from the high country as they do each year, and they continue to move to food and water sources, crossing highways along the routes. A majority of the collisions occur from dusk to dawn, when wildlife is more active and also more difficult to see.

In Colorado, there were 3,960 wildlife-vehicle collisions reported to law enforcement in 2014 (the most recent data), increased from 3,437 in 2013 and higher than the 10-year average of 3,590 (the highest amount of hits reported in one year was 4,013 in 2012). Of the 3,960 WVCs in 2014, 3,667 involved vehicle damage, 287 involved injuries and 6 involved human fatalities, according to CDOT Traffic & Safety Division.

"While CDOT constructs and implements many wildlife mitigation features in our known high-collision areas, there are things motorists can do to further reduce these incidents," CDOT Region 5 Traffic and Safety Engineer Mike McVaugh said in a statement. "Avoiding collisions with wildlife is not always possible, but we can all increase our reaction time by slowing down, especially at night, and being aware of animals near the roadsides."

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Collisions with animals can be both dangerous and costly. According to the Insurance Information Institute, animal collisions result in about 200 human fatalities per year.

Last year, AAA Insurance policyholders in Colorado involved in animal-related collisions had an average automobile insurance claim of $4,662. October, November and December are the worst months for animal collisions. October and November are especially dangerous during deer mating season.

As the days get shorter, drivers are more likely to be on the road at dawn and dusk, which are times of high animal activity. Animals may be more difficult to see as it gets darker earlier.

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