News

Stock up on vehicle breakdown supplies

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Unforeseen situations can crop up at any time. Anyone who has had a roadside breakdown in their car understands this. A flat tire or an engine malfunction is something no driver wants to experience, but those with a well-stocked vehicle emergency kit and breakdown strategy can get through most situations rather easily.

When will self-driving cars hit the road?

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Tech afficionados often know when the latest gizmos and gadgets are slated to hit the market and be made available to consumers. Anticipation tends to build around everything from the latest version of a popular smartphone to a new incarnation of a beloved gaming system. But perhaps no advancement in technology is as highly anticipated as the self-driving car. Industry experts note that the hype around self-driving cars, sometimes referred to as autonomous vehicles, has existed since 2004, when United States military experiments involving self-driving vehicles in the Mojave Desert garnered both attention and excitement. That anticipation and excitement waned as 2004 was left further and further behind in the rearview mirror, but the race to become the first auto manufacturer to build and offer driverless vehicles is still very much on. For example, in 2018 General Motors indicated its intent to make a fleet of self-driving taxis available in San Francisco by 2020. That did not come to fruition, though other auto manufacturers, notably Tesla, have indicated they have their eyes on potentially offering autonomous taxis in 2021. The COVID-19 pandemic complicated, and likely delayed, the arrival of self-driving automobiles, though it remains to be seen just how much the pandemic affected the arrival of driverless vehicles. A recent report from Bloomberg New Energy Finance noted that many auto manufacturers who have worked on self-driving technology had initially set their sights on deployment in 2021. However, lab closures and social distancing measures enacted in response to the pandemic may have made it highly unlikely that 2021 will be the year the world sees its first fleet of self-driving taxis hit the road.

Various medications can be dangerous for drivers

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Impaired driving claims thousands of lives every year. In fact, according to the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, nearly 30 people die in drunk driving crashes every day in the United States.

Signs of unsafe driving in older drivers

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A license to drive has long been symbolic of independence. Teenage drivers long for the day they earn their licenses and can take to the road without mom or dad riding shotgun, while aging drivers want to keep driving as long as possible so they can come and go as they please in their golden years.

Attendance decisions should be made locally

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Why is it so hard for government institutions to allow decisions to be made locally? For 10 months now, we’ve been dealing with the Governor ordering statewide, blanket mandates for restrictions related to the coronavirus pandemic. Within that same pandemic situation, we’ve been dealing with the Kansas State High School Activities Association (KSHSAA) board wanting to do statewide, blanket restrictions on crowd sizes at various sports and activities.

Colorful sacks

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We found an article in our files from the Clay Center Dispatch, dated April 1, 1985 that we thought would be of interest to readers. The article was written by Doris Salter. We have several colorful sacks in the museum.

Breeding tips for fall calving cows

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While icy winter mornings can be slick for people to walk, they can also present a risk for bulls breeding fall-calving cows, said Beef Cattle Institute veterinarians Bob Larson and Brad White during a recent Cattle Chat podcast.

Honey bee colonies lost in 2019

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Honey bee colonies for operations with five or more colonies in Kansas as of Jan. 1, 2020, totaled 4,500 according to the USDA's National Agricultural Statistics Service. The number of colonies in Kansas on April 1, 2020, was 7,500. During 2019, honey bee colonies on January 1, July 1, and October 1 were 4,500, 7,500, and 4,800, respectively. Honey bee colonies lost for operations with five or more colonies, during the quarter of January-March 2020, was 750 colonies or 11% lost.

COVID-19 vaccine sign up available

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The Clay County Health Department has posted a sign-up form for those interested in receiving the COVID-19 Vaccine when it becomes available. Kansas is currently in Phase 1 of the vaccine dispensing plan which includes health care workers involved in pandemic response and patient contact.