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Sunday, February 28, 2021

WCBI NEWS AT SIX - 12/08/2020

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WCBI NEWS AT SIX - 12/08/2020
WCBI NEWS AT SIX - 12/08/2020
WCBI NEWS AT SIX - 12/08/2020

Show open show open show open show open good evening, everyone.

Firefighters are trying to determine what caused a fire at cooper tire manufacturing plant today.

You can see black smoke filling the sky after the fire broke out late this morning.

Managers there say there are no injuries.

And, all employees were safely evacuated.

The fire appears to be contained to one area of the plant.

Fire fighters have remained on the scene much of the day.

There is no word on how the fire began, or when cooper tire will safely resume work at the plant.

A former columbus city official has returned hundreds of thousands of dollars to taxpayers.

State auditor shad white says his office has recovered nearly 243 thousand dollars from former cfo milton rawle.

Rawle was indicted for embezzlement back in august.

He's accused of taking nearly 290 thousand dollars between december 2016 and december 2018.

Prosecutors allege rawle electronically transferred funds to his personal bank account.

A demand was issued to rawle showing he owes more than 354 thousand dollars.

He still faces the criminal charges.

White says his office has recovered more than 444 thousand dollars in stolen or misused public funds.

Top first look stinger temperatures will slowly warm up temperatures will top top top first look stinger temperatures will slowly warm up over the next several days with highs back into the mid 60s for the second half of the week.

Sunshine will continue for now, but showers are likely friday night into saturday before another cool- down.

Tuesday night: mostly clear and cold once again.

Temperatures will fall to the low 30s with a light southerly wind.

Wednesday- thursday: sunshine will continue for wednesday and thursday as temperatures continue to warm up.

Highs will be in the mid 60s, but overnight lows will remain cold with temperatures in the 30s each morning.

Friday-saturday: while most of friday will be dry, showers will begin to move in after sunset and continue overnight friday into saturday.

Most indications are that the bulk of the rain will be gone by lunchtime saturday, but some showers are the mississippi state department of health is reporting a high number of covid-19 deaths, as cases continue to surge.

There are one thousand 732 new positive test results across the state and 56 deaths.

The seven day rolling average in mississippi is above 18 hundred.

One thousand 188 people are hospitalized in mississippi with confirmed or suspected coronavirus symptoms. 287 of those people are in i.c.u.

More than 136 thousand people in the state are presumed recovered from the virus.

This means there are over 27 thousand presumed active cases in the state.

In the wcbi viewing area, lee county has the most new cases today with 81.

Lowndes has 67, pontotoc has 59, monroe has 51, union has 43, and oktibbeha is reporting 29 north mississippi medical center opened its doors to the media and local elected officials for a first-hand look at the ways the hospital is taking care of their covid-19 patients.

Wcbi news's stephen pimpo joined them on that tour and has the story.

"this is a world class facility.

We're lucky to have a facility like this in northeast mississippi."

North mississippi medical center is the largest rural hospital center in the united states, serving 24 counties in north mississippi and northwest alabama.

The 44 beds at the facility designated for covid patients stay full nearly every day.

"as you know, our hospital systems across mississippi, it's my understanding they're at full capacity so this hospital has tremendous flexability.

They can add capacity if needed."

The hospital has received 76 million dollars in federal funding and about 6 million dollars from the state of mississippi through the cares act to respond to the pandemic.

"we're looking for every clinical resource we can find to help support our healthcare team and the capacity needs we have within our healthcare system."

Some of the money bought equipment, such as ventilators and negative pressure rooms. but ceo shane spees says their greatest concern is financial support for staff as the whole country deals with a shortage of healthcare workers.

"we may have 250- 260 staff members any given day during covid because of infection rate or exposure."

He says close to 5 million dollars have gone towards offsetting staffing expenses.

Another way the hospital is addressing the staffing concern is by focusing on reducing the exposure.

Nearly 6 million dollars has ben used to install patient monitors outside every room in the covid unit.

"we can monitor vitals outside the room, we can monitor equipment outside the room, we can monitor the patient from outside the room."

However, spees reminds patients that financial resources can only get them so far.

"the wearing of the mask, the social distancing, the frequent washing of hands, that's the most effective way we have today to fight this pandemic."

In tupelo....stephen pimpo...wcbi news.

North mississippi medical center currently has 41 coronavirus patients, including 9 in icu.

So far...hospital officials say none of their staff have contracted the virus from working in their covid ward.

Local healthcare workers say there are no more icu beds in mississippi and now is the time to cancel plans and stay home.

But the surge of covid-19 patients isn't just affecting those in icu... our cash matlock joins us with more on how the virus is hurting non- critical patients as well.

"we are in a critical stage and i do believe that it will only get worse."

Dr. dustin gentry is the chief of staff at winston medical center.

He says this year is unlike any he's ever seen.

"this is not the flu.

We've never had icu beds and critical resources being absorbed by the influenza virus."

The numbers are high this week... but gentry says we aren't even seeing the worst of it.

"the glut on hospital resources that we're utilizing and seeing is not due to thanksgiving because thanksgiving was only 7 days ago."

Winston county emergency management director buddy king says the problem isn't just in the icu.

"we're to the point now that the state of mississippi does not have any icu beds, and while that may be a news headline, the other fact you have to consider with that is, people that need medical care less than an icu bed, they're receiving care from facilities and individuals that are already taxed to the max."

"the sickest patients are those that have respirtory symptoms, but there's been stroke and heart attacks associated with this virus, pulmonary embolisms, severe gi symptoms, and lots of other milder symptoms."' both men agree that there are steps that can be taken to lessen the overwhelming number of covid patients.

"i think we're all looking for guidance, and we look to our state agencies for that guidance.

Locally, what we can do and what we know we need to do, is to wear masks.

We need to practice social distancing, good hygiene.

Those are things that each one of us can do to lessen the rates of transmission."

"the best place to go from here, is for everybody, from the top all the away down, to get on the same page and cancel things that aren't necessary."

King says it's also hard to transfer icu patients out of state because neighboring states are dealing with similar issues.

The first vaccine is expected in mississippi next week.

In the first round of doses, there will be enough vaccine for 25,000 people.

All of these are expected to go front line, critical care workers at acute care hospitals across the state.

Dr. thomas dobbs, the head of mississippi's department of health says he plans to take the first dose.

State health care administrators have a plan to provide doses to every acute care hospital - that is every hospital with critical care and trauma units.

The amount each hospital receives is based on the number of people that each hospital has reported as critical care workers.

The vaccine, developed by pfizer, is given in two stages and requires a specific storing temperature.

In week two, dobbs says they hope to add additional health care workers and make the vaccine available at long term care facilities.

They are also planning drive through vaccination locations for health care workers who do not receive the shots at their jobs.

It will be spring of 2021 before there are enough doses available for wider spread inoculation.

Top mississippi lieutenant governor delbert hosemann says there are a lot of uncertainities facing lawmakers as they prepare to start a new session in less than one month.

Lt governor delbert hosemann says a strong economy, despite covid 19, has helped keep the state on solid financial footing.

However, hosemann pointed out the increase in unemployment, because of covid 19, has made it tough, not only on state residents, but also on the budget.

Hosemann is hopeful that more people will get back to work, especially with the governor's promise to not allow any more business shutdowns in mississippi.

"what's happened in mississippi is we've put three point one billion dollars in unemployment compensation, from maybe may to september, so that's running out for our people and we need to have our people get back to work, that's why i'm pleased to see construction here and people working.

When they get back to work we will have a better chance of knowing in january, february march how we will be affected.

If we have the same kind of unemployment prior, it will be very difficult on our budget."

Hosemann and house speaker philip gunn have both said that a teacher pay raise and a tax cut are possible during the 2021 session, which begins january fifth.

The lieutenant governor made his comments as he was meeting while he was in tupelo for meetings with economic development leaders.

Stinger "toyota team members collect more than 2,000 toys for the salvation army's angel tree program.

We'll have that story coming up on wcbi news" hundreds of children throughout north mississippi will have gifts under the christmas tree, thanks to the salvation army and toyota team members.

Wcbi's allie martin has more.

Toyota team members took time from their lunch break on tuesday to load bicycles, games , dolls, action figures and other toys on to the salvation army's truck.

"to be exact i think we're at about 2428 toys."

For more than a month now, employees at the blue springs plant have brought in toys for the annual toy drive.

The toys will go to the salvation army's 'angel tree ' program.

The program helps provide christmas gifts for children, whose wish lists are placed on the angel tree, and adopted by community members.

For six years, workers at the toyota blue springs plant have held a toy drive for angel tree kids.

It is one of many community outreaches involving toyota team members.

"we make vehicles here, but we also feel our company can be a vehicle for change, and our team members take a lot of pride, not only building the greatest vehicles for our customers, but also providing a service to our community that supports those who are in need."

Standup bridge every year, for a variety of reasons, there are angels, or children, who don't get adopted, but every year, the toyota team member toy drive, fills in those gaps.

"plus, any kind of emergency needs that do start to happen, we take it case by case, but once again, these are the gifts that do help meet that need as well."

Major ray morton knows this year has been tough for everyone, but he is thankful for the support from those who are determined to make sure children have a memorable christmas.

"it's been wonderful to be able to see that our angel tree is doing so well, even during these covid times, as people still recognize there are people in need.

" the truckload of presents will be taken to the furniture market where volunteers will sort them ahead of next week's distribution day.

In blue springs, allie martin, wcbi news the gifts will be distributed next tuesday to parents and guardians of angel tree kids.

Stinger weather open springs, allie martin, wcbi news the gifts will be distributed next tuesday to parents and guardians of angel tree kids.

Stinger weather open temperatures will slowly warm up over the next several days with highs back into the mid 60s for the second half of the week.

Sunshine will continue for now, but showers are likely friday night into saturday before another cool- down.

Tuesday night: mostly clear and cold once again.

Temperatures will fall to the low 30s with a light southerly wind.

Wednesday- thursday: sunshine will continue for wednesday and thursday as temperatures continue to warm up.

Highs will be in the mid 60s, but overnight lows will remain cold with temperatures in the 30s each morning.

Friday-saturday: while most of friday will be dry, showers will begin to move in after sunset and continue overnight friday into saturday.

Most indications are that the bulk of the rain will be gone by lunchtime saturday, but some showers are possible through the rest of the day.

Highs will be in the mid 60s each afternoon with morning lows in the 40s and 50s.

Sunday-tuesday: the forecast is still a bit up in the air for the second half of the weekend and early next week.

While most models have us dry for sunday, monday, and tuesday, there are some indications that we could see some leftover rain on those days.

For now, we're going to bet on being dry, but the forecast could change.

We will see cooler air move in regardless with highs back into the low 50s.

To get the latest forecast anytime, download the wcbi news app or visit our website at wcbi.com/weather.

You can also get the latest weather updates on facebook, twitter, and instagram.

Temperatures will slowly warm up over the next several days with highs back into the mid 60s for the second half of the week.

Sunshine will continue for now, but showers are likely friday night into saturday before another cool- down.

Tuesday night: mostly clear and cold once again.

Temperatures will fall to the low 30s with a light southerly wind.

Wednesday- thursday: sunshine will continue for wednesday and thursday as temperatures continue to warm up.

Highs will be in the mid 60s, but overnight lows will remain cold with temperatures in the 30s each morning.

Friday-saturday: while most of friday will be dry, showers will begin to move in after sunset and continue overnight friday into saturday.

Most indications are that the bulk of the rain will be gone by lunchtime saturday, but some showers are possible through the rest of the day.

Highs will be in the mid 60s each afternoon with morning lows in the 40s and 50s.

Sunday-tuesday: the forecast is still a bit up in the air for the second half of the weekend and early next week.

While most models have us dry for sunday, monday, and tuesday, there are some indications that we could see some leftover rain on those days.

For now, we're going to bet on being dry, but the forecast could change.

We will see cooler air move in regardless with highs back into the low 50s.

To get the latest forecast anytime, download the wcbi news app or visit our website at wcbi.com/weather.

You can also get the latest weather updates on facebook, twitter, and instagram.

Stinger ole miss mens hoops finally hitting the hardwood... next in sports kermit davis on how the setback impacted his team spx it's been over three weeks since ole miss head men's basketball coach kermit davis tested positive for covid-19... since then the team had to either postpone or cancel it's first four matchups... now the rebels will be the last power five program to tipoff this season... but tipoff is finally here for kermit davis' crew... they'll be hosting jackson state thursday at 7 in the opener..

The last few weeks were tough for ole miss... davis was watching practices on zoom and after he recovered he was able to work out each player individually... he says his guys are ready to go... his players have been making the most out of their situation... and despite missing a lot of time they're looking ahead and will get the most out of it but it was a bit of a tough adjustment... 00-05 :33-:38 davis says: 21 days for me not coaching our team is 21 days and it's this time of year when you're trying to open up and trying to play.

There's a lot of things you're trying to go through and then on top of that for 14 days you're in a pause.

Their energy is good and they're excited to playa nd i am excited for them.

Knock on wood hoping everyone is good on thursday.

Vaughn says: i don't think it set anyone back really.

Gave us rest action on the legs and i don't think anyone has memory loss and we know what we're doing with scouts.

It's time to get to it.

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Let's take a look at some of the games to watch this week... not pictured is the ole miss women's basketball team who are tipping off against alcorn state at six o'clock on sec network plus later ben howland's crew is hosting jackson state at 8 o'clock and you can watch that one on the sec network... jackson state will be taking on ole miss thursday at 7 in the rebels opener.... and then on saturday mike leach and the bulldogs return to davis wade stadium to battle gus malzahn... bo nix and the auburn tigers... it's a 6:30 kickoff and you can watch on the sec network as well... mississippi state football with two remaining games of the 2020 slate... they host auburn this weekend followed by missouri on the 19th..

Head coach mike leach's objective this season is clear... to play in as many games as possible to get these young guys as much experience as he can... he also mentioned that he's hoping for a bowl game bid..

Leach has played a lot of freshman this year... one of those has been quarterback will rogers... he stepped in a few weeks ago after kj costello got hurt and he's been pleased with his progress... 00-05 leach says: he;s gotten progressively better and he has to keep improving.

Really just overall there's not just one big thing he just needs to be more polished, quicker smoother and precise and do it more times in a row really and he's played quite courageous for a guy his age.

When we return...chief meteorologist keith gibson will have a last look at your forecast.

You are watching wcbi news at six.

Last look stinger when we return...chief meteorologist keith gibson will have last look stinger last look last look stinger last look last look stinger last look last look stinger last look last look stinger last look

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