Blue Hill Killing
(Blue Hill) – One person is dead; another was detained for questioning after a shooting in Blue Hill last evening. State police and emergency workers responded to the scene on Route 172 at about 6-o’clock last evening. State Police spokesman Steve McCausland reports to Star 97.7 that detectives do not believe the public is in any danger. Police did not release names or the circumstances of the shooting, but more information is expected today.
Bangor – Closures
(Bangor) – City officials in Bangor have pretty much shut down most businesses. In an emergency order issued this weekend, city councilors closed down all businesses that don’t provide essential services. Restaurants, like all others in the state, may only provide take out food, and that has to be delivered to the customer outside the restaurant. The order shuts down businesses like gyms, the Hollywood slots casino, even adult entertainment venues. The city council meets tonight to further discuss the response to COVID-19.
(Ellsworth) – The Jackson Lab may be on the front line in the fight against the Coronavirus. In a You Tube video posted by the lab, President Dr. Edison Liu said with help from the University of Iowa, the lab has produced a mouse that can get infected with the COVID-19 virus. Liu was a leading researcher on the SARS virus several years ago.
(Mapleton) – Another snowmobile death during the weekend in Maine, this time in Aroostook County. Warden Service spokesman Mark Latti reports to Star 97.7 that 25-year old Ben Buck Jr. of Mapleton died on ITS 76 when his sled missed a curve, went airborne and tumbled end over end. Buck was thrown from the snowmobile and died from the injuries. A friend found Buck after going to check on him when he failed to return. Firefighters were not able to revive him. His death is at least the 12th snowmobiling fatality in Maine this season.
(Local) The American Red Cross is down more than 150-thousand blood donations across the U.S. Spokeswoman Mary Brant urges Mainers who are feeling well and eligible to donate blood to make time to help the Red Cross. Brant emphasizes that the blood shortage could impact patients who need surgery, victims of car accidents and other emergencies, or patients fighting cancer.
(Franklin Cty) A woman from New Sharon was rescued by wardens after suffering a hiking injury. The Maine Warden Service reports to Star 97-7 that 30-year-old Amelia Hutchinson was hiking down the loop trail on Tumbledown Mountain with her two children Saturday morning when she slipped and fell down a steep slope and struck a tree, breaking her ankle. Several agencies worked together to load Hutchinson in an emergency rescue toboggan to carry and pull her down the mountain. Wardens say the icy, snow-covered terrain was challenging.
(Augusta) – Maine’s Center for Disease Control says 89-Mainers have now tested positive for COVID-19. Cumberland County has the highest number at 53, and York County has the 2nd highest. So far no residents of Hancock, Washington, Waldo or Knox Counties have positive tests reported, though MDI Hospital says it did test a confirmed case, but it was attributed to Penobscot County. The number of cases grew by 33-during the weekend.
(New York) As the number of cases of Covid 19 in the state of New York soared into the thousands, the FAA on Saturday temporarily halted flights to New York City airports. A spokesperson blamed the move on staffing issues at a regional air-traffic control center. According to the Associated Press, a directive posted online advised air traffic controllers to “stop all departures” to Kennedy, LaGuardia, Newark and other airports in the region. Sources say Philadelphia International Airport was also affected. The state was reporting 11,710 cases of the virus as of Saturday, with over 6 thousand cases in New York City alone.
UMaine Phishing Scam
(Orono) The University of Maine Police Department is warning against a gift card phishing scam. Authorities tell Star 97-7 News, they have recently received an increase in reports of scams involving gift card purchases and identity theft attempts. Some of the incidents have involved fake emails pretending to be from UMaine faculty and staff requesting employees to purchase gift cards. A similar warning was issued in January, but UMaine officers say they’ve seen a recent uptick in phishing as restaurants and bars close and the purchase of gift cards becomes more widespread.
NLMCBH Hospital Testing
(Ellsworth/Blue Hill) Northern Light Maine Coast and Blue Hill Hospitals have established a Drive-Up Test Site, but caution only people with referrals will be seen. A hospital spokesperson tells Star 97-7 news the Maine State CDC has shared new, stricter guidelines for testing patients. The strict guidelines come in response to a critically low national supply of laboratory materials, reducing the ability to perform COVID-19 testing across the state of Maine. CDC guidelines prioritize testing for hospital patients who are high risk, healthcare workers and first responders, and people living in closed settings, like nursing homes. To get a referral, you must have symptoms and must first call the hospital Screening Hotline at 844-489-1822.
Acadia National Park Alerts
(ANP Update) Acadia National Park has issued an alert about visiting the Park during the national health emergency. In response to the pandemic, both the Bar Harbor Chamber of Commerce Visitor’s Center in Bar Harbor and the Rockefeller Welcome Center at the Schoodic Institute are closed to visitors, and there are no in-person services available at this time. Off-season trip planning information is available online. Seasonal road closings and Mud Season closings of the carriage roads remain(s) in effect; however, the park service says it strives to keep open spaces available and that facilities in national parks continue to maintain the highest standards related to the health and wellness of staff and visitors.
Local Tissue Production
(Bangor) Put down those leaves and catalogs – Downeast Maine could soon see an end to the toilet tissue shortage. Someone was bound to take advantage of the state’s abundant forests, and Marc Cooper’s idea last June of starting a company that produces toilet tissue could not have come at a more opportune time. WABI-TV reports Cooper bought an empty building in Bangor, christened the company Tissue Plus, and recently started production of the hot commodity. The product is a welcome sight for distributors struggling to keep shelves stocked during the coronavirus scare. Cooper says it’s rewarding to be able to use Maine’s resources and to have Maine’s residents actually using their product.
Ellsworth Farmer’s Market
(Ellsworth) Ellsworth’s spring Farmer’s Market kicked off on Saturday. Experts say don’t let fears of the coronavirus keep you from eating healthy. Registered dietitian Lisa Valente says, “According to the FDA, currently there is no evidence of food or food packaging being associated with transmission of Covid-19,” although it’s unknown how long the virus may survive on certain surfaces. Valente recommends washing your hands before eating or prepping food and rinsing fresh produce with water. Local farmers at the market, set up outside 190 Main Street, say they, too, are taking every precaution to protect everyone’s health and ask people to maintain distance and make purchases promptly. The Ellsworth Farmer’s Market plans to return on April 4th and 11th.
Virtual Job Fair
(Ellsworth) Northern Light Health is holding a Virtual Job Fair tomorrow (Tuesday) from 1 to 3 p.m. The healthcare facility tells Star 97-7 News recruiters will be available for one on one conversations via Skype, Facetime, phone, etc. regarding all the positions Northern Light Health is currently offering statewide. Positions are available in financial services, cafeteria, housekeeping, facilities, and patient care positions. For more information on Tuesday’s Job Fair, check out our Facebook page or the Ellsworth Chamber’s FB page.
(Maine) Hannaford Supermarkets has announced a pledge of $250 thousand dollars in donations to local food banks. The company made the announcement on their FB page Friday evening. The food chain says the donation will support food banks in fulfilling their crucial role of providing food to those at risk of going hungry.
- Tom Brady made official – signing a 2-year contract to play for Tampa Bay for $50-million dollars
- The International Olympic Committee is discussing postponing the summer Olympics in Japan until next year. Canada says if the games are held this year, it will not send athletes.