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A new app released today on iTunes and Google Play Stores will help rural elevators, fire departments and other emergency personnel to save lives.

The Illinois Grain Rescue Tube Locator app uses a GPS system to locate the nearest grain rescue tube to your location, a key component when saving farm workers from drowning in grain filled storage bins.

Illinois Corn Marketing Board, together with the Grain and Feed Association of Illinois, built this tool to try to save lives, and to help build awareness that grain bin entrapments and engulfments make agriculture one of the most dangerous industries in Illinois.

"IL Corn began building this app to try to fill a need for more lifesaving equipment," said Lou Lamoreux, Illinois Corn Marketing Board Chairman. "Every year, we see farmers getting into grain bins when we all know that we shouldn't and every year someone passes away because of this mistake. This app will help ensure that a grain rescue tube can always be located nearby."

"We see this app as another tool in the toolbox if an unfortunate situation occurs and someone is entrapped. By downloading the app ahead of time and having it available, we can speed up the process to save a life," John Lee, Director of Safety, Health, Environmental Services Program, Grain and Feed Association of Illinois.

There have been more than 900 grain-bin entrapments nationwide since 1964, according to data compiled by Purdue University's Agricultural Safety and Health Program. Illinois had 10 grain entrapments in 2010 alone.
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The Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce announces new Executive Director

The Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce proudly announces Barbara Brewer-Watson as their new Executive Director.

Formed in 2012, the Chamber has been focused on creating a strong business community in Kankakee County. When Board Chairman Matt McBurnie began in May 2014 he was excited to solidify the Chamber's brand and create more value for the organization's members. "The Chamber Board is committed to enhancing the business climate in our community and believes that Barbi is exactly the right fit to serve our members at this key time." Chairman McBurnie said.

The news comes just one month after the Kankakee Valley Symphony Orchestra announced Brewer-Watson as their new part-time Executive Director. Barbi says, "Both the Kankakee County Chamber of Commerce and the Kankakee Valley Symphony Orchestra are interested in creating a thriving community here in Kankakee County. These two organizations complement one another and help create a better community."

Barbara has been a participant and now organizer for the Spice of Life for 20 years, an assistant event planner for Spotlight Meetings and Events where she had the opportunity to work with the McDonald's Engagement Team at their Global Convention, and worked in Adult Services developing programs and events for the Kankakee Public Library.

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Kankakee among most dangerous cities in Illinois

        Chicago's Windy City wasn't listed in the rankings; flawed numbers


Illinois ranks as the 20th most-dangerous state in the nation, according to a new report based on crime statistics from the FBI.

Law Street Media published a ranking of America's "Safest & Most Dangerous States 2015" using the latest violent crime data from the FBI.

Kankakee was ranked sixth. Harvey and Rockford top the list, followed by Springfield, Carbondale and Champaign. Peoria, Bloomington and Decatur also made the list.

Indiana ranked as the 22nd most dangerous state. Indianapolis and Gary are among the top dangerous cities in the Hoosier state.

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Pontiac inmate’s death under investigation

Authorities are investigating the death of an Illinois prison inmate at the Pontiac Correctional Center.

36-year-old Fabian Carrillo was found unresponsive on the floor of his cell early Tuesday. The death is being treated as a homicide.

A DOC spokesman said no sharp or blunt objects were found in the cell, and there was no sign of the use of those kinds of objects on the victim. Toxicology tests are pending.

Department of Corrections records show Carrillo was serving a 52-year sentence for a murder conviction out of Cook County and had been imprisoned since 2003.

It's the first murder at the facility in 24 years.

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Watseka approves dispatch contract

          Most all Iroquois County emergency agencies onboard

The Watseka City Council has inked the bottom line, approving its part of the contract with the Iroquois County ETSB Board for emergency dispatch service.

The action Tuesday night follows suit with other municipal government boards in Iroquois County and fire districts in their respective approval of the agreements they've had with the ETSB for years.

Iroquois Memorial Hospital, Riverside Medical Center, and respective community ambulance services have also signed new ETSB contracts.

The Watseka Council's share of the dispatch contract with ETSB is for $163,382. Watseka also made good on some past missed payments, delayed over the confusion caused in recent months by the Iroquois County Board's maneuvering to try to take control of the 9-1-1 operations.

Mayor Bob Harwood said the council had actually informally approved the contract last month.

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