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Whooping cough among farmworkers in Grant County

The Grant County Health District is responding to a local outbreak of whooping cough among migrant workers in Mattawa and Quincy.

Three cases have been confirmed and 210 people were given antibiotics from Friday through Monday.

The health district says workers also are being offered the vaccine known as the Tdap shot for pertussis. The shot is especially important to prevent spreading the disease to infants.

The health district says the farm where the workers are housed has been responsive and cooperative.

Metal thefts hit Moses Lake farms, ranches

�Metal thieves are hitting some ranches and farms in Grant County.

The sheriff's office says there have been five thefts recently of steel and aluminum livestock corral panels in the Moses Lake area.

Sheriff Tom Jones urges residents to form neighborhood watches to look for suspicious people.

Metal thefts hit Moses Lake farms, ranches

Metal thieves are hitting some ranches and farms in Grant County.

The sheriff's office says there have been five thefts recently of steel and aluminum livestock corral panels in the Moses Lake area.

Sheriff Tom Jones urges residents to form neighborhood watches to look for suspicious people.

Wildfire threatens structures near Quincy

Wildfire threatens structures near Quincy

An 800-acre wildfire is burning just west of Quincy, Wash. toward Wenatchee.

The fire is being fueled by wind, according to firefighters in Grant County.

There are no road closures or evacuation orders in effect, but fire officials say several structures are threatened.

The fire broke out around 2:30 a.m. Wednesday.

Five agencies are working to battle the flames.

A first-timers guide to legal recreational marijuana

A first-timers guide to legal recreational marijuana

Legal marijuana sales kicked off Tuesday across Washington, including at one of three confirmed stores here in Spokane, with enthusiasts in line hours before opening.

But what about the curious among us who have never taken a puff in our lives, but are ready to give it a try now that it's legal and easily accessible?

“It can be a little alien if it's their first time,” said Green Leaf customer service representative Chad Welsh. “To walk in here and think 'What are these devices?' and 'What is your product all about?'”

A big part of Chad's job is to help guide first-timers through the experience, with tips on the product, how to smoke and what to smoke with. I also spoke with Daniel Wendling, general manager at Piece of Mind and assistant manager at the licensed pot shop Satori just next door, and put together a how-to of sorts for the first time smoker.

 

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Grant County investigates pertussis outbreak

Grant County investigates pertussis outbreak

The Grant County Health District is investigating three confirmed cases of whooping cough (pertussis) and another 210 who may have been exposed to infected individuals.

The outbreak has been contained to migrant farm workers near Mattawa and Quincy, and so far no one has been hospitalized.

“Because a large number of exposed and ill individuals in a very well-defined area, we are considering this a local outbreak,” said Grant County Health Officer Alexander Brzezny.

In an effort to control the spread of the disease, GCHD distributed antibiotics for all 210 individuals who came in close contact with the ill individuals. The pertussis (Tdap) shot is also being offered to all the workers to reduce a chance of future infection.

Working 4 you: Preventing heat illnesses in young children

Working 4 you: Preventing heat illnesses in young children

It's expected to be a very hot week in Spokane, and that means children are at a higher risk for heat-related illnesses.

There is always something to do outside in the summer, and it can be easy for time to slip by. But experts say it's important to recognize that children and adults tolerate heat very differently.

According to doctors, children are at a higher risk for heat related injuries. They say children have thinner skin and don't manage heat exchange well. Children also tend to lose more fluids through their skin.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, infants and children younger than four are among those at the greatest risk for heat-related illnesses.

So, doctors have some suggestions for children who are heading out to play.

First, they urge parents to plan ahead. Make sure children are hydrating before they head outside to play. And once they are outside, make sure children are drinking every 20 to 30 minutes. Children should be taking frequent breaks to hydrate.

Doctors also add that it's important to watch what your children are drinking. Make sure they're not drinking any caffeinated sodas.