Red River Radio Local News Segment

Courtesy: Texas Dept. of Health

TEXAS RURAL HEALTH CONCERNS - Texans living in rural communities are more likely to see COVID-19 as threatening to their personal health than those living in urban and suburban areas.   That's according to a new statewide survey from the University of Texas at Tyler. Professor Mark Owens conducted the survey.  He says 57 percent of people  living in smaller  rural communities identify the virus as a major threat compared with 41 percent of those in cities with more than one-million residents.

"This is one of the widest ranges that we saw and there 

Courtesy: Chuck Smith / Red River Radio News

LIMITED REOPENING - In Texas,  Gov. Greg Abbott outlined a slow reopening of the state economy that will allow retailers, restaurants, movie theaters and malls to start letting a few customers into their establishments starting May 1.    The plan allows those places to operate at 25% capacity.

"My executive order to stay at home that was issued last month is set to expire on April the 30th," Abbott said. "That executive order has done its job to slow the growth of Covid-19 and I will let it expire as scheduled."

Courtesy: Governor of Louisiana's Office

EXTENDED TO MAY 15TH - Louisiana Governor  John Bel Edwards is extending his  stay-at-home order through May 15.   Edwards  made his announcement  Monday,  saying  some  regions  of the state haven’t shown enough progress in fighting the coronavirus outbreak to lessen widespread restrictions on businesses and public gatherings.

Courtesy: Montgomery Police News

TORNADO DAMAGE AND DEATHS - At least 5 people are dead and dozens injured after tornadoes tore through parts of Oklahoma, Texas, Louisiana  and  Mississippi  last  night.  Three  people  died when an apparent tornado  touched  down about 6 p.m. Wednesday near Onalaska, Texas  about 60 miles southwest of Lufkin.  Crews from the National Weather Service will be out to survey damage later this morning.  Charles Roeseler is with the National Weather Service in Houston 

Courtesy: Caddo Parish Sheriffs Office

FREE FACE MASKS – Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards  is  urging people to wear face-masks when out in public as he is expected to ease Stay-At-Home restrictions at the end of the month.  Officials with Caddo Parish have partnered with the City of Shreveport and the Office of Homeland Security to provide over 116,000 cloth reusable masks to residents across Caddo Parish.   The masks have been provided by the Hanes Corporation.   At a joint press conference yesterday, Mayor Adrian Perkins explained how the masks will be distributed.

Courtesy: Chuck Smith / Red River Radio News

TEXAS COVID19 - RECOVERY -  Governors in every state are eager to reopen their economies.  And Texas is no exception---The key to the Texas economy recovering from the COVID-19 pandemic is avoiding a second wave of cases.   That's according to Ray Perryman, president and CEO of The Perryman Group, an economic analysis firm. He spoke  yesterday  at an online event organized by the Dallas Regional Chamber of Commerce.

Courtesy: Halliburton Oil Services

TEXAS OIL LAYOFFS - Plummeting oil prices amid the coronavirus pandemic are taking their toll on Texas energy companies.   Houston-based Halliburton has been hit especially hard. The nation's largest oil field service company this morning posted a billion-dollar net loss in the first quarter.  On a conference call, President Jeff Millers said they're cutting a billion dollars in overhead and other costs. 

Courtesy: Chuck Smith / Red River Radio News

EASES MEDICAL RESTRICTIONS -  Louisiana Governor John Bel Edwards announced yesterday that he is lifting many restrictions on non-emergency medical procedures  including  abortions  beginning April 27th.  This is the first rollback of his stay-at-home order since the coronavirus crisis began. 

"We believe we need to allow people to redume going to the doctor for things that may not be an emergency at first,"explained Edwards. "But if you don't allow them to get treatment at some point, many of those things will become acute and emergencies."

Courtesy: Gov. Greg Abbott Video Conference

DEMOCRATS CRITICIZE ABBOTT-  Democratic  lawmakers from Texas are criticizing Governor Greg Abbott's plan to reopen the state's economy in the midst  of  the coronavirus pandemic.   They argue the move is premature and the scope of the outbreak in Texas remains unknown as the rate of testing lags behind other states.  State Representative Celia Israel , an Austin Democrat, said Abbott's new Strike Force to Open Texas is missing  leaders who have been spearheading  the  response to COVID-19 at the city and county level. 

Courtesy: La. Dept. of Health

LA CORONAVIRUS UPDATE -   The number of confirmed coronavirus cases reported by the Louisiana Department of Health is up to 23,928 with 1,296 total deaths reported.  The number of cases in Northwest Louisiana is up slightly with Caddo Parish reported as having 1,261 total cases with 70 deaths reported.  Bossier Parish has 233 total cases and 11 deaths reported.  Webster parish has 76 cases and 4 deaths reported. DeSoto Parish has 156 cases and 8 Deaths reported.