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AM Update: West Nile Death in Williamson Co., Water Restriction Changes, Funeral for Slain Constable

West Nile Death in Williamson County

West Nile virus is being blamed for the death of a Williamson County woman. It’s the county’s first West Nile virus related death of the year. One person in Travis County died late last month.

Both patients were over 60 years-old; the woman in Williamson County was over 90. A total of six people in that county have been infected with West Nile virus. At least 16 people in Travis County have contracted the disease.

So far this season, Texas has seen the worst of the West Nile virus outbreak. Ten people have died from the disease in Dallas County. Eleven cities in Dallas County have agreed to fight the mosquitos via aerial spraying. Dallas County Judge Clay Jenkins declared a state of emergency.

Mosquitoes carry West Nile virus and there are two forms of the disease: West Nile fever and West Nile encephalitis. People usually recover from the fever, which seems like the flu. The encephalitis is more often what lands people in the hospital, and doctors believe it mostly affects individuals with other medical conditions.

Health officials say the best way to protect yourself is to take measures to avoid getting bitten.

Changes to Austin’s Water Management Strategy

Austin City Council members voted unanimously yesterday to change the city’s water management strategy.

The vote came about a month after Austin Water lifted Stage II water restrictions. Many community members expressed frustration that the restrictions were lifted since the area remains in drought conditions and lake levels are low.

Austin Water says the new water management strategy balances the need to conserve resources while allowing consumers more flexibility to water trees and yards.

The city is currently under the modified Stage I restrictions. You can use irrigation systems and sprinklers up to two days a week during certain hours and hand watering is allowed any day and any time.

Council also approved a new drought contingency plan yesterday.

Viewing and Funeral for Slain College Station Constable

Brazos County Constable Brian Bachmann’s funeral is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday at Reed Arena at Texas A&M. There will be a viewing tonight beginning at 6 p.m. at the Christ United Methodist Church. Both events are open to the public.

Bachmann was fatally shot in College Station while serving an eviction notice on Monday. A male bystander was also killed and three police officers and a female bystander were wounded. The suspect was shot dead at the scene.

For more information, visit College Station’s The Eagle.

Laura first joined the KUT team in April 2012. She now works for the statewide program Texas Standard as a reporter and producer. Laura came to KUT from the world of television news. She has worn many different hats as an anchor, reporter and producer at TV stations in Austin, Amarillo and Toledo, OH. Laura is a proud graduate of the University of Missouri-Columbia, a triathlete and enjoys travel, film and a good beer. She enjoys spending time with her husband and pets.
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