State of Emerg Declared in Buncombe, Gov: No Large Events, More Cases in NC

Coronavirus Cases Increase In NC

(Raleigh, NC) -- The number of coronavirus cases is up again in North Carolina. State health officials revealed yesterday there are 15 confirmed and presumed positive cases. Governor Roy Cooper is recommending organizations to postpone or cancel events with at least 100 people. Both Buncombe County and the city of Asheville declared states-of-emergency yesterday in response to the coronavirus.

Gov. Cooper Wants Large Gatherings Canceled, Workers To Telecommute

(Winston-Salem, NC) - North Carolina Governor Roy Cooper is urging large gatherings in the state to be postponed to help stop the spread of coronavirus. The governor is also encouraging companies to let their employees telecommute until further notice. Yesterday's announcement was made after two people from Forsyth County tested positive for novel coronavirus, bringing the total number of positive cases to at least 15.

HCA To Answer Concerns Over Mission Health By End Of Month

(Asheville, NC) -- HCA Healthcare has until the end of the month to address concerns about Mission Health. North Carolina Attorney General Josh Stein recently sent a list of complaints to the organization after local residents voiced concerns over patient care, billing and staff issues at a series of community meetings around the mountains. WLOS-TV reports Stein has extended an original deadline to respond to the issues from March 11th to the end of this month.

High School Sports Events Postponed

(Raleigh, NC) -- Sporting events are being canceled or postponed across North Carolina in response to the coronavirus. The state's high school athletic association announced yesterday that all spring sports are suspended from tonight at midnight through April 6th. The association's commissioner said they must err on the side of caution. The NCAA is also canceling all men's and women's winter and spring championships, including the ACC and NCAA basketball tournaments.

Murphy Man Charged In Murder Of Child

(Murphy, NC) -- A man in Murphy is facing charges connected to the death of his child. Investigators say a minor was rushed from the Cool Springs community to an Atlanta hospital after paramedics found the child injured last weekend. The child reportedly died from blunt force trauma to the head. Morgan Kimble is in Cherokee County jail for murder.

Area Universities Extending Spring Breaks

(Undated) -- Several western North Carolina schools are extending spring breaks for college students. Brevard College, Western Carolina University, A-B Tech, and Appalachian State are among those who are giving students a two-week break due to the coronavirus pandemic. School officials are also encouraging students to remain off campus if they can. Classes are expected to online or through other alternative methods once spring break wraps up.

Prescribed Burns Coming Up For Pisgah, Nantahala Forests

(Asheville, NC) -- Mountain residents can expect to see smoke from prescribed burns in the coming months. The U.S. Forest Service is preparing to burn five areas in the Pisgah National Forest and 16 in the Nantahala National Forest as a way to improved wildlife habitats. The burning helps reduce underbrush and limit wildfire growth.

Union County Public Works Issues Boil Water Advisory

(Union County, NC) -- E. coli is causing problems for Union County water customers. The county's public works department issued a boil water advisory yesterday after the bacteria was found in routine testing. Union County Schools will be closed to students again today due to the problem. Cases of bottled water are free today at Sun Valley High School, the Waxhaw Police Department and Porter Ridge High School while supplies last.

Charlotte Suspects Among 600 Arrested In Drug Cartel Investigation

(Charlotte, NC) -- Several suspects from the Charlotte area are among over 600 across the country who were targeted in a large drug operation. The Department of Justice said yesterday investigators spent the last half-year seizing drugs and arresting hundreds who are thought to be tied to a Mexican criminal organization that specializes in producing meth. Gastonia, Gaston County and Charlotte-Meck police all helped in the investigation.

Charlotte St. Patrick's Day Events Canceled

(Charlotte, NC) -- Saint Patrick's Day events in the Charlotte area are being canceled this weekend due to the coronavirus. That includes Charlotte's annual parade and festival, the Shamrock Crawl in Matthews, and Rich & Bennett's 20th annual Pub Crawl in uptown. Organizers are working on rescheduling the events for later in the year.

CMS Changing Schedules In Response To Coronavirus

(Charlotte, NC) -- CMS officials are making changes in response to the coronavirus. All field trips, competitions and school-based performances are canceled indefinitely. The state's high school athletic association is also suspending events after tonight through April 6th. The district is continuing to monitor the situation and thanked the public for patience in the rapidly changing environment.

More Test Kits Now Available For People Showing Symptoms Of Virus

(Raleigh, NC) -- More people can now get tested for the coronavirus in North Carolina. This after the state health department announced Thursday that it had loosened some of the requirements for patients to qualify for testing. Meanwhile, the number of confirmed cases continues to increase. At last report, there were 15-cases statewide. Those were from individuals in Mecklenburg, Forsyth, Wake, Johnston and Cabarrus counties.

Health Officials Say The Flu Remains A Serious Threat

(Raleigh, NC) -- State health officials are reporting three more flu deaths last week. Although the number of actual cases of the flu have declined in recent weeks, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services warns the flu is still geographically considered to be wide spread. Since October of 2019, 134 people have died from complications of the flu in North Carolina.

U-Haul Offering Students Free Place To Store Their Stuff

(Phoenix, AZ) -- U-Haul has announced it is offering free storage for college students who are being forced to leave their campus residential housing because of the coronavirus. The free self storage units will be available for 30-days. According to a company spokesperson, the offer comes with no strings attached. He said no purchase of any kind is necessary. The special offer is nationwide.

American Airlines Cutbacks Will Affect RDU

(Raleigh, NC) -- American Airlines has announced that, due to the threat of the spread of the coronavirus, it is suspending a number of domestic and international flights. This will include scheduled flights from RDU to London. In a statement released Thursday, the airline said it will continue to operate flights to and from Europe for at least the next seven days so that Americans in those countries can return home. The suspensions will remain in effect for about 30-days.

Rockingham Co. Man Accused Of Making Threats, Barricading Himself

(Rockingham Co., NC) - A Rockingham County man is accused of making a string of bomb threats to local schools, and then threatening to shoot deputies. Thirty-seven-year-old Joseph Irving was arrested yesterday after barricading himself inside his Ruffin home. He reportedly pointed a firearm at deputies who were serving arrest warrants. Irving is facing several charges, including cyberstalking, threats of mass violence, and felony assault with a deadly weapon on a government official.

High Point Market Postponed

(High Point, NC) - The historic High Point Market is postponed over coronavirus concerns. The 111-year-old market was scheduled for April 25th through the 29th but will be moved to a later date. It has only been canceled one time before back in 1942 in the midst of World War Two.

Winston-Salem/Forsyth Co. Schools Limit Visitors

(Forsyth Co., NC) - Winston-Salem/Forsyth County Schools is limiting the amount of visitors amid concerns over coronavirus. The news comes after two cases were confirmed in Forsyth County. District officials are asking parents to meet with their children in a private area on campus. While schools are still open, the district is developing a backup plan in case they need to shut down.

Duke, Kansas Take Themselves Out Of NCAA Tournament

(Durham, NC) -- The Duke and Kansas men's basketball teams are pulling themselves out of the NCAA Tournament. Both schools announced they are suspending all athletic events indefinitely because of the coronavirus pandemic. The NCAA had announced Wednesday the tournament would go on but fans would not be allowed to attend. The two schools were in line to be top seeds.

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