Winter storm closes 70 Indiana COVID-19 vaccine clinics

INDIANAPOLIS — A winter storm that buried much of Indiana under heavy snowfall Tuesday led health officials to temporarily close dozens of COVID-19 vaccine clinics around the state, including ones right here in Knox County.

The Indiana State Department of Health said more than 70 clinics that were closed Tuesday due to the inclement weather.

The agency said anyone who had an appointment to receive a COVID-19 vaccine at one of those clinics and needs to rescheduled that can click on the link in their last confirmation text message. They can also reschedule through email or call 211 if they need assistance.

Both of the county’s clinics, one at Good Samaritan and the Knox County Health Department’s clinic at Community United Methodist Church on Hart Street Road, were expected to reopen today.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says individuals who receive their second dose of either the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine within 42 days of the first dose will have full protection from the virus.

As of Tuesday, 828,078 Hoosiers have received a first dose of vaccine, and 347,508 are fully vaccinated.

Hoosiers age 65 and older, along with healthcare workers, long-term care residents and first responders who are regularly called to the scene of an emergency to render medical assistance, are now eligible to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.

Overnight fire kills 100 animals at Indianapolis pet store

INDIANAPOLIS — An estimated 100 animals died when an overnight fire filled an Indianapolis pet store with thick smoke and deadly gases, fire officials said.

It took firefighters about an hour to extinguish the blaze at Uncle Bills Pet Center on Monday night because they had difficulty accessing the fire in the building’s back roof area, the Indianapolis Fire Department said.

After dousing flames that had filled the building with thick, black smoke, crews discovered “what can only be described as a horrible tragedy” inside, with about 40 dogs, 25 parakeets, rabbits and other animals dead from smoke inhalation, Battalion Chief Rita Reith said in a news release.

“The animals were still in their respective cages and simply succumbed to the deadly gases produced by the smoke,” Reith wrote.

Multiple reptiles, fish, an office cat and “a resilient guinea pig” that survived the fire were removed from the building and were being evaluated by pet store staff.

The cause of the fire remains under investigation.

Crash kills 2 teens, injures 2 others in southern Indiana

PAOLI, Ind. — Two teenagers have been killed and two others hurt after the vehicle they were in flipped multiple times and crashed in a southern Indiana field.

The vehicle left the roadway about 8:20 p.m. Sunday near Paoli and landed on its roof, according to the state police.

Police said Jocelyn Phillips, 16, of Paoli, and Kyndell Bailey, 15, of Orleans were pronounced dead at the scene. Injured were Keeghan Jones, 18, and Trandon Blevins, 15, both of Paoli.

The crash remains under investigation.

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