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Conservative radio and television host Sean Hannity says government needs to get out of the way so other parts of the United States can replicate the prosperity brought to North Dakota by oil....

     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - Conservative radio and television host Sean Hannity says government needs to get out of the way so other parts of the United States can replicate the prosperity brought to North Dakota by oil.  Hannity was a keynote speaker at the Williston Basin Petroleum Conference in Bismarck on Wednesday.
     He says energy is the lifeblood of the American economy and that expanded oil and gas production can solve the country's biggest problems.  Hannity says the U.S. should become energy independent and no longer buy oil from countries like Saudi Arabia that "don't like us."
     North Dakota's oil boom in recent years has made the state the second-biggest oil producer in the country. Hannity has encouraged his listeners and viewers hurt by economic downturn to head to the state for jobs.


     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The godfather of North Dakota's oil bonanza predicts the state's crude production will double to 2 million barrels daily by decade's end, but billionaire oilman Harold Hamm warned industry officials today that future safety missteps will threaten that.
     Hamm is the chairman of Oklahoma City-based Continental Resources Inc. His company is one of the oldest and biggest players in the Bakken.
     North Dakota's unprecedented oil boom has been marred in the past year by a massive oil pipeline rupture in the western part of the state and a fiery oil train derailment in the eastern part.  Hamm says the industry is in the "crosshairs" of anti-oil advocates and it's up to companies to do things in an "absolute safe manner."


     BISMARCK, N.D. (AP) - The Census Bureau says booming North Dakota has led the nation in housing development for the third year in a row.  Census Bureau statistics released today show that North Dakota added 10,207 housing units between July 2012 and July 2013. These 10,000 plus units added represent a growth of 3.1 percent.
     Williams County in the state's western oil patch showed more housing development growth than any other county in the country. The number of housing units in Williams County grew by 15.6 percent between July 2012 and July 2013 and by more than 40 percent between 2010 and 2013.
     North Dakota's oil boom in recent years has driven high growth rates as people have flooded into the state for jobs.


     BILLINGS, Mont. (AP) - Montana is joining North Dakota and South Dakota as states that plan to curtail sage grouse hunting in response to a continued decline in the game bird's population.  Montana wildlife commissioners gave tentative approval today to a proposal to cancel or scale back a two-month hunting season slated to open in September.
     Hunting advocates strongly oppose a closure, and Fish and Wildlife Commission Chairman Dan Vermillion says less drastic measures are still on the table. Those include shortening the season or limiting how many birds a hunter can shoot.  A final vote is expected in July.
     The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service is under a 2015 deadline to decide if the chicken-sized, ground-dwelling bird needs sweeping federal protections.  Biologists say agriculture, energy development and disease are greater threats than hunting.


    BISMARCK, N.D. (PNS) - As the state's emergency medical services personnel are being honored this week, North Dakotans are being reminded how critical it is to call 911 in the case of a heart attack or other medical emergency. In North Dakota, currently about half of heart attack patients get to the emergency room by way of a private vehicle. Ken Reed, emergency medical services director, Rugby EMS, says while they may arrive a few minutes earlier, it means no treatment or care during transit.

    "I can share from my own perspective a number of times where we've had a relative come into our waiting room distraught, asking for assistance, only to come to the car and find a victim who is already expired, because nothing was done for them during the 'fast ride' to the hospital in the private car," Reed says.

    In addition to the treatment in transit, Reed says the EMS workers also alert the hospital so emergency room staff is ready and prepped as soon as the patient arrives.

    "We've gone to great lengths to ensure that - especially in North Dakota - the ambulance is able to identify the heart attack via electrocardiogram, and to transmit that to the receiving hospital and to the cardiac care centers as well," he explains.

    Symptoms of a heart attack can include shortness of breath, nausea, and discomfort or pain in the chest, arms or other areas of the upper body. The sooner a patient gets treatment, the better the odds of recovery - and that's also very true when it comes to stroke.

    Staff physician Christopher Anderson, Essentia Health, Fargo, says neurological damage can mount with each passing minute, so it's important to act "FAST" upon onset of symptoms.

    "We have this acronym 'F-A-S-T.' One of the symptoms of stroke is facial drooping, so that's what the 'F' stands for. 'A' is for arm weakness and 'S' is for speech difficulty. The 'T' is just to remind people that time is critical and to call 911 as quickly as possible," Anderson says.

    Cardiovascular disease - including heart disease and stroke - is the leading cause of death in North Dakota and the United States.


   (Copyright 2014 by The Associated Press and Prairie News Service.  All Rights Reserved.)


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