Stray Cat Tests Positive for Rabies
<bt>On Thursday, Oct. 12 at around 8 a.m., a Fairfax County Animal Control officer was called to the 1200 block of Aldebaran Drive in the McLean area in response to a cat that appeared sick. According to police, the cat had an eye injury and appeared to have difficulty walking. The officer took the cat to a local vet clinic. While there, the cat bit an employee, and a decision was made to euthanize the cat. The cat’s remains were taken to the Fairfax County Health Department where it tested positive for rabies.
Since the cat was found near The Potomac School, the Animal Services Division made appropriate notifications to staff and to residents in the area. An employee of the school reported back that a second victim, a second grader, had possibly been bitten by the same cat. The family was requested to contact the health department and the Animal Control officer will be following up with the family. For more information about rabies in general and rabies statistics in Fairfax County, call the Fairfax County rabies hotline at 703-324-2483.
<sh>Community Center Surveys Users
<bt>The McLean Community Center (MCC) is conducting the second of four surveys to gather residents' and users' opinions about the Center’s plans to expand its facilities and programs. The Center is located at 1234 Ingleside Avenue. The first survey, a telephone survey of Dranesville Small District 1A residents, began on Thursday, Oct. 12. The second survey of Center users, will begin at 9 a.m. on Tuesday, Oct. 17. The survey asks users about their experiences taking classes, attending performances and special events, and renting meeting rooms at the Center. Anyone who comes to the Center can participate in the survey. Three computer terminals will be set up in the lobby and can be used to take the survey online. Computers will be assigned on a first-come, first-serve basis during operating hours, 9 a.m. to 11 p.m., Monday through Thursday; 9 a.m. to 12 midnight on Friday and Saturday, and 2 p.m. to 6 p.m. on Sunday. The survey is confidential. Over the last six years, MCC’s Governing Board and staff members have been considering a possible expansion of the main facility and a relocation or renovation of the Old Firehouse Teen Center (OFTC). OFTC is a satellite program of MCC located at 1440 Chain Bridge Road. It provides after-school programs, activities, events and a summer camp program for middle-school-age students. The 11 members of the Center’s Governing Board have contracted with George Mason University’s Center for Social Science Research to design and oversee the four surveys. The third and fourth surveys, which will be administered at Cooper and Longfellow middle schools later this month, will involve 7th-graders who currently use OFTC and 8th graders (and their parents). For more information on the survey, contact the Center at 703-790-0123, TTY: 703-827-8255, or via E-mail at firstname.lastname@example.org.
<bt>On Wednesday, Nov. 1, from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m., the Safe Community Coalition will host "The Good Enough Parent: How to Have an Imperfect Family and Be Perfectly Satisfied," a program featuring renowned psychologist Dr. Brad Sachs. Sachs will discuss the challenges of parenting. The event will be held at Temple Rodef Shalom Social Hall at 2100 Westmoreland Street in Falls Church. Tickets are $5 in advance or at the door. To pre-register, or for more information, visit www.safecommunitycoalition.net/events.html.
<sh>Be Alert For Deer
<bt>The Fairfax County Police Department advises citizens to be extra vigilant for deer while driving during October, November and December. To avoid a dangerous and often costly collision with deer this fall, police offer the following driving tips: Always wear a seat belt to reduce the possibility of injury in case of a collision; be alert for deer and drive cautiously — especially near a deer crossing sign; be especially attentive at dusk and dawn during deer breeding season from mid-October to January (peak deer movement in the fall coincides with the time change back to standard time, which subsequently shifts rush hour into darkness hindering a driver's ability to see deer); when spotting a deer near the roadway, slow down and be ready for the animal to dart into the road. Honk a horn to try to scare the deer away. Deer often travel in groups, so if there's one deer near the roadway, be cautious for others; when seeing a deer on a roadway, flash headlights from bright to dim and honk the horn to encourage it to move away from the road. Drive with lights on during overcast days and use high beams at night whenever possible (though headlights can confuse deer, the reflecting light from their eyes will help the driver to see them); warn following drivers of the presence of deer by tapping on the brakes; if a deer runs into the roadway, try to slow down or brake without swerving. Losing control of a car and crashing into another car or a stationary object can be more dangerous than hitting the deer; if one cannot avoid hitting a deer, slow down and grasp the steering wheel firmly with both hands. Take one's foot off the brake at the time of impact so the front end of the vehicle will lift up and enable the deer to go under the car, rather than over it (reducing the danger of it crashing through the windshield or windows). If the animal is injured or killed, report the collision through the non-emergency line at 703-691-2131. In 2005 there were 151 reportable crashes between vehicles and deer in Fairfax County with 13 resulting in injuries to people (including one fatality). However, the actual number of collisions is likely between 3,000 and 5,000. If motorists remain alert and slow down to allow more reaction time, it is possible that some of these crashes could be avoided or result in less damage.
<sh>S.A.F.E. Course at South Lakes High School
<bt>The Fairfax County Police Department will be hosting a Sexual Assault Free and Empowered (S.A.F.E.) class at South Lakes High School, located at 11400 South Lakes Drive in Reston. S.A.F.E is dedicated to empowering women with knowledge to reduce the occurrence of sexual assault crimes. The program provides effective options by teaching women to take an active role in their self defense and psychological well being. S.A.F.E. is a comprehensive course that begins with classroom instruction in risk awareness, risk reduction, crime prevention strategies and defensive concepts followed by hands-on training in physical defense techniques. S.A.F.E. classes consist of four days of training, and students receive a certificate of completion on the last night. The course will run on Oct. 30, Nov. 1, 6 and 8, from 6:15 to 9:30 p.m. To register, call 703-246-7806.