Texas Coverage 7.23 - KCBD NewsChannel 11 Lubbock

7/23/02

Texas Coverage 7.23

The first human case of the West Nile Virus is confirmed Tuesday in Houston. 50 year-old Richard Hicks is in stable condition at Houston Veterans Affairs Medical Center with what doctors described as Encephalitis and muscle weakness of his right side. Blood tests confirm it is the mosquito borne disease. Until now, only birds and horses have tested positive for the West Nile Virus in Texas. Tests are being done on four additional patients who may also be infected.

It's a strange place to park a plane, but a pilot in San Antonio took what he could get. It all happened on Monday. The pilot of a Cessna reported mechanical problems and had to make an emergency landing between some homes. Fortunately, no one was hurt, and there was no damage to the plane.

Homeowners insurance rates are on the rise in Texas. Some premiums can jump as much as 200%. Governor Perry says that he is going to address the emergency in the next legislative session. He warns companies they could face rate freezes and more regulation.

"If you want to do business in the state of Texas, you better get your act together and be fair with the people of Texas. If you can't do that, go to Oklahoma or Arkansas," said Governor Perry.

An industry spokesman says that Texans are being hit hard with skyrocketing rates because of billions of dollars in mold related claims.

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