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Experts discuss health insurance enrollment numbers in Utah

SALT LAKE CITY — President Obama is calling the Affordable Care Act a success, since millions of Americans have signed up for health care on the federal exchanges.

But how many Utahns have signed up and are now covered? FOX 13 News spoke with experts at Arches Health Plan, who said it’s still too soon to call Utah’s enrollment numbers good or bad.

The official report has not come in yet, but based on the estimates so far, Utah’s youth enrollment is above the national percentage.

After a rough roll out of the new health care exchange under the Affordable Care Act, President Obama was eager to announce the national enrollment numbers Thursday. He said 8 million Americans have enrolled, with 35 percent of those people under the age of 35.

In Utah, no official statewide numbers have been released, but a spokesperson for Arches Health Plan said about 68,000 Utahns have enrolled, with 47 percent in the coveted 35 and younger demographic.

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Man buried, injured when project caved in shares his story

CENTERVILLE, Utah — A Centerville man buried waist deep in mud and debris digs himself out.

The construction worker was excavating a swimming pool when the walls caved in, and now Luke Marti is still recovering at Intermountain Medical Center.

“It’s clear as day and it’s still emotional to talk about because it was so real,” Marti said in an interview from his hospital bed. “It was, you’ve got to get yourself out or you’re going to die.”

It’s still painful for him to go back in time. Last Wednesday was the day the 34 year old almost died.

Luke remembers, “I was making my way down the trench, about half way down…”

About half way down is when the dirt walls where the construction worker was digging a trench to make way for a sump system for a swimming pool caved all around him and water and mud came crumbling down.

Students participate in ‘Great Utah Shakeout’ earthquake drill

SALT LAKE CITY — Emergency responders, firefighters, law enforcement officials and other emergency personnel throughout the state are joining Utah residents to participate in the “Great Utah Shakeout” earthquake drill Thursday morning.

The Great Utah Shakeout is part of a worldwide effort to increase awareness of earthquake emergency procedures and improve earthquake preparedness.

“There’s a million different things that people can do to be prepared, but the Great Utah Shakeout is one of the great things we can do as a state to be unified in all of our preparedness efforts,” said Joe Dougherty, Utah Division of Emergency Management.

The Great Utah Shakeout began at 10:15 a.m. with a mock earthquake. Event organizers ask Utahns to “drop, cover and hold,” as if a real earthquake were happening, at that time.

State lawmakers discuss governor’s ‘Healthy Utah’ plan

SALT LAKE CITY — The Obama Administration reportedly gave Governor Gary Herbert preliminary approval on his plan to provide health care coverage to uninsured Utahns.

However, the governor’s bigger hurdle may be with the Utah legislature. It will take a special session from the Utah Legislature to approve the Governor’s plan, and scoring the support from the State House of Representatives will be challenging.

Governor Herbert was in good spirits after a trip to Washington D.C., where the feds gave his “Healthy Utah Plan” to cover tens of thousands of uninsured Utahns an initial OK.

“This will be a work in progress,” Herbert said during a press briefing. “We don’t have all the answers because we don’t know all the questions, but I’m confident this is going to be a better approach for the Utah citizens and taxpayers than just Medicaid expansion.”

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Governor talks ‘Healthy Utah’ plan with team behind Obamacare

SALT LAKE CITY — Fresh off a trip to Washington D.C., Governor Gary Herbert says he is confident his plan to provide health coverage to low income Utahns, called “Healthy Utah,” will be approved by the Obama Administration.

Herbert met with the White House Health Policy team. In the governor’s words, “The people who wrote the Affordable Care Act.”

“Their comment to me was this was never intended to be a one size fits all approach, so we embrace your proposal to have a unique Utah solution,” Herbert said.

Herbert also met with outgoing Secretary of Health and Human Services, Kathleen Sebelius. He said the Secretary also said she didn’t see any major objections to Healthy Utah.

‘Blood moon’ will be a sight to behold during Tuesday’s total lunar eclipse

FOX 13 News’ Nineveh Dinha spoke with local experts about the upcoming eclipse, see the video above for details.

CNN story continues below:

By Ben Brumfield


(CNN) — Prophecy loves signs from the heavens, and they will deliver Tuesday with a moonlight spectacle.

What will happen could sound sort of like this:

The moon will turn to blood as it aligns with Earth and sun Then do so thrice more ere a year and a half is done, ‘Tis not the herald of the apocalypses Just the first of four total lunar eclipses.

In other words, get ready for an unusually beautiful moon to grace the night skies next week. There will be a total lunar eclipse Tuesday that will turn the moon a burnt reddish orange, NASA says.

It’s called a blood moon, and this one is just the first in a series of four consecutive total eclipses.

Man shot, killed by authorities after allegedly pointing gun at police

CENTERVILLE, Utah – A 38-year-old man died after he allegedly pointed a gun at police and was then shot by authorities Sunday.

Officials with the Centerville Police Department said authorities responded to a man who was reportedly suicidal; the call to police was made by the man’s wife around 3 p.m.

Police tried to negotiate with the man, who had a gun, for some time before the man allegedly pointed a gun at police. An officer shot the individual, who died.

“Shots were fired, or a shot, I don’t know how many,” said Sgt. Zane Robison of the Centerville Police Department. “I do know that the officers are safe and that the suicidal male we were called to investigate is deceased.”

Police later identified the man as Vincent John Farrand.

FOX 13 News’ Kiersten Nuñez spoke with several individuals who were in the area when the incident occurred, see the video above for those interviews.