Breaking Local News

Holes and Corrosion Led to MCHM Spill

Holes in a tank's floor and roof likely helped cause the Freedom Industries chmeical spill in January, according to federal investigators. The Chemical Safety Board also found that the leaky Freedom Industries tank wasn't the only shoddy one. Another Freedom tank that held the same spilled chemical had a similar hole in its floor. The board detailed three crude MCHM tanks with pitting, holes or other damage. The Chemical Safety Board says corrosion from water pooling inside the leaky tank likely caused the holes. The substances traveled through soil, gravel and water systems under the Freedom site before hitting the Elk River.

Two Suspects Sought After a Man Is Attacked With a Sword

State police are looking for two suspects after a man says he was tied up and attacked with a sword. It happened along Campbell's Creek Drive in eastern Kanawha County, and the man told WCHS TV he though he was going to be killed. He says the suspects tied him up with extension cords, and assaulted with a three to four foot sword. After about 45 minutes he was able to escape and run through the woods. The suspects were known to him, and he identified them as Ronald Coleman and Patricia Dilo and state police have warrants out for their arrest.

Lawmakers Announce Grants for Job Creation

Seven public-private regional councils in West Virginia will receive $70,000 grants apiece to produce economic development strategies that support creating jobs. The grants from the U.S. Economic Development Administration were announced Tuesday by U.S. Sens. Joe Manchin and Jay Rockefeller and Congressman Nick Rahall. The councils serve a total of 32 counties across the state.

Jobless Rate Drops

Unemployment in West Virginia fell slightly in June. WorkForce West Virginia says June's seasonally adjusted unemployment rate was 6.2 percent, down one-tenth of a percentage point from May. Employment gains were reported in mining and logging, construction, manufacturing, trade, transportation and utilities, professional and business services, and leisure and hospitality. Declines were reported in government, educational and health services, financial activities and other services. The national unemployment rate dropped two-tenths of a percentage point in June to 6.1 percent.

Man Goes Without Food To Draw Attention to a Cause

A man is fasting to draw attention to a cause he cares about. Roland Micklem has been fasting as a way of taking a non-controversial stand against mountaintop removal. WCHS TV reports Micklem is hoping to bring the issue to the government's attention, but he doesn't consider it a protest. He plans to continue going without food as long as he is physically able to do so.

Volunteering Mentoring Group to Close This Summer

Big Brothers Big Sisters of North Central West Virginia says it will close its offices at the end of the month because of funding cuts. The Morgantown-based organization pairs youth with adult mentors in Harrison, Marion and Monongalia counties. Its last day of operations will be July 31.The organization says in a news release that its operations are no longer feasible due to several funding cuts. It is encouraging adult volunteers to continue to find ways to mentor youth in their communities.

Putnam County Fair Continues Today

Putnam County Fair goers have been partaking of the food, games, rides and vendors at the carnival each night this week, and 4-H and the Future Farmers of America continue to display their exhibits. Gates open at 4pm today and events include a show by a chainsaw carver, a kids pedal power tractor pull, and blue grass night with live music.

Freedom Industries Starts Tearing Down Tanks

Demolition has started on storage tanks at Freedom Industries. The Department of Environmental Protection said the demolition at the former Freedom Industries site on the Elk River should take two to four weeks unless there are major weather delays. The DEP said a contractor started the process of cutting 10 steel tanks Tuesday afternoon. Four other tanks will be left on site to store stormwater runoff that comes into contact with potentially contaminated soil. The company had delayed the teardown multiple times.

Chalreston Distance Run Needs Volunteers

Now is the time to sign up as a volunteer for the Charleston Distance Run. Organizers want volunteers to help at water and aid stations, and to help with traffic control. The course runs for 15 miles, and the race is Saturday morning August 30th. To volunteer, email Lynn.watts@cityofcharleston.org.

Investigation Continues After Shot Fired At a Reporter

A Bluefield television station says someone fired a shot at one of its reporters at the scene of a slaying. WVVA-TV says Annie Moore was recording video of Willbrian Apartments in Beckley when someone in a passing vehicle fired a shot at her. Moore took cover behind a station vehicle and wasn't injured. Police say a body was found in a parking lot at the apartment complex on Saturday night. The victim had been shot. Beckley police are investigating the shot fired at Moore.

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