Breaking Local News
The Charleston Fire Dept. will start training new firefighters today. It's one of the largest training classes in recent memory, with 13 new firefighters scheduled to take part. Eleven of those are from out of state. They'll train for the next fifteen weeks on things like how to knock down fires, and also water and vehicle rescues. Many of them are already paramedics, and will now train to fight fires.
A report has been issued about a February mining death. The state Office of Miners' Health, Safety and Training has cited Pocahontas Coal after a worker died in an underground mine elevator, because a safety device was deactivated and hadn't been inspected for at least a year. 43-year old Edward Finney of Bluefield died February 7th in the accident at Affinity Mine near Sophia in Raleigh County. Pocahantas Coal said in a statement they've modified their safety programs to incorporate state recommendations.
Police are investigating after a man was robbed at a park on Charleston's East End. Police say the man was walking through Living Aids Memorial Park on Elizabeth Street just before 11 p.m Saturday when the suspect came up and asked the man for a dollar. When the victim pulled out his wallet, the suspect pulled out a gun and demanded everything. The victim wasn't hurt, and he was able to call police, who are still investigating.
A man beaten with brass knuckles Saturday on Charleston's West Side has been taken to a Morgantown hospital. Police say the victim, Marvin Gillespie, was a random victim and suffered serious injuries around his right eye. The accused attacker, 22-year old Joshua Blanchett, was a fugitive from justice. Because of erratic behavior, Blanchett had to be arraigned by video because police didn't think it was safe to take him before a judge. Blanchett's next court date is this Thursday.
Alpha Natural Resources says it's reducing its production in the southern West Virginia coalfields and laying off miners. The company says the reductions will impact about 100 employees, but about 80 of them will be offered other positions. There are reports that Alpha is idling White Buck Coal's Pocahontas mine in Rupert. A section of the Grassy Creek Mine also will be shut down. Other plants in Nicholas, Greenbrier, Raleigh and Boone counties will also be impacted. The company says the reductions are primarily due to an oversupply of metallurgical coal resulting in a price drop.
Sen. Jay Rockefeller's office in Beckley attracted a bomb squad Thursday after the office received a suspicious package. The package came from outside the country and it wasn't expected, and it was sealed extra tight around the seems with tape, according to Beckley police. Rockefeller's office released a statement saying the staff felt the package needed "an extra set of eyes to determine its contents and intent" and wantedto ask for help from extra security screeners.
WVU has awarded its media rightsto certain athletic events. The $80 million, 12-year contract for multimedia rights goes to North Carolina-based IMG College. That's the same company WVU had previously struck a deal with before it was forced to rebid the contract after a review by the state attorney general's office found "significant errors and sloppiness" in how that deal was crafted. Two WVU Board of Governors members shouldn't have participated in reviewing the bids, but Attorney General Patrick Morrisey said he found "no evidence of intentional wrongdoing." WVU said Thursday the new partnership is effective this fall, for the 2013-14 school year.
Mudlisdes in Logan County have trapped people in their own neighborhoods. Road construction has been going on in the Lyburn area, and trees that have been cut can't hold the dirt. That had a road closed for several hours last week, and it happened again yesterday. The state has contracted with the construction company Vecellio and Grogan on the project.
Precautions are being taken after an employee at the WV Dept. of Education contracted legionaires pneumonia. The Center for Disease and Control's website says Legionnaires' pneumonia is caused by a type of bacteria called Legionella, found naturally in the environment, usually in water. This type of pneumonia can't spread from person-to-person contact. Some workers did their jobs from home on Thursday as a precaution. The Kanawha Charleston Health Department has an eye on the situation.
An American Idol winner is in town for tonight's Live on the Levee at Haddad Riverfront Park. Kris Allen take the stage around 7:45pm, and fireworks are scheduled for after the concert to honor the 10th anniversary of the Clay Center's opening and the Boy Scouts heading to the National Jamboree in Fayette County. The Boy Scouts National Jamboree starts Monday and runs through the 24th.