Traffic Backup on I-80
We're getting word into the newsroom that a portion of Interstate 80 has become a parking lot. PennDOT's Rick Mason tells us that due to a Thursday morning crash of a big rig at mile marker 238... between Lime Ridge and Lightstreet.. westbound traffic is backed up to mile marker 251. That's four miles into Luzerne County. Eastbound traffic isn't any better according to PennDOT. Traffic is backed up to the Buckhorn interchange in Columbia County. If your plans take you through that area... please take an alternate route.
An Orangeville woman is dead after she lost control of the car she was driving and it ended up in a field. State Police say 56 – year old Alice Morris died shortly before 6 O'clock Thursday morning when her sport utility vehicle went off the side of Harrison Road... ending up in a field in Fishing Creek Township. Harrison... between Asbury and Country Roads... was shut down for a few hours while authorities conducted their investigation.
Flood / Businesses
Dozens of businesses across Columbia County are trying to get back on their feet after last month's flood. Columbia – Montour County Chamber President Fred Gaffney says loans are available from the Small Business Administration... but don't discount your local banker. Gaffney says... in many cases... the deals being promoted by local bankers have a better interest rate than the federally – backed SBA.
Budget preparations are underway for the Town of Bloomsburg. Now... there's word that Mayor Dan Knorr is floating the idea of a temporary... so-called “Flood Tax” on property owners. The Press – Enterprise is reporting in today's edition... that before that happens... council wants to see how much they'll be reimbursed from FEMA for money spent from a $700,000 surplus fund... designed specifically for emergencies. Thus far... the town has spent an estimated $490,000 for recovery from last month's flooding.
If you use the Interstate 80 Lightstreet interchange... it's been pretty dark recently. PennDOT says a contractor performing work along State Route 487 in Scott Township... damaged some underground wiring... which powers the lights. An agency spokesperson says a time table for fixing the problem has not been established.
The financially troubled city government in Harrisburg has filed for bankruptcy. Earlier this week... the City Council voted to approve the move. A spokesman for Mayor Linda Thompson says council's actions are illegal. In a petition for bankruptcy... debts total just over 400 – million dollars
Bloomsburg Police Chief Leo Sokoloski has come out with the statistics gathered during last weekend's Bloomsburg University homecoming event. Overall... 24 traffic citations were issued. Of that... one driver was arrested for DUI. Citations were handed out to 22 people for underage alcohol violations... and five were busted on a charge of public drunkenness.
PennDOT says a fix is in the works to help alleviate traffic accidents on the Airport Beltway... north of Hazleton in Luzerne County. The agency says a traffic light will be installed... and the road widened. The highway links Route 93 with 309 in Hazle and Sugarloaf Townships. An accident earlier this week claimed the life of a McAdoo man.
Could the double murder trial of Hugo Selenski be put off until after the first of the year? That's a possibility since Judge Joseph Van Jura's term ends January 2nd. Right now... everything is ready to start Selinski's trial on November 14th. But there's a possibility the trial wouldn't end by December 28th. Selenski is accused of murdering Tammy Fassett and Michael Kerkowski in May of 2002... with their bodies found in a grave near Selenski's Kingston Township home the following year.
A Hazleton man was treated for injuries after he was struck by a car at the intersection of West Broad and Route 924 in Hazleton last night. Police say 18 – year old Christopher DeJesus – Genao received head and leg injuries. He was dressed in dark clothing and wearing headphones when he was struck. The driver of the car is identified as Suzanne Lyate of Hazle Township.