Storm / Orangeville
It was a rough transition from late Thursday afternoon into early evening... as a violent storm blew through the region. In the parking lot of the Orangeville Fireman's Carnival... wave after wave of heavy rain and wind... with some quarter – sized hail tossed in for good measure. The weather downing trees on the Orangville – Berwick highway in two places... knocking out power and cable service.
Storm / Luzerne County
Hazleton... and the southern part of Luzerne County... took the brunt of last night's storm which swept across the region. The winds and rain knocked down trees... disrupted electricity and internet service... and generally made a mess of things. The hardest hit area appears to be Route 93 and Main Street in Sugarloaf Township. At last report... just over 2,000 PPL subscribers were without power... mostly in Sugarloaf, Black Creek and Butler Townships.
Traveler Greeted by Firemen
Long Island resident Frank Wiseman was on his way to Bloomsburg to take part in this weekend's dog show at the Fairgrounds. He was on Interstate 80 when initially hit the storm. Wiseman was headed to the Econo Lodge Motel at Buckhorn... in Hemlock Township... and he was greeted by firemen who were checking on a report of smoke in the building. Buckhorn Fire Chief Ken Wenner said he believes lightning struck the building... and produced smoke on the second floor. Guests were evacuated as a precaution.
Storm / Catawissa Fire
It appears lightning was the cause of an early Thursday evening fire which destroyed the home of the Kevin Sauer's family.... just off the 100 block of Hollow Road in Catawissa Township. It was spotted after a violent thunderstorm moved through the area... working its way to the southeast. Catawissa Assistant Chief Mike Lindamuth says there wasn't anything firemen could do to save the structure. Lindamuth said the Sauer's family escaped the flames... but will have to start over. A collection of antique cars in an adjacent garage was not damaged.
An estimated 1,000 PPL subscribers are still in the dark this morning from Thursday night's storm. There are just over 200 homes in the dark in Montour County. PPL telling us repair crews have been working overnight. At the height of Thursday night's storm... an estimated 3,000 people in Columbia County were without juice.
David Millard / Flood Protection
Despite being turned down this week by the US Army Corps of Engineers for a flood protection system on Bloomsburg's west side... there is a ray of hope. This time from State Representative David Millard of Millville. He's introduced House Bill 1916... which initially earmarked $20 - million for a flood wall... but that has changed to flood protection. Rep. Millard says the measure is now in the house rules committee. No word when it could be placed on the agenda for a vote.
One of Jerry Sandusky's sexual assault victims is threatening to sue Penn State University. We know the man as Victim 2. Now, his lawyers say they have enough evidence to show that the school didn't do enough to protect him from Sandusky's sexual attacks. The University said it was taking the case seriously. Sandusky is in the Centre County jail... awaiting his sentence for his sex assault conviction.
Luzerne County Property Taxes
If you live in Luzerne County...you won't see an increase in the property tax rate next year. Instead County Manager Robert Lawton says he wants to trim spending by an estimated $2 – million to prevent a year – end deficit. Lawton is the first – ever manager under Home Rule, which went into effect the first of the year. He made his remarks while speaking with the Citizen's Voice editorial board.
State Senator John Gordner of Berwick says the State Department of Environmental Protection is accepting applications from small businesses for pollution prevention and energy efficiency projects. Matching grants of up to $9,500 dollars are available to most small businesses within the Commonwealth. Gordner says businesses that employ less than 100 workers qualify for the program.
A bridge preservation projects covering ten bridges along Interstate 80 in four counties... including Columbia and Montour... is scheduled to start on Monday. The project begins over Fishing Creek near the Buckhorn exit... with traffic restricted to a single lane through work zones. The work includes includes concrete bridge deck repairs... bridge approach paving membrane waterproofing and new pavement marking. The work under the $1 – million contract is expected to be completed by the end of October.
The American Red Cross will be holding a blood drive in the Moose Exchanges Grille Room Friday starting at 11 O'clock. A spokesperson for the Bloomsburg chapter says all types of blood are need. As a spiff.... Bowling passes will be given to all donors.
Former Southern Columbia star Henry Hynoski begins his second season in the NFL today when the New York Giants open preseason camp in Albany, New York. Hynoski is the starting fullback for the defending Super Bowl champs who open the regular season September 5th at home against the Dallas Cowboys. Meantime, the New York Jets opened their pre – season training camp on Thursday in Cortland, New York.
The Philadelphia Phillies are on the road this weekend. They begin a three game series tonight against the Braves in Atlanta. You can catch all the action of tonight's match up starting with the pre – game show at 7 O'clock... with the first pitch scheduled for 7:35 on News Radio 930, 94.7, 104.3 & Berwick's 1280.
The opening ceremonies for the Olympic Games take place Friday in London. Those ceremonies will be on the NBC television network Friday night at 7:30.