News in Brief

MSHA announces results of November impact inspections

ARLINGTON, Va. – The Mine Safety and Health Administration today announced that federal inspectors issued 189 citations and six orders during special impact inspections at 17 coal mines and six metal and nonmetal mines in November. Most of the coal mine inspections focused on compliance with respirable dust standards.

Begun in force in April 2010, the monthly inspections involve mines that merit increased agency attention and enforcement because of their poor compliance history or particular compliance concerns. MSHA conducted impact inspections at mines in Alabama, California, Illinois, Kentucky, New Mexico, North Carolina, Pennsylvania, Utah, Virginia, West Virginia and Wyoming.

The details of one inspection are listed below:

From Nov. 16-18, MSHA conducted an impact inspection at St. Mary’s Cement-Dixon Mine in Lee County, Illinois. Enforcement personnel issued 53 citations and five orders. Among their findings were nine guarding violations that exposed miners to moving machine parts and entanglement hazards; nine electrical violations that exposed miners to electrical shock hazards, and one violation for failure to conduct an adequate workplace examination. Inspectors also issued four unwarrantable violations and one withdrawal order that removed 12 miners from the facility until they received adequate task training on maintenance of a coal hopper and how to block it from hazardous motion.

Since April 2010, MSHA has conducted 1,064 impact inspections and issued 15,532 citations, 1,294 orders and 57 safeguards.


Gov. Matt Bevin touts charter schools to pastors

LOUISVILLE (AP) — Kentucky Gov. Matt Bevin has told a group of pastors that he has every intention of following through with his campaign promise to push for a charter school law in the state.

On Tuesday night, the Courier-Journal reports that Bevin told a crowd of roughly 100 pastors and community members at Christ Temple Christian Life Center in Louisville that he does not want to back down from the issue.

Bevin recently pledged in his inaugural address to push charter school legislation as a way to give parents and students alternatives to failing schools.

The Kentucky Pastors in Action Coalition has in previous years supported bringing charter schools to Louisville as a way to improve the lives of African-American and low-income families through access to quality education.


Man charged in crash that killed 5 pleads not guilty

MANCHESTER (AP) — The man Kentucky State Police say drove drunk and crashed, killing four people and an unborn child, has pleaded not guilty.

Multiple media outlets report troopers charged 40-year-old Jason Gibson on Thursday with four counts of murder and fetal homicide, among other charges. Gibson entered a not guilty plea Monday.

Kentucky State Police say Gibson was driving under the influence when his car crossed the center line and hit another car along the Hal Rogers Parkway. Judy Pennington-Adams, her pregnant daughter Tiffany, Tiffany’s son Kyson and family friend Charlene Lewis were all killed in the crash.

Gibson will be back in court Jan. 4 for a preliminary hearing.


TBI trying to identify suspect in 1980 homicide

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (AP) — State police are seeking help from the public in their investigation into a double homicide in Stewart County in 1980.

The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation says it is trying to identify a suspect in the deaths of Carla Atkins and Vickie Stout.

Authorities say they were last seen on Sept. 17, 1980, when they left home to walk about 1 mile to a store in Dover.

Authorities say they approached a blue truck as they were walking back home on State Route 79. Their bodies were found three weeks later in what is now known as Land Between The Lakes National Recreation Area. Witnesses have described the man driving the truck to forensic scientists.

Anyone with information about the case should call the TBI.


Company expanding Lexington operation, adding 30 jobs

LEXINGTON (AP) — A forklift truck manufacturer is expanding its Lexington facility, creating 30 full-time jobs.

Gov. Matt Bevin and Lexington Mayor Jim Gray announced the expansion on Tuesday in a news release from Bevin’s office.

Clark Material Handling Co. will invest nearly $4.8 million in the project. The state has approved tax incentives up to $500,000.

The release said Clark opened its Lexington facility in 1974 and moved its company headquarters there in 1985.

Clark’s Lexington campus will cover more than 162,000 square feet after the expansion. The company plans to begin producing its four-wheel electric ECX and its three-wheel TMX forklift trucks in Lexington in May. Those models were previously produced in San Luis Potosi, Mexico.


City of Paducah to install floodgates as river surges

PADUCAH (AP) — Paducah city staff has announced they will close the city’s floodwall against rising Ohio River waters.

Media outlets report city officials made the call Monday night to install the floodgates by the end of the week after the National Weather Service predicted the Ohio River would crest at 49 feet by Jan. 5.

City Engineer Rick Murphy says once crews and equipment are in place, the first 20 gates can be installed in 12 hours or less.

City spokeswoman Pam Spencer says the river seldom gets high enough to trigger closing the floodgates. It happens once about every five years. The last time was the spring of 2011.

Spencer says even with the Ohio River staying on its side of the floodwall, residents should remain alert to possible flooding.


Oldham voters approve packaged liquor sales countywide

LA GRANGE (AP) — Oldham County voters have approved the sale of packaged alcoholic beverages throughout the county.

WDRB-TV in Louisville reports the issue passed 5,688 to 3,420 Tuesday.

Packaged liquor was available in La Grange but not elsewhere.

Kentucky Artisan Distillery manager Liz Ratliff said people visiting the Crestwood facility expect to be able to taste the product.

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