4 people treated after chemical spill on highway
NEWBURGH (AP) — State police say a trooper and three drivers were taken to a hospital as a precaution after a chemical leak along a southwestern Indiana highway.
Indiana State Police Sgt. Todd Ringle says a semitrailer hauling a hazardous material leaked a portion of its load Monday morning onto Indiana 66 in western Warrick County. Ringle says the chemical contaminated several vehicles and that all lanes of the highway just east of Evansville were closed until midafternoon for cleanup work.
Ringle says the trooper and three drivers were decontaminated at the scene by firefighters before being transported to a hospital. The semi driver wasn't treated.
Ringle says the truck was headed to a nearby Alcoa plant.
Indianapolis police fatally shoot dog that injured 4 in home
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — A dog that attacked and injured a child and three adults inside an Indianapolis home was fatally shot by police officers.
Two officers with the Indianapolis Metropolitan Police Department were called to the home about 5:30 a.m. Monday on reports of a dog biting several people.
Police spokeswoman Officer Genae Cook says that when the officers arrived, the dog charged them and tried to attack them as well.
The Indianapolis Star reports that the two officers then fatally shot the dog.
Cook says the three adults and a child injured in the attack were treated for dog bites at an area hospital.
Police did not identify the breed of the dog involved and did not disclose the nature or severity of the victims' injuries.
The case remains under investigation.
Indiana Guard chief resigns days after civil suit's filing
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — The leader of the Indiana National Guard is resigning days after a former contract worker accused him of retaliating against her for reporting his alleged affair with a subordinate.
Gov. Eric Holcomb said Monday that Maj. Gen. Courtney Carr, the Indiana National Guard's adjutant general, submitted his resignation letter Saturday at the governor's "recommendation."
Holcomb says Carr's resignation is effective Friday. The governor said he's thanked Carr, who became the guard's leader in 2015, "for his service to our state and country."
Carr's resignation comes after Shari McLaughlin filed a civil lawsuit in Marion County Superior Court on Aug. 1 against Carr.
McLaughlin's suit alleges that after she reported Carr's alleged affair with a subordinate, she was retaliated against with false accusations and intimidation. She resigned last year.
Fire sweeps warehouse complex hit by April blaze
TERRE HAUTE (AP) — A fire has swept a vacant warehouse complex in western Indiana nearly four months after another blaze damaged the same site.
Terre Haute firefighters who were called to the warehouses on the city's north side around sunset Sunday battled flames as a large plume of smoke rose from the complex.
The fire near Terre Haute's Coy Park prompted authorities to temporarily halt nearby rail traffic and close a city street.
Norm Loudermilk is an arson investigator with the Terre Haute Fire Department. He tells WTHI-TV that an investigation is underway into the fire's cause, but Loudermilk says that because the warehouse was vacant, the cause is likely arson.
Fire crews responded to a fire at the same complex on April 28.
Medical providers urged to report vaping illnesses
INDIANAPOLIS (AP) — Indiana officials are asking health care providers to report any young patients with a history of vaping who unexpectedly developed severe respiratory illnesses.
The Indiana State Department of Health sent an advisory last week to Indiana hospitals and other health care providers after the states of Illinois and Wisconsin reported that numerous teenagers and young adults were hospitalized with severe respiratory illnesses.
Those patients reported using e-cigarettes in the weeks and months prior to their illness. The young patients experienced symptoms that included shortness of breath, fatigue and chest pain, and some became so ill they needed mechanical ventilation.
Although no cases have been reported in Indiana, the State Department of Health is urging medical providers to report any such cases to local county health departments "as soon as possible."
EPA to host meeting on sewer work near tainted site
FRANKLIN (AP) — Residents in a central Indiana city will get an update from federal officials this week about planned sewer work near a tainted industrial site.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency will host Wednesday's meeting at the Johnson County Library in Franklin.
Sewer work will begin soon in the city about 25 miles south of Indianapolis near the site of a plant electronics manufacturer Amphenol Corp. once operated.
Tests have confirmed groundwater and sewer vapors in the community have cancer-causing chemicals at levels exceeding Indiana's safe limits.
Amphenol and the city of Franklin will replace or re-line damaged sewers and remove contamination from the Amphenol site that remain around old sewers.
The EPA and Indiana regulators are coordinating their response to the Amphenol site and other nearby contaminated areas.
Project means new housing for 2K IU students
BLOOMINGTON (AP) — More than 2,000 Indiana University students have new campus housing after a mold outbreak pushed up renovations at two dormitories.
The renovations to the Foster Quad and McNutt Quad residence halls were originally set to take place throughout the 2020-2021 academic year.
But The Indianapolis Star reports the $56 million project that includes replacing heating, venting and air-conditioning systems was moved up after mold was found in both buildings last fall.
IU spokesman Chuck Carney says the buildings closed for that work in May. They're expected to re-open before the start of the 2020-2021 academic year.
Carney says the school contracted with off-campus apartments to house more than 2,000 students who would have stayed in the two residence halls.
The university also made other on-campus dorms available to students.
Arsenic fears didn't stall federal cleanup at school
EAST CHICAGO (AP) — Federal authorities are forging ahead with the Superfund cleanup of a lead-contaminated former school in northwestern Indiana, despite residents' concerns about the potential health risk from arsenic at the site.
The Environmental Protection Agency is overseeing the project to remove contaminated soil that began July 8 at the former Carrie Gosch Elementary school site in East Chicago. Concerned residents have said the agency moved too fast and ignored their concerns about a lack of adequate testing.
Mark Templeton, an attorney for opponents of the project, told The (Northwest Indiana) Times that the EPA does not inspire trust when it pushes ahead without addressing valid questions about testing and scope.
"EPA responses are often: 'There's no problem here. Trust us,'" Templeton said. "So you have EPA saying there's no problem here, without supporting documents."
The EPA said in a statement that it fielded public comments about the project in 2012 and is now "implementing the remedy selected" at that time.
That agency said "the original cleanup plan is still appropriate" and added that it had distributed informational flyers to the community before the cleanup began.
Private contractors have already removed 24 inches of clean top soil to reveal the contaminated earth beneath and covered the excavated site with tarps.
Templeton said opponents believe the EPA did not take enough samples to determine if arsenic exists at the site and that when it did, it relied too heavily on X-ray Fluorescence testing. According to the agency's own records, those tests can be inaccurate if lead and arsenic are both present, he said, adding that his clients desperately want EPA to conduct more tests to ensure the excavations will not endanger the community.
"Contamination was identified there in the late 1990s, and no records have been made available to establish the soil was ever remediated," Templeton said.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says long-term exposure to arsenic — usually through drinking water — can lead to an increased risk for diabetes, high blood pressure, and several types of cancer. The American Academy of Pediatrics says extended exposure to lead can inhibit a child's brain development.
The School City of East Chicago district superintendent relocated hundreds of Carrie Gosch Elementary students in August 2016 after dangerous lead levels were discovered at a property near the school.
The Superfund site includes the now-demolished West Calumet Housing Complex, where about 1,000 people were forced from their apartments after tests in 2016 found high lead levels in blood samples of some children. Soil tests found lead levels significantly above the federal safety standard.
East Chicago Mayor Anthony Copeland in April requested a more protective cleanup of West Calumet, urging the EPA to remove contaminated soil down to native sand, instead of just removing up to two feet of material.