The Tribune Democrat, Johnstown, PA

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April 8, 2013

Local News in Brief | High-speed chase reported on turnpike

SOMERSET — An alleged retail theft at a Verizon store in Somerset sparked a high-speed chase on the Pennsylvania Turn­pike on Monday evening, Somerset 911 officials said.

The incident was reported at 8 p.m.

A suspect fled on North Center Avenue, according to reports. A 911 supervisor said the vehicle eventually ended up on the turnpike and was headed west with an unknown number of vehicles pursuing. Somerset Borough police and state police were involved in the chase, the supervisor said.

A trooper at Somerset’s turnpike barracks said the chase quickly passed through their jurisdiction. He referred calls to borough police, who could not be reached for comment late Monday.

DEP provides $135G for water project

ST. BENEDICT – The state Department of Environmental Protection will provide a $135,000 grant to the West Carroll Township Water and Sewer Authority to help in the cost of extending municipal water to homes in the St. Benedict area.

State Rep. Gary Haluska, D-Patton, in announcing the grant Monday, said the money will be used to help pay the cost of materials for the project.

He said many homeowners in the St. Benedict area have been waiting for decades for a reliable and safe water supply.

“Abandoned deep coal mines have adversely impacted many wells in the St. Benedict area,” Haluska said. “Getting public water to these homes was important for the health and safety of residents.”

Odor causes UPJ evacuation

The University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown’s Engineering & Science building was temporarily evacuated Monday afternoon because of a gas-like smell, school officials said.

UPJ officials said the evacuation was brief. The odor apparently was caused by fumes drawn into the building’s ventilation system from construction work next door at the Nursing and Health Sciences building.

Students were allowed to return to the engineering building around 3 p.m., about a half hour after the initial evacuation, according to a post by school officials on UPJ’s official Facebook page.

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