train derailment

News Roundup
7:59 am
Thu March 3, 2011

Thursday morning's headlines

Sometimes hard to see, wood smoke is found to be more dominant pollutant in Tacoma than anyone had realized, according to a new study. The levels exceed federal standards.
Jon Froschauer AP

Making headlines around the Northwest this morning:

  • Tacoma's Wood Smoke Problem
  • New Superintendent for Seattle
  • More Lye Leaks From Wrecked Railcar
  •  

Unusual Readings of Tacoma Pollutants

Wood smoke is a presenting a bigger pollution problem in Tacoma than experts have thought, according to a newly released study by the Puget Sound Clean Air Agency. The News Tribune's Rob Carson writes diesel and gas emissions remain the  dominant pollutants:

But in Tacoma, the risks from wood smoke were as much as seven times higher than is typical in other urban areas. Potential health effects include cancer, lung damage, heart disease and nerve damage.

The agency's Ryan Dicks tells the Trib more people may be heating with wood stoves because it's cheaper. The high wood smoke readings pushed Tacoma past federal clean air standards, the only area in the state to get such a mark. 

 

Seattle Wonders "Who is Susan Enfield?"

Seattle headlines are dominated this morning by the school board firing of Superintendent Maria Goodloe-Johnson and her top finance and operations manager, Don Kennedy, in the wake of a financial scandal. KPLU's Jennifer Wing was at last night's meeting, packed with angry parents and teachers who cheered the results.

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Environment
10:01 am
Sun February 27, 2011

Freight train derails near Tacoma; at least 50 gallons of lye spilled

Crews work to pull away collided trains and get four overturned cars off the beach at Chambers Bay, near Tacoma, where two freight trains sideswiped, toppling several cars of sodium hydroxide (lye) Saturday evening.
Dan gigharbor.patch.com

Updated 12:15 p.m. Sunday, February 27: Authorities report the leak has since been repaired, according to a statement from West Pierce Fire & Rescue Sunday as reported by Q13 FOX TV. Authorities confirmed that about 50 gallons of sodium hydroxide spilled. Amtrak passenger service between Seattle and Portland has been suspended because of the accident.

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