Smoke from Canadian wildfires will continue to drift south over our area through at least today. The Environmental Protection Agency says sensitive groups, like those with heart or lung conditions, older adults, children and pregnant women should consider taking steps to reduce exposure. That would include avoiding strenuous outdoor activities, keeping outdoor activities short and consider moving physical activities indoors or rescheduling them.
Canadian wildfires caused a gray, hazy sky Tuesday and residents certainly noticed. "I thought somebody was cooking, but then I realized it smelled like fire. I told my husband that everything looked so gray everywhere," one woman says. Similar visibility issues are expected through today.
An Easton woman will be sentenced September 13th after admitted to shaking her baby in 2021, causing brain bleeds, which led to seizures and surgery. 32-year-old Catherine Erickson has pleaded guilty to aggravated assault and child endangerment charges. Combined, those offenses could leave her in jail for up to 27 years. The abuse came to light in June 2021 after her three-month-old baby nearly died.
According to AAA East Central's latest report, the average price for a gallon of gas dropped just a bit in both the Lehigh Valley and across Pennsylvania. In Pennsylvania, the average price was $3.66 as of Tuesday, down two pennies from the previous week, but $1.29 below where it stood last June 6. In the Lehigh Valley, the average price also dropped two cents down to $3.60 a gallon. That's $1.39 less than one year ago.
Pennsylvania State Police are investigating the theft of a portable toilet in Carbon County. Police say a handicap-accessible portable toilet was stolen from the parking lot entrance of Bear Creek Lake. It was last seen on the evening of May 31. The toilet is valued at $4,000.
Many nurses from around the state are letting their voices be heard in Harrisburg. They rallied in front of the state capitol Tuesday to support a safe staffing bill that passed through the House Health Committee last month. House Bill 106 would limit the number of patients each nurse has to cover to ensure safety for patients. They say for every patient more than four that's assigned to a nurse, the risk of a patient dying increases by 13-percent. The bill is sponsored by Representative Thomas Mehaffie of Hershey.
State lawmakers won't be voting on the use of speed cameras this week. The House Transportation Committee put off a planned vote on House Bill 1284, which would expand use of the cameras in certain situations. The bill specifically would cover such systems in active work zones, as well as two pilot programs; one for designated highways and another for some school zones. Democratic sponsor Representative Ed Neilson of Philly -- who chairs the committee -- says he intends to schedule another meeting soon to take up that bill.
The Pennsylvania House Aging and Youth Committee has voted unanimously to approve House Bill 1184, which will extend a moratorium on applying cost-of-living increases. The measure will be used to determine eligibility for recipients of the Prescription Drug Assistance Program for another two years until the end of 2025. Committee Majority Chair Patty Kim of Dauphin county says the extension will benefit nearly 30-thousand seniors across the state. Over 19-thousand seniors were set to lose eligibility this year due a cost of living increase in Social Security of nearly nine-percent.
The makeup of the jury considering the case against accused Tree of Life shooter Robert Bowers is changing. Bowers is accused of killing 11 worshipers at the synagogue in Squirrel Hill in October of 2018. One juror was excused from the trial on Tuesday with no reason being provided. An alternate juror took their place yesterday as the court heard testimony from witnesses including a Pittsburgh SWAT officer and a forensic pathologist.
A state Rep. from northeastern Pennsylvania wants to make sure students understand the impact of the Sept. 11, 2001 attacks. Rep. Jim Haddock introduced legislation that would require schools to observe a moment of silence to annually recognize Sept. 11. The legislation would also direct the Department of Education to identify curriculum, which would be optional on a school-by-school basis, that would teach kids about the significance of the historical event. The legislation passed the House and now moves to the Senate.
A Franklin County fisherman has shattered Pennsylvania's fishing record with a massive catfish from the Susquehanna River. The Flathead Catfish pulled in by Michael Wherley weighed in at 66 pounds and 6 ounces. It broke the previous record by nearly 10 pounds for a fish caught three years ago along the Schuylkill River. The new record was deemed official after a check from a Pennsylvania Fish and Boat Commission official, who inspected and weighed the fish in person.
As he promised, former New Jersey Governor Chris Christie has officially entered the race for the presidency in 2024. Christie made the announcement at a town hall last night in New Hampshire. The Republican first ran in 2016 and dropped out of the race to support former President Trump but this time, he's expected to portray himself as the most anti-Trump Republican option available. He'll try to become the first New Jerseyan to win the White House in more than a century -- since Woodrow Wilson was elected in 1912. Christie joins a crowded Republican field that includes former President Trump, Florida Governor Ron DeSantis, South Carolina Senator Tim Scott and former South Carolina Governor Nikki Haley. Former Vice President Mike Pence is scheduled to announce his candidacy today.