Area Sci-Fi Fans Remember Leonard Nimoy

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SCRANTON — It was a sad day for the Hollywood community and sci-fi lovers all around who admired Leonard Nimoy. The news of his passing upset many people in our area. Nimoy was not only a star on television and movies, you can find his beloved “Mr. Spock ” in the comics books like those […]

Frozen Until Further Notice In Shenandoah

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SHENANDOAH — Even though it’s still winter, hoses are out in Shenandoah. Neighbors are using them to help their neighbors who don’t have water because of frozen pipes. This is day 12 without water for some residents in Shenandoah and people are saying the water company in the borough won’t help them out, so some […]

Spring Just Over the Hill?

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Mike Stevens opens the door to the PhotoLink Library this week with some disturbing news as winter hangs on.  But, he says, we should hang on and watch for spring just over the hill.

Bank Fined for Failure to Report “Kids for Cash” Transactions

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DUNMORE — First National Community Bank (FNCB) has been fined $1.5 million by federal authorities for not reporting suspicious transactions by one of the judges convicted in the “Kids for Cash” scandal. U.S. Department of Treasury investigators said Michael Conahan was on the FNCB board of directors and disguised the money he made from the […]

Thawing Frozen Pipes in Hazleton

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HAZLETON — The Hazleton City Authority began the week with reports of 100 buildings without water. Hazleton City Hall was one of the buildings with frozen pipes, the building even had to shut down for a day when crews fixed it. That problem is all cleared up now, so water crews are now fighting the […]

Freeland Finally Free Of Frozen Water Problems

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FREELAND — It’s been a long week for some residents in Freeland dealing with frozen water pipes, but those troubles may finally be coming to an end. The mayor lifted the state of emergency Friday afternoon as nearly everybody has water. The Freeland Municipal Authority was overwhelmed with the frozen water pipes, and even though […]

School Supports Family That Lost Home In Fire

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LACKAWANNA COUNTY — Less than two weeks after losing their home in a fire in Lackawanna County, the Guse family got quite the gift from their “extended” family. Students participated in spirit week at North Pocono High School in Moscow, all while raising money for the Guse family. The Guse family’s dad is the old […]

Pennsylvania nuclear reactor returns to full power after ‘hot shutdown’

Posted by Reblog: Lehigh Valley News.

Exelon Corp. says repairs were made to the valve that failed Monday night on one of the Limerick Generating Station Unit 1 reactor's main steam lines.

The southeastern Pennsylvania nuclear reactor that unexpectedly shut down Monday night was returned to full power Friday, owner Exelon Corp. announced.

Repairs were made to a valve that closed automatically on one of the Limerick Generating Station Unit 1 reactor’s main steam lines, according to a news release from the company.

The valve closed due to a broken fitting, Exelon spokeswoman Dana Melia had said. The Unit 2 reactor at Limerick, in Montgomery County about 30 miles south of Allentown, was unaffected by Monday’s incident.

The incident forced the automatic shutdown of the reactor. It remained in what is known as hot shutdown, with control rods inserted in the reactor core, until Friday when Exelon restarted it.

A restart from hot shutdown can take hours to reach full power, much quicker than the gradual ascent in power required from a cold shutdown, said Neil Sheehan, spokesman for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission.

The valve closure caused reactor pressure to rise beyond a pre-determined point that forced the automatic shutdown, the NRC had said.

“It was an unplanned shutdown or a forced outage,” Sheehan said. “It would not qualify as an unusual event or any kind of emergency because it doesn’t meet the criteria for that.”

If a reactor has more than three unplanned shutdowns, also known as scrams, during 7,000 hours of operation, its NRC performance indicator changes from green to white, prompting additional scrutiny. Limerick’s Unit 1 had seen a rolling average of 0.9 scrams during the previous 7,000 hours of operations, Sheehan said.

“This will be added to that,” he said. “At this point it still keeps them below that threshold … . It’s obviously something that they’re going to need to be cognizant of.”

Sheehan noted that NRC inspectors will follow up on the incident.

The outage did not impact electrical service to regional customers, Exelon said. Limerick’s twin, 1,200-megawatt reactors produce enough carbon-free electricity to power approximately two million homes.

“Everything Natural” Up For Sale

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CLARKS SUMMIT — A health food store in Lackawanna County is up for sale, but the owners will only sell on one condition: that the buyer has to continue the store’s 30-year mission. Barry Kaplan, his wife, and sister-in-law had an idea for a business 30 years ago that some thought would never be successful. […]

Beneful dog food sickens, kills pets, lawsuit claims; Purina says kibble is safe

Posted by Reblog: Lehigh Valley News.

The Food and Drug Administration has not issued any warnings about Beneful.

A California man alleges Beneful sickened his dogs and is suing manufacturer Nestle Purina PetCare.

Frank Lucido in a U.S. District Court lawsuit filed this month claims he fed Beneful dry food, or kibble, to his three dogs and within days two were sickened and one was dead, according to an Associated Press report. He alleges the food contains a chemical found in automobile antifreeze and toxins produced by grain fungus.

Lucido claims there have been thousands of online complaints over the last four years about dogs becoming ill or dying after eating Beneful, the report says. Dogs’ symptoms in the complaints include internal bleeding, liver failure, kidney failure, seizures, vomiting, diarrhea, dehydration and weight loss.

In a statement, Purina said the food is safe and “consumers can continue to feed Beneful with total confidence.” 

The Food and Drug Administration has not issued any warnings about Beneful. A spokeswoman said the FDA does not comment on pending litigation, according to the report.

Nestle Purina has a facility in South Whitehall Township, but Beneful is not among the pet foods produced there, spokesman Keith Schopp said in an email.

The suit is asking California’s Northern District court to expand the case to include other people whose dogs were sickened, the report says. Lucido’s seeking unspecified damages and restitution, but the suit says claims top $5 million.

Purina said the company believes Lucido’s suit is baseless and will vigorously defend itself and the brand.

“Beneful had two previous class-action suits filed in recent years with similar baseless allegations, and both were dismissed by the courts. Class-action suits are common in business these days.  They are not indicative of a product issue,” the statement says. 

“Like other pet foods, Beneful is occasionally the subject of social media-driven misinformation. Online postings often contain false, unsupported and misleading allegations that cause undue concern and confusion for our Beneful customers.”, a website devoted to debunking urban legends, Internet rumors and other questionable stories, has a page devoted to claims that Beneful sickens dogs. The site indicates that complaints like the one referenced in Lucido’s lawsuit date back to 2007 and are, so far, unproven.

Precious Petty may be reached at Follow her on Twitter @precpetty. Find Lehigh County news on Facebook.