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Health
5:28 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Legionella Detected at UPMC Presbyterian; No Patients Sickened

Eleven patients from a unit at UPMC Presbyterian were moved to other parts of the hospital following the detection of legionella in several sinks in a recently-remodeled area.

There are no confirmed cases of Legionnaires’ disease, but UPMC spokeswoman Wendy Zellner said the patients were moved as a precautionary measure.

“We are following our normal Legionella monitoring and prevention protocols and expect the unit to reopen soon after proper remediation measures are taken,” Zellner said in a statement.

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Science & Technology
5:25 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

CMU's Supercomputer Gets a Boost

When computer science students return to Carnegie Mellon University this fall, many will be able to get their hands on a parallel computing system that is roughly 500 times faster than the best laptop computer on campus.

CMU was recently shipped 448 “blades” that were being decommissioned by the Los Alamos National Laboratory. As the federal facility upgrades its supercomputing system it usually sends the stripped down computers or “blades” to research facilities like CMU to allow students to experiment.

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Community
5:20 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Vintage Cars Rumble Through Downtown Pittsburgh

Chuck Berrington said he has wanted a Ford Model A since high school.
Jessica Nath 90.5 WESA

From a 1967 “Playboy Pink” Mustang to a 1957 red BMW Isetta so small that it doesn’t even have side doors, cars of all different shapes and sizes, years and make rumbled their way through the city Wednesday.

The Pittsburgh Vintage Grand Prix hosted a parade and a car show, one of the various activities leading to the largest vintage race event in the nation this weekend in Schenley Park.

During the parade, the cars started at Station Square and made four stops: the US Steel Plaza, PPG Place, Market Square and Point State Park.

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City Government
12:04 pm
Wed July 16, 2014

Peduto and Staff to Participate in Reddit 'Ask Me Anything' Forum Thursday

From pension plans to Act 47 and dog parks to bike lanes – many Pittsburghers have questions about the future of the city and Mayor Bill Peduto and his staff hope to have the answers.

That’s why he is taking to popular social media forum Reddit Thursday from 5:30 to 7:30 p.m. for the city’s first “Mayor’s Night On(line).”

Peduto has used Reddit in the past to connect to the community – especially while campaigning – but this is the first time he’s done so as mayor, and this time he’s doing it differently.

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Business
3:30 am
Wed July 16, 2014

PWSA Now Accepting Cash Payments at 7-Eleven Stores

Customers of the Pittsburgh Water and Sewer Authority now have another payment option at their disposal – cash payments at 7-Eleven stores.

“It’s a convenience for our customers who don’t have a bank account, a credit card, a debit card, they may be out of town,” said Melissa Rubin, a PWSA spokeswoman. “Cash payments can be made at any 7-Eleven across the U.S.”

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Government & Politics
10:14 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

New Law Gives Legal Aid for the Poor a Boost

Legal aid for the poor and disadvantaged is slated to get more funding under a measure approved by the legislature and signed by the governor this month.

Court fees are slated to increase in order to set aside more money to help eligible Pennsylvanians pay their legal bills when settling basic needs regarding things like housing, health and safety. The bill, sponsored by Rep. Tara Toohil (R-Luzerne), passed with nearly unanimous support in the House and Senate.

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Special Programming
9:00 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Today at Noon on Q: Zoo Animals and Their Discontents

Today on Q with Jian Ghomeshi, journalist Alex Halberstadt looks at the psychological problems of animals in zoos.
Credit Rob Bixby / Flickr

Essential Pittsburgh will take a summer break July 14th – 18th. We’ll return with live shows on July 21st.

While we’re away enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon. At 8pm find out what drives human behavior on the program The Really Big Questions (TRBQ) with Dean Olsher.

You can listen to past episodes of Essential Pittsburgh here or check out the podcast in iTunes.

Today at noon on Q, with Jian Ghomeshi: With his latest New York Times Magazine report “Zoo Animals and Their Discontents,” journalist Alex Halberstadt looks at the psychological problems of animals living in captivity.

At 8pm, The Really Big Questions, hosted by Dean Olsher: Today’s big question? Why does music move us? If music is a human universal, why do people of different cultures experience music differently?

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Transportation
2:50 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Port Authority Diverts Funds to Study Bus Rapid Transit Line

The Port Authority of Allegheny County approved shifting $1.56 million dollars from its capital budget to add to the amount needed to study a Bus Rapid Transit (BRT) line between downtown Pittsburgh and Oakland.

Port Authority Chairman Bob Hurley said an initial engineering and environmental study is a critical part of the process.

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Public Safety
1:51 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Indiana County Officials Look to Avert Another St. Patrick's Day Brawl

Some called it a brawl, others a riot, but however it was categorized, top officials in Indiana County want to make sure the incidents leading up to St. Patrick’s Day this year are not repeated next year.

The Indiana County Chamber of Commerce has gathered stakeholders to form a task force aimed at finding ways to better respond to such incidents and maybe even prevent them in the future. 

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Prescription Drug Addiction
12:18 pm
Tue July 15, 2014

Task Force Tackles Prescription Drug Addiction in PA

Health care providers wrote 259 million prescriptions for painkillers in 2012, enough for every adult in the U.S. to have a bottle of pills, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Gary Tennis, secretary of the Department of Drug and Alcohol Programs (DDAP), said that since 2000, prescription drug and heroin overdoses have quadrupled. 

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Public Safety
9:37 am
Tue July 15, 2014

2 Dead in Beaver County House Explosion

Authorities say a man and woman were killed in an early morning house explosion in a rural area of Western Pennsylvania.

Emergency dispatchers in Beaver County say the blast was reported at about 4 a.m. Tuesday at the residence in South Beaver Township, about 40 miles northwest of Pittsburgh.

Officer Jesse Richman said the victims, who were in their mid to late 60s, were inside the ranch-style home at the time.

Government & Politics
7:47 am
Tue July 15, 2014

Charters Dodge Special Education Funding Changes

A recently approved tweak to special education funding won’t apply to charter schools, after all. State lawmakers shied away from the changes after charters argued it would have been unfair.

There will be changes to the way traditional public schools receive any new funding for special education — it’ll be based on the needs of individual students and school districts, instead of being tied to an average special needs cost across the state.

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Special Programming
9:00 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Tonight on TRBQ: Why Are We Giving One Day and Greedy the Next?

What makes humans cooperate? Tune in to TRBQ tonight at 8 p.m.
Credit Flickr user Flazingo Photos

Essential Pittsburgh will take a summer break July 14th – 18th. We’ll return with live shows on July 21st. 

While we’re away, enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon. At 8pm find out what drives human behavior on the program The Really Big Questions (TRBQ) with Dean Olsher. 

You can listen to past episodes of Essential Pittsburgh here or check out the podcast in iTunes.

Today at noon on Q, with Jian Ghomeshi: Filmmaker Paul Verhoeven, the brains behind sensational films such as “Robocop” and “Showgirls,” sees his works of the 80’s assessed.

At 8pm, The Really Big Questions, hosted by Dean Olsher: Today’s program is all about the mysteries of cooperation, collaboration and altruism. What drives us to be greedy one day and giving the next?

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Pension Reform
5:34 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Corbett Touts Tobash's Pension Reform Plan in Shaler Township

Governor Tom Corbett talks pension reform with Alice Beckett-Rumberger (center), of the non-profit North Allegheny Foundation, and Tara Fisher, vice president of the North Allegheny School District board.
Credit Liz Reid / 90.5 WESA

Less than a week after Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Corbett ended the budget standoff with the state Legislature, he’s setting a new deadline for pension reform: election season.

Corbett was in Shaler Township Monday afternoon pushing an overhaul of the public pension system, which he said is necessary to help struggling school districts and stem the wave of rising property taxes.

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Health
4:29 pm
Mon July 14, 2014

Pittsburgh Awarded $200K To Provide Children With Health Insurance

Pittsburgh was awarded $200,000 to insure children in the city through Healthy Together.

The money was granted from the National League of Cities and was given to eight cities that showed a quality and feasible business plan to increase access to healthcare. Cities could receive up to $260,000 for their efforts.  

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Open Streets
11:55 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Downtown Streets to Close this Sunday for Community Festival

Several downtown Pittsburgh streets will be closed Sunday to host Pittsburgh's  first Open Streets event, which will include Tai Chi, Zumba, dance classes and a rock climbing wall--all for free.

Open Streets was started 30 years ago in Colombia.  It is a time when cities shut down sections of roads so that pedestrians, and cyclists can move about freely.

In Pittsburgh, streets from Market Square to the Clemente Bridge will be closed for the event, but Mike Carroll, an events coordinator from BikePGH says traffic will not be impacted too heavily.

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Essential Pittsburgh
11:23 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Noon and 8pm Programming for Monday, July 14th

Is constant distraction affecting our ability to appreciate literature?
Credit Kate Ter Haar / Flickr

Essential Pittsburgh will take a summer break July 14th – 18th. We’ll return with live shows on July 21st.

While we’re away enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon. At 8pm find out what drives human behavior on the program The Really Big Questions (TRBQ) with Dean Olsher.

You can listen to past episodes of Essential Pittsburgh here or check out the podcast in iTunes.

Today at noon on Q: Is constant distraction affecting our ability to appreciate literature? UK author Tim Parks and Globe & Mail editor Jared Bland debate that question.

At 8pm on The Really Big Questions, hosted by Dean Olsher: Why do humans feel the need to pair up? Hear from a variety of guests, including neurologist Lucy Brown, who says the brain of a person head-over-heels is similar to that of a person’s high on cocaine.

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Programming
10:47 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Special Programming: Week of July 14

This week, tune in for Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon and TRBQ with Dean Olsher at 8 p.m.

Essential Pittsburgh is taking a summer break this week.

While the show's away, enjoy the daily arts and culture program Q with Jian Ghomeshi at noon, and at 8 p.m. find out what drives human behavior on the program TRBQ with host Dean Olsher.

You can listen to past episodes of EP online or check out the podcast in iTunes.

About Q:

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Community
3:30 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Local Group Reclaims Vacant Land Through Micro-Grants and Education

Six months ago, the vacant lot next door to Linda Piso’s house in Knoxville was overgrown with weeds and was a haven for drug activity.

But Piso has since transformed the lot into a community garden.

“Right now I’m picking cucumbers,” Piso said on Saturday. “My garden is completely planted. I have lettuce, tomatoes, zucchini, cucumbers, peppers, and soon I’ll have a watermelon.”

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Transportation
3:30 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Study: PA's Rural Bridges Worst in the Country

Pittsburgh is known as “The City of Bridges,” but a recent study by national transportation research group TRIP suggests that there are other areas in the state whose bridges could use a little more attention.

The study, published Thursday, found that the condition of Pennsylvania’s rural bridges was the worst in the country. Pennsylvania’s country roads scored slightly better, at the 20th worst among the 50 states. The fatality statistics were grim—Pennsylvania has the 10th highest death rate on its country roads of any state.

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Celebrate Downtown
3:30 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership Celebrates 20th Anniversary

Santa Claus in the summer? The Pittsburgh Downtown Partnership (PDP) celebrating its 20th anniversary this week with dancing in the streets and Christmas in July, among other things.

The eight day celebration will highlight some of the most vibrant and attractive aspects of downtown Pittsburgh, says PDP President and CEO Jeremy Waldrup.

“It’s going to be a great opportunity to just get out and walk around our beautiful city,” Waldrup said.

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Health
3:30 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Pitt Study Explores Treating Depression Over The Phone

About 400,000 coronary artery bypass graft surgeries are performed in the U.S. each year, and roughly one in five patients goes on to experience clinical depression. But all that could change because of a telephone.

According to University of Pittsburgh researchers, monitoring patient depression and administering a nurse-led intervention via a phone call bi-weekly not only improves quality of life and mood, but it’s also cost-effective and cost-saving.

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Veterans
3:30 am
Mon July 14, 2014

Veterans to Receive Priority with Public Housing

Homelessness among veterans has increased in Pennsylvania by 46.2 percent since 2009 according to the National Coalition for the Homeless. To combat this growing number, a bill was just passed unanimously by the state Senate which would give veterans preferential treatment for public housing.

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Environment & Energy
12:40 pm
Sun July 13, 2014

What You Should Know About Crude Oil On Trains Coming Through PA

Credit Association of American Railroads; graphic: Natasha Khan and Alexandra Kanik / PublicSource

More trains carrying crude oil to East Coast refineries mean a greater risk of accidents. Derailments in Pennsylvania and throughout the country are a signal to some that an accident could be disastrous.

Why is more crude oil moving through Pennsylvania?

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Government & Politics
3:30 am
Sun July 13, 2014

New Law Raises Minimum Sentences For Hit-And-Run Drivers

Drivers who flee the scene of a vehicular homicide now face a stiffer sentence after Gov. Tom Corbett signed legislation last Monday that raised the sentence to a minimum of three years in jail.

“Kevin’s Law” is to honor a 5-year-old boy, from Wilkes-Barre, who was killed 18 months ago by a driver who drove away after the accident. Authorities finally caught the man who killed the boy, but he was sentenced to less than a year because of a loophole. Kevin Miller’s parents advocated for change.

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