May 2, 2014 Newscast 1: Eleanor Stanford

For Columbia Radio News, I’m Eleanor Stanford.

An F train derailed around 10.40am this morning in Queens, injuring 19 people. Four of these passengers were seriously injured. The six middle cars went off the tracks near the 65th Street and Roosevelt Ave stops. MTA officials said that firefighters evacuated 1,000 passengers over the course of an hour.

The evening rush hour service will be affected on the E F M and R trains in both directions. There are currently shuttle buses in place. And passengers are advised to take the 7 train to reach Manhattan.

The cause of the derailment remains unknown. The train’s operator and conductor will be tested for drugs and alcohol.

The US Department of Energy says it will store emergency reserves of gasoline around New York Harbor and Boston. This is to avoid a repeat of the gas shortages following Superstorm Sandy, when thousands of drivers were left stranded without fuel. Officials say they hope to have the reserves in place by the end of summer. The hurricane season starts on June 1st.  

Mayor de Blasio praised the deal he has reach with the city’s largest teachers’ union on WNYC’s The Brian Lehrer Show this morning. The Mayor laid out what it will mean for teachers.

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DE BLASIO: Teachers that I’ve talked to so far appreciate that will finally be stability, that there will be respect for the profession and that we are rewarding the best teachers so they can help other teachers grow.

The deal is being praised as a possible blueprint for other outstanding contracts with the municipal workforce.

Con Edison has said today that it is launching a pilot program to have trucks scan for gas leaks across the city. This comes just six  weeks after a gas explosion in East Harlem that killed 8 people and injured more than 60 others.

A group of residents from an assisted-living facility for seniors in Park Slope have filed a lawsuit against the facility and the Department of Health. They are trying to keep Prospect Park Residence open. It is set to close in June.

This weekend, the Five Boro Bike Tour returns to New York City. Over 30,000 riders are expected to take the 42 mile route across the five boroughs, on roads closed to cars.

Eleanor Stanford, Columbia Radio News.

 

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