Flooded basements, poles on fire-water over top of washer and dryer in Westmoreland County

(Stock Image) AKVNEWS

WESTMORELAND COUNTY, Pa. – 911 in Westmoreland County has been dispatching volunteer fire departments for just about everything in the book as rain in some areas is estimated to be about two inches or more late Saturday evening. Routes 981, 119, and 819 have been impacted with roadway closings due to low lying areas and clogged drains.

Residents and motorists have been dealing with mud slides, trees down, heavy flooding in basements as high as the washer and dryer, wires down, flooded roadways and even a report of a telephone pole on fire in a girl scout camp.

The National Weather Service in Pittsburgh issued a flood advisory for Westmoreland County until 1045 pm. The good news is that as the evening wears on, rainfall will continue to decline.
Tonight forecast is for an 80% chance of rain, and a chance of scattered thunderstorms overnight. Sunday – Partly cloudy with afternoon showers or thunderstorms. High 77F. Winds light and variable. Chance of rain 60%.

As of 9:23 pm, most of the Alle-Kiski Valley has been spared of heavy rains. There has been very few calls to local fire departments for help in the immediate area.


New Kensington Police respond to armed home invasion

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer 9:09 am

NEW KENSINGTON, Pa. – Law Enforcement Officer Robert LaPorte and additional police officers were dispatched at 8:12 am for a report of a home invasion/armed robbery in the 500 block of Third Avenue after an intruder/s entered the residence, then stole the victims vehicle and two cell phones. New Kensington Police put out a BOLO for the following suspect or suspects: A description for one of the actors – Light skinned black male, red bandanna was over the face, black ball cap and blue jeans.

A 2006 blue Cadillac STS was taken with a registration number – JKY-5304. The license place has a Fox Ford Plate holder. Possible direction of travel was Industrial Boulevard. Extreme caution should be exercised if you see this vehicle, actors may be armed.

If seen, contact New Kensington Police at (724) 339-7534 or Westmoreland 911.


Body recovered from the Allegheny River at Tarentum

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer

TARENTUM, Pa. – (UPDATE:)  Divers and search crews located the body of a man who witnesses say jumped from the Tarentum Bridge Thursday evening around 7:30 pm.  The body is believed to be Michael Swiklinski of Tarentum, who’s vehicle was found parked in the eastbound lane of the bridge.  The search was preceded by a half hour briefing at Eureka Fire Rescue as authorities mapped out the days search.  

Throughout the day, divers took turns scouring the river just yards downstream from the bridge piers.  In the early hours, the marina was buzzing with rescue/recover boats, additional divers and support teams from all over the Alle-Kiski Valley, including Murrysville and Blawnox water rescue teams.  By 3-4 pm, residents from local communities stopped at the marina, some with young kids to watch the activities on the river.  AKVNEWS spoke with several followers of AKVNEWS and most readers commented that closure for the family was the focus for today.  Several readers thanked AKVNEWS for it’s sensitivity to the family going thru this most difficult tragedy.  By 6:20 pm, the recovery process was complete.

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer

 Skilled divers and trained search crews with dogs continue their search for a man who jumped from the Tarentum Bridge late Thursday evening. Divers are methodically searching an area just down river from where witnesses said the jump took place.

Multiple search units from Blawnox, Lower Kiski, Eureka, and others continue to rotate and rehab search shifts in dangerous underwater river current conditions. The areas of search are approximately 15-25′ deep, however the river bottom is uneven and speed of current is unpredictable in many areas.

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer

In the photo above, a recreational boater headed for a dock in Brackenridge was diverted towards the Tarentum shoreline with escort past the boat launch. It was reported the Coast Guard has shut the river down for normal daily traffic, however authorities are making minor accommodations as pleasure boaters near the area. Boat traffic should not encroach the search areas.



Tragedy in Tarentum

AKVNEWS STATEMENT – (Friday, August 1, 2014) 12:35 am

Out of respect for those immediate family members, friends, and acquaintances, AKVNEWS will not publish any photos or factual information concerning the events that occurred Thursday evening at or near the Tarentum Marina.


Bank robbery in Leechburg

Farmers and Merchant Bank

Farmers and Merchant Bank

LEECHBURG, PA. – A reported bank robbery at the Farmers and Merchant Bank in Leechburg this morning at approximately 10:50 am had police searching for a man in his 50′s, approximately 5’10″, 200 lbs. He was described as wearing a blue shirt, ballcap and jeans.

Leechburg PD Officer Schaeffer said an undisclosed amount of cash was taken and multiple investigative authorities are either on scene or notified of the robbery. Allegheny Township Police assisted Leechburg PD.

The bank will reopen Friday morning. No injuries were reported in the incident.


Two charged in ongoing investigation into PennDOT corruption and fraud

Thanh Nguyen ------Robert Slamon

Thanh Nguyen ——Robert Slamon

NORRISTOWN – ( July 31, 2014 ) Attorney General Kathleen G. Kane today announced charges against two individuals affiliated with PennDOT, who allegedly conspired in the theft of more than $3.6 million in taxpayer money.

These are the latest charges in an ongoing investigation into potential corruption and fraud involving PennDOT District 6, which includes Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia counties.

The Office of Attorney General began its investigation of possible illegal activity at PennDOT District 6 in March of 2013. Evidence and testimony regarding the case was presented to a statewide investigating grand jury, which recommended the criminal charges being filed today.

Contractor Thanh Nguyen, 62, 405 Ashton Drive, King of Prussia, Montgomery County, who has received $26 million Continue reading…


Home Invasion In Tarentum

(Stock Image)

TARENTUM, PA. – An incident of home invasion has Tarentum Police looking for three suspects after a residence in the 200 block of Conroy Way was invaded late Thursday night at 10:51 pm.

A BOLO was put out for three suspects, two were said to be black and one was white. Pistols were brandished in the invasion according to BOLO information. Faces were hidden with bandannas and one suspect wore a gray hoody and jeans and the other wore a black hat. Police said the suspects fled the scene in an older black car.

If you have any information on this incident, you are asked to call Tarentum Police at 724-224-1515 or Allegheny County 911.


Woman suffers burns as fire levels mobile home in Harrison Township

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer 3:50 am

HARRISON TOWNSHIP, PA. – A swift moving fire destroys a mobile home on Pleasant Avenue in Harrison Township Wednesday morning at 2:00 am. Fire companies from Harrison Township arrived at the mobile home residence just off Bull Creek Road to find the mobile home fully involved in flames.

Hilltop Hose Fire Chief Tom Wesolowski said crews went into to a defensive operation as most of the structure was already fully involved by the time they arrived. Several sources at the scene reported a female was seen crawling from a window and reportedly suffered burns to the upper part of her body. Chief Wesolowski said the woman suffered 2nd and 3rd degree burns over 24.5% of her body. As fire crews battled the blaze, ammunition could be heard exploding over radio communications and when AKVNEWS arrived on scene, additional small explosions from the ammo could be heard. A firearm has been recovered from the scene and turned over to Harrison Township Police.

Crews dispatched to the scene included Hilltop Hose Company #3, Harrison Hills, and Citizens Hose fire departments including Citizens Hose EMS. Harrision Township police was assisted by Tarentum PD and the American Red Cross was also on scene. As of 4:45 am, the fire scene was turned over to the Allegheny County Fire Marshal to determine the cause of the fire. It’s believed the fire possibly started with a propane supply line rupturing.

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer

© Hotshot Images by AKVNEWS/Paul R. Lowes/Staff Photographer

Chief Wesolowski said all fire companies involved worked good together fighting the fire.