Headlines for Sunday, June 19th

Another heat wave is expected to develop in the region this week.  High temperatures should reach into the upper 90s by the middle of the week and near 100 degrees.  Only a slight chance of rain is in the forecast for Thursday.  The latest 6-10 day and 8-14 day forecasts are indicating above-average temperatures and below-average rainfall.  Normal highs for mid June are in the middle 80s.

Most area banks and post offices will be closed on Monday for the Juneteenth observance.  June 19th is the newest federal holiday, which falls on a Sunday this year.  There will also be no mail delivery on Monday.  Most banks and post offices will reopen for business Tuesday.  Juneteenth became a federal holiday a year ago, honoring the end of slavery in America.

The U.S. Department of Labor’s Mine Safety and Health Administration is proposing nearly $1.2 million in civil penalties to a Macedonia coal mine operator.  Media reports say the operator, M-Class Mining LLC, continued to operate the mine without evacuating miners with a fire underground and the operator did not notify the MSHA about the fire.  The MSHA learned of the incident on August 14, 2021 through an annonymous source, the report said.  Following its investigation the MSHA concluded that the operator did not stop its operations and did not take immediate action to protect the miners.  A total of 14 citations were issued.  M-Class Mining LLC has 30 days to pay or contest the violations.

A Salem, IL man was arrested Friday on a charge of aggravated cruelty to animals after allegedly drowning a kitten in the Salem Reservoir.  Reports out of Salem said 56-year-old Jeffrey Steevens was upset with the kitten for its actions in the home, and allegedly placed it in a pet carrier, and then threw the kitten and the pet carrier into the reservoir.  Police say a witness saw Steevens throw the kitten into the water.  The states attorney is reviewing the case.

Area river stages this morning:  Little Wabash River east of Fairfield is at 7.56 feet.  Flood stage is 17 feet.  At Clay City the stage is 17.25 feet.  Flood stage is 18 feet.  At Carmi the stage is 4.07 feet.  Flood stage is 27 feet.  The Skillet Fork at Wayne City is at 5.25 feet.  Flood stage is 15 feet.  The Wabash River at Mt. Carmel is at 8.42 feet.  Flood stage is 19 feet.