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Poison Center Expects Increase In Callsposted May 27th, 2016
Already this year, the Illinois Poison Center hotline has helped just under 35,000 people. Center Director Carol DesLauriers expects an increase in calls in the months ahead. She says the phone line usually sees a 10% to 20% increase in calls during the summer months. DesLauriers tells WDCB News a majority of the calls about accidental poisoning the center gets are about children. Kids learn about their environment by exploring and putting things in their mouth. She says often times things like Tiki-Torch oil smells good and looks like a sweet drink. DesLauriers says all it takes to put a child at risk is one swallow of the lamp oil. While DesLauriers says lamp fuels can be fatal, the Poison Center resolves 90 percent of accidental poisoning calls without a trip to the hospital.
For more information, call 800-222-1222.
Amtrak Explores Union Station Developmentposted May 26th, 2016
A project that is in the very early stages, could fulfil famed architect Daniel Burnham’s vision for Chicago’s Union Station. Amtrak is soliciting proposals from developers for what could be a massive project in the West Loop. The Metropolitan Planning Council’s Peter Skosey says the development and redevelopment would be a boost for Chicago’s economy. He says it would also help move passengers through the station more quickly. Skosey tells WDCB News there is a lot of potential. He says there is land available for redevelopment, south of Union Station, Amtrak owns a parking garage, and southeast of the station there is space for development above some train tracks. Skosey there's also the possiblity of building on top of Union Station. He points out Daniel Burham designed the building to have another 16 stories added at a later date. Skosey says on an annual basis, Union Station handles more passengers than Midway airport. He says redeveloping the space would make it easier for travelers to get in and out of the station and as result increase capacity. Ultimately the goal is to insure the future viability of Amtrak’s third busiest station.
Environmentalists Warn of Threat From Invasivesposted May 23rd, 2016
A coalition of environmental groups says an amendment buried in the recently approved U.S. Defense budget bill puts the Great Lakes at risk. The Chicago based Alliance for the Great Lakes is among those crying foul over a limit to the Clean Water Act that was tagged onto the defense bill. The Alliance’s Jennifer Caddick says the change increases the risk of invasive species coming into the lakes in the ballast water of freight ships. She tells WDCB News it’s hard to even understand the motivation for the amendment. Caddick says the groups think the rules, as they are written, have helped to stop invasive species; but she says making sure everyone complies with the rules requires a strong Clean Water Act. Caddick says it empowers environmental watchdog groups to fight companies and government agencies. Caddick says ships dumping ballast water is the most common way invasive species get into the Great Lakes and other fresh water supplies. Watchdogs use the Clean Water Act to sue the government to insure compliance with laws, the amendment eliminates that ability.