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Ursinus Cancels Classes, 153 Sick; Taxis Protest in Center City; Firehouse 'Brownouts' Ended
 
  by: iradioal - Philadelphia, PA
started: 02/11/16 6:14 pm | updated: 02/11/16 6:14 pm
 
Ursinus College has cancelled classes for the rest of the week out of 'an abundance of caution' following the outbreak of a gastrointestinal illness that swept across campus. On Thursday the number of ill students, staff, and faculty rose to 153. It began Tuesday night and by Wednesday dozens were heading to the on-campus wellness center as well as local hospitals and urgent care centers. The symptoms include diarrhea, vomiting and abdominal pain. The Montgomery Health Department is still trying to determine the cause of the outbreak. The cafeteria has been closed and sanitized as well as other common areas. Local Collegeville businesses including the Collegeville Italian Bakery, Wawa, and Wegmans have been bringing food to campus to feed students while the cafeteria remains closed.

Around one thousand Philadelphia taxi and limo drivers brought Center City traffic to a stand still around noon Thursday in protest of ride sharing services like Lyft and Uberx. Drivers clogged the streets with their cabs around City Hall. Ride share services are currently not regulated in the City of Philadelphia unlike the rest of the state, while taxis are under the purview of the PPA. Cab drivers face fees, licenses, inspections and costly medallions. They want this competition shut down or equally regulated. A similar protest was held in December 2015.

Mayor Jim Kenney announced today an end to the fire department 'brownout' policies set by former Mayor Nutter. They included temporarily taking fire companies out of service and rotating senior firefighters through different stations. They were meant as cost saving measures. City Controller Alan Butkovitz did a full audit of the Fire Department and concluded that the brownouts did not save the city any money and actually hurt public safety by increasing fire response time.

Tonight,
Partly Cloudy, temperatures around 24 this evening in Center City

 
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