Originally created 05/18/99

Across the area



Motorcycle crash kills Salley man

A Salley man died in a Columbia hospital from injuries he suffered in a motorcycle accident in Aiken County.

Bruce Corley, 33, suffered head injuries when he was thrown from his motorcycle Saturday on Secondary Road 113 in Wagener, said Cpl. Jones Gamble of the South Carolina Highway Patrol.

Mr. Corley was airlifted to Richland Memorial Hospital in Columbia, where he was taken off life support Sunday.

The man was traveling north on a 1994 Suzuki at about 6:20 p.m. Saturday when he came to a curve but ran off the road, Cpl. Gamble said. Mr. Corley was not wearing a helmet and suffered head injuries.

He was traveling 70 mph in a 40 mph zone, said Deputy Coroner Tim Carlton, who added that a helmet would have boosted Mr. Corley's chances of survival.

Attorney suspended for 6 months

The Georgia Supreme Court suspended Augusta attorney John L. Creson for six months Monday for practicing law during a temporary suspension imposed last year.

In a unanimous opinion released Monday, the justices wrote that they rejected the recommendation of a special master in the case and the State Bar of Georgia that Mr. Creson should face only a public reprimand.

"We are especially concerned with the flagrant manner in which Creson ignored a direct order of this court of which he was unquestionably aware," the justices wrote.

Mr. Creson was notified of the temporary suspension in January 1998 for not responding in a probe of a former client's complaints. Before the suspension was lifted five months later, Mr. Creson practiced law and took a sworn statement in a court case, according to the Supreme Court opinion.

Westinghouse backs program

Raising healthy children and giving them a good education makes good business sense, according to officials for Westinghouse Savannah River Co.

That's why businesses back Gov. Jim Hodges' First Steps program, and why the state House and Senate approved the program just one year after a similar plan failed to make it out of committee, said state Rep. James Smith, D-Columbia, a sponsor of Mr. Hodges' early childhood education bill in the state Legislature.

First Steps would spend $10 million to $20 million on local programs to improve children's health, child care and parent education programs. First Steps is necessary to prepare children for jobs that require more education, Mr. Hodges said.

Business leaders have taken up the cause, seeing a need to educate children to perform in that world. Mr. Hodges appointed business leaders to his First Steps advisory board and corporate donors have contributed to the program, including a $100,000 contribution from Westinghouse -- operator of Savannah River Site.

Business leaders must help provide the educated work force they need, Westinghouse spokesman Jack Herrmann said.

"At least half of our workers are degreed professional people," he said. "If we don't prime the pipeline a little bit, where are we going to get the workers we need?"

Floodlight system to get test

A network of powerful floodlights designed to lure baitfish from Russell Dam's reversible turbines will be tested tonight and early Wednesday to ensure it is operating properly.

The lights are along the Georgia and South Carolina shorelines of the Thurmond Lake headwaters beneath Russell Dam. They are part of efforts by the Army Corps of Engineers to prevent fish from congregating at the turbines.

Russell Dam's reversible turbines pump water from Thurmond Lake back into Lake Russell, where it can be reused to generate more electricity.

The reversible units are not operating commercially while the Corps of Engineers resolves a lawsuit challenging their use. That lack of use makes periodic tests necessary to ensure the system works properly.

"A lot of people associate the lights with pumping, and we wanted people to understand this is just a test," Corps of Engineers spokesman Jim Parker said.

Corps to dedicate new park

NEW HOPE, Ga. -- The Army Corps of Engineers will hold a dedication ceremony at 10 a.m. Thursday at the new Cherokee Day-Use Area on Georgia Highway 47 in Lincoln County.

The park -- under development for years -- includes two large picnic shelters, numerous family-sized picnic sites, swimming beaches, comfort facilities and amenities.

The site has a major boat ramp, expanded in 1997 to five lanes. Additional parking was added last year, bringing the parking capacity to 130 passenger vehicles and 75 boat trailers.

Chemical planning wins award

The Richmond County Local Emergency Planning Committee was honored as second-place recipient of the 1999 Chemical Product Stewardship Community Award.

The committee works with chemical companies, emergency responders, schools, the media and the public to promote safety and effective emergency management policies.

Since its creation four years ago, Richmond County's committee has led efforts to improve shelter-in-place techniques, been host to risk-management programs for major chemical companies and held dozens of educational programs in area schools and neighborhoods.

The emergency committee, one of hundreds nationwide, was selected last fall as one of five finalists for the honor. The award was announced last week during a ceremony in Washington. Virgil Fowler, the committee's chairman, accepted the award.

Boshears Fly-in date scheduled

The annual Boshears Fly-in will be held Sept. 24-26 this year at Augusta's Daniel Field, airport officials said. The airport's board approved the date Monday.

No action taken regarding letter

COLUMBIA -- A video gambling machine operator says he didn't intend to violate a judge's order capping daily payouts at $125 with a letter to customers last week.

U.S. District Judge Joseph Anderson took no action Monday against Spartanburg-based R.L. Jordan Oil Co. The letter told customers they could collect winnings exceeding the cap if state law changed.

Judge Anderson ordered five of the state's largest machine owners and operators being sued by former gambling addicts to obey the state law.

R.L. Jordan Oil Co., which operates Hot Spot convenience stores, stopped distributing the letter last week. Dan Durbin, the company's president, said the letter "reaffirmed our commitment to the law."

The gamblers' lawyers argued that the letters violated Judge Anderson's order.