Watercooler Stories

June 12, 2012 at 6:30 AM
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Runaway train makes it 2 1/2 miles

RAJGIR, India, June 12 (UPI) -- Indian transportation officials said two train drivers and supervisors were suspended after a train traveled about 2 1/2 miles without a driver.

Officials said the Shramjeevi Express from Delhi was in the parking bay in Rajgir, in central Bihar, Saturday evening when it began moving on the tracks due to a technical mistake by the driver, who turned off the engine and brought down its systems, NDTV reported Monday.

The officials said the train was moving slowly, but managed to travel about 2 1/2 miles before its pursuers were able to climb into the driver's cabin and pull the brake.

Priest offers $625 in wedding assistance

VOLANIA, Italy, June 12 (UPI) -- An Italian priest is offering $625 in assistance to couples who want to get married but have difficulty affording a ceremony.

The Rev. Giancarlo Pirini of Volania said he was inspired by the dropping number of weddings each year and the half-empty pages of his church's registry, which dates back to 1955, ANSA reported Monday.

"I imagine that many young people today want to marry, but hesitate because of financial difficulties," the Italian news agency quoted Pirini as saying. "I got the idea from another parish some years ago that was offering incentives for baptisms."

Cafeteria workers win old food dispute

SHARPSVILLE, Pa., June 12 (UPI) -- A union representing cafeteria workers in a Pennsylvania school district won a victory in a dispute over being forced to pay for unsellable items they eat.

The American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees filed the grievance in 2011 against the Sharpsville Area School District, alleging officials "violated established past practice" by forcing cafeteria workers to pay for food or drinks that safe food regulations do not allow them to sell to students, The (Sharon) Herald reported Monday.

The settlement, passed by a unanimous school board vote May 21, states workers can consume the items -- which include expired and reheated food and drink items -- for free.

The workers do so, however, at their own risk.

Couple taken to court over no-permit pool

WEST LINN, Ore., June 12 (UPI) -- An Oregon couple who installed an unauthorized pool in their back yard are facing a $2,000-per-day fine retroactive to November 2009.

Troy and Gina Bundy of West Linn, who have been fighting in court for two years to keep their backyard pool, said the local police department issued them the citations this month and the fines are retroactive to November 2009, when construction on the pool was completed, The (Portland) Oregonian reported Monday.

The Bundys pleaded not guilty Wednesday to prohibited use of a water resource area. The trial is set for August.

Troy Bundy said he did not obtain a permit to build the pool in a protected wetland area because then-Mayor Patti Galle told him the permit was a formality that could be taken care of later. However, Galle denies making the comments to Bundy.

City officials said they want the couple to remove the pool and restore a wetland behind their home.

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