Bridge problem: A Kiski Township couple lost their home in a fire Saturday because firefighters couldn't get to the scene fast enough. The Bell Township fire engines were just a mile away on the other side of the Kiski River. But they couldn't use the Salina Bridge because of a 10-ton weight limit. They had to take a detour that was longer. Kiski fire Chief Rich Frain said the outcome would have been different if the engines from Bell weren't delayed by the bridge detour. The Kiski department is about 6 miles away, and getting there took twice as long. PennDOT is planning to upgrade or replace the bridge — but not before 2021. It should be done sooner to avoid another avoidable delay in getting to a fire. This is a matter of public safety.
Dangerous water: Colfax Upper Elementary School in Springdale is the latest school in the region to report lead in its water. The school district tested 12 fixtures and found unacceptable levels in water from a classroom sink. No details were provided on the levels detected. That's something that shouldn't be a secret. The district owes parents total transparency. But this story has somewhat of a silver lining. The district provides bottled water to students at the school anyway because the tap water is often brown. Lead, brown water? Both are a problem.