West of 495

By - 2/7/16 - 1:12 pm
Long lines at Wachussett Mountain

Dave reports:

Tough day at Wachusett. Summit lift down after car acc caused power surge & fried elec. in lift

By - 1/6/16 - 7:45 am

Or as Shuchi M puts it:

Woot, they cancelled two trains, brought a smaller train than usual, and made the express a local. Where did the fare hike money go MBTA?

By - 1/4/16 - 2:00 pm

The Supreme Judicial Court ruled today the state can keep children away from a would-be foster couple who believe corporal punishment is part of their religious duty - even if they agree to limit the spanking to their natural children and not spank any foster children.

Gregory and Melanie Magazu of Fitchburg, who have two children of their own, sought to become foster and "pre-adoptive" parents in 2012, but were denied permission by the state Department of Children and Families because they said their Christian beliefs sometimes compelled them to spank their own children. Read more.

By - 1/4/16 - 8:56 am
Crowded Fitchburg Line train

Riders aren't supposed to ride in the spaces between cars on commuter rail, but, eh, whadaya gonna do, right, Fitchburg Line riders? Finn, who was among those lucky riders around 7 a.m., reports a conductor's reassuring words:

If you're in there, make sure you hold on.

By - 11/30/15 - 10:53 pm
Machine gun allegedly stolen from Worcester armory

Feds say this photo was taken from suspect's phone; shows stolen weapons in her home.

Ashley Bigsbee, 26, was charged with possession of one of the machine guns stolen from a Worcester armory last month after investigators found photos on her phone of the weapon in her Page Street home - and after the man charged with the burglary implicated her - according to federal officials. Read more.

By - 11/30/15 - 3:34 pm

Up to $15,000 for information that leads to the recovery of those remaining six guns stolen from that armory in Worcester. Click the link for a photo of one of the guns and its "U.S." etchings:

The FBI continues to devote significant resources to locate and recover these firearms and remove them from the possession of the unauthorized individual(s) who may have them. All local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies were quickly made aware of the theft and are assisting the FBI as warranted.

By - 10/14/15 - 11:35 am

State officials recently gathered to celebrate the spring, 2016 start of "bullet train" service that will get some Worcester commuters into Back Bay in an hour - which is still a couple minutes slower than the Beeliner service introduced by the Boston and Albany on May 1, 1950 (using Buddliners, no less).

H/t Ari Ofsevit.

By - 8/31/15 - 8:47 pm

The Telegram reports how a porcupine that quilled the snout of that water buffalo got it so enraged it broke free of its enclosure in a giant water buffalo-y rage.

By - 8/30/15 - 1:42 pm
Water buffalo in custody

UPDATE: As you can see in the photo from Westminster Police, Bear the water buffalo is back in custody, none the worse for wear, save for some porcupine quills in his nose.

Westminster Police report Wa-wa-Chusett Mountain's water buffalo has busted loose and is roaming the countryside. Yes, of course, Wachusett Mountain has a water buffalo. Or had.

We ask that you don't approach it or try to capture it in any way.

By - 8/17/15 - 2:04 pm

Keolis is advising that with temperatures forecast in the 80s and 90s this week, the Worcester Line will be taking it easy - extending commutes by up to 30 minutes. Read more.

By - 8/15/15 - 11:42 am
Land shark on a Massachusetts highway

State Police report a trooper dispatched to investigate a report of metal debris on I-190 didn't find any metal, but: Read more.

By - 8/3/15 - 10:50 am

The Supreme Judicial Court ruled today a pitcher for Milford High School injured in a badly designed bullpen at a Hudson baseball field can sue Hudson for damages.

Hudson had argued that because the game between Milford and Hudson was in a town park, it was protected from legal action by a state law that limits liability in spaces open to the public at no charge. A lower-court judge agreed and summarily dismissed the lawsuit by the pitcher, who, on warming up, struck his knee on a timber in the narrow bullpen, causing an injury that required two operations to fix. Read more.

By - 7/15/15 - 12:10 pm

The Library of the Royal Irish Academy wants to identify the people in the photograph below. Please contact the Library if you recognize any of the subjects. The Library can be reached via Twitter @Library_RIA, or by email at www.ria.ie/library/contact, citing "8 May Photo Query Tweet."

If more information regarding the location, subjects, time, et cetera, of the photograph become available, I will update this post.

By - 5/28/15 - 11:07 am

Yaduveer Krishnadatta Chamaraja Wadiyar, a recent graduate of UMass Amherst - he studied English and economics - was coronated maharajah of Mysore today, giving him domain over some 1,500 acres in southern India.

By - 4/9/15 - 6:57 pm

The Worcester Police Department reports it has charged one of its officers with assault and battery for an incident Dec. 1 involving a man awaiting a court appearance:

The complainant and witness alleged that during the prisoner release process, the officer made a disparaging remark with respect to the complainant’s “black” skin.

By - 1/20/15 - 10:28 am

MassLive reports a group of legislators from the western part of the state want MassDOT to study the idea of a high-speed rail link from Boston to Springfield.

Via Adam Castiglioni.

By - 1/19/15 - 9:46 pm

Today, in addition to celebrating Martin Luther King Jr. Day, the states of Alabama, Arkansas and Mississippi celebrate Robert E Lee Day. He is "best known for commanding the Confederate Army of Northern Virginia in the American Civil War from 1862 until his surrender in 1865.."

The Confederate States of America was a secessionist state existing from 1861–65. It was originally formed by seven slave states in the Lower South region of the United States.

By - 1/3/15 - 5:47 pm
Stuck truck in Westboro

The Westboro Fire Department reminds us Storrowing's not just a game Bostonians can play.

H/t Rick.

By - 12/2/14 - 11:11 am

The Massachusetts Appeals Court ruled today a man cannot be charged with selling marijuana within 100 feet of a "public park or playground" because the playground in question was on privately owned land.

The ruling means that Christopher Gopaul will now only face 13 drug charges instead of 14 when he comes to trial for allegedly selling pot to an undercover cop at the the Windsor Meadows Apartment Complex in Marlborough in 2011.

Prosecutors had argued that word "public" in the phrase applied only to the word "park," and so it shouldn't matter if the playground was on private land or not, but the court disagreed: