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UPDATE: Massive south Winnipeg condo fire cracks windows on surrounding homes

WINNIPEG –  A massive fire leveled a three storey apartment complex on Waverley Street at John Angus in South Pointe early Thursday morning. Surrounding homes were evacuated and some were left with cracks on their windows from the intense heat.

“We felt the heat through our window,” Asit Dey said. “It was so scary I almost cried.”

The blaze started around 2:30 a.m. at 2475 Waverley Street. The building was under construction at the time when the fire broke out. Damage is estimated to be around 3.5 million dollars.

Fire crews battled the flames for several hours. Around 50 firefighters were dispatched.

“It started so quickly, because it was all exposed wood,” fire chief Tom Mulvenna said. “There was nothing to stop it. Once it started, it just kept going.”

Mulvenna said it was a tough battle because the flames spread so quickly. “Just think of a fire in the backyard, and think of the whole yard being a bonfire,” Mulvenna said.  “You can’t actually go and fight it you have to stay back and put water on it, so it just takes a while.”

A massive fire leveled a three storey apartment complex on Waverley Street at John Angus in South Pointe early Thursday morning.

Shaun McLeod

A massive fire leveled a three storey apartment complex on Waverley Street at John Angus in South Pointe early Thursday morning.

Shaun McLeod

A massive fire leveled a three storey apartment complex on Waverley Street at John Angus in South Pointe early Thursday morning.

Shaun McLeod

A massive fire leveled a three storey apartment complex on Waverley Street at John Angus in South Pointe early Thursday morning.

Global News

Emergency crews and police closed off traffic in the area for several hours. Residents were able to return to their homes late Thursday morning. There were no injuries, and there is no word on how the blaze started. An investigation is underway.

Seymour Pacific Develpments sent out a news release Thursday afternoon, acknowledging the fire at South Pointe Terrace. “We are thankful for the quick response from the Winnipeg Fire Department,” said Seymour Pacific’s Chief Operating Officer and Executive VP Kris D. Mailman. “Although this is a setback for our completion date we anticipate we will be starting to build on the other two unaffected buildings as soon as the investigation clearance is complete.”

Image courtesy of Shaun McLeod

Shaun McLeod

An aftermath shot of the fire that destroyed a complex.

Josh Arason/ Global News

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©2015

Kerry, Netanyahu demand end to incitement amid wave of Israeli-Palestinian violence

BERLIN – U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry and Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu called Thursday for an immediate end to incitement blamed for a recent deadly wave of Palestinian attacks against Israelis.

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Meeting in Berlin as Kerry waded into the volatile mix of spiraling tensions in a bid to de-escalate the situation, the pair condemned the attacks. Kerry called for an end to all incitement and all violence but Netanyahu pointedly repeated earlier direct accusations that Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas is to blame, saying he is “spreading lies” about Israel and the status of the holy site at the centre of the tensions.

“There is no question this wave of attacks is driven directly by incitement, incitement by Hamas, incitement from the Islamist movement in Israel and incitement, I am sorry to say, from President Abbas and the Palestinian Authority,” Netanyahu said. “I think it is time for the international community to say clearly to President Abbas to stop spreading lies about Israel. Lies that Israel wants to change the status quo at the Temple Mount, lies that Israel wants to tear down the Al-Aqsa Mosque, lies that Israel is executing Palestinians. All of that is false.”

He said Israel is committed to keeping the status quo at the site, which is known to Jews as the Temple Mount, the holiest site in Judaism and home to the biblical Temples. For Muslims, it is the Noble Sanctuary, home to the Al-Aqsa Mosque, the third-holiest site in Islam and a key national symbol for the Palestinians. The site, captured by Israel from Jordan in the 1967 Mideast war, is a frequent flashpoint of violence.

The Palestinians accuse Israel of trying to change the longstanding “status quo” at the site, which allows Jews to visit but not to pray. They point to a growing number of Jewish visitors who seek an expanded Jewish presence and prayer rights at the site.

Netanyahu rejected those claims and said ending incitement was the only way to ease tensions.

“To generate hope, we have to stop the terrorism,” he said. “To stop the terrorism, we have to stop the incitement and I think it’s time the international community told Pres Abbas to stop the incitement and hold him accountable for his words and his deeds.”

Kerry was more circumspect and did not single out Abbas for blame.

“We have to stop the incitement, we have to stop the violence,” he said, adding that he had spoken to Abbas and Jordan’s King Abdullah, who is charged with overseeing the Jerusalem site, in the past day and both assured them of their commitment to calm.

“I believe people want this to de-escalate,” he said of Abbas and Abdullah, whom he will meet on Saturday in Amman.

Kerry added that these conversations would be “very important to settle on the steps that can be taken beyond the condemnation and beyond the rhetoric” to end the violence.

Kerry has said he wants clarity about the status quo about the site, but officials say he doesn’t believe that needs to be in writing.

With only a general outline of goals in these discussions, Kerry arrived here intending to listen as much as talk, as he steers attempts to restore relative calm in Israel and the Palestinian territories.

After Kerry meets Netanyahu he will see German Foreign Minister Frank-Walter Steinmeier and European Union foreign policy chief Federica Mogherini, and then travel to Vienna, where he will meet the foreign ministers of Russia, Turkey and Saudi Arabia about Syria on Friday. He will then visit Amman, where he will see Abdullah in addition to his talks with Abbas. He plans to wrap up the trip in Saudi Arabia.

Complicating his already delicate tasks, the situations in both hotspots have taken recent unexpected and potentially dangerous turns. Netanyahu blamed a former Palestinian leader for inspiring Hitler’s Holocaust and new Palestinian stabbing attacks on Israelis have threatened to further inflame the combustible atmosphere.

U.S. officials have yet to detail any American plan to end the Israeli-Palestinian unrest that erupted a month ago over Jerusalem’s most sensitive holy site. During that time, 10 Israelis have been killed by Palestinian assailants, mostly in knife attacks, while 47 Palestinians – including 26 labeled by Israel as attackers – have been killed by Israeli fire. The remainder died in clashes between Israeli forces and Palestinian protesters. In addition, an Israeli mob killed an Eritrean migrant after mistaking him for an Arab attacker.

More changes to Parliament Hill security may be coming: senior Mountie

OTTAWA – A year after a rampaging gunman stormed the Centre Block, the RCMP and federal officials are still studying ways to make Parliament Hill more secure, says a senior Mountie.

While it’s still early, the process could lead to new, highly visible security measures on the Hill, said RCMP Assistant Commissioner Gilles Michaud.

“We want to make sure that we address all potential threats,” Michaud said in an interview.

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Related

  • Union leader unsure of plan to put RCMP in charge of Parliament Hill security

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  • Parliament Hill security needs to be evaluated: RCMP commissioner

One year ago today, Michael Zehaf Bibeau fatally shot honour guard Cpl. Nathan Cirillo at the National War Memorial before rushing into Parliament Hill’s Hall of Honour, where he was killed in a hail of bullets.

READ MORE: War Memorial ceremony Thursday to honour Nathan Cirillo, Patrice Vincent

The RCMP was responsible for the grounds of the parliamentary precinct, while House of Commons and Senate security forces had jurisdiction inside the Parliament Buildings.

A now-merged parliamentary protective service manages day-to-day security on Parliament Hill, a direct consequence of Oct. 22 intended to eliminate possible confusion.

VIDEO: New Parliament Hill security measures to go into effect

But Defence Research and Development Canada is quietly working away at two studies that could further transform security on the Hill and for about three dozen other buildings in the parliamentary precinct.

One report, to be done by the end of the year, is looking at officer training, exercises and co-ordinating procedures of the newly merged security forces. The other, to be completed by April, is examining possible investments in new security facilities and equipment or other kinds of measures.

READ MORE: Reservist inequality persists months after Ottawa promised action

“I’m sure that they’re looking at some aspect of how we can better screen people before they come on to the Hill,” Michaud said. “Because we’re doing screening of vehicles, but what about people? Is there a way that that can be done without limiting their access?”

He cautioned that wouldn’t necessarily mean setting up guard booths just inside the Hill gates, noting screening could be accomplished through other tools, such as security cameras – which are already being used to some extent.

“There are different ways of doing it,” Michaud said.

Ultimately, options will be presented to the speakers of the House of Commons and Senate, who retain overall responsibility for Hill security, to see “what they’re willing to live with,” he added.

READ MORE: Reservists like Nathan Cirillo are worth $1.8M less to the feds. Why?

The goal is to balance security needs with access to a place Canadians and tourists love to visit.

“And we need to respect that,” Michaud said. “Are there ways that we can still respect that fundamental privilege that exists, while ensuring that those that do visit feel safe, and are safe?

“That’s a bit of a juggling act there, and that’s what we’re trying to make sure that we get right.”

Michael J. Fox torn over Cubs prediction in ‘Back to the Future II’

NEW YORK – While some of the predictions made in “Back to the Future II” eventually came true like, Skype and fingerprint scanners, one of them did not: The Chicago Cubs winning the World Series.

At a special screening for the film Wednesday, star Michael J. Fox admitted on the red carpet that he was a little torn over that one.

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“It’s tough because I’m a New Yorker and I would love to see the Mets do well. But I’d love the see the film be right. So I’m torn,” Fox said before the game ended, adding “Whatever happens, happens.”

Christopher Lloyd who played Doc Brown said he didn’t really follow the predictions, except for that one.

“I’m hoping the Cubs win tonight and go into the series, that would be the ultimate prediction,” Lloyd said with a bit of trepidation.

But that was not to be.

The New York Mets defeated the Cubs 8-3 Wednesday in the National League Championship series. They will advance to the World Series.

WATCH: What ‘Back to the Future’ got wrong, right and sort of right

“Back to the Future Part II” envisioned more than baseball. It depicted a colorful 2015 with flying cars, hoverboards and self-tying shoelaces. While those doodads are hardly prevalent today, the film did accurately tease the rise of flat-screen televisions, biometric scanning and hands-free gaming.

According to writer and co-creator Bob Gale, most of the predictions, including the one about the Cubs “were intended to be jokes.”

“The most far-fetched prediction was that lawyers would be abolished in the future. We didn’t expect that would happen, but you put stuff in the movie you’re going to enjoy,” joked Gale.

“Back to the Future” Day was celebrated around the country on Wednesday. It marked the day in 1985 that Marty McFly, along with Emmett “Doc” Brown and Jennifer Parker travelled in their souped-up DeLorean time machine to 2015 in the sci-fi film trilogy’s second installment in 1989.

“Back to the Future” filmmaker Robert Zemeckis’ trilogy has left a lasting impression on pop culture in the 30 years since the original film debuted, spawning a theme park attraction, video game and animated series.

The town of Reston, Virginia ceremoniously changed its name to Hill Valley, McFly’s fictional hometown. Washington, D.C.’s Washington West Film Festival featured a marathon screening of the trilogy and will have a Sunday screening of the original film. Stars Christopher Lloyd and Claudia Wells, as well as screenwriter-producer Bob Gale will attend.

Other celebrations in California included a tour of the Hill Valley town square on the Universal Studios lot, an “Enchantment Under the Sea” dance at the Hollywood United Methodist Church and a screening in the parking lot of the Puente Hills Mall, where McFly famously blasted off in the DeLorean. There also was the Million McFly March, a gathering of fans dressed as McFly that began at the Burbank, California, location of the Burger King restaurant depicted in “Back to the Future.”

For those who didn’t want to leave home, the trilogy was streamed on Amazon Prime. Universal also is releasing a special edition trilogy box set in light-up packaging resembling Doc Brown’s flux capacitor.

©2015Associated Press

Mayors Iveson and Nenshi discuss city issues at Edmonton lecture

EDMONTON – Fresh off a federal election that saw the country’s leadership shift from blue to red, the mayors of Alberta’s two largest cities took the stage at the University of Alberta to discuss their vision for the future of Canadian cities.

Calgary Mayor Naheed Nenshi and Edmonton Mayor Don Iveson spoke in front of a packed auditorium of about 680 people Wednesday night at the University of Alberta’s annual Hurtig Lecture.

Their message? The need for attention to be paid to growing Canadian cities.

“Despite our national stories and myths involving mountains and rivers and moose, maple trees that don’t grow in most of the country, beavers, Canada is actually one of the most urbanized countries in the world,” said Nenshi, who anticipates by 2050, 86 per cent of the developed world will live in cities.

Both Iveson and Nenshi highlighted the need for more affordable housing, public transportation investment, infrastructure development and thinking about cities in a global context. They both plan to hold the new government accountable for its promises.

“Let’s just put it this way, if you visit my website at citiesmatter长沙夜网, you will see that our new prime minister-designate designate has made a number of very large promises,” said Nenshi. “Don and I have that printed out and we’re going to spend a lot of time making sure that they live up to those promises.”

“Local governments have the social licence, they have the trust of the people. Not all the time. Not every bridge goes up perfect, not every LRT line turns on on time,” Iveson said, getting a chuckle from the crowd.

READ MORE: Mayor Don Iveson confident election results bode well for Edmonton

Amarjeet Sohi, who won the Edmonton Mill Woods seat for the Liberal Party, was also in the crowd. He said he’s excited about what the next four years will bring.

“The things that we’re proposing to do are immediate, such as investment into public transportation, affordable housing, or giving a seven per cent tax reduction to middle class families which will actually help with some of the challenges,” he said.

Iveson pointed out that municipalities often have to do more with less.

“We have eight cents of your dollar. Sometimes six. Fifteen if you count all of the transfers or ways in which other orders of government fund back to municipalities,” he said. “But in terms of the tax dollars, what we actually collect is between six and eight cents across the country, so Canadians are overestimating by a factor of three or four how much money our local governments have and they still think we’re the most responsible with it?

“They think we have four times the resources we have to deliver the services and the infrastructure that we do, and they think we’re the most efficient at it. So give us the other 20 cents and then see what we can do.”

The environment was also on the mayors’ radar, with Iveson voicing his high hopes for the forthcoming climate change conference in Paris.

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Related

  • Federal Election 2015: Alberta remains a Conservative stronghold

  • Federal election results a victory for positive campaigns: Notley

    Federal Election 2015: Liberals make inroads in conservative stronghold Calgary

©2015

Connor McDavid scores as Oilers win third straight with victory over Red Wings

EDMONTON – One week has made a major difference on the outlook of the Edmonton Oilers.

Connor McDavid and Teddy Purcell scored in the second period as the Oilers won their third straight with a 3-1 victory over the Detroit Red Wings on Wednesday night.

Mark Letestu opened the scoring for the Oilers (3-4-0) in the first while Nail Yakupov added a pair of assists. Edmonton snapped an eight-game losing streak against Detroit with the win.

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“It was a good win,” said Oilers head coach Todd McLellan. “It is one that we will bank and be proud of, but there are still areas of our game where we have to get better. We’re going to be saying that in February. We need to keep plugging away.”

Edmonton’s streak includes wins over Detroit, the Calgary Flames and the Vancouver Canucks — teams they lost all 12 combined games to last season.

“Game by game we are getting better as a team,” said Oilers goaltender Cam Talbot, who made 28 saves. “To come up with some timely goals and Anders (Nilsson) and I have been able to come up with some big saves, it is all coming together pretty quick here like we were hoping. Hopefully we can keep it going.”

Tomas Tatar found the back of the net for Detroit (3-3-0), which lost its third in a row.

“It was better than the last game, I think we battled harder and won some more battles,” said Red Wings forward Henrik Zetterberg. “We created a little more offence. Obviously those two quick goals hurt us. They’re pretty deadly when they get the chances.”

“We had two huge blowups and you can’t win with big blowups,” added Detroit head coach Jeff Blashill.

Edmonton went up 2-0 at 6:34 of the second period as Benoit Pouliot sent McDavid in on a breakaway and he beat Mrazek with a highlight-reel deke to score his fourth goal of the season.

The Oilers extended the lead just 30 seconds later as the rebound from a Purcell shot went off Detroit defenceman Kyle Quincey and into the Red Wings net.

Letestu helped the Oilers get on the board with a power-play goal at 12:32 of the first period. Yakupov made a perfect feed in front of the net and Letestu was able to direct the puck past Red Wings goaltender Petr Mrazek. It was Letestu’s first goal in an Edmonton uniform.

The Oilers had 11 first period shots to Detroit’s five on Talbot, who made a couple of huge glove saves on a late Red Wings power play.

Detroit cut into the lead seven minutes into the third as Tatar scored on a backhand shot off a rebound.

Both teams return to action on Friday as the Oilers play the second game of a three-game homestand against the Washington Capitals. The Red Wings travel to Calgary to face the Flames.

©2015

Family raises questions about MCFD probe into teen’s death

Fifteen-year-old Nick Lang was found dead in a closet with a shoelace around his neck just six days after being placed in the care of the Ministry of Children and Family Development, says his father.

It was supposed to be temporary as the teen was getting help for a methamphetamine addiction. The ministry announced an independent review, but Global News has learned that review is being conducted by a former MCFD employee.

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“The man that did the review was definitely a nice man but once that report leaves his hands, who knows what’s going to happen to it?” said father Peter Lang.

“Our concern is when it’s a former employee, they may be pressured to change their report in order to make them look better and perhaps make the parents look worse.”

The former government worker contracted out by the ministry is Stephen Howell, who now works as an instructor in the Criminal Justice Department at Victoria’s Camosun College. According to a freedom of information request, a person with the same name was awarded a $9,000 contract to do a “case review” on June 17, 2015, eight days after Lang died.

READ MORE: ‘I’m just telling Nick’s story’: Grieving father responds to letter from MCFD

In an email, Howell said he is “unable to comment on this matter. Please direct your questions to MCFD.”

“The family doesn’t believe they’re going to get justice in this case,” said B.C. NDP leader John Horgan. “The ministry should respond accordingly and find someone that is arm’s length from the government.”

A spokesperson said Minister Stephanie Cadieux was busy, so she couldn’t comment on camera. The only question the government would answer is that Howell was contracted to do an “external review.”

Lang’s father still has no idea when he’ll receive that report.

“We’ve always maintained from the beginning there needs to be a public inquiry, not just into my son’s death, but also into other children that have died in care. There seems to be an epidemic in this province.”

-With files from Rumina Daya

©2015

Alberta Premier Rachel Notley shakes up cabinet, creates new ministry

EDMONTON – Alberta Premier Rachel Notley shuffled her cabinet on Thursday morning, and signalled her government wants to focus on economic diversification and job growth by creating a new ministry.

Scroll down for a full list

One cabinet member switched ministries, another had their responsibilities adjusted and a third MLA was called up from the backbenches.

Danielle Larivee, MLA for Lesser Slave Lake, was sworn in as minister of municipal affairs and the minister of service Alberta on Thursday morning.

WATCH: MLA Danielle Larivee talks about Alberta cabinet appointment

Larivee took over the portfolio from MLA Deron Bilous, who was moved to the newly-created economic development and trade ministry. Bilous represents Edmonton-Beverly-Clareview.

WATCH: Alberta MLA Deron Bilous talks about new portfolio

MLA Lori Sigurdson’s role changed on Thursday. She had been the minister of innovation and advanced education. While she remains in charge of the advanced education ministry, the innovation file has been moved to Bilous’ new economic development portfolio. Sigurdson also continues to head the ministry of jobs, skills, training and labour.

In a news conference, Notley said the cabinet changes were aimed at job creators and business innovators.

The province said the new economic development and trade ministry will bring under one umbrella work that is currently spread between several departments.

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Related

  • ‘Today we open up a new chapter in the story of Alberta’: Premier Rachel Notley

  • Alberta goes from blue to orange in the 2015 provincial election

  • Orange crush: NDP stomps out 44-year PC dynasty, Jim Prentice resigns

Notley and 11 cabinet ministers were sworn in on the steps of the Alberta Legislature on May 24, 19 days after the NDP ended 44 years of PC reign in Alberta by winning a majority in the May 5 election. Thursday’s mini-shuffle expands Notley’s cabinet by one.

READ MORE: Who is in Alberta Premier Rachel Notley’s cabinet?

The new session of the legislature resumes Monday. The NDP will table its first budget Tuesday.

On Wednesday, the finance minister announced the budget would not be balanced until the 2019-2020 fiscal year, one year later than Notley promised during the election.

WATCH: Premier Rachel Notley is expected to announce changes to her cabinet on Thursday morning. Jenna Freeman reports.

A list of the cabinet in order of precedence:

Rachel Notley: Premier, president of executive council
Brian Mason: Government house leader, minister of infrastructure, minister of transportation
David Eggen: Education; culture and tourism
Deron Bilous: Economic development and trade; deputy government house leader
Joe Ceci: President of treasury board; finance
Marg McCuaig-Boyd: Energy
Sarah Hoffman: Health and seniors
Kathleen Ganley: Justice and solicitor general; aboriginal relations
Lori Sigurdson: Advanced education; jobs, skills, training and labour
Oneil Carlier: Agriculture and forestry
Shannon Phillips: Environment and parks; responsible for status of women; deputy government house leader
Irfan Sabir: Human services
Danielle Larivee: Municipal affairs; Service Alberta

With files from

©2015

Murphy homers again, Mets sweep Cubs to reach World Series

CHICAGO – One final, charmed swing by Daniel Murphy, and the New York Mets finished a playoff sweep of the Chicago Cubs.

A new generation of Amazins is heading to the World Series.

Murphy homered for a record sixth consecutive post-season game, and the Mets brushed aside the Cubs 8-3 Wednesday night, capping a National League Championship Series in which New York never trailed.

“I can’t explain it. It’s such a blessing to contribute to what we’ve been able to do,” he said.

Lucas Duda hit a three-run homer in the first inning and a two-run double in the second at Wrigley Field, silencing a crowd of 42,227 desperately hoping for the beginning of an epic comeback in Game 4.

WATCH: Joe Maddon says he’s happy Terry Collins headed to World Series

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READ MORE: Blue Jays crown Royals, stave off elimination

Not this time. Not with New York’s array of power arms, and Murphy swinging a hot stick that made him the NLCS MVP.

Manager Terry Collins’ team advanced to the World Series for the first time since the Mets lost to the crosstown Yankees in five games in 2000. They will play at either Toronto or Kansas City in Game 1 on Tuesday night – the Royals lead 3-2 in the ALCS.

But the first big question for New York is the health of centre fielder Yoenis Cespedes, who left in the second inning with soreness in his left shoulder. Any health issue for the slugger could be a big factor in the next round.

The Cubs, meanwhile, still haven’t won the crown since 1908. Manager Joe Maddon’s wild-card bunch surged into this series, but was overmatched.

“They didn’t give us – they did not let us up for air at any point,” Maddon said. “Their domination of the early part of the game and their pitching was impressive.”

When Dexter Fowler looked at a called third strike for the final out, Jeurys Familia dropped to his knees in front of the mound and then hopped up for a hug from catcher Travis d’Arnaud. They were soon joined by the rest of their jubilant teammates in the infield grass.

WATCH: Jays stay alive

A small, but vocal group of New York fans behind the visiting dugout then chanted “Let’s go, Mets! Let’s go, Mets!” Long after the team had moved its celebration to the cramped visiting clubhouse at Wrigley, the fans continued with chants of “Four more wins! Four more wins!”

By wrapping it up fast, the Mets can now set up their imposing rotation how they want for the World Series. Jacob deGrom, Matt Harvey and Noah Syndergaard will all be on full rest, and then some.

Right when it looked as if his historic streak was coming to an end, Murphy connected for a two-run drive to centre against Fernando Rodney in the eighth inning. The second baseman raised his right arm as he rounded first after his seventh homer of the playoffs – the string includes a shot in the deciding Game 5 of the Division Series at Dodger Stadium last week.

Murphy, who was tied with Carlos Beltran for the post-season homer streak, finished with four hits and batted .529 (9 for 17) in the series.

Duda doubled twice and d’Arnaud also homered as the Mets won their fifth pennant. Bartolo Colon pitched 1 1-3 scoreless innings for his first playoff win since 2001, for Cleveland at Seattle. The 14 years, 12 days between postseason victories for the 42-year-old right-hander snapped the major league record of exactly 14 years for Milt Wilcox, according to STATS.

Colon, who made 31 starts this season, replaced rookie Steven Matz with two out in the fifth and runners on first and second. He struck out Kris Bryant swinging on a 3-2 pitch, preserving New York’s 6-1 lead.

Bryant hit a two-run homer in the eighth, but it was way too late for Chicago in its first appearance in the NLCS in 12 years. The Cubs shut out Pittsburgh in the wild-card game and eliminated rival St. Louis in the division series, but were unable to mount much of a challenge against the Mets’ talented pitching staff.

The Cubs also loaded the bases with no outs in the fourth, and only came away with one run on Kyle Schwarber’s grounder to first. Starlin Castro lined right to third baseman David Wright on a hard smash for the first out.

While the Mets’ pitching dominated much of the series, it was clear the Cubs were in trouble after aces Jon Lester and Jake Arrieta dropped the first two games in New York. Kyle Hendricks lasted just four innings on Tuesday night, and Jason Hammel was even worse in Game 4.

With two out and a runner on in the first, Hammel walked Yoenis Cespedes before Duda hit a long drive to centre for his first playoff homer. D’Arnaud followed with a shot to right for the Mets’ second set of consecutive homers in playoff history, joining Darryl Strawberry and Kevin McReynolds in Game 4 of the 1988 NLCS against Los Angeles.

Hammel was replaced by Travis Wood after a one-out walk in the second, and Duda drove home two more runs with a double into the gap in right-centre. Duda was just 3 for 24 in the playoffs coming into the night.

HOMER HAPPY

The Mets have hit a franchise-record 14 homers in the playoffs. The previous team mark was 12 in 1969, the Amazin’ Mets won the World Series.

NLCS WOES

The Cubs dropped to 6-15 in the NLCS for the lowest winning percentage for a major league team in the league championship series.

©2015

New detection system aims to reduce roadkill on B.C. highways

A stretch of Highway 3 is said to be one of the most dangerous roadways in B.C. Collisions between vehicles and wildlife happen so often just about everyone in the town of Sparwood has a story.

That’s one of the reasons the highway is part of a new pilot project that aims to reduce roadkill.

Ministry of Transportation statistics say 5,500 carcasses are pulled off of B.C. roads each year. ICBC says about 10,000 collisions involving animals are reported each year, but experts believe the actual number of animals fatalities is much higher.

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Gayle Hesse of the Wildlife Collision Prevention Program says those statistics fail to include “over 18,000 animals that are hit and killed by vehicles, but who move away from the road.”

“Those numbers need be added into the official total. That comes to over 24,300 that are killed on B.C. highways every year.”

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure plans to install a new detection system in two locations on Highway 3–one east of Sparwood and another east of Elko–in an effort to reduce roadkill. The sensors will spot large animals near the highway and trigger a warning to drivers to slow down.

“This initial pilot program carries a cost of about $2.5 million,” said Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone. “The technology is not inexpensive, but it is in use in other parts of the world and where it is in use we have seen a direct correlation between the use of this technology and a subsequent reduction in the number of collisions.”

The system will be up and running this fall. If it works it will be added to high-risk stretches of highway across the province. When used in conjunction with animal corridors and fencing, it could save millions of dollars in insurance claims and save lives in the process.

-With files from Aaron McArthur

©2015