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MINNESOTA NEWS BRIEFS: Truck driver killed in train accident in Redwood County

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news Ellsworth, 54011
Ellsworth Wisconsin 126 S. Chestnut St. 54011

SANBORN, Minn.  -- A truck driver is dead after his rig was hit by a train in Redwood County Monday afternoon.

Sheriff's officials say 70-year-old Richard Utz of rural Comfrey was crossing the tracks northeast of Sanborn when his semi was struck by a Canadian Pacific train. Utz was airlifted to a Twin Cities hospital where he was pronounced dead. No other injuries were reported.

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The driver of a Jefferson Lines bus -- a Minnesota man -- will be charged in connection with a crash on I-94 near Valley City, North Dakota yesterday (Mon). State Patrol Captain Brian Niewind says 46-year-old Stephen Arthur of Duluth will be cited for not paying attention while driving and causing a crash. Arthur told investigators he tried to slow down on an exit ramp but the brakes didn't work. But Captain Niewind says an extensive inspection found no mechanical problems. The bus struck an embankment and five passengers suffered minor injuries. All have been treated and released.

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Police in Saint Peter do not suspect foul play in the death of a local woman whose body was found last Friday. The medical examiner identified the victim as 26-year-old Karissa Feldman. An autopsy has been performed and athorities are awaiting laboratory results to determine the cause and manner of death. The preliminary investigation at the scene indicated no trauma.

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Gas prices are going up again in Minnesota. Triple-A Minnesota's Gail Weinholzer says there's been about a 21-cent increase at the pump over the last week, with the statewide average now $3.61 a gallon. Weinholzer says high crude oil prices are to blame. She says gas prices will likely rise another dime in Minnesota, but does not expect record-high prices we were paying in late May.

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Farm workers from across the nation, including Minnesota, are meeting with members of Congress today asking for stronger protections from hazardous pesticides. Ernesto Velez with Centro Campesino of Owatonna says the workers face the greatest threat from these chemicals and there are 10,000 to 20,000 cases of acute pesticide poisoning each year across the country. Velez says nearly 35-million pounds of pesticides are applied to crops in Minnesota each year.

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With the focus of the baseball world squarely on tonight's Major League Baseball All-Star Game in New York, there's a select group of people more interested in next year's Midsummer Classic. Target Field will host the baseball extravaganza next July, and Twins president Dave Saint Peter has taken some of his staff to New York this week to help them see what they're getting ready for. Saint Peter says it's a little bit of an apples-to-oranges comparison going from New York to the Twin Cities, but so many of the elements are fundamental. He adds there are a lot of things to get ready for besides the actual game. The Twins last hosted an All-Star Game in 1985 at the Metrodome.

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A Minnesota man is facing multiple charges after he was caught using his brother's fishing license on the St. Louis River near Knife Falls Dam in Cloquet. DNR officials say 30-year-old Andrew Swenson of Cloquet had difficulty answering questions about the date of birth, height, weight and address listed on the fishing license. Swenson wasn't able to obtain a fishing license because he had been cited in the past for fishing with extra lines. He was arrested on a warrant for failing to pay that fine. DNR officials say Swenson's brother was charged with lending, borrowing or transferring a license. He pleaded guilty and paid the fine.

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