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FAA probe requested of pilot rest rules

The Federal Aviation Administration should investigate pilot fatigue and update rules governing pilot on-duty and rest periods, Rep. Thomas M. Reynolds, R-Clarence, said.

Reynolds said he is troubled by a National Transportation Safety Board report that cited pilot fatigue as a contributing factor to an October 2004 plane crash in Missouri that killed Dr. Richard T. Sarkin, an Amherst pediatrician, and 12 others.

"The Sarkin family has needlessly suffered because of outdated rules and regulations," Reynolds said.

In a letter to FAA Administrator Marion C. Blakely, Reynolds said the agency's pilot duty regulations "do not reflect recent research on pilot fatigue and sleep issues, increasing the possibility that pilots will fly in a fatigued condition."


Albion man arrested on child pornography charge

A 46-year-old Albion man has been arrested on a felony pornography charge after being accused of possessing a computer disc showing lewd photos of a young girl, authorities said.

Allen Dise, a manager in the graphics department of The Buffalo News, was arrested at his Albion home Saturday night and charged with possessing an obscene sexual performance by a child.

The Erie County district attorney's office and State Police at Boston said the computer disc contained between 15 and 20 photos of a young girl, who appeared to be under 10 years old.

Following Dise's arrest, he was fired from his job at The News.

Law enforcement officials said the case began late last week, when Dise gave a disc to a co-worker, thinking it was a blank disc. The co-worker saw the photographs and contacted an editor, who reported the incident to authorities.

"Once we were alerted to the event, we brought the State Police in and they began their investigation, which culminated in going to the subject's home," Erie County District Attorney Frank J. Clark said. "He gave them a statement, and additional materials were seized."

Dise was arraigned on the Class E felony and freed on $5,000 bail.

Law enforcement officials said a Class E felony is punishable by a maximum of 1 1/3 to 4 years in prison, with a minimum of probation. First-time offenders with no aggravating circumstances typically are sentenced to probation and counseling.

However, anyone found guilty of possessing such obscene materials is listed on the state's Sex Offender Registry.


Reading group focuses on U.S. history, culture

"Reading Between the Lines for Adults," a public reading and discussion group, began in Buffalo and Amherst last week and will run through May.

Two reading/discussion groups of 20 members each will meet once a month for four months to discuss books that examine significant themes in American history and culture.

The first group focused on "Immigration and the Idea of America" on Wednesday in the Amherst Museum, 3755 Tonawanda Creek Road. The group will meet the second Wednesday of the month until May 10.

The second group will discuss "Branding of Place: How Corporate-style Branding Is Changing Where and How We Live," from 1:30 to 3 p.m. Feb. 26, March 26, April 30 and May 6 in the Buffalo & Erie County Historical Society Museum.

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