April 18, 2009 in Nation/World

Pilot, 80, killed in crash into home

 

A small plane sputtered and dove into a house shortly after taking off from a local airport Friday morning, slicing the home down the middle into two charred pieces. The pilot was killed.

The twin-engine Cessna 421 crashed about 11:20 a.m., and the house burst into flames. The owner’s nephew barely escaped the catastrophe, leaving just before the aircraft hit to visit his aunt.

“For now, it’s a bit difficult to explain how I feel,” said Oscar Nolasco, 52, who has lived in the home for nearly 20 years. “Everything is gone.”

The house was about a mile from the Fort Lauderdale Executive Airport, where the plane had just taken off. The pilot, Cecil A. Murray, 80, of Tarmac, did not survive, said Broward County Sheriff Al Lamberti. There were no passengers aboard the plane.

Washington

DynCorp told to replace managers

The State Department has ordered DynCorp International to replace the senior managers in charge of a major police training contract in Afghanistan after it launched an investigation into the company’s handling of an employee who died of a possible drug overdose, government officials said.

The probe involves allegations that the company ignored signs of drug abuse among employees. The investigation centers on the death of a security team leader working under DynCorp’s 18-month, $317 million civilian police training contract, a key element of the U.S. government’s effort to rebuild Afghanistan in the wake of the 2001 removal of the Taliban from power.

DynCorp is the State Department’s largest contractor, holding billions of dollars in contracts, and the department is the firm’s single largest customer.

The 49-year-old employee was found dead March 17 in his quarters at company housing in Kabul, company officials said. Investigators are looking into a number of allegations, including that the employee procured drugs on monthly trips to Thailand, and that his superiors were aware of his conduct and failed to take action despite the company’s zero-tolerance policy for drugs, several sources briefed on the matter said.

Cincinnati

Lawsuit filed over popcorn flavoring

Dozens of plant workers who claim their health was damaged by exposure to a chemical used to give a buttery flavor to microwave popcorn have filed lawsuits in Cincinnati against makers of the flavoring.

At least 43 workers have filed lawsuits that claim their lungs were damaged by inhaling fumes from the chemical. Some work at a local plant of Givaudan Flavors Corp. of Cincinnati, which supplies the flavoring to food manufacturers. Many others are from a plant in Marion, Ohio, owned by ConAgra Foods, which is based in Omaha, Neb.

From wire reports


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