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In brief: Two WSP cars hit on West Side

Thu., Dec. 20, 2012

EVERETT – A Washington State Patrol car was rear-ended by a car Wednesday morning on Highway 525 in Snohomish County.

That followed an accident Tuesday night when another patrol car was hit on Highway 8 in Thurston County.

In the Snohomish County accident, Trooper Mark Francis said the trooper had stopped to help at a one-car accident when his car was hit by a pickup truck that lost control on a slushy roadway. No one was injured.

In the Thurston County accident, Trooper Guy Gill said the trooper was taken to a hospital with head, neck and shoulder pain.

The trooper was responding to a car in the ditch when he was hit by an SUV going too fast for conditions.

Gill said Wednesday the trooper is recovering with no broken bones.

Weather halts tsunami debris search

FORKS, Wash. – Stormy weather is keeping crews looking for tsunami debris away from a dock that washed ashore on a remote beach on the Washington state coast.

A spokesman for the state Marine Debris Task Force, David Workman, said high winds and tides are making it hard to reach the site on the Olympic Peninsula. He said a team hopes to arrive today.

Workman said there’s no confirmation yet whether the dock is debris from the March 2011 tsunami in Japan. It appears to be similar to a Japanese dock that washed ashore last June at Newport, Ore. It was cut up and removed.

The Coast Guard spotted the latest dock Tuesday on a wilderness beach of the Olympic National Park.

Student finds loaded gun on field trip

TILLAMOOK, Ore. – Police said a student on an end-of-the-year field trip Wednesday to see “The Hobbit” at a Tillamook movie theater found a loaded handgun on the floor beneath a seat.

Police Chief Terry Wright said it was a small, semiautomatic weapon with a round in the chamber and the safety off.

Had the student picked up the weapon and squeezed the trigger, Wright said, “it could have been catastrophic.”

Instead, the student notified adults. Officers cleared the theater and searched it.

Wright said he and his officers don’t think that the weapon was brought by a student or that it had been stashed – leaving the possibility somebody accidentally left it behind.

He said officers are working with federal agents to try to trace the owner.


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