In brief: Storm helps crews stop Nevada fire
RENO, Nev. – Rain helped crews surround a brush fire that destroyed 29 homes and forced thousands to flee in Washoe Valley.
Fire officials declared the blaze contained Saturday after a storm brought precipitation that the region hasn’t seen in months. All evacuations were lifted and U.S. 395 reopened through the 3,200-acre fire zone.
Panetta says U.S. will keep warships
ABOARD THE USS ENTERPRISE – Defense Secretary Leon Panetta told sailors aboard the country’s oldest aircraft carrier that the U.S. is committed to maintaining a fleet of 11 of the formidable warships despite budget pressures, in part to project sea power against Iran.
Panetta also told the crowd of 1,700 gathered in the hangar bay of the USS Enterprise that the ship is heading to the Persian Gulf region and will steam through the Strait of Hormuz in a direct message to Tehran.
Iran has warned it will block the strait, a major transit point for global oil supplies, and bluntly told the U.S. not to send carriers into the Gulf. The U.S. has said it would continue to deploy ships there.
N.J. barn blaze kills show horses
LAFAYETTE, N.J. – A fast-moving fire destroyed a barn owned by a noted New Jersey equestrian family, killing 22 show horses worth tens of thousands of dollars each.
State Police Sgt. Brian Polite said the barn was engulfed in flames when troopers arrived around 1:40 a.m. Saturday in Lafayette. The blaze was soon extinguished, but all the horses inside were killed.