Nation/World

In brief: Cooler weather aids firefighters

CAMARILLO, Calif. – Cool, moist air moving into Southern California on Sunday helped firefighters build containment lines around a huge wildfire burning through coastal mountains.

Fire crews took advantage of improved conditions as the high winds and hot, dry air of recent days were replaced by the normal Pacific air, significantly reducing fire activity.

The 44-square-mile blaze at the western end of the Santa Monica Mountains was 60 percent surrounded.

Full containment was expected today, according to Ventura County fire officials.

The progress led authorities to lift all remaining evacuation orders.

“We’ve really transitioned from a fire attack to a mop-up patrol,” said Nick Schuler, battalion chief for the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection.

Investigators say the fire appears to have been sparked by an undetermined ignition of grass and debris on the side of Highway 101, perhaps by a piece of metal falling into the tinder-dry brush.

Auction to feature Apollo 11 artifacts

AMHERST, N.H. – A New Hampshire auction house will soon accept bids on space and aviation artifacts, including an electrocardiogram of Apollo 11 Commander Neil Armstrong’s heartbeat taken when he first set foot on the moon.

Amherst-based RR Auction will take bids on the EKG, which registered a normal heartbeat, and other artifacts during an online auction from May 16 through May 23.

Other artifacts include the joystick controller operated by Apollo 11 astronauts Buzz Aldrin and Michael Collins in the Apollo 11 command module.

Armstrong took his “giant leap for mankind” on July 20, 1969. Buzz Aldrin later joined him on the moon’s surface.

Armstrong, an Ohio native, died in August at age 82.

Obama’s next tour will focus on jobs

WASHINGTON – Immigration, guns and national security are dominating the discussion on Capitol Hill, but Americans by and large are still focused on their bottom line. So President Barack Obama is launching a series of quick jaunts around the country to remind Americans he’s still got jobs and the economy on his mind.

Obama will kick off the effort Thursday with a trip to Austin, Texas, the White House said. While in Texas, the president will visit a technical high school and meet with entrepreneurs. He’ll also drop in on a tech company and talk with blue-collar workers.



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