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Hiker survives 1,000-foot slide

Compiled from wire reports The Spokesman-Review

Mona, Utah A hiker fell about 1,000 feet down a mountainside – riding an avalanche feet-first and suffering only minor injuries.

Mark Thomas and two companions were hiking on a ridge near Mount Nebo on Saturday when snow gave way beneath them, police said.

His friends did not fall, but Thomas slid about 1,000 feet, triggering an avalanche.

Thomas, 21, of Salt Lake City, told police he rode the cascading snow feet-first and came to a stop partially buried in a canyon. He dug himself out of the snow.

Three die after train, ambulance collide

Little Rock, Ark. A train slammed into an ambulance that apparently tried to get out of its path but stopped at a rail crossing, killing all three paramedics on board. The patient in the vehicle survived.

The paramedics, ages 23 and 37, died at the scene Saturday after the Union Pacific train hit the front end of the ambulance, spinning it around and ejecting the emergency workers.

A third paramedic, age 23, was taken to a hospital but later died.

Police said the driver apparently decided he couldn’t make it across a rural road crossing, backed up and came only a few feet from getting out of the train’s path.

List of AIDS patients sent to health staff

West Palm Beach, Fla. A confidential list of 4,500 southeast Florida residents with AIDS and 2,000 others who are HIV positive was inadvertently e-mailed to more than 800 county health workers, officials said.

John W. “Jack” Nolan, who compiles data on AIDS and HIV cases for the Palm Beach County Health Department, e-mailed county employees with a monthly statistics report last Thursday.

He accidentally attached a file listing names and addresses of AIDS patients and HIV-positive individuals, said a spokesman for the health department.

Nolan realized his mistake within minutes and contacted the department’s computer specialists, who shut down the agency’s e-mail system for about an hour. Technicians removed all copies of the e-mail from the system.

Five people left dead after murder-suicide

Loogootee, Ind. A man burst into a trailer home Sunday and shot to death his two children, his estranged wife and her boyfriend before killing himself along a road in southern Indiana, police said.

Arthur Lee Smith, 36, entered the home his estranged wife shared with her boyfriend and shot them in the head, authorities said. Smith then entered a bedroom and shot his and his wife’s two children, ages 4 and 5.

Minutes after a neighbor reported the gunfire to police, an officer confronted Smith, who was walking along a roadway, telling him to stop. Police said he pulled a gun to his head and killed himself.

Suspect ordered held over factory shootings

Romulus, Mich. A paper plant worker charged with shooting the supervisor who had just fired him and fatally wounding a co-worker who tried to translate for him was ordered held without bail Sunday.

Gustabo DeJesus Vanegas was charged with first-degree murder of the translator, assault with intent to murder his former boss and using a gun in a felony, police said.

At his arraignment Sunday, Vanegas asked for a court- appointed lawyer. Another court appearance was set for Feb. 28.

Authorities say Vanegas, 31, was fired Friday from his job as a contract worker at the International Paper Co. plant in Taylor, a suburb of Detroit. He then allegedly got a 9 mm handgun gun from his vehicle, returned to the plant and confronted his supervisor.

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