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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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News >  Nation/World

‘Serious doubts’ on subway threat

Compiled from wire reports The Spokesman-Review

New York A reported plot to bomb city subways with remote-controlled explosives has not been corroborated after days of investigation, law enforcement officials said Sunday amid an easing sense of concern.

Interrogations of suspects captured in Iraq last week after an informant’s tip about bomb-laden suitcases and baby carriages have yet to yield evidence that the plot is real, officials said.

“The intelligence community has been able to determine that there are very serious doubts about the credibility of this specific threat,” Department of Homeland Security spokesman Russ Knocke said. “This is after ongoing review and analysis.”

Plane turns around after hitting birds

Windsor Locks, Conn. A Northwest Airlines plane that left Connecticut bound for Indianapolis was forced to turn around after hitting a flock of birds.

The plane circled the airport to burn off fuel before landing at Bradley International Airport, said John Wallace, a spokesman for the airport.

Mechanics were checking the engines for possible damage, and the plane was grounded Sunday afternoon, Wallace said. Passengers were being rerouted on other flights.

Flight 4768, which was carrying 42 passengers and crew members, returned to Bradley about an hour after departure.

Gasoline prices rise 10 cents after Rita

Los Angeles Retail gasoline prices have risen an average of 10 cents per gallon in the past two weeks as Hurricane Rita idled refineries along the Gulf Coast, squeezing production capacity already hurt by Hurricane Katrina, according to a nationwide survey released Sunday.

The weighted average price for all three grades of gasoline rose to $2.93 a gallon on Friday compared with the previous survey two weeks earlier, said Trilby Lundberg, who publishes the semimonthly Lundberg Survey of 7,000 gas stations around the country.

Self-serve regular gas averaged $2.91 a gallon nationwide. The price for midgrade was $3.01, while premium-grade hit $3.11.

The average price of gas at the pump had fallen about 20 cents per gallon in the previous survey before Rita slammed into Texas and Louisiana.

Registered Traveler program expanding

Airports, security companies and the federal government are mobilizing to launch a nationwide program to speed “trusted travelers” through airport security.

The Registered Traveler program, run largely by the U.S. Transportation Security Administration, has been tested at only six airports, but officials are getting ready to expand the program to any airport that wants it.

On Friday, Congress paved the way for the program’s expansion by approving the Department of Homeland Security’s request to charge people fees for background checks. Without that authority, Registered Traveler would have no money.

Thomas Blank, TSA’s former acting deputy administrator, said in June that registered travelers might not have to remove their coats and shoes or take laptops out of cases when they go through metal detectors. Blank said the fee would be $30 to $50.

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