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The Spokesman-Review Newspaper The Spokesman-Review

Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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NY cop killed in traffic stop called ‘exemplary’

BELLEROSE TERRACE, N.Y. (AP) — A suburban New York City police officer killed after being shot in what started out as a traffic stop was an "exemplary officer," a county official said Wednesday, as he acknowledged the death of the civilian had been overshadowed by the outpouring of grief for the officer. Nassau County Officer Arthur Lopez was killed Tuesday after getting shot in what had started out as a traffic stop near the Belmont Park racetrack. Ex-convict Darrell Fuller, 33, was arrested on charges of shooting him as well as another driver, 52-year-old Queens resident Raymond Facey, in a subsequent carjacking.

Vroom! Nation’s fastest road to open in Texas

SAN ANTONIO (AP) — Motorists, start your engines. It's opening day for the last leg of a Texas toll road with the nation's fastest speed limit. The final 41-mile stretch of Texas Highway 130 will open Wednesday after three years of construction. The speed limit will be 85 mph.

Gov’t to examine technology for automated cars

WASHINGTON (AP) — Cars that drive themselves may hold the potential to save thousands of lives, an Obama administration safety official said Tuesday, as the government prepares to launch a research initiative to determine the safety and reliability of automated driving technologies. Automated vehicles are the next "evolutionary step" in car technology, David Strickland, head of the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration, told an industry gathering sponsored by Swedish automaker Volvo and the Swedish Embassy in Washington. He said his agency has held extensive discussions with automakers and Google about what needs to happen before automated cars can be safely introduced to consumers.

Getting There: Five Mile Prairie Pathways plan OK’d

Two years of work by residents of Five Mile Prairie has resulted in a comprehensive plan for developing bicycle and pedestrian pathways. The plan acknowledges the challenges of creating safe routes on roads that were built to serve a largely rural area.

1 dead, 6 seriously injured in Arizona bus crash

WILLOW BEACH, Ariz. (AP) — The bus was on a routine tour of the Grand Canyon, taking tourists from the lights and glamour of Las Vegas to the beauty of the natural wonder. On such trips, passengers get a glimpse of the Hoover Dam and the northern Arizona wilderness, maybe even see a deer or two. That was the agenda for the 50 or so passengers aboard a charter Silver State Trailways bus on Friday. But as the bus was returning from the Grand Canyon that evening, investigators said something went terribly wrong.

1 dead, 4 seriously injured in Arizona bus crash

WILLOW BEACH, Ariz. (AP) — A tour bus careened off the road and crashed in northwest Arizona late Friday, killing the driver and leaving at least four passengers with serious injuries, authorities said. About 45 other passengers were less seriously hurt and not all of them required hospital treatment, the Arizona Highway Patrol said.

1 dead, 4 seriously injured in Arizona bus crash

KINGMAN, Ariz. (AP) — A tour bus careened off the road and crashed in northwest Arizona late Friday, killing the driver and leaving at least four passengers with serious injuries, authorities said. About 45 other passengers were less seriously hurt and not all of them required hospital treatment, the Arizona Highway Patrol said.

Illinois Amtrak train hits 111 mph in test run

JOLIET, Ill. (AP) — For the first time on a key Midwestern route between Chicago and St. Louis, an Amtrak passenger train topped 110 mph Friday, ripping through fog-shrouded farm fields and blowing past cars on a parallel highway. The test run on a special train packed with journalists, politicians and transportation officials was a milestone in President Barack Obama's vision of bringing high-speed rail to the United States and transforming the way Americans travel. It also was a welcome morale booster for high-speed rail advocates who have watched conservatives in Congress put the brakes on spending for fast train projects they view as expensive boondoggles.

44 TSA workers at Newark face firing or suspension

NEWARK, N.J. (AP) — The Transportation Security Administration on Friday moved to fire 25 employees at Newark Liberty International Airport and suspend 19 others for what it said was improper screening of checked luggage, the latest in a series of problems at one of the country's busiest airports. The alleged screening failures were uncovered late last year after surveillance cameras were installed in one of the airport's 25 screening rooms to check for possible thefts, the TSA said.

Fatal air crash decline presents safety challenge

WASHINGTON (AP) — It's been 43 months since the last deadly airline crash in the United States, the longest period without a fatal domestic accident since commercial aviation expanded after World War II. That sounds like unvarnished good news, but one consequence of having such a remarkable record is that it's difficult to justify imposing costly new safety rules on the economically fragile industry. In analyzing costs and benefits, federal rules assign a value of $6.2 million to each life saved. Even modest changes in regulations can cost the industry hundreds of millions of dollars when spread across a number of years.

Ill. Amtrak train set to hit 110 mph in test run

CHICAGO (AP) — In a modest milestone for President Barack Obama's high-speed rail vision, test runs will start zooming along a small section of the Amtrak line between Chicago and St. Louis at 110 mph on Friday. The 30-mph increase from the route's current top speed is a morale booster for advocates of high-speed rail in America who have watched conservatives in Congress put the brakes on spending for fast train projects they view as expensive boondoggles. But some rail experts question whether the route will become profitable, pose serious competition to air and automobile travel, or ever reach speeds comparable to the bullet trains blasting across Europe and Asia at 150 mph and faster.

Dust storm shuts down interstate in northern Okla.

TULSA, Okla. (AP) — A massive dust storm swirling reddish-brown clouds over northern Oklahoma triggered a multi-vehicle accident along a major interstate Thursday, forcing police to shut down part of the heavily traveled roadway amid near blackout conditions. In a scene reminiscent of the Dust Bowl days, choking dust suspended on strong wind gusts shrouded Interstate 35, which links Dallas and Oklahoma City to Kansas City, Mo. Video from television station helicopters showed the four-lane highway virtually disappearing into billowing dust on the harsh landscape near Blackwell, plus dozens of vehicles scattered in the median and on the shoulders.

Skydiver’s feat could influence spacesuit design

CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. (AP) — Now that the dust has settled in the New Mexico desert where supersonic skydiver "Fearless Felix" Baumgartner landed safely on his feet, researchers are exhilarated over the possibility his exploit could someday help save the lives of pilots and space travelers in a disaster. Baumgartner's death-defying jump Sunday from a balloon 24 miles above Earth yielded a wealth of information about the punishing effects of extreme speed and altitude on the human body — insights that could inform the development of improved spacesuits, new training procedures and emergency medical treatment.

Navy says submarine, Aegis cruiser collide

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) — The Navy submarine and the Aegis cruiser that collided off the East Coast are both back in port and officials are investigating what went wrong, the Pentagon said late Sunday. Lt. Commander Brian Badura of the U.S. Fleet Forces Command said in a news release that the submarine USS Montpelier arrived at Naval Submarine Base Kings Bay in southern Georgia. The USS San Jacinto (san juh-SIN'-toh) arrived at Naval Station Mayport in Jacksonville, Fla.

22 saved from sinking boat in San Francisco Bay

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Nearly two dozen people who were enjoying a bachelor party on what's billed as San Francisco Bay's only "floating wine tasting room" are OK after their boat hit a shoal near Alcatraz Island and began sinking Friday night, officials said. The 45-foot Neptune hit the shoal around 8:42 p.m. and started taking on water after the impact left a 1-foot gash in the side of the boat, U.S. Coast Guard spokesman Lt. j.g. Josh Dykman said.

Shuttle passes obstacle, heads toward LA museum

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Slowly surmounting a key obstacle, the shuttle Endeavour maintained a heading Saturday through the streets of Los Angeles toward its retirement home at a museum.

Shuttle passes obstacle, heads toward LA museum

LOS ANGELES (AP) — After slowly surmounting a key obstacle, the shuttle Endeavour maintained a heading Saturday through the streets of Los Angeles toward its retirement home at a museum. Endeavour's final mission began when it departed from the Los Angeles International Airport before dawn Friday, rolling on a 160-wheeled carrier past diamond-shaped "Shuttle Xing" signs.

22 saved from sinking passenger boat in SF Bay

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — A passenger boat carrying nearly two dozen people started sinking near Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay, but the U.S. Coast Guard says everyone aboard was safely rescued. Petty Officer Pamela Boehland says the 40-foot boat the Neptune hit an unknown object in the bay Friday night, leaving it with a 1-foot gash.

22 saved from sinking wine tasting boat in SF Bay

SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Officials say a wine tasting cruise boat carrying nearly two dozen people started sinking near Alcatraz island in San Francisco Bay, but everyone aboard was safely rescued. U.S. Coast Guard Petty Officer Pamela Boehland says the 40-foot boat the Neptune hit an unknown object in the bay Friday night, leaving it with a 1-foot gash.