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Sinkhole collapses part of Corvette Museum
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 13:31

BOWLING GREEN, Ky. (AP) — A sinkhole collapsed part of the National Corvette Museum in Kentucky on Wednesday, damaging eight cars but not shutting down the building.

Museum spokeswoman Katie Frassinelli said six of the cars were owned by the museum and two — a 1993 ZR-1 Spyder and a 2009 ZR1 Blue Devil — were on loan from General Motors.

Bowling Green city spokeswoman Kim Lancaster said the hole opened up at about 5:40 a.m. CST Wednesday, setting off an alarm and a call to the fire department. Frassinelli said no one was in the museum at the time.

The hole is in part of the domed section of the museum, and that area will remain closed. That's an original part of the facility for which was completed in 1994. The fire department estimated the hole is about 40 feet across and 25 to 30 feet deep. Pictures of the sinkhole show a collapsed section of floor with multiple cars visible inside the hole. A few feet away, other Corvettes sit undamaged and undisturbed.

Frassinelli said the rest of the museum was open Wednesday.

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Three killed when ambulance careens off Texas roadway
Written by Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 13:26

SAN ANGELO, Texas (AP) — Three people have been killed and one is injured after an ambulance careened off a slick West Texas roadway and caught fire.

The Sterling City ambulance was transporting 45-year-old Jose Cruz Gurrola early Tuesday to a San Angelo hospital.

The Texas Department of Public Safety said Wednesday that icy conditions caused the ambulance to lose control, veer off the road near Carlsbad, then flip upside down before catching fire.

Gurrola died at the scene along with 43-year-old Anacleto Gonzalez Gurrola, who was accompanying his brother to the hospital. Also killed was 52-year-old paramedic Raymond Bernard Allison. The ambulance driver, 45-year-old Joann Adamiak Moore, was taken to a hospital for treatment of "incapacitating injuries." There was no listing for her at Shannon Medical Center in San Angelo on Wednesday.


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Two killed, two hurt by avalanche in eastern Oregon
Written by GOSIA WOZNIACKA, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 07:16

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — Two backcountry skiers were killed and two others were seriously injured when an avalanche in eastern Oregon's Wallowa Mountains hit a party of eight, officials said.

The deaths mean at least 12 people have died in avalanches nationally this season, including six since Sunday.

Low clouds and poor visibility grounded a rescue effort for the injured skiers late Tuesday night, Baker County Undersheriff Warren Thompson said. Two medics were with the man and woman.

Four unhurt skiers were being brought out by snowcat, a large tracked vehicle that can maneuver on snow, Thompson said.

The snowcat was unable to reach the injured skiers because of the incline of the slope they were on, the undersheriff said. The injured woman suffered two broken legs and a shoulder injury while the man had a broken thigh bone, Thompson said.

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Stroke risk tied to cold, humidity, weather swings
Written by MARILYNN MARCHIONE, AP Chief Medical Writer   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 13:24

There may be a link between weather and the risk of suffering a stroke, say researchers who analyzed climate trends and hospital records on millions of Americans.

Cold weather, high humidity and big daily temperature swings seem to land more people in the hospital with strokes. As it got warmer, risk fell — 3 percent for every 5 degrees, the study found.

"Maybe some of these meteorological factors serve as a trigger," said Judith Lichtman, a Yale University stroke researcher who led the study. With global climate change and extreme weather like this week's freak storm in the South, "this could be increasingly important," she said.

Lichtman and colleagues from Harvard and Duke universities gave results of their study Wednesday at the American Heart Association's International Stroke Conference in San Diego. It is the largest and most detailed research on this issue.

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Bedrock GOP principle dropped in debt ceiling vote
Written by JIM KUHNHENN, Associated Press   
Wednesday, 12 February 2014 07:11

WASHINGTON (AP) — It was once the backbone of the House Republican majority — the hard-line stand that brought President Barack Obama to the negotiating table and yielded more than $2 trillion in deficit reduction.

On Tuesday, it abruptly vanished, the victim of Republican disunity and a president determined not to bargain again.

During the summer budget negotiations in 2011, House Speaker John Boehner had insisted that any increase in the nation's borrowing limit be matched dollar for dollar with spending cuts. It became the "Boehner Rule," a mantra of fiscal discipline. And while it didn't always live up to its tit-for-tat formula, it helped drive budget talks and kept deficit reduction at the fore of the Republican agenda.

But there are limits to Republican power, and on Tuesday inevitability finally caught up to the speaker.

Boehner let Congress vote on a measure to extend the nation's borrowing authority for 13 months without any spending conditions — a "clean bill" that was an unequivocal victory for Obama. It passed 221-201, with only 28 Republican votes. The Senate still has to approve the extension, but that's considered a mere formality in the Democratic-controlled chamber.

Boehner's retreat hardly came as a surprise.

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