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Today's News

  • Today in History for August 21st
  • LA Middle School to open two hours late after gas leak

    Los Alamos Middle School was evacuated Monday afternoon when a gas line was inadvertently punctured at approximately 1:10 p.m. in the construction zone.

    Students and staff were immediately evacuated while the safety of the campus was assessed and students did return to their classrooms. There were no injuries and all students and staff were safe, the district announced this afternoon.

    Middle school students attending a lecture at the high school Monday night did not seem too worried by the afternoon event. 

    "We were all evacuated and moved off into the field, so  we were pretty far away from it," said eighth grade student June Cook.

    Gerd Kunde, father of middle school student Zar Kunde, said he was not particulary worried for his son. In fact they both laughed off the event. "I guess the best part for him is he gets to sleep in tomorrow," said Gerd, noting the students will be reporting to school at 10 a.m. instead of 8 a.m. Tuesday.

    A notice posted on the LAPS website states, "To ensure that all repairs on the punctured gas line in the construction area have been completed and a safety inspection has been conducted, there will be a TWO HOUR DELAY tomorrow, Tuesday, August 21, 2012 at Los Alamos Middle School.

  • Summertime blues for drivers: Gas at August record

    You may pay more than ever for a late-summer drive.

    U.S. drivers paid an average of $3.72 per gallon on Monday. That's the highest price ever on this date, according to auto club AAA, a shade above the $3.717 average on Aug. 20, 2008. A year ago, the average was $3.578.

    More daily records are likely over the next few weeks. The national average could increase to $3.75 per gallon by Labor Day, said Tom Kloza, chief oil analyst at Oil Price Information Service. By comparison, gas prices stayed below $3.70 in late August and early September in both 2008 and 2011.

    Retail gasoline prices have gone up about 39 cents per gallon, or 12 percent, since hitting a low of $3.326 on July 2, according to AAA, OPIS and Wright Express. Kloza estimates that U.S. drivers are paying $149 million more each day for gas than in early July. That isn't what the sluggish economy needs, since any extra money that goes to fill gas tanks doesn't get spent at movie theaters or restaurants.

  • Flood Advisory until 5 p.m.

    THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN ALBUQUERQUE HAS ISSUED AN

    * ARROYO AND SMALL STREAM FLOOD ADVISORY FOR... NORTHERN LOS ALAMOS COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NEW MEXICO SOUTHEASTERN RIO ARRIBA COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NEW MEXICO NORTHEASTERN SANDOVAL COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NEW MEXICO NORTHWESTERN SANTA FE COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NEW MEXICO

    * UNTIL 500 PM MDT

    * AT 254 PM MDT NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE DOPPLER RADAR INDICATED HEAVY RAIN OVER SANTA CLARA CANYON. RADAR ESTIMATES AND SURFACE OBSERVATIONS INDICATE AROUND ONE HALF INCH OF RAIN HAS FALLEN WITH THESE STORMS IN LESS THAN 1 HOUR. THIS ACTIVITY IS MOVING QUICKLY EAST DOWN SANTA CLARA CANYON AROUND 20 MPH... THEREFORE THE FLOOD THREAT IS EXPECTED TO BE MINOR AT THIS TIME.

    * STRONG FLOWS AND HIGH WATER LEVELS ARE EXPECTED IN ARROYOS... SMALL STREAMS AND OVER LOW WATER CROSSINGS. RAPID RUNOFF CAN ALSO BE EXPECTED IMMEDIATELY OVER AND DOWNSTREAM FROM WILDFIRE BURN SCARS.

    PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

    RUNOFF FROM RAINFALL WILL CAUSE ELEVATED WATER LEVELS WITHIN VULNERABLE DRAINAGES IN AND DOWNSTREAM OF THE LAS CONCHAS FIRE BURN AREA.

  • Humorist Phyllis Diller dies at 95 in Los Angeles--Video Extra

    LOS ANGELES (AP) — Phyllis Diller, the housewife turned humorist who aimed some of her sharpest barbs at herself, punctuating her jokes with her trademark cackle, died Monday morning in her Los Angeles home at age 95.

    "She died peacefully in her sleep and with a smile on her face," her longtime manager, Milton Suchin, told The Associated Press.

    Diller, who suffered a near-fatal heart attack in 1999, was found by her son, Perry Diller. The cause of her death has not been released.

    She was a staple of nightclubs and television from the 1950s — when female comics were rare indeed — until her retirement in 2002. Diller built her stand-up act around the persona of the corner-cutting housewife ("I bury a lot of my ironing in the backyard") with bizarre looks, a wardrobe to match (by "Omar of Omaha") and a husband named "Fang."

  • Plutomium hearings begin this week in LA

    The U.S. Department of Energy’s (DOE) National Nuclear Security Administration begins public hearings this week on the Draft Surplus Plutonium Disposition Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement (Draft SPD Supplemental EIS).

    The first one is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. Tuesday at the Holiday Inn Express in Los Alamos.

    The Draft Supplemental EIS analyzes the potential environmental impacts of alternatives for the disposition of 7.1 metric tons (MT) of additional weapons-usable plutonium from pits that were declared surplus to national defense needs in 2007 but were not included in DOE's prior decisions as well as 6 MT of surplus, weapons-usable non-pit plutonium.

    The SPD Supplemental EIS analyzes four alternative disposition pathways: disposition of plutonium using the can-in-canister vitrification approach, involving small cans of material, which would be placed in a rack inside a Defense Waste Processing Facility canister and surrounded with vitrified high-level radioactive waste at the Savannah River Site (SRS); disposition of non-pit plutonium via H-Canyon and DWPF at SRS; disposal of non-pit plutonium at the Waste Isolation Pilot Plant (WIPP) in New Mexico; and fabrication of pit and some non-pit plutonium into mixed oxide (MOX) fuel for use in domestic commercial nuclear power reactors.

  • ChemCam zaps first Martian rock

     NASA's Curiosity rover has zapped its first Martian rock, aiming its laser for the sake of science.

    During the target practice on Sunday. Curiosity fired 30 pulses at a nearby rock over a 10-second window, burning a small hole.

    Since landing in Gale Crater two weeks ago, the six-wheel rover has been checking out its instruments including the laser. During its two-year mission, Curiosity was expected to point the laser at various rocks as it drives toward Mount Sharp, a 3-mile-high mountain rising from the crater floor.

    Its goal is to determine whether the Martian environment was habitable.

  • Autopsy: Death of handcuffed man in Ark. cop car a suicide--Video Extra

    LITTLE ROCK, Ark. (AP) — A man whose hands were cuffed behind him in the back seat of an Arkansas patrol car shot himself in the right temple with a handgun he apparently concealed from arresting officers, according to an autopsy report released Monday that listed the death as a suicide.

    The state crime lab report, signed by three medical examiners, said the muzzle of a gun was placed against Chavis Carter's head when it was fired. Jonesboro police released the report to The Associated Press and other news organizations under a Freedom of Information Act request.

    The report said the manner of death was ruled a suicide based on autopsy findings and investigative conclusions from the Jonesboro police department, which has faced questions from Carter's family and community members about the circumstances surrounding the July 28 shooting.

    "He was cuffed and placed into a police car, where apparently he produced a weapon, and despite being handcuffed, shot himself in the head," the report said. Chief Medical Examiner Charles P. Kokes did not immediately return a phone message seeking comment.

  • Augusta National adds first 2 female members

    NEW YORK (AP) — For the first time in its 80-year history, Augusta National Golf Club has female members.

    The home of the Masters, under increasing criticism the last decade because of its all-male membership, invited former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice and South Carolina financier Darla Moore to become the first women in green jackets when the club opens for a new season in October.

    Both women accepted.

    "This is a joyous occasion," Augusta National chairman Billy Payne said Monday.

    The move likely ends a debate that intensified in 2002 when Martha Burk of the National Council of Women's Organizations urged the club to include women among its members. Former club chairman Hootie Johnson stood his ground, even at the cost of losing Masters television sponsors for two years, when he famously said Augusta National might one day have a woman in a green jacket, "but not at the point of a bayonet."

  • Santa Fe merchants sue city over rules at plaza

    ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. (AP) — A downtown Santa Fe merchants group that feels city officials have ignored their concerns about events on the Santa Fe Plaza has filed a lawsuit contending that the city hasn't been following its own laws.

    The Albuquerque Journal reports that the lawsuit filed earlier this month by Santa Fe Downtown Merchants Inc. refers to public safety, access for existing businesses and the expansion of some events beyond the boundaries set in ordinance.

    Mayor David Coss says city streets are under the control of the city, which can issue a permit for groups to use them.

    Coss says the Plaza belongs to everyone, not just the downtown merchants.

    Elizabeth Pettus, president of the Downtown Merchants, says the group is seeking to define exactly what city ordinances do and don't require.