Two Jets Collide Near Outer Banks
RALEIGH, N.C. (AP) - The Coast Guard says two jets collided off the North Carolina coast and four survivors have been taken to hospitals. Coast Guard spokesman Petty Officer 3rd Class Joshua Canup says Coast Guard crews were notified about 10:30 a.m. Thursday of the collision about 25 miles east of North Carolina's Outer Banks. He says the four were plucked off a commercial fishing ship that pulled them out of the Atlantic Ocean and flown by Coast Guard helicopter to a hospital in Norfolk, Virginia.
Trump Clinches Nomination
WASHINGTON (AP) - Donald Trump has reached the number of delegates needed to clinch the Republican nomination for president.
His triumph completes an unlikely rise that has upended the political landscape and sets the stage for a bitter fall campaign.
Trump was put over the top in the Associated Press delegate count by a small number of the party's unbound delegates who told the AP on Thursday they will support him at the convention.
It takes 1,237 delegates to win the Republican nomination for president. Trump has reached 1,238. With 303 delegates at stake on June 7, Trump will easily pad his total, avoiding a contested convention this summer.
Trump is a political neophyte who for years delivered caustic commentary from the sidelines but has never run for office.
Dipping Into Social Security
CHICAGO (AP) - Taking Social Security benefits early comes with a price. But in a new survey, more than 4 in 10 Americans age 50 and over say they'll dip into the program before reaching full retirement age. In the poll by the Associated Press and the N-O-R-C Center for Public Affairs Research, 44 percent say Social Security will be their biggest source of income during retirement. Americans can begin collecting as early as age 62, but benefits drop by up to 30 percent.
Airport Fences Not Always Secure
UNDATED (AP) - With airline passengers fuming about long security lines inside terminals, an Associated Press investigation finds that outside the nation's busiest airports someone gets over fences or through vehicle gates that guard planes and runways about every 10 days.
Despite investments to fortify some airfields, the incidents remain as frequent as ever.
In 2015, a woman walked onto the tarmac in San Francisco and tried to flag down a jet. John F. Kennedy International in New York City had three fence jumpers.
Altogether, AP learned of 345 perimeter security breaches at 31 major U.S. airports since 2004. And that's an undercount, because some authorities tried to suppress information.
Airport officials say no intrusion has been linked to terrorism and that most people are caught quickly. (photo: AP)
Busy Highways Over Memorial Day Weekend
WASHINGTON (AP) - The lowest gas prices in more than a decade could make this Memorial Day one of the busiest ever on the roads.
AAA projects some 38 million people will travel 50 miles or more over the holiday weekend. That's about 700,000 more than last year and the most since 2005. And the auto club says the overwhelming majority of those travelers - 89 percent - plan to go by car.
The average price for a gallon of regular is a $2.30 nationwide, about 34 cents less than a year ago, and AAA estimates that Americans have saved more than $15 billion on gas so far this year.
AAA also cites rising personal income and a strong labor market as factors encouraging Americans to head to the beaches, mountains and other destinations this Memorial Day weekend.
Battle Over Steel Imports
BEIJING (AP) - China is accusing the United States of hampering trade after Washington imposed duties of up to 450 percent on Chinese steel in its latest response to a flood of low-priced imports.
The Ministry of Commerce is complaining that U.S. regulators discriminated against Chinese suppliers by using incorrect standards for deciding what production cost and market prices should have been.
Beijing faces mounting criticism from the United States and Europe that it is exporting steel at unfairly low prices to clear a backlog in its glutted home market. Western governments say that hurts their producers and threatens thousands of jobs.
Johhny Depp and Amber Head Divorcing
LOS ANGELES (AP) - Johnny Depp has asked a court to determine that he should not pay spousal support to his estranged wife Amber Heard, who filed for divorce after 15 months of marriage. Court records show Depp filed the response Wednesday to Heard's divorce petition. His response also requests that Heard, also an actor, pay her own attorney fees. It does not list a date of separation. Heard filed for divorce on Monday and stated the couple separated the day before. Both actors cited irreconcilable differences for the breakup. The actors married in February 2014. They have no children together, and the divorce filings do not indicate they have a prenuptial agreement. (Photo: CNN)
Trust Building Upgrade
A new look for a downtown landmark. The Washington City Planning Commission will recommend a conditional use application to Mayor and council for the rehabilitation of the Trust Building. The renovations to the historic building could begin by the end of the year. Upgrades include the construction of 24 residential apartments in the annex tower. This also includes the addition of extra commercial and retail space. The building, currently owned by TREK Development Group, also plans to upgrade the parking garage to a two-story structure to accommodate more vehicles. John Ginocchi, VP of Development for TREK, says the existing commercial spaces will be retained but the new parking garage will not be open to the public. The renovations, if approved next month by mayor and council, come in at roughly $8 million. (Photo: Architect Jody Schuman, LAB8 Design, presents building plans to members of the planning commission Wednesday night.)
Homicide Charges May Be Filed In Suicide Pact
BELLE VERNON, Pa. (AP) - A coroner says the death of an elderly woman whose throat was allegedly slashed by her husband in a botched "suicide pact" was a homicide. Westmoreland County authorities have said they might charge the man with homicide once the autopsy on 84-year-old Wilma Jean Friday was complete. She died Tuesday; her husband is recovering from cutting his own wrists before the couple was found at home Sunday.
Report Finds Contaminated Water Wells
DIMOCK, Pa. (AP) - A new federal report says more than two dozen northeastern Pennsylvania water wells had high levels of contamination in 2012 that could've affected peoples' health, created a physical hazard or otherwise been made unfit to drink in its raw form.
The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reports the Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry reviewed water sampling data collected during a Dimock Township groundwater contamination investigation.
The agency says contaminants in 27 wells could've affected peoples' health. Methane gas buildup could've created a hazard at 17 wells.
Texas-based Cabot Oil & Gas Corp. has been barred from drilling new gas wells until the water quality returns to pre-drilling conditions at 18 wells.
Cabot says the sampling data doesn't show a relationship between the contaminants and oil and gas development.
Canonsburg Gas Station Can Sell Beer
HARRISBURG, Pa. (AP) - The Pennsylvania Liquor Control Board is granting nine more licenses to businesses that sell gasoline. It's the latest step in loosening the hold on beer sales by bars and beer distributors. The Liquor Control Board's vote Wednesday is the first since February. That's when the state Supreme Court said it would take up a case challenging whether a convenience store can sell beer and gasoline without violating state law. The beer licenses are for groceries and convenience stores including in Canonsburg--the Sunoco gas station on West Pike Street. Liquor Control Board officials say dozens of beer licensees also sell gas. That's despite wording in the state liquor law that bans alcohol sales licenses in locations, places and properties where gasoline is sold. (photo: WPXI-TV)
Violence At Concert Venue
NEW YORK (AP) - One person is dead and three others are wounded following a shooting inside a concert venue in New York City. Police say a 34-year-old man was shot in the chest and a 33-year-old man was shot in the stomach. A 26-year-old woman was shot in the leg. Hip-hop artist T.I. was scheduled to perform at the concert at Irving Plaza, near Manhattan's Union Square.
Tornado Touches Down In Kansas
CHAPMAN, Kan. (AP) - Officials in Kansas say a large tornado has damaged or destroyed as many as 25 homes in a rural area in the northern part of the state. There were no immediate reports of injuries or fatalities. The National Weather Service says the twister was on the ground for about an hour and half last night. Emergency crews are in Dickinson County to make so no one is trapped.
States Sue Over Transgender Use Of Bathrooms
AUSTIN, Texas (AP) - Texas and 10 other states are suing the Obama administration over its directive to U.S. public schools to let transgender students use the bathrooms and locker rooms that match their gender identity. The lawsuit announced Wednesday accuses the Obama administration of "running roughshod over commonsense policies" that protect children. It also includes Oklahoma, Alabama, Wisconsin, West Virginia, Tennessee, Maine, Arizona, Louisiana, Utah and Georgia.
Flags Going Up At Arlington National Cemetery
ARLINGTON, Va. (AP) - Soldiers are placing nearly a quarter of a million U.S. flags at Arlington National Cemetery as part of a Memorial Day tradition.
The event Thursday is known as "flags in." It marks the beginning of Memorial Day weekend activities at the cemetery.
The U.S. Army Military District of Washington says in a statement that the tradition began in 1948. The mission is carried out by the 3rd U.S. Infantry Regiment, nicknamed "The Old Guard." The unit puts every available soldier to work, planting small flags in front of the more than 230,000 grave markers.
The soldiers also place about 14,000 flags at the Soldiers' and Airmen's Home National Cemetery in Washington.
The flags are removed after Memorial Day, before the cemeteries open to the public.