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NATIONAL BRIEFS


IOWA: Buggy driver's wife killed

The buggy driver whose horses trampled spectators at the Fourth of July parade in Bellevue had tried desperately to stop the rampage, clinging to the reins as the animals dragged the buggy down the street, his family said Monday. Mardell Steines was with his wife, Janet, his daughter-in-law, his grandson, 7, and his granddaughter, 5, when the horses bolted toward the end of the parade, injuring 24 people and killing Janet, 60, who was thrown out and struck a concrete driveway. She died in a hospital in Iowa City.


WASHINGTON: A rash of near air crashes

A 120-seat United Airlines plane bound for Reagan National Airport from Chicago narrowly avoided colliding with a business jet departing from Dulles last week, the latest of 22 recent potentially dangerous mistakes by air traffic controllers who command the skies above Washington. The planes were within 15 seconds of colliding, an internal FAA document shows, when an onboard warning system ordered the pilots to take evasive action. The incidents come as a new cadre of controllers is being trained to replace a generation of retiring controllers, a legacy of the 1981 strike during which President Ronald Reagan fired virtually the entire staff of controllers. FAA regulations require that planes be separated by at least three miles or 1,000 feet in altitude. The NTSB is investigating almost a dozen midair near-collisions nationally since March.


HAWAII: Census trespassing charge

In these divisive times, Census worker Russell Haas has come to expect some resistance when he goes door to door to count the residents of the rugged communities near Kilauea volcano. Haas, 57, didn't expect to get arrested, though. An attempt to get one resident, a county police officer, to fill out Census forms landed Haas in the back of a patrol car with a trespassing charge. The case is now in federal court, the latest example of disputes this year between Census workers and residents who don't want to deal with them. It has created a rare instance in which federal prosecutors have stepped in to serve as criminal defense attorneys.

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