5 dead in NE Pa. helicopter crash
NOXEN, Pa. (AP) — A county coroner says four adults and one child were killed in Saturday night's helicopter crash in a rugged area of northeastern Pennsylvania.
Wyoming County coroner Thomas Kukuchka says the pilot reported he was losing altitude just before air traffic controllers lost track of the helicopter around 10:30 p.m. Saturday.
Kukuchka says those on board appear to have been a man and his son, a man and his daughter and the pilot.
The Federal Aviation Administration says the helicopter had departed from central New York bound for an airport in Lehighton on Saturday night.
Kukuchka says the area experience strong storms on Saturday night. He said rough weather also hampered search efforts.
The wreckage was found around 2 p.m. Sunday.
The FAA says the National Transportation Safety Board will lead the investigation.
Rescuers say 37 bodies in Italy bus plunge
ROME (AP) — Rescuers are saying that at least 37 bodies have been pulled from the mangled wreckage of a tour bus that plunged dozens of yards off a major highway in southern Italy after slamming into several cars slowed by heavy traffic. The bus landed in a ravine.
The Italian news agency ANSA quotes rescuers as also saying at least 11 people were injured, two of them very critically, in the crash Sunday night near Avellino, outside Naples, and some 160 miles south of Rome. Italian TV quotes people at the scene as saying about 49 people were on the bus.
First reports said the passengers had spent the day in Puglia, an area near the Adriatic on the east coast famed for religious shrines. But a state radio reporter at the scene says authorities told him that the bus had been bringing the passengers home after an outing to a thermal spa near the town of Benevento, not far from Avellino.
State radio quotes Avellino police as saying the bus driver was among the dead.
Spanish train crash driver charged provisionally
SANTIAGO DE COMPOSTELA, Spain (AP) — The driver of a Spanish train that derailed at high speed killing 79 people has been provisionally charged with multiple cases of negligent homicide.
A court statement issued late Sunday said investigative magistrate Luis Alaez released Francisco Jose Garzon Amo without bail.
The statement says Garzon must appear before court once a week and is forbidden to leave Spain without permission.
Garzon was driving the train carrying 218 passenger in eight cars that hurtled far over the 80-kph (50-mph) speed limit into a high-risk curve on Wednesday evening, tumbling off the tracks and slamming into a concrete wall.
US says Israeli-Palestinian talks to start Monday
JERUSALEM (AP) — The U.S. has announced the resumption of Israeli-Palestinian talks following years of stalemate, after Israel's Cabinet agreed to release 104 Palestinian prisoners convicted of deadly attacks.
The return to direct contacts between the sides gave Secretary of State John Kerry his first concrete achievement after months of shuttle diplomacy.
The U.S. says preliminary talks would begin Monday, but it remains unclear whether they will lead to a formal resumption of peace talks that broke down in 2008.
Despite a return to the table, neither side appears upbeat. Each has blamed the other for the lack of success in 20 years of negotiations interrupted by bouts of violence.
Earlier Sunday, the Israeli Cabinet voted 13-7, with two abstentions, to approve in principle the release of 104 Palestinian prisoners. The release is a key part of the Kerry-brokered deal to restart peace talks.
The State Department said Kerry called Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas after the Cabinet vote and invited them to send teams to Washington.
UPDATE: New Zealand says no evidence it spied on reporter
WELLINGTON, New Zealand (AP) — New Zealand's acting defense force chief says there's no evidence it unlawfully spied on a journalist in Afghanistan.
The statement came in response to a report in the Sunday Star-Times newspaper that the military collected phone metadata to spy on journalist Jon Stephenson, who was freelancing for U.S. news organization McClatchy. The paper claimed the military became unhappy at Stephenson's reporting on how it treated Afghan prisoners.
Major General Tim Keating said Monday the military officers responsible for operations in Afghanistan has assured him that there had been no unlawful monitoring of Stephenson by New Zealand or foreign spy agencies.
New Zealand is a member of the Five Eyes intelligence-sharing alliance that also includes the U.S., Britain, Australia and Canada.
Stephenson was a freelancer for McClatchy last year.
Tour bus flips over in wash amid Ariz. rain storm
KINGMAN, Ariz. (AP) — No one was injured when a Las Vegas-bound tour bus carrying 33 people was swept away by floodwaters in northern Arizona on Sunday and turned on its side as it tried to cross a wash amid heavy rains.
Fire officials say the bus was pushed down the wash for an estimated 300 yards before it turned on its side around 1:50 p.m. local time near Kingman.
People inside the bus, which had left the Grand Canyon Skywalk glass bridge, climbed out the driver's side windows and walked onto the shore.
The crash happened as the area was hit with a second day of heavy rain.
Kingman is near the Arizona-Nevada stateline and about 100 miles southeast of Las Vegas.
NORTH CAROLINA FLOODING
2 found dead in rain-swollen North Carolina creek
COLLETTSVILLE, N.C. (AP) — Searchers in western North Carolina have the body of a 48-year-old man who was swept away along with a 10-year-old girl while swimming in a rain-swollen creek.
Caldwell County officials say Juan Alberdi of Huntersville was found Sunday along Wilson Creek nearly 100 miles north of Charlotte. He and a friend brought their children to the Appalachian foothills creek on Saturday.
Officials say Alberdi and 10-year-old Delilah Lovett of Charlotte were swept away in the swift currents immediately after entering the creek.
Officials in neighboring Catawba County say seven homes and three businesses suffered major damage and more than two dozen roads are closed or impassible due to standing water or flood damage.
Parts of Catawba, Lincoln and Cleveland received up to a foot of rain Saturday.
Mexico's navy vice-admiral killed in ambush
MORELIA, Mexico (AP) — Mexican authorities say gunmen have ambushed and killed a high-ranking navy official and the officer escorting him.
Prosecutors in the western state of Michoacan say Sunday's attack on Vice Adm. Carlos Miguel Salazar happened on a dirt road near the town of Churintzio.
Prosecutors spokesman Alejandro Arellano says the commander's driver apparently took the dirt road because the main highway had been closed. He says an officer serving as the admiral's bodyguard was also killed. He adds that a woman and man were injured.
Navy spokesman Jorge Vazquez says only that two members of the force have died but hasn't released their names.
Since Tuesday, gunmen apparently working for the Knights Templar cartel have been staging a series of attacks on federal police convoys, killing at least four officers.
Pope Francis' weeklong trip to Brazil ends
RIO DE JANEIRO (AP) — Pope Francis has taken off from Rio de Janeiro's international airport, ending a weeklong visit to Brazil that drew an estimated 3 million people onto the sands of Copacabana beach on his final day.
The trip marked the first international foray for the Argentine-born pontiff and his first voyage back to his home continent since becoming pope in March.
The visit was hailed as a success by church officials, pilgrims and the faithful in the world's largest Catholic country, although it was marked by major organizational snags.
Francis' schedule Sunday included a Mass attended by millions and meetings with regional clergy and thousands of volunteers.
The pope's return to Italy marked the end of the World Youth Day, a gathering that will next take place in Krakow, Poland, in 2016.
US gas prices up 8 cents over past 2 weeks
CAMARILLO, Calif. (AP) — The average U.S. price of a gallon of gasoline has jumped eight cents over the past two weeks.
The Lundberg Survey of fuel prices released Sunday says the price of a gallon of regular is $3.67. Midgrade costs an average of $3.85 a gallon, and premium is $3.99.
Diesel was up four cents at $3.93 gallon.
Of the cities surveyed in the Lower 48 states, Charleston, S.C., has the nation's lowest average price for gas at $3.34. Chicago has the highest at $4.10.
In California, the lowest average price was $3.83 in Sacramento. The highest was in Los Angeles at $4.04. The average statewide for a gallon of regular was $3.97, an increase of two cents.
Created: Mon, 29 Jul 2013 01:15:19 EST
Updated: Mon, 29 Jul 2013 01:15:19 EST