National Briefs: Tracy Morgan recovering

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TRENTON, N.J. -- Tracy Morgan was recovering Sunday, but was expected to remain hospitalized for several weeks after having surgery on a broken leg suffered in a deadly chain-reaction crash on the New Jersey Turnpike that left two others critically injured and another man dead.

The 45-year-old actor and comedian, a former "Saturday Night Live" and "30 Rock" cast member, remained in critical condition but was "more responsive" Sunday after having surgery for a broken leg, spokesman Lewis Kay said.

A Wal-Mart truck driver from Georgia was charged with death by auto and four counts of assault by auto. Authorities said 35-year-old Kevin Roper of Jonesboro apparently failed to slow for traffic ahead early Saturday in Cranbury Township and swerved at the last minute to avoid a crash. Instead, his big rig smashed into the back of Mr. Morgan's chauffeured Mercedes limo bus, killing comedian James "Jimmy Mack" McNair, authorities said.

Mr. Roper, accompanied by his attorney, turned himself in to state police. He was released on $50,000 bail Saturday night and has been placed on administrative leave, Wal-Mart spokesman David Tovar said Sunday.

Gas prices hold steady

CAMARILLO, Calif. -- A survey says the average price of a gallon of regular gasoline in the U.S. is holding steady, rising 3 ½ cents over the past three weeks to $3.69.

Industry analyst Trilby Lundberg said Sunday that crude oil prices are little changed, and strong refinery output has quenched higher demand. She anticipates minor price declines ahead.

The survey taken Friday shows the average price for a gallon of midgrade gas was $3.88 and the average price for a gallon of premium was $4.03. Diesel averaged $3.96 a gallon.

Protective blanket created

OKLAHOMA CITY -- An Oklahoma company has created a protective blanket that developers say could give children a better chance of surviving debris from a tornado -- or bullets from a 9 mm handgun.

The Bodyguard Blanket, made by ProTecht, is a bulletproof pad designed to protect students during disasters at school. The 5/16-inch thick rectangle features backpack-like straps that allow users to put it on, and then duck and cover.

Cedar Point closed

SANDUSKY, Ohio -- Ohio's most popular amusement park was closed through the weekend after a water main break in the city of Sandusky disrupted its primary water supply, putting a damper on thousands of summer vacations.

Park officials closed Cedar Point and three hotels on its northern Ohio property on a picture-perfect Saturday and didn't expect to reopen until Monday, saying a lack of reliable water posed a safety risk.

Casey Kasem still critical

NEW YORK -- Casey Kasem, host of the "American Top 40" countdown for four decades, remained in critical condition at a Washington state hospital Sunday and was being treated for an infected bedsore, a hospital spokesman said.

His medical care and visitor access has been at the center of a legal tussle between the children from his first marriage -- Kerri, Julie and Mike -- and his second wife, Jean Kasem, with whom he has one child, Liberty.

A Washington state judge ruled Friday that Mr. Kasem's care would be decided by his daughter Kerri, and not her stepmother.

-- Compiled from news services



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