National briefs (9/9/12)
Share with others:
PITTSBURGH -- The United Steelworkers and ArcelorMittal USA announced Saturday a tentative agreement on a new three-year contract covering nearly 14,000 workers in eight states.
The union told members in an update posted on its website that they would be getting more details before a ratification vote, including dates and locations of informational meetings. A date for a ratification vote has not yet been set. Officials said the current contract, which expired Sept. 1, would be extended pending ratification.
The contract covers employees at 15 ArcelorMittal USA's flat carbon, long carbon and iron ore mining locations in Pennsylvania, West Virginia, Ohio, Illinois, Indiana, Minnesota, Louisiana and South Carolina. ArcelorMittal confirmed the tentative contract Saturday afternoon but provided no details.
TRAVERSE CITY, Mich. -- The U.S. and Canada renewed a 40-year-old Great Lakes environmental pact Friday, pledging stepped up efforts to reduce pollution, cleanse contaminated sites and prevent exotic species invasions.
The updated Great Lakes Water Quality Agreement binds both nations to continue a cleanup and restoration initiative begun when the freshwater seas were a symbol of ecological decay.
The pact calls for further action on problems that inspired the original agreement three years after the Cuyahoga River fire in 1969 and a second version of the agreement in 1987. It pledges to "restore and maintain the chemical, physical and biological integrity" of the five lakes and the portion of the St. Lawrence River on the U.S.-Canadian border.
OKLAHOMA CITY -- Fierce thunderstorms with strong winds tore through Oklahoma, killing a truck driver and a family whose mobile home was flipped into a creek.
One storm rolled in so fast, a couple in Nowata County had no time to reach a storm shelter on their property before wind picked up their mobile home, carried it about 100 yards and dropped the wreckage into a creek, sheriff's deputy Rick Harper said Saturday. The mobile home "basically disintegrated," he said, and the couple and their grandchild were killed. Their bodies were found in the water after a two-hour search.
The family's names have not been released, but Harper estimated the child was about 4 months old.
A Missouri truck driver also was killed when wind flipped his semi onto a cement barrier wall, trapping him inside for nearly three hours near Afton, the Oklahoma Highway Patrol reported. Jimmy King, 70, of Ash Grove, Mo., died at the scene of massive injuries, troopers said.
NEW YORK -- A tornado swept out of the sea and hit a beachfront neighborhood in New York City on Saturday, hurling debris in the air, knocking out power and startling residents who once thought of twisters as a Midwestern phenomenon.
Videos taken by bystanders showed a funnel cloud sucking up water, then sand, and then small pieces of buildings, as it moved through the Breezy Point section of the Rockaway peninsula in Queens.
Residents had advance notice. The National Weather Service had issued a tornado warning for Queens and Brooklyn at around 10:40 a.m. The storm took people by surprise anyway when it struck about 30 minutes later.
-- Compiled from news services
First Published September 9, 2012 12:00 am