Fiery train derailment spills ethanol into river
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — A large rock slide caused a fiery train derailment Thursday in eastern Kentucky that briefly trapped two crew members and caused a chemical leak into a river.
Two crew members of the CSX train were initially trapped in a flaming locomotive along the edge of the Big Sandy River before climbing out and waiting for firefighters to rescue them.
CSX said the train had 96 cars carrying ethanol and two cars loaded with rocks. Five railcars derailed, including four ethanol tanks and one sand car, CSX said later on Twitter. One locomotive and other cars caught fire.— AP
Official says Oklahoma will resume executions
OKLAHOMA CITY — Oklahoma plans to resume executing death row inmates, five years after lethal injections were put on hold following a series of deathchamber problems, state officials announced Thursday.
The state will resume executions using a threedrug lethal injection protocol, officials said, and a source for the drugs has been secured. The three drugs are midazolam, vecuronium bromide and potassium chloride.
Oklahoma executions were put on hold after a botched lethal injection in 2014 that left an inmate writhing on the gurney and drug mix-ups in 2015.— AP
Scientists say January was hottest ever recorded
WASHINGTON — Last month was the hottest January since scientists began keeping temperature records in 1880, U.S. government climate scientists said Thursday.
The global average land and ocean surface temperature in January was 2.05 degrees Fahrenheit above the average January temperatures for the 20th century because of the changing climate, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said.
"Things are warming dramatically," said University of Illinois climate scientist Don Wuebbles.— AP
Pentagon transfers $3.8 billion to fund border wall
WASHINGTON — The Trump administration is transferring $3.8 billion in recently passed military funding to finance construction of the president's U.S.-Mexico border wall.
Thursday's move by the Pentagon would transfer money from National Guard units, aircraft procurement and shipbuilding to anti-drug accounts that can finance wall construction.— AP
Federal judge named by LBJ is retiring at age 98
NEW YORK — A federal judge in New York City who was nominated by President Lyndon B. Johnson is retiring at age 98.
U.S. District Judge Jack Weinstein was known for favoring lenient sentences and rehabilitation. He was the longest-serving incumbent federal judge and spent nearly 53 years on the bench.
Weinstein, who was appointed in 1967, said he often pushed for the shortest prison sentences possible so people could try to build a better life. "We need to rule from a place of love, not hate," he told the New York Daily News.— AP
66,000 pot convictions dismissed in L.A. County
LOS ANGELES — Los Angeles County District Attorney Jackie Lacey on Thursday announced the dismissal of 66,000 marijuana convictions in the county, a move to undo decades of drug enforcement that disproportionately targeted people of color years after California voters legalized weed.
The top prosecutor this week filed a motion asking a judge to erase 62,000 felony convictions and 4,000 misdemeanor convictions.
— The Los Angeles Times