Amtrak train derails on highway bridge in Washington state, several killed

Amtrak train derails on highway bridge in Washington state, several killedAmtrak passenger Chris Karnes told local news outlet KIRO 7 that passengers were forced to kick out train windows in order to escape, because emergency doors were not functioning properly following the derailment. The derailment occurred on the first day that Amtrak trains began using a new route between the cities of Tacoma and Olympia, part of a project to reduce travel time, according to an October news release from the state's transportation department. The new route takes trains along Interstate 5, eliminating a major choke point for passenger trains in Tacoma and allowing trains to reach speeds of 79 miles per hour (127 km per hour), the department has said.



U.S. appeals judge steps down amid harassment inquiry

U.S. appeals judge steps down amid harassment inquiry(Reuters) - Alex Kozinski, a renowned U.S. federal appeals court judge based in San Francisco, resigned on Monday after the court's chief judge initiated an inquiry into harassment accusations, Kozinski said in a statement. The U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals judge said he was retiring immediately to avoid being a distraction for the federal judiciary. The Washington Post, which on Monday first reported the retirement, said earlier this month that six women had come forward to accuse Kozinski, 67, of subjecting them to inappropriate sexual conduct or comments.



Weakening winds aid battle against colossal California wildfire

Weakening winds aid battle against colossal California wildfireCalifornia firefighters were helped overnight by weakening winds in their battle against a two-week-old deadly wildfire that has cost nearly $131 million and blackened a widening area about one-third the size of Rhode Island, officials said on Monday. The blaze and other area wildfires have been whipped up by strong and steady Santa Ana winds sweeping in from eastern California deserts.



More flights canceled after Atlanta airport's day without power

More flights canceled after Atlanta airport's day without powerMore than 400 planned flights to or from Atlanta were scrapped and another 86 were delayed, according to the FlightAware tracking service. The airport lost power on Sunday morning after what Georgia Power believes was an equipment failure and subsequent fire in an underground electrical facility. By then, miserable would-be passengers had posted pictures and videos that were widely shared online of their confinement inside planes stuck outside darkened terminals as boredom and hunger mounted.



As California fires blaze, homeowners fear losing insurance

As California fires blaze, homeowners fear losing insuranceMassive, out-of-season fires in northern and southern California are causing billions of dollars in claims and challenging expectations of when and where to expect blazes. State law gives insurers more leeway to drop coverage than to raise rates, and some are taking the opportunity, concerning California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones. Homes in the Sierra Nevada foothills were dropped after wildfires swept through the region in recent years, and some other Northern California homes also have been cut from rosters, Jones said.





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