Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Briefing

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

Briefing

Article excerpt

HIGH WINDS KEEP SHUTTLE OFF GROUND ANOTHER DAY

CAPE CANAVERAL -- For the second day in a row, gusts of nearly 25 mph forced space shuttle Atlantis and its astronauts to keep circling Earth yesterday instead of coming home.

The weather was no better at the backup landing site in Southern California, so Mission Control ordered the crew to spend a 13th day in orbit and aim for a touchdown this afternoon.

"Bottom line is we're waving off," Mission Control told commander Kenneth Cockrell. "We do have three sites for tomorrow, all of them have a 'go' forecast at this time."

Atlantis and its crew of five undocked from the international space station Friday after delivering and installing the $1.4 billion Destiny laboratory, and should have returned to Earth on Sunday.

But the crosswind at the landing strip was well above the 17 mph safety limit, a situation that recurred yesterday. Not only that, thick clouds began moving in yesterday, and NASA worried they might bring rain.

4 MISSING AFTER PLANE CRASHES OFF GEORGIA COAST

ATLANTA -- Four men returning home from the Daytona 500 auto race were missing after their plane crashed in the Atlantic Ocean off the Georgia coast, the Coast Guard reported yesterday.

The Beechcraft Bonanza was flying parallel to the coast when the Federal Aviation Administration lost radar contact at 8:17 p.m. Sunday. The Coast Guard said there was no distress call from the plane before it crashed.

Aboard the plane were pilot William Pritchett of Windsor, N.C., his brother, John Pritchett, of Chesapeake, Va., and Ray and Ken Chapman of Virginia Beach, Va., Coast Guard spokesman Dana Warr said.

Debris from the crash was found floating 25 miles from where officials think the plane hit the water, Warr said.

MAN THREW GRANDMOTHER OFF BUILDING, POLICE SAY

NEW YORK -- A man was arrested yesterday after allegedly pushing his 78-year-old grandmother to her death from the 21st-floor balcony of an apartment building, police said. …

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