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Flash flooding in Pittsburgh kills 3 as cars are swallowed

PITTSBURGH

flash flooding kills 3 as cars are swallowed

A pair of storms that pounded Pittsburgh on Friday cut electricity to hospitals and universities and submerged more than a dozen vehicles in a flash flood that killed a woman and two children, and left another person presumed dead. Officials said drivers were overwhelmed as water rose up to 9 feet in some places. Rescue crews used inflatable boats to reach marooned drivers, though some swam to safety on their own. The mother and two children were unable to escape their vehicle, which was completely submerged and pinned to a tree, Pittsburgh public safety director Michael Huss said at a news conference. A 70-year-old woman was missing.

SAN DIEGO

Doctor accused of peddling 1M pain pills

A doctor who wrote prescriptions for nearly a million tablets of the powerful painkiller hydrocodone last year was arrested along with a pharmacy manager and 13 others in a conspiracy to smuggle prescription drugs from California to Mexico, authorities said Friday. The unusual operation by Dr. Tyron Reece, 71, of Inglewood, Calif., and the others sent a flood of opiates to Tijuana pharmacies in exchange for bundles of cash that were sneaked back into the United States. American addicts were able to buy the pills over the counter on jaunts across the border from San Diego, investigators told the Associated Press.

INDIANAPOLIS

6th person dies from injuries at state fair

A 22-year-old college student died Friday from injuries suffered when a strong wind gust toppled a stage at the Indiana State Fair on Aug. 13.

Jennifer Haskell was entering her senior year at Ball State University in Muncie, where she was studying sports medicine, her uncle Mike Whited said in announcing her death.

Also Friday, lawsuits were filed on behalf of two other victims. The lawsuits name the fair, the state and companies that put on the show. More are expected.

BELGIUM

Death toll at music festival rises to five

The death toll from a fierce thunderstorm that mangled tents and downed trees and scaffolding at an open-air music festival in Hasselt, Belgium, climbed to five, officials said Friday.

About 140 were injured, 10 of them seriously, Hasselt Mayor Hilde Claes said. The storm shredded the annual Pukkelpop outdoor rock festival Thursday evening. Officials said the dead were all Belgians, ranging in age from 15 to 59. They had not been identified.

Elsewhere

MIAMI: Tropical Storm Harvey gained strength in the Atlantic on Friday and was threatening to bring several inches of rain to parts of Central America, the National Hurricane Center said.

Norway: Relatives of victims killed on the Norwegian island of Utoya last month traveled to the site of the massacre for the first time Friday and were able to walk through their loved ones' last moments.

North Korea: The government said Friday that it had agreed to talks with the United States on searching for and returning the remains of American soldiers killed during the Korean War in the early 1950s.

Belarus: The government said Friday that is had suspended an effort to fully give up its Soviet-era stockpile of highly enriched uranium in response to U.S. sanctions. The United States and the European Union introduced sanctions against the government for its crackdown on the political opposition.

Times wires

Flash flooding in Pittsburgh kills 3 as cars are swallowed 08/20/11 [Last modified: Saturday, August 20, 2011 1:06am]

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