Around the region

Published: Saturday, April 1, 2006 at 6:01 a.m.
Last Modified: Friday, March 31, 2006 at 11:19 p.m.

Motorists pull woman from her burning SUV

A Tallahassee woman was rescued from her burning SUV by passing motorists Thursday evening after the vehicle flipped over along Interstate 10 in Suwannee County.
At 7:15 p.m., Harmony Rose Henry, 24, was driving east on I-10 a few miles west of Live Oak when the vehicle veered onto the grassy median and flipped over several times and caught on fire, the FHP said.
Unidentified passersby quickly pulled the woman from her burning SUV in the nick of time, troopers said.
Henry's injuries were minor, and she was transported to Shands at Live Oak.
Damage to her 1998 Toyota is estimated to be $20,000.
- Megan V. Winslow

Fire burns bedroom of UF police official

No one was injured in an early morning fire that destroyed a bedroom in the home of Lt. Joe Sharkey, University of Florida Police Department spokesman.
Sharkey was on his way to work when he heard a smoke detector sound about 6 a.m., according to a Gainesville Fire Rescue report.
After re-entering the home, located on NW 8th Court, Sharkey discovered his daughter's bedroom was full of smoke and the bed, clothing and a wall were in flames.
Sharkey's daughter was not home at the time of the fire.
Sharkey evacuated his wife and pet cat and then fought the fire with a garden hose through an exterior window. GFR officials later extinguished the fire.
The fire likely resulted from an electrical problem that ignited clothing under a bunk bed.
Investigators believe the home sustained about $25,000 of damage.
- Megan V. Winslow

Spring Arts Festival is today and Sunday

The 37th annual Santa Fe Community College Spring Arts Festival runs today from 9 a.m. to 5:30 p.m. and Sunday from 1 to 5:30 p.m.
Approximately 250 artists from 26 states will exhibit and sell their work in Downtown Gainesville along NE 1st Street, between NE 2nd and NE 8th avenues.
For entertainment, visit the Center Stage on the corner of NE 6th Avenue and NE 1st Street, and the Garden Stage at the Thomas Center, 302 NE 6th Ave. Free artistic diversions for children are available at the Thomas Center.
Admission is free but leave your pets and bicycles at home.
- Megan V. Winslow

Hospital's sleep center hosting an open house

With the return to Daylight Saving Time at 2 a.m. Sunday, everyone will miss out on an hour of sleep. For those who frequently find sleep elusive, North Florida Regional Medical Center offers some answers.
The hospital's sleep center will host an open house Monday from 8 a.m. to 6 p.m. and Tuesday from 8 to 5.
Staff will be on hand to answer questions about sleep problems and the center will be open for tours. It is located on the second floor of the Women's Center of NFRMC, 6500 Newberry Road.
"Sleep is as important as diet and exercise, only easier," says Peter McCullagh, the sleep center's director.
- Diane Chun

Amendment to limit local taxing, spending

Legislation that would put additional limits on local government spending and taxing powers received approval Friday from the House Finance & Tax Committee.
The panel voted 6-2 to introduce a proposed state constitutional amendment that would let the Legislature set local spending limits tied to growth in Floridians' personal income.
It would allow those limits to be exceeded only if the governor declares a state of emergency, through a local referendum or by a supermajority vote of a city or county governing body. A supermajority is something more than 51 percent.
The committee later voted 4-1 to propose a bill that would limit local government property tax rate increases to the growth in the Consumer Price Index plus 3 percent.
Representatives of city and county governments spoke against both measures, complaining that they would shift authority from local officials to Tallahassee.
Robert McKee, lobbyist for the Florida Association of Counties, said the spending limit fails to account for vast differences between local governments across the state.
- The Associated Press

Nuclear reactor at FPL plant shut down

One of two nuclear reactors at the Turkey Point power plant in Miami-Dade County was shut down Friday after some equipment damage was discovered during a routine inspection, Florida Power & Light officials said.
FPL, the state's largest electric utility, and the Nuclear Regulatory Commission declined to elaborate on the nature and the extent of the damage, citing security reasons.
The reactor had been shut down for a routine refueling.
- The Associated Press

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