Latest National News Briefs From A.P.
BAY AREA QUAKE
NEW: Magnitude-4.0 quake shakes San Francisco Bay Area
SAN FRANCISCO (AP) — Some people in the San Francisco Bay area were awakened by an earthquake, though there have been no damage reports.
A U.S. Geological Survey computer-generated report says the magnitude-4.0 quake struck at 5:33 a.m. Monday and was centered eight miles north of San Francisco in the El Cerrito area.
Bay Area Rapid Transit trains are delayed about 10 minutes because tracks had to be inspected.
San Francisco police Officer Aldie Esparza says the Office of Emergency Management hasn’t received any damage reports.
Esparza says police communications center employees described it as a light swaying motion, noting the building is on rollers.
Esparza was asleep at home and describes it as a sharp jolt that woke him up.
A California Highway Patrol dispatcher says the quake was felt throughout San Francisco.
UPDATE: Stocks open lower
NEW YORK (AP) — U.S. stocks are opening lower on worries over slowing economic growth in China and concern that a Greek bond exchange deal may not be going according to plan.
The Dow fell 35 points to 12,942 at the opening of trading.
The broader S&P 500 is down 4 at 1,365. The Nasdaq is down 8 points at 2,967.
On Monday, China’s premier Wen Jiabao lowered the economy’s growth target to 7.5 percent from 8 percent, where it has stood for years.
Further weighing on the market are worries that there aren’t enough private investors participating in Greece’s bond swap, which could worsen the European debt crisis. Results are due late Thursday.
Iran’s Supreme Court orders retrial of ex-Marine
TEHRAN, Iran (AP) — An Iranian semiofficial news agency reports that the country’s Supreme Court has ordered the retrial of an ex-Marine who was sentenced to death for working for the CIA.
The Monday report by ISNA quotes state prosecutor as saying the Supreme Court has found shortcomings in the case and sent it for review by another court.
In January an Iranian court sentenced Arizona-born Amir Hekmati to death for allegedly being a CIA spy.
It was the first time an American citizen has been sentenced to death in Iran since the 1979 Islamic Revolution.
Obama to appeal for restraint from Israel
UNDATED (AP) — President Barack Obama is expected to ask Israel’s prime minister for restraint against Iran when Benjamin Netanyahu visits the White House today.
Fears are growing that Israel may soon strike Iran’s nuclear facilities.
Meanwhile, the U.N.’s nuclear agency is meeting in Vienna today to discuss Iran.
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (AP) — An Indiana man says he held hands and prayed with a family of five, just before they were killed in Friday’s tornado in New Pekin.
Jason Miller tells NBC’s “Today” show from his hospital bed that he took 15-month-old Angel Babcock and her family into his home right before the tornado that sucked all of them into the air.
The toddler was found alive in a field, but died two days later.
The death toll from Friday’s storms stands at 39.
Snow has fallen today in some of the same areas already staggered by last week’s deadly tornadoes. Forecasters say they expect a quick warm-up after the storms move away today.
3 NC kids survive tornado pulling them from home
CHARLOTTE, N.C. (AP) — A North Carolina family says three children were ripped from their beds by a tornado, throwing one about 100 feet away along a fence lining a highway. All have been released from hospitals and are back with relatives.
Latonya Stevens says her 7-year-old son Jamal was sucked from his room as a tornado tore apart the family home’s second floor where he slept. It was one of nearly 200 homes damaged by the storm in the Charlotte area.
A neighbor found Jamal about 100 feet away, tossed to the far side of a fence along Interstate 485.
His 3-year-old sister Amber and 4-year-old Ayanna were released from a hospital on Sunday. Amber was found in her home’s yard under some debris. Ayanna landed in a neighbor’s yard.
Road crews plowing snow in northeast Ky.
FLEMINGSBURG, Ky. (AP) — Kentucky transportation officials say snowplows are operating on 12-hour shifts to clear roads in the northeast part of the commonwealth.
Kentucky Transportation Cabinet spokesman Allen Blair said in a news release Monday morning that highways were partly to mostly snow-covered in Bath, Boyd, Carter, Elliott, Fleming, Greenup, Lewis, Mason, Nicholas and Rowan counties. Crews were plowing and salting state roads.
The transportation cabinet cautions against using cruise control on slippery roads and notes more distance is needed to stop on slick highways.
The National Weather Service had issued a winter weather advisory for much of central, northern and eastern Kentucky. Several schools around the state were closed or delayed classes.