Not one, but TWO ill- fated cruises over the weekend--
This luxury liner caught fire just off Tahiti.
And dozens of people become sick on a Carnival cruise ship.
Plus, the holiday weekend is extended for students in Craig County.
We'll tell you why, coming up.
Dry now but we could see some changes by midweek...I'll have your forecast....
News 7 at Noon starts right now...
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Heating problems continue to disrupt instruction in the Craig County public schools.
Again this morning, Craig County students were sent home early because of malfunctioning equipment.
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During the last two weeks, students missed two days of classes and were sent home early on a third.
Problems with two new boilers, and a back-up were to blame for those dismissals. Today, officials said heat was not reaching the high school.
Because elementary, middle and high school students ride the busses together, all of the county's students were dismissed at 11:15 this morning.
Heating problems at another area school sent more students home early. George Washington High School's main campus in Danville dismissed students at 10:00 AM.
Smokers are now paying more for their cigarettes in Salem.
The city's new tobacco tax kicked in yesterday.
The extra fifteen cents per pack will go towards paying for improvements at Andrew Lewis Middle School.
Some merchants were worried smokers would give their business to Roanoke County where the charter prevents the imposition of a cigarette tax.
But at least one convenience store has yet to notice a drop in business.
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[IN Q=They haven't complained...]
[SUPER=01-Billy Kirk/Amoco Food Shop;]
((BILLY KIRK/AMOCO FOOD SHOP: THEY HAVEN'T COMPLAINED OR NOTHIN'. JUST REGULAR ROUTINE. NOBODY KNOWS YET BECAUSE IT'S STILL TOO EARLY.))
[OUT Q=it's still too early.]
Smokers aren't the only ones who'll help pay for improvements to the school.
Salem also doubled the car decal tax, imposed a three dollar cell phone tax and boosted the lodging tax from five to seven percent.
A senior at Washington and Lee University was killed in a traffic accident on I-81 last night.
Twenty-two year old Cullum Owings, Junior was on his way back to school along with his younger brother.
Pierce Owings is a freshman at W-and-L.
They're from Atlanta.
State Police say the Lexus they were riding in changed lanes amid stop-and-go traffic around 10:15 last night, when a speeding tractor trailer struck the Lexus from behind near the Lexington exit.
Cullum Owings was pronounced dead at the scene.
Pierce Owings was apparently UN-injured.
Authorities are considering reckless driving charges against the truck driver.
U-N weapons inspectors began a fifth straight day of work in Iraq today.
Among the information they hope to gather, whether Iraq still has the long- range Scud missiles it used during the Gulf War.
Mark Phillips has the latest.
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[IN Q=Today, through]
[SUPER=03-Baghdad, Iraq; :00]
[SUPER=01-Mark Phillips/CBS News; 1:15]
[OUT Q=Phillips, CBS News, Baghdad.]
((Today through an early morning mist, the UN inspectors headed for a
military industrial complex in Baghdad, but the fog around Iraq's
forbidden weapons programs is not so easily penetrated.
At one point the UN seemed to be lost, appearing to ask the Iraqui
officials who accompanied them for directions, perhaps compromising the
surprise nature of this inspection.
The target was the Karamah factory where the previous inspection effort
here determined Iraq was working on illegally extending the range of
their scud missiles..
Iraq is only permitted to have short range missilies with a 90 miles
but they are known to have been building missiles that can reach far
beyond that, and that can hit targets in Israel, Saudi Arabia and other
The UN thinks that about 20 of the long range missiles, known to have
been in Iraq's arsenal remain unaccounted for,
That might put the proposed US command center in the small sheikh
kingdom of Qatar within range.
(on cam close-no text)
Mark Phillips, CBS News, Baghdad.
A farmer in Kenya MAY have been the last person to speak to a pair of suicide bombers before they blew up an Israeli- owned hotel last Thursday.
The farmer says the two men appeared to be of Arabic descent.
They told him that they were waiting for a friend, and then drove away.
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[IN Q=After about 15]
((AFTER FIFTEEN TO TWENTY MINUTES, WE HEARD SOMETHING SHAKING, SHAKING, AND THEN ......'BBOOOAHH' (BLAST). WE RAN, COMING TO OUR HOUSE, SEARCHING FOR OUR CHILDREN." ))
[SUPER=01-Khamisi Haro/Kenyan Farmer;]
[OUT Q=for our children.]
Police have confirmed that nine Kenyans and three Israelis were
killed in the hotel attack, and they're still trying to identify another body.
Authorities say it's not clear exactly how many bombers were involved.
A cruise through the French Polynesian Islands proved less than relaxing for passengers aboard a ship that caught fire yesterday.
Authorities say 127 passengers, including many Americans, were safely evacuated from the luxury liner, "Wind Song".
Seattle-based Windstar Cruises says the cause of the engine room fire is still un-known, and local government leaders have ruled out a terrorist attack.
Meanwhile, passengers say they're grateful to those who rescued them.
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[IN Q=Our lifeboat wouldn't]
((OUR LIFEBOAT WOULDN'T RELEASE. WE ALMOST TIPPED OVER. THEY JUMPED OUT. THEY GOT IT LOOSE FINALLY. BUT EVERYBODY WAS OK."))
[OUT Q=everybody was okay.]
The ship was headed for Bora Bora when the fire started.
A Windstar official says passengers will be put up at an island
hotel and arrangements will be made for their return home.
[WIPE WIPE WIPE]
[WIPE WIPE WIPE]
It wasn't much of a holiday for dozens of passengers aboard a Carnival cruise ship either.
This morning, the "Fascination" returned to a Miami port from a three- day cruise after 86 people came down with a stomach virus.
Health officials will try to determine if the illness is the same Norwalk- type virus that's plagued other cruise ships in recent weeks-- including Holland America's ship "Amsterdam" and Disney's "Magic".
((TOSS TO Leo))
[SS=NONE]LEO IN WX-CENTER
(LEO TOSS BACK to Kim)
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An argument leads to gunfire, and a victim is in critical condition. The details are still ahead on News 7 at Noon.
And what happens to drunk drivers when they're booked and brought to court. A new study suggests that a lot of them are back behind the wheel.
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A Waynesboro man is in custody for a Sunday shooting in Nelson County.
Officials say it followed an argument at the victim's home.
Deputies were called to Virginia Lane in Nellysford, where they found a 22 year old man who'd been shot with a small caliber handgun.
At last check, the victim's name had not been released.
He's in critical condition at the U-V-A Medical Center in Charlottesville.
33- year- old Alfred Eugene Allen is charged with malicious wounding.
A major road construction project in downtown Danville is on schedule .. and should be completed by March.
Actually, it's a bridge project. Once finished, the Main Street bridge will accommodate all northbound and southbound traffic until the current Main Street bridge is re-furbished.
Both bridges should then be open for traffic by the spring of 2004.
The project is costing more than 14 million dollars.
There's already plenty of history among the streets, the buildings, and the cemeteries of Lexington, and now the city is preparing to make a little NEW history of sorts, when it hosts a Hollywood premiere.
More than a year ago, the campuses of V-M-I and Washington and Lee were used as backdrops for several scenes in the civil war movie "Gods and Generals."
It's a prequel to the movie "Gettsyburg."
The film is set to open in February, but not before a big premiere in the city of Lexington.
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[IN Q=We're going to have]
((DON HASFURTHER/LEXINGTON DOWNTOWN DEVELOPMENT ASSOCIATION: WE'RE GOING TO HAVE THE DIRECTOR, THE ACTOR, THE ACTRESSES OF GODS AND GENERALS HERE FOR THE PREMIERE. WE PLAN TO MAKE A BIG EVENT OUT OF IT. IT WILL BE A PROMOTIONAL EVENT AS WELL AS SUPPORTING OUR DOWNTOWN MUSEUMS AND OTHER NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATIONS, JUST GOING TO BE ONE WONDERFUL EVENING.))
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[OUT Q=wonderful evening]
That evening will be open to the public and is set for February 13th.
City leaders are still trying to pick a location to show the premiere.
December is the 20th anniversary of National Drunk and Drugged Driving Prevention Month.
Today a new study is being released that found nearly 40- percent of repeat drunk drivers ignore court orders and use loopholes to avoid prison sentences.
This survey is part of a more extensive study conducted by the Traffic Injury Research Foundation.
Joining us today is foundation president and C-E-O Herb Simpson.
[SUPER=01-Herb Simpson/Traffic Injury Research Foundation;]
(Where did the information come from for this survey?)
(What did this survey reveal about the legal system handles drunk drivers?)
[SUPER=04-Traffic Injury Research Foundation]
[RUNS= :45 MAX]
(What are some of the challenges that judges face when dealing with repeat offenders?)
(Why are drunk drivers sometimes able to avoid serving time?)
(What can be done to fine tune the system in order to keep drunk drivers from doing the same thing over and over again?
Thanks to both of you for joining us today.
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You could call it "Tanks" giving weekend near Danville. Still ahead, a high-power museum prepares to open up.
An in Europe, it's have "an ice" day .. where for a few days at least, you can see the world frozen in time.
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A major museum project is ready to open its doors .. and soon, it hopes to literally be going great guns.
As Justin McLeod reports, this museum is one big project.
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[IN Q=The wheels]
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[SUPER=01-William Gasser/Museum Director; :11]
[SUPER=01-Eddie Mathews/Museum Visitor; 1:27]
[OUT Q=JM, News 7, Pittsylvania County]
((((NAT SOUND OF TANK MOVING))
The wheels are in motion to turn the old Disston Plant near Danville into a museum like no other.
[IN Q=The entire collection]
((WILLIAM GASSER/MUSEUM DIRECTOR: THE ENTIRE COLLECTION IS THE MOST COMPREHENSIVE TANK AND CALVARY COLLECTION KNOWN IN THE WORLD.))
[OUT Q=in the world]
And what collection it is.
There are 97 tanks and other artillery pieces.
You'll also find thousands of artifacts from weapons, to original paintings, to more than 700 uniforms.
The oldest piece is this body armor from 1509.
There's even a memorial wall to honor soldiers, past and present, from the surrounding area.
[IN Q=This is here for one purpose]
((WILLIAM GASSER/MUSEUM DIRECTOR: THIS IS HERE FOR ONE PURPOSE TO HONOR THOSE WHO HAD TO ACTUALLY WORK WITH THIS AWESOME EQUIPMENT AND SOMETIMES AND FIGHT AND DIE IN IT.))
[OUT Q=die in it]
The public got its first look at the collection this weekend.
The museum opened its door for three days in advance of its spring grand opening.
[IN Q=It's been a bumpy road]
((JUSTIN McLEOD/REPORTING: IT'S BEEN A BUMPY ROAD GETTING TO THIS POINT. THE BIGGEST OBSTACLE WAS ACTUALLY MOVING AND TRANSPORTING THESE LARGE PIECES FROM THE OLD MUSEUM IN NEW YORK HERE TO DANVILLE. THE MUSEUM HAD TO RAISE NEARLY A MILLION DOLLARS TO MAKE THAT MOVE HAPPEN.))
[OUT Q=that move happen]
((NAT SOUND OF WILLIAM STRAIGHTEN OUT RUSSIAN SOLDIER AT 1:32:19))
The collection is now here but you will only see a quarter of it.
The museum still needs to raise nearly six million dollars to pay for future renovations including building display cases.
Future plans call for a battlefield outside where reenactments will take place.
That is still years away but the public likes what it sees so far.
[IN Q=I'll be back]
((EDDIE MATHEWS/VISITOR: I'LL BE BACK. I'LL COME BACK. I BELIEVE IT WILL HELP THE WHOLE AREA BECAUSE I DON'T KNOW OF ANYWHERE IN THE UNITED STATES OTHER THAN A MILITARY BASE YOU CAN SEE THIS STUFF.))
[OUT Q=see this stuff]
The museum believes nearly a hundred thousand people will see it in the first year.
And although it's been a wild ride so far the museum should be up and running by Memorial Day.
Justin McLeod, News 7, Pittsylvania County.))
A mixed day so far on Wall Street. At Noon,
the Dow was DOWN 18 points. Nasdaq was UP 16 points.
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This may sound familiar to Virginia Tech fans .. Michael Vick is leading one of the country's hottest teams.
Still ahead in sports, Vick makes a big run at the N-F-L's M-V-P trophy.
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Michael Vick wrote the latest exciting chapter in his young N-F-L career Sunday.
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Vick fumbled twice and was intercepted once, but he more than made up for the mistakes.
This 28 yard scamper late in the third quarter tied the game at 21.
But on to overtime.
On the Falcons' second play from scrimmage, Vick pops to the outside and then turns on the jets.
The spectacular run goes for 46 yards and the game winning score.
Vick ran for 173 yards and threw for 173 more as Atlanta knocks off
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Minnesota 30 to 24.
The Falcons have now gone 8 straight games without a loss, and Vick is putting together quite a bid for the MVP award.
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[SUPER=01-Dan Reeves/Falcons Head Coach; :27]
[OUT Q=got to the endzone."]
[WIPE to ENG!!]
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Among the wild and wacky moments in the NFL yesterday, how about Green Bay?
At the end of the first half between the Packers and the Bears, Brett Favre throws it up.
But the pass is picked off by Damon Moore.
Moore fumbles back to the Packers' Jim Flanagan.
Flanagan tries to lateral the ball, and the Bears' Roosevelt Williams ends up with the football on his way to the endzone.
Javon Walker makes the saving tackle.
The Packers went on to win it 30 to 20, clinching the NFC North.
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In Cleveland, the Carolina Panthers ended an eight game losing streak.
Rodney Peete threw this 24 yard TD to Wesley Walls.
Shayne Graham added two field goals as the Panthers beat the Browns 13 to 6.
And before we leave you this afternoon--
All you need are chainsaws, ice picks, and more than 600 tons of ice and snow to create some of the most recognizable structures in the world.
The exhibit is titled, "A World Tour Through Snow and Ice."
It's the collective work of 35 artists that carries spectators from the Vikings of the frozen north, through the Americas, to the Far East, and on to Japan.
Among the most notable sculptures, Lady Liberty herself.
The dazzling masterpieces are preserved in a giant tent, where the temperatures is kept at 14- degrees Fahrenheit.
FINAL LOOK AT THE WEATHER
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