Expecting snow to accumulate tomorrow night means V-DOT workers can expect to be putting in some O.T. tonight.
And tightening up the seat- belt laws is a prime topic of talk among lawmakers.
Tonight on News 7 Sports - the trade winds are blowing in the big leagues tonight.
Gordon creates a breeze of his own at Daytona.
and the 49ers fire successful coach Steve Mariucci after six years in the bay area.
This time around most of our viewers will be measuring snow, perhaps more so southside than the highlands. We'll explain in a moment.
News 7 at Six is next.
It's a familiar scene at V-DOT this winter...
As workers there get ready for another snowstorm headed our way.
Good evening, I'm Keith Humphry.
Shannon is off tonight.
[SS=Winter Storm Watch]
A Winter Storm Watch is in effect for much of the viewing area.
The second major storm of the season appears ready to drop several inches of snow.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith & Robin/WXCenter]
For more on where it's headed and what we can expect, let's talk to meteorologist Robin Reed.
[SS=NONE]WEATHER CENTER Position #1
(Robin tosses to Myranda)
[DOUBLE BOXES=Robin & Myranda/Microwave]
(ROBIN TOSSES TO MYRANDA)
Workers at V-DOT are hoping to get a jumpstart on the storm.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Myranda & Robin/Microwave;]
New River Valley Bureau Chief Myranda Stephens spoke with officials today to find out what they're doing to prepare for the snow.
Robin, for them, it's never too early to start preparing for winter weather.
And they hope getting their trucks and equipment ready TONIGHT, will put them in better shape TOMORROW.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Dale Stanzel/V-DOT; :00]
[OUT Q=EXPECT THIS TIME OF THE YEAR ]
((DALE STANZEL/VDOT: WHAT WILL DO THIS EVENING IS BRING IN WHAT WE CALL A FULL CREW OF MAINTENANCE EMPLOYEES TONIGHT AT MIDNIGHT, TO ACTUALLY SERVICE EQUIPMENT. SO THEY WON'T ACTUALLY BE DOING ANY SNOW REMOVAL BUT THEY'LL BE SERVICING EQUIPMENT, REPAIRING EQUIPMENT, GETTING READY FOR THE SNOW TOMORROW EVENING 33:21))
Stanzel says his department had a full crew out last night in all three counties that it covers...those being Montgomery, Giles and Pulaski.
Those areas saw about one to three inches of snow, which resulted in a few school delays this morning.
But, even though these last few snowstorms have been keeping V-DOT workers busier than usual during this time of year, Stanzel says this was considered the norm up until three years ago.
((AND THEN WE HAD TWO WARM WINTERS AND WE DIDN'T HAVE THE SNOW, AND NOW IT'S KIND OF GETTING BACK TO THE USUAL DECEMBER, JANUARY, FEBRUARY WINTER. AND THIS IS WHAT WE EXPECT THIS TIME OF THE YEAR 35:00))))
And just how V-DOT is getting ready for the snow.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Myranda & Keith]
Drivers may want to do some preparing of their own.
As we know, V-DOT can only do so much to keep people safe out on the roads.
That snow earlier in the week is still causing some problems for one school system.
[TAKE SCHOOLTOUCH FS]
Classes in Tazewell County will begin two hours late tomorrow.
Only seventy percent of Virginians wear their seat belts.
And according to supporters of a primary seat belt bill, the only way to increase that number is to change Virginia's law.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith & Meghan/ State Microwave]
Meghan Muldoon has been following the debate on this issue.
She joins us now from the State Capitol.
Advocates of primary seat belt laws say they've been proven to save lives and money.
[LIVE=Meghan Full/State Microwave]
but critics of the law say it comes with a cost....loss of individual freedom.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=IN VIRGINIA POLICE CAN]
[SUPER=01-Sen. Ken Stolle/(R) Va. Beach; :35]
[SUPER=01-Del. Morgan Griffith/(R) Salem; :54]
[SUPER=01-Sen. Emmett Hanger/(R) Augusta Co.; 1:02]
[OUT Q=STUPID IF WE WANT TO.]
(( [NAT sound of sirens]
In Virginia, police can ticket a driver for not wearing a seat belt ONLY after the person has been stopped for another violation.
Many in Richmond, including Governor Warner, want to change that so drivers failing to wear a seat belt can be pulled over for that reason alone.
[IN Q=it's time to pass]
((GOVERNOR MARK WARNER: IT'S TIME TO PASS A PRIMARY SEAT BELT LAW THAT WILL SAVE LIVES.))
[OUT Q=will save lives.]
Advocates cite data showing primary seat belt laws significantly increase the use of seat belts.
And they say more than one-fourth of Virginians who lost their lives to crashes in 2001, would have survived had they buckled up.
[IN Q=IF YOU JUST GO FROM]
((SENATOR KEN STOLLE/(R) VA. BEACH: IF YOU JUST GO FROM A SECONDARY SEAT BELT LAW TO A PRIMARY, YOU'LL SAVE MORE LIVES THAN ANY OTHER THING WE DO UP HERE.))
[OUT Q=DO UP HERE.]
But many legislators say Virginians should decide for themselves whether or not to buckle up.
Forcing them to do so, they say, is just another example of an over-reaching government.
[IN Q=THERE'S CERTAIN DIETS]
[OUT Q=WHERE DO YOU DRAW THE LINE.]
[IN Q=IN MANY INSTANCES]
((SENATOR EMMETT HANGER/(R) LEXINGTON: IN MANY INSTANCES WE HAVE TO RETAIN THE RIGHT UNDER THE FREEDOMS THAT WE EXERCISE IN THE COMMONWEALTH AND THIS COUNTRY TO BE STUPID IF WE WANT TO.))
[OUT Q=IF WE WANT TO.]))
[LIVE=Meghan Full/State microwave]
Eighteen states and the District of Columbia already have primary seat belt laws on their books.
[DOUBLE BOXES=Keith & Meghan/State microwave]
And even though the governor is supporting it, may not be the year.
Henry County authorities are asking for help in locating a missing woman.
[*TAKE SNIPES PHOTO FS*]
54-year-old Sarah Ann Snipes of Martinsville was last seen on January 8th, walking away from her home.
She was on her way to visit a friend.
Her daughter reported her missing.
Authorities say Snipes requires medication for seizures.
[*TAKE HENRY CO. SHERIFF'S DEPT. PINNACLE FS*]
If you've seen her, you can call the Henry County Sheriff's Department at 276 - 638 - 8751.
A fifth person has been charged in the murder of a Henry County man last August.
Authorities are still looking for 33-year-old Michael Jason Brown, also known as "English."
Investigators say he was one of five men involved in the murder of 22-year-old Michael Lanell Angelo Carter.
Carter was found shot to death in the home of an acquaintance on August 23rd.
There's a one-thousand-dollar reward for information leading to Brown's arrest.
Striking G-E workers remember a co-worker killed on the picket line.
That's still ahead on News 7 at Six.
Plus see how a special school is helping kids deal with autism.
A 1-point-six million dollar lawsuit against a Roanoke nursing home was settled today without a jury verdict.
Instead, the family of Marie Ayers accepted an undisclosed settlement.
The 82-year old nursing home resident died after a temporary nurse gave her a dozen or more medications meant for her roommate.
Brandon Oaks called her doctor soon after the mistake was discovered. Doctor Bharat Patel told the nursing home to monitor Ms Ayers, but they didn't call him again until midnight.
(///// SOT /////)
[IN Q=The issue is]
((THE ISSUE IS: DID HER CONDITION DETERIORATE? AND THE EVIDENCE IS IN DISPUTE ON THAT. AND THEN WHETHER THINGS HAPPENED LATER IN THE DAY THAT SHOULD HAVE BEEN BROUGHT TO DR. PATEL'S ATTENTION. THAT'S WHAT A LOT OF THE FIGHT WAS GOING TO BE ABOUT IN COURT.))
[SUPER=01-Walt Peake/Brandon Oaks' Attorney]
[OUT Q=about in court.]
Peake says the mix-up was an aberration, and he says Ms Ayer's death 16 hours later may well have been unrelated.
The Ayers family believes they would never have known what happened, if it hadn't been for Renee Lilly. She's the "sitter" who realized the nurse had mistaken Ms Ayers for her roommate and that Ayers had been given the wrong medication.
Local General Electric workers are remembering a fellow union member on the picket line today.
They observed a moment of silence to honor the woman killed yesterday in Louisville, Kentucky while participating in the strike effort.
She was hit by a police car in a dimly lit area.
Local workers are also wearing black arm bands and holding signs with black tape to show solidarity.
More than 15-thousand G-E union workers around the country, including 400 from Salem, are striking for affordable health care.
The strike ends tonight at 11.
National union contract negotiations start in May. Health care cost is expected to be a major issue.
Local union officials say workers are prepared for another strike but that they would prefer to negotiate with the company.
It turns out that taxpayer money WILL help pay for the Lynchburg mayor's trip to France... just not the way most people expected.
Several city council members were upset over a plan to spend up to 500 dollars to send Mayor Carl Hutcherson to Lynchburg's sister city Rueil Malmaison (ray mahl-may-ZONE).
The item was dropped at last night's council meeting after vice mayor Bert Dodson handed Hutcherson a check for 300 dollars.. money Dodson says is coming from his city council salary.
City attorney Walter Erwin said today that Dodson's gift does "not" violate any state or local ethical guidelines because Hutcherson is not a city employee and no influence or preferential treatment was being sought.
It was a glum day on Wall Street after Intel sparked concern about the semiconductor industry.
[TAKE DOW & NASDAQ PAGE]
The DOW dropped 119 points.
NASDAQ lost 22.
It is one of the few opportunities in our area for a specialized education for some special kids.
Richard Lesko takes us to a school for autistic children that's expanding to meet the growing need.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Wanda Taliaferro/Director of Programs; :29]
[OUT Q=RL, N7, Clifton Forge.]
(( At this school there are no large classes, and it's almost impossible to get lost in the crowd.
The Shenandoah Autism Center is a private, non-profit, state certified school that has found a home in Clifton Forge to help children with varying levels of autism.
What makes this program different is that for each child there is ONE teacher, and autistic children receive a specialized education based on their needs.
[SOT - 15:53:33]
[INQ=Children with autism...]
((WANDA TALIAFERRO/DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS; CHILDREN WITH AUTISM NEED THAT TYPE OF STRUCTURE TO KEEP THEM FOCUSED, THEY USUALLY HAVE SO MANY SENSORY ISSUES AND THEY ARE SO DISTRACTIBLE, THAT THEY NEED SOMEONE WITH THEM AT ALL TIMES.))
[OUTQ=with them at all times.]
Nationwide, a U.S. Department of Education report shows autism is growing at a rate of 10-to-17 percent per year.
Since moving from Lexington last August, the Shenandoah Autism Center has increased its enrollment to 9 students ranging from 2 years old to the mid-teens.
The program uses a behavior modification program specialized to each student's needs to help teach social interaction and communication skills.
Educators say it's important to start autistic children's education early, and graduate as many of them to the public school system as possible.
[SOT - 15:56:36]
[INQ=Older students that we've had...]
((WANDA TALIAFERRO/DIRECTOR OF PROGRAMS; OLDER STUDENTS THAT WE'VE HAD, PARENTS REALIZE THAT IT TAKES A WHILE, AND SOME STUDENTS MAY NEVER GET TO WHERE WE WOULD LIKE FOR THEM TO BE, BUT ALL STUDENTS CAN DO SOMETHING.))
[OUTQ=all students can do something.]
The school's directors would like to double the size of the program in the next few years, in hopes that autistic children born today can get a head start learning to live with their disorder.
Richard Lesko, News 7, Clifton Forge.))
Coming up tonight on News 7 Sports -
The 49ers get rid of Steve Mariucci.
The Dazzle looks for its 5th straight win tongiht.
The Hot Stove is smoking tonight -
And Jeff Gordon checks in from Daytona as preseason Winston Cup testing rolls on at the track.
We begin tonight with the kind of news we wish we could always bring you.
Virginia Tech linebacker Michael Crawford - who was diagnosed with Lymphoma like conditions in his neck during the season - is now cancer free.
Tech director of athletic training Mike Goforth told us today that everything during the diagnostic process, including several needle biopsies, indicated that the cancer existed in a lymph node in Crawford's neck.
But after the bowl game he went back to his hometown of Baltimore and when doctors did a complete biopsy and removed the lymph node - NO evidence of the cancer could be found.
[SUPER=03-Blacksburg/This Past Season; :00]
Goforth says that the deeply religious Crawford, who also is engaged to be married is ecstatic.
This Friday he will be formally cleared to resume all activities with the team.
Gorforth also says the team's medical staff will monitor his health closely in the coming months for precautionary reasons.
In one other football note from the NFL - the Niners this afternoon fired head coach Steve Mariucci.
He had one year left on his contract.
Dennis Green is a possible replacement.
The Roanoke Dazzle plays seven of its next ten games in the friendly confines of the Roanoke Civic Center starting with tonight's date against the Asheville Altitude.
[SUPER=03-Roanoke/January 4th; :00]
The Altitude is currently 9 and 15 and sits in last place in the NBDL standings, but Coach Kent Davison knows his club is in for a fight tonight.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Kent Davison/Dazzle Head Coach; :04]
[SUPER=01-Terrence Shannon/Dazzle Forward; :25]
[OUT Q=need to change."]
There are also a number of college roundball games on tap tonight including the Virginia Tech women hosting Pitt at 7.
The Roanoke men are also home in the Bast Center tonight for an ODAC game with Guilford. That one tips off at seven, as well.
Also, UVa is in Durham tonight trying to knock off top ranked Duke and put the clamps on J.J.
We will have highlights of all of those game for you on News 7 at 11 tonight, plus at nine this evening you can catch Maryland and Wake Forest from the ACC right here on Your Hometown Station from the friendly confines of your living room.
The second test session of the preseason in Dayton rolled on today with a former multiple winner at the track leading the way.
[SUPER=03-Daytona Beach, FL; :00]
Dale Jarrett posted the fastest test time of the week so far as he turned a lap at 183 point 064 miles an hour.
Jeff Gordon hasn't been all that fast this week - so far - but the aura of the track and importance of the event will ensure that he's in the thick of things once the race starts.
(///// SOT /////)
[SUPER=01-Jeff Gordon/DuPont Chevy Driver; :10]
[OUT Q=...YOU'LL NEVER FORGET."]
The temperatures continue to drop, but the HOT STOVE is still keeping baseball warm in this off-season with just enough stoking to ignite a little interest.
Today, Bartolo Colon was shipped to the White Sox in a three team deal that also involves the Yankees and Expos.
The other big name in this deal is Orlando Hernandez. El Duque is headed to the Expos.
The Yankees got right-handed pitchers Antonio Osuna and Delvis Lantigua from Chicago in the deal.
Getting older can be both good and bad.
For people on a fixed income the financial toll can be overwhelming.
For 80- year old Harold Street, it's been a battle to pay for his medication since his wife's death.
But Street found a friend in the parish nurse program in Wytheville.
Over the past three years, the program has helped hundreds of people get their medication "free of charge" through pharmaceutical companies, by helping them fill out the necessary paperwork.
(///// SOT /////)
[SOT 00:22:36 00:31:45-57]
[IN Q=It's been a ]
(( HAROLD STREET/WYTHEVILLE RESIDENT: IT'S BEEN A GREAT HELP TO ME, I JUST THANK KAREN AND THE CHURCH. ))
((KAREN KARNEI: IN OUR AGING SOCIETY, WE DON'T THINK OF 80 YEARS OLD AS AGING, AND PEOPLE'S RETIREMENT IT JUST ISN'T GOING TO CARRY THEM THROUGH.))
[SUPER=01-Harold Street/Wytheville Resident; :00QUICK!!!!!!!]
[SUPER=01-Karen Karnei/Parish Nurse; :06]
[out q= carry them through. ]
Coming up on NEWS 7 at eleven, we'll have the story of Ruth Bryant who credits the parish nurse program with keeping her alive.
Just a handful of her medications cost 30- thousand dollars every month.