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[ANCHOR=Kim]

As many as 150 are dead in the school hostage situation at a Russian School.

We'll have the latest.
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And, Hurricane Frances has slowed down, but it poses a major threat to Florida.
More than two and a half million people have been told to evacuate.
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[ANCHOR=LEO]
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The Labor Day weekend's looking nice across our area but we still have to monitor Hurricane Frances. I'll have the latest in my forecast.

[ANCHOR=Kimberly]


Stay with us. News 7 at noon, starts right now.
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Florida's Governor prepares residents for the worst, as the still- unpredictable Hurricane Frances heads for landfall tomorrow afternoon or tomorrow evening.
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[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
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Good Afternoon, I'm Kimberly McBroom.
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Streets in towns along Florida's Atlantic coast are deserted, as many people are heeding calls to get out before Hurricane Frances comes in.
Forecasters say the massive Category Three storm is slowing down, and could drop between ten and 20 inches of rain on Florida when it arrives sometime tomorrow.
Aleen Sirgany is in Juno Beach, Florida this afternoon and joins us now with the latest.
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[Russian-Hostages]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
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The hostage situation nears an end in southern Russia-- but it'll be a violent end.
More than 100 are confirmed dead after commandos stormed a school, where hundreds of people have been held captive for days.
Officials say the death toll could reach 150.
Charlie D'agata has details.
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[SUPER=02-Peter Baker/Reporter and Witness;]
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((
Pkge: Few would have predicted the chaos -- and carnage -- that brought an end to the siege at the Russian school where Chechen rebels were holding hundreds of hostages....most of them children
It appeared to start when a group of captives tried to escape...catching the hostage takers...and Russian special forces...by surprise. As the militants fired on the fleeing children, Russian commandoes blasted their way in....blowing a hole in a wall.
Reporter Peter Baker was on the scene. voice over pix:
"one boy we talked to said he was literally blown out of the window ....many of the others were virtually naked, blackened and burned and bloodied from head to food, brought out on stretchers...."
Several explosions and a ferocious two hour gunfight followed. The militants -- some of them wearing explosive vests -- had booby trapped the school, stringing trip wires in hallways and laying land mines outside.
The roof of the gymnasium had been blasted and caught fire...an explosion thought to have been detonated by one of the rebels...there are reports of dozens of bodies found.
Under a hail of gunfire, dazed children covered in blood began to emerge from the school...terrified, half-naked, very young children...running away from the building while gunfire rang out in all directions. Many collapsed, exhausted, and severly dehydrated.
Desperate parents broke past the police cordon and searched for their sons and daughters...each explosion and machine-gun blast bringing new terror.

(sot/Baker) "dead bodies are being laid on the grass beneath white

covers and the parents are coming to peak under the covers to see if it happens to be their child"
Some of the militants tried to move through crowds of hostages trying to break free...firing indiscriminately and stopping cars at gunpoint in an effort to get away.
Russian officials say several of the hostage-takers were killed, but some managed to escape.
Russian President Vladimir Putin had vowed that no force would be used to end the crisis...and officials say storming the school was not planned...but faced with suicidal militants and sparked by a surprise escape, there was no option left. Charlie D'Agata, CBS News. ))

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A broken water line is creating problems for some people in southwest Roanoke.
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A 12-inch main broke this morning on Brambleton Avenue across from Fishburn Park.
Crews from the valley water authority are working on it, but officials say many people have no service or are dealing with low pressure.
Officials say they hope to have repairs finished within the next few hours.
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[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
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Still to come on the newscast,
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[VO-NAT ]


Plus as the Republican Convention closes in New York, the presidential campaign heats up for both parties.
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[Republican-Convention]


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President Bush is back on the stump, a day after accepting his party's nomination for another term.
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Bush's speech signaled the end of the Republican National Convention last night, and the start of the final stretch of the campaign.
The President says he's the best candidate to lead the nation in the war on terror.
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((WE WILL BUILD A SAFER WORLD AND A MORE HOPEFUL AMERICA AND NOTHING WILL HOLD US BACK.))
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Bush also took a swipe at Democratic opponent, John Kerry's record on taxes and the war in Iraq.
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Kerry, meanwhile attended a late night rally in Ohio, and wasted no time responding to the President's criticism.


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((SEN. JOHN KERRY/D- PRESIDENTIAL NOMINEE: I WILL NOT HAVE MY COMMITMENT TO DEFEND THIS COUNTRY QUESTIONED BY THOSE WHO REFUSED TO SERVE WHEN THEY COULD HAVE AND BY THOSE WHO HAVE MISLED THE NATION INTO IRAQ. ))
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[OUT Q=into Iraq.]
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Bush made his first post- convention appearance today in Pennsylvania.
He'll follow that up with stops in Wisconsin and Iowa.
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[ENG#=2]



The three students killed in a fire at a University of Mississippi fraternity house were remembered last night.
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Three thousand people attended a campus-wide memorial for the victims of last week's fire.
Three students, including sophomore Howard Stone of Martinsville, were killed last Friday when flames swept through the Alpha Tau Omega House.
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((CASEY WILLIAM BOYETTE/ATO FRATERNITY MEMBER & CHAPLAIN; TONIGHT PROVIDES CLOSURE. WE WILL NEVER FORGET OUR BROTHERS.
WE WILL ALWAYS LOVE THEM. BUT TONIGHT WE REALIZE THE CAMPUS, EVERYONE ELSE, NEEDS TO MOVE ON.))
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[OUT Q=to move on.]
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Investigators have not yet officially announced what caused the blaze, but say signs point to electrical problems.
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The cost of property damage caused by Tropical Storm Gaston has topped 80 MILLION dollars in the Richmond area.


It was more than 60 million in the city alone.
Meanwhile, some amazing video shows just how dangerous the situation was Monday night-
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These pictures are taken from the windshield camera of a Richmond Transit Bus-
Robbie Williams was driving the bus and became stuck along with two passengers.
Within two minutes water devours the curb, and debris is floating by.
In ten minutes water is halfway up the side of some cars.
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((I THOUGHT I WAS GOING TO DIE THAT'S HOW SCARED WE WERE.))
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On board the bus, Robbie-- who can not swim- screams for help..
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((ROBBIE: WE WERE THINKING UP A PLAN JUST IN CASE WATER CAME INSIDE THE BUS.. WHAT WE WERE GOING TO DO.. COULD WE GET OUT THE HATCH AND STAND ON TOP OF THE BUS OR COULD WE TRY TO SWIM AWAY.))
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Robbie says radio dispatch told her to stay calm, and then told her they got a call that a young woman in a car next to them needed help-
They opened the emergency window and pulled the woman in.
Rescue boats did come in to free Robbie and the others on the bus. They say they're thankful to be alive.
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[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
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Coming up next on the newscast,
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some stray kittens turn out to be cougars, but we'll tell you why they may end up thinking they're bears.
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They're not your typical stray animal--
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Three baby cougars were found in back yard in Washington State just over a week ago.
They were taken to an animal welfare agency so that wildlife specialists can feed and care for them.
But in order to limit human contact with the baby cougars, the specialists are wearing "bear suits" so the kittens never see a person. They're hoping to rehabilitate the kittens and eventually release them back into the wild, or possibly a zoo.
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((LYNN FITCH/PAWS: THEY'RE NOT GOING TO LET THEM GO ANYPLACE WHERE THEY'RE GOING TO BE BRED OR THERE'S NOT GOING TO BE COMMERCIAL EXPLOITATION UHM IT'S GOT TO BE AN ACCREDITED SANCTUARY AND OR ZOO TYPE SITUATION. ))
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So far, both the San Diego Zoo and a Louisiana animal sanctuary have shown interest in the cougars.
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On Wall Street at Noon, the DOW was DOWN two points. The NASDAQ has dropped 29.
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[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
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Coming up after the break, we'll take a look at what games you can expect on Friday football Extra tonight.
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And it's another wardrobe malfunction -- only this time Miss Universe is the one caught off guard.
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[S-ACC]


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The A-C-C football season is about to get underway, and Steve Mason has an inside look at the conference's quarterbacks.
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((STEVE MASON:NORTH CAROLINA STATE'S PHILLIP RIVERS, VIRGINIA'S MATT SCHAUB AND MARYLAND'S SCOTT MCBRIEN GENERATED 185 CAREER TOUCHDOWN PASSES. WHILE THEY ARE GONE, EIGHT OF THE 11 ACC TEAMS RETURN STARTING QUARTERBACKS THIS SEASON.))
((ACC quarterbacks have been named conference player of the year four of the last five years and nine times since 1990. Bryan Randall and Brock Berlin add more competitive fire to the position. ((BROCK BERLIN:O'BRIEN AWARD CANIDATE:)) ((DARIAN DURANT/51 TD PASSES AT UNC:))
Most of the current ACC QB's say studying their past will improve their future, with focus on what Rivers and Schaub were able to accomplish. ((BRYAN RANDALL/27 TD PASSES AT VA. TECH:)) ((CHARLIE WHITEHURST/PRESEASON ACC OFFENSIVE PLAYER OF THE YEAR:))
talent is key, but for players like Whitehurst, Durant and Florida State's Chris Rix, who have combined for 74 career starts, maturity and guidance is almost as important. ((TOMMY BOWDEN/2003 ACC COACH OF THE YEAR FOR CLEMSON:)) ((BOBBY BOWDEN/29TH SEASON AT FLORIDA STATE:)) USC and LSU both shared the national championship with signal callers who played their first full season as starters in the Trojans' Matt Leinhart and the Tigers Matt Mauck. ((CHUCK AMATO/N.C. STATE QUARTERBACK:)) Al Groh also hopes a first year starter in Marques Hagans can take his explosiveness from his return days and apply them under center.)) ((AL GROH/UVA HEAD FOOTBALL COACH:)) ((SIX OF THIS SEASONS ACC SIGNAL CALLERS , BERLIN, DURANT, RIX, RANDALL, WHITEGURST, AND GA. TECH'S REGGIE BALL ARE ON THE PRESEASON LIST OF 42 FOR THE DAVEY O'BRIEN AWARD WHICH GOES TO THE BEST COLLEGE QUARTERBACK IN THE COUNTRY. STEVE MASON FOR YOUR ACC CONNECTION:))

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The majority of high schools kick off their football seasons tonight -- and as always -- Friday Football Extra will be there. Here's the schedule of games for week number one.
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[Miss-Universe]


[ANCHOR=Kimberly]
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[ENG#=4]



And finally today--
It's an incident that Janet Jackson can probably relate to.
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[VO-NAT]
[SUPER=03-Sydney, Australia;]


Hundreds of people turned out to see Miss Universe strut her stuff on the catwalk yesterday.
But they weren't expecting to see quite so much of her.
Jennifer Hawkins-- an Australian rugby cheerleasder -- was at a Sydney fashion show, when the skirt she was wearing unravelled from around her waist, and fell to the floor.
As spectators gasped, the 20- year- old giggled and rushed backstage.
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[IN Q=It was so embarassing]

((JENNIFER HAWKINS/MISS UNIVERSE: IT WAS SO EMBARRASSING. BUT YOU KNOW I JUST THOUGHT I'D GET IT OUT IN THE OPEN AND I KNOW IT'S GOING TO BE ON THE NEWS TONIGHT. SO IT WAS JUST A PITY I WASN'T WEARING BETTER PANTIES. ))
[SUPER=01-Jennifer Hawkins/Miss Universe;]
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[OUT Q=better panties.]
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[VO-NAT]


Her sense of humor about the incident won Hawkins praise from a Sydney tabloid.
"The Daily Telegraph" gave her a perfect 10 for courage under fire.
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