The daily Nebraskan. ([Lincoln, Neb.) 1901-current, January 27, 2000, Page 2, Image 2

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    U.S. EAST COAST (AP) -Thousands shivered
Wednesday in stranded cars, waited at airports or
dug themselves out from nearly 2 feet of snow as
forecasters admitted that the deadly East Coast
storm was a nasty surprise.
“We’re really cursing those computer models,”
said Andrew Woodcock, a meteorologist with the
National Weather Service in Sterling, Va. “They
had the low (pressure system) way out to sea.”
The storm, however, raced north along the
coast Monday and Tuesday, dumping nearly 2 feet
of snow along the coast. Flurries were expected
Wednesday across parts of the Northeast as the
storm system moves out to sea, and more delays
were expected at major Eastern airports, some of
which were shut down Tuesday.
Many schools and businesses across the East
also were closed-Wednesday, along with all
Philadelphia city offices and courts and most
Maryland state offices. And more than 150,000
people were still without power in the Southeast on
Traffic deaths on snowy and icy roads were
reported from the Carolinas to New York, and two
people were found dead of exposure in South
In Great Barrington, Mass., the search resumed
today for a 5-year-old girl missing and feared dead
after she and her 9-year-old brother tumbled into
the icy Housatonic River while walking to school
Tuesday. The boy was treated and released.
Hundreds of motorists waited for help
Wednesday along Interstate 85 in North Carolina,
which was virtually shut down by jackknifed
trucks for a 20-mile stretch near the Virginia state
National Guardsmen and Highway Patrol offi
cers were sent to help.
Some of the stranded motorists had been in
their cars since Tuesday afternoon, they com
plained in cellular phone calls to broadcasters in
the area.
“I’ve been here since 2:30, and I don’t under
stand why no one’s come,” one irate motorist, who
identified herself only as Cheryl from San Diego,
complained Wednesday.
Elsewhere in North Carolina, 120 travelers
were stranded overnight at Raleigh-Durham
International Airport, where airlines were not
expected to begin carrying passengers again until
this morning, airport spokesman Mike Blanton
said. The airport had a record 20.3 inches of snow.
Crews were trying to open one 10,000-foot
runway so airlines could bring in empty planes to
prepare for the resumption of operations today,
Blanton said.
By Wednesday, up to 22 inches of snow had
fallen in North Carolina, with 20 inches in
Maryland, 19 in Virginia, 15 near Washington and
in north-central Massachusetts and 14 in southern
New Jersey. Farther south, Georgia was reeling
from a weekend ice storm that caused an estimated
$35 million in damage.
“We were definitely hoodwinked in this case,”
said Paul G. Knight, a meteorologist with the
Independent Penn State Weather Communications
(( We’re really cursing
those computer models.
They had the low
(pressure system) way
out to sea.”
Andrew Woodcock
meteorologist, National Weather Service
Group in University Park, Pa.
“Wow. Eating a lot of humble pie this morn
ing,” Dewey Walston wrote Tuesday to fellow
weather service forecasters in Washington, where
250,000 federal employees were given another day
off Wednesday.
States of emergency were declared in parts of
Georgia, North Carolina and Maryland, with the
National Guard called in to help clear roads and
rescue motorists.
Nearly 127,000 people remained without elec
tricity today in North Carolina, where the town of
Pinehurst had no water service because of power
outages, and more cold weather was forecast. More
than 40,000 were still blacked out in South
In Georgia, where 17,000 people were without
power Wednesday, state officials feared sleet this
weekend could snap even more power lines.
Hatch drops out of race, endorses Bush
Orrin Hatch dropped out of the presi
dential race Wednesday and endorsed
George W. Bush, a man he once
quipped would be a good president
only after spending eight years as
Hatch’s No. 2.
He said his admiration for Bush
had grown during their months on the
campaign trail.
“I believe Governor Bush is the
one who can unite the party and bring
the White House back to us,” Hatch
said as he announced his own with
drawal. He made the announcement at
the Capitol, his wife Elaine by his side.
“Now that I am out, I think
Governor Bush is the only person who
can get things done, cut marginal tax
rates so that we can keep this economy
going and improve our schools. I think
he can reach across partisan lines,”
Hatch said.
Bush, campaigning in New
Hampshire, said Hatch’s endorsement
U Most every Republican (voter) was
taken by the time I got in. I had to rely
on people who had never really been
active in the political process before.”
Sen. Orrin Hatch
former Republican presidential candidate
was “especially significant because he
has debated, worked and campaigned
with all of us.... I am honored to have
his support.”
Hatch abandoned the race after a
last-place finish in Monday’s Iowa
caucuses, where he received 1 percent
of the Republican votee. Rival John
McCain didn’t run in Iowa and still
received 5 percent.
Looking relaxed and sounding
upbeat, Hatch told several jokes at his
own expense. He recounted how a
woman in New Hampshire asked to
have her picture taken with him. When
he asked if she wanted to send the
photo to her children, she replied, “No,
I’m just trying to finish off the roll.”
Hatch postponed the news confer
ence a day because of a snowstorm.
He said he had wondered aloud if the
storm was a sign from God to stay in
the race, and his wife had said, “No,
the Iowa caucuses were the sign from
Hatch, 65, said he may have wait
ed too long to start his long-shot can
didacy. He got into the race last sum
mer, months or years after other candi
“Most every Republican (voter)
was taken by the time I got in. I had to
rely on people who had never really
been active in the political process
before,” he said.
Hatch raised and spent about $2.5
million for his campaign, rejecting an
additional $1 million in possible fed
eral matching funds. He had hoped to
raise $36 million.
Hatch plans to return to Utah on
Friday and is expected to announce his
intention to seek a fifth term in the
Senate this fall.
His likely Democratic challenger,
state Attorney General Jan Graham,
said Wednesday she doubted Hatch’s
failed presidential bid would hurt him
at home.
“1 think, if anything, people have
felt a little sorry for Senator Hatch,
and it has engendered a sympathetic
response for him,” she said.
Scattered snow, showers, Mostly Cloudy,
high 28, low 16 high 32, low 22
ManagingidStol-! UndSy^oung ... Questions?Comments?
Associate News Editor: Dane Stickney *or ^*e et^ltor at
Associate News Editor: Diane Broderick ' , .
Opinion Editor: J.J. Harder ** e’fna*'
Sports Editor: Sam McKewon
A&E Editor: Sarah Baker General Manager: Daniel Shattil *
Copy Desk Co-Chief: Jen Walker Publications Board Jessica Hofmann,
Copy Desk Co-Chief: Josh Krauter Chairwoman: (402) 477-0527
Photo Chief: Mike Warren Professional Adviser: Don Walton,
Design Co-Chief: Diane Broderick (402)473-7248
Design Co-Chief: Tim Karstens Advertising Manager: Nick Partsch,
Art Director: Melanie Falk (402) 472-2589
Web Editor: Gregg Steams Asst Ad Manager: Jamie Yeager
Asst. Web Editor: Jewel Mlnarik Classified Ad Manager: Nichole Lake
Fax number: (402)472-1761
World Wide Web:
The Daily Nebraskan (USPS 144-080) is published by the UNL Publications Board, Nebraska
Union 20,1400 R St., Lincoln, NE 68588-0448, Monday through Friday during the academic year;
weekly during the summer sessions.The public has access to the Publications Board.
Readers are encouraged to submit story ideas and comments to the Daily Nebraskan by calling
(402) 472-2588.
Subscriptions are $60 for one year.
Postmaster: Send address changes to the Daily Nebraskan, Nebraska Union 20,1400 R SL,
Lincoln NE 68588-0448. Periodical postage paid at Lincoln, NE.
Chechens stall Russian
progress in capital
GROZNY, Russia (AP) - Rebels
armed with grenade-launchers and
sniper rifles attacked Russian troops
from all sides in the Chechen capital
Wednesday, fighting to keep the feder
al forces from advancing on a strategic
In spite of their lack of progress,
Russian military commanders contin
ued to give an upbeat assessment of the
month-old push to take Grozny.
The approximately 3,000 rebels
remaining in Grozny “have nowhere to
go, and their backs are against the
wall,” said Gen. Valery Manilov.
Despite heavy snow and fog,
Russian warplanes bombed the city,
and Russian troops pressed their eight
day struggle to penetrate the city cen
Manilov told a news conference in
Moscow that federal aircraft and
artillery were targeting only about 30
percent of the buildings in Grozny -
including administrative buildings and
high-rises - because civilians were
believed to be taking shelter in the rest.
“We are trying to minimize the
losses among peaceful civilians in the
course of the anti-terrorist operation in
Chechnya,” he said.
Manilov said civilian deaths in
Chechnya were in the hundreds rather
than the thousands as claimed by the
Chechens, who say the Russians are
bombing and shelling indiscriminately.
Fierce fighting engulfed bomb
shattered districts of eastern Grozny,
which the Russians had previously
claimed to control. •
The Russians appeared to have
made no progress toward seizing a key
objective, Minutka Square, from the
rebels. The square, near a Russian-held
bridge across the Sunzha River that
bisects the city, could give Russian
forces substantial leverage for moving
into downtown Grozny.
Russia’s ORT television channel
reported that snipers were firing heavi
ly from high-rises along the streets
leading to the square.
In the other major center of rebel
resistance, the rugged southern moun
tains, Russian forces waged heavy air
and artillery strikes Wednesday against
suspected rebel bases in the Argun and
Vedeno gorges.
■ Arizona
Study: Freshmen alcohol con
sumption at 34-year low
-Freshmen may be less drunk than
ever before - at least according to new
Alcohol consumption has
decreased among freshmen college
students, according to a study by the
Higher Education Research Institute
at the University of California Los
Angeles. This year, the annual study
shows the lowest level of freshmen
beer drinking in the 34-year history of
the survey.
The number of freshmen who
drank beer frequently or occasionally
was down to 50 percent in 1999, com
pared to 75 percent in 1981. Liquor
and wine rates were 67 percent in
1987, when the question was first
asked, and have now fallen to 54 per
■ Miami
Cuban boy, grandmothers
meet at neutral location
Elian Gonzalez and his grandmothers
arrived Wednesday at a neutral site for
a reunion that was arranged by the
U.S. government because of the per
sonal and political passions swirling
around the 6-year-old Cuban boy.
Elian was driven to a nun’s house
in Miami Beach to see his grandmoth
ers, who had flown in from
Washington and were then brought to
the home in a helicopter.
The grandmothers came to the
United States last week to appeal
directly to the American people and
Congress to send the boy back to his
father in Cuba. Elian’s relatives in
Miami want him to stay and are fight
ing a U.S. government order sending
him back.
The grandmothers were to see
Elian privately, with die boy’s Florida
relatives nearby in the house.
Study: Small-town youth
more likely to use drugs
Adolescents in small-town and rural
America are much more likely than
their peers in urban centers to have
used drugs, according to a private
study released Wednesday.
Eighth-graders in rural America
are 104 percent more likely than those
in big cities to use amphetamines,
including methamphetamines, and 50
percent likelier to use cocaine accord
ing to the study released by the
National Center on Addiction and
Substance Abuse at Columbia
■ Arkansas
Co-pilot of jet that crashed says
he wanted to abort landing
The co-pilot of an American
Airlines jet that crashed while try
ing to land in a storm last June said
Wednesday that he knew the plane
was off course and had urged the
captain to abort the landing.
Instead, the captain attempted to
straighten the plane as it was buffet
ed by high winds. The plane
touched down off-center, breaking
apart and killing 11 people, ftfiKtf'
Officer Michael Origel testiffea
during a National Transportation
Safety Board hearing.
Capt. Richard Buschmann was
among those killed June 1, when the
McDonnell-Douglas MD-82 jet,
traveling from Dallas to Little Rock,
The NTSB is holding a three
day hearing to try to determine what
roles the weather and the pilots’
decisions played in the crash.