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Today’s News Headlines from Alabama 810 News 

  • Etowah Co. Man Killed in Texas Dog Attack
  • Anniston Army Depot gets Economic Boost
  • Today is Lead Testing Deadline in Anniston
  • Honda to roll out millionth vehicle in Lincoln

 

Etowah Co. Man Killed in Texas Dog Attack 

Texas Authorities say that An Etowah County native was killed in an apparent dog attack in Willis, Texas, Saturday. 41 year old David "Ted" McCurry,  was bitten over more than 90 percent of his body by the animal.  Authorities said that , McCurry had driven to a residence in Willis to inquire about the sale of a large male pit bull named "Dax."  The owner, Firas Bescisso, was home at the time of the incident.
McCurry and his companion, 19 year old Kimberly Cunningham, were at the residence when the dog broke free from the owner and attacked both McCurry and Cunningham while they stood near a car in the residence's drive way.
According to the Montgomery Sheriff's Office Detective Tommy Overstreet, Cunningham was attacked first, but was able to get atop the roof of the car for safety.  Both McCurry and Bescisso attempted to restrain the dog from attacking Cunningham.  While attempting to restrain the dog, it broke away from Bescisso and attacked McCurry.  Authorities said the fatal bite was to McCurry's neck.  The dog was able to drag McCurry down and and attack his neck and head.  Bescisso received scratch marks and minor bites to his hands.  Bescisso had purchased the pit bull five months ago for home security purposes.  He claimed the dog had never shown any type of aggression and the incident was the first of its kind.  The dog was confiscated by Montgomery County (Texas) Animal Control at the scene and will be detained until an investigation is completed and the animal is destroyed.  The case will be referred to the district attorney to determine if any criminal charges will be filed against the dog's owner.  McCurry's family plans to return his body to the area for burial.

 

Anniston Army Depot gets Economic Boost 

The Anniston army depot is about to receive an economic boost from the U.S. Army.  The Army Material Command has designated the depot as the official repair facility for all the nation’s Stryker combat vehicles. The Stryker is the latest ground combat system in the army’s inventory. Officials say It’s hard to say what the Stryker will bring in, but right now, the budget for the depot and tenants is $1.5 billion, with payroll close to $400 million. According to army officials, as many as 2,700 Strykers are budgeted to be repaired in 2007. 

 

Today is Lead Testing Deadline in Anniston 

Midnite tonight is the final day for Residents in Hobson City and large parts of Oxford, Golden Springs, and north and west Anniston to request that their properties be tested for possible lead contamination. The Foothills Community Partnership, which coordinates the outreach and information segments of the EPA’s Anniston Lead Site Project Area, will close registration for what it terms Zone B, an area that contains about 8,000 residences and businesses. Already, some 2,800 property owners have asked that their land be tested, and officials guess that 3,000 in that zone will have been tested by the project’s completion. Once property owners request the testing, the Foothills group coordinates sampling and testing for surface-area lead. Teams have sampled 262 properties so far in Zone B and 401 in Zone A, with 150 properties already cleaned.  Outreach and registration will continue for Zone A, which includes areas immediately surrounding current and former foundries. Those neighborhoods have higher contamination rates because of their proximity to the foundry sites. Properties in Zone B mostly were contaminated by foundry fill dirt and sand moved to the neighborhoods during their development. For more information, or to request a test, call 238-6244;  

 

Honda to roll out Millionth Vehicle in Lincoln 

Honda is gearing up to roll its 1 millionth Alabama-made vehicle off the assembly line at its $1.3 billion factory in Lincoln.  In 1999, the 1,350-acre site where the 3.1-million-square foot factory now stands was just a cow pasture. In November 2001, the first Odyssey minivan left the Talladega County plant for a dealership. The next year, the Pilot sport utility was added the mix and the plant's work force continued to expand. Those workers, who split an annual payroll of $230 million, have undergone a transformation. Jim Hayes, president of the Economic Development Partnership of Alabama recruiting group, also sees a transformation as plans are made for Honda to roll that 1 millionth vehicle off the assembly line this Friday. He sees a state that had no auto heritage become a respected player in the global industry. It's also a sign of respect and trust. Tokyo-based Honda has designated the Alabama plant as its sole North American producer of Odysseys and Pilots. In slightly more than a decade, nearly $8 billion has been invested to set up assembly lines and parts factories, while nearly 45,000 direct jobs have been created, many of them paying as much as $25 an hour. Honda alone makes purchases of $1 billion in Alabama each year. Though Alabama didn't produce a single vehicle before 1997, by next year the state's three auto plants should be turning out 760,000 annually. Mercedes, which produces vehicles at a slower rate, made its 500,000th M-Class in 2004, seven years after the original assembly plant opened. The plant now operates two lines and makes three different vehicles, putting it closer to the 1 million milestone. In less than two years of production, Hyundai's Montgomery plant has made nearly 267,000 Sonata sedan and Santa Fe SUVs.
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