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This Hour: Latest Virginia news, sports, business and entertainment

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TUNNEL FIRE

Tunnel fire stops traffic near W.Va., Va. border

CHARLESTON, W.Va. (AP) - A fire inside the East River Tunnel near West Virginia's border with Virginia has stopped traffic on Interstate 77.

West Virginia Turnpike State Police dispatcher D.L. Parsons says a tractor trailer was on fire Friday inside the tunnel. He says first responders were having difficulty getting into the tunnel.

Parsons says traffic north and south is closed and there's no estimate for reopening it. Drivers are being redirected onto U.S. Route 460 at Princeton.

The Virginia Department of Transportation website says traffic is backed up for 6 miles.

Virginia State Police dispatcher J. Marshall says the fire started around 3 p.m. She says Virginia police haven't heard of injuries.

OCEAN BLASTING

US plans wide seismic testing of Atlantic seabed

ATLANTIC CITY, N.J. (AP) - The federal government is planning to use sound blasting to conduct research on the ocean floor along most of the East Coast, using technology similar to that which spawned a court battle between environmentalists and researchers in New Jersey this summer.

The U.S. Geological Survey plans this summer and next to map the outer limits of the continental shelf, and also study underwater landslides that would help predict where and when tsunamis might occur.

But environmentalists say it could cause the same type of damage to marine life they fought unsuccessfully to prevent this month off the coast of New Jersey.

Cindy Zipf of Clean Ocean Action says the new plan would blast the ocean at floor 236 to 265 decibels every 20 to 24 seconds for 17 days.

EXECUTION DRUGS-VIRGINIA

Virginia keeping drug used in botched executions

RICHMOND, Va. (AP) - One of the drugs used in three recent botched executions will remain part of Virginia's lethal injection protocol.

Virginia Department of Corrections spokesman Larry Traylor said Friday that officials aren't considering eliminating midazolam as one of three drugs that can be used as the first dose in Virginia's three-drug cocktail. Midazolam was one of the drugs used in bungled executions in Ohio, Oklahoma and Arizona.

Traylor says Virginia's three-drug protocol is not comparable to the two-drug protocol used in Arizona on Wednesday, when an inmate gasped for breath for more than 90 minutes before dying.

Virginia added midazolam to the protocol in February and has not yet used it in an execution. Eight men are on Virginia's death row. No execution dates are scheduled.

US AGENCIES HACKED-BRITAIN

British man charged in government computer hacking

ALEXANDRIA, Va. (AP) - A British man has been charged with hacking into computers belonging to the Department of Health and Human Services, the U.S. Sentencing Commission and an FBI laboratory, among others.

A grand jury in Alexandria indicted 29-year-old Lauri Love of Stradishall, England, Thursday on charges including conspiracy, causing damage to a protected computer and aggravated identity theft.

Prosecutors say Love and others obtained more than 100,000 employee records including names, Social Security numbers, phone numbers and salary information. He also allegedly obtained credit card numbers.

Love faces up to 10 years in prison if convicted in Virginia. Online court records did not list an attorney.

Love is free on bond in England. He also faces federal charges in New Jersey and New York for allegedly hacking into other federal government computers.

COLONIAL WILLIAMSBURG-TRUSTEES

Rockefeller, Zinni elected to Williamsburg panel

WILLIAMSBURG, Va. (AP) - U.S. Sen. Jay Rockefeller has been elected to the board of the Colonial Williamsburg Foundation.

The West Virginia Democrat's addition to the board was announced by the Virginia historic attraction Friday. The foundation also said retired U.S. Marine Corps Gen. Anthony C. Zinni has been elected to the board.

Zinni has been a teacher and lecturer at numerous institutions, including the College of William & Mary and Virginia Military Institute.

The Rockefeller family has been a major benefactor to Colonial Williamsburg from its inception. Rockefeller's wife, Sharon, served as a trustee from 2001-2013.

The foundation preserves, restores and operates Virginia's 18th century capital of Williamsburg. Colonial Williamsburg includes more than 400 restored or reconstructed buildings, among many other attractions.

NAVY STABBING-CHARGES

Charges filed in stabbing at Navy barracks

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The Navy has filed charges against one of its sailors for repeatedly stabbing another in a barracks near a naval hospital.

The Navy said Friday that Petty Officer 3rd Class Wilbur Harwell is charged with attempted murder and two counts of aggravated assault with a dangerous weapon.

An Article 32 hearing, which is similar to a preliminary hearing, is scheduled for Aug. 18.

The Navy says Harwell attacked Petty Officer 2nd Class Justin Powell of Sarver, Pennsylvania, near Naval Medical Center Portsmouth in June. The stabbing led to an hours-long lockdown at the medical center while authorities searched for Harwell.

Harwell was arrested at a hotel at the oceanfront in nearby Virginia Beach several hours after the stabbing.

SEVERE WEATHER

Va. Gov.: Blessing more didn't die in tornado

CAPE CHARLES, Va. (AP) - Virginia Gov. Terry McAuliffe says it's a blessing more people didn't die when a tornado swept through a campground on the Eastern Shore that claimed two lives and injured dozens others.

McAuliffe toured the Cherrystone Family Camping and RV Resort on the Chesapeake Bay on Friday, a day after a tornado knocked down large pine trees, demolished some campers and flipped over others. A married couple from Jersey City, New Jersey was killed when a tree fell on their tent. McAuliffe says their three children were also injured, and their 13-year-old son is in critical condition following surgery.

McAuliffe addressed reporters at the popular campground, where cleanup efforts were underway and families were retrieving whatever items they could. McAuliffe also says hundreds of acres of farmland were damaged.

SAILOR DEATH

Navy IDs sailor who died in fall as RI man

NORFOLK, Va. (AP) - The Navy has identified a 21-year-old sailor who fell to his death from a sixth-floor balcony of a barracks at Naval Station Norfolk.

Morgan Louis Hayman of Pawtucket, Rhode Island, was killed Tuesday after the Navy said he got into an altercation at Wall Manor, a barracks for transient personnel.

The other sailor was treated for injuries at Sentara Norfolk General Hospital and released. He was not identified.

Both sailors were assigned to the Norfolk-based aircraft carrier USS Harry S. Truman.

Hayman was an aviation ordnance airman.

The Navy says the incident is under investigation.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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