COLUMBIA, Ala. (AP) -- A carbon dioxide leak prompted an Alabama nuclear plant to declare an alert, though federal authorities say the issue does not threaten the public.
Southern Co. spokesman Ike Pigott (PIG'-utt) said a carbon dioxide release was detected in an auxiliary building of the Unit 1 reactor at Plant Farley around 5:20 a.m. Saturday.
An initial investigation suggests that the gas came from a fire suppression system, though no fires were detected. Pigott said the volume of gas was equivalent to what might be released from a large fire extinguisher.
Both reactors continued operating normally. No other equipment failures were reported. No radiation was released.
U.S. Nuclear Regulatory Commission spokesman Roger Hannah said federal inspectors were monitoring the incident, but they do not believe it poses any threat to the public.
MONTGOMERY, Ala. (AP) -- Andrew Lackey's execution late last month was the first in Alabama since 2011, when the state had six executions.
Assistant Attorney General Clay Crenshaw says executions have slowed because of challenges to the way Alabama conducts executions.
Bryan Stevenson of Montgomery is an anti-death penalty attorney, and he says challenges have included questions about the drugs used. Attorneys say courts allowed Lackey's execution to proceed mainly because he had dropped his appeals. They say they expect legal challenges to continue to slow the overall pace of Alabama executions
Lackey was executed July 25 by lethal injection at Holman Prison in Atmore for the 2005 shooting and beating death of an 80-year-old Limestone County man.
WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. (AP) -- South Florida's water managers say heavy rains have saturated the region just as the Atlantic hurricane season enters its peak.
According to the South Florida Water Management District, the last four months have been the wettest April-through-July time period since 1932.
In a statement Friday, the chief of the district's water control operations bureau said, "South Florida is saturated, leaving very few places to move water as we work to keep the system prepared for the peak of hurricane season."
The district is a state agency and oversees flood control and Everglades restoration between Orlando and the Florida Keys. Officials say July's rainfall was above-average in all 16 of the district's counties.
Some of the heaviest rains fell over Lake Okeechobee, where the water level has risen to 15.86 feet.
ORLANDO, Fla. (AP) -- An Orlando police K-9 is recovering after authorities say a suspected burglar repeatedly held the dog underwater, nearly drowning him.
WOFL Fox 35 Orlando reports Seabee and his handler were responding reports of a burglar Thursday at about 1:30 p.m.
The German Shepherd found 18-year-old suspect Landon Bradley Barnes and followed him into a swampy area near Druid Lake. Police say Barnes held Seabee underwater as the dog tried to force the teen out of the lake.
Seabee spent the night recovering at an animal hospital. He was released Friday but police said he has a high fever.
Barnes has been charged with burglary, resisting an officer with violence and injuries on a police dog.
OCALA, Fla. (AP) -- The body of a man who went diving at the Ocala National Forest has been recovered. Jason Yeh was reported missing Friday afternoon. His body was found Saturday morning by members of the Marion County Sheriff's Office Underwater Recovery Team.
MIAMI (AP) -- Emergency management officials say that federal funding will help communities in the Florida Panhandle return to normal after a major flooding. President Barack Obama signed a disaster declaration for Florida in response to the flooding over the July 4th holiday week. Holmes, Walton and Washington counties saw more than 12 inches of rain.
ATLANTA (AP) -- Investigators are trying to determine what killed a 32-year-old woman found floating in Lake Lanier. Authorities said fishermen found the body of Dianne Michelle Baxter of Gainesville in the water Friday.
SAVANNAH, Ga. (AP) -- A Georgia scientist's research on how boat docks can harm coastal marshes is being cited by both environmentalists and government regulators in a federal lawsuit. The Southern Environmental Law Center wants a judge to throw out a perk that grants coastal Georgia homeowners permits to build larger docks if they're constructed with open grating instead of solid wood. The idea is that docks full of holes let more sunlight pass through to the marsh grasses beneath.