Nation Briefs

Midweek July Fourth a muddle for travelers

NEW YORK –Who knew the calendar could cause so much vacation heartburn? For the first time in five years, Independence Day is on a Wednesday, leaving travelers unsure when to celebrate and worrying those who make a living off tourists.

“The midweek holiday seems to have travelers confused,” said Anthony Del Gaudio, vice president of hotel sales for Loews Hotels, which isn’t seeing the normal July Fourth spike in bookings.

AAA, one of the nation’s largest travel agencies, projects 42.3 million Americans will journey 50 miles or more from home between July 3 and July 8. That’s about the same amount that traveled in 2007, the last time July Fourth was on a Wednesday.

Last year, when the holiday was on a Monday, 40.3 million people traveled. But before you think it’s a big increase, note that AAA’s economists changed how they estimated the number of travelers: They used a six-day period this year compared to five last year.

the associated press

Mid-Atlantic power outages could last days

FRANCONIA, Va. – A day after seeking refuge at shopping malls and movie theaters, hoping the lights would be back on when they returned, 3 million residents faced a grim reality Sunday: stifling homes, spoiled food and a looming commute filled with knocked-out stoplights.

Two days after storms tore across the eastern U.S., power outages were forcing people to get creative to stay cool in dangerously hot weather. Temperatures approached 100 degrees in many storm-stricken areas, and utility officials said the power will likely be out for several more days.

“If we don’t get power tonight, we’ll have to throw everything away,” Susan Fritz, a mother of three, said grimly of her refrigerator and freezer. Fritz came to a library in Bethesda, Md., so her son could do school work. She charged her phone and iPad at her local gym.

Alabama Airbus plant will employ 1,000

MONTGOMERY, Ala. – Airbus’s planned aircraft assembly plant in Alabama will cost $600 million to build and will employ 1,000 people when it reaches full production, officials said Sunday ahead of an official announcement.

Two state officials with knowledge of the company’s plans said the plant in Alabama’s port city of Mobile should create about 2,500 construction jobs, and it will turn out about four planes a month in 2017. The officials spoke to The Associated Press condition of anonymity because they weren’t authorized to discuss the plant ahead of today’s announcement.

The company’s first aircraft assembly plant in America will produce single-aisle passenger planes that will compete with Boeing. The plant will be located at Brookley Aeroplex, which was an Air Force base until its closure in 1969.

Associated Press