The following stories have been hand-selected by the Assignment Desk at News4:
MARYLAND GOES HANDS-FREE SOON
Drivers in Maryland will be required to use hands-free cellphone equipment as of Friday, but the ban on driving with a phone glued to your ear is the least-enforceable law of its kind in the nation. The law requires that police have some other primary reason to stop a car before they can issue a $40 ticket for using a hand-held cellphone. Just seven other states and the District allow drivers to be pulled over for that violation alone. "Laws that are secondary are better than doing nothing, but not much better," said Jonathan Adkins of the Governors Highway Safety Association, an organization of state highway officials. "They are difficult to enforce and send a message to drivers that this isn't a serious issue. The benefit of a secondary law is really an educational benefit as these laws generally are not enforceable."
VIRGINIA BEACH SHARK ATTACK
The waves weren't so hot as Caleb Kauchak and his friends paddled out off Sandbridge on Friday. So the 18-year-old decided to goad Poseidon, the sea god in Greek mythology, into sending some better surf. "Smite me, oh mighty Poseidon!" he shouted. The response he got wasn't the one he was expecting. A s he stood in chest-deep water next to his surfboard, Kauchak felt a searing pain as something took a bite out of his ankle. He jumped onto his board and felt another wave of pain as the creature clamped down on his knee, he said. When it let go, Kauchak said he paddled to shore as fast as he could, limped onto the beach, plopped down in the sand and looked at his shredded flesh. He didn't get a good look at his attacker, but he's pretty sure it was a shark. Medics confirmed his injuries are consistent with those a small shark would inflict.
COLBERT:MIGRANT WORKER FOR A DAY
Taking his blowhard comedy act to Congress, Stephen Colbert told lawmakers that a day picking beans alongside illegal immigrants convinced him that farm work is "really, really hard." "It turns out — and I did not know this — most soil is at ground level," Colbert testified Friday. Also, "It was hotter than I like to be." Still, Colbert expressed befuddlement that more Americans aren't clamoring to "begin an exciting career" in the fields and instead are leaving the low-paid work to illegal immigrants. Staying in character as a Comedy Central news commentator, Colbert offered a House hearing his "vast" knowledge, drawn from spending a single day on a New York farm as a guest of the United Farm Workers.
DEER HUNTING SEASON STARTS
Managed deer hunts will be going on in Montgomery County Parks, from October through January. One of the reasons for these hunts? "We have over 2,000 automobile accidents [involving deer] reported by the police each year," says Rob Gibbs, Natural Resources manager for Montgomery County parks. Gibbs says those are just the documented accidents, and suspects that there are many more that go unreported. These managed hunts are commonplace now, but they didn't used to be. Deer, once rarely spotted, are now seen even in urban areas. "We've gone from being criticized to people saying 'when can you come to my neighborhood to do it?'" says Gibbs. The hunts will take place in nine county parks. The parks will be closed when the hunts take place.
DULLES PLANE PULL
Discover just how much heavier than air planes actually are at the Sept. 25 Dulles Day Family Festival and Plane Pull, which will run from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Teams of 25 will race to see which team can pull their airplane 25 feet the fastest. Prizes will also be given to the slowest team, the most enthusiastic team, the lightest team, the heaviest team and the team that raises the most money. A minimum of $1,000 must be raised by each team. Kids can join in the fun with a bus pull, in which teams of eight compete to pull a school bus 12 feet. Each child must raise a minimum of $10 to compete and will receive a bus pull T-shirt. Volunteers are also welcome. The festival will feature live music, a car show, military and civilian aircraft displays, business exhibits, and children’s games and entertainment.