Firefighter dies in fall from ladder

POMPANO BEACH -- A veteran South Florida firefighter has died after falling nearly 100 feet from the top of a ladder truck during a training exercise.

William “Bill” Elliott was climbing up and down the ladder in a training exercise with four other firefighters Friday.

Pompano Beach Fire Rescue Chief Harry Small said it was a new truck, but similar to other trucks they’ve had and that Elliott, 50, and been on nearly identical ladders repeatedly. Firefighters wear a harness going up and down ladders but are only hooked in at certain points.

A firefighter standing on the ladder below Elliott said he watched him fall.

The Sun Sentinel reports Elliott had been with the department since 1989.

Boaters cautioned to watch for manatees

WEST PALM BEACH -- Boaters are being cautioned to look out for manatees that may be congregating near power plants during the state’s chilly weather.

The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission says the cold fronts have driven large numbers of manatees to warm-water areas near power plants.

FWC Capt. David Schaeffer says as the weather warms up, the mammals move away from the plants toward feeding areas. That’s when there’s the greatest danger of boat strikes.

18-year-old pedestrian killed when hit by car

ORLANDO -- An 18-year-old pedestrian was killed when he was hit by a car while crossing a central Florida street.

Christian Anthony was standing with two other people when he tried to cross an Orlando street and for some reason fell face first into the road. The driver was unable to swerve and struck Anthony.

The Florida Highway Patrol says Friday’s crash remains under investigation.

Man found shot to death in Everglades

MIAMI -- Authorities are searching for clues after a man was found shot to death in the Everglades.

Adrian Lopez, 21, was reported missing Tuesday. Authorities said he was found shot multiple times Thursday night.

Reptiles at MIA make TSA’s ‘Top 10’ list

MIAMI --It’s not just shampoo being confiscated at airport checkpoints around the country.

The Transportation Security Administration has released a list of its Top 10 most interesting “catches” in 2011. They include chunks of C4 explosives found in Yuma, Ariz., a loaded .380 pistol in Detroit, and more than 1,200 firearms discovered nationwide (ranked 1, 2 and 3, respectively).

Then there was the guy who tried to stuff seven snakes and three turtles in his pants before boarding a flight to Brazil at Miami International Airport, (ranked 10).

“Some are dangerous, some simply look dangerous and can cause major delays, and others are just plain weird,” wrote Bob Burns, the TSA’s blogger.

The other items: two throwing knives in Washington, D.C. (4); a flare gun with seven flares in Norfolk (5) a stun gun disguised as a smartphone in Los Angeles (6); inert landmines in Salt Lake City (7); a martial arts weapon in Pensacola (8); and a student’s science project, which looked like an explosive device, in Omaha (9).

-- Herald wire services