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macon.com Midday Update: Delta to offer Wi-Fi on mainline domestic fleet; Edouard makes landfall with strong wind, rain; Fugitive sought in south Ga. killing waives extradition

Delta Air Lines Inc. said today it will offer broadband wireless Internet access on its entire domestic mainline fleet by the middle of next year.

The Atlanta-based company said Wi-Fi service will be offered for a fee to customers traveling throughout the continental U.S.

The nation’s No. 3 carrier is partnering with Aircell, an airborne communications provider, to install the network on Delta’s domestic fleet of more than 330 aircraft.

The system will allow Delta customers traveling with Wi-Fi enabled devices — such as laptops, smartphones and PDAs — to access the Internet while in flight.

A flat fee of $9.95 will be charged on flights of three hours or less, and $12.95 on flights of more than three hours.

The service will be offered initially on Delta’s fleet of 133 MD88/90 aircraft and will expand to the remaining domestic fleet of more than 200 Boeing 737, 757 and 767-300 aircraft during the first half of 2009. It expects to have the technology installed on its entire domestic fleet by next summer.

– Associated Press

Edouard makes landfall with strong wind, rain

Tropical Storm Edouard hit the Texas Gulf coast east of Galveston today with strong winds and heavy rain, but did little more than soak the travelers who came to relax on the tourist town’s beaches.

The National Hurricane Center in Miami said the storm made landfall over a stretch of coast east of Galveston and west of the Louisiana border, between the small coastal town of High Island and Sabine Pass. Though forecasters had feared it could become a hurricane, its sustained winds only reached 65 mph, short of hurricane strength at 74 mph.

The storm is expected to weaken later in the day as it moves west-northwest over Texas.

Strong winds and horizontal rain were hitting the Bolivar Peninsula, a thin strip of land northeast of Galveston that separates Galveston Bay from the Gulf of Mexico. The area is dotted with beach houses and patches of trees.

The storm hit at the height of tourist season in Galveston, but tourism officials said many vacationers had planned to stay in hopes that the area would not be hit as hard as South Padre Island was by Hurricane Dolly on July 23.

Galveston, scene of a 1900 hurricane that killed about 8,000 people, did not order any evacuations ahead of Edouard.

– Associated Press

Fugitive sought in south Ga. killing waives extradition

A man sought in the slaying of a store clerk in Valdosta is expected to be returned to Lowndes County as early as today.

Authorities said 23-year-old Daymon Heard waived extradition Monday in a Jacksonville, Fla., courtroom.

Heard is accused in Wednesday’s shooting death of 48-year-old Jay Patel at a grocery store in Lake Park. Police said he was arrested in the Florida city the next day.

Heard is also a suspect in the murder of another store clerk in Lake City, Florida.

– Associated Press

WHAT'S COMING UP ON MACON.COM

– The Warner Robins Little Leaguers will face the West Virginia champions this afternoon in Game 3 of the regional tournament. Come back to macon.com today at 12:55 p.m. to listen to a live Web cast of the game. After the game, look for complete coverage, including photos and a story.

– The Bibb County Commission meets tonight. We'll let you know what happens.

VISIT US AGAIN SOON

We invite you to check out our Web site again tomorrow for the Midday Update. Monday through Friday, Online Editor Beth MacFadyen will bring you timely information about what Telegraph staffers are working on, plus news we think you need to know immediately. Send feedback to bmacfadyen@macon.com

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