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NATION IN BRIEF: 18-wheeler ends up hanging off Texas highway

18-wheeler ends up hanging off Texas highway

FORT WORTH, Texas -- An 18-wheeler pulling an empty water tank ended up hanging precariously off an interstate ramp in Fort Worth after a pre-dawn crash, and three people were rescued from the wreck.

Fire Department spokesman Tim Hardeman said emergency crews rescued the truck driver from his cab as it dangled off the elevated stretch of the I-20 on Thursday morning. He was treated at the scene for minor injuries.

Hardeman said two people inside a car that was wedged beneath the giant semitrailer were cut free after about three hours. Details on their conditions were not immediately available.

2010 census: Hispanics reach 50 million

WASHINGTON -- Hispanics accounted for more than half of the U.S. population increase over the last decade, exceeding estimates in most states as they crossed a new census milestone: 50 million, or 1 in 6 Americans.

Meanwhile, more than 9 million Americans checked two or more race categories on their 2010 census forms, up 32 percent from 2000, a sign of burgeoning multiracial growth in an increasingly minority nation.

The Census Bureau on Thursday released its first set of national-level findings from the 2010 count on race and migration, detailing a decade in which rapid minority growth, aging whites and the housing boom and bust were the predominant story lines.

Analysts said the results confirmed a demographic transformation under way that is upending traditional notions of racial minorities, political swing districts, even city and suburb.

Oil settles lower, below $106 per barrel

NEW YORK -- After government reports gave a mixed read on the U.S. economic recovery, oil prices on Thursday settled close to where they began.

The Commerce Department said companies trimmed orders for manufactured goods in February, suggesting that businesses were limiting spending. Meanwhile the Labor Department said fewer people applied for unemployment benefits last week, indicating that employers could be expanding their work forces.

Benchmark crude prices fluctuated as traders digested the news, rising as high as $106.69 a barrel before dropping back.