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    Sting's Plane Scare

    Every breath you take, every plane you break, apparently God is watching you, Sting.

    The rocker had a scare Monday night when the small plane carrying him, his production manager and two pilots skidded off the runway after landing in Florence, Italy. None of those aboard was injured.

    The former Police frontman's Cessna Citation 5 reportedly touched down without a hitch. But for some reason, the plane couldn't stop, smashing through a safety net at the end of the runway before finally grinding to a halt on a grassy knoll at the edge of the airport. Flights out of the central Italian city were delayed by about 45 minutes while the plane was removed from the landing strip.

    Sting's spokesman said the Grammy-winning musician walked away unscathed from the mishap, drove with his production manager to Sting's villa in the nearby Tuscan village of Figline Valdarno and was otherwise safe and sound.

    Italy's news agency, ANSA, speculated that the brakes failed, but the cause of the accident is still under investigation.

    While Sting stills his beating heart with a fine Chianti and pasta dinner, he can bask in the good news he received shortly before the plane problem. It was announced the singer-songwriter will be given an award this week from the Arab-American community.

    The Arab-American Institute plans to honor Sting with one of its 2001 Kahlil Gibran Spirit of Humanity awards for his "commitment to indigenous people and the environment, as well as his efforts to promote cross-cultural understanding." The group praised the rocker in particular for his hit "Desert Rose," which he recorded with Algerian star Cheb Mami and includes Arabic lyrics and a traditional Arab sound.

    Presuming he's ready to take to the friendly skies again, Sting will fly to Washington, D.C., Saturday to accept the award, after which he'll kick off a three-week North American tour.

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