The Centers for Disease Control (CDC) has scheduled a briefing for January 16th, 2018 , to outline how the U.S. public should prepare for the event of a nuclear war. The scheduled briefing comes as tensions between the United States and North Korea continue to rise. A notice on the CDC’s website states “While a nuclear detonation is unlikely, it would have devastating results and there would be limited time to take critical protection steps. Despite the fear surrounding such an event, planning and preparation can lessen deaths and illness. For instance, most people don’t realize that sheltering in place for at least 24 hours is crucial to saving lives and reducing exposure to radiation. While federal, state, and local agencies will lead the immediate response efforts, public health will play a key role in responding.”
The session will include information on what public health programs are doing at the federal, state, and local level to prepare for a nuclear detonation, according to the announcement. Additional information will cover how planning for a nuclear detonation is similar to and different from other emergency responses. The website already has information on What to Do During a Radiation Emergency which lists a nuclear power plant accident, a nuclear explosion or a dirty bomb are examples of radiation emergencies.
While officials stress an attack remains unlikely, Hawaii’s emergency management authorities have released guidelines on what to do, while a monthly statewide siren test was resurrected on Dec. 1, 2017. Over the weekend, Hawaii residents were panicked for a short time from an emergency alert notification sent out on Saturday claiming a ballistic missile threat was inbound to Hawaii. The alert turned out to be a false alarm according to state leaders and emergency officials, who blamed it on an employee who “pushed the wrong button.”
“BALLISTIC MISSILE THREAT INBOUND TO HAWAII. SEEK IMMEDIATE SHELTER. THIS IS NOT A DRILL,” the emergency alert read. The Hawaii Emergency Management Agency quickly updated the alert to: “THERE IS NO MISSILE THREAT OR DANGER TO THE STATE OF HAWAII. REPEAT. FALSE ALARM, “ but many residents didn’t get the update for 15 to 30 minutes as many factors such as cell tower and a person’s location came in to play.
Many are hopeful for a thawing of relations Kim Jong Un said in a New Year’s Day address that he wanted his country to compete in the Olympics. His statement was seen as an olive branch after a tense year of aggression. Recently, officials from North Korea and South Korea met in the Demilitarized Zone for the first high-level talks in more than two years. During the meeting, North Korea said it would send a delegation of athletes, officials and cheerleaders to the 2018 Winter Olympic Games in Pyeongchang, South Korea, in February. The two countries will also reinstate a military hotline that was suspended for nearly two years.
Baltimore parents, teachers and students are protesting frigid conditions at public schools, with schoolchildren left shivering in classrooms and temperatures barely rising above freezing. Photos shared widely on social media show children bundled in winter parkas seated on a classroom floor; a high school classroom and a gymnasium left badly damaged after they were flooded by burst pipes; and a thermometer measuring one classroom’s temperature at 42 degrees.
In a letter sent to families, students and staff members on January 2nd, they were told that workers had visited the buildings over the winter break to try to ensure they were ready and that principals are combining classes if one room is colder than another. School uniform rules had been lifted so students could choose warmer outfits.
On January 3rd, the Baltimore Teachers Union president Marietta English sent a letter to Sonja Brookins Santelises, the chief executive officer of Baltimore City Public Schools. The letter was also published in The Baltimore Sun. The letter condemned the conditions as “unfair” and “inhumane” and called on officials to close schools for the rest of the week. According to the letter, students and teachers have endured dangerously low temperatures in buildings that are struggling to operate with bursting boilers and drafty windows. Ms. English wrote “I implore that you close schools in the District until your facilities crew has had time to properly assess and fix the heating issues within the affected schools in Baltimore City.
That day, as temperatures dipped in the low 20’s, four schools were closed and three released their students early because of the heating issues in their buildings. As blizzard conditions raged along the East Coast on January 4th, the closings extended to all Baltimore city schools, as well as those in other major cities including New York City, Boston, Philadelphia and Washington.
After receiving the letter, Santelises published a Facebook Live presentation where she said that as some schools are fixed, others might encounter problems elsewhere in the district, making a request to shut down all the schools an “overly simplistic” measure. “I don’t knee-jerk close anything down just because I have one perspective,” she said. She said that other factors went into the decision to keep schools open despite frigid classroom temps such as considering the impact on students’ access to hot school meals and adult supervision while parents work. Dr. Santelises added “About 60 schools have been affected over the winter break and this week by heating problems, representing about one-third of the schools in the system. Maintenance workers have been sent to schools as the district gets complaints about them and as some fixes are made at some schools, problems arise at others as workers try to keep ahead of the problems. “It is a juggle, and I don’t think we get it perfect every time,” she added.
State Senator Bill Ferguson—a former Baltimore public school teacher—said the city’s schools requested funds for heating and air conditioning but were denied due to “fiscal constraints.” Ferguson blasted Republican Governor Bill Hogan on twitter- writing, “Governor Hogan suggests enough money has gone to Baltimore City, additional resources not needed.”
Twelve people were killed and four critically injured, after a fire broke out in an apartment building in the Bronx borough of New York City. Dozens of other victims were rescued with injuries but were expected to recover. The fast moving fire sent residents running into the freezing temperatures for safety just before 7pm on Thursday.
The fire was started by a three year old boy who had been playing with the burners on the stove in a first floor apartment. The boy’s screams alerted his mother that a fire had erupted. The mother fled the burning apartment with the boy and his 2-year-old sibling, leaving the apartment door open. That fatal mistake allowed the fire to spread quickly through the 5 story building-trapping families on the floors above.
FDNY Commissioner Daniel Nigro said the apartment’s stairway acted “like a chimney” as the fire burst from the apartment, feeding the flames and allowing them to spread throughout the building. The smoke from the fire filled the stairway and halls, quickly cutting off visibility to those trapped inside. The 26-unit apartment building was required to have self-closing doors, which swing shut on their own to keep fires from spreading, city Housing Preservation and Development Department spokesman Matthew Creegan said. Investigators will look at whether the door to the apartment was defective or if an obstruction prevented it from closing, he said.
Killed in the blaze were Maria Batiz, 58; her 8 -month-old grand-daughter Amora Batiz; Gabriel Yaw Sarkookie, 48; Justice Opoku, 54; Solomon Donkor, 49; William Donkor; Hannah Donkor, 17; Shantay Young, 19; Karen Francis, 37; Kylie Francis, 2; Charmela Francis, 7 and Emmanuel Mensah, 28. Mensah, has been hailed a hero for heading back into the fire to save others. Private Mensah, had been home from Army duty for the holiday after finishing basic training in Georgia. His father said he had been awarded a medal for marksmanship and was planning to join the military police. He was scheduled to head to Virginia and from there to battlefields unknown. His sister wept as she said he always put others before himself.
Mensah, lived in Apartment 11, on the 3rd floor with a friend of his father’s who was at home with his wife and four children when the fire broke out. After Mensah got that family to safety, he returned and pulled out four more people. He was last seen heading back into the fire to help others. When he couldn’t be found, family members said they were hoping he was among those injured in the fire. His remains were found in Apartment 15 on the 4th floor.
One family, the Stewarts, lost four family members during the deadly blaze. Karen Stewart-Francis, Kylie Francis, Charmela Francis, and their cousin Shawntay Young were killed. In all, 13 family members — cousins, uncles, aunts – all lived in the building after emigrating from Jamaica between 1980-2004 and deciding to stay close. Another family member, Holt Francis, emerged alive from the deadly mix of smoke and flames, but was put into a medically induced coma with a dire prognosis. Family members say he’s a fighter and the family wasn’t ready to throw in the towel just yet. His wife Karen was killed in the blaze.
A fire at an underground electrical facility caused an 11 hour blackout that brought the world’s busiest airport to a standstill. The blackout at the Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International Airport led to the cancellation of more than 1,500 flights and stranding tens of thousands of people in darkened terminals or on the tarmac, where some passengers sat for more than five hours on grounded planes.
The power outage began shortly after 1 p.m. leaving passengers in dim and overcrowded terminals as afternoon turned to evening. Frustrated travelers lighted their way through smoky corridors with cellphones. On Twitter, passengers reported waiting on the tarmac for more than five hours as the lack of power at the terminals made it hard to de-plane. Getting out of the terminals quickly became difficult as traffic snarled access roads and MARTA trains ran at capacity to downtown.
The train between terminals was shut down and elevators, escalators, automatic doors and baggage carousels stood still. Screens went black and the intercom for flight updates was silent. No one could get reliable phone or internet service to access texts, email, flight apps or social media. With a lack of information, travelers were too nervous to leave their spots, fearing the power might soon return at any moment and they’d lose their place in the line they were in.
Atlanta Mayor Kasim Reed later said the fire was so intense that it damaged two substations serving the airport, including the airport’s back-up power system and prevented emergency crews from accessing the site for two to three hours. Paul Bowers, Georgia Power’s president and CEO said there was a failure in the switchgear that caused the fire and the fire was contained by 3:30pm. An estimated 30,000 people were affected by the power outage.
Delta bore the brunt of the impact, cancelling approximately 900 flights and diverting 48 more. The carrier said about 300 flights would also be cancelled on Monday, as the chaos spilled into one of the busiest air travel weeks of the year. The blackout led the Federal Aviation Administration to declare a ground stop at the airport, preventing Atlanta-bound flights in other airports from taking off and causing inbound flights to be diverted. The ground stop in Atlanta disrupted air travel across the United States.
Some power was restored just before midnight but stranded travelers were still sleeping on the floor the day after the outage. Long ticket and security lines were moving slowly as normalcy began returning to the airport Monday. Volunteers in shirts that said, “Ask Me,” tried to allay concerns and passed out doughnuts to those in line, many of whom shared horror stories about the night before.
Some travelers said airline and airport employees did their best to take care of stranded passengers, handing out blankets, beverages, even slices of pizza. Others reported a lack of communication, widespread rumors, the strong smell of fire near baggage claim and a taxi line that amounted to “pandemonium.” While some fortunate passengers were able to board the flights departing Atlanta the day after the outage, other passengers were being told they’d have to wait hours or days. One airline was telling passengers it would be five days before they could get a flight out.
Facing mounting evidence that Puerto Rico has vastly undercounted the number of people who died because of Hurricane Maria, Gov. Ricardo A. Rosselló ordered that every death on the island since the devastating storm be reviewed. Officials will look review all deaths attributed to natural causes after the hurricane, which made landfall Sept. 20 and knocked out power to 3.4 million Puerto Ricans and to their hospitals and clinics.
Roselló made the order to the Puerto Rico Demographic Registry, which is the island’s vital statistics bureau, and to the Department of Public Safety following the investigative media reports on the death toll and after residents claiming deaths of their loved ones were caused by Maria. The governor also said he’d create an expert panel to review the island’s death certification process.
The Puerto Rican government has put the official death toll at 64 but several investigations have revealed that nearly 1,000 more people died. The prolonged blackout hampered critical medical treatment for some of the island’s most vulnerable patients, including many who were bedridden or dependent on dialysis or respirators. But if they died as a result, the storm’s role in their deaths may have gone officially unrecorded.
Several news organizations, including The New York Times, conducted independent analyses and found that the number of deaths traceable to the storm was far higher than the official count. The Times’s review, based on daily mortality data from Puerto Rico’s vital statistics bureau, found that 1,052 more people than usual had died across the island in the 42 days after Maria struck. The analysis compared daily figures for 2017 with an average of figures for the corresponding days in 2015 and 2016.
The leading causes of death on the island in September were diabetes and Alzheimer’s disease, Puerto Rican government data show. There was a sharp 50 percent spike in the number of recorded deaths from sepsis, a complication of severe infection that can be tied to delayed medical care or poor living conditions. Reports emerged of people being unable to use oxygen and dialysis equipment, unable to refrigerate insulin, evacuated from hospitals that lost emergency power and other problems.
Reviewing the circumstances surrounding each death will require interviewing family members and doctors who signed death certificates to find out if, for example, a heart attack might have been brought on by stress from the hurricane, or might have been fatal because an ambulance could not get through debris-blocked streets in time to help.
The governor’s announcement comes as the Center for Investigative Journalism in Puerto Rico reported that nearly three months since the storm, 45 people are still listed as missing and efforts by Puerto Rico’s police to locate them have been minimal or almost nonexistent. Parts of the island are still without power leaving many to celebrate Christmas in the dark. The power grid is only operating at 70 percent of capacity and officials say power won’t be fully restored until the end of May.
Officials say three people are confirmed dead and 70 injured in the derailment of an Amtrak passenger train that plummeted off an overpass in Washington state. Part of the train was left dangling over a busy freeway between Olympia and DuPont at the height of the Monday morning commute. The high-speed passenger train was on a trip from Seattle to Portland when it derailed. Federal investigators say the Amtrak train was traveling at 80 miles per hour when it barreled off the tracks in a 30-mile-per-hour zone. The accident sent some of the train’s cars tumbling onto the highway below.
The train, identified by Amtrak as the high-speed Train 501 from Seattle to Portland, was carrying 77 passengers and seven crew members when it derailed just after 7:30 a.m. local time. All but one of its cars and engines jumped the tracks and at least one fell to the roadway below. Multiple vehicles on the roadway below were struck by train cars that left the train tracks. Washington Governor Jay Inslee declared a state of emergency to aid the response to the crash, which also clogged one of the state’s busiest roadways, used by some 60,000 people every day.
Amtrak Cascades trains began using a faster, more direct route that day, making this its inaugural trip. Previously, it used to snake along the edge of Puget Sound, which was a slower route but began running on tracks known as the Point Defiance Bypass, which are owned by the Sound Transit agency. The Washington State Department of Transportation says the Federal Railroad Administration funded and reviewed recent upgrades to the tracks. All told, the project’s budget was nearly $181 million.
The change in route was met with criticism from some residents in the area after it was announced. Lakewood Mayor Don Anderson even predicted a deadly accident. “Come back when there is that accident, and try to justify not putting in those safety enhancements, or you can go back now and advocate for the money to do it, because this project was never needed and endangers our citizens” Anderson said.
The National Transportation Safety Board says it’s too early to tell what caused the derailment and that its investigators would spend a week or more scouring the wreckage for clues. Ahead of the crash, the mayor of the city of Lakewood raised safety concerns about the new rail line, predicting earlier this month it could lead to multiple deaths. The train was not utilizing positive train control—a technology mandated by Congress, but rarely operating in Amtrak trains—which could have prevented the crash.
Disney is set to buy a major part of 21st Century Fox for $52.4 billion. Both sides have said it will likely take 12 to 18 months to complete. They will still have to sell the deal to government regulators, who must review the merger to determine its effects on competitors and consumers. That task will likely fall to the Justice Department, which weeks ago took the rare step of suing companies in a different blockbuster deal: AT&T’s bid for Time Warner.
Members of Congress have already stated that they want to hold hearings on Disney’s billion dollar bid to buy 21st Century Fox. Key voices on competition and consumer protection fear the deal will only solidify Disney’s dominance in entertainment — granting it too many major box-office franchises and too much power over regional sports networks and streaming video services. Lawmakers don’t actually have a say in major mergers but they tend to scrutinize them anyways since the Department of Justice investigations happen outside of public view. Hearings-sometimes featuring testimony from major chief executives — can ultimately shape public opinion about the companies’ plans.
If the deal goes through, Disney will own the rights to everything from the Avatar movies to FX’s The Americans. They will also own the film rights to the Marvel comics characters associated with the X-Men and Fantastic Four, which Marvel sold off to Fox long before either was a Disney subsidiary. Federal Communications Commission regulations state that no one company can own more than one broadcast network and since Disney already owns ABC, Fox broadcast network was off the table.
Fox, will maintain the rights to Fox News, Fox Sports 1, the Fox broadcast network and the Fox studio lot in Los Angeles. Fox broadcast network is home to everything from The Simpsons to New Girl to The X-Files. The network launched in 1986 and by the mid-’90s, it was a mainstay in most American homes, competing with ABC, CBS, and NBC.
The massive deal would consolidate two of the biggest players in Hollywood and would reshape the media and entertainment industries. Disney will also get Fox’s 30 percent share of ownership of Hulu in this deal. Disney already owns a 30 percent share so Fox’s share will now make Disney the majority shareholder in Hulu. NBC still owns a 30 percent stake and Warner Bros. owns the remaining 10 percent.
Disney already announced plans for its own streaming business in 2019, which will feature films from Disney and Pixar, content that specifically won’t be available on Netflix. Hulu already has 12 million subscribers so it remains to be seen whether Disney will piggyback their own streaming business with Hulu or just convert Hulu into Disney’s streaming service. Disney’s Marvel and Lucas film franchise will still appear on Netflix as part of a multiyear agreement, but that runs out in a few years and will almost certainly be exclusive to their own streaming service.
Around 1,500 people including, bereaved family and survivors of the deadly Grenfell Tower fire gathered at St. Paul’s Cathedral in London for a memorial service, along with British Prime Minister Theresa May, Labour Leader Jeremy Corbyn and the royal family. The fire killed 71 people when it swept through a poorly built public housing tower and was the worst fire in Britain since World War II. The memorial ceremony lasted just over an hour and at the end of the service, a Grenfell banner was carried out of the cathedral, followed by mourners, who held white roses and photographs of their loved ones.
Of the 293 people believed to be in the 27 story building, 222 escaped; 65 of those survivors were rescued by firefighters. Some residents appear to have moved up the building to escape the flames, only to become trapped in the apartments of friends and neighbours on the upper floors. Twenty one people died on the top floor of the tower block and the fire to raged for 60 hours before finally being contained.
Two days after the disaster, the Prime Minister promised families would be rehoused within three weeks. Six months after the fire, according to a report published by the government, of the 395 households displaced by the fire, 300 were living in hotels, 75 were in apartments, nine were living with friends and family on a temporary basis and only 11 had found new permanent accommodation by the end of September.
Maxine Holdsworth, the official responsible for rehousing the people who lost their homes in the Grenfell Tower fire says Theresa May made and unachievable commitment in the aftermath of the fire. The current promise is that everyone will be rehoused within a year. The number of staff working on rehousing Grenfell tenants has increased since the summer from five to 20. They have been given a budget of $235 million to replace the homes lost in the tower. They are currently in the process of buying 300 new homes, at a rate of two a day, and hope to have done that by Christmas.
A review of building regulations ordered after the Grenfell Tower fire found the system is “not fit for purpose” and open to abuse by those trying to save money. The report into building safety called for an overhaul of the construction industry to put safety above cutting costs. The report called for an end to cost-cutting on materials. It is suspected that an attempt to drive down the price of refurbishing the tower in west London led to cheaper, flammable material being installed on its exterior.
The tower was built in 1974 but was remodeled in 2016. Fire safety experts have pointed to cladding on the building as a possible reason the blaze spread so quickly. New cladding was fitted as part of the refurbishment of the tower in May of last year. Footage has shown the fire travelling up one side of the building, before engulfing the entire block.
New York City police have identified the suspect in the bombing attack in a Midtown Manhattan subway station that took place during the busy Monday morning commute. The accused attacker was identified as 27-year-old Brooklyn resident and Bangladeshi immigrant Akayed Ullah. Ullah was carrying a pipe bomb strapped to his body with Velcro and zip ties whe he detonated it in a tunnel connecting the busy Port Authority and Times Square terminals. Five people were treated for minor injuries at area hospitals, while the suspect was said to be seriously injured.
Investigators have been pouring over surveillance footage of the area. Ullah was first spotted on a security camera as he climbed the subway station stairs to the 18th Avenue F. train platform in Brooklyn at 6:25 a.m. He then switched to the A train at Jay St./MetroTech stop in Brooklyn before exiting the train at the Port Authority Bus Terminal stop in Manhattan.
The blast detonated around 7:20 a.m. in an underground walkway connecting two subway lines beneath the Port Authority Bus Terminal, near Times Square, which accommodates 220,000 passenger trips a day. Surveillance footage shows commuters walking through a tunnel when a burst of smoke erupts into the hallway, quickly filling it. Commuters flinch and take cover, and when the smoke clears, an injured man, Ullah, can be seen lying on the ground in the hallway.
Law enforcement officials say Ullah was inspired to set off a bomb in retaliation for U.S. attacks against ISIS in Syria. He faces five federal terrorism-related charges and three state terrorism-related charges after he allegedly detonated the homemade device made of a battery, wires, metal screws and a Christmas tree lightbulb during the busy morning commute. According to Department of Homeland Security, Ullah is a Bangladeshi immigrant who has been living in the United States since 2011 on an F43 family immigrant visa. He is a legal permanent resident living in Brooklyn and has no criminal record in the United States.
According to a federal complaint, Ullah admitted to investigators that he built and detonated the device and said he was inspired to do so by ISIS. He said that he was prepared to die and told investigators he was motivated in part by pro-ISIS Christmas attack propaganda circulated about a month ago online with an image of Santa Claus over Times Square. Investigators recovered a passport in his name with a handwritten message: “O America, die in your rage.” Investigators say Ullah’s ISIS radicalization began in 2014 and he began researching how to build improvised explosive devices about a year ago. He began collecting the necessary items to make the device two to three weeks ago, and built the bomb in his home a week ago.
According to law enforcement officials, Ullah had two homemade devices with him but they did not elaborate on the second device. Andrew Cuomo said in an interview that the device was an amateur, “effectively low-tech device” that partially detonated. The explosive chemical ignited, but the pipe itself did not explode, lessening its impact. Cuomo added “Fortunately for us, the bomb partially detonated, he did detonate it, but it did not fully have the effect that he was hoping for.”
4 weeks ago ·
by HealthInsurance4Everyone ·
Comments Off on Daily HI4E.org Trivia Contest Winners For The Week Ending: Sunday, December 17th, 2017
In an effort to broaden the company’s “social interaction” with our clients and FaceBook fans, Daily Trivia Questions are posted on both of our business pages. Here are the weekly standings for this past week, and the winner of the Sunday night Weekly Drawing for an AmEx gift card!
Congratulations – To this past week’s Trivia Contest Winner!! Our latest contest winner for the weekly FaceBook HealthInsurance4Everyone/Health & Life Solutions, LLC Trivia Contest, drawn randomly by computer late Sunday evening, December 17th, 2017 was:
CRYSTAL DOUGHERTY MERRILL
Winner Of A $25.00 AmEx Gift Card
Each day, fans who have “liked” either of our company FaceBook pages (HealthInsurance4Everyone or Health & Life Solutions LLC) are able to test their skills with our Daily TRIVIA QUESTION. The first 20 winners who post the correct answer to the TRIVIA QUESTION, will then get entered into the weekly drawing held late on Sunday evenings for a $25.00 Am Ex Gift Card.
Weekly Gift Card winners will be posted in our blog at this site. Remember to become a FaceBook “fan” on either of our company pages to enter and post your answers.
Here are the daily contestants from last week’s Trivia Contest that were entered into the Sunday drawing:
Sunney Michelle Johnson
Helen Saez Deverter
Melissa D’Ornellas Curtis
Debbie Burke Garretson
Mary Ann Cody
Angie Cantrell Jenks
Tiffany Greene Elliott
Karen Goodwin Delaney
Amanda Nicole Young
Cheryl Reagin Burns
Debbie Burke Garretson
Emily Rice Bowersock
Melissa D’Ornellas Curtis
Lisa David Carr
Kendra Lynne Ramsey
Carla M. Williams
Mary Ann Cody
Melissa Ann Stura-Bassett
Pamela White Brearley
Tiffany Greene Elliott
Crystal Dougherty Merrill
Emily Rice Bowersock
Mary Alice Ford
Carla M. Williams
Crystal Dougherty Merrill
Sarah Bellestri Shih
Michelle R. Carlino
Jean Simmons Homfeld
Karen Brunet Moore
Be sure to watch both of our FaceBook pages for your chance to win and enter again next week, with questions posted daily on HealthInsurance4Everyone or at Health & Life Solutions, LLC!!
Remember that if you try your hand at answering the Trivia Question several days each week, your odds of winning the Sunday weekly drawing are much better. Also note that a number of the posted answers each day are from contestants who have forgotten to “Like” one of our pages, so their names WILL NOT be entered at the end week drawing for the gift card, giving our fans a better chance!
You may also find that if you “Like” BOTH of the business pages, you will receive faster notifications of the other players as they post their answers to compete with you!
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