Lawmakers grill FAA chief over safety questions involving Boeing 737 Max 8

first_imgStephen Brashear/Getty Images(WASHINGTON) — Lawmakers on Wednesday grilled the head of the Federal Aviation Administration over how his agency handled the safety certification of the Boeing 737 MAX 8 following two crashes that left more than 340 people dead.Acting Administrator Daniel Elwell faced questions from members of the House Transportation Committee about the FAA’s role in approving the now grounded plane.“The FAA has a credibility problem,” said House Transportation subcommittee chairman Rep. Rick Larsen, D-W.Va. “The FAA must take steps to restore the public’s confidence.”“In the U.S., the 737 MAX will return to service only when the FAA’s analysis of the facts and technical data indicate that it is safe to do so,” Elwell said in his opening remarks. Wednesday’s hearing marked the first in a series of investigations into why regulators or Boeing did not require pilots to go through training for the scrutinized automated safety system suspected in playing a critical role in the two crashes and why that system wasn’t detailed in the plane’s flight manual prior to the Lion Air crash in Indonesia last fall. An Ethiopian Airlines 737 MAX 8 crashed in March.The MCAS, or Maneuvering Characteristics Augmentation System, is designed to automatically drop the nose of the aircraft if sensors mounted on the nose of the aircraft detect the plane potentially entering a stall, a dangerous situation for an aircraft at low altitude.“How can we have a single point of failure in a modern aircraft?” Rep. Peter DeFazio, D-Ore., asked in his opening statements.He said the the parents of 24-year-old Samya Stumo – killed in the Ethiopia Airlines crash were in the audience.“Their daughter was flying from Ethiopia to Kenya for work when Ethiopian Airlines Flight 302 went down,” DeFazio said. “They deserve answers and accountability, as does the general flying public.”This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.Copyright © 2019, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

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Coronavirus live updates: New York governor gets personal, preaches kindness in time of ‘chaos’

first_imgSamara Heisz/iStock(NEW YORK) — States are shutting down restaurants, bars, gyms and schools to try to stop the spread of the novel coronavirus, which has killed at least 92 people in the United States.There are at least 4,661 confirmed cases in the country. COVID-19 has reached 49 states, Washington, D.C., and Puerto Rico.Globally, there are more than 187,600 coronavirus cases and more than 7,400 deaths, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. Here’s how the news is unfolding today. All times Eastern. Please refresh for updates.11:17 a.m.: 8th TSA officer tests positiveA TSA officer at Cleveland Hopkins International Airport has tested positive for COVID-19.The officer’s last work day was March 17, the agency said.This marks the 8th TSA officer to test positive for COVID-19. The other cases are in California, Florida and Georgia.With the coronavirus outbreak, the TSA has screened 5 million fewer people in the first two weeks of March 2020 compared to 2019.10:55 a.m.: New York governor preaches kindness in time of ‘chaos’In New York state — home to 19.5 million people — all schools are closed for two weeks.Restaurants in the state are restricted to only takeout and delivery. Bars and gyms are also shuttered, and more closings statewide could help continue to flatten the curve, New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Tuesday.Twelve people have died in New York state. The state has 1,374 cases of coronavirus.Cuomo said he’s worried the rising number of cases will crash the health care system, noting the 19% hospitalization rate among those infected.“We have to get down that rate of spread,” he said. “We cannot accommodate the numbers that demand on the hospital system.”Cuomo said the state is working to create more space in hospitals and temporarily build other facilities to house the sick.The governor then got personal, opening up at his news conference about how difficult it is to not see and hug his own daughter during this time of “chaos.” “It is a hard time on every level,” he said. “It is a frightening time on every level.”He urged New Yorkers to “be a little bit more loving, a little bit more compassionate, a little bit more comforting, a little bit more cooperative. And we will get through this time.”“We will lose people, yes. Like we lose people every year with the flu,” Cuomo said. “We’re gonna be challenged and tested.”Cuomo also stressed that the federal government needs to do more. “We cannot do this on our own,” he said.Cuomo made a point to thank President Donald Trump for his partnership, saying he spoke to the president Tuesday morning.On Monday, Trump had a tele-conference with the country’s governors.9:34 a.m.: San Francisco Bay Area goes on lockdownSix counties in the San Francisco Bay Area are moving forward with isolation procedures, ordering residents to shelter in place for non-essential activities.At least 12 people have died from coronavirus in California.Gov. Gavin Newsom is closing all dine-in restaurants, health clubs and gyms in the Golden State. Newsom also told residents they should stop gathering in groups entirely for the foreseeable future.8:10 a.m. Millennials must protect older generations, says Dr. BirxWhite House coronavirus response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx stressed that “the army of millennials” must be taking “every single precaution to protect their parents and grandparents.”“If you look at every large city across America at the census bar graph, you’ll see that in every single case the largest numbers, about 22% in many cities, are millennials,” Birx said Tuesday in an interview with ABC News’ Good Morning America.She went on, “The millennials are incredibly good about getting information out in a clear way, but more importantly, they are incredibly good about understanding how to protect one another, how to protect their parents and how to protect their grandparents. Right now we need the army of millennials out there doing everything that they can to protect themselves from getting infected because we know a lot of their cases will be mild or asymptomatic, and making sure that they’re doing every single precaution to protect their parents and grandparents.”Dr. Birx also compared the new pandemic to the fight against HIV/AIDS. “We know a lot more than we knew in the early days of HIV,” she said. “It was really inspiring to me to watch people who were sick themselves going to the street not because it was going to help them but because it would help the group coming behind them. They were already too ill. I guess that’s what I’m asking every American to do now, to do whatever they can to help the Americans ahead of them, to make sure they don’t get infected.”6:16 a.m. Iran says new coronavirus has killed 135 more peopleIran says new coronavirus has killed 135 more people, a 13% spike that has raised the death toll to 988 amid 16,169 total infections.6:04 a.m. France goes into lockdown at noonIn his address to the nation on Monday evening, President Emmanuel Macron announced that from noon on Tuesday, “and for at least a fortnight”, trips for French citizens and residents will be greatly reduced.“Outdoor gatherings, family or friendly gatherings will no longer be allowed, meeting friends in the park, family, in the street will not be possible” he added, advising French people to “read”, “find a sense of the essential” and “the meaning of things”.Interior Minister Christophe Castaner stated later in the night that all pedestrians, commuters, passengers and drivers must be able to justify their trips with a downloadable document attesting on one’s honor the reason for one’s trip. It will be up to everyone to fill it out to specify the nature of their trip.“The watchword is clear,” Castaner said. “Stay at home. These are confinement measures along the lines of our Italian and Spanish neighbors.”The penalty for infraction to these rules will be a 38 Euro ($42 U.S.) fine, which will be quickly raised to a higher level of 135 Euros.Exceptions are made for when these trips are essential for activities which cannot be interrupted. For work when telecommuting is not possible, for seeking health care, for imperative family reasons, to come to the aid of a dependent relative for example or for separate parents. Other exceptions are allowed for short trips, to take out your dog or have a physical activity.“But without grouping into a group”, Castaner warned. “To put it simply, I would say we can get some air yes, but certainly not play a soccer match,” he stated.5:52 a.m. Tom Hanks and Rita Wilson have been released from hospital and placed into self-isolationChet Hanks, son of Tom Hanks and stepson to Rita Wilson, confirmed that his parents have been released from the hospital in a video posted to Instagram.“They’re still self-quarantined obviously, but they’re feeling a lot better so that’s a relief,” Chet Hanks said.5:21 a.m. China’s Foreign Ministry says Trump “Chinese Virus” tweet a “smear”China Foreign Ministry spokesperson Geng Shuang, not mentioning President Donald Trump by name, called the tweet “a smear” and that China “expresses its strong anger and opposition to that.”“Some politicians in the U.S. associated the coronavirus with China, and smeared China. China expresses its strong anger and opposition to that,” Shuang said on Tuesday. “We call on the U.S. to stop finger pointing at China. The utmost priority is for the international community to cooperate on fighting the virus. The U.S. should focus on its top priority, and play a constructive role in international cooperation on health security.”5:00 a.m. Russia mobilizes to shield economy from impact of coronavirusWith a total of 93 recorded cases so far, Russia’s government is moving to prepare a broad spectrum of measures to try to shield the country’s economy from the impact of the coronavirus outbreak.In addition to a $4 billion support fund, the state will also increase state guarantees for some companies by enlarging the list of firms deemed strategically important. It is looking at delaying tax payments, as well as penalties for businesses, as well as short-term loans. The Russian rouble currency has strengthened in response to some of the announcements.Russia’s foreign ministry has also called on the U.S. to lift sanctions on Iran that it says are preventing it from combating the coronavirus outbreak effectively. Iran has recently said it is suffering from a shortage of key medical equipment and medicines needed due to the sanctions imposed as part of the U.S.’ “maximum pressure” campaign. Russia’s foreign ministry has accused the U.S. of putting millions of Iranians at risk and called on it to lift them immediately and end its “inhuman policy”.3:57 a.m. Dutch Prime Minister announces opposition to nationwide lockdown, calls it “impractical”The Netherlands will not impose a national lockdown over coronavirus because it would have to be in place for too long to make a difference, Dutch Prime Minister Mark Rutte said on TV on Monday.“It wouldn’t be a matter of days or weeks. In that scenario, we would actually have to shut down our country for a year, or even longer, with all the consequences that follow,” he added.1:10 a.m. San Francisco Police Department going door to door to make sure bars and clubs are complying with public health orderThe San Francisco Police Department tweeted that they would be visiting bars and clubs throughout the city to make sure they are in compliance with the city’s public heath order.California Gov. Gavin Newsom issued the directive to shut down all of the state’s bars, clubs, breweries and taprooms on Sunday when he announced the virus had killed six people in California.“These are profoundly significant steps and they are significant steps from two days ago,” Newsom said in a news conference. “We’re guided deeply by what’s happening, not just by anxiety, not just by fear, but by a very pragmatic response to meet this moment without creating other unintended consequences.”Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. 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Depolarization of radio waves can distinguish between floating and grounded ice sheets

first_imgPolar ice is now thought to be marginally birefringent at radio echo-sounding frequencies. An experiment on the polarization behaviour of 60 MHz radio echoes from the bed of both ice shelf and land ice in Antarctica showed a marked difference in the returned polarization. It appears that differences in electrical properties or roughness of the reflecting boundary cannot explain our results. We suggest that there is a large change in the birefringence of the ice sheet at the hinge zone, caused by the effect of tidal strain on crystal orientation. This would imply a minimum value of the radio-frequency anisotropy in permittivity for the single crystal of (0.52±0.8)%. Therefore polarization changes could allow floating and grounded ice to be distinguished.last_img

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Snack attack!

first_imgWe all talk about meal occasions, dashboard dining and grazing, but there is a huge opportunity to increase our daily sales by a third. Did you know that 30% of our customers visiting cafés, bakeries or convenience stores are looking to enjoy a snack in between meals? Our colleagues at market research firm him! also tell us that breakfast makes up 9% of bakery sales between 6am and 10am. The majority of customers still want and need to take a break from their busy routines. But how do you capitalise on that? According to him!, bakery customers spend up to £5.26 in one visit, which can relate to three items. Knowing this, all you need to do is make it easy for your customers to link the products together. Ensure your displays are full and fresh for your busiest parts of the day. Introduce parasite units baskets or containers that fit on to front of counters, displays and shelving to merchandise savoury or healthy snacks, multigrain bars, energy drinks, fruit, nuts and impulse indulgent cakes to tempt customers and increase that average spend. It’s so easy for the customer to say “Yes”, when the goods are right in front of them. So what does the perfect snack offer look like? According to him!’s Coffee Shop Report ’09, 54% of the bakery consumers are health-conscious, 31% would like information about calorific and fat content, with a further 23% interested in nutritional information.”But what about bakery?” we hear you cry. Well, those products can be healthy too. For instance, why not introduce a freshly baked cereal bar with a smoothie in a meal deal combination. Moreover, 34% of the bakery customers would consider buying a hot soup, which is a perfect snack to offer with rich seeded breads during the cold winter months ahead. Take a healthier look at your offer and consider how to introduce snack deals, porridge, soups and seeded breads, freshly baked cereal bars, fruit & nuts the list is endless,Finally, to encourage even more customers in, you may want to consider a small but perfectly formed chill-out area and overwhelm your guests with best-in-class customer service, so that, when that snack attack strikes, they’ll take a break with you!last_img read more

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Greggs set to reopen 800 shops in June following trial

first_imgGreggs is to reopen around 800 shops from 18 June following a successful trial in the north east.The business announced it was in the process of selecting the shops to reopen, which would include around 150 franchise stores. It said it hoped to have all shops open by 1 July.The shops will reopen with new tested operational measures in place as well as a reduced range, which Greggs said would be a “significant step” in getting the nation back up and running and serving the communities in which it operates.The news comes after Boris Johnson this weekend announced that non-essential shops could reopen from 15 June.Greggs has recently opened a selection of shops on an ad-hoc basis in the north east, where it trialled delivery, collection and standard walk-in orders. Its original plans were changed after news of reopenings attracted widespread coverage leading to concerns stores could be mobbed by fans.“This was so we could test out new operational safety measures to roll out on a wider scale when the time is right,” CEO Roger Whiteside said in a statement on the company’s website.“The trials have been performing well, providing useful feedback from colleagues and customers, and we’ll continue to adapt as we learn more and work to the latest government advice.”last_img read more

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Hard on the ears

first_imgResearchers at Harvard-affiliated Brigham and Women’s Hospital (BWH) have determined that hearing loss in adolescents has increased over the past 15 years. Their findings are to be published Wednesday (Aug. 18) in the Journal of the American Medical Association.Hearing loss is a common and underrecognized public health problem that can influence a child’s educational, psychological, and social development. However, until now little was known about changes to the prevalence of adolescent hearing loss over time.“We have known for a few years that hearing loss is very common in U.S. adults,” said lead study author Josef Shargorodsky, a physician-investigator at the Channing Laboratory at BWH. “However, an understanding of hearing loss in adolescents can help to paint a better picture of overall hearing loss in the U.S., and aid in further identifying potential causes of hearing loss.”The researchers looked at data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey of adolescents (12 to 19 years old) from across the United States, finding that one of five adolescents has some evidence of hearing loss, while one of 20 has at least mild hearing loss. Compared with survey data from 1988 to 1994, there has been a 30 percent increase in prevalence of any hearing loss, and a 70 percent increase in mild or worse hearing loss, in the past 15 years.“What makes hearing loss in adolescents even more concerning is previous research showing that teens underestimate the importance of hearing and the dangers of noise exposure, and don’t make protecting their hearing a priority,” said Shargorodsky, a clinical fellow in otology and laryngology at Harvard Medical School.The researchers also found that hearing loss is more prevalent in adolescent males than females and more common in adolescents living below the poverty level. “Further research is needed to better understand the causes of hearing loss, why it’s increasing in prevalence, and why it affects some populations more than others,” said Shargorodsky.Researchers hope this study will encourage efforts among teens and adults to prevent hearing loss.The study was funded by the Massachusetts Eye and Ear Infirmary Foundation and Vanderbilt University School of Medicine Development Funds.last_img read more

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Saint Mary’s students confront immigration

first_imgStudents discussed legal and illegal immigration at Saint Mary’s College on Friday as part of the discussion-based Justice Friday’s series. Notre Dame senior Juan Rangel and Saint Mary’s senior Dara Marquez led the conversation, asking students and faculty to consider their familiarity with the subject of immigration.Rangel, head of the Notre Dame immigration advocacy club, said he immigrated to the United States at a very young age but upon coming to Notre Dame, he realized  immigration was not widely discussed amongst students.“I realized that not a lot of people were aware of the issue,” he said. “Now I study immigration policy. On campus, I started a new advocacy club on immigration for immigration advocacy. I have also been active during my summers working for the Church in Chicago on immigration issues. This past summer I [was] in D.C. working on immigration policy.”Marquez said the discussion began with an assessment of legal and illegal immigration in the United States. The audience shared their knowledge of illegal immigration based on their familiarity with media stories and personal experiences similar to Rangel’s.The issue of the influx of migrant children from Central America came up quickly, Marquez said.“That was a big thing, [and] it still is regarding migrant children,” she said. “I know right now there a lot of loose ends with that [in] different areas.”Many migrants risk their lives traveling to the border based on information passed on by word of mouth that border patrol will allow them access if they are considered refugees, Marquez said.“If you were to get caught crossing the border, if you were a woman or child, then they would let you go,” she said. “Different migrants were saying that was happening, [and] that could be a loophole.”Instead of running away from border patrol agents, Rangel said migrants were willingly approaching the authorities, hoping they would be taken in and provided with care.“They first go into similar detention centers,” she said. “They are turning military bases into housing facilities for children until they are able to return them to family members or the courts.”Rangel said the Trafficking Victims Protection Reauthorization Act (TVPRA), a policy meant to clarify refugee status, was reauthorized in 2008. The bill enacted new human trafficking crimes, enhanced victim service provisions and strengthened the role of the Trafficking in Persons Office within the State Department.In order to be considered under refugee status, Rangel said migrants must present a legitimate reason for fleeing.“It was more of the conservative side [who] were proposing the change to adjust the issue and address the courts crisis that is occurring in the country right now,” he said. “A lot of these children did have refugee status when they were heard out. Five, 6 and 7-year-old children [are] asked to defend themselves. At this point, court cases are three years in advance.”The criteria for refugee status is considered hazy in terms of qualifications, Rangel said.“Technically, it would have to be discrimination based on criteria,” he said. “They found that the lawyers who were representing some of these kids were able to make connections to discrimination. Only 10 percent without lawyers were able to do that.”Marquez said deportation is another topic at large in the United States when it comes to immigration policy.“Aside from refugee children, there’s also the perspective of deportation, and there’s also the perspective of students,” she said. “They can’t receive financial aid. They couldn’t work legally in the country. They can’t get a driver’s license. Just recently, an executive order by the president said any undocumented student who fulfilled this criteria met the legal status.”With the executive order issued by President Obama, Marquez said students must meet a certain level of education with no criminal background.“Then they [are] able to obtain a temporary social security number,” she said. “You are able to renew it every two years as long as that policy’s active. There are some students who have already graduated college [and] can’t use their degree until deferred action.”Despite these temporary securities, Marquez said she is still considered undocumented in the eyes of the law.“My personal story is that I actually crossed through the port of entry when I was three years old,” she said. “U.S. citizens would sell the birth certificates of their children as ours.”Marquez said she encouraged the students to listen to the stories of other migrants in the future in order to not only consider the point of social justice, but also to learn from additional experiences.“There’s all these different perspectives on illegal immigration,” she said. “It’s just difficult for humans to have that piece of metal being the only thing that separates you. It kind of disrespects your own human dignity.”Tags: border patrol, Immigration, immigration advocacy, Justice Fridays, Mexico, policylast_img read more

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Guatemala Has Destroyed 28.5 Million Poppy Plants This Year

first_img Guatemalan anti-narcotics forces have destroyed around 28.5 million poppy plants, the raw material for manufacturing heroin, in an area on the border with Mexico, the police announced on 23 February. The eradication took place between 14 and 18 February in the municipalities of Tajumulco and Ixchiguan, in San Marcos, around 280 km northwest of the capital, on the border with Mexico, the police specified in a statement. In contrast, the authorities only reported the seizure of 207 kilos of cocaine, including 90 kilos seized on the night of 22 February on the highway to the Pacific (in southern Guatemala), where two Guatemalans were detained. The police also announced that 228 people have been detained in connection with drug trafficking, while thirty-one vehicles of various kinds and nineteen firearms have been seized so far this year, according to data from the Anti-narcotics Information Analysis Division (DAIA). At the same time, the agency reported the seizure of 45 kilos of ephedrine and 83.79 kilos of pseudoephedrine, substances used to manufacture Ecstasy and other synthetic drugs, since January. According to data from the U.S. embassy in Guatemala, the Central American country is the world’s sixth-largest producer of opium paste (derived from poppies) for the manufacture of morphine and heroin. By Dialogo February 25, 2011last_img read more

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Real estate prices are up 4 percent from the same month last year

first_imgAccording to research portal Njuškalo.hr   conducted on a sample of 156 thousand active real estate ads, their prices in Croatia are growing rapidly on an annual basis, so they are higher by 4 percent compared to the same period last year.If the current data is compared with the same month last year, apartments have risen in price by 6 and a half percent, while houses are as much as 4 percent more expensive. However, the news is that prices in July this year exceeded those of 2011, which leads to the conclusion that the crisis in the Croatian real estate sector is far behind us and that we may face a real price “boom” in the near future.“Our Real Estate category is the largest online real estate market in the Republic of Croatia and, with almost 3 million visits, the most visited real estate database for sale and rent. Interest in real estate in the Republic of Croatia is growing from year to year, so in July Njuškalo recorded an increase in visits in this category on an annual basis by almost 4 percent. ” stand out from Njuškalo.Looking at the counties in which real estate is most in demand, the City of Zagreb is in first place, while right behind it are the Split-Dalmatia, Primorje-Gorski Kotar and Zadar counties.Apartment prices in the largest Croatian cities have been growing rapidly in the last year. Thus, in Zagreb, the current average price per square meter of an apartment is 1.873 euros and is 9 percent higher compared to the same period last year. The largest annual increase in apartment prices in Croatia, as expected, was recorded in Dubrovnik. There, the average asking price per square meter of an apartment is 3.643 euros, and it is 18 percent higher than last year. The average price per square meter of a house in Dubrovnik has grown by 4 percent annually and currently stands at 4.684 euros.Apartment prices in Split rose by 11 percent and in Pula by almost 12 percentThe average asking price per square meter of an apartment in Split is 2.665 euros, while in Pula it is 1.570 euros. Osijek is still one of the cities where real estate prices are stagnating, so in July the average asking price there was 942 euros.A square meter of an apartment in Croatia is 38 percent more expensive than a square meter of a houseThus, in Zagreb, the square footage of a house recorded a growth of only 1 percent on an annual level, while in Osijek and Zadar, prices remained at the level of last year. The largest annual increase in the price of square meters of houses in Croatia from larger cities was recorded in Split and amounted to as much as 13 percent.The average asking price per square meter of an apartment in Zadar is 2.027 euros and is 11 percent higher than last year, while at the same time the average price per square meter of a house stagnates and amounts to 1.485 euros. As a rule, real estate on the coast and in Zagreb achieves a higher price, while in Slavonia the lowest real estate prices are recorded, so in Slavonski Brod, for example, the average price per square meter is 801 euros, while the average price per square meter is 643 euros. Even cheaper are Vinkovci, where an average of 710 euros will be needed for a square meter of an apartment, while the average price of a square meter of a house with a yard is around 200 euros more favorable than an apartment.Of the larger Croatian cities, Dubrovnik and Split are the only cities where square meters of houses are more expensive than square meters of apartments. This is mostly due to the high share of luxury houses in these cities, they conclude from Njuškalo.Source: Njuškalo.hrlast_img read more

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Chicago firm Equis jockeys for position in UK market

first_imgTo access this article REGISTER NOWWould you like print copies, app and digital replica access too? SUBSCRIBE for as little as £5 per week. Would you like to read more?Register for free to finish this article.Sign up now for the following benefits:Four FREE articles of your choice per monthBreaking news, comment and analysis from industry experts as it happensChoose from our portfolio of email newsletterslast_img

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