Driver abandons school bus full of kids while taking them home

first_imgABC News/WABC-TV(NEW YORK) — A bus driver with a suspended license allegedly abandoned a bus full of children in the middle of dropping them off at their homes after school.The incident occurred on Feb. 6 in Newark, New Jersey, when the bus driver just stopped dropping students off from Avon Avenue School in Newark, in the middle of her bus route and instead drove to her home in another city, parked the bus and walked got out, according to ABC News’ New York City station WABC-TV. “She told the bus attendant that you gonna have to handle these kids yourself,” said 11-year-old Amber Easterling, one of the 14 students who were suddenly left abandoned.Amber’s mother, Angele Easterling, who was worried sick waiting at home for her daughter’s arrival after school at the time, is furious.“I was cleaning up, getting my daughter’s food ready for dinner and I realized it was four o’clock and she wasn’t home,” Angele Easterling told WABC. “I’m still sick on my stomach because, right now, I’m not letting my daughter take the bus to school … I’m just mad about it because, you know, there are a lot of things happening out here on the street, kids getting missing.”Police officers responded to calls of the abandoned school bus around 4:30 p.m. after having missed designated stops at the children’s homes and ended up locating the bus in the Vailsburg area of Newark.The children were taken to a police precinct and waited there until the children’s parents were able to pick them up.The bus company is Mercy USA, located in East Orange, New Jersey, but, when contacted by media, refused to answer any questions about the incident.Newark Public Schools released a statement, saying Mercy USA’s contract has now been canceled:“The District has removed this vendor from transporting students to Avon Avenue School and is in the process of determining next steps regarding future services. In addition, because established guidelines were not adhered to, the District has also imposed liquated financial damages for this infraction. This continues to be an active investigation.”The bus driver was eventually located and issued a summons for driving with a suspended license. Police say that she was reportedly unfamiliar with the route.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Wisconsin couple killed execution-style by daughter’s boyfriend, prosecutors say

first_imgDane County Sheriff’s Office(MADISON, Wisc.) — A judge in Madison, Wisconsin, has set $1 million bail for two teenagers charged with the execution-style murders of a respected doctor and an education coach.During the early morning hours of March 31, two joggers came upon the bodies of Dr. Beth Potter and her husband, Robin Carre, lying off the roadway in the University of Wisconsin Arboretum and covered in blood, police said. A witness told the University of Wisconsin-Madison Police Department that they had heard a series of gunshots after 11 p.m. the night before.Carre, 57, was pronounced dead at the scene as Potter, 52, was taken to a nearby hospital where she later died. Both were shot in the head and were left for dead in their house clothes with no shoes, according to the criminal complaint.Investigators conducted several interviews that led them to arrest and charge Khari Sanford, the boyfriend of the couple’s adopted daughter, and Sanford’s friend Ali’Jah Larrue with two counts of first-degree murder. Sanford and Larrue made their court appearance on Tuesday via video conference, where a plea was not entered for the felony charges.The day before the couple was murdered, Potter confided in a friend that they had moved her adopted daughter, Miriam Potter Carre, and Sanford into an Airbnb because they weren’t abiding by the rules of COVID-19 social distancing, according to the criminal complaint.Potter, a doctor at University of Wisconsin Hospital and Clinics, had a greater risk of infection because of medications she was taking, and she was concerned about the teenagers going in and out of the house, the complaint said.“You don’t care about me,” Potter Carre allegedly told her mother as they were being moved out.Police say when they questioned Potter Carre about the night of March 30, she told them that she had stayed at the rental property with Sanford and that she had fallen asleep after watching a movie. But traffic cameras captured her parents’ van driving by the crime scene, and a forensic search of Potter Carre’s cell phone showed that she was not with Sanford at that time, according to the criminal complaint.Potter Carre allegedly told police that she loved her boyfriend and was extremely loyal to him. Dane County Prosecutors did not respond to a request for comment on whether Potter Carre was implicated in her parents’ death.When police caught up with Larrue, he told them that he was friends and classmates with Sanford and Potter Carre.Larrue allegedly told police that before schools were closed due to the pandemic, he had overheard Sanford and Potter Carre talking in ceramics class about getting money from her parents, who “were rich,” according to the criminal complaint.Sanford allegedly identified Larrue as an accomplice who, in turn, gave police permission to analyze his phone activity, according to the criminal complaint.Sanford’s attorneys, Diana Maria Van Rybroek and Crystal Vera, declined to comment on the case Tuesday evening. Requests for comment from Larrue’s attorney were not returned. Sanford and Larrue’s next court date is April 16.The families of Potter and Carre are anticipating establishing a memorial fund to provide resources for community activities that were important to the couple, according to the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health website.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

White woman who pointed gun at a Black mom and her teen daughter charged with assault

first_imgOakland County Sheriff’s OfficeBy FREDA KAHEN-KASHI and KELLY MCCARTHY, ABC News(NEW YORK) — A white woman and her husband have been charged with assault after she was seen pointing a gun at a Black mother and her teenage daughter in a now-viral video.Michigan authorities discussed the altercation during a press conference on Thursday, where they explained that the conflict started after an alleged bumping incident at a Chipotle restaurant in Orion Township.“Two very different stories from two different groups. Both sides claiming they feel extremely threatened,” Oakland County Sheriff Michael Bouchard said. The video, posted on Facebook by Takela Hill on Wednesday, shows an interaction during which Hill claims Jillian Wuestenberg, 32, had just bumped into her 15-year-old daughter.Wuestenberg claimed she was being blocked from entering her car before her husband, Eric Wuestenberg, 42, was seen on video helping usher her into the vehicle.The couple and Hill argued and exchanged racial accusations before Hill appeared to move behind the couple’s vehicle.Hill says the couple tried hitting her as they reversed out of their parking spot, according to authorities. Jillian Wuestenberg accuses Hill of striking her car. Bouchard said officers saw an open handprint on the car.Jillian Wuestenberg then exited the car and brandished a gun, pointing it at Hill several times.Bouchard said the deputies who arrived on the scene did their job to keep everyone safe.“They stabilized the scene, initially handcuffing the woman, taking the weapons into custody and then beginning an investigation,” he said.Bouchard also said he “ordered all necessary resources” to help gather all the information that could help them “investigate the totality of circumstances with all the facts.”“For example, were there other witnesses? Were there other cameras on other buildings, viewpoints or angles that could give us other angles and corroborate either side’s story?” he said. “Unlike the internet, we have to gather all the facts and not just have snippets. So, this is what’s been gathered so far.”Bouchard said they listened to the 911 call and corroborated the timeline with responding deputies as well as witness accounts.If Wuestenberg and her husband are convicted of felony assault, they could face up to four years in jail.Responding to the incident, Oakland County executive Dave Coulter said, “I am deeply disturbed by an incident last night where a woman pointed a cocked gun at another woman during an argument. This behavior is unacceptable. I wholly expect the prosecutor to bring charges that reflect the severity of the incident.”Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

After Isaias rocks Each Coast, more storms on the way

first_imgABC NewsBy DANIEL MANZO, ABC News(NEW YORK) — Along the East Coast, where millions are still without power thanks to Hurricane and Tropical Storm Isaias, the region is set to get more rain in the coming days. Already Thursday morning, a round of storms is moving through parts of Maryland and Virginia. These storms are headed off to Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey in the next few hours.A new flash flood watch has been issued for the region because parts of the area received 7-9 inches of rain from Isaias. In eastern Pennsylvania, rivers are just beginning to recede from elevated levels due to the excessive rainfall. Any additional rain could cause flash flooding. As of 10 p.m. Wednesday, more than 2.1 million customers were still without power along the East Coast. Those numbers are particularly bad in New York, New Jersey and Connecticut, where each state has more than 600,000 customers without power.High-resolution models are showing that some of the storms will likely make it into the New York City metro area by Friday, where localized flooding will be possible. Then it appears another wave of strong storms will arrive early Saturday morning in parts of New Jersey, eastern Pennsylvania and perhaps New York City.These storms could bring 3 to 4 inches of rain to parts of the Mid-Atlantic, especially northern Virginia to southern New Jersey, which means the flooding threat could last for the next few days.Meanwhile out west, a fire threat remains from Arizona to Montana due to dry and gusty winds. In Nevada, the dry air and lightning pose a risk for fires. Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

New data suggests COVID-19 surge could be leveling off, FEMA says

first_imgOvidiu Dugulan/iStockBy MORGAN WINSOR, EMILY SHAPIRO and MEREDITH DELISO, ABC News(NEW YORK) — A pandemic of the novel coronavirus has now killed more than 696,000 people worldwide.Over 18.3 million people across the globe have been diagnosed with COVID-19, the disease caused by the new respiratory virus, according to data compiled by the Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins University. The actual numbers are believed to be much higher due to testing shortages, many unreported cases and suspicions that some national governments are hiding or downplaying the scope of their outbreaks. Since the first cases were detected in China in December, the United States has become the worst-affected country, with more than 4.7 million diagnosed cases and at least 156,426 deaths. Here’s how the news developed Tuesday. All times Eastern:11:17 p.m. New data suggests surge could be leveling off, says FEMANew data on the coronavirus suggests that the national surge in cases could be leveling off, according to an internal FEMA memo obtained by ABC News.Only seven states and territories are on an upward trajectory of new cases, while 10 states are at a plateau and 39 states are going down, according to the memo.Nationwide, the last week saw a 9.2% decrease in cases from the previous seven-day period, the memo said.There was also a 7% increase in new deaths compared to the previous week, but the figure is lower than the 20-30% week-over-week increase the country has seen of late.6:05 p.m.: Louisiana to extend bar closures, mask mandateLouisiana bars will remain closed for on-site consumption, and a statewide mask mandate will remain in effect through Aug. 28, Gov. John Bel Edwards announced Tuesday.Crowd sizes will also still be limited to no more than 50 people.This is the second time the governor has extended the measures, which went into effect on July 13 and were set to end on Friday. Edwards plans to sign a new executive order this week extending the order another 21 days due to “high COVID incidence.”“Louisiana is beginning to see the positive impact of the mask mandate in its COVID-19 data, including a decline in the number of people who are reporting to emergency rooms with COVID-like symptoms, decreasing new cases across the state and declining or plateauing hospitalizations in many regions of our state,” Edwards said in a statement. “Still, every single one of our 64 parishes has high COVID incidence.”Louisiana leads the U.S. in cases per capita, according to state data. There are 124,461 confirmed cases.4:23 p.m.: Mississippi governor issues mask mandate, pushes school back for some studentsMississippi Gov. Tate Reeves on Tuesday said everyone in the state must wear a mask at public gatherings and when shopping, the Mississippi Clarion Ledger reported. The executive order will last for two weeks, the newspaper said.Workers from Servpro disinfect Mugshots restaurant in Tupelo, Miss., July 17, 2020, as the restaurant is preparing to open for business.The governor on Tuesday also said he’s issuing an executive order to delay in-person learning in eight hot spot counties for students in 7th grade and above, reported NBC Jackson affiliate WLBT.Fifty-one districts are set to begin school this week, WLBT said. Masks will be required for students and teachers, according to WLBT.3:15 p.m.: Rafael Nadal says he won’t play US Open Rafael Nadal has announced that he will not seek to defend his title at the U.S. Open this month because of concerns surrounding COVID-19.He wrote on Instagram, “The situation is very complicated worldwide, the COVID-19 cases are increasing, it looks like we still don’t have control of it.”  The U.S. Tennis Association announced Tuesday that Novak Djokovic and Roger Federer will be among the players who will compete for the grand slam title.Djokovic was a vocal critic of the US Open bubble calling the conditions “extreme.” But in recent weeks, a European tournament he hosted came under fire after some players contracted COVID-19 and videos surfaced of parties showing a lack of social distancing. The U.S. Open begins Aug. 31 in Flushing, New York.1:30 p.m.: Indianapolis 500 to take place without fansThis year’s Indianapolis 500 will take place on Aug. 23 without fans, Indianapolis Motor Speedway said Tuesday.“As dedicated as we were to running the race this year with 25 percent attendance at our large outdoor facility, even with meaningful and careful precautions implemented by the city and state, the COVID-19 trends in Marion County and Indiana have worsened,” Indianapolis Motor Speedway said in a statement. “Since our June 26 announcement, the number of cases in Marion County has tripled while the positivity rate has doubled.”“We said from the beginning of the pandemic we would put the health and safety of our community first, and while hosting spectators at a limited capacity with our robust plan in place was appropriate in late June, it is not the right path forward based on the current environment,” the statement said.1:03 p.m.: Birx says US is making progress but deaths likely to rise for next 2 weeksOn a weekly call with governors and Vice President Mike Pence, White House coronavirus response coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx said “test-positivity is going down” but the U.S. will still likely see a rise in deaths over the next two weeks.Birx urged governors who are battling outbreaks “to not let your citizens get discouraged that they’re not seeing progress,” according to an audio recording of the Monday meeting obtained by ABC News.“Because you are seeing progress,” Birx continued, “it’s just the whole [cycle] takes about six to eight weeks to move through that increased test positivity, increased cases, and then increasing mortality.”Birx called out the success of Arizona’s actions on masks and bars that helped pull the state back from the brink.Birx and Pence both said that states in the heartland — particularly Missouri and Tennessee — still have time to avoid a crisis.12:15 p.m.: Connecticut, New York, New Jersey add Rhode Island to travel quarantine listConnecticut, New York and New Jersey have added Rhode Island to their travel quarantine list, Connecticut Gov. Ned Lamont announced Tuesday.Delaware and Washington, D.C., have been removed from the list, Lamont said.New York, New Jersey and Connecticut have a travel advisory in place for states with a positive test rate higher than 10 per 100,000 residents over a week average, or any state with 10% of higher positivity rate over a week average. Travelers arriving in the Tri-state area from those states must quarantine for two weeks.Over two dozen states are on the list.11:37 a.m.: NYC health commissioner resigns following clashes with mayorNew York City’s health commissioner, Dr. Oxiris Barbot, submitted her resignation Tuesday morning to Mayor Bill de Blasio, who immediately named a replacement as the city continues its battle against the novel coronavirus.In her resignation letter, Barbot criticized the de Blasio administration’s handling of the city’s outbreak.“I leave my post today with deep disappointment that during the most critical public health crisis in our lifetime, that the Health Department’s incomparable disease control expertise was not used to the degree it could have been,” wrote Barbot, who served as commissioner since 2018. “Our experts are world renowned for their epidemiology, surveillance and response work. The city would be well served by having them at the strategic center of the response not in the background.”The city’s new health commissioner is Dr. Dave Chokshi, a Rhodes Scholar who served at the Louisiana Department of Health during Hurricane Katrina. He was also a principal health adviser to the secretary of Veterans Affairs in the Obama administration and was a practicing physician at Bellevue Hospital in Manhattan.10:54 a.m.: 45 Florida hospitals have reached ICU capacity, data showsThe intensive care units of at least 45 Florida hospitals have reached capacity and don’t have any free beds, according to data released Tuesday by Florida’s Agency for Health Care Administration.The data also shows 39 Florida hospitals with just one ICU bed available. Two Florida counties, Jackson and Nassau, have zero ICU beds available in their hospitals.Meanwhile, the percentage of adult ICU beds available statewide was 16.5%, according to the data.The Sunshine State has emerged as a major new hot spot in the novel coronavirus outbreak in the United States, with confirmed cases recently eclipsing New York and now second only to California.The Florida Department of Health recorded 5,446 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, bringing the statewide count to 497,330. There were also an additional 245 coronavirus-related deaths, making the total 7,524.The number of coronavirus-related hospitalizations in the state was up 586 from the previous day.7:42 a.m.: ‘We have to take this seriously,’ FDA commissioner saysThe head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said Tuesday that the novel coronavirus outbreak is still not under control, as he urged Americans to “take this seriously.” “This virus is still with us, and it is around the country and we’re seeing these cases come not just in the United States but around the world,” FDA Commissioner Stephen Hahn told ABC News chief anchor George Stephanopoulos in an interview on Good Morning America.“That’s really the message we want the American people to know, that we have to take this seriously,” he added. “We need to get these case numbers down.” Hahn called on Americans to continue practicing the “common sense public health measures” to prevent the further spread of the virus, including frequent hand washing and social distancing. “These measures appear to be working in the areas that are hotspots,” he said.When asked whether political considerations will be at play when the FDA takes on the role of determining whether a vaccine is both safe and effective, Hahn said they “will make that decision based upon the science and the data from the clinical trials that are going.” “The science and data are really going to guide this decision and nothing else,” he added. The FDA has the ability to authorize emergency use of a vaccine before the normal approval process is completed. Hahn said the agency will “expeditiously” review the data from the clinical trials as soon as its available, “whether we use the emergency use authorization path or the regular approval path.” “Both are available to us, but our rigorous standards that we will use the safety and efficacy will be done,” he said. The FDA will also tap a vaccine advisory committee, which Hahn said is “a standard approach.” “We will be using that to help us make this decision,” he noted. “These are outside experts from around the country.”6:12 a.m. UN chief warns of ‘generational catastrophe’ amid school closuresSchool closures due to the coronavirus pandemic in over 160 countries in mid-July affected more than one billion students, United Nations Secretary-General Antonio Guterres said Tuesday.Meanwhile, at least 40 million children have missed out on education “in their critical pre-school year,” according to Guterres, who warned that the world faces “a generational catastrophe that could waste untold human potential, undermine decades of progress, and exacerbate entrenched inequalities.”The U.N. chief urged schools to reopen once the local transmission of the novel coronavirus is under control.“We are at a defining moment for the world’s children and young people,” Guterres said in a video message Tuesday. “The decisions that governments and partners take now will have lasting impact on hundreds of millions of young people, and on the development prospects of countries for decades to come.”5:05 a.m.: Russia reports lowest daily increase in cases since AprilRussia reported 5,159 new cases of COVID-19 on Monday, its lowest day-to-day increase since April 23.The country’s coronavirus response headquarters also recorded 144 additional coronavirus-related deaths over the past 24 hours. Meanwhile, another 7,878 patients had recovered from the disease.Overall, Russia has reported 861,423 confirmed cases of COVID-19 and 14,351 deaths since the start of the pandemic.The country has the fourth-highest number of diagnosed cases in the world, according to a count kept by Johns Hopkins University. 3:24 a.m.: US records under 50,000 new cases for second straight dayMore than 45,000 new cases of COVID-19 were identified in the United States on Monday, according to a count kept by Johns Hopkins University.It’s the second straight day that the daily caseload is under 50,000 — a low that the country hasn’t seen for weeks. The latest day-to-day increase is also down from the country’s peak of 77,000 new cases, identified on July 16.A total of 4,717,568 people in the United States have been diagnosed with COVID-19 since the pandemic began, and at least 155,469 of them have died, according to Johns Hopkins. The cases include people from all 50 U.S. states, Washington, D.C., and other U.S. territories as well as repatriated citizens.By May 20, all U.S. states had begun lifting stay-at-home orders and other restrictions put in place to curb the spread of the novel coronavirus. The day-to-day increase in the country’s cases then hovered around 20,000 for a couple of weeks before shooting back up and crossing 70,000 for the first time in mid-July.Many states have seen a rise in infections in recent weeks, with some — including Arizona, California and Florida — reporting daily records.However, an internal memo from the Federal Emergency Management Agency shows an 8.8% decrease in new cases across the United States over the last week compared with the previous week.That same seven-day span saw a 24% increase in deaths, according to the memo obtained by ABC News. Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Details emerge after woman found alive in body bag at funeral home

first_imgkali9/iStockBy BILL HUTCHINSON, ABC News(DETROIT) — A 20-year-old Michigan woman who was declared dead by paramedics and placed in a body bag for nearly three hours was discovered alive when a funeral home employee unzipped the bag and found her staring up at him, a lawyer for the woman’s family said.Timesha Beauchamp, who’s suffered from cerebral palsy since birth, was in critical condition and on a respirator Tuesday afternoon at Sinai-Grace Hospital in Detroit, her family’s lawyer, Geoffrey Fieger, said during a Zoom news conference.“When the body bag was opened and they were getting ready to embalm the body, Timesha’s eyes were open and she was breathing,” Fieger said.Fieger said that shortly after Beauchamp was declared dead, her godmother, Savannah Spears, a registered nurse, told paramedics and police officers that she saw Beauchamp move and thought she detected a faint pulse.“They told her the movements were involuntary, that they were related to the drugs that they had administered to Timesha and it did not change their opinion as to the fact that they felt she was dead,” said Fieger, who once represented controversial Michigan pathologist Dr. Jack Kevorkian against murder charges stemming for physician-assisted suicides.The incident unfolded on Sunday morning at Beauchamp’s home in Southfield, a suburb of Detroit, when her family called 911 after noticing her lips were pale, that there was secretion around her mouth and she was having trouble breathing, Fieger said.Southfield Fire Department paramedics arrived at the home around 7:34 a.m. on a call for an unresponsive female, Fire Chief Johnny L. Menifee said in a statement released on Monday. Menifee said the woman was not breathing when paramedics arrived.“The paramedics performed CPR and other life-reviving methods for 30 minutes,” Menifee said. “Given medical readings and the condition of the patient, it was determined at that time that she did not have signs of life.”A local emergency department physician pronounced Beauchamp dead based upon information provided by the paramedics, Menifee said.Since there was no foul play involved, the Southfield Police Department notified the Oakland County Medical Examiner’s Office of the findings and an on-duty forensic pathologist at the coroner’s office released the body to the woman’s family to make arrangements to have the body picked up by a funeral home of their choosing, Menifee said.The city of Southfield is conducting an internal investigation along with the Oakland County Medical Control Authority, and the findings of the probe will be turned over to the Michigan Bureau of EMS, Trauma and Preparedness, Menifee said.Fieger said the four paramedics who worked on Beauchamp placed her in a body bag and left the home around 9 a.m.Beauchamp’s relatives contacted the John H. Cole Funeral Home in Detroit. Workers from the mortuary came to the home around 11:25 a.m., picked up what they initially thought was a dead person and took it to the nearby funeral home.Fieger said the family received a frantic call from the funeral home director around 11:45 a.m.“The embalmer was actually there and was the person who opened the body bag,” Fieger said.Staff at the funeral home also contacted the Detroit Fire Department, Dave Fornell, deputy commissioner of the Detroit Fire Department, told ABC News. He said the call the fire department received from the funeral home was for a person having difficulty breathing and that an emergency medical services crew didn’t know the full story until they arrived.“We couldn’t believe it,” Fornell said.Fieger said he was retained by the family to investigate alleged negligence on the part of the paramedics and police for a possible lawsuit. He said Beauchamp might not be in the condition she’s in now had she immediately been rushed to a hospital instead of being left in a body bag for nearly three hours.“Our main concern, along with the family, is her survival and her well-being,” Fieger said. “The doctors are unable to give a prognosis right now and have indicated that it’s touch and go.”Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Child killed, parents badly burned in Washington wildfire

first_imgToa55/iStockBy MEREDITH DELISO, ABC News(NEW YORK) — A 1-year-old was killed and his parents suffered third-degree burns after attempting to escape a wildfire in Washington state, authorities said.Jacob Hyland, 31, and Jamie Hyland, 26, of Renton, Washington, were discovered with their child on the bank of the Columbia River in Okanogan County Wednesday morning after they had abandoned the car they were traveling in, officials said. All three had suffered from severe burns.Their child had died by the time search crews found them, officials said.“It’s absolutely devastating and heartbreaking,” Okanogan County Sheriff Tony Hawley told ABC News.According to Hawley, the family was attempting to leave their property to escape the Cold Springs Fire, one of several wildfires to erupt in Washington over Labor Day weekend. The sheriff’s office was contacted Tuesday afternoon about locating the missing family, whose car was found burnt but not occupied. The couple’s families had last spoken to them on Sunday, Hawley said.The three victims were transported by boat to Bridgeport State Park, from which an ambulance transported them to Three Rivers Hospital in Brewster, Washington, Hawley said. Jacob Hyland and Jamie Hyland were separately flown to Harborview Medical Center in Seattle Wednesday afternoon to treat their third-degree burns, officials said.Both are in critical condition and are being cared for by trauma and burn specialists, Harborview Medical Center told ABC News in a statement.Detectives are investigating the child’s death, and investigators are working to determine the cause of the fire, which started Monday and has burned more than 164,000 acres, authorities said.The weekend’s wildfires leveled an entire town in eastern Washington, Seattle ABC affiliate KOMO-TV reported. This is the first reported death from the fires, according to Hilary Franz, commissioner of Public Lands for the Washington state Department of Natural Resources.“My heart breaks for the family of the child who perished in the Cold Springs fire,” Franz said in a statement posted to Twitter Wednesday evening. “I am devastated.”Franz added that she “needs every single resident of Washington to care” about protecting lives from wildfires.“Not just today, but tomorrow, and every day until we have the resources to protect our communities and protect our firefighters,” she continued.The child was one of at least seven people who have died in the West as nearly 200 wildfires burn across nine states.Two people were found dead in a vehicle in Marion County, Oregon, Wednesday, after fire swept through the area on Monday. Also in Oregon, a third victim was found near the origin of the Almeda Fire that began near homes in Medford on Tuesday, officials said. Three others were found dead in Butte County, California, on Wednesday evening, including two people at the same location, as a result of the Bear Fire, Butte County Sheriff Kory Honea said.Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

Hurricane Delta charges toward Louisiana coast, will make landfall Friday: Latest path

first_imgABC NewsBy MAX GOLEMBO and EMILY SHAPIRO, ABC News(NEW YORK) — Hurricane Delta, a dangerous Category 3 hurricane, is charging toward the Louisiana coast and is forecast to make landfall near the same area hit hard by Hurricane Laura in August.Louisiana Gov. John Bel Edwards tweeted overnight, “To the people of Southwest Louisiana, I know you are strong. I also know you’re about to be tested again. Please finish making preparations now. We will get through this.”Louisiana is getting hit by heavy rain already as tropical storm conditions begin on the Texas coast.Delta is expected to weaken slightly before making landfall near Cameron, Louisiana, between 5 p.m. and 7 p.m. Friday as Category 2 hurricane.Storm surge — which is especially dangerous — is forecast to be near 11 feet in parts of Louisiana.Winds gusts could reach 100 mph in Lake Charles and southern Louisiana.Rainfall totals could reach 6 to 12 inches Friday, with local areas getting up to 15 inches in southern Louisiana. Flash flooding is expected.Delta is the fourth named storm to make landfall in Louisiana this year.When Hurricane Delta makes landfall, it will break the record for most storms to make landfall in one season in the continental U.S.The other nine named storms that made landfall this season were: Tropical Storm Bertha (South Carolina); Tropical Storm Cristobal (Louisiana); Tropical Storm Fay (New Jersey); Hurricane Hanna (Texas); Hurricane Isaias (North Carolina); Hurricane Laura (Louisiana); Tropical Storm Marco (Louisiana), Hurricane Sally (Alabama); and Tropical Storm Beta (Texas).Copyright © 2020, ABC Audio. All rights reserved.last_img read more

HR’s role to stay calm in the face of tribunal

first_img Previous Article Next Article HR’s role to stay calm in the face of tribunalOn 25 Jan 2000 in Personnel Today Another week, another batch of headline-grabbing compensation awards as thelitigious society takes hold. Facing a tribunal case can cost an arm and a legthese days, it seems.On the subject of arms and legs, their value is set to rise also. Themaximum recompense for loss of or injury to a limb is almost certain to doublewhen the Appeal Court meets in three weeks’ time to review a series of cases.The expected increase in pay-outs will also encompass psychological damage instress at work cases.The temptation for many employers in response to these developments is tothrow their hands in the air, complain about wimpish employees scurrying totheir “no win, no fee” lawyers and bemoan the lack of backbone insociety.This is to misread the situation. It can actually be difficult to win largesums at a tribunal; it takes a long time and one needs a strong case. It isalso true that awards have been difficult to obtain for some very worthy cases,such as the retired coal miners quietly dying of emphysema while they awaitcompensation from the Government.In the case of workplace stress one needs to demonstrate a diagnosedpsychiatric condition; cases have been thrown out where this is not shown. Theaward in such cases is only partly compensation – it also includes lostearnings.This does not mean that there is no cause for concern over the rising levelsof awards. There is a real danger that the “have a go” society couldarrive through the force of its own momentum, as there is some anecdotalevidence that a few employers, scared by the newspaper headlines, are rollingover as soon as they receive a claim for stress.It is here that the HR professional has a crucial role. Just as many linemanagers panic with a misbehaving employee, wrongly believing that it isimpossible to sack someone, so they can assume they are in the wrong over acompensation claim when they are not.By staying calm and addressing the facts of the case and of the law, the HRprofessional can maintain sanity in a rapidly changing environment. Comments are closed. Related posts:No related photos.last_img read more