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Tuesday, July 25, 2017
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BREAKING: Tree Falls on California Wedding Party, One Dead, Five Injured

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One person is dead and five others have been injured near Los Angeles, California, after a tree reportedly fell on a wedding party.

The incident was first reported around 4 p.m. Saturday, when the public information officer of LA County Fire announced, “Large tree fell on wedding party. Many patients injured. Fire dept onscene assessing the situation and treating people.”

Local emergency officials have scheduled a press briefing later this evening to provide an update regarding the situation.

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“Low-level Unrest Continues” at Alaska Island Volcano

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Steam and volcanic gas rising from the summit crater of Pavlof Volcano in 2004

The United States Geological Survey is continuing to monitor seismic activity at Pavlof Volcano in the Kudobin Islands.

Friday afternoon, USGS officials released a statement, saying “Low-level unrest continues at Pavlof Volcano. Seismic activity remains slightly above background. Other than a single image showing weakly elevated surface temperatures at the summit on December 12, no other significant activity was observed in partly cloudy to cloudy satellite images during the week. Web camera views showed occasional minor steaming at the summit.”

According to the USGS, vapor emissions, with or without minor amounts of volcanic ash, are common and may occur from the summit vent at any time. Periods of more vigorous ash emission and lava fountaining also are possible and could occur with only subtle changes in the level of seismic activity. Pavlof is one of the most frequently active volcanoes in Alaska, and pauses in eruptive activity followed by renewed unrest and ash emission are common.

Pavlof Volcano is a snow- and ice-covered stratovolcano located on the southwestern end of the Alaska Peninsula about 953 km (592 mi) southwest of Anchorage. The volcano is about 7 km (4.4 mi) in diameter and has active vents on the north and east sides close to the summit. With over 40 historic eruptions, it is one of the most consistently active volcanoes in the Aleutian arc. Eruptive activity is generally characterized by sporadic Strombolian lava fountaining continuing for a several-month period. Ash plumes as high as 49,000 ft ASL have been generated by past eruptions of Pavlof, and during the March 2016 eruption, ash plumes as high as 40,000 feet above sea level were generated and the ash was tracked in satellite data as distant as eastern Canada. The nearest community, Cold Bay, is located 60 km (37 miles) to the southwest of Pavlof.

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Volcanic Eruption Continues on Hawaii’s Big Island

Volcanic Activity at Big Island -- Courtesy USGS
Volcanic Activity at Big Island — Courtesy USGS

The United States Geological Survey continues to monitor ongoing volcanic activity at Kīlauea Volcano on Big Island in the State of Hawaii.

According to the USGS, the volcano continues to erupt in two locations and lava flow from Puʻu ʻŌʻō in the East Rift Zone is now entering the ocean at Kamokuna. A younger branch of the flow is active near Puʻu ʻŌʻō and advancing slowly east.

These lava flows pose no threat to nearby communities at this time, however, the USGS has issued “a strong caution to visitors viewing” the flow ocean entry (where lava meets the sea): “There are additional significant hazards besides walking on uneven surfaces and around unstable, extremely steep sea cliffs. Venturing too close to an ocean entry exposes you to flying debris created by the explosive interaction between lava and water. Also, the new land created is unstable because it is built on unconsolidated lava fragments and sand. This loose material can easily be eroded away by surf, causing the new land to become unsupported and slide into the sea. In several instances, such collapses, once started, have also incorporated parts of the older sea cliff. Prominent cracks observed in the surface of the relatively large eastern lava delta at Kamokuna indicate instability and an increased potential for larger collapse events. Finally, the interaction of lava with the ocean creates a corrosive seawater plume laden with hydrochloric acid and fine volcanic particles that can irritate the skin, eyes, and lungs.”

The lava lake at Kīlauea’s summit continues to circulate, with periods of spattering occurring sporadically. Inflationary tilt at the Summit continues along with a rise in lava lake level. Seismic activity continues at a low rate overall, with a magnitude 3.8 felt earthquake occurring last night on the Kīlauea Volcano south flank.

A younger branch of the flow is active near Puʻu ʻŌʻō and advancing slowly east, however, officials say, these lava flows pose no threat to nearby communities at this time.

“The lava lake at Kīlauea’s summit continues to circulate, with periods of spattering occurring sporadically. Inflationary tilt at the Summit continues along with a rise in lava lake level. Seismic activity continues at a low rate overall, with a magnitude 3.8 felt earthquake occurring last night on the Kīlauea Volcano south flank,” stated a USGS update issued at 9:18 a.m. HST Saturday.

Last week, the average daily sulfur dioxide emission rate at the summit was approximately 5,000 metric tons/day, but has not been measurable over the past week. Summit seismic activity remains low overall. The summit continued to inflate over the past day.

There were no obvious changes at Puʻu ʻŌʻō. Webcam views show persistent glow from sources within the crater and from a vent high on the northeast flank of the cone. The tiltmeter on the northwest flank of the cone showed a slight increase in tilt over the past day. The sulfur dioxide emission rate from all East Rift Zone vents was about 340 metric tons/day when last measured on November 30. Seismicity in the Puʻu ʻŌʻō area continues at low levels.

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Winter Weather Affects Travel in Seattle and Portland

Photo Courtesy: Alaska Airlines
Photo Courtesy: Alaska Airlines

Information obtained from Alaska Airlines:

Noon Update: Alaska Airlines and Horizon Air are making progress today getting flight operations back on track in Seattle and Portland. Wintry weather conditions triggered cancellations yesterday into this morning.

Here’s the latest as of noon:

Sea-Tac

  • Alaska canceled 8 flights in and out of Seattle today.
  • Horizon canceled 6 flights in and out of Seattle today.
  • Those cancellations combined affected 1,656 passengers in Seattle.
  • Light rain is forecasted for the rest of the day.
  • Snow started falling at 7:30 p.m. last night at Sea-Tac.
  • Employees worked quickly to get scheduled departing flights out and aircraft overnighting in Seattle parked safely.

Portland

  • Alaska canceled 9 flights in and out of Portland today.
  • Horizon canceled 20 flights in and out of Portland today.
  • Those cancellations combined affected 2,587 passengers affected in Portland.
  • Freezing rain remains a serious concern at the airport. Icy conditions created a tremendous safety issue.
  • Deicing operations are underway on both Alaska and Horizon aircraft.
  • Passengers in Portland should arrive at the airport early and be prepared for long lines as Alaska and Horizon work to re-accommodate customers.

Even with improving weather, it will take some time to get aircraft repositioned back in Seattle and Portland. Planes were kept at other airports until the winter weather system moved through the Northwest.

On Thursday, Alaska and Horizon together canceled 127 flights into and out of Seattle and Portland affecting nearly 11,000 customers.

10 a.m. Update  As of 10 a.m. Alaska Air Group has canceled 13 flights out of Seattle due to winter weather, affecting more than 1,500 passengers.

The airline has also canceled 24 flights scheduled to depart Portland, affecting more than 2,300 customers.

Freezing rain is still falling in Portland this morning.

If you’re traveling from Portland International Airport, plan to arrive at the airport early and be prepared for long lines as Alaska and Horizon work to re-accommodate customers.

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CHILD ABDUCTION EMERGENCY: Georgia & South Carolina

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The South Carolina Emergency Management Agency has issued an emergency bulletin indicating a “child abduction emergency.”

According to the agency’s special alert, Calah Noel Washkow, age 15, white, female, is believed to be in extreme danger.  She weighs 98 pounds and is 5 ft. 4 inches tall, has blue eyes and blonde shoulder length hair.

“The suspect is Jason Arlis Johnson, a white male, aged 37.  He weighs 175 pounds and is 5 ft. 8 inches tall, has blue eyes and blonde / brown hair.  Law enforcement officials say he may have shaved his head.

The suspect’s car is a 1998 tan Ford, Crown Victoria, with a South Carolina license plate of KVJ240.

If you have any information regarding this abduction, please contact local law enforcement immediately.

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Soldier in Ohio charged with selling military night vision equipment

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NEW YORK — A U.S. Air Force service member has been arrested on federal charges for his alleged role in selling thousands of dollars in military equipment.

The arrest resulted from a joint investigation by U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s (ICE) Homeland Security Investigation (HSI) and the Department of Defense’s, Defense Criminal Investigative Service (DCIS).

Zachary Sizemore, 24, an active-duty service member of the U.S. Air Force, was arrested on the Wright-Patterson Air Force Base in Dayton, Ohio, where he is stationed. Sizemore is charged with theft and sale without authority of night-vision devices and components stolen from the Air Force.

“As an active duty member of the United States Air Force, Sizemore allegedly broke the sacred military oath of protecting this nation when he stole and sold high-tech military technology on the internet,” said Angel M. Melendez, special agent in charge of HSI New York. “This night vision equipment is highly advanced, giving our military a much deserved edge on today’s battlefield. HSI is committed to making sure this technology does not fall into the wrong hands.”

“Our military’s night vision technology is among the most advanced in the world. As alleged, the defendant made stolen, military-issued, night vision devices available on the internet to anyone with the means to purchase them. Such technology gives our soldiers a critical advantage on the battlefield. Stealing that technology and selling it to the highest bidder puts our soldiers at risk,” said Robert L. Capers, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of New York. “We will continue to use all of the law enforcement tools at our disposal to help protect our soldiers abroad.”

Night vision devices acquired by the United States military, such as the items allegedly stolen and sold by the defendant, contain components made to military specifications. They are required by the military to be rendered useless for their intended purpose prior to leaving government control. United States military policies prohibit the private sale of fully functional military-issued night vision equipment.

According to the complaint, between July 2013 and November 2016, Sizemore sold or attempted to sell at least three night vision devices that were stolen from the United States military, including an AN/PVS-7D night vision goggle and two mini-thermal monocular devices. In addition, he created online postings for, and sold or attempted to sell, approximately 45 items described as night vision equipment or thermal equipment. Of those postings, Sizemore sold at least 38 such items for approximately $50,000.

This case is being prosecuted by EDNY with assistance provided by the department’s Counterintelligence and Export Control section. The charges in the complaint are merely allegations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty. If convicted, the defendant faces up to 10 years in prison, forfeiture, and a fine of up to $250,000.

The Federal government has not provided any information as to whom the alleged buyers were.

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Massive House Fire Threatens Propane Business in Quincy, Ill.

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QUINCY, Illionis — Local emergency responders have issued an emergency alert to residents in Quincy, informing them that a large house fire burning at 210 Kentucky St., near the Oakley-Lindsey Center.

Emergency crews are fearful that the structure fire threatens the ILMO Products Company, located just next door to the fire.  The ILMO site contains liquid oxygen, welding supplies and safety equipment.

Information is scarce at this time.  Updates will be provided as they become available.

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BREAKING: Astronaut John Glenn Dies at 95

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Ohio native John Glenn Jr. died today at the Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center in Columbus, Ohio.

Yesterday, a spokesman for The Ohio State University announced that Glenn was hospitalized at OSU, having been admitted “more than a week” before. The spokesman indicated he did not know Glenn’s condition or diagnosis, and cautioned that his hospitalization at The James Cancer Hospital did not necessarily mean that Glenn had cancer.

A family source said that Glenn had been in declining health and that Annie Glenn and his children and grandchildren had joined him at the hospital.

Glenn (July 18, 1921 – December 8, 2016), (Col, USMC, Ret.), was an American aviator, engineer, astronaut, and United States Senator from Ohio. He was one of the “Mercury Seven” group of military test pilots selected in 1959 by NASA to become America’s first astronauts and fly the Project Mercury spacecraft.

On February 20, 1962, Glenn flew the Friendship 7 mission and became the first American to orbit the Earth and the fifth person in space, after cosmonauts Yuri Gagarin and Gherman Titov and the sub-orbital flights of Mercury astronauts Alan Shepard and Gus Grissom. Glenn is the earliest-born American to go to orbit, and the second earliest-born man overall after Soviet cosmonaut Georgy Beregovoy. Glenn received the Congressional Space Medal of Honor in 1978, and was inducted into the U.S. Astronaut Hall of Fame in 1990. With the death of Scott Carpenter on October 10, 2013, Glenn became the last surviving member of the Mercury Seven.

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NWS: “Unusually Strong Winter Storm” in Washington & Oregon

Photo Courtesy: P199
Photo Courtesy: P199

The National Weather Service in Portland, Oregon, has issued an urgent winter weather message to the residents of Oregon and Washington.

According to meteorologists, significant winter weather is expected over much of southwest Washington and northwest Oregon Thursday and Thursday night.

At 2 p.m. PST, the weather service issued a statement saying, “an unusually strong winter storm will bring mixed precipitation across much of southwest Washington and northwest Oregon that will have significant impacts spreading north over the area Thursday, continuing in the northern areas into Thursday night and into the Columbia River Gorge into Friday.  This is the strongest storm of this type in quite a while.”

The storm is expected to begin just before sunrise Thursday morning and will continue into mid-afternoon Thursday.  Precipitation should mainly be freezing rain by around 10 a.m.* Snow accumulations * SNOW ACCUMULATIONS…1 TO 2 OR 3 INCHES OF SNOW IS POSSIBLE

1 to 3 inches of snow is possible Thursday morning in the foothills and coast range — light accumulations of a trace to less than an inch in the South Williamette Valley.

“Travel will be difficult as some brief snow accumulations change to sleet and then freezing rain and roads become snow and ice covered and slick.  Some power disruptions are possible,” stated a National Weather Service report.

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Anchorage Shooting, 3 Gunshot Wound Victims Identified

Photo courtesy: Scott Davidson
Photo courtesy: Scott Davidson

ANCHORAGE, Alaska — Anchorage police are investigating a shooting that occurred just before 7:30 p.m. outside on W 30th Avenue between Arctic and Spenard.

It was reported to police that prior to the shooting there was a loud disturbance between two groups of people. The altercation escalated into a shooting where multiple shots were fired.

When police arrived at the scene a male was located on the ground with gunshot wounds and was transported to a local hospital where he is undergoing emergency surgery. He was listed in critical condition.

Meanwhile, two other victims with gunshot wounds showed up to the hospital and it was confirmed that they had been at the scene on W 30th Ave. Police have multiple witnesses in custody and are further investigating the incident.

No charges have been filed at this time as this investigation is in its early stages. Additional information will be released as facts are confirmed in the case. Anyone that may have any additional information on the event and has not yet spoken with police is asked to contact APD at 786-8900 and press “0” to speak with dispatch.

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