Tues, February 7, 2012
NINE-STATE EARTHQUAKE DRILL TODAY
More than a million people in nine states, including Tennessee, are expected to take part in a coordinated earthquake drill this morning at 10:15 Central time. It's called the Great Central U.S. ShakeOut and the drill focuses on the three key steps to riding out an earthquake: Drop, cover and hold on.
2011 RECORD YEAR FOR TORNADOES
Tennessee broke records last year for almost twice as many tornadoes as our previous highest year. We had 113 tornadoes last year, and 34 deaths. With warm, wet, La Nina conditions, this year could be close to the same.
HOW HIGH WILL GAS PRICES GO?
Gas prices could go as high as 6 dollars a gallon.... if the situation between Israel and Iran continues into a crisis. And even if it doesn't.... you're expected to be paying up to four dollars or more before the winter is over. And that's not EVEN considering any weather problems in the gulf that might spike them even more.
WASHINGTON STATE MURDER-SUICIDE LATEST
More information's coming out about the Washington State father who ignited an explosion in his home this weekend, killing himself and his two young boys. Josh Powell was a person of interest in the disappearance of his wife Susan two years ago. His boys had been 2 and 4 when their dad claims he took them on a camping trip in the middle of the night, then found his wife missing. But now investigators say the children were becoming more verbal, and had told their grandparents that their mommy was in the trunk, and that mom and dad got out of the car and mom disappeared. This Sunday, when a child social worker brought the boys to visit with their dad, they walked ahead of her into the house, Josh slammed and locked the door, and blew up the place. The medical examiner now says Powell also chopped the boys' necks with a hatchet or ax before the house exploded.
DOCTORS SEE INCREASE IN RESPIRATORY INFECTIONS
If it seems like you're seeing more people with respiratory infection, you're right. Doctors in Tennessee say they're seeing more respiratory infections with runny noses and fevers, as well as coughs that linger two or three weeks, instead of going away in a week or so. Dr. Gigante from Vanderbilt says your best bet is still to stay hydrated and get extra rest. The good news: so far not many flu cases this year.
OPRY MILLS AND NASHVILLE ZOO TO HOST JOB FAIR
There are a couple of job fairs coming up the first of next week. There's an Opry Mills fob fair next Tuesday from 10 to 4, and there's a job fair at the Nashville Zoo next Monday and Tuesday, 10 to 3.
MORE PRESIDENTIAL PRIMARIES TODAY
Republican frontrunner Mitt Romney hopes to stretch his lead with wins in the Presidential Primaries in Colorado and Minnesota today. The former Massachusetts governor is coming off victories in presidential contests in Florida and Nevada.
RANDY TRAVIS ARRESTED
Country singer Randy Travis has been arrested for public intoxication. He was found in a car, in front of a church early yesterday morning, with an open bottle of wine, and smelling of alcohol. The 52 year-old apologized and said he'd been partying after the Super Bowl.
HEALTH: MALE SMOKERS HAVE FASTER BRAIN FUNCTION DECLINE
Men who smoke apparently pay a higher price than women in BRAIN function decline. British scientists say men start showing early dementia-like symptoms as early as 45, women don't... possibly because they smoke less than men. (The study is published in the journal "Archives of General Psychiatry.")
NEW SECRET TO RESISTING JUNK FOOD: JUST PUT IT OFF
You know how you sometimes tell yourself you'll start your diet tomorrow? Well a new study finds it'll work the same if you tell yourself you'll have that 'junk food' 'later'…. Instead of eating it now. And if you can, set a limit in your mind, like, 'I'll have a bite of that cake later on." Or "I'll have a couple spoons of that ice cream later." The strategy of putting it off, and setting a specific amount, makes it less likely you'll binge, even if you do really eat it later.
GOOGLE CELEBRATES BIRTHDAY OF AUTHOR
If you use the Google search engine today, you'll notice a Victorian look. It's in honor of what would have been Charles Dickens' 200th birthday. Dickens wrote classics including "A Christmas Carol", "A Tale of Two Cities," "David Copperfield," and "Bleak House."
COMPLETE LOS ANGELES ELEMENTARY SCHOOL STAFF FIRED
A Los Angles elementary school is being shut down for two days, and the entire staff is being fired. The L.A. schools Superintendent says they're cleaning house at the school, after two teachers were arrested on charges of lewd conduct. They want to rebuild confidence among families who've lost faith in the school. About 100 parents and supporters protested outside the school Monday, some demanding that cameras be placed in classrooms and hallways for the safety of their children.
TENNESSEE SUPERMARKET WINE BILL STALLED
You still may be able to pick up a bottle of wine with your groceries. The effort to sell wine in Tennessee grocery stores might still happen. The proposal to let voters decide was abandoned recently without a sponsor in the state Senate, but supporters say there are still plenty of bills from last year they will try to resurrect to get the issue to a vote. (Some Tennessee grocers say the liquor industry is spreading rumors to try to keep the bill stalled.)
STUDY: NYPD CANCER RATE TRIPLED AFTER 9-11
The cancer rate in the New York Police Department has tripled since the the September 11th terrorist attacks.... according to new data from the Patrolmen's Benevolent Association. They say since 9-11, nearly 300 cops have been diagnosed with cancer, while 56 officers have died. (The average age of officers getting the disease is 44.)
ZOO ACHIEVES RECORD ATTENDANCE
Unseasonably warm weather has definitely helped the Nashville Zoo. Zoo representatives say they set record attendance last month, with more than 14-thousand visitors.
CLINT EASTWOOD SAYS SUPER BOWL AD WAS NOT POLITICAL
Oscar winner Clint Eastwood is putting the brakes on suggestions that he's steering a political message in his Super Bowl ad for Chrysler. The 81-year-old actor and director told Fox News late Monday there was no intentional spin on the ad and dismissed Republican criticism that it was a political plug for President Obama in response to the government's bailout of the auto industry.
CONGRESS FACES PAYROLL TAX CUT DEADLINE. AGAIN.
Congress is facing another deadline to extend the payroll tax cut. A 20-member House-Senate conference committee has three hearings scheduled on the issue this week, and the first one is this morning. Some members of Congress think another short-term extension might be the best they can do right now.
FED RESERVE CHAIRMAN TESTIFIES ABOUT BUDGET
Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke returns to Capitol Hill for another hearing today. Bernanke is set to testify before the Senate Budget Committee. In a House hearing last week, Bernanke again cautioned lawmakers about cutting spending too drastically, warning that it could unnecessarily impede the ongoing recovery. At the same time, he stressed the importance of curbing soaring federal deficits.
QUESTIONS AFTER UNARMED NEW YORK TEEN SHOT BY COPS
A New York community is demanding answers after an unarmed teen was shot and killed in his own home after running from police last week. About 500 people marched through the streets last night in the Bronx in protest of the shooting death of 19-year-old Ramarley Graham. Residents are outraged after police shot Graham in his own bathroom after chasing him in connection with a suspected drug deal.
BP HIGHER PROFITS FOURTH QUARTER
British oil giant BP reports higher profits for the fourth quarter of 2011, and the entire year. BP's profits for the last three months of the year totalled more than seven-and-a-half billion dollars. The company's total-year profit was just under 24-billion dollars.
OPPONENTS SAY CONGRESS WENT TOO FAR IN OBAMA HEALTHCARE
Opponents say Congress exceeded its authority in ordering all Americans to buy medical insurance under President Obama's sweeping healthcare law. Attorneys for states and a national business organization filed arguments with the Supreme Court Monday. The so-called individual mandate requires people to buy health insurance by 2014 or pay a penalty. The Obama administration filed arguments last month claiming the individual mandate is a constitutional attempt to respond to a crisis in the nation's healthcare system. The court will hear oral arguments in the case next month.
PRESIDENT OBAMA'S GRANDMOTHER RECOVERING AFTER CAR CRASH
GREEK WORKERS PROTESTING NEW AUSTERITY MEASURES
Greek workers are going out on strike Tuesday. Greece's two main labor unions called a 24-hour strike to protest new austerity measures. The government announced Monday it'll cut 15-thousand state jobs this year, in its efforts to arrange new debt agreements with the nation's creditors.