tv America This Morning ABC September 3, 2010 3:00am-3:30am PST
>> have a great friday. we are tracking hurricane earl on this friday, september 3rd. >> wind and rain are lashing the north carolina coast right now. and storm warnings are in effect all the way up to maine. >> but as the storm spins toward new england, is the worst still to come? the latest news coverage on where earl is now and where it's going. and good morning, everyone. i'm rob nelson. >> and i'm mike marusarz, in for vinita nair. wind and rain from hurricane earl is pounding north carolina's outer banks, with gusts of more than 70 miles per hour, plus, 20-foot waves. >> here, now, is the very latest. the storm is still powerful. but has weakened now to a
category 2. long island and new england are now bracing for earl, with power crews as far away as michigan, now on alert. and many transit agencies have a canceled or altered their routes today. >> the storm is sending huge bands of rain inland, as it spins up the coast like a buzz saw. we'll have more from marc mancuso, in a moment. let's go live to emily schmidt, who is in atlantic beach, this morning. good morning, emily. >> reporter: good morning to you. we, for the last half hour or so, have been in the one of t one of the rain bands. it is raining here and the winds are blowing. but there's one more thing. there's a big sense of relief, that so far, right here, earl has not been as bad as once feared. this is hurricane earl as it began to move past atlantic beach, north carolina, overnight. gusting winds, rain, and rough ocean water. but not as bad as many expected. it's brushing the outer banks as a category 2 storm, after people
here spent days preparing for what was a category 4. >> i think it's a serious hurricane. it could get real dangerous in a hurry. so, why take a chance? >> reporter: officials evacuated 100,000 tourists from the outer banks and closed the roads behind them. even though earl is no longer a major hurricane, it could still pose plenty of problems up the eastern seaboard. >> just to be able to be mindful of what could be happening is critical over the next 18 hours. >> take this seriously and be prepared. but don't panic. >> reporter: the governor of massachusetts declared a state of emergency on thursday. overnight, president obama signed an emergency disaster declaration, that clears the way for federal response there. it mirrors the response to earl in north carolina. >> we'll be staging commodities such as water, food, as well as generators. >> reporter: fema has set up a staging area, bringing in flat-bed trucks with generators and enough supplies to feed
50,000 people through the weekend. even though the eye is much less defined, people from north carolina to cape cod aren't quite ready to blink just yet. there are reports of some power outages in other parts of the outer banks. so far, the lights remain on here. this rain is expected to fall probably through most of the morning. although, we're told there could be sunny skies by the end of the day. hard to believe. we got a long ways to go before we get there. rob and mike? >> certainly. and how have you seen conditions change where you are this morning? >> reporter: you know, last night, as we lhe stuff in the afternoon, you saw the surf was really pounding. and you thought, this is going to get bad. when you look right now and you see how strong the surf is, it's not that much different than it was probably ten hours ago or so. this rain gets really heavy. then, it kind of abates a little bit. coming back and forth. we're expecting that for the next few hours. when you're walking, you can
stand up straight. it pushes on your back. but nothing what they were expecting even just 14 hours ago. >> emily schmidt, live in north carolina. emily, we'll check in with you in a bit. but accuweather.com's marc mancuso, is tracking earl. and we heard about the possibility of sunshine later today. where is earl headed next? >> earl is still on a track, headed to the northeast. it will get close to new england. but we're heavily situated. you can see right here, there's a sharp cutoff to the clouds and earl will pick up speed. conditions will strange rapidly in eastern north carolina by this afternoon. it's a category 2. so, it's not the monster that we had yesterday. but still a dangerous system. winds 105 miles per hour. gusts even higher. center circulation about 85 miles southeast of north carolina. it is set to accelerate northeastward.
we're looking at increasing wind and rain tonight. big problem here, the trees. get the winds. the tropical storm-force, maybe the hurricane-force here. that's going to knock down trees, tree limbs. there's going to be a lot of problems here with debris over cape cod and power outages. here's the radar. and you see the sharp cutoff for the rain there. rains increasing now in the southeastern parts of virginia, right around virginia beach. it's getting windy and wet. there you see a tropical storm force, in east north carolina. those will be heading right on up into southern new england tonight. that's when the big problems will be occurring with the wind and the rain. it will be significant. back to you guys. >> all right, mark mancuso, accuweather.com. we'll check in with mark later this half hour. abc's coverage of earl, will continue all morning long on "gma" and abcnews.com. and a security scare at the miami airport. four concourses were evacuated
overnight, while the bomb squad investigated reports of a suspicious package. the initial report came from the area of the international arrivals. the tsa says one person has been taken into custody. they're not getting details just yet on what may have been inside of that package. anyone traveling outside of miami, is told to call their carrier for possible delays. engineers are starting to look into the reasons for an oil rig explosion in the gulf of mexico. eric barajas has the details from louisiana. >> reporter: concern over an oil well explosion, soon gave way to relief. all 13 workers onboard were accounted for. rescued while floating in the gulf. >> all 13 members aboard the oil platform have survived with no serious injuries. >> reporter: the explosion occurred thursday morning.roducn an oil production platform located in shallow waters in the gulf ignited.
>> it is a production platform and not a drilling rig. >> reporter: coast guard officials say workers were able to shut down production before evacuating the facility. the owner of the platform, mariner energy, says it has seven wells that produce oil and natural gas. officials do not know what caused the explosion. >> when we asked the specific work they were doing, they weren't able to confirm for us what their responsibilities were. >> reporter: there were reports of a mile-long oil sheen spotted near the blast site. coast guard knocked down those reports. >> coast guard helicopters on-scene and helicopters on-scene have no visible reports of a sheen on the water. >> we obviously have response assets ready for deployment, should we receive reports of pollution in the water. >> reporter: congress isn't wasting any time with another oil platform explosion. some house democrats are already demanding answers.
the house energy and commerce committee is asking scott josie, president and ceo of mariner energy, for a briefing on the incident. for abc news, eric barajas, houma, louisiana. here's the rest of the morning's weather from the rest of the nation. a wet day from the great lakes down to texas. with thunderstorms in detroit, cincinnati and nashville. fall-like temperatures with right rain across minnesota and wisconsin. meanwhile, some showers across south florida. >> cooling down in the nation's midsection. just 62 in minneapolis. 71 in chicago. and 75 in kansas city. mostly 80s in the northeast. and 93 in atlanta. phoenix hits 109. sacramento, 95. and salt lake city, 86. when we come back on this friday morning, new hope for middle east peace, as hillary clinton takes a key role in the ongoing talks. plus, how clean is your kitchen? will it stand up to a real
restaurant inspection? and of course, we continue to track hurricane earl. strong bands of rain have come ashore overnight. we'll get another live update from north carolina. with capital one's venture card, we get double miles on every purchase. echo! so we earned a trip to the grand canyon twice as fast. uh-oh. we get double miles every time we use our card. i'll take these. no matter what we're buying. plus the damages. and since double miles add up quick, we can bring the whole gang. it's hard to beat double miles. no, we ride them! [ male announcer ] introducing the venture card from capital one, with double miles on every purchase every day. go to capitalone.com. what's in your wallet? oh, that's the spot!
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monthly checkup. the labor department looks at the labor report this morning. the unemployment rate will rise just slightly. it was 9.5% last month. the number of americans filing for first-time jobless claims did drop last week. overseas markets are getting a boost. tokyo's nikkei average picked up more than 50 points today. hong kong's hang seng is higher in late trading. meanwhile, in london, the ftse . and wall street gained 50 points yesterday. the nasdaq rose 23 points. retail sales were an economic bright spot in august. major chain stores report sales were up 3.3%. back-to-school shoppers provided the biggest boost. the numbers show americans were looking for -- or are still waiting for the biggest bargains. and the gulf coast fishing industry is back in business. today, the federal government says fishing and shrimping can resume from eastern louisiana to
florida's pan handing. the government scientists show no signs of oil from the bp oil spill. the rugt of an investigation of a new kind of pampers is in. it stemmed from 4,700 complaints of severe rashes, all among children who had sworn swader will and cruiser dry max diapers. investigators did not find a direct link between the diapers and rashes. but parents were urged to report any more complaints. next, more live coverage of earl. a major storm making its presence felt along the outer banks overnight. plus, arizona's outspoken governor in the headlines yet again. for a moment, though, she'd rather forget. rise and shine!
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on that track, it will stay away from mid-atlantic states. but it will brush by long island, cape cod and nantucket. and we'll know much more about the storm's impact on north carolina, at first light this morning. >> abc's steven portnoy has been riding out the storm in kill devil hills. steven, what's the latest where you are? >> reporter: good morning, guys. we're getting the brunt of it. wind gusts of about 60 miles per hour. they're not hurricane-force winds. but strong, tropical storm-force winds. the kind of winds that will knock your balance off. but not take you down. we've not seen any debris flying here, although the wind has shaken poles and traffic lights are swaying. and street lamps are bobbing up and down. but everything is still on. we still have electricity here. that's a good thing, a good sign. if this is as bad as it gets, guys, i'll say this area of the carolina coast, got off easy. >> no doubt about that, steven.
carolina in the brunt of it now. much of the northeast are bracing to see what earl tends to be once it gets there. a lot of people preparing for the worst. >> a wet day along the east coast. steven, thank you for that. we continue to get new information about earl's track, by the hour. >> that's right. accuweather.com's mark mancuso has an update on the track of earl. mark, what do you know? >> i don't think it will get worse on the outer worse on the i think we're seeing the worst and the rain. the core of the system, a little farther to the east. if this takes a jog east or west, it will have bigger impacts. it took a jog to the east. that's why the power is a little less. it's still a category 2. you see the tropical storm-force winds. the hurricane-force, well offshore here. they will continue to stay that way until south new england. hammering north carolina. we had three to four inches of rain. heavy rains, eastern new england. combine that with the strong winds coming in tonight.
a lot of problems with power outages here. cape cod and the highlands here. notice along the east coast, gusty winds and a couple showers. back to you. >> okay. mark mancuso, thanks for the update. in other news, science of progress in the middle east peace talks. palestinian president abbas and israeli prime minister netanyahu have agreed to meet again in two weeks to resume negotiations likely in egypt. the leaders also agreed to meet every two weeks after that. secretary of state hillary clinton says she will keep a watchful eye. >> this is in the national security interests of the united states. but we cannot and we will not impose a solution. in the middle east, militant groups have vowed to step up attacks against israel, in an effort to disrupt the ongoing peace process. now, what's being called the largest human trafficking case in u.s. history. six suspects are accused of
luring 400 laborers from thailand to the united states. allegedly forcing them to work in sites across the country. if convicted, the suspects could face up to 70 years in prison. arizona governor jan brewer is acknowledging she could have done better in his latest debate. brewer has been in the national spotlight, since signing her state's immigration law in april. wednesday night, she was facing her democratic challenger, when it all went wrong during her opening statement. >> and we are moving forward. we have done everything that we could possibly do. we have -- did what was right for arizona. i will tell you, that i have really did the very best that anyone could do. we have pushed back hard against the federal government. we have filed suit against obama
health care. we have passed senate bill 1070. and we will continue to do what's right for arizona. >> talk about a brain-freeze for the governor. she walked out of a post-debate session with reporters. after being asked about headily bod dmis the arizona desert. many americans would be surprised to learn they are preparing their meals in dirty kitchens. only 61% of home kitchens would get an "a" or "b" if put through the same type of inspections restaurants and businesses face. the study was based on an internet quiz, not inspections. but researchers say the actual failure rate is actually higher. well, coming up, more on the breaking news overnight from miami's airport. plus, north carolina, under the gun, right now from earl. we'll check in with emily schmidt, live on the coast. ♪ [ ] hey, max. [ announcer ] your dog's one of a kind.
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until you know how lyrica affects you. i found answers about fibromyalgia. then i found lyrica. ask your doctor about lyrica today. and welcome back, everybody. of course, hurricane earl is topping our look ahead to the stories making news today. >> for the latest, we check in with emily schmidt, who is live on atlantic beach in north carolina. emily, what's the situation now? >> reporter: rob and mike, what's interesting is if you look behindou can see the me, lights on the pier, even though earl is brushing the outer banks of the north carolina coast right now. the lights are still on in this part of atlantic beach. the rain is falling. it's been falling pretty steady now for the last hour.
and off and on for the past few hours. waves are high. the wind is blowing strong. but certainly not as strong as once expected. yesterday at this time, we were. this is a category 2. much better than folks expected here in north carolina. now, we'll watch it as it goes north. >> emily, thanks to you. you and your crew stay safe. >> good news for folks in that part of the country. also making news today, investigators are trying to figure out why another rig in the gulf of mexico exploded. the rig's 13 crew members were rescued after jumping into the water. a mile-long oil sheen was reported in the area. but the coast guard said no oil was actually found. a passenger at miami's airport, taken into custody after screeners said they found something suspicious in a bag. the bomb squad inspected the airport this morning. for forecasting the unemployment report will rise.
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hurricane earl. >> let's get a final check of the storm's track with accuweather's mark mancuso. mark, that is the question. where is earl headed? >> okay. earl will move rapidly north-northeastward today. it will weaken as it heads toward cape cod tonight. it should be a category 1 at that time. still, strong winds expected over southeastern new england tonight. heavy rains in eastern new england. that will cause a lot of problems with power outages in these areas. >> mark, thanks. finally this morning, as earl bears down on the east coast, we get a closer look at the anatomy of a hurricane. >> many people scramble to get out of harm's way. but others are running toward the storm. abc's john berman explains. >> reporter: our camera flew into the eye of the storm, as it began to break apart. this is the eyewall right ab abc's matt gutman was given an exclusive look at this nasa flight. earl is a somewhat diminished category 2 storm. but still, a powerful storm.
>> this is one of the most well-documented storms we've ever had. we've seen the storm strengthen and weaken. >> reporter: with gadgets like these capsules, dropped with parachutes into the storm. back on the ground, there are two sane things to do when a storm gets this close. leave or hunker down. then, there's a third option. go hunting. mark sutton and jeff bass are hurricane chasers. they spent the last ten years tracking hurricanes just like earl. driving into the eye of the storm to capture the images of fury. in 2004, there was charley. >> we are getting pounded. >> reporter: and ivan. >> the storm surge is coming in right now. >> reporter: and five years ago, katrina. for the hurricane chasers, it's about cinematography, setting up