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tv   CBS Evening News With Norah O Donnell  CBS  September 5, 2019 6:30pm-7:00pm PDT

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captioning sponsored by cbs >>o'donnell: tonight, on the cbs evening news, hurricane dorian thrashes the carolinas. about a dozen tornadoes reported. authorities here in myrtle beach are worried about wind gusts topping 80 miles an hour. >>stay off the streets. it's very dangerous. >>o'donnell: the next 24 hours are crucial. we'll have the latest on where dorian is headed. also tonight, the death toll is rising in the bahamas as dorian survivors tell us of agonizing waits for help. >>my brother's roof collapsed on my sister-in-law. she was trapped underneath the roof for 17 hours. >>o'donnell: breaking news: federal investigators may be zeroing in on what caused a california dive boat to catch fire, killing 34 on board. new tonight: health officials may have found an important clue in those mysterious illnesses caused by vaping.
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and a mission of mercy to a remote island cut off by dorian. this is the cbs evening news with norah o'donnell reporting tonight from myrtle beach, south carolina. >>o'donnell: and good evening. this is our western edition. we are really beginning to feel dorian's fury here in the united states. this is the fourth straight night we've been covering this hurricane, but this is the first time we were nearly blown over by its winds. the hurricane center is less than 50 miles from where we are standing. the storm now stretches 690 miles from top to bottom. that is bigger than north and south carolina combined. now, along with the wind and the rain, dorian is now spinning off tornadoes, about 15 so far, including one in north carolina that wiped out an r.v. park. electrical wires have been snapping and transformers
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glowing. nearly 250,000 homes and businesses have lost their power alone here in south carolina. and charleston's lost about 150 trees. the most immediate danger here in the carolinas is flooding from the storm surge, and potentially more than a foot of rain. today in the bahamas, the official death toll was raised to 23, but, again, that number is expected to rise dramatically. by one early estimate, damage tops $7 billion. tonight hurricane dorian is headed slowly up the coast, top winds at the center about 105 miles an hour. the forecast has it moving near or over the north carolina coast early tomorrow in what could be its first landfall on the u.s. mainland. we have a team of correspondents following dorian and we're going to begin with jamie yuccas, who is about 100 miles south of here in charleston. and jamie, charleston has really been right in the thick of it. >>reporter: they have. conditions are starting to improve. that's the good news. the bad news-- we're getting our
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first look at the damage. and you can see there's a lot of debris, including trees that have toppled into roadways. you can hear saws up and down the streets working to clear this as fast as possible. dorian's eye closed within 55 miles of charleston, bringing with it gusts of more than 70 miles an hour and almost a foot of rain. most businesses boarded up downtown, except for coffee shop one broad street, where employees took refuge on the second floor of this concrete, civil war-era building. so you stayed here last night. >>yeah, tent city. >>reporter: why? >>the storm was looking kind of rough, and didn't want to drive back over the bridge last night. >>reporter: this was always the greatest concern in charleston-- flash flooding. you can see the waters are above my knee. and while we may have gotten a break from storm surge, it's still raining and has been for quite some time. downed power lines and exploding
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transformers left almost 200,000 residents without power in south carolina. the governor urged people to stay home. fallen trees and debris littered much of charleston, but there were those who refused to hunker down. what possessed you guys to grab your fishing pole and come out? >>my love for fishing, i guess. it's been my dream to do it in a hurricane. >>reporter: i just talked to power crews here on scene. they tell me that they will be working 24 hours a day to get power restored, but with 200,000 people without, that's going to take some time. norah. >>o'donnell: all right, jamie, thank you so much. dorian's winds and rain are damaging enough, but its outer bands are also spinning off tornadoes. jonathan vigliotti is in emerald isle, north carolina. jonathan, one of those twisters i understand caused a lot of damage. >>reporter: norah, all of this wind whipping up one strong tornado, powerful enough to flip
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over mobile homes, completely damage vehicles and toss around all of the belongings that were inside. all of this as residents were actually here preparing their homes for the hurricane. a monster before the storm. the tornado in emerald isle started as a water spout but came ashore leaving a path of destruction. the damage is extensive, permanent mobile homes ripped through and gutted, belongings scattered on the street. the boardwalk r.v. park was boarded up ahead of dorian, but plywood and sandbags was no match for what struck hours earlier. john flick and his wife were in their home finishing up storm prep when the twister hit. >>so we took shelter. >>reporter: you and your wife. >>me and my wife and the cat, took shelter. we went into the bathroom. power went out. we were there less than a minute. >>reporter: roofs of homes ripped off, others tossed like toys. tornado sirens echoed throughout the carolinas, tornadoes
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touching down from north myrtle beach to pender county. at least 15 tornadoes in all. no calm before the storm here. >>i'm damn lucky. >>reporter: and flick tells me amazingly nobody was majorly injured in this tornado. but now all of this debris, norah, could become projectiles as dorian closes in. norah. >>o'donnell: all right, jonathan, thank you. the damage here pales in comparison to what we saw when we flew in a coast guard plane over grand bahamas and abaco islands. 180-mile-an-hour winds tore through neighborhoods like a buzz saw. we also met people like sandra cooke, who was just learning the fate of one of her relatives. what are you most worried about? >>well, i actually have a lot to be grateful for right now. my family was flown in this morning. my brother's roof collapsed on my sister-in-law. she was trapped underneath the roof for 17 hours. he couldn't find her. the dog found her. but he couldn't get her out. so it was 17 hours later that neighbors were able to come and help.
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>>o'donnell: just terrifying, and many hurricane survivors have been flown out of the hurricane zone to nassau, which was spared. our nikki battiste is also in nassau and has heard some incredible stories from those who made it out. >>glad to be alive. this is the second time in my life... it should ended >>reporter: but 75-year-old doug lived to tell a harrowing story of survival after his home, a boat, was swept away, leaving him in debris-filled water. >>i spent hours like this. >>reporter: water up to here? >>yeah. >>reporter: he was rescued from abaco island yesterday, and flown to princess et hospital, he says just in time to save his legs from amputation. >>believe in god. >>reporter: about 13 miles from the hospital, helicopters
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continue to fly in survivors, like one-year-old reign and her mother ostina dean. >>what kept me going was the child. that was it. i looked at her and i was like, "nope, my baby is not going out like this." >>reporter: her entire family was rescued from abaco island today, including 11-year-old zion. >>my heart just stopped. like, i stopped. like, i was panicking. i couldn't-- i opened my eyes wide. i couldn't believe what i was seeing. everything gone. people going into the water with dead bodies. all over, dead bodies. >>reporter: for now, ostina says they're heading to stay with family in nassau. >>we're alive. >>reporter: but their future is still unclear. do you have any idea where you'll be in a month, two months? >>no. hopefully still alive and-- we're here. so we're hopeful, and we're going to-- we made it through that, so we're going to do our best to make it through this. >>reporter: hospital staffers here at the airport are ready to
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get more wounded survivors off planes and into ambulances. norah, a hospital representative told me some patients are so distraught after losing their family members, they're saying they want to die. >>o'donnell: oh! nikki, that is unimaginable. thank you. tonight, errol barnett is getting on a supply ship out of nassau. it is loaded with desperately needed supplies and headed for grand bahama island. >>reporter: supplies can't be loaded fast enough. bahamaians at the capital's ferry terminal are anxious to send essentials to family and friends in freeport. >>they don't have no foodstuff, nowhere to buy it because the food stores overflowed. >>reporter: this ferry will make its first trip to grand bahama island since hurricane dorian devastated it over the weekend. this shows you the scale of the effort to get to the hardest hit areas. behind me, folks lined up to buy a ticket to get on the ferry to freeport.
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these supplies will sit along 16,000 pounds of goods sent by american airlines for said staffers. operations agent darcel radon says her family is stranded. >>it's so terrifying. it's really hard, you know. >>reporter: we will be aboard this vessel and be a part of its nine-hour, overnight journey to freeport. but there has been a further delay. the captain's assistant tells us they're still cleaning up the main port there on grand bahama island, so it can receive this aid. norah. >>o'donnell: all right, errol. thank you. hopefully that gets there soon. meteorologist megan glaros from our chicago station wbbm is tracking dorian. and megan, i understand these next few hours are going to be very critical. >>absolutely, norah. because not only are we looking at potential storm surge for parts of the carolina coastline. we're also looking at fresh water flooding, tornadoes, and the hurricane itself. all these things come together. and what we're dealing with at the moment-- here you are in
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myrtle beach. and just offshore is that center of circulation. now the eye is becoming a little more ragged at this point. interestingly enough, it's not necessarily right by the eye where we have the concerns over potential tornado activity. that's essentially in what we call the right-front quadrant. so that's right here. and it's been parts of north carolina where tornadoes have been the highest threat today. now, where does the storm go from here? first of all, we know it is a category 2. it is weakening. running into cooler water, more sheer, friction from land. all of these things are serving to weaken it a bit. it's moving north-northeast at eight, and let's take a look at that track which essentially has it gone pretty much 24 hours from now. now while the storm may leave by the weekend, norah, i can guarantee you the national hurricane center is going to retire the name dorian. norah. >>o'donnell: no doubt, megan. thank you so much. president trump now claims he has further proof that he was right when he said on sunday that alabama would be impacted by hurrican dorian.
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yesterday he held up a forecast map which showed alabama in dorian's path. but it appeared to be doctored. late today he tweeted four national weather service maps showing the state with a 5% to 10% chance of tropical-storm- force winds. the maps were from last thursday and friday and were out of date by the time he made the claim. there is breaking news from southern california, where a wildfire is now threatening 2,000 homes. it's burning near the city of murrieta. that's about 75 miles southeast of los angeles. fire officials say it may have been sparked by lightning yesterday. strong winds caused it to flare up today. and late today, federal investigators revealed a possible cause of monday's dive boat disaster. 34 people were killed when the boat caught fire and sank off santa cruz island in southern california. kris van cleave has our update. >>reporter: investigators tell cbs news they increasingly believe the fire started on the ship's second level, known as the galley, trapping 34 people below deck, their only two exits blocked by fire, including a
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small escape hatch above a bunk bed. did it surprise you how small the second exit was? >>it did. it surprised me how small it was. it surprised me how difficult it was to access. >>reporter: in lengthy interviews with n.t.s.b. investigators, the surviving crew members described harrowing moments after the fire started. >>they tried to enter through the double doors and couldn't get in because of the flames. they tried to access the galley from the front, through the windows, but the windows wouldn't open. and at some point, because of heat and smoke and fire, they had jumped from the boat. >>reporter: among the possible causes the n.t.s.b. is considering, did lithium ion batteries used to power the passengers' underwater cameras or lights malfunction during charging and overheat? it can take the n.t.s.b. a year or more to determine if those batteries or something else started this fire. to do that, they've got to raise the boat, and the effort to raise it is being stalled by increasingly strong winds here
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over the next few days. also, the n.t.s.b. is trying to figure out which crew member acted as the night watchman and what that person may have seen. norah. >>o'donnell: all right, kris, thank you so much. more breaking news now: a verdict of not guilty tonight in the so-called ghost ship trial. 36 people died in december of 2016 when a fire destroyed a warehouse in oakland, california. the two men who ran the warehouse were charged with involuntary manslaughter. max harris was found not guilty. the jury could not reach a verdict for derick almena. there is still much more ahead on tonight's cbs evening news. breaking news in the nationwide vaping crisis. a possible cause for many of those mysterious illnesses. an arizona officer quits before atg ca o later, the top chef who has made it his mission to feed the victims of natural disasters. everything was so fresh in the beginning. ♪ [sniff] ♪ dramatic music♪ but that plug quickly faded. ♪upbeat music luckily there's febreze plug.
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>>o'donnell: there is a major break tonight in the nationwide vaping crisis. public health officials say some of the marijuana products that recently sickened users across the country contained the same chemical. it's a type of oil made from vitamin e. harmless when used as a supplement or skin ointment, but apparently not safe for vaping. at least two deaths are linked to vaping, the latest in oregon. dean reynolds spoke today with a young man who nearly died from vaping. >>reporter: how do you feel physically now? >>i'm getting better now that i'm off oxygen. but when i first got here, it was-- it was, like, a big barrel was on my chest. >>reporter: when he got to advocate condell medical center in libertyville, illinois, on saturday, 18-year-old adam hergenreder was feverish, vomiting, and gasping for breath. from what doctors here know of his case, vaping nearly killed him. stephen amesbury is his pulmonologist. any doubt in your mind that vaping is responsible for this? >>there doesn't seem to be anything else turning up in these cases.
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we looked for potential causes, but we haven't been able to find anything else. >> reporter: adam's mother, polly, drove him to the hospital. did you ever think that your son might die? >> yes. the doctor said he would have died that night. his lungs would have collapsed and he would have died. >> reporter: adam told us he had been vaping for two years, addicted, he said, to the buzz it gave him from nicotine, then the high from marijuana, or t.h.c., its primary ingredient. how do you get that, you know, the t.h.c.? >>i got it from, like, a drug dealer, or whatever. >>reporter: did he assure you it was okay? >>sure, sure, yeah. >>reporter: but you don't know whether it was okay or not-- >>right. >>reporter: the c.d.c. has identified more than 200 cases like adam's nationwide, and the number is growing. dean reynolds, cbs news, libertyville, illinois. >>o'donnell: and coming up, a university is slapped with a record fine in one of the most shocking sexual abuse cases in
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>> o'donnell: the latest track puts hurricane dorian on a path toward making landfall somewhere on north carolina's outer banks tomorrow morning. top winds near the center are 105 miles an hour. we're going to end tonight with a mission of mercy. david begnaud traveled with chef jose andres, whose world central kitchen delivers meals after natural disasters strike. >> reporter: we took off from nassau with a helicopter full of hope, so much food, water, and fruit that some of it was in chef jose andres' lap. >> we're going to deliver 7,500 meals, but for me, this is half of what we are supposed to be doing already. >> reporter: we first landed in green turtle key in abaco, bahamas. >> so we are bringing you sandwiches today. >> reporter: and people were waiting. on this island of 550 people looked as though most every structure was damaged or destroyed. >> we lost the house, we lost everything, but we're okay.
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>> reporter: that's why the delivery from chef andres matters. from here the chef headed to treasure cay. >> we are going to feed you all. i promise. >> reporter: a woman at the community center told the chef what they need for this community of roughly 1,500 people. >> pasta, pasta sauce, canned goods. >> people are getting violent, angry, upset. >> reporter: before we left i asked volunteer fireman greg johnson to give us an assessment of the current conditions. >> at this point in time we are on our own and the u.s. is the only place that is helping us. >> reporter: and tonight a research ship with more than 20,000 meals is on the way, hired by the chef and his team of humanitarian cooks from world central kitchen who are on a mission to give hope with food. david begnaud, cbs news, nassau. >> o'donnell: and they do such an incredible job. that is the cbs evening news. i'm norah o'donnell in myrtle beach, south carolina. for all of those in the hurricane's path, stay safe. and thanks for watching. good night.
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this isn't a time to celebrate for max harris. one of the defendant the ghost ship warehouse trial max harris is a free man. the family of the victims angry and emotional tonight. he was willing to take a plea deal for six years. you tell me if that is a not guilty person. what is next for derick almena. after the jury deadlocks on his case. i am frustrated. but we will win next time. we just learned about another bay area victim and the dive boat tragedy. investigators describe their haunting final moments. they then tried to go to the front part of the vessel. to get into the window portion.


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