2018-01-01 00:00:00 ..
2018-01-17 20:14:45 UTC
2018-01-18 08:18:51 UTC
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Residents near a chemical plant in Crosby, TX — approximately 25 miles (40km) northeast of Houston — have been evacuated due to the possibility of an explosion:
Arkema SA expects chemicals to catch fire or explode at its heavily flooded plant in Crosby, Texas in the coming days because the plant has lost power to its chemical cooling systems, a company official said on Wednesday.
The company evacuated remaining workers on Tuesday, and Harris County ordered the evacuation of residents in a 1.5-mile(2.4-km) radius of the plant that makes organic peroxides used in the production of plastic resins, polystyrene, paints and other products.
Richard Rowe, chief executive officer of Arkema's North America unit, told reporters that chemicals on the site will catch fire and explode if they are not properly cooled.
Arkema expects that to happen within the next six days as temperatures rise. He said the company has no way to prevent that because the plant is swamped by about 6 feet (1.83 m) of water due to flooding from Harvey, which came ashore in Texas last week as a powerful Category 4 hurricane.
"Materials could now explode and cause a subsequent and intense fire. The high water that exists on site, and the lack of power, leave us with no way to prevent it," Rowe said. He said he believes a fire would be "largely sustained on our site but we are trying to be conservative."
From the company's web site:
Our Crosby facility makes organic peroxides, a family of compounds that are used in everything from making pharmaceuticals to construction materials. But organic peroxides may burn if not stored and handled under the right conditions. At Crosby, we prepared for what we recognized could be a worst case scenario. We had redundant contingency plans in place. Right now, we have an unprecedented 6 feet of water at the plant. We have lost primary power and two sources of emergency backup power. As a result, we have lost critical refrigeration of the materials on site that could now explode and cause a subsequent intense fire. The high water and lack of power leave us with no way to prevent it. We have evacuated our personnel for their own safety. The federal, state and local authorities were contacted a few days ago, and we are working very closely with them to manage this matter. They have ordered the surrounding community to be evacuated, too.
Rather than putting pressure on the businesspeople of the Manufacturing Council & Strategy & Policy Forum, I am ending both. Thank you all!
3M Co. Chief Executive Officer Inge Thulin stepped down from the White House's manufacturing council, adding to the corporate exodus as the backlash grows to President Donald Trump's ambivalent response to racially-charged violence in Virginia over the weekend.
Thulin joined the White House panel in January "to advocate for policies that align with our values and encourage even stronger investment and job growth -- in order to make the United States stronger, healthier and more prosperous," the CEO said Wednesday in a statement tweeted by 3M. "After careful consideration, I believe the initiative is no longer an effective vehicle for 3M to advance these goals."
Update: The members of the Strategic and Policy Forum reportedly disbanded the group before President Trump's tweet:
The quick sequence began late Wednesday morning when Stephen A. Schwarzman, the chief executive of the Blackstone Group and one of Mr. Trump's closest confidants in the business community, organized a conference call for members of the president's Strategic and Policy Forum. On the call, the chief executives of some of the largest companies in the country debated how to proceed. After a discussion among a dozen prominent C.E.O.s, the decision was made to abandon the group altogether, said people with knowledge of the details of the call.
Also at Bloomberg:
Trump made the announcement on Twitter, less than an hour after one of the groups was said to be planning to inform the White House that it would break up. [...] Trump appeared to be making an effort to get ahead of the news as the councils began to disintegrate. The strategy forum, which is led by Blackstone Group LP's Stephen Schwarzman, planned to inform the White House Wednesday before making the announcement public, according to another person familiar with the matter, who wasn't authorized to discuss the news publicly.
The new Dr Who has been announced....
I'll get the popcorn..
Jodie Whittaker has been announced as Doctor Who's 13th Time Lord - the first woman to get the role.
She was revealed in a trailer that was broadcast on BBC One at the end of the Wimbledon men's singles final.
The Broadchurch star succeeds Peter Capaldi, who took the role in 2013 and leaves in this year's Christmas special.
Whittaker, 35, said it was "more than an honour" to become the Doctor. She will make her debut on the sci-fi show when the Doctor regenerates in the Christmas Day show.
We're a bit late to the party, but for those who haven't seen on the Internet, today is a protest day for Net Neutrality, where sites across the internet are disrupting their normal operations to get the word out and get people to send a message. Ars Technica already has a fairly decent summary of who's doing what, and we stand with them and the rest of the Internet.
Due to real life issues, I was late on getting this together, but for the rest of the day, this article will remain on the top of the page
and we will be blacking the theme of the site in protest [Technical issues among others precluded our doing so today --martyb].
Let's get the word out!
A U.S. Navy vessel has collided with a container vessel southwest of Yokosuka, Japan:
Seven U.S. sailors are unaccounted for after a Navy destroyer collided with a merchant ship southwest of Yokosuka, Japan, early Saturday local time, a U.S. official and the Navy said.
Some flooding was reported aboard the USS Fitzgerald, a 505-foot destroyer, after the collision with a Philippine container vessel at approximately 2:30 a.m. Saturday local time (1:30 p.m. ET Friday), about 56 nautical miles of Yokosuka, the U.S. 7th Fleet said.
Also at Reuters.
mrpg wrote in with another story about a U.S. Navy sailor who was reported missing and presumed dead after a search by the Navy, Japan Maritime Self-Defense Force, and Japan's Coast Guard. He was found days later, hiding in one of the engine rooms.
A gunman opened fire at U.S. Congressmen and others who were gathered at a practice this morning for the Congressional Baseball Game. House Majority Whip Steve Scalise and at least four others were reportedly injured. The gunman, who has been identified by unnamed sources as James T. Hodgkinson III, was taken to a local hospital where he died from his injuries:
A gunman unleashed a barrage of gunfire Wednesday at a park in Alexandria, Va., as Republican members of Congress held a morning baseball practice, wounding at least five people, including House Majority Whip Steve Scalise (La.).
The suspected gunman is James T. Hodgkinson III, 66, from Illinois, according to multiple law enforcement sources. President Trump announced that the gunman, who was wounded in a shootout with officers, has died at an area hospital.
The wounded also included two Capitol Police officers and a congressional aide, according to one law enforcement official and witness accounts.
Congressman Scalise was shot in the hip and is in stable condition.
Hodgkinson's motive may have already been identified by the media:
A Facebook page belonging to a person with the same name includes pictures of Democratic presidential candidate, Bernie Sanders, and rhetoric against President Trump, including a post that reads: "Trump is a Traitor. Trump Has Destroyed Our Democracy. It's Time to Destroy Trump & Co."
Charles Orear, 50, a restaurant manager from St. Louis, said in an interview Wednesday that he became friendly with Hodgkinson during their work together in Iowa on Sanders's campaign. Orear said Hodgkinson was a passionate progressive and showed no signs of violence or malice toward others.
Armed police respond to serious incidents at London Bridge and Borough Market – with members of the public urged to reach areas of safety.
Since late yesterday evening [Saturday, 3 June], the Metropolitan Police Service has been responding to incidents in the London Bridge and Borough Market areas of south London. We are treating this as a terrorist incident and a full investigation is already underway, led by the Met’s Counter Terrorism Command.
[...] Six people have been killed in terror attacks on London Bridge and at Borough Market.
Three male suspects have been shot dead by police.
Canisters seen around the body of at least one of the suspects have been “established to be hoaxes”, police said.
Police believe all of those directly responsible for the attack have been killed.
[...] Since March there has been the Westminster attack by Khalid Masood, who mowed down pedestrians near parliament and stabbed a policeman, resulting in six deaths, including his own: and the Manchester bombing two weeks ago that killed 22. And now London again.
[...] An editor in the Sun’s London Bridge Street office says police confirmed that a number of blasts heard [...] were controlled explosions.
Source: The Guardian
An investigation into the foreign funding of extremist Islamist groups may never be published, the Home Office has admitted.
The inquiry commissioned by David Cameron, was launched as part of a deal with the Liberal Democrats in December 2015, in exchange for the party supporting the extension of British airstrikes against Isis into Syria.
But although it was due to be published in the spring of 2016, it has not been completed and may never be made public due to its "sensitive" contents.
It is thought to focus on Saudi Arabia, which the UK recently approved £3.5bn worth of arms export licences to.
Source: The Independent