first_img Related Items: Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsAppTURKS AND CAICOS ISLANDS, NOVEMBER 19, 2013- Talking to media recently about his government’s major accomplishments after one year in office, the Premier, Hon Rufus Ewing said he is proud with his government’s approach where financial management is concerned, despite having to resort to implementation of taxation measures; adding that his government is not happy about it, but found it a necessary move. Hon. Ewing however, cited room for improvement where job creation is concerned as he expressed that he would like to create more job opportunities. During a media debriefing last week, Hon Rufus Ewing admitted there is currently no proper documentation in the numbers of how many gained work since his team was elected…nor in the number of unemployed. On this matter he noted that the Statistics department is working on establishing those figures. Facebook Twitter Google+LinkedInPinterestWhatsApplast_img read more

Ferrari F8 Tributo oneups the 488 in Geneva with 710 hp

first_img 2019 Maserati Levante GTS: Heart of gold Now playing: Watch this: reading • Ferrari F8 Tributo one-ups the 488 in Geneva with 710 hp Geneva Motor Show 2019 Ferrari Review • 2016 Ferrari 488 GTB: As good as it gets Ferrari F8 Tributo is a 710-hp replacement for the 488 See All 2019 Lamborghini Urus review: Part SUV, part supercar 2020 Audi R8 first drive: Improving an already fantastic supercar 0 • The Ferrari F8 Tributo is the last of the nonhybrid V8s 67 Photos Mar 7 • New Peugeot 208 debuts i-Cockpit with 3D HUD Combo dashboard Mar 7 • The Ferrari F8 Tributo is the last of the nonhybrid V8scenter_img More From Roadshow Ferrari Geneva Motor Show 2019 3:19 Share your voice Exotic Cars Performance Cars Coupes The Ferrari 488 GTB was introduced in 2015 as the replacement for the 458 Italia. Now, the 488 is being replaced, but Ferrari’s changing up its nomenclature a bit — and adding more power, natch. Tags Post a comment Apr 17 • The 2020 Jaguar XE gets its first major visual refresh Mar 8 • VW is still ‘100 percent’ investigating a pickup truck for the US More about 2016 Ferrari 488 GTB The Ferrari F8 Tributo was unveiled last week, just ahead of its proper debut at the Geneva Motor Show. The 488’s successor builds upon an already excellent supercar with more power and a newer, flashier look. It still has a V8, but now it’s been tuned to put out about 710 horsepower and 568 pound-feet of torque, 50 hp more than the 488 GTB and about the same as the limited-edition 488 Pista, which debuted at Geneva last year.While the middle bit of the F8 Tributo might not look all that different from the 488, every other part of the body has been given a serious once-over. The nose looks longer and sleeker now, with some complicated ductwork in the lower part of the front bumper. Out back, the car clearly drew some inspiration from the larger 812 Superfast. As always, there’s a monstrous rear diffuser surrounding the tailpipes. There’s also a new polycarbonate engine cover that pays tribute to the hallowed F40.Enlarge ImageHard to believe it’s been almost five years since the 488 GTB debuted. Andrew Hoyle/Roadshow Ferrari says that the new bodywork contributes to a 10-percent improvement in aerodynamic efficiency. At the same time, the car is some 88 pounds lighter than the 488 it replaces, which means the car should seriously hustle. According to the automaker, the F8 Tributo will reach 62 miles per hour in just 2.9 seconds, continuing on until it reaches its top speed of 211 mph.The cabin’s been given a pretty hefty refresh, too. Ferrari says the dashboard, door panels and transmission tunnel have all been redesigned, and they look every bit as exotic as you’d expect from Ferrari. There’s also a new steering wheel, which has a smaller diameter than before, but it retains Ferrari staples like the “manettino” mode switch and the turn-signal buttons that replace the usual stalk. To keep passengers busy, there’s a 7-inch touchscreen display for them to fiddle with.While Ferrari hasn’t yet given a price for the F8 Tributo, for context’s sake, a 488 GTB retails around $250,000 before options and personalization. Odds are, buyers will probably spend a fair bit more than that.last_img read more

Why some senior bureaucrats will depart if PM Modi gets 2nd term

first_imgA supporter of Prime Minister Narendra Modi displays a paper cap with images of Modi and Indian Parliament during an election campaign rally in Junagadh, Gujarat.ReutersThe Indian government may have to make a series of major changes at the top of the nation’s civil service if Prime Minister Narendra Modi is re-elected to a second term in May, according to multiple sources in the administration.At least eight senior bureaucrats in the prime minister’s office have either sought a transfer to other departments or plan to take premature retirement, three government officials said. The officials, from the prime minister’s office, the home (interior) ministry and the foreign ministry, declined to be named because of the sensitivity of the subject.Two of them said they too are keen to be transferred to state capitals or to other jobs. They said officials in several ministries were trying to move but did not have a number.There are about 25 senior civil servants working in the prime minister’s office, which under Modi has become the single most powerful department in government.The three officials said the reasons for wanting out are almost all the same. Many top bureaucrats complained about two aspects of the Modi administration – their inability to influence government policy as it is largely controlled and set by the prime minister and a small group of ministers and advisers, and the demanding work schedule they face.”The sense of partnership is missing, Modi and his ministers do not have an organic relationship with the bureaucrats,” said the civil servant in the home ministry.Sanjay Mayukh, a spokesman for Modi’s ruling Bharatiya Janata Party (BJP), declined to comment on the grounds that governance issues were managed directly by ministers.A spokesman in the prime minister’s office did not return phone calls seeking comment.To be sure, some other major governments around the world often face a series of departures and changes, especially when the first-term morph into a second term.Also, just because an official talk about quitting doesn’t mean they will.But in India, officials in the prime minister’s office are hand-picked for loyalty and tend to stay if the administration is re-elected. Modi’s BJP-led alliance is tipped to win a slim majority in the April-May general election, pollsters say.Senior bureaucrats said Modi’s top-down approach, and his orders to work on public holidays, to demand they submit details of their assets, and to clean their own workplaces at the start of a five-year cleanliness campaign in 2014, has widened the gap between the civil servants and the nation’s leader.Amit Shah, a close aide of Modi and the head of the BJP, in a closed-door meeting attended by two ministers in February said bureaucrats continued to suffer from “communist romanticism”, a reference to the alleged influence of the left-leaning Congress opposition party on the bureaucrats. The ministers, who spoke to Reuters, declined to be identified.DISCONNECT WITH RULING PARTYFor some of the 5,000 or so mandarins who run the Indian government, its state-owned entities, as well as administration at a state government level, Modi’s style of leadership has been a jolt.Many of these top officials have received a Western-style education at India’s elite universities or schools overseas and are uncomfortable with the ruling party’s right-wing Hindu nationalism and Modi’s rough-hewn approach to governance.While getting into the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), is incredibly hard – only 1 out of about 4,500 who took the civil service exam got selected in 2018 – traditionally once someone got in they had a job for life with few risks of ever getting fired.An IAS job – one of the most sought after in India – bestows huge power as well as cheap housing, a car with a driver and other perks, leave for government-paid foreign study, and often the chance for plum positions in business or government consultative work after retirement. There is also a handsome pension.But such conditions can also breed complacency and a lack of ‘can do’ behaviour, according to Indian politicians and civil servants.They say there are plenty of Sir Humphreys in New Delhi, referring to a character in the British TV comedy series “Yes Minister” about how top officials in Whitehall stall government policies they don’t agree with.In particular, there is deep resentment in the top echelons of the Indian civil service over the interference in government by the Rashtriya Swayemsevak Sangh (RSS), the Hindu right-wing umbrella group of which the BJP is a part, these officials said.RSS functionaries have had a major role in successfully lobbying for big changes at the Reserve Bank of India, for example, leading to last December’s resignation of its governor and his replacement with an official who is considered more loyal to Modi, officials said.TECHNOCRATS, NOT GENERALISTSRSS figures also criticise Modi for not having enough professionally trained experts in place to implement some of his more controversial policies.”The country needs a professional administration for economic development and can’t depend on generalists,” said Ashwani Mahajan, co-convenor of the Swadeshi Jagran Manch (SJM), the economic wing of the RSS that has campaigned against some bureaucrats.Last year, Modi proposed bringing in at least ten professionals from the private sector into the civil service at the joint secretary level, but the plan has still to be implemented and is facing strong resistance from civil servants. Joint Secretaries are two rungs below full Secretaries, the top civil servant in a ministry.A senior finance ministry official said major policy decisions including demonetisation, Modi’s decision to wipe out high-denomination bank notes without warning in 2016 and to hastily launch a goods and services tax that hit millions of small businesses and jobs, were examples of political decisions that didn’t get enough airing among officials before being implemented. Both are thought to have hurt jobs growth, economists say.There is a wider concern in the civil service about India being ruled by a Hindu nationalist party that some see destroying the country’s previous tolerant and secular nature.But the hours are as much of a concern to some.”I am looking out for other opportunities and have even requested for a transfer because it is almost impossible to work for 12-13 hours every day, even during weekends,” said a senior official working with Modi since 2014.last_img read more

Ivanka is exception to Trumps Buy American rule

first_imgThis file photo taken on January 11, 2017 shows US President-elect Donald Trump talking to his daughter Ivanka during a press conference at Trump Tower in New York. Photo: AFPIn his January inauguration speech, US president Donald Trump made a seemingly straightforward pledge: “We will follow two simple rules: buy American and hire American.”His daughter is the exception: even as he spoke, at least eight shipments of Ivanka Trump-branded shoes, bags and clothes — more than 53.5 tonnes — were steaming towards American ports from China, according to US Customs bills of lading examined by AFP. Trump uses his presidential pulpit to censure manufacturers — both domestic and foreign — for using overseas labour to make goods for American consumers, but the Ivanka-branded orders have kept rolling in.More than two tonnes of ladies’ polyester woven blouses, 1,600 cowhide leather wallets and 23 tonnes of made-in-China footwear were among at least 82 such shipments that passed US Customs — almost one per business day — from Trump’s November 8 election win through February 26, records showed.The goods were made in China by three US companies holding licences to manufacture products for Ivanka Trump’s fashion line: garment maker G-III, Mondani Handbags and Marc Fisher Footwear.Marc Fisher told AFP it had no comment, while the others did not respond to requests.The first daughter’s business has come under scrutiny since major US department store chain Nordstrom announced in February it would stop carrying her products, citing poor sales.That provoked a scathing attack from Trump and his advisers and even prompted senior counsellor Kellyanne Conway to urge Americans to go out and buy his daughter’s products.The Washington Post reported this week that many had done just that, with February proving a banner month for the brand, in terms of sales. ‘Very hypocritical’ More than 1,200 shipments of Trump-branded products have flowed into the US from China and Hong Kong over the past decade, according to an examination of US import data last year by anti-Trump political action committee Our Principles PAC.During his campaign, Trump defended the licensing of the Trump name for goods made in China — from shoes to ties to dress shirts — as smart business.But at the same time he frequently accused China of stealing US jobs through unfair trade practices and currency manipulation, while also slamming US firms such as Ford and Nabisco for off-shoring.Since taking office, he has kept up the pressure, vowing to punish domestic and foreign companies that manufacture abroad with massive tariffs of as much as 45 percent.His frequent fusillades have led some companies to second-guess decisions to build production facilities overseas.In February, Japanese firm Nisshinbo Holdings, a leading global maker of automobile brake parts, dropped plans to open a factory in Mexico, saying it was due to Trump’s trade policies.But the president has been notably silent on his daughter’s products, which are sold in American retailers like Macy’s, Lord & Taylor and TJ Maxx.G-III alone sold $29.4 million of the goods in 2015, and sales in the first nine months of 2016 were up $13.3 million over the same period the previous year, according to the company’s public filings.But rather than chide his daughter’s partners for making their products abroad, Trump instead lashed out at Nordstrom last month after it announced it would stop carrying Ivanka’s fashion range.”My daughter has been treated so unfairly by @Nordstrom,” he tweeted.Christopher Balding, an expert on Sino-US trade relations at Peking University, called it “very hypocritical to make (bringing jobs back to the US) a policy plank and manufacture her products in China”.But “in their defence… she couldn’t get those products manufactured in the US at a reasonable price point.”However, a long-time garment industry executive who spoke on condition of anonymity told AFP simple products like polyester dresses could “definitely” be made in the US at a similar price once savings from transportation and tariffs are factored in.”The less labour involved in making the garment, the more they can compete with Asian manufacturers.” ‘Tough policies’ Late last month, Ivanka sat in on a White House meeting where her father discussed “tough policies” to bring “our jobs back”.”Everything is going to be based on bringing our jobs back,” the president said, as he addressed a group of manufacturing moguls from a dozen American firms.Following the meeting, a spokesperson for the Ivanka Trump brand told AFP the company has “consistently expressed that we share industry leaders’ interest in bringing more manufacturing opportunities to the US and are looking forward to being a part of the conversation”.Just not yet: two days later, more than 5,000 Ivanka Trump polyester blouses arrived in Newark, New Jersey.And at least one shoe factory in southern China has received an order for 10,000 shoes for next season, according to Chinese newspaper the Global Times.last_img read more

PMO directives flouted buses still run on contract

first_img.Directives of the prime minister office to ensure discipline on Dhaka roads are being flouted. The authorities have made no visible progress in implementing these directives in nearly one month.The PMO, on 16 August, issued a 17-point directive, asking the authorities to take up certain measures, including keeping the doors of running buses closed and allowing passengers to alight and get down from the buses only at the bus stops.Transport sector experts said at least 7 of the directives could have been implemented promptly, but they were not.Moreover, transport workers are defying the decisions of owners’ association not to operate buses on contract basis to curb road accidents. Most of the buses of the capital are still plying on daily contract.PMO’s directives floutedOn Tuesday and Wednesday, gross violation of the directives were evident in at least eight areas of city.One of the directives was to display drivers’ and helpers’ names with pictures, the driving licence and mobile numbers at two prominent places on the bus. This reporter found no such display in at least 25 buses on Tuesday and Wednesday.The directive of keeping the doors of running buses closed and allowing passengers to get on and down from the buses only at the stoppages were also flouted. On Wednesday, the buses were seen stopping at and taking passengers from random places.Motorcyclists’ are also violating the directives. The riders were not wearing helmets as per the instruction. Moreover, this reporter found at least five foot over bridges in a dirty condition.Jaywalkers were also seen crossing the roads risking their lives.Chairman of center for urban studies Nazrul Islam told Prothom Alo, the government lacks the commitment to stop anarchy on the roads. The people also have a tendency to violate the law. Political resolve and commitment from the high-ups of the government is a must to bring discipline in our roads.Contract system is still in placeTransport sector experts said, contract-based driving is one of the main reasons of accidents on the city streets.Under contract system, drivers and conductors have to give the owners fixed amounts at the end of the day or shift, leading to frantic races to get more passengers.In face of countrywide protests by students demanding safe roads, the owners association on 8 August declared that no public transport would run on city roads on contract basis. The association also declared to rescind membership of the company if any owner of their company operates buses on contracts. But the decision is being defied as this reporter talked with drivers and conductors of at least 10 city buses who are still running on contract. Owners association revoked membership of 5 bus companies for running their bus on contract but they are still plying on the road as they still have their registration valid.Khandker Enayet Ullah, secretary general of Bangladesh Road Transport Owners Association, however, said they will stop contract system. It might take a little more time, but they will change the system.BUET’s accident research institutes’ former director Moazzem Hossain said, owners and workers are controlling the transport sector at their will. The government neither has the capacity nor the manpower to implement those directives.Concerted effort from political parties and general people is needed to establish rules in roads, he added.last_img read more

Thousands protest in Spain over gang rape acquittal

first_imgPeople shout slogans during a protest in Pamplona on 28 April 2018 after five men, accused of gang raping a woman at Pamplona`s bull-running festival, were sentenced to nine years in jail for `sexual abuse,` avoiding the more serious charge of rape. The men, aged 27 to 29 who called themselves `the pack`, had been accused of raping the woman, then aged 18, at the entrance to an apartment building in Pamplona on 7 July 2016, at the start of the week-long San Fermin festival, which draws tens of thousands of visitors. AFPTens of thousands of Spaniards took to the streets of Pamplona on Saturday to protest against the acquittal of five men accused of gang raping an 18-year-old woman at the city’s bull-running festival.Demonstrators have filled streets across the country since the court ruling on Thursday, leading Spain’s conservative government to say it will consider changing rape laws.The men were acquitted of sexual assault, which includes rape, and sentenced to nine years for the lesser offence of sexual abuse.In Pamplona itself, police said that “between 32,000 and 35,000 people” took part in a demonstration on Saturday, rallying under the slogan “it’s not sexual abuse, it’s rape”.Thousands of women marched together with their hands raised at the protest, which police said passed off peacefully.Ana Botin, the influential head of Santander, one of Spain’s biggest banks, tweeted that the ruling was “a step back for women’s security” while former judge Manuela Carmena, now Madrid mayor, said it “does not meet women’s demand for justice.”The men, aged 27 to 29, had been accused of raping the woman at the entrance to an apartment building in Pamplona on 7 July, 2016, at the start of the week-long San Fermin festival, which draws tens of thousands of visitors.The five, all from the southern city of Seville, filmed the incident with their smartphones and then bragged about it on a WhatsApp messaging group where they referred to themselves as “La Manada”, or “The Pack” in English.Online petitionA woman gets a Venus symbol drawn on her face during a protest in Pamplona on 28 April 2018 after five men, accused of gang raping a woman at Pamplona`s bull-running festival, were sentenced to nine years in jail for `sexual abuse,` avoiding the more serious charge of rape. AFPAn online petition calling for the disqualification of the judges who passed the sentence gathered more than 1.2 million signatures by Saturday.The issue also hogged the headlines of newspapers all around the country and an order of Carmelite nuns added their voices to the wave of condemnation of the court judgement.Under Spain’s criminal code, evidence of violence or intimidation must exist for the offence of rape to be proved.But that was a legal nuance that was “not always easy to establish,” top-selling daily El Pais wrote in an editorial.It “leads to the painful question of just how much a person needs to fight to avoid being raped without risking getting killed, and still get recognised as a victim of a serious attack against sexual freedom while ensuring that the perpetrators do not enjoy impunity,” the newspaper said.In their ruling, the judges said that “it is indisputable that the plaintiff suddenly found herself in a narrow and hidden place, surrounded by five older, thick-bodied males who left her overwhelmed and unresponsive.”The videos show the plaintiff surrounded and stuck against the wall by two of the accused… she has an absent grimace, and keeps her eyes closed,” they added.’Macho culture’ Already on Thursday, large crowds of mainly women had marched in cities across Spain, including Madrid and Barcelona, following the court sentencing. In the northern city of Santander protesters blocked roads, public television TVE reported.Then on Friday, thousands of people demonstrated outside the Pamplona court where the judgement was made.And a community of 16 Carmelite nuns in the Hondarribia monastery in the Basque country condemned the court ruling on Facebook.”We live cloistered away, wearing a habit that reaches down to our ankles, we don’t go out in the evening, we don’t go to parties, we don’t drink alcohol and we’ve undertaken a vow of chastity,” the nuns said.”And because that’s our free choice, we will defend with all the means at our disposal… the right of all woman to FREELY do the opposite, without them being judged, raped, threatened, killed or humiliated,” they wrote.State prosecutors said they would appeal the ruling.Adriana Lastra, a top official with Spain’s main opposition Socialist party, said the court ruling was “disgraceful”.”It’s the product of a patriarchal and macho culture,” she added.The case was cited in signs carried by many women during massive demonstrations held in cities across Spain to mark International Women’s Day in March, which were among the largest in Europe.last_img

Gang stole money from 5 more ATM booths

first_imgNew evidence of more ATM booth fraudulence is being surfaced following arrest of a gang of six foreign nationals recently, police officials have said.A gang of foreigners has stolen money from five more ATM booths of Dutch-Bangla Bank. The five booths are located in Radisson Hotel, Kakrail, Rampura DIT road and Nikunja area, police officials said. Scrutinising the footage of closed circuit television (CCTV), police suspects that 10-12 Ukrainian citizens are involved with the gang.The bank authorities have informed the investigating officers that Tk 1250,000 has been stolen from those booths.Analyzing CCTV footage the investigators have found that two groups of fraud were involved in stealing money from ATM booths, Detective Branch (DB) additional deputy commissioner of of Khilgaon zone Shahidur Rahman told Prothom Alo. They are working with technology specialists in investigating the case as technology was the main instrument of fraudulence, he added. Shahidur said, more information would be revealed once six arrested Ukraine nationals are put on remand for their alleged connection with the forgery.On 31 May, money was stolen from a booth of Madhya Badda. Other booths were stolen on 1 June. Tk 1.6 million were stolen from those booths.Investigating officers maintained that the gang stole money from ATM booths of at least 3 other private banks. But those 3 banks kept mum about the matter. They did not also inform Bangladesh Bank anything about the fraudulence. Detective branch of Dhaka Metropolitan Police, Counter Terrorism and Transnational Unit’s (CTTC) cyber crime unit and Criminal Investigation Department (CID) are jointly investigating the matter. On 1 June, 2 Ukrainian citizens went to steal money from a booth at Taltola area of Khilgaon. One of them was detained while another one managed to flee. Police at that night detained five more Ukraine citizens from Olio Dream Heaven Hotel in Panthapath. One member of this gang is still at large. Seven members of the gang landed in Dhaka by a Turkish Airlines plane on 30 May. On the following day, they had stolen Tk 400,000 from two booths of Madhya (middle) Badda. They were scheduled to left for India on 6 June. The investigators have requested the special branch of police to give information about the Ukrainian citizens who entered and left Bangladesh between15 and 30 May. A DB official seeking anonymity has said that a Bangladeshi technology expert living abroad has told them that this type of stealing from ATM booths has happened abroad. Cyber criminals take control of ATM booth by using a malware named ‘Tyupkin’. Members of the gang themselves control central server of the bank which gives directive while withdrawing the money. CID’s special superintendent (Organized Crime) Mollah Nazrul Islam said the criminals are member of an international gang named ‘Hidden Cobra’. They are linked with another gang named ‘Lazarus’, who were involved in Bangladesh Bank cyber heist in 2016. Nazrul said they got information from an international intelligence group that country’s ATM booths are vulnerable to frauds. They informed the bank authorities about it. Bangladesh Bank will arrange a meeting with all the banks about this incident, said central bank’s spokesperson Sirajul Islam. He said only DBBL has informed them of stealing money from their booths. DBBL’s managing director Abul Kashem Md Shirin could not be reached over phone for comment on the issue.*This report, originally published in Prothom Alo print edition, has been rewritten in English by Galib Ashraflast_img read more

Kader Siddiqui quits Oikya Front

first_imgQuader Siddiqui speaks at a press briefing at Jatiya Press Club on Monday. Photo: Prothom Alo. Kader Siddiqui-led Krishak Sramik Janata League (KSJL) on Monday quit Kamal Hossain-led Jatiya Oikya Front ‘as the alliance has become inactive after the 11th parliamentary election’, reports UNB.Kader came up with the announcement at a press conference at the National Press Club.”There is no visible existence of Jatiya Oikya Front after the national election. It has also failed to focus on any national problem,” he said.Kader Siddiqui said also that their party will now start a new journey and stand beside people.KSJL formally joined Jatiya Oikya Front on 5 November, 2018 aiming to ensure an acceptable national election in the country.last_img

Court dismisses Minnis 2 petitions

first_imgAysha Siddika MinniA Barguna court on Monday dismissed two petitions filed by lawyers of Aysha Siddika Minni seeking her production before it to take her signature in two appeals for withdrawal of her confessional statement and ensuring her proper treatment over the killing of her husband Rifat Sharif, reports UNB.Senior judicial magistrate Sirajul Alam Gazi passed the order, asking the counsels to file the petitions through the jail authorities.The judge also directed the jail authorities to provide treatment to Minni in jail.Minni’s counsel Barguna Bar Association general secretary lawyer Mahbubul Bari said they need Minni’s signature to file appeals seeking withdrawal of her confessional statement and for her proper treatment. “So we appealed to the court seeking its order to produce her before it,” he said, adding that the court turned down the petitions.He also said they will file the appeals with the jail authorities on Tuesday.On Sunday, the court rejected the bail application of Minni in the murder case.Aysha Siddika Minni who was arrested on 16 July night after nearly 12 hours of interrogation reportedly confessed to her involvement in the murder before the court on 19 July.After meeting Minni in jail on 20 July, her father Mozammel Hossain alleged that she was forced to confess the crime and a vested group was trying to divert the direction.Rifat Sharif, 22, was attacked with sharp weapons near the main gate of Barguna Government College on 26 June. His wife Minni appeared to be trying to protect him during the attack that was caught on surveillance camera.Police have so far arrested 16 people over the murder. Besides, main accused Sabbir Ahmed alias Nayon Bond was killed in a reported gunfight with law enforcers on 2 July.last_img read more

Alberto Downgraded To Depression Falling Tree Kills Two Journalists Reporting On Storm

first_img Share Twitter via @SpannForecasters have downgraded Alberto to a subtropical depression but say a flood threat persists as the huge system continues to dump heavy rains.The National Hurricane Center in Miami says Alberto, formerly a subtropical storm, weakened Monday evening just hours after making landfall in the Florida Panhandle. As of the 11 p.m. EDT advisory, Alberto was located about 50 miles (80 kilometers) west-northwest of Dothan, Alabama. Its top sustained winds are now down to about 35 mph (55 kph).Forecasters say the center of the depression is moving to the north near 12 mph (19 kph). The storm is expected to pick up speed in coming hours and move over Alabama later in the night and early Tuesday as it spreads storms around the South.Forecasters say rains from the far-flung system could produce flash flooding in the hours ahead.Authorities so far haven’t attributed any deaths or injuries directly to Subtropical Storm Alberto. But in North Carolina, a television news anchor and a photojournalist have died when a tree fell on their vehicle as they reported on severe weather on the fringes of the huge system.The North Carolina Highway Patrol says a large tree toppled Monday on the TV news vehicle near Tryon, North Carolina. Station WYFF-TV of Greenville, South Carolina, says one of its news anchors, Mike McCormick, and photojournalist, Aaron Smeltzer, were killed.McCormick and Smeltzer had just interviewed Tryon Fire Chief Geoffrey Tennant as they reported on fringe storms in North Carolina, hundreds of miles (kilometers) from the center of Alberto. Tennant says minutes later he got a call “and it was them.”Tennant didn’t directly blame Alberto for the deaths, noting the tree became loose in ground already saturated by a week rain.last_img read more