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At least 1 killed, 3 injured after mysterious explosion rocks medical building

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By KT

iStock/Thinkstock(LOS ANGELES) — At least one person is dead and three more were injured after a mysterious explosion rocked a Southern California building Tuesday.

Officials are unclear what led to the explosion, but are not ruling anything out. Bomb technicians are inside the medical building in Aliso Viejo, which was undergoing a renovation, to determine the cause, officials said.

There’s no “initial indication” of terrorism right now, Mike Gifford, spokesperson for FBI in Los Angeles, said. However, authorities will continue to investigate possible terrorism out of caution.

The powerful blast blew out nearly the entire bottom floor, officials said. There were early reports that a car had crashed into the building, but that turned out not to be the case.

Children at a day care across the street from the building were evacuated. No children were hurt, officials said.

Authorities said they are not actively seeking a suspect.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Source:: National News

      

More than 1 million students to miss school as teacher revolt sweeping nation heads to new state

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By KT

iStock/Thinkstock(CHARLOTTE, N.C.) — A wave of teacher revolts sweeping the nation is set to hit North Carolina on Wednesday as thousands of educators are expected to swarm the state’s capital in a quest for higher pay and more money for education.

The scheduled one-day walkout has prompted school districts across the state to cancel classes for Wednesday, leaving more than 1 million students with an unexpected day off.

The labor action is the latest in a string of teacher uprisings across the country this year that have prompted strikes in West Virginia, Oklahoma, and Arizona. Educators in Kentucky and Colorado have also taken action, staging walkouts and sick-outs in hopes of pressuring lawmakers to stop a decade of cuts in education funding the teachers say have hurt students.

In Puerto Rico, thousands of teachers walked out of classes in March to protest the cash-strapped government’s plan to shut down more than 300 schools this year as the unincorporated U.S. territory struggles to recover from the devastation of Hurricane Maria in September.

Mark Jewell, president of the North Carolina Association of Educators, said up to 15,000 teachers are expected to march and rally at the state Capitol in Raleigh on Wednesday morning.

The teachers will be marching “to let our General Assembly know and our elected policymakers that this is really about accountability,” he said.

The North Carolina educators say their top goal is to get legislators to increase annual per-pupil funding, which is currently about $9,329, according to a 2018 report by the National Education Association.

“We are currently about $2,400 below the national average in how we fund our public school children,” Jewell said at a news conference in Raleigh on Monday.

North Carolina teachers are calling for higher pay. The average salary for teachers in the state is $49,970, or about $9,000 below the national average, Jewell said.

The educators also want their lawmakers to fork over money to fix crumbling schools and fund 500 school counselors, social workers and psychologists.

“We have not had a textbook adoption in 15 years. We have school districts deciding whether or not to pay the light bill or buy toilet paper,” Jewell said. “We have classrooms … that are 35 students and higher in some instances. This is not normal. This is not the North Carolina way.”

North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper, a Democrat, has proposed boosting teacher pay 8 percent and up to 14.8 percent for educators with at least 25 years of experience. The state’s Republican-dominated General Assembly is calling for raises in the average of 5 to 6 percent.

“North Carolina should treat educators like the professionals they are,” Cooper told reporters last week. “They shouldn’t have to take to the streets to get the respect they deserve.”

The rally will also kick off a six-month push to elect leaders in November who will support education funding, Jewell said.

“Our end game, obviously, is Nov. 6 when we elect pro-public education policymakers to the General Assembly,” Jewell said.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Source:: National News

      

11-year-old girl killed by falling tree as severe thunderstorms batter Northeast

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By Brittany Martinez

ABC News (NEW YORK) — Two people are dead and nearly half a million customers in the Northeast are without power due to severe weather that includes thunderstorms, flash flooding, hail, winds up to 80 mph and possibly tornadoes.

An 11-year-old girl was killed in Newburgh, New York, by a falling tree, while her mother suffered minor injuries. In Danbury, Connecticut, one person died after a tree fell on his truck.

As of 8 p.m. ET, 496,777 customers in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey and Connecticut had lost electricity.

The National Weather Service had received more than 100 severe storm reports shortly after 6 p.m., including reports of baseball-size hail and wind gusts up to 80 mph.

Although the storm is moving quickly east, severe thunderstorm watches remain in effect from Washington, D.C. to Philadelphia and New York City to Boston. New flash flood watches have also been issued for the Washington, D.C., and Baltimore areas.

Service on one of the busiest train lines in the Northeast has been suspended due to the weather.

All of the Metro North lines have been suspended due to downed trees, leading to a frenzy at Grand Central Station in New York City during rush hour on Tuesday. Thousands of people were stranded at the station, ABC New York station WABC reported.

Amtrak service in the Northeast has also been canceled due to the storm, according to WABC-TV.

Conditions were so bad in Newburgh that the city decided to close all roads due to the damage to trees and electrical infrastructure. Brookfield, Connecticut, declared a “town disaster” in response to the weather, urging people to remain indoors until officials can assess the damage.

A tornado watch was issued this afternoon for upstate New York, the Hudson Valley, northeast Pennsylvania, western Connecticut, Massachusetts and southern Vermont. Winds up to 80 mph and large hail are also threats in those areas.

The severe threat will likely pass by about 9 p.m.

The Southeast is also expected to see heavy rain over the next several days. Flash flooding is possible throughout the week.

Copyright © 2018, ABC Radio. All rights reserved.

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Source:: National News

      

Two Departments Fight Barn Fire East of La Grange

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By Record11

A two-alarm fire burned a barn, an RV and several smaller sheds on Ellinger Road at the east end of La Grange Tuesday afternoon, May 15.

No one was injured. La Grange Volunteer Fire Department got the call around 4:30 p.m. Soon after they arrived, La Grange Fire Chief Frank Menefee called for assistance from Ellinger Volunteer Fire Department. The fire threatened a two residences located a few feet away on either side of the barn. Firefighters were able to control the flames before either home ignited.

Look for more on this story in Friday’s paper.

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Source:: Fayette County Record

      

Hallettsville school district recognizes police department for school safety

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By By Amber Aldaco | aaldaco@vicad.com

HALLETTSVILLE — The teachers, staff, students and parents of the Hallettsville school district have felt safer since off-duty Hallettsville Police Department officers have had a presence on campus this year. …read more

Source:: Lavaca County – Victoria Advocate

      

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