Tag Archives: Nevada

Crews battle to cease hearth bearing down on Lake Tahoe


SOUTH LAKE TAHOE, Calif. — A Northern California hearth that gutted a whole bunch of houses superior towards Lake Tahoe on Wednesday as hundreds of firefighters tried to field within the flames, and a thick yellow haze of the nation’s worst air enveloped vacationers.

In Southern California, no less than a dozen houses and outbuildings had been broken or destroyed after a fireplace broke out Wednesday afternoon and shortly ran by means of tinder-dry brush in mountains northeast of Los Angeles. Evacuations had been ordered for about 1,000 individuals.

Crews mounted an air assault to maintain the South Fireplace from the tiny communities of Lytle Creek and Scotland close to the Cajon Cross in San Bernardino County. By dusk, the fireplace gave the impression to be principally contained.

To the north, a brand new hearth erupted within the Sierra Nevada foothills and shortly burned no less than 1,000 acres of land close to New Melones Lake in Calaveras County, prompting evacuations.

In the meantime, the Caldor Fireplace unfold to inside 20 miles (32 kilometers) southwest of Lake Tahoe, consuming its means by means of rugged timberlands and “knocking on the door” of the basin that straddles the California-Nevada state line, California’s state hearth chief Thom Porter warned this week.

Ash rained down and vacationers ducked into cafes, out of doors gear retailers and casinos on Lake Tahoe Boulevard for a respite from the unhealthy air.

South Lake Tahoe and Tahoe Metropolis on the west shore had the nation’s worst air air pollution at midmorning Wednesday, reaching 334, within the “hazardous” class of the 0-500 Air High quality Index, in line with AirNow, a partnership of federal, state and native air businesses.

South of Tahoe, Rick Nelson and his spouse, Diane, had deliberate to host a weekend marriage ceremony at Fallen Leaf Lake, the place his daughter and her fiance had met. Nonetheless, the smoke induced a lot of the group to go away. The solar was an eerie blood orange, and the floats and boats within the lake had been obscured by haze Tuesday.

Ultimately, the Nelsons spent two days arranging to have the marriage moved from the glacial lake a number of hours southwest to the San Francisco Bay Space.

“Everyone’s making an attempt to make lodging for the smoke. And I feel it’s changing into a actuality for us, sadly,” Diane Nelson stated. “I simply suppose that the smoke and the fires have gotten larger, hotter and faster-moving.”

Local weather change has made the West hotter and drier up to now 30 years and can proceed to make the climate extra excessive and wildfires extra damaging, in line with scientists.

Though there have been no evacuations ordered for Lake Tahoe, it was unimaginable to disregard a blanket of haze so thick and huge that it closed colleges for 2 days in Reno, Nevada, which is about 60 miles (100 kilometers) from the fireplace.

The college district that features Reno reopened most colleges on Wednesday, citing improved air high quality circumstances. Nonetheless, the Washoe County Faculty District’s colleges in Incline Village on the north shore of Lake Tahoe remained closed, the district stated in an announcement.

The Caldor hearth has scorched greater than 197 sq. miles (510 sq. kilometers) and destroyed no less than 461 houses since Aug. 14 within the Sierra Nevada southwest of the lake. It was 11% contained and threatened greater than 17,000 buildings.

The western facet of the blaze continued to threaten greater than a dozen small communities and wineries. On the fireplace’s jap facet, crews bulldozed hearth strains, opened up slim logging roads and cleared ridgetops in hopes of stopping its advance, hearth officers stated.

Greater than 2,500 firefighters had been on the road and extra assets had been streaming in, together with large firefighting plane, hearth officers stated.

In the meantime, California’s Dixie Fireplace, the second-largest in state historical past at 1,148 sq. miles (2,973 sq. kilometers), was burning solely about 65 miles (104 kilometers) to the north. New evacuations had been ordered after winds pushed the blaze to the northeast on Wednesday, as flames crossed State Route 44 and headed towards campgrounds close to Eagle Lake.

The Dixie Fireplace, which broke out July 13, was 43% contained. At the least 682 houses had been amongst greater than 1,270 buildings which have been destroyed.

Within the southern Sierra Nevada, there was rising concern after the French Fireplace expanded close to Lake Isabella, a preferred fishing and boating vacation spot.

“The fireplace actually made an enormous push and put up an enormous column of smoke,” hearth spokesman Alex Olow stated Wednesday. As a result of flames had been nonetheless energetic, evaluation groups have been unable to get into neighborhoods to see if any houses had been broken, he stated.

About 10 communities had been beneath evacuation orders. The fireplace has blackened 32 sq. miles (83 sq. kilometers) since Aug. 18.

Nationally, 92 giant fires had been burning in a dozen primarily Western states, in line with the Nationwide Interagency Fireplace Heart in Boise, Idaho.

Northern California has skilled a sequence of disastrous blazes which have burned a whole bunch of houses, and lots of stay uncontained.

On Tuesday, President Joe Biden declared {that a} main catastrophe exists in California and ordered federal assist made out there to native governments, businesses and hearth victims in 4 northern counties ravaged by blazes courting again to July 14.


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Grasshoppers on the go make migratory cease in Las Vegas space


A migration of mild-mannered grasshoppers sweeping via the Las Vegas space is being attributed to moist climate a number of months in the past.

Nevada state entomologist Jeff Knight advised reporters on Thursday the variety of grownup pallid-winged grasshoppers touring north to central Nevada is uncommon however not unprecedented they usually pose no hazard.

Knight says the bugs do not carry illness, do not chunk, and possibly will not injury anyone’s yard earlier than they’re gone in a number of weeks.

He says they’re normally interested in ultraviolet mild sources.

Knight recollects a number of comparable migrations in his greater than 30 years on the state Division of Agriculture, together with one about six or seven years in the past.

This yr, the Las Vegas space recorded extra rain in six months than the annual common of just below 4.2 inches (10.7 centimeters) per yr.


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25 years after murders, OJ says ‘Life is fine’


After 25 years living under the shadow of one of the nation’s most notorious murder cases, O.J. Simpson says his life has entered a phase he calls the “no negative zone.”

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In a telephone interview, the 71-year-old Simpson told The Associated Press he is healthy and happy living in Las Vegas. And neither he nor his children want to look back by talking about June 12, 1994 , when his ex-wife Nicole Brown Simpson and her friend Ronald Goldman were stabbed to death and Simpson was transformed from Hall of Fame football hero to murder suspect.

“We don’t need to go back and relive the worst day of our lives,” he said. “The subject of the moment is the subject I will never revisit again. My family and I have moved on to what we call the ‘no negative zone.’ We focus on the positives.”

But the pain has not faded for Goldman’s family.

“Closure,” said Goldman’s sister Kim, “isn’t a word that resonates with me. I don’t think it’s applicable when it comes to tragedy and trauma and loss of life.”

“I don’t suffocate in my grief,” she said. “But every milestone that my kid hits, every milestone that I hit, you know, those are just reminders of what I’m not able to share with my brother and what he is missing out on.”

Ron Goldman, then 25, was returning a pair of sunglasses that Nicole Brown Simpson’s mother had left at a restaurant where he worked when he and Simpson’s ex-wife were stabbed and slashed dozens of times.

O.J. Simpson’s televised “Trial of the Century” lasted nearly a year and became a national obsession, fraught with issues of racism, police misconduct, celebrity and domestic violence.

Represented by a legal “Dream Team” that included Johnnie Cochran Jr. and F. Lee Bailey, he was acquitted by a jury in 1995 in a verdict that seemed to split the country along racial lines, with many white Americans believing he got away with murder and many black people considering him innocent.

He has continued to declare his innocence. The murder case is officially listed as unsolved.

The victims’ families subsequently filed a civil suit against him, and in 1997 he was ordered to pay $33.5 million for the wrongful deaths of his ex-wife and Goldman. Some of his property was seized and auctioned, but most of the judgment has not been paid.

For a man who once lived for the spotlight , Simpson has generally kept a low profile since his release from prison in October 2017 after serving nine years for a robbery and kidnapping conviction in Las Vegas. He insisted his conviction and sentence for trying to steal back his own memorabilia were unfair but said: “I believe in the legal system and I honored it. I served my time.”

After his release from prison in Nevada, many expected him to return to Florida, where he had lived for several years. But friends in Las Vegas persuaded him to stay there.

“The town has been good to me,” Simpson said. “Everybody I meet seems to be apologizing for what happened to me here.”

His time in the city hasn’t been without controversy. A month after his release, an outing to a steakhouse and lounge off the Las Vegas Strip ended in a dispute. Simpson was ordered off the property and barred from returning.

No such problems have occurred since, and Simpson is among the most sought-after figures in town for selfies with those who encounter him at restaurants or athletic events he attends occasionally.

He plays golf nearly every day. The knees that helped him run to football glory at the University of Southern California and with the NFL’s Buffalo Bills have been replaced, and he recently had Lasik surgery on his eyes.

Simpson said he remains close to his children and other relatives. His parole officer has given him permission to take short trips, including to Florida, where his two younger children, Justin and Sydney, have built careers in real estate.

His older daughter, Arnelle, lives with him much of the time but also commutes to Los Angeles.

“I’ve been to Florida two or three times to see the kids and my old buddies in Miami. I even managed to play a game of golf with them,” he said. “But I live in a town I’ve learned to love. Life is fine.”

He also visited relatives in Louisiana, he said, and spoke to a group of black judges and prosecutors in New Orleans.

The glamor of his early life is just a memory.

After his football career, Simpson became a commercial pitchman, actor and football commentator. Once a multimillionaire, he says most of his fortune was spent defending himself from the murder charges.

Simpson declined to discuss his finances other than to say he lives on pensions.

To coincide with Wednesday’s anniversary, Kim Goldman will launch a 10-week podcast, “Confronting: O.J. Simpson,” in which she will interview her brother’s friends, the detective who investigated the killings, attorneys for the defense and prosecution, and two of the 12 jurors who acquitted Simpson. She will continue to make the case that Simpson was guilty.


Linda Deutsch is a retired special correspondent for The Associated Press. She covered all of Simpson’s legal cases during her 48-year career as a Los Angeles-based trial reporter.


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South Carolina: Moving plutonium belies Nevada claim of risk


Nevada’s demand for the U.S. government to remove weapons-grade plutonium that was secretly trucked to a site north of Las Vegas last year contradicts its claim that moving radioactive material is dangerous, according to lawyers for South Carolina, where the shipment originated.

South Carolina and the U.S. Energy Department filed their first responses this week to Nevada’s legal challenge in the 9th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals. Nevada appealed after a federal judge in Reno refused to temporarily ban any more shipments to the state and added a request to remove the plutonium already there.

The Trump administration has promised no more plutonium will be transported to Nevada from the Savannah River Site in South Carolina or any other nuclear facility. But government attorneys say the courts have no legal power to undo the shipment that’s already been made.

South Carolina says moving the plutonium from the Nevada National Security Site would “repeat the risks of effects that Nevada claimed in district court would cause it irreparable harm.”

“The public’s interest does not favor unnecessary shipments of defense plutonium over the nation’s highways,” South Carolina Attorney General Alan Wilson wrote in a brief filed Monday.

He argued that the plutonium is stored safely at the Nevada National Security Site and should stay there until the federal government is ready to move it to its final home in New Mexico.

The filing did not reference a March 13 warning from an independent government advisory board about “significant” earthquake dangers at the site’s facility where officials say the plutonium is stored 60 miles (97 kilometers) from Las Vegas.

“A seismically induced high explosive violent reaction could result in unmitigated dose consequences” to the public, the Defense Nuclear Facilities Board told Energy Secretary Rick Perry in a letter last month.

The board said the facility is operating with “unknown risk,” which a 2007 hazards study revealed.

The shipment of one-half metric ton (1,102 pounds) of plutonium — which was kept secret until January — was part of the government’s effort to comply with an earlier court order to remove at least a metric ton (2,204 pounds) of the material from the Savannah River Site by Jan. 1, 2020.

The Energy Department unsuccessfully appealed the December 2016 order, arguing that removing the plutonium by the deadline was “simply impossible” if it also complied with environmental laws.

Nevada’s lawyers said that months later, “the impossible happened” and the Department of Energy completed an analysis declaring the Nevada site a prime candidate for indefinitely housing the material.

“DOE’s previous capacity, safety, security and surveillance concerns magically disappeared,” Nevada said in its appeal.

The government’s new filing says Nevada took those comments out of context.

It says references to potential radiation exposure and difficulty meeting the 2020 deadline were tied to an initial plan to dilute the plutonium into waste — a process known as “down blending” — for disposal.

“The weapons-useable plutonium at issue here is not being ‘down blended’ or turned into waste. … The plutonium here is being repurposed for weapons production,” government lawyers wrote.

Nevada’s concerns that the shipping containers may experience corrosion and are unsafe for storage come from an earlier federal declaration, which discussed handling plutonium in a different form. The government disclosed in its filing that the plutonium shipped to Nevada was in solid metal form and lacks the same concerns.

State Attorney General Aaron Ford criticized federal officials for releasing key information “only when it is convenient and beneficial for them to do so.”

“The Department of Energy’s recent disclosure demonstrates why Nevada’s lawsuit was necessary,” Ford said in a statement. “Unfortunately, Nevada only learns this critical information through litigation.”

Democratic Gov. Steve Sisolak vowed to “do what it takes to get this unwanted weapons-grade plutonium out of” Nevada.

U.S. Judge Miranda Du in Reno denied a motion seeking to block any shipments pending the appeal. She said the matter was moot because the plutonium already had been shipped.


Associated Press writer Ken Ritter in Las Vegas contributed to this report.


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[youtube https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jV51BGIzkwU&w=580&h=385]

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