Tag Archives: Arizona

Backup driver in deadly Arizona Uber autonomous crash charged

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Prosecutors have filed a legal cost towards the backup driver of an autonomous Uber car that fatally struck a pedestrian in suburban Phoenix

PHOENIX — The backup Uber driver concerned within the first self-driving car fatality has been charged with negligent murder for being distracted within the moments earlier than fatally placing a girl in suburban Phoenix.

Maricopa County Legal professional Allister Adel’s workplace mentioned on Tuesday that Rafaela Vasquez was charged on Aug. 27 within the 2018 crash in Tempe that killed 49-year-old Elaine Herzberg. She pleaded not responsible throughout a listening to on Tuesday. Her lawyer didn’t instantly reply to an inquiry from The Related Press.

Prosecutors declined in March 2019 to file legal costs towards Uber, as a company, in Herzberg’s demise.

Vasquez, 46, advised investigators that she didn’t use her cell telephones earlier than the crash.

However the Nationwide Transportation Security Board concluded Vasquez’s failure to observe the highway as she watched the tv present “The Voice” on her telephone was the principle reason behind the crash.

The contributing components cited by the board included Uber’s insufficient security procedures and ineffective oversight of its drivers, Herzberg’s resolution to cross the road outdoors of a crosswalk, and the Arizona Division of Transportation’s inadequate oversight of autonomous car testing.

The board additionally concluded Uber’s de-activation of its automated emergency braking system elevated the dangers related to testing automated autos on public roads. As an alternative of the system, Uber relied on the human backup driver to intervene.

The Uber system detected Herzberg 5.6 seconds earlier than the crash. Nevertheless it however failed to find out whether or not she was a bicyclist, pedestrian or unknown object, or that she was headed into the car’s path, the board mentioned.

The demise reverberated all through the auto business and Silicon Valley and compelled different corporations to sluggish what had been a quick march towards autonomous ride-hailing companies on public roads.

Uber pulled its self-driving vehicles out of Arizona the day earlier than the NTSB issued a preliminary report on the crash, eliminating the roles of about 300 individuals who served as backup drivers and carried out different jobs linked to the autos.

Gov. Doug Ducey prohibited Uber from persevering with its exams of self-driving vehicles after Herzberg was run over.

A toxicology report confirmed that Herzberg examined constructive for methamphetamine.

Vasquez had beforehand spent greater than 4 years in jail for 2 felony convictions — making false statements when acquiring unemployment advantages and tried armed theft — earlier than beginning work as an Uber driver, in keeping with court docket data.

Vasquez’s first identify was listed on a driver’s license as Rafael, however police say Vasquez identifies as a girl and goes by the primary identify of Rafaela.

The choice to not criminally cost Uber in Herzberg’s demise was made by Yavapai County Legal professional Sheila Polk, whose officer dealt with the case after the prosecutor’s workplace in metro Phoenix cited a possible battle of curiosity for having beforehand participated in a public-safety marketing campaign with Uber.

The case was returned to prosecutors in metro Phoenix after the choice to not cost Uber had eradicated the battle of curiosity.

A trial for Vasquez is scheduled for Feb. 11, 2021.

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This story has been corrected to indicate Vasquez’s age is 46.

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Krisher reported from Detroit.

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SIUE Club Hockey Collects Teddy Bears for SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital

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SIUE Club Hockey Collects Teddy Bears for SSM Cardinal Glennon Children’s Hospital | RiverBender.com


























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The Mile-high Reuben from @chompies — by @letthemeatthis by @bestfoodphoenix …

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The Mile-high Reuben from @chompies

📷 by @letthemeatthis
📝 by @bestfoodphoenix
📍 at @chompies

👉 @bestfoodphoenix & @bestfoodfeed
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Condor chick makes 1st flight try from Utah cliff

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In one other signal that California condors are making a comeback within the wild three a long time after nearing the brink of extinction, a condor chick left its nest and made its first try at flight in Utah’s Zion Nationwide Park.

Guests final week noticed the park’s first profitable hatchling stretch its wings and stumble out of its nesting cave on a sweeping red-rock cliff in a sighting that was confirmed later by park biologists.

Tim Hauck, who manages the condor reintroduction program for The Peregrine Fund group, described the 4½-month- condor’s flight try as a “managed fall.”

“The chick soared downward from the nest and landed on a decrease cliff ledge,” Hauck stated. “We anticipate it to remain there for some time with its mother and father.”

The surviving California condor inhabitants now stands at greater than 500, with greater than half of the birds with wingspans of as much as 10 toes (three meters) residing within the wild in an space together with Arizona, California, Utah and northern Mexico. Different condors have been captured for breeding functions or are held in zoos.

A minimum of two extra chicks have been born on the Utah park, however died earlier than they have been sufficiently old to fly.

Park rangers have nicknamed the surviving chick “1K” as a result of it was the one thousandth condor hatched as a part of the prolonged effort to spice up the inhabitants.

“We have been trying ahead to this all summer season, and we’re excited to see the chick proceed to learn to fly,” stated Eugene Moissa, a park spokesman.

The brand new chick’s mother and father are the one recognized condor breeding pair within the park and are estimated to have been collectively two years. The feminine was born in 2006 on the San Diego Zoo and the male hatched in 2009 in Boise, Idaho, earlier than being launched into the wild.

They have been bred as a part of a program began within the 1980s after the variety of California condors on the earth dwindled to 22. The wild condors have been captured and held in captivity to maintain them secure and launch the breeding program involving authorities businesses, personal organizations, residents and biologists.

California condors raised in captivity have been first launched in 1996 at Vermilion Cliffs Nationwide Monument in northern Arizona close to Utah. There are actually greater than 88 flying within the two states.

The condors sometimes lay eggs on cave flooring or in giant crevices. Dad and mom often mate for all times, reproduce each two years at most and share incubation duties. Younger condors sometimes make their first flights after six months however might keep within the nesting space for as much as a 12 months as their mother and father feed them and train them methods to seek for the useless animal carcasses that they eat.

Hauck stated the hatchling’s flight try is a testomony to the condor’s resilience and self-sustaining nature.

“It is a actually particular milestone for the re-population program” Hauck stated. “It is a reminder for us to take time to rejoice the little victories, however we nonetheless have quite a lot of work to do.”

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How To Win New Jersey Immediate Match Choose Three lotto and Choose Four lotto Profitable Numbers



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Rising program places air high quality specialists on wildfires

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Among the many tons of of firefighters, plane and engines dispatched to struggle a latest wildfire in northern Arizona had been two girls whose focus wasn’t on flames. Their concern was smoke.

Due to the well being hazards from wildfires spewing smoke into the ambiance, Congress earlier this yr mentioned all top-tier federal groups battling wildland blazes ought to have no less than one specialist assigned to observe smoke.

The smoke itself will be extra problematic than the flames that produce it. Smoke that poured into Seeley Lake, Montana, from a close-by wildfire in 2017 received so unhealthy that well being officers warned residents to go away or discover elsewhere to sleep at night time when smoke is at its worst.

Different locations have opened respite facilities or arrange air filtration programs in buildings to provide folks a spot to go when it is too smoky. Fireplace crews time prescribed burns in order that smoke disperses throughout the day or they ignite bigger sections so smoke is not lingering for days.

The demand from companies managing the wildfires is so nice that not each request for air useful resource advisers will be stuffed.

“There is a rising consciousness of those positions and the significance of conveying that data,” mentioned Pete Lahm, an air useful resource specialist with the U.S. Forest Service who trains and dispatches the advisers. “I do not assume that significance was the focus or the information was the identical three or 4 years in the past. It is grown leaps and bounds.”

The advisers come from numerous companies. Carolyn Kelly, a smoke administration discipline coordinator for the Washington Division of Pure Sources, and Anita Thompson, a trainee from the Apache-Sitgreaves Nationwide Forest in japanese Arizona, spent a couple of days in Flagstaff on a wildfire that burned greater than three sq. miles (eight sq. kilometers).

The 2 checked out smoke fashions, climate patterns, hearth conduct, humidity and particulates to gauge the air high quality. They checked everlasting screens and arrange others round city the place smoke can be anticipated to funnel by way of drainages or settle in low-lying areas.

The info is transmitted by way of satellite tv for pc, permitting them to verify the readings on their telephones or computer systems. Every morning, they produced a color-coded smoke forecast that coated three days and was despatched out to the general public.

“The extra data we are able to get out, the higher selections that individuals could make to keep away from the smoke, to get work achieved when the smoke is at least impactful portion of the day,” Kelly mentioned.

Lahm has about 95 air useful resource advisers he can ship out throughout the nation for 2 weeks at a time on fires. He is coaching about two dozen others to assist fill the demand. Many of the requests come from states within the U.S. West, with California and Oregon topping the listing, and grew from 55 in 2016 to 105 in 2017 and 110 final yr.

Patricia Grantham, supervisor on the Klamath Nationwide Forest in northern California and Oregon, mentioned the communities there have come to count on a smoke forecast.

“They’re very a lot in tune,” she mentioned. “I work with very hearth savvy communities; they’ve been by way of it lots.”

When Lahm is brief on advisers, he tries extending assignments by per week or utilizing one adviser for a number of fires in the identical space. Nonetheless, he says he often can not fill all of the requests when wildfires are raging throughout the nation. The associated fee for the specialists falls to no matter company is managing the hearth.

Whereas Kelly and Thompson by no means discovered the smoke to be detrimental to anybody’s well being in Flagstaff, residents discovered it bothersome. Microscopic particles within the smoke can set off respiration issues, complications, chest ache and coronary heart assaults. Kids, the aged and folks with lung illness or coronary heart hassle are most in danger .

Kim Meehl mentioned her house east of Flagstaff reeked of smoke but it surely was extra tolerable than some fires the U.S. Forest Service purposefully units.

Linda Romero and her husband had been amongst these on alert to evacuate because the wildfire in a mountain go was burning most intensely. Her resolution for coping with the smoke: “Be wise and take precautions, keep inside.”

Coconino County in northern Arizona is planning to purchase a dumpster-like container that incinerates tree trunks and branches left from tasks to skinny dense stands as a substitute of burning them in piles to chop down on smoke.

However the actuality resides within the forest comes with the chance of fireplace and smoke.

“We attempt to inform that story however I additionally empathize with individuals who transfer to this space for clear air and expertise well being issues due to a few of the smoke generated by way of fires,” mentioned Coconino Nationwide Forest Supervisor Laura Jo West. “It is laborious figuring out that.”

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Former Raiders extensive receiver Cliff Department useless at age 71

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Cliff Department, one of many Raiders’ career-leading extensive receivers who gained three Tremendous Bowls in 14 seasons with the franchise, has died. He was 71.

Department was discovered useless Saturday in a resort room in Bullhead Metropolis, Arizona, the town’s police division stated. It stated an preliminary investigation revealed no foul play and that Department died of pure causes.

“Cliff Department touched the lives of generations of Raiders followers,” the Raiders stated in a press release on their web site. “His loss leaves an everlasting void for the Raiders Household, however his kindness and loving nature will likely be fondly remembered perpetually.”

One of many recreation’s high deep threats from 1972 to 1985 in Oakland and Los Angeles, Department was an All-Professional three straight seasons (1974-76) and made 4 Professional Bowls. He scored 67 touchdowns via the air, main the NFL in TD receptions in 1974 with 13 and in 1076 with 12. Department additionally had a league-high 1,092 yards receiving in 1974.

He was a power within the postseason, with 1,289 yards receiving. The Raiders gained Tremendous Bowls after the 1976, 1980 and 1983 seasons — the final one in Los Angeles, the place the franchise moved in 1982 after protracted courtroom fights earlier than returning to the Bay Space in 1995.

In 1983, Department tied the NFL report with a 99-yard landing catch in a regular-season recreation. He stands third amongst Raiders cross catchers in yards receiving with 8,685, trailing Tim Brown and Fred Biletnikoff — each Corridor of Famers.

Department was a semifinalist for the Professional Soccer Corridor of Fame in 2004 and 2010.

“All my friends that I performed towards and which are within the Corridor of Fame, they inform me that I should be within the Corridor of Fame,” Department informed the Raiders’ web site in a current interview. “It is the crowning glory, identical to getting a Tremendous Bowl ring.”

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Extra AP NFL: https://apnews.com/tag/NFL and https://twitter.com/AP—NFL



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