Donates water to Flint residents
Cher donates over 180,000 bottles of water to Flint residents in response to the water crisis. Shipments will start on 18 Jan. The water will be distributed through the Food Bank of Eastern Michigan and was provided through Icelandic Glacial, where the singer had contacts who agreed to double Cher’s donation. Cher:
This is a tragedy of staggering proportion and it’s shocking that it’s happening in the middle of our country.
Activates National Guard
Gov. Snyder activates the Michigan National Guard to assist in the distribution of clean drinking water to Flint residents in response to the city’s drinking water crisis. The Red Cross will now be free to go door-to-door to provide more personal services. Flint’s drinking water became contaminated with lead when the city’s water supply was switched from Lake Huron to the Flint River in 2014.
As we work to ensure that all Flint residents have access to clean and safe drinking water, we are providing them with the direct assistance they need in order to stretch our resources further. The Michigan National Guard is trained and ready to assist the citizens of Flint.
Smog red alert
Beijing issues smog red alert, ruling that all schools and businesses be shut down.
Escalator swallows Chinese woman
A woman (Xiang Liujuan) dies after falling into an escalator in a shopping centre in central China. Surveillance footage shows a metal panel at the top of the escalator giving way, causing the woman and her toddler to stumble. Employees standing at the top of the escalators tried to pull the woman to safety, but were unable to stop her from being pulled in. The woman pushes her child to safety. The incident in Jingzhou, in Hubei province, has sparked widespread anger at the department store.Local authorities are investigating the incident.
Cosmopolitan Hotel fire
A fire at the Cosmopolitan Hotel poolside in Las Vegas injures two and forces guests to evacuate as it burns trees and cabanas. The cause of the fire is under investigation. Fire Chief:
There was some damage to some windows; very, very minor damage to the building. It was contained to the pool area.
27 pilgrims killed in stampede
At least 27 pilgrims die in a stampede in the southern Indian state of Andhra Pradesh while gathering at the Godavari river at the start of the Maha Pushkaralu festival. Pilgrims believe that taking a bath in the river will rid them of their sins. Police:
The incident happened as the first set of worshipers were coming out of the river after taking a dip and then got in the way of others who wanted to be in the water at an auspicious time. It was a frightening situation, with women and children crying for help. The policemen on duty were helpless and it took more than an hour to bring the situation under control.
Philippine factory fire deaths rise to 72
More than 70 people die in a fire at a footwear factory in the Philippines. The fire rages for over five hours on the outskirts of the capital, Manila. The total number of survivors remains unclear but five people are pulled alive from the blaze. The rising death toll comes as a relative of several of the victims said the blaze trapped workers in the building’s second floor where iron grills on windows prevented their escape. The building was occupied by the Kentex Manufacturing Corp. factory. Fire Marshal:
Arson investigators will look into why people were unable to escape from the second floor when there was a ‘sufficient exit’ that includes a wide stairway to the back of the building leading to the outside.
AER issues rules to regulate fracking, and monitor and prevent earthquakes in the province. Alberta has the third proven crude oil reserve in the world, after Saudi Arabia and Venezuela. All oil producers must show the impact of fracking, and implement a monitoring and response program. Jim Ellis, AER’s CEO:
While these seismic events have not impacted public safety, it is our job to take this precautionary step to ensure energy resources in this area are developed in a safe and responsible manner.