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Aung San Suu Kyi: Reporters Can Appeal Convictions; Pope Calls Meeting at Vatican on Clergy Child Abuse; Storm of a Lifetime Roars toward Carolina Coasts; Two Monster Storms; Trump's Distorted Reality; Rohingya Boy's Quest for Education. Aired 12-1a ET

Aired September 13, 2018 - 00:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


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JOHN VAUSE, CNN ANCHOR (voice-over): This is CNN NEWSROOM live from Los Angeles.

Ahead this hour: bracing for impact, 25 million Americans in the path of a monster as Hurricane Florence barrels toward the Carolinas. And a typhoon packing an even bigger punch, heading towards the Philippines, Hong Kong and China. Right now winds up to 240 kilometers an hour.

Also this hour, a lost generation. Already they've been targets for genocide and now hundreds of thousands of Rohingya children in refugee camps in Bangladesh are being denied an education.

Hello and welcome to our viewers all around the world. I'm John Vause. NEWSROOM L.A. starts right now.

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VAUSE: Right now it seems the world's oceans have exploded with typhoons and hurricanes. At this hour, two very powerful storms in particular are threatening tens of millions of lives.

In the Eastern United States, Hurricane Florence is expected to pound North Carolina's coast with tropical storm force winds by noon on Thursday.

And in Southeast Asia, the even stronger supertyphoon Mangkhut has passed Guam and is now moving toward the Philippines island of Luzon. Hong Kong and Macao are also in its direct path.

We have extensive coverage of these storms. George Howell is in Wilmington, North Carolina, where the eye of Florence is tracking closer by the hour.

Ivan Watson standing by in Hong Kong, where they're watching the approach of that super typhoon.

We also meteorologist Pedram Javaheri at our World Weather Center there in Atlanta.

First we go to you, George.

GEORGE HOWELL, CNN ANCHOR: John, good day to you. Some good news right off the top. We can report this storm has been downgraded from a category 3 to category 2. That's indeed good news. Keeping in mind a comment from my colleague, Chris Cuomo, don't get caught up here in the category.

The important thing to consider is this storm will bring great deal of rain, very strong winds and storm surges to the East Coast and flooding in many parts of the southeastern United States. Some 25 million people are in the path of this storm.

We saw just a moment ago but I want to look at this again, the full screen view of the massive storm from outer space. This is from the International Space Station earlier today. Right now, the eye of the storm, it is 280 miles away from where we are in Wilmington, North Carolina. That's about 455 kilometers away.

Incredibly impressive; you see the eye of the storm tracking here toward Wilmington and getting closer hour by hour.

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HOWELL: This is like a person walking down the street. It's a huge storm system. It is going to dump a lot of water. It is going to bring very strong winds. It is something that people have to keep in mind as this approaches the coastline.

Let's go now to nearby Carolina Beach, North Carolina, that's about 20 minutes to the south of where we are here in Wilmington, just across the bridge here. Our Derek Van Dam down there.

Derek, when it comes to this storm coming in, the raw intensity will be felt there for sure.

DEREK VAN DAM, AMS METEOROLOGIST: George, I think you guys are harping on the right chord here. It is not important that we focus on the category. We don't want to give a false sense of assurance to these people who have taken the warning seriously and evacuated so many people.

Just to put you into context where I am, I'm located in Carolina Beach just outside of Wilmington on the southern coastline of North Carolina. Residents here, about 6,000 people, most people have evacuated. There is an 8:00 pm curfew but there's still people that decided to stay, even though there was a mandatory evacuation.

The city manager said they'll patrol the streets looking for lights on in people's houses this evening, knocking on doors and making sure they know they know they shouldn't be on this island because they do have the opportunity to leave but not come back because there's actually a bridge that separates Carolina Beach from the mainland. So something to consider there.

The difference here, with this particular storm, is people are not really -- they're so accustomed to hurricanes. We've had Fran and Matthew and Diana and, of course, the benchmark storm being Hugo back in '89.

But this one is going to be more of a prolonged storm. PJ talked about that just a moment ago. This has that potential to bring several days of rainfall and inundation from storm surge and the strong winds. We're really just slicing hairs here when we talk about a strong category 2 to a strong category 3.

What people are paying attention to is the potential of storm surge, particularly where I'm located in Carolina Beach, upwards of 9 to 13 feet. That's over 3 meters of inundation above areas that are normally dry ground. That's because of the large wind field that surrounds Hurricane Florence as we speak.

HOWELL: Derek, thank you so much.

Good news for our viewers, the storm has been downgraded. When you think about people we've spoken to today, people who decided to stay here and hunker down and ride the storm out, that's good news. For people left everything behind, wondering what could be left as the storm comes in, that's good news.

But this is the most important thing, a massive storm is barreling toward the East Coast of the U.S.. It will bring storm surge. It will bring very strong winds and it will cause flooding as it stalls, as it moves very slowly, even walks its path inland here on the East Coast.

The conditions we expect to deteriorate over the next 24 hours. I'm nice and dry. You saw Pedram covering this and saying we'll see the conditions change. Derek nice and dry. That will change for sure in the next day and, of course, we'll continue to show you the latest developments here. Let's send it back to John Vause, live in Los Angeles.

VAUSE: George, there's still a long time left for you to get plenty drenched as the conditions worsen, I'm sure you will fully. Thank you for the update. Thank you for being with us. I know you have a couple of busy days in front of you. Thank you, George.

While the U.S. Is bracing for Florence, there's this even stronger supertyphoon in the Pacific taking aim at the Northern Philippines. Supertyphoon Mangkhut is expected to hit the island of Luzon in the coming hours before moving on to Hong Kong and then Southern China. Mangkhut is an equivalent of a category 5 hurricane.

Ivan Watson monitoring this storm from --

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VAUSE: -- Hong Kong. Ivan, this could be a very powerful storm by the time it reaches Hong

Kong but at least the island has infrastructure and a well resourced emergency response system there. The same can't be said of the Philippines, where millions of people are staring down a very real threat from this supertyphoon.

IVAN WATSON, CNN SENIOR INTERNATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: That's right. And the authorities there, the disaster management services, the emergency workers, they have been holding meetings. They are preparing. They've put out warnings to fishermen, for example, not to go out to sea. They've canceled classes in parts of the Northern Philippines and they're also prepositioning food for example to prepare for the potential impact of that storm.

Here in Hong Kong, it is kind of the calm before the storm or perhaps between the storms because this morning here, Hong Kong still had a typhoon advisory, a low level one from a much weaker typhoon that just passed through here. That's Typhoon Barijat. So out at the beaches, the surfers were out at sunset yesterday and the seas were high and choppy, 3- and 4-meter waves.

But as you can see now, it is quite calm and peaceful here. Right now the super typhoon is not expected to hit Hong Kong and Macao and Southern China until Saturday-Sunday. So we're at least 48 hours out.

Northern Philippines, Luzon is likely to be hit in the latter part of the day on Friday. That's where the most powerful winds could hit hard, with winds that the CNN Weather Service is predicting of up to 180 miles an hour, that's 285 kilometers per hour.

A larger storm system than Hurricane Florence hitting the Eastern Seaboard of the U.S. But perhaps more fortunate is that the storm is expected to be moving at a faster speed. So there will be less time for rain to accumulate and it is also expected to hit lower population density areas, unlike the storm that is about to hit the East Coast of the U.S.

That said, it is, according to our experts, quote, "bigger, stronger and more dangerous than Florence."

So people do need to take care.

VAUSE: What, 25 million in the U.S. under threat and more than 40 million under threat as far as the super typhoon and the Pacific is concerned. They've been through this in the Philippines back in 2013, when more than 6,000 people were killed.

Obviously, they're preparing for this and they're hoping it won't be as bad as 2013. At this point, nobody knows. We go to Pedram Javaheri once more to find out about where the path of the super typhoon might be.

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[00:15:00] VAUSE: The U.S. president says his administration is ready to deal with whatever Hurricane Florence may bring. Donald Trump canceled to trips to political rallies in Missouri and Mississippi. He's been tweeting about the storm and also released a short video on Twitter.

All this comes after he said that his administration's response to Hurricane Maria a year ago in Puerto Rico was an unsung success. That unsung success ended with a death toll close to 3,000. This time Donald Trump says the response to this natural disaster is so good and so well prepared, he's already being praised for it.

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TRUMP: People working on this. First responders, law enforcement and FEMA and they're already beginning from politicians. This is one of the biggest storms to hit our country.

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VAUSE: Let's bring in Michael Genovese, he's president of the Global Policy Institute at Loyola Marymount University and author of the book, "How Trump Governs," it's a book everyone should read.

Michael, this is the moment that usually for a president, for a commander in chief, I don't know if he relishes these moments. But it is above the politics. They get to do what they believe they were elected to do.

They get to be the voice of authority of a nation and the final word and (INAUDIBLE) reassuring and also, tell everybody that, if the worst happens, we're ready, we're going to do it. Donald Trump is making this all about him. It is bizarre.

MICHAEL GENOVESE, CNN POLITICAL ANALYST: But it is expected. If past is prologue, he'll do this for whatever scenario develops. But this is where you get tested under fire and this is where you show leadership.

And this is where the history books start to write in the good lines if you do well.

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GENOVESE: The president gave himself an A-plus for the failures of previous hurricane relief efforts. The question is, if he really believes he deserves an A-plus, then he's delusional. If he doesn't believe it, he's lying. But either way, I think he is setting himself up for some real trouble.

My view, though, is that because this is going to hit the South, which is his people, his base, he'll take it seriously and he'll insist that his people do.

VAUSE: You mentioned this; earlier today, the president tweeted, "We got A-pluses for our recent hurricane work in Texas and Florida and did an unappreciated great job in Puerto Rico, even though an inaccessible island with very poor electricity and a totally incompetent mayor of San Juan. We are ready for the big one that is coming."

Again, this is not exactly reassuring, given the death toll in Puerto Rico. And the point is, no one gets an A-plus for emergency response. This is nuts.

GENOVESE: You focus on the people who are suffering. You don't focus on yourself. But Donald Trump seems incapable of doing that. But I think when you see the opposition that he's still facing on the island with the mayor of San Juan, Mayor Cruz, talking about his performance being despicable and the popularity ratings on the island very low in terms of the response.

And studies have been done by Harvard and others say that it was a bad response. I think the president is in deep trouble and he's on a bubble; if something goes wrong, he'll really take a big hit for this.

A Trump biographer was quoted in "The Washington Post."

"One of his great strengths is that he lives in his own reality distortion field -- there is this narrative going on all the time in his head about how successful he is, how great he is. One of the things that allows him to plow ahead after he makes mistakes."

That could be a really good asset when you (INAUDIBLE) real estate deal and everything goes south and it's actually your fault, you convince yourself you didn't do it and you move on. It is another thing when you're the commander in chief and 20 million Americans are staring down (INAUDIBLE).

GENOVESE: It is also important to be optimistic and to be hopeful and to think that you can make things better. But here are also times you need a hard dose of reality and you need to accept that, and especially when you're president and you're responsible for so many others, not just for yourself, that you have to sit back and say, let's face the hard reality.

And the hard reality is that he doesn't get an A-plus. And so you should learn from it.

You say, what can I do to become an A-plus president?

He's incapable of that.

VAUSE: That is a question he never asks.

Michael, it was quick but we'll have you back next hour because there's a lot more to get to. Thank you.

When we come back, hundreds of thousands of Rohingya children who were forced to leave their homes in Myanmar, they miss one thing above all others. They want to go to school and learn. A filmmaker joins us next with their story.

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VAUSE: Many families around the world the last few weeks have been filled with the buzz and excitement of a new school year, the unmistakable smell of fresh classroom supplies, the excitement of friendships yet to be made, the chance to start afresh and wipe the slate clean.

But most of all the promise of a better future. Education is how our hopes and dreams for our children might just come true. Do well at school and the world will be yours.

But that hope has been denied to hundreds of thousands of children for no other reason than who they are and where they live. They're Rohingya refugee children, those who fled Myanmar, either with their parents or on their own after they were orphaned by the violence of the military engaged in a brutal campaign of ethnic cleansing, genocide, according to a U.N. investigation.

Nearly 1 million Rohingya have fled to neighboring Bangladesh and there they have food, water and shelter, the most basic of medical care. But what they do not have is education. There are no classrooms, no teachers, no books, only an inadequate number of overcrowded temporary learning centers. Many don't have water or sanitation, let alone a curriculum. The U.N. fears all of this could lead to an entire lost generation.

Children like 13-year-old Rashed, his family survived an eight-day journey by foot to reach the camp in Bangladesh. And along the way, he saw and endured what no child ever should. He's the kind of kid who likes to make things, like a solar powered light for the place they now call home.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).

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VAUSE: Not bad for a kid who hasn't spent a lot of time inside a classroom. (INAUDIBLE). He just wants to learn.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).

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VAUSE: Strong boy indeed. Filmmaker Timour Gregory spent weeks documenting Rashed's story for UNICEF. He joins us now from New York. Rashed's not just a strong boy, he's an amazing kid.

TIMOUR GREGORY, FILMMAKER: Incredible. One of the most intelligent, polite, caring kids that I've met on the many assignments that I've done like this for UNICEF.

VAUSE: You know, a lot of people may look at that, oh, isn't that cute?

Isn't that sweet?

But there's a lot wrapped up this light and this incredible difference it makes to the lives of his family.

GREGORY: Absolutely. So for one thing, after about 8:00 or 9:00 at night in the camps, it is pitch-black. Rashed's family, who were middle in Myanmar -- his father was a primary school teacher, his mother worked for an NGO -- aren't used to having to eat either in pitch black or by candlelight.

Rashed himself told me that he was afraid that a snake might get into the house and they wouldn't see it and it could bite his little brother. So that was one thing.

But the other which it really helped with was Rashed is obsessed with studying. He was a star pupil in Myanmar and because the educational opportunities are --

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GREGORY: -- quite limited in the camps, having this solar powered light means that he could read his textbooks all hours of the night.

So one night I was with him and his family until probably gone 10 o'clock. And all four of them were there in the living room. Rashed was studying with his dad and the mom was teaching his little sister.

So it's made an enormous difference to them. And it is all thanks to him because he is the one who figured out how to do it.

VAUSE: It's amazing.

Are all the kids like that?

Are they all just that keen to learn?

GREGORY: It is difficult for me to say that Rashed is -- I mean, Rashed is one of a kind. He's exceptional. He's teaching himself three or four languages. He can build furniture a lot better than I can and mine usually comes with instructions as well.

But having said that, I did bump into Rashed on the second day that I was in the camp, so one way of looking at that would be to say, wow, what an incredible coincidence. Another way of looking at it would be that I literally couldn't walk more than a hundred yards in this refugee camp before bumping into a kid with phenomenal talent and potential.

So I can only imagine how many other children like that there are out there on my assignment. I met a few very capable kids who had started their own businesses in the marketplaces that have sprung up. Children with artistic talent, children with dreams to become doctors and engineers.

There are 500,000 Rohingya refugee children in these camps in Bangladesh. And yes, one could only assume that there are thousands of other very talented, exceptional kids.

VAUSE: There's about 380,000 of that 500,000 I think that are actually school age kids. They're actually being refused a formal education because the authorities in Bangladesh are concerned that, if they get that, it would be encouragement for them to stay in Bangladesh and not return to Myanmar.

That's why the U.N. says, unless they get an education, you're looking at a lost generation. And here's Rashed to explain why.

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UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (Speaking foreign language).

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VAUSE: He's a blessing. He's right, if you look at the numbers, refugee kids that don't get an education, they're more likely to get exploited in terms of child labor or be abused or recruited by militant groups, a whole lot of other bad consequences if they don't get an education.

GREGORY: Yes. I think for Rashed, he wants to be a doctor. That's his dream. I think he will go on to achieve everything he wants to. I think he'll be a leader in his community. But yes, if he doesn't receive a quality education, that potential will be squandered.

For children who are less bright and less intellectually curious than Rashed, radicalization is a real risk. That's the sad reality. And for young girls who can't receive an education, they run the risk of being -- of falling into child marriages or being excluded from society all together.

So I think that's what UNICEF is trying very hard to address. They have enrolled over 90,000 of those children in learning centers, which is a huge success. They're constantly in communication with the Bangladeshi government to pass a new curriculum that will address the need of children like Rashed.

VAUSE: Education is a silver bullet for so many problems. And we're not fulfilling that obligation as an international community. So thank you for highlighting this for us.

GREGORY: My pleasure. Thank you very much. And Myanmar's leader, Aung San Suu Kyi, has been roundly criticized over the last 12 months by the international community for what the U.N. calls genocide carried out against the Rohingya. Here's what she had to say at the World Economic Forum in Vietnam.

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AUNG SAN SUU KYI, MYANMAR STATE COUNSELOR: They are of course, with hindsight I think that the situation could have been handled better. But we believe that for the sake of long-term stability and security, we have to be fair to all sides. The rule of law must apply to everybody.

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VAUSE: Mistakes were made.

She also rejected calls from the United States to release two Reuters journalists who've been sentences to seven years in prison. Aung San Suu Kyi insists they did receive a fair trial.

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SUU KYI: If anybody feels that there has been a miscarriage of justice, I would like them to point it out. And I wonder whether very many people have actually read the summary of the judgment, which had nothing to do with the freedom of expression at all. It had to do with the official secrets act.

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[00:30:13] VAUSE: The editor-in-chief of Reuters says the journalists were actually framed by police, after they uncovered a massacre of Rohingya villagers, Aung San Suu Kyi points out that they can appeal their convictions.

Well, that window for evacuation is closing as a monster hurricane bears down on the U.S. East Coast. We are live from Wilmington, North Carolina, with the very latest.

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VAUSE: Welcome back, everybody, you're watching CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause with the headlines this hour.

The Russian President, Vladimir Putin, attending what is built as Russia's largest war games since the fall of the Soviet Union. At least 300,000 Russian troops and a thousand aircraft are taking part. Also joining in, thousands of troops from China and Mongolia.

Pope Francis has called an unprecedented meeting of bishop conference, presidents, from around the world, to address the sexual abuse scandal. The latest comes from Germany where the media report the church will admit to almost 4,000 cases of child sex abuse. The Pope's meeting is to take place at the Vatican, in February, next year. Now the storm, closing in on the Northern Philippines, super typhoon

Mangkhut, the equivalent of a Category 5 hurricane, expected to hit the island of Luzon in the coming hours, before moving on to Hong Kong and then Southern China. As many as 43 million people could be affected.

HOWELL: And I'm George Howell live here in Wilmington, North Carolina. We're following, of course, the mechanics of this massive storm, Florence, moving to the East Coast, right now, downgraded from Category 3 to Category 2. That is the good news.

But still poses a great deal of risk, bringing very strong winds, bringing flooding, and storm surge here to the U.S. East Coast. That's one story, right? But there's also another, more personal story that we've been following, the story of people who had to make a choice, those who decided to leave, and certainly, know that there's a great deal of uncertainty of what could be left behind.

Those that decided to stay and hope for the very best. And we found from speaking to people, either way, it's not an easy choice.

So you're literally going to lock yourself inside there?

JOHN BENNETTE, RESIDENT OF WILMINGTON, NORTH CAROLINA: Yes. Once we get in and once the storm starts -- once the storm starts, then I'll put a couple screws like this, inside, to hold the door shut.

HOWELL: John Bennette hopes that experience will count this time around. He and his wife have been through hurricanes before, in this house, so he knows what to look out for.

BENNETTE: That some (INAUDIBLE) flood and the door blows open, then, we will run, we can't stop it. Once it comes in, you're done. You just might as well go ahead and get a boat and paddle your way out.

HOWELL: You worry about this one, John?

BENNETTE: Yes, I'm worried about this one, this storm. I'm worried about the flood.

HOWELL: And that's the common concern here, from those who've decided to stay, to the thousands who've already left. No one knows exactly the impact Florence will have on this community. What will be left behind? How bad will it be? Everyone seems to agree, though, this storm, is a beast.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is going to be, you know, a Mike Tyson punch to the Carolina Coast.

[00:35:07] HOWELL: Despite blue skies across the Carolinas, officials are preparing for the weather to take a dramatic turn, come Thursday. More than 25 million people are inside the forecast cone from the National Hurricane Center, extending from the states of Virginia to Alabama.

On the roads, law enforcement is keeping traffic moving for those who've decided to leave. Fuel is also limited, with many gas stations in the region running low. Officials warn the window is narrowing.

GOV. ROY COOPER (D), NORTH CAROLINA: The time to prepare is almost over. Disaster is at the doorstep, and it's coming in. This storm threatens life.

BENNETTE: Can't afford to leave, can't afford to stay. You know, one of those important things, you know, it's like, we got to stay, this is our home. You know, if we leave -- when I think about leaving, you can't come back for a couple of weeks sometimes, because there will be no power.

HOWELL: It's a complicated call, John admits. Many of his friends, he says, are staying. But he knows very well the risks.

HOWELL: You worried what it's going to be like in there when the lights are out? You're locked inside, and you're hearing, I mean, you know what it's like.

BENNETTE: Oh, yes.

HOWELL: The howling, screaming winds --

BENNETTE: When trees fall on your house, you can't go out and look see what's happening. When a tree (INAUDIBLE) and you hit it, and you don't know if it went through it or if you're lying in bed, you know, a tree -- one of these trees could come link and come through and actually pin you to your bed.

You don't know what's going to happen. But you just got to, you know, give it to the man upstairs and deal with it.

HOWELL: It is not an easy decision for people and certainly we're going to keep in touch with people as the storm comes in. But we have with us now, Sean Waugh. Sean is a research scientist with the National Severe Storms Lab. Give us a behind the scenes look at what it's like to actually track one of these storms. And if you could show us, Sean, your vehicle back there. Tell us about it.

SEAN WAUGH, RESEARCH SCIENTIST, NATIONAL SEVERE STORMS LAB: Right. So, the vehicle that I have me today is a mobile mesonet, and what that's designed to do is actually take service observations in and around storms, severe weather, hurricanes, whatever it is that we're studying as the Noah National Severe Storms Laboratory.

So, this vehicle is basically prepped with all the instruments that we need to make those observations. We can take surface observations off the rack, standard things like temperature, pressure, wind speed, wind direction. We could also launch weather balloons out of the back of the vehicle so we can do vertical profiles on storm as well.

HOWELL: So people would see this vehicle, you know, driving around through the storm. What's the difference in being mobile as opposed to what we've seen before, those stationary positions?

WAUGH: So, the stationary positions work really well, but they're stationary. They don't move. So it's really hard to follow different parts of the storm. It's hard to adjust, depending on where the storm is going. We can also follow the storm with the vehicle that we, you know, can't do with the stationary.

HOWELL: I see.

WAUGH: So, that has some advantages, particularly in severe weather (INAUDIBLE) with hurricanes, we could move around and we can position where the hurricane is going next time (INAUDIBLE)

So, the platform that we have up here is basically an all-in-one system. So it's designed to measure temperature, pressure, wind speed, wind direction. But it does all that while we're actually mobile. We don't have to stop to take observations.

We could take those observations driving down the road. The vehicle is actually able to take into account its own heading and speed to actually derive (INAUDIBLE) wind direction is.

HOWELL: I see. And, you know, look, people ask this question of us. We ask the same question of you. As you're driving around in these storms, how are you making sure that you're safe? Because, I mean, when you're out there, anything can happen.

WAUGH: Right. So, safety is our number one concern when we do these things. And we spend a lot of time thinking about our deployment strategy, thinking about locations. We drive around. We scout out locations ahead of time before the storm. It's not a last minute, kind of, gut decision.

We spend a lot of time thinking about storm surge and how high the water level is going to be in certain places or if there are any, you know, potential debris upstream of where we're going to be that's going to impact the vehicle.

We don't drive around, like, during the actual event, because that's dangerous. But we do spend a tremendous amount of time thinking about where we're going to operate and where we can do that safely.

HOWELL: Sean, we appreciate you being with us.

WAUGH: Hey, anytime.

HOWELL: Thank you so much. And again, people will see this vehicle, John, driving around. It's very important because they get an opportunity to get really important information data that they can take and really determine the strength of other storms, you know, the important measurements of other storms as they come in.

All of this is important news, you know, of course, as these storms, John, seem to be stronger year after year.

VAUSE: Yes, the direct link between climate change, global warming and the strengthening storms that we're seeing more and more often (INAUDIBLE) you know, would be crucial. Thank you, George, we'll talk to you next hour. In the meantime, we'll take a short break. When we come back, what will be the fate of North Carolina's wild horses when Hurricane Florence arrives?

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[00:40:00] VAUSE: With all the concerns about potential death and destruction brought on by Hurricane Florence, there's also concern, even some worry about what will happen to the wild horses of North Carolina once the hurricane arrives.

CNN's Jeanne Moos reports the (INAUDIBLE) will help them ride out the storm.

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JEANNE MOOS, CNN NATIONAL CORRESPONDENT: You know who isn't watching T.V. to find out when the hurricane hits? North Carolina's wild horses, there are over 200 of them on the outer banks. Normally, they're scratching or strolling the beach, or even rolling on the beach. But already, they sensed changes in the air pressure and are changing their behavior.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They started to huddling up together, they'll group up together, they go to high ground.

MOOS: Meg Puckett is herd manager of the Corolla Wild Horse Fund. The group's Facebook page is a magnet for concern. So worried about them, not their first rodeo, wild horses have more horse sense than people.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: If anything can survive this storm, these horses can.

MOOS: Forget evacuating them, too stressful for the wild horses, too difficult and expensive for the humans. But the experts say, the horses, wildly popular with tourists, should be fine. Usually, they're territorial, like these two stallions fighting over mares. But when bad weather hits, they band together.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They go into those (INAUDIBLE) forests and they just hunker down under those trees.

MOOS: Horses have drowned in hurricanes, five were lost when Isabel struck 15 years ago. But the expectation is that most of these horses should make it.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: They wait it out. Put their butts to the wind and wait it out.

MOOS: Instead of us riding horses, it's the horses' turn to ride the storm.

Jeanne Moos, CNN, New York.

(END VIDEOTAPE) VAUSE: Thanks for watching CNN NEWSROOM, live from Los Angeles. I'm John Vause. Stay tuned now for WORLD SPORT. You're watching CNN.

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