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Hurricane Dean Makes Second Landfall; Helicopter Crash in Iraq Kills 14; Six Dead, Thousands of Homes Impacted in Minnesota Floods; Hundreds Evacuated in Ohio Flooding; Costly Contraception
Aired August 22, 2007 - 13:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
ANNOUNCER: This is CNN breaking news.
KYRA PHILLIPS, CO-HOST: Hello, everyone. I'm Kyra Philips at the CNN world headquarters in Atlanta.
DON LEMON, CO-HOST: And I'm Don Lemon.
Breaking news this hour. Hurricane Dean has just made a second landfall.
PHILLIPS: Jacqui Jeras has been tracking Dean since it was a storm. What's the latest, Jacqui?
JACQUI JERAS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Yes, it made landfall about 40 miles down southeast of Tuxpan and near a small town called Tecolutla. You can see Tuxpan. Right about here is where the hurricane has just come ashore right now as a Category 2 with 100 mile-per-hour maximum sustained winds.
We're getting very little information in terms of being able to check out some of the weather observation sites. Most of them are down. But Poza Rica at the top of last hour was reporting winds at 55 miles per hour. So that's sustained. Tropical storm force winds, and of course, they're certainly getting gusts well beyond that now.
And we're watching this move westward at this time. And all of the heavy rain will be making its way on inland.
Now it will be weakening pretty rapidly here as it moves inland, because it's going to move toward the mountainous region. You can see it pushing down towards a Category 1 this evening and then becoming a tropical depression by tomorrow morning.
I want to show you our Google Earth animation here, because this will give you a better idea of what the topography looks like. There you can see the hurricane as it moves ashore.
And if we can zoom in, and I'll show you the region where this is all flat right here. And then you can see the mountainous areas. And there are quite a few big cities located in here that could be affected. There's Mexico City to the south of it and, hopefully, we'll see it stay on up to the north of that region. But five to ten inches of rain with locally heavier amounts.
So again, in case you missed it at the top of the hour, we officially have landfall now, second landfall from Hurricane Dean.
PHILLIPS: All right. We'll keep following all the movement with you. Jacqui Jeras, thanks so much.
LEMON: The outer bands of Dean have been lashing the Mexican port city of Tuxpan since early this morning. And CNN's Ed Lavandera is smack in the middle of it. As a matter of fact, Ed is in the eye, so all the winds are swirling around you, Ed.
ED LAVANDERA, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Don.
Well, we've seen the bands of wind steadily come through in the city of Tuxpan, which is a city of about 130,000 people. And a principal port, because it's so close to Mexico City.
And the reason it is here is this river, kind of an interesting situation going on with it now. As these winds from the first bands of the hurricane have been coming on shore here, this river is actually supposed to be going back the other way, toward the Gulf of Mexico. But the winds, you can see here, you can really see how strong the current is at this point, as the currents continue to push the river upstream instead of downstream.
So as the storm continues, you'll actually see the reverse of this here in a few hours, where the river will start heading back out. Of course, this is what the principal concern is here. The winds kind of come in strong gusts, and they've actually quieted down here a little bit. But they'll probably pick up here shortly again.
But they're really concerned about flooding. Many people around here have been waiting until the last minute to figure out whether or not they were going to evacuate their homes.
And we have seen over and over rescue teams go out with buses to remote areas in villages, trying to get those people to shelter, in temporary shelters that have been set up here in the city. We understand that more than 500 people had done that.
But we still see those buses and teams still going out and doing that kind of work. It's become very precarious up in the mountains. Homes are rather poor and not very well built, and they're concerned with mudslides and many of these homes just being wiped away -- Don.
LEMON: CNN's Ed Lavandera, reporting for us from Tuxpan. Thank you so much for that report, Ed.
PHILLIPS: All right. Now I'm told it's coming down pretty hard, the rain. And also the wind's picking up in and around Nautla. That's in the northern part of Veracruz state, and that's where CNN's Karl Penhaul just filed this report moments ago.
KARL PENHAUL, CNN CORRESPONDENT: We're in the town of Nautla, a village of about 300 people some 100 miles or 150 kilometers north of the major port city of Veracruz.
In the early hours of the morning, it's been driving torrential rain like this you can see now. That, the experts, say could bring with it the risk of flooding, and if the hurricane-force winds (UNINTELLIGIBLE) the Sierra Madre Mountains behind me, that could also bring the risk with it of mudslides.
The winds have been picking up and driving. We've seen tin roofs ripped off houses. We've seen some of the straw roofs and wood structures also destroyed.
Battering waves are coming into the shore line.
We went into the village of Nautla, and the police there, the local police were doing their rounds, doing final preparations, getting people to go inside, to batten down the hatches. They said that they had evacuated at least 50 people, including women and children, this morning, moving them from some of the lower lying areas to higher ground.
PHILLIPS: Now from Mexico back here to the United States, we've been following, of course, conditions here. You heard at the top of the hour, we had breaking news about this hurricane making landfall.
Jacqui Jeras, you've got an update for us now?
JERAS: Yes. You know, it's very interesting to watch these two reporters out there. Based on their location, you would think that the exact opposite conditions would be occurring.
Here's where Karl Penhaul is, down here, and he should technically be, quote unquote, "on the good side of the storm," where the winds are coming in offshore.
Up here, this is where Ed is, and I'm guessing right now that Ed is probably right in the eye of the storm. It made landfall about 40 miles to the south-southeast of Tuxpan and it's moving to the west- northwest, so you can see how calm the winds were there, where Ed was.
So we want him to kind of batten down the hatches, so to speak here, because I think the back side of the storm is going to be coming on through, and the winds should be picking up very dramatically, maybe even within the next half an hour or so.
PHILLIPS: When you say the wind's picking up dramatically, what are we talking about, Jacqui?
JERAS: Well, the back side of the storm. You know, he's in the eye. And that's where all the calm conditions are. And in a hurricane, a lot of times, you can actually look up and see blue sky, and the winds are very calm there.
But the eye wall, that we call it, is the ring of strong thunderstorms just surrounding the eye. That's where the worst of the winds are; that's where the worst of the turbulence is.
So, say, you know, an hour ago, things were kicking up where Ed was as he was saying. Now conditions are calm. And as the back side of the eye wall comes on through, we'll watch for the conditions to go downhill.
And that's what happens when a lot of people get caught off guard in hurricanes. The winds go down and all of a sudden, everything looks really good. And they come outside. They want to assess the damage. But then that back eye wall comes in, and they didn't know it was coming. And that's how people can get injured.
PHILLIPS: All right. And I'm being told, we just saw moments ago Karl Penhaul. We were able to get a feel for where he was, Jacqui, there on the map.
PHILLIPS: Am I saying this right? It's Nautla, right? Nautla?
JERAS: I'm not Spanish, so I'm not sure.
PHILLIPS: OK. All right. I know, we're learning all kinds of things. But that's not far from Tuxpan where Ed Lavandera is. There we go. It's a little farther down.
JERAS: Yes, yes. He's down here. Here is Poza Rica. This is a very populated town. And this is where Karl is.
And like I said, the winds should be coming in offshore here. But it's been kind of a lopsided storm, where most of the heavier showers and thunderstorms have been on the south side. Now you can see it's a little bit more balanced out. So we do think Ed is going to be seeing those conditions going downhill pretty quickly.
PHILLIPS: All right. And I'm told we're going to get live to there with Karl Penhaul in just a few moments.
Jacqui Jeras, we'll keep tracking all the movement, of course, Hurricane Dean, with you. Thanks so much.
And if you want to impact your world and actually help the victims of Hurricane Dean right now, you can log on to CNN.com/impact. We can help connect you to the relief programs in that region.
LEMON: And also, dozens of people rescued, dozens waiting for help. Everyone anxiously waiting for the water. Well, that's happening right now in towns across north central Ohio.
Authorities they've rescued about 100 people from flooded-out homes in the Findlay area. About 100 more are waiting for help. People are scrambling to higher ground anywhere they can find it, especially in places such as Mansfield.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP) MELVIN RISTER, RESCUED BY COAST GUARD: Basically, we were -- we were up -- we were trapped on the roof. High wind and stuff. The Coast Guard actually come in with a helicopter and dropped a line. And Officer Dolittle there come down, strapped us up and basically pulled us up, pulled us up to safety and flew us off to Mansfield Lahm Airport.
PETTY OFFICER BRIAN DOOLITTLE, U.S. COAST GUARD: It was a pretty good case in itself. We got a report of people stuck on the roof with some flooding, so as we flew in and located them, we circled back around, came into -- pilot brought it into a hover, lowered me down on the cable to them. Talked to each individual, make sure none of them were injured. Make sure that there was just the two of them, and hoisted them up one at a time.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Also in Mansfield, floods put about 30 post office vehicles under water, pretty much shutting down mail service. A live report from Ohio in just a few moments right here in the CNN NEWSROOM.
In other parts of the country, it's not just hot outside, it is deadly. And people in Tennessee, especially Memphis, know that more than anyone.
The city is delivering fans to people who don't have air conditioning. There you see them there, delivering those fans in boxes. Triple-digit temperatures are blamed for at least 14 deaths in Tennessee, all but one of them in the Memphis area. It is estimated the nationwide death toll from the heat is more than 50.
PHILLIPS: Now to Iraq. Fourteen U.S. soldiers dead in northern Iraq today in a helicopter crash just before dawn. We can get details and military reaction now from CNN's Arwa Damon. She's live in Baghdad -- Arwa.
ARWA DAMON, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Kyra, that's right. Now the U.S. military saying that they're still investigating that crash that took place just outside of the northern oil-rich city of Kirkuk.
They're saying that initial indications are that it was not brought down by hostile gunfire, rather that it seemed to be some sort of a mechanical failure.
But this did take place, as you just mentioned, in the late hours of the night. The troops were on a combat operation. We are seeing an increased pace of operations throughout the entire country, as the U.S. military tries to go on and target the insurgency here.
But today, the insurgency did once again continue to improve its ability to continue to strike at the Iraqi people. We saw a suicide truck bomb that slammed into an Iraqi police station compound. And that alone claimed at least 37 lives and wounded over 80 people.
Still very, very difficult times in this country, Kyra.
PHILLIPS: Arwa Damon, live from Baghdad.
LEMON: Leave Iraq today, deal with the Vietnam effect tomorrow. That's what President Bush says he wants to avoid. He made his case this morning to the Veterans of Foreign Wars convention in Kansas City.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GEORGE W. BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES: Three decades later, there is a legitimate debate about how we got into the Vietnam war and how we left. There's no debate in my mind that the veterans from Vietnam deserve the high praise of the United States of America.
Whatever your position is on that debate, one unmistakable legacy of Vietnam is that the price of America's withdrawal was paid by millions of innocent citizens, whose agonies would add to our vocabulary new terms, like boat people, reeducation camps, and killing fields.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: The president cited published comments from Osama bin Laden, saying the American people would rise against the Iraq war the same way they rose against the war in Vietnam.
PHILLIPS: Well, at the center of a media storm and the focus of growing anger from the families of six missing miners, we're going to talk live with Bob Murray, co-owner of the Crandall Canyon mine.
LEMON: Plus, flood-ravaged Minnesota looks to the feds for disaster funds. Governor Tim Pawlenty joins us with the very latest on that.
PHILLIPS: And sticker shock on college campuses, not over tuition or books but the cost of birth control.
You're watching CNN, the most trusted name in news.
PHILLIPS: And as you know, as we've been reporting, Hurricane Dean making its second touchdown in Mexico. And Karl Penhaul had called in to us, telling us he was feeling the affects from Hurricane Dean.
And this was just moments ago when he was getting ready for his live shot. We were able to capture these images. You'll see him there on the deck, getting ready to go live. And you can see the affects from the hurricane as he was struggling just to maintain his position so we could talk to him about what he was feeling and seeing.
Let's listen just for a minute.
Now, we've been talking about Hurricane Dean. It was on the outer bands of the Mexican port city of Tuxpan. That's where our Ed Lavandera is. Our Karl Penhaul right there in Nautla. The rains obviously have been coming down, the winds picking up in that area.
We're going to try and talk to Karl Penhaul live in just a few minutes.
LEMON: Let's talk about what's happening here in this country. Thousands of homes destroyed, damaged or made unlivable, all because of flash floods in southern Minnesota. People are desperate for relief, but it might not come quick enough.
Joining us on the phone right now, Minnesota Governor Tim Pawlenty.
It's good to talk to you again, Governor. Wish it was better circumstances.
GOV. TIM PAWLENTY, MINNESOTA: Well, thank you for your concern and for the concerns and prayers from your viewers, as well.
LEMON: Yes. How much more can you guys deal with? That's the question.
PAWLENTY: Well, we went from, early in the year, from fires to drought to bridge collapsing and now to floods. And so we've had a challenging year in Minnesota. But you know, all that tragedy and challenge, there's some wonderful stories of Minnesotans responding. But we've got a lot of work to do still.
LEMON: Yes, and we want to hear about those stories. So tell me, what are you doing now? You're -- according to a person at the emergency management office, or somewhere I read they said that the reality is starting to set in for you and for the folks there in the Midwest with all this floodwater?
PAWLENTY: Well, there's -- just to give you a measure of the magnitude of this storm, the previous single day rain record in Minnesota was a little over 10 inches in the early 1970s. There are unofficial reports that one day of rain earlier this week was over 15 inches in parts of the state where there are hills which then aggregate the water into creeks and valleys in a way that's extremely powerful and destructive. And that's been, in part, what happened here.
But of course, there's thousands of homes that have been impacted, and lives and families, some of which are destroyed entirely. Some of which are severely damaged, some less so.
But now that the adrenaline of the initial response has worn off, people are waking up to a very different situation than they thought they had a week ago in their lives. And it's very dramatic and traumatic for so many Minnesota families.
LEMON: How many homes are we talking about here? Do you have an idea yet?
PAWLENTY: I do. A preliminary count is a little over 4,000 homes... LEMON: Wow.
PAWLENTY: ... have some degree of damage. Now, some of that is total destruction; others maybe just have wet basements, and everything in between.
LEMON: What about injuries or lives lost, Governor?
PAWLENTY: There's approximately six lives that have been lost in this incident that we know of.
LEMON: I'm sorry. I missed it. Say that again.
LEMON: Six. OK. All right.
Governor Pataki (sic), thank you -- or Pawlenty. Sorry about that. You're from New York City. But governor, thank you so much for joining us, and we wish you well with that.
PAWLENTY: Thank so much. Appreciate it.
PHILLIPS: And we were talking about Hurricane Dean, how it touched down a second -- for the second time today.
We want to get back now to Karl Penhaul. We understand we've got him live out of Nautla, where we talked to him just a little while ago. That's the northern part of Veracruz state.
Karl, give us a feel for conditions right now. Doesn't seem like it's getting any better.
PENHAUL: (UNINTELLIGIBLE) Kyra. We understand that the hurricane made landfall about 20 minutes to a half an hour ago, and in that time, in fact, we did notice a shift in the wind. We kind of get (ph) that it was making landfall by the way the wind was blowing.
As you can see now the wind still very strong here, and it's still bringing this driving rain. This driving rain has been coming down now for about six hours. And that, the civil defense officials and weather experts say, could be a bigger problem than the wind.
Why? Because this area is prone to flooding, because of a lot of rivers that are flowing down from the Sierra Madre Mountains south to the sea here. There's a lot of battling waves (ph) from the sea. And so the experts here say that may provoke flooding. It could also provoke landslides up there in the mountains.
Now, just before the hurricane made landfall, we managed to get out to the town of Nautla, a town of about 3,000 people. The police were doing their rounds there, trying to make sure that everybody was safe. They say that they have been able to evacuate 50 people, including women and children.
That seems to follow a pattern, we understand, up and down the coast of Veracruz state, where more than 10,000 people took to shelters before this storm struck, moving away, primarily, from the low ground to take the high ground -- Kyra.
PHILLIPS: Karl, you mentioned about 10,000 people along the area there of Veracruz state being evacuated. Where are they going to? Are there enough shelters, and have you been able to visit any of those shelters?
PENHAUL: The Mexican authorities are extremely well prepared. They're putting out public service announcements. The shelters that they're using (ph) are either in churches or chapels or, in the case of Nautla, in one of the gymnasium centers.
But in the case, locally here, at least, people are being evacuated at the last moment. People expected this hurricane to come ashore several hours later than in fact, it did. And so as winds started to pick up, at that point, the police decided it was not safe for some people and pulled forward the evacuation program by a number of hours -- Kyra.
PHILLIPS: Karl, I know it's probably tough to hear. If you could just stay with us. Our Jacqui Jeras coming into the picture now.
Jacqui, you and I were talking about Nautla, trying to figure out exactly where it is, a little further down there from Tuxpan, where Ed Lavandera is. Anything you want to try to find out from Karl as you're tracking the movement here of Hurricane Dean?
JERAS: Well, I guess I'm most interested in how long he's been enduring these winds. These about -- roughly guessing, maybe 60 miles away from the center of this storm. And the hurricane-force winds extend out about 70 miles out.
So I'm expecting that you could be receiving at least strong tropical storm force or maybe weak Category 1 hurricane winds. Is it very gusty, or do you have a real steady wind coming in?
PENHAUL: No, this wind has been coming in at this pace now for about the last 3 1/2 or four hours. At one stage, the wind was moving in the opposite direction and about a half an hour, the winds flipped around completely, did 180-degree flip,. But this wind has been responsible (UNINTELLIGIBLE) for at least four or five hours. The driving rain has been coming down for about six hours, as well.
I did hear from one of the earlier reports that landfall may have, in fact, just been south of Tuxpan, at a place called Tecolutla. Tecolutla on the map here, it's about 20 miles north of where we are. So if that's where, in fact it did, in fact, make land full, I think it's safe to say what we've been feeling for the last few hours is (UNINTELLIGIBLE) definitely hurricane force winds.
JERAS: Absolutely. You're actually closer to the eye wall than you I actually thought you were. In fact, you're in some of the worst conditions, as well, only 20 miles away. So certainly, you could even be receiving Category 2 winds or gusts up to that high. We're expecting your conditions are going to stay that way probably, Karl, for another hour or so, and then we'll gradually watch this wane off a little bit as the storm begins to pull away from you.
PHILLIPS: All right. Jacqui Jeras, thanks so much. And we're going to keep in touch with Karl Penhaul there in Nautla. Karl, thanks.
We're going to keep tracking the movement of Hurricane Dean, making its second landfall right there in the state of Mexico -- Don.
LEMON: Waters rising, whole towns sinking. More rain falling. Thousands of people in the Midwest and plains seeing some of the worst flooding in years. Live from one town suffering underwater. That's straight ahead, in CNN NEWSROOM.
LEMON: Hundreds of people out of their home. Many of them had to be rescued from rising floodwaters. Let's get straight to Findlay, Ohio, and WTVG reporter Melissa Andrews, our affiliate there.
Melissa, what can you tell us?
MELISSA ANDREWS, WTVG CORRESPONDENT: Don, the entire city of Findlay is underwater this afternoon.
We're on state Route 12 East here. It is a major exit off of Interstate 75, an exit that is very well traveled, and today it is closed down.
Now, Findlay is a city that's normally known as Flag City. As you can see behind me, flag City is looking more like Flood City, USA, today.
And you can see this fence behind me, probably about a four or five-foot fence just covered with water. This gas station flooded out, the same as that road.
You can see a car over there, dangerously trying to get through that water, and if he were caught right now, the sheriff's department would probably arrest that person. That is because this area is under what's called a flood emergency, a level three flood emergency. That means if anyone attempts to go along these roads they could be arrested.
And if you take a look a little bit to the left, you can see an entire cemetery. It is a huge cemetery. It is flooded this afternoon.
Now, we are told about 2,200 to 2,500 people have been affected by the flooding.
LEMON: Hey, Melissa, are you there?
ANDREWS: Yes. LEMON: Is that someone trying to drive through this water, or are they stuck there?
ANDREWS: Yes, I was just telling you, that car was attempting to drive through that water. It looks like they are stopped right now. They're staying inside that car. But, again, at this point in the flood emergency, that is illegal, according to the sheriff's department.
LEMON: Yes. Illegal and very dangerous. And any time we have these situations, Melissa, we're always told to not to drive through that water, and it's exactly what people do.
Melissa, thank you. Our reporter there on the ground in Findlay. We appreciate that report.
Don't drive through this -- this water at all.
And I'm sure, Jacqui Jeras, will you weigh in on this? Nine inches of rain since Monday, probably a lot more than that, and folks are trying to drive through this floodwater -- Jacqui.
JERAS: Yes, it's just incredible. There were some locally heavier amounts up to 11 inches that we've seen. And that's all estimated by Doppler radar. It all came in a very short period of time, flooding things out.
In fact, that's on the Blanchard River over there, and the Blanchard River, as of 9 a.m. this morning, was just over 18 feet. When it gets up to 18.5 feet, that's record floods. So this is certainly very devastating for that town.
Also, I-75 runs right through it. It was shut down for a time yesterday due to the flooding, and from what I understand, at times only a couple of lanes have been open.
So if you are traveling in that area, you need to use just an extreme amount of caution and don't drive through there, like you said. That's how most people die in flooding situations, by just not playing it smart. And they think the water's not as deep as it really is, and they get stuck up in there. Their car stalls out. And that's when all the rescues need to take place.
And more than 100 rescues have taken place in this area, by the way, in the last two days.
This is Findlay. This is Interstate 75. And from about Findlay, sitting westward to Lima. There you can see that on the map. And over here towards Mansfield. That's where that big line of all the heavy rain has come down.
But there you see the radar picture, and the rain has really come to an end, and the sun is coming out, trying to dry things up a little bit. It's going to take a couple of days for that water to recede and get back within its banks. The flood warnings are still in effect here and some flood watches, as well, to the east of there. But there is more rain potentially in the forecast later on this week, and here's where it's coming from. It's coming from Nebraska and Iowa at this time, where the flood warnings remain in effect here, too.
We're talking about very significant flooding in Fort Dodge, Iowa, all the way up here into southeastern Minnesota where we talked to the governor about the conditions there, where they had the record 24-hour rainfall from anywhere in the state of Minnesota. And look at these showers coming through from around Sioux City up toward Storm Lake, Lake Okoboji, if you know that area. A real good, fun summer place to be. This rain is coming down at the rate of a couple of inches per hour. So this is flooding rain. It's heading on up to there towards southern Minnesota. So we're real concerned about it.
This is the forecast rainfall for the next 48 hours and there you can see things looking pretty good across Ohio. Maybe another half of an inch of rainfall here in the next two days. So that's some great news.
But look at this on up to the north, across Minnesota into Iowa. Look at these reds. Look at that purple swath coming through there. That's greater than six inches right over towards Sioux City and up towards Storm Lake. Here's southeastern Minnesota, around Winona. That is expecting to see anywhere between maybe three to five additional rainfall totals.
And then we've also had some flooding south of Milwaukee and north of Chicago, where the Fox River is out of its banks. You guys could e picking up another couple of inches as well in the next two days. We just have a really active weather pattern, guys, and we keep seeing these little disturbances move on through there aggravating the situation.
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: Unbelievable, Jacqui. And this is all from Erin, right? From Tropical Storm Erin?
JERAS: A little bit. Basically there's a frontal system that stalled out there. Erin's what caused all the flooding, remember, in Oklahoma and on into Missouri. But a little of that energy from Erin kind of got wrapped up into this system and into the Ohio Valley, though not in Minnesota.
LEMON: All right. And we're going to check in with you on Dean in just a little bit.
Jacqui Jeras, much appreciated.
KYRA PHILLIPS, CNN ANCHOR: California led the nation in foreclosure filings last month. We're going to take a bit of a turn now and talk about a state consumer group proposing something that could save some homes. Let's go to the New York Stock Exchange and our Susan Lisovicz following this for us today.
Hi, Susan. SUSAN LISOVICZ, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Hi, Kyra.
Well, consumer advocates are calling for a moratorium. That's basically a legal, temporary suspension of payments. The California Reinvestment Coalition says a six-month moratorium would give officials time to "figure out how to keep people in their homes." California reported more than 39,000 foreclosure filings in July, according to Realty Trac. That's the most of any state for the seventh month in a row. So it's not a solution, but it's some time to maybe figure some things out.
PHILLIPS: Well, there's also more fallout in the job market related to that housing crisis. Tell us about that.
LISOVICZ: Well, that's something we've been talking about increasingly, Kyra. Accredited Home Lenders are slashing 1,600 jobs and closing 65 branches. The company also says it will immediately stop taking applications for new loans, but it will honor existing loans.
And HSBC's U.S. mortgage unit plans to close a branch in Indiana next year. That would cut 600 positions. The bank says workers will have a chance to apply for other jobs within the company.
Meanwhile, luxury home builder Toll Brothers said its quarterly profits tumbled 85 percent. Toll Brothers CEO said he saw more cancellations than at any time in the company's 21-year history. But Toll Brothers managed to stay in the black and beat expectations. Toll Brothers shares jumping 3.5 percent.
And the market as a whole is rallying because of some fresh news on the merger front. "The Wall Street Journal" says online brokerages E*Trade and T.D. Ameritrade are talking about a possible combination. Plus MGM Mirage says Dubai World plans to invest about $5 billion in the casino giant. The deal would give Dubai a minority stake and MGM an entree to the Vegas Strip.
A big worry has been that takeovers would dry up amid the recent credit crunch. Investors also considering news that the four biggest U.S. banks took the unusual step of borrowing $2 billion directly from the Federal Reserve after it slashed its discount rate, surprisingly. That's a stunning announcement on Friday.
Right now the Dow has shaved about half of its gains, but still up 77 points or half a percent. The Nasdaq composite's up 2/3 of a percent.
In the next hour of NEWSROOM, a monster of a hack job. I'll tell you which job search website was hit by data theft. I'm sure you can figure it out by now.
Kyra, back to you.
PHILLIPS: OK. Yes. That's something we've all been . . . LISOVICZ: Well gave you enough clues.
PHILLIPS: That's right. We got the clue. We saw it right there. All right, we'll talk again.
Susan, thanks so much.
LISOVICZ: You got it.
PHILLIPS: Straight ahead, a public crisis gets increasingly personal for Utah mine owner Bob Murray. We're going to have details on a confrontation at a funeral for one of those rescue workers, straight ahead in the CNN NEWSROOM.
LEMON: And the NAACP has a message for the NFL about Michael Vick. Details on a high-profile defense maneuver straight ahead in the NEWSROOM.
PHILLIPS: Crews in Utah have just finished drilling a fifth bore hole into a shaft in the Crandall Canyon Mine. Searchers, again, plan to bang on the drill bit in hopes of getting a response from six miners who haven't been heard from since the mine caved in August 6th. Reports suggest the rescue effort will be called off if there are no signs of life today. Meantime, mine co-owner Bob Murray is still taking heat over that rescue mission and the overall safety of his operations. He joins us now from Huntington, Utah, to talk about it all.
Obviously, Bob, a number of questions for you. A lot of back and forth on this rescue mission and also the mine itself. Let me start with the recent talk about closing down this mine. Is that your plan, to close it down?
BOB MURRAY, CHAIRMAN, MURRAY ENERGY CORP: Yes, ma'am, Kyra. When I helped rescue the heroes Thursday night from within the mine, when I came out, the following morning I told Mr. Stickler, the assistant secretary of labor, that that mountain is alive and that I have no plans to go back in there, and that I would be submitting papers to MSHA in that regard.
A rumor was started by the United Mine Workers. It's false statements they have made. False statements from the beginning. But I've watched them for 50 years and they have preyed on the tragedy of miners and their families to put out false information to organize their union. They even had picket out here at one of the operations during the time that I've been on this mountain trying to save these miners and trying to administer to their families.
Ma'am, there was never any intent to go back in this mine.
PHILLIPS: All right. So I have two questions then for you. The first one is, let me follow up on what you just said. You do not plan to go back inside that mine to look for the six miners. Is that correct? MURRAY: Ma'am, I've said from the very beginning to the families, and I met with them every three hours, I was here within hours of the August 6th tragedy. I'm the CEO. They're my responsibility. I'm not going to pass it off on someone else.
I met with them every three hours for days and I'm still meeting with them in conjunction with the Mine Safety and Health Administration. I told them from the beginning that the only way to get the trapped miners out, dead or alive, is to get them out through the mine. We hired eight in conjunction with MSHA, top ground control engineers, experts in the country, got a report from them three days ago that said the mine is still active seismically, we cannot send rescue miners in there.
So that is totally precluded. And I have told the families that if the miners are deceased, that was the only way we could get to them.
PHILLIPS: OK. So, Bob, please clarify me. Miners are no longer going to go into that mine. The only operation you're going to continue on with is the drilling from the outside? Is that correct? Just yes or no.
MURRAY: Yes, ma'am, that is correct.
PHILLIPS: OK. All right. So let's clarify that.
Now my next question. As you continue to drill from the outside, is your plan once -- are you going to -- let me put it this way. Do you think you could close the mine and this could become a grave site for those miners, or are you going to continue to drill a hole until you find bodies?
MURRAY: Ma'am, there is no way to continue to drill holes until we find bodies. That earthquake or seismic activity on August 6th, I'm told, was 10,000 times the force that killed two of my employees and injured five of them Thursday night.
I had my hands on them in the mine. We're not going to risk more live people to go in there to get dead bodies. If, indeed we find life in the present bore hole or the next one we drill, then we will decide what we do then to try to rescue the live miner. But it's very doubtful at this time.
And I told the families this three days ago. I hated to tell them that. They're in so much grief. But I've been consistent and I've told them that and have told you that since August 6th, the only way to get them out is underground.
But, nevertheless, we will look at it. After the sixth bore hole, Kyra, I don't have any more options and I don't think MSHA does of anywhere that they could be that we could drill. That seismic activity was devastating.
PHILLIPS: Understandable. All right. So this is going to be the final drilling operation, that's what I'm understanding from you. So I guess my next question then is, Bob, if you are not able to find those bodies or signs of life once you drill this file hole, will this become a grave site for those six miners, a memorial for these miners, and will this mine be closed down?
MURRAY: Yes, ma'am. It is already been closed down, except for the recovery of some of the outside equipment. It will not be reopened. We're already discussing how we might go about to honor the trapped miners and to make this a site for perpetuity.
We are not giving up, however, that there might be life in there. And that last hope, Kyra, won't be done until sometime Saturday or Sunday at the earliest. And we're going to keep going until we run out of options. But it's certainly looking dim.
PHILLIPS: And, you know, my heart just sank, Bob, because I think we're hearing this from you for the very first time that, if, indeed, you don't find anything as you drill this final hole, that this mine is closing down and this is going to become the final resting place for these six miners. I know you've been talking a lot with the family members. Have they accepted this?
MURRAY: Kyra, it depends on which family members you're talking about. The trapped miners' families accused me of being away from them for a few days. We had representatives there. MSHA was handling it fine. I've been up at the mine the whole time addressing the rescue effort.
But the media is forgetting the real heroes in this. And these are the three men that died Thursday night and the six who were injured going in and getting these trapped miners. And, ma'am, I've been administering to those families, those injured and dead miners and their families, ever since that tragic Thursday night.
PHILLIPS: And, you know . . .
MURRAY: I was there. I brought them out. And everyone is forgetting the heroes here.
PHILLIPS: Bob . . .
MURRAY: So let's not forget them.
MURRAY: Let's not forget them.
PHILLIPS: In no -- well, and I want to make something clear, because the media is getting a lot of heat. And I can tell you right now, as a journalist here at CNN and our entire news operation, in no way, shape, or form have we forgotten what each one of those miners has done. Not only the rescue workers, but the miners that are trapped in that mine. We realize after years of covering this story what miners go through and what they sacrifice to come home and support their families. So please understand that from us. So we are not criticizing what they go through on a daily basis. Now I want to ask you about you . . .
MURRAY: Kyra, I . . .
MURRAY: I believe CNN has done an excellent job in this regard. I'm just asking for your understanding, ma'am, for the families of those who were killed and injured on August 16th, as well as those on August 6th. Thank you.
PHILLIPS: And, you know, Bob, it's understandable. It's never easy to lose a loved one or face something like this. I guess the saying goes, that you just learn how to deal with it, you never get over it.
But I've got to ask you about you. There have been times you haven't been able to come do a news conference. There's been talk about you might be struggling with a heart condition. That the pressure has become too much for you. I have to ask you, how are you doing and how are you holding up? There is a lot of pressure on you right now.
MURRAY: I've been at the mountain, Kyra, within hours of August 6th. I'll stay there until this is over. This is not about me. This is about the families of six trapped miners and the families of nine heroes. And I'll be fine. I'm doing fine.
PHILLIPS: So the next time we're going to hear from you, Bob, I'm guessing will be at the end of the day when you finish this final bore hole. Is that correct?
MURRAY: Ma'am, I don't really know. I think I'll give you a report this afternoon on what we find after we drop the camera in the number five hole. And in what the -- we find in the hole both on audio basis and a visual basis. But I want to schedule that conference in conjunction with the Federal Mine Safety and Health Administration as we've done faithfully heretofore.
PHILLIPS: Bob Murray, chairman of Murray Energy, co-owner of the Crandall Canyon Mine. I appreciate your time and just your honesty during this interview and for clarifying a lot of questions for us. I know that this is not going to stop at this point. Appreciate your time, Bob.
MURRAY: Thank you, ma'am.
LEMON: And, Kyra, you can see there even during that interview when you mentioned -- I mean he appears to be out of breath. Folks are concerned about his well-being. A lot of pressure for him. Not only for him, but also for the guys who have been going in there and the families as well.
PHILLIPS: Oh, I think it's tough for the families, it's tough for the miners, it's tough for those that have gone there to try to find those six trapped miners. Bob Murray, obviously, has a lot of pressure on him as well. And I think the next step, not only talking about this final resting place for these miners, but I'm sure there's going to be continued investigation into what went wrong, why it went wrong, what types of safety problems were there with this mine and hopefully -- I mean you look at Quecreek Mine, Sago Mine, now this mine disaster, something has to be done with regard to laws and funding just to make this job somewhat safer for these miners to go out there every day and risk their lives.
LEMON: I think that's the consensus. If any good is going to come out of this, maybe it will improve mining in the country and as well as throughout the world.
PHILLIPS: Well, we can sure hope so.
LEMON: We hope so.
All right. A very nice interview. Thank you for that, Kyra.
We're going to move on now and talk about this terrible hurricane. Double trouble for Mexico. Hurricane Dean had made second landfall. Live coverage from the Mexican Gulf Coast. CNN is your hurricane headquarters.
LEMON: Round two. Hurricane Dean has just slammed into Mexico a second time, right near the town of Tecolutla. Cities along that Eastern Coast are getting hammered by 100 mile-an-hour winds and heavy rains. As the storm turns inland, flooding and mudslides become the main worry there. Our Jacqui Jeras has been tracking Dean since before it was a storm.
Where is it headed this hour, Jacqui?
JERAS: Well, it's still heading westward. And it's heading toward the mountainous region now. It's Maybe 20 miles inland as it made landfall just over an hour ago now. And take a look at this satellite imagery. We had a lot of purple as this thing was coming on in. And now notice just to the southwest of Poza Rica, that's where we're still seeing some of the purple. So it is showing some signs of weakening. And we think that's going to happen a little bit more rapidly as it heads toward the mountainous regions.
Also, another thing I want you to notice is, look how far out in advance of this storm that we're seeing some of the brighter colors here. We're getting rainfall being reported, albeit it light, in Mexico City at this time. So the rain has started and we expect to see anywhere between five and 10 inches of rainfall. But locally, heavier amounts are possible, up to 20 inches.
What happens is that wind, the air gets forced up the mountains and that provides more instability. We call it orographic lift. So the rainfall comes down at a heavier rate. And that's why we're so concerned about landslides and the mudslides.
We expect the forward speed to continue on pace, we think, over the next couple of hours. And this should be downgraded to a category one storm later on today. And even by tomorrow morning possibly a tropical depression.
Now I don't want you to get all worried about this, but I was just looking at some of the new computer model forecasts. And it actually holds it together a little bit, one of the models does, as it moves offshore.
And I've had a lot of interest from the news room and you guys as well. As it moves into the Pacific, does it get a new name? Yes, it does. So if this thing were to ramp back up, it looks like it could push up towards the gulf of California. Potentially we could have Gill out of it. But I think it's very unlikely based on the terrain. But I'll keep you posted.
LEMON: Yes, very unlikely. And a lot of people are saying they hope that does not happen.
JERAS: Hopefully not.
LEMON: And, Jacqui Jeras, you know what else we like? I-Reports here anytime.
JERAS: Oh, we love them.
LEMON: Yes. Because our i-Reporters supply some of the best video that you can see. Go to cnn.come/ireport. Or you can just go to cnn.com and click on the i-Report logo and you can solicit your videos and your photos to us.
PHILLIPS: Well straight ahead. Sex on campus. How in the world could the deficit reduction act have anything to do with college kids and contraceptives? We'll explain.
PHILLIPS: Oh, for young women, especially an unplanned pregnancy can be costly, personally and financially. That's why college students are finding a price hike for the pill so hard to swallow. CNN medical correspondent Elizabeth Cohen reports.
ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It used to be that birth control was cheap and plentiful on college campuses. But not this year. It's still plentiful, but it most certainly isn't cheap.
When students return to campus for fall semester, they'll have sticker shock, not because of the price of books, tuition, or even beer.
They're in for quite a surprise.
STEPHANIE DAVIDSON, COLUMBIA UNIVERSITY STUDENT: Yes, they really are.
COHEN: The surprise? The price of birth control is up. Way up. At the University of Iowa, for example, students used to pay $16 a month for a popular brand of birth control bills. Now they'll have to pay $52 a month. At Michigan State University, the patch used to cost $20 a month. Now it's $50. Stephanie Davidson, a senior at Columbia University, counsels students on sexual health.
$30 more a month, $40 more a month, is that a lot for college students?
DAVIDSON: An extra $30, $40 a month for many college students makes a significant difference. And it's going to be the difference between using oral contraceptives and not using oral contraceptives.
COHEN: Changes in a huge federal budget law have driven the costs up. Some lawmakers say the change was an oversight. Representative Carolyn Maloney is trying to change the law to reinstate the federal subsidies for college students. But that won't happen overnight. And in the meantime . . .
REP. CAROLYN MALONEY, (D) NEW YORK: It will mean that more college women will become pregnant in an unwanted pregnancy during their college student years. It will mean that many will have to drop out of school or face an abortion. It is a difficult situation to put college women in.
COHEN: The American College Health Association says two-thirds of college students are sexually active. Davidson worries that these students will have to choose between food, books, and birth control.
Now colleges have banded together and appealed to the federal government to change this law. But so far, those appeals have not worked.
Elizabeth Cohen, CNN, New York.
LEMON: The NAACP has a message for the NFL about Michael Vick. Details on a high-profile defense maneuver, straight ahead in the CNN NEWSROOM.
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