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American Morning

NYC After Deluge; TSA to Take Over No-Fly Lists?; Friends Of Murdered Newark Youths Talk About Community's Pain

Aired August 09, 2007 - 07:58   ET


KIRAN CHETRY, CNN ANCHOR: Disaster tour, this morning the first images from inside the collapsed Utah mine. CNN side by side with rescuers and the mine owner, still trying to find his six missing men.

ROBERT MURRAY, PRES. & CEO, MURRAY ENERGY: Well, it was a natural disaster. And you folks can debate whether it was an earthquake. My job is to get these miners.


CHETRY: The prayers of hope and a rescue effort renewed on this AMERICAN MORNING.

Welcome once again, it is Thursday, August 9th. I'm Kiran Chetry.

JOHN ROBERTS, CNN ANCHOR: Good morning to you. I'm John Roberts. Thanks for joining us. We have got the first pictures from inside the Utah mine where crews are working around the clock to make contact with six trapped miners. CNN's Gary Tuchman went three miles deep into that mine overnight. The only network reporter allowed inside during the rescue operation.

Take a look


GARY TUCHMAN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): We entered the Crandall Canyon Mine through the same tunnel the six trapped workers went through. A three-mile journey in a small truck that would take about a half hour in utter darkness. We passed rescue workers in their vehicles on the way to our ultimate destination.

MURRAY: Right there is where the rescue effort is going on.

TUCHMAN: This is as far as we could go. This is where the mine had collapsed. The six trapped miners are believed to be tantalizingly close. But with tons of coal separating them from us, this was an unusual opportunity to see how much work rescue workers still have.

You're looking at the effort to drill into the coal and rock to rescue the six men. The machine is called a continuing mining vehicle. It has a spinning drum on the front of it with blades. It cuts into the coal, rock and other debris that is mixed in from the mine collapse and then deposits it on the back of what's known as a shuttle car, which can transport 12 tons of coal at a time. The coal is sent on a conveyor belt outside the mine and the process continues over and over and over again far below the surface of the earth.

MURRAY: Where the damage is here, we're about 2,000 feet deep.

TUCHMAN: But the process had to stop for almost two days because of seismic activity that has shaken up the mine and made it too dangerous for rescue workers. The work to get to the miners originally began at a different point of the mine.

MURRAY: We had this cleaned up 310 feet. The machinery is still in there.

TUCHMAN: But another shift in the earth caused another partial collapse and the cleared area filled with coal again.

(on camera): Frankly, it's very eerie standing here knowing that 2,000 feet behind me, and maybe less, are the six trapped miners. It's cold. It's dark. It's foreboding. A claustrophobic could never cut it here. There is a steady wind blowing. The ceilings are low. We're 30 minutes away from the nearest exit.

In normal times, it's very stressful. But right now there's a lot of tension. Nevertheless the workers here -- the rescue workers, the people who normally work in the mine are calm because they have a job to do.

(voice-over): And take a look at what happens to our camera shot while we're in the mine. We hear a boom that shakes the mine and startles the workers, and especially us. The owner says it's another seismic event. One more and we evacuate.

MURRAY: When the coal breaks away from the rib and just kind of lays there, we call that sloughage (ph).

TUCHMAN: But there are no more. We do see other damage to the mine walls caused by the initial collapse, but it's the feverish work to rescue six men dead or alive that stays in our minds.

MURRAY: This rubble could extend -- well, we know it goes 300 feet because we were up there. But it may go another 100 feet and stop and we can just walk up to the men or they may be right there.

TUCHMAN: Wishful thinking, perhaps, but it's keeping these rescue workers going.

Gary Tuchman, CNN, in the Crandall Canyon Mine, Utah.


CHETRY: So right now after some stopping and starting, the rescue effort is full on again. There are two things going on. There is an overhead drill that's going full bore in an attempt to reach the spot where the miners are trapped. That drill is opening up a two- inch hole that will allow search teams to snake a camera into the mine and look for signs of life. That's not the only hole they are drilling.

Now we got an update from mine owner Bob Murray. Let's listen.


MURRAY: There's a second borehole being drilled that I think it is important that your listeners know that hole is eight and five inches in diameter. And it will be down sometime tomorrow. Through those two boreholes, we can provide sustenance, communication, ventilation, anything that the miners need if they are alive and survive the concussion of this seismic event that caused the collapse.

The drilling and the mining underground that we just left has progressed about 180 feet in the last day. We are about 1,600 feet from the miners. And I estimate in my own judgment that it will take about a week to get to them.


CHETRY: So there you have Bob Murray still insisting that...

ROBERTS: Still insisting that...

CHETRY: ... it was a seismic event.

ROBERTS: ... it was an earthquake, yes, that caused this whole thing. The seismologists disagree with him. We are also beginning to learn the names and the faces of the men trapped inside the mine. CNN has confirmed the names of two of them, 58-year-old Kerry Allred, who has been a miner for 30 years, and 41-year-old Manuel Sanchez, a 17- year veteran of coal mines in Utah, Wyoming, and Colorado.

Nate Carlisle, a reporter for The Salt Lake Tribune who has covered this story from day one, says he has learned about all six trapped miners.


NATE CARLISLE, REPORTER, THE SALT LAKE TRIBUNE: Don Erickson is a long-time or life-long resident of this area. one person I talked to who worked with him years ago at an auto wrecker says that if Don Erickson is still alive, that the other miners are in good hands because Don Erickson will take care of them.

ROBERTS: And another fellow who you have identified in your story is Brandon Phillips, comes from a family of miners?

CARLISLE: He does, as a lot of families do in this area, it's multi-generational. And it's believed he lost a relative about 20 years ago in another mine disaster in Utah that killed 20 or more people.

(END VIDEO CLIP) ROBERTS: Carlisle says it is difficult to find out more information about the miners because the mine owner has asked their family members not to talk to the media -- Kiran.

CHETRY: Well, a new alert to states and a new theory about what may have caused the bridge collapse in Minneapolis. The NTSB is looking at a possible design flaw in the steel plates that connects the beams of the super-structure, the entire bridge. State inspectors are not yet sure why that flaw would cause the collapse after 40 years of use. They are looking at the recent construction and the heavy equipment used there.

But the NTSB issued its first warning late last night, asking states to be mindful of extra weight that construction crews can place on bridges, especially those with similar designs around the country.

ROBERTS: Other headlines new this morning, an earthquake overnight in the Los Angeles area. Preliminary reports say it registered 4.5. The epicenter was about 30 miles northwest of the L.A. Civic Center. So far no reports of anyone hurt or major damage. Forecasters are watching a new tropical storm out in the Pacific Ocean. Tropical Storm Flossie is about halfway between Mexico and Hawaii. Flossie is the sixth named storm of the Pacific hurricane season.

Pakistani President Pervez Musharraf announced this morning he will not declare a state of emergency. That ends two days of intense talks about the possibility of taking extreme measures to deal with security in Pakistan. Musharraf also backed out of a summit in Afghanistan. He was to meet with President Hamid Karzai today.

President Bush is heading for his parents' home in Kennebunkport, Maine, today. He is to meet with the French President Sarkozy on Saturday. Sarkozy is vacationing in New Hampshire, not too far away. The White House disclosed yesterday that the president was diagnosed and treated for Lyme disease last summer.

There is a new home run record. Again, Barry Bonds hit another home run last night. But this time, there was a lot less fanfare for homer number 757. With the pressure off, Bonds homered in the first inning, splashing into the San Francisco Bay beyond the right field fence. It takes you forever to get to 756 and then every night after that you are going to hit a home run.

CHETRY: The pressure is off now. What does he have to worry about?

Well, it's time to check in with our AMERICAN MORNING team of correspondent for some other stories new this morning. New York City slowly getting back on track after a huge storm shut down the nation's largest subway system. AMERICAN MORNING's Alina Cho is outside right now with us at the Columbus Circle station.

And there are still some delays going on within the system.

ALINA CHO, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's absolutely right, Kiran. There is some good news and some bad news to report. The good news, most of the subway lines are up and running. The bad news, some of the lines are reporting extensive delays. So if you live in this area, it might be a good idea to give yourself extra time on your morning commute.

Now what caused all of this? Really, a weather catastrophe. A weather trifecta, if you will. A blast of rain that dumped three inches in just an hour on New York City. Then a tornado, a rare one in the Brooklyn area. And finally, that oppressive heat and humidity which really put a strain on the power grid.

Add all of that together and it was simply too much for the city's large and aging subway system.


SEN. CHARLES SCHUMER (D), NEW YORK: This is a system that's close to 100 years old. It was an engineering marvel when it was built. But of course, all of these things deteriorate and, you know, to do them minute-to-minute, day-to-day, month-to-month maintenance is probably the number one job of any system that carries so many millions of people. And things fall down on the job.


CHO: And that was New York's senior senator, Charles Schumer, earlier on AMERICAN MORNING. Schumer said the subways fail simply too often and he calls them the life blood of New York. In fact, this has happened three times in just seven months. And, Kiran, though it is an absolutely beautiful day here in New York City today, brace yourself, because more bad weather is expected late tonight into tomorrow morning.

CHETRY: Alina, you are right. Hopefully they will be able to figure out what they are going to do about that so we don't see a repeat of yesterday. Alina Cho, thanks so much.


CHETRY: Well, Blockbuster takes movie rentals to the next level by offering up movie downloads online. Ali Velshi is here with that. Is it part of the ongoing back-and-forth with Netflix and Blockbuster?

ALI VELSHI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: That's right, Kiran. In fact, you almost can write off what Blockbuster is doing here because Blockbuster has been so late to the game on so many things about new technology, they are buying a company called MovieLink. They might or might not integrate it with their entire system until a little bit later.

But this is already happening. This is the MovieLink site. The idea is you download a movie to your computer. And if you feel connecting your computer to your TV, that's what can happen. Here is how it works. You rent the movie starting at $1.99. You download it. You then have that movie for 30 days. You can take your laptop on the plane and watch it. Once you start watching it, you have got a 24- hour period in which to watch it.

Others are doing this already. Netflix does it. I just tried a system from Amazon called Unbox. In fact, this new movie, "The Bourne Ultimatum," I wanted to see the lead-ups to it, so "The Bourne Supremacy," I checked this out, I watched it on Unbox. It is $3.99 from Amazon's Unbox. It's $2.99 on MovieLink, which is what Blockbuster has bought.

But with all the pressure from video-on-demand and iTunes and different ways to get movies, Blockbuster once again showing up a bit late to the party. But I guess showing up late is better than not showing up at all -- Kiran.

CHETRY: In some cases, I guess so. Ali, thank you -- John.

ROBERTS: On the terror watch now as the Transportation Security Administration gets ready to announce new guidelines for screening air travelers. Out homeland security correspondent Jeanne Meserve breaks it all down for us, live from our Washington bureau. How does the plan work, Jeanne?

JEANNE MESERVE, CNN HOMELAND SECURITY CORRESPONDENT: Well, John, you know the government gets a lot of grief every time it stops a grandmother, for instance, from getting on an airplane because they say that the name is on a terror watch list. The Transportation Security Administration has blamed the problem on the fact that airlines, not the government, have been checking passenger information against government watch lists. Officials say that some of the airlines simply don't do a good job of it.

Today sources say Secretary Chertoff is going to announce plans to have TSA take over that function with testing of the program to begin this fall. The government has spent millions of dollars trying to launch programs like this in the past. They've never gotten off the ground because of objections from privacy advocates. The government has taken a loft heat for it. Homeland Security hoping it has got it right this time.

ROBERTS: And, Jeanne, what about international travelers? I think back to a couple of weeks ago and there was that flight from LAX to London had to land in New York because there was a suspicious passenger onboard. What are they going to do about that?

MESERVE: And they are even more concerned about international flights, flights often from Europe that have been turned around or diverted to places like Bangor, Maine, because after takeoff it is discovered there is someone who might be of concern onboard. DHS hoping those embarrassing events are going to be a thing of the past too. According to sources, it is going to be requiring that air carriers provide manifest information about passengers, either 30 minutes before international flights take off or alternatively as each passenger checks in for a flight.

Previously the government didn't get that information to until the planes were in the air. This way they have more time to check out the names and hopefully prevent those diversions from having to take place.

ROBERTS: All right. Well, let's hope it works. Jeanne Meserve for us live in Washington this morning, Jeanne, thanks.

CHETRY: More now on a story that we first brought you earlier this week. We have heard the word bisphenol A used a lot this week because of after months of debate, a federal panel of scientists concluded that a chemical in plastic could pose some risk to the brain development of babies and children but not adults. CNN chief medical correspondent Dr. Sanjay Gupta has been following this for us. He joins us live with more.

There are a lot of activist groups and environmentalists that were hoping to get an even more conclusive and more of a warning out there. This panel didn't go that far but didn't say that it is without danger.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Yes. It is interesting. We actually expected more conclusive remarks from this advisory panel as well. Didn't get it here. They say more studies are needed. But they did express, as you mentioned, some concerns specifically regarding neural and behavioral problems, especially in infants and unborn children as well.

We are talking about bisphenol A, it's a compound, it is found in just about everything. If you measure yourself right now, there is a good chance that you have some of this compound in your body as well.

One of the most alarming places people talked about was in baby bottles. And the concern that it could actually leech out of the baby bottles and possibly get into (INAUDIBLE) the baby or the young child drinking the milk. It's in polycarbonate plastic. And that's the type, you know, that is watercoolers, that's all sorts of different substances. The baby bottles that you have here, the concern is because it has such high production volume, because it just has such widespread exposure that it could cause certain problems, including hormonal problems, possibly even cancers as well.

But again, this advisory panel saying, look, there's some concern about this, neural, behavioral problems, we need more studies.

CHETRY: Right. Let me just ask you this. A lot of people have been saying, switch to glass, or there are some organic food stores that do sell these BornFree brands that don't have this in it. For your own little kids, would you switch to glass or do you think for now plastic is OK?

GUPTA: Well, you know, I -- we do use actually I think one of the bottles that you are showing there on the table. We have been using it for some time. A couple of things that we had heard and we sort of practice is we don't microwave within the bottle. And we also don't put those in the dishwasher. The panel came out and some of the recommendations said that those two processes, actually heating it up in those ways, could actually advance that whole leeching process, as far as leeching that bisphenol A compound into the milk. But there are a lot of environmental groups that are saying yes, it is time to switch to glass bottles. In fact, there is a class action lawsuit that's going to be filed against several makers of baby bottles. They also point out a particular substance called polypropylene, as opposed to polycarbonate, that may be too much to remember at this hour of the morning, but polypropylene less likely to actually have the bisphenol A leech out. That's a type of plastic, if you want to stick with plastic.

CHETRY: Right. I got you. So some practical advice, just try to avoid, you know, to err on the side of caution, microwaving or throwing these bottles in a dishwasher if you are using plastic. Good advice. And they also say throw them out. Like this one started -- it looks like the plastic is starting to wear away. Maybe it is time to throw them out and replace them when they start to show wear and tear, just like we are supposed to do with our Teflon.

GUPTA: That's right, or when they get cloudy. That was another -- one of the other things that was pointed out as well. Another time to maybe throw it away.

CHETRY: I have got a lot of throwing out to do this morning. I can tell. All right. Sanjay Gupta, great to see you, as always, thanks.

A reminded, by the way, if you have questions for Dr. Gupta, send them to his mailbag at Drop us an e-mail. Sanjay will be answering your questions a little later in the hour.

ROBERTS: Well, the warnings about tainted seafood from China have been out there for weeks now. So could that seafood still be making it on to your dinner plate? An investigation that you are going to want to hear about coming up next on AMERICAN MORNING.


ROBERTS: Welcome back to the most news in the morning here on CNN. Is potentially tainted fish and seafood from China making its way to your dinner plate? Yes, according to an investigation by the Associated Press. This despite an import alert put in place by the Food and Drug Administration. Carl Nielsen (ph) is a retired consumer safety officer for the FDA. He joins us now live from Washington.

Mr. Nielsen, the study by the Associated Press found that at least, at least a million pounds of suspect Chinese seafood made it to shelves and dinner plates despite this order by the FDA that all shipments be screened for banned drugs or chemicals. How would that happen?

CARL NIELSEN, FMR. FDA CONSUMER SAFETY OFFICER: Yes, John. It is a good example of the difficulties of the agency is -- it has been put in. Fundamentally, there has not been substantive changes in the FDA operation since the NAFTA agreements. The globalization has caused a tremendous volume. The information technology systems, management systems, I mean, human resources just are not there to execute. ROBERTS: Right. The AP found that one in four shipments is getting through the system un-inspected. Is the system broken?

NIELSEN: Absolutely, in my opinion. It does not surprise me.

ROBERTS: How potentially dangerous is this seafood? We have heard some pretty horrific stories about catfish that are raised in fecal-infected pools. They are given antibiotics to get rid of infections that they may have contracted as they are growing up. We have heard about -- similar things about shrimp and other forms of seafood.

I mean, how dangerous could this stuff be once it gets on the table?

NIELSEN: Well, I think the real question is, do we know how dangerous it is as a consumer? And I think what the real issue has to be is that currently, the consumer has to be really aware of what the issues are. The danger -- the FDA will evaluate and has stated there's no immediate danger. But there are long-term possible effects.

The consumer -- as a consumer, though, we all have to use our noses. We have to be practical in our approach.

ROBERTS: Yes. But when you say, use your nose, it is possible to smell a fish and tell when it is off, but not possible to smell a fish and tell if antibiotics or some other sort of banned chemical has been used.

NIELSEN: Absolutely. I totally agree with you.

ROBERTS: So what is a consumer to do?

NIELSEN: Absolutely. And what the consumer has to do is also put some pressure on the agency and has to mobilize. Because the reality is that the FDA just does not know that much about the source of these products.

ROBERTS: Right. And is the FDA even the agency that should be looking after this? I mean, they are the ones that approve our drugs. Should maybe the Department of Agriculture be the ones responsible for screening these imports?

NIELSEN: No. I actually think it should be FDA. What has to be done, though, the oversight does have to be enhanced. There's too much overlap in the FDA as it relates to other products. Just with the tissue residues as it relates to the antibiotics, that requires an assessment by the scientists, which also relates to the drug issue.

ROBERTS: The argument goes on. And apparently, nothing getting done. Carl Nielsen, former FDA. Thanks very much for being with us. Appreciate your sharing your comments.

NIELSEN: Thank you. CHETRY: We have been following the news in Newark, New Jersey. The murders of three college students who rose up from a violent neighborhood, were doing great things, headed to college. We are going to talk to their friends coming up and see what they think Newark can do to stem the tide of violence, ahead on AMERICAN MORNING.


ROBERTS: Twenty-five minutes after the hour. Deadly floods in Vietnam to report to you today. At least 43 people have been killed. Thousands are stranded without food in the central part of that country. The army is now using high-speed boats to deliver supplies to people who are stranded.

Looking to make a difference when disaster strikes, CNN wants to give you the power to help. Find out how you can impact your world. Go to

CHETRY: Well, this morning, Brooklyn is picking up the pieces literally after what might have been the first tornado to hit there in almost 120 years. We have some pictures for you to show you. This is a neighborhood that could look like a place in Tornado Alley in middle part of the country. But instead it is one of the boroughs of New York City. They were really taken by surprise.

We have cars crushed by trees. Sidewalks ripped up. Meteorologists were saying that the tornado packed winds of 135 miles an hour. It was enough to snap 100-year-old trees in half. Some of them just littering the streets. The Red Cross saying at least 30 families had to take shelter in an elementary school in the Bay Ridge area.

ROBERTS: The first time that a tornado has touched down in Brooklyn since when? It like 1880-something, isn't it?

CHETRY: Yes, they said it was like 1889...

ROBERTS: Unbelievable.

CHETRY: ... the last time that they got them in that 135-mile- per-hour winds, doing a lot of damage in that borough.

ROBERTS: Well, coming up in our next half-hour here on AMERICAN MORNING, some stories that you can't miss. A quick thinking 9-year- old saved his dad and probably his own life in a big rig. What happened after the little boy jumped behind the wheel of this semi?

CHETRY: We are going to tell you all about it. We are going to hear from that little -- smart-thinking little 9-year-old coming up ahead...

ROBERTS: And very brave, too, yes.


(COMMERCIAL BREAK) CHETRY: There's a look from right outside of our Time Warner studios here at Columbus Circle in the heart of Manhattan. Much calmer scene than yesterday. We see the bright sunshine. Boy, yesterday, quite a mess after that rainstorm forced people out from the subway after it shut down. People lined up along that area trying to get taxis or buses, anything.

And we are still having some problems today. A couple of the lines are running with extensive delays. Some of them actually are being diverted due to street closures, and that's affecting buses as well. But things getting relatively back to normal compared to yesterday here in the Big Apple.

And welcome back once again. It is Thursday, August 9th, I'm Kiran Chetry.

ROBERTS: Good morning to you. I'm John Roberts. Thanks for being with us.

We begin in Utah with progress in the search for six trapped miners. The first pictures from inside the collapsed mine. Take a look here at CNN crew that went through miles into the mine last night. They were side-by-side with rescuers trying to dig through a mountain of coal to reach the trapped men. Those rescuers still have several hundred feet to go, though.

Meantime, there's progress outside of the mine, in the race to drill two small holes down to the men. That operation could be complete by this afternoon, at least the two-inch hole. It will take longer to drill the larger hole which is almost nine inches across. Those holes would allow search teams to snake a camera down into the mine and send food down if those miners are still alive.

A little bit earlier on AMERICAN MORNING we spoke to the man in charge of the mine. The CEO, Bob Murray, who you have seen on television a lot the past couple of days. Towards the end of interview we were talking about the process of retreat mining, which is where they pull out the remaining coal leftover from the initial mining operation, and allows the roof to collapse behind it. Some people say it is a very dangerous form of mining.

Bob Murray told me, he said his mine was in accordance with all mining plans and said, quote, "They have found no violations". To which I thought it was incumbent to respond since January of 2004, in fact, that mine has been cited for 300 alleged safety violations, including more than 100 that have been found to be significant and substantial. Well, as were going off the air with him Mr. Murray took exception to that and wanted to respond. So we thought we would give him an opportunity. Here is his response.


BOB MURRAY, PRES., CEO, MURRAY ENERGY: You have drawn and are attempting to draw an erroneous conclusion for the American public. Just recently, I won the CEO leadership award from International Society of Mine Safety Professionals, as the top CEO in the world in mining safety.

Secondly, all of our mining plans were approved by the federal Mine Safety and Health Administration, and our mine is in compliance with all laws, at the time of the accident.

Thirdly, I have been in business on my own for 20 years. And it has been about 19 years since we had a serious accident. We have one of the best safety records in the industry. And you cannot cite statistics you do not understand to try to paint a picture that this mine was not safe. This is one of the safest mines in America.

I have been doing this for 50 years. If it wasn't one of the safest, I wouldn't be operating it, John.


ROBERTS: Certainly, it was not our intent to point out that the mine was not safe. We just wanted to point out that when he says that they have found no violations, indeed there had been 300 violations for alleged safety infractions since January, 2004 -- Kiran.

CHETRY: Well, New York City getting back on track after a literal storm of the century. Including a tornado in Brooklyn. Reportedly, the first seen in nearly 120 years. The National Weather Service says an EF-2 twister touched down in Bay Ridge, Brooklyn, yesterday. Tearing off rooftops and ripping trees right off the city blocks.


SUSAN PILLAR, BROOKLYN RESIDENT: We were shocked, you know, because that tree was huge and we thought, you know, it must have been a tornado because we have never seen damage like this before. We have had some awful storms here, but nothing like this.


CHETRY: You can see right behind her, the trees scattered all through the streets. It was part of the quick, but very intense storm that really paralyzed this city. The subway system a mess. Shut down. Drivers were rerouted as streets were closed and many, many commuters were stranded.

The second such commuter meltdown in a month. New York City transit says some subway this morning are still running with extensive delays. New York's governor said the pumps that protect the tunnels from flooding may need a serious overhaul. They've given the organization in charge 30 days to review that and try to come up with some answers.

Meantime, turning to a city west of New York. Newark, New Jersey. Police say they could issue an arrest warrant as soon as today for a suspect in the execution-style murders of three college students you. Eighteen-year-old Terrence Aeriel, and two friends, were lined up, shot on a school yard on a playground there Saturday night.

Malik El-Amin, his son Malik, and Brianna Jolley, all knew Terrence Aeriel, and they join us this morning from Newark.

Thanks to all of you for being with us.


CHETRY: Hopefully, some good news that they are able to find out who was behind this heinous crime responsible for the death of your friend, Terrence.

Brianna, tell us what kind of person -- what was Terrence like?

BRIANNA JOLLEY, KNEW TERRENCE AERIEL: Just a very good spirited person, always had a cheerful outlook on life. And was very, like, never judgmental about anyone in the center. He was just a real good person to be around. It is just a sad thing that we had to lose him so young.

CHETRY: How's this affected the community and your friends, Brianna?

JOLLEY: A lot of people are hurt by it. I know the people in the center, it is just so -- we are still in shock. Even though it is a couple days later, we are still in shock. The community has had enough. We are trying to find some kind of solution to this problem.

CHETRY: And Malik, you also knew Terrance for seven years. Did you also know his sister, she's the soul survivor of that attack, who is still in intensive care?

MALIK EL-AMIN, JR., KNEW TERRENCE AERIAL: No, I didn't know his sister. I just knew Terrence because he came to the center a lot. His sister, I just know her from once, we went to the prom. That was about it.

CHETRY: When you talk about the center -- let's ask your dad. This was -- you are the director of this teen program group. A lot of people have said that you have to give teenagers a place to go, something to occupy their time in a positive way to avoid falling into some of the drugs and violence that we have seen in Newark. What's that program like, Malik.

MALIK EL-AMIN, SR., TEEN CENTER DIRECTOR: It is just a unique program. I have been working here for almost 14 years now. Just some of the things we do is unique compared to other programs. One of the things, you know, we give stipends out. The students are on a point- card system. So they receive points for everything they do. Or we take points for things they are not supposed to do. They receive a bi- weekly stipend. You know, so it's just a unique program.

CHETRY: Right, a positive reinforcement.

EL-AMIN, SR.: Yes, yes. We are in collaboration with Seton Hall University. Seton Hall University donated 50 wireless laptop computers. They furnished our computer room. So, we just have a unique program here. CHETRY: You know, Malik, you are doing a lot of good things. It doesn't seem to be that there's enough of that, apparently, in Newark. What do you think is behind the rise in murders we have seen in Newark, New Jersey?

EL-AMIN, SR.: Well, one thing I see is that we really need parents to really get involved and stand up and be responsible, and take charge of their children. The parents must get involved and take charge of the children again. They have to do it.

I had seen the other day that, you know, a lot of people attacking the (INAUDIBLE) administrator, Corey Booker, attacking police officers. I don't think that's the avenue there. I mean, you see kids all around here in the community. And they are looking for leaders. The leaders start at home with their parents.

CHETRY: Let me ask your son about that. Because the scary thing was Terrance was not involved in drugs. He was a smart kid, accepted into college, much like yourself. Do you fear for your own safety and the safety of your friends in your city? Even when you are not looking for trouble?

EL-AMIN, JR.: I do sometimes. You can find violence almost everywhere, every street corner. Even outside your own house. I said to my friends, as well, because violence is a bad thing. I'm a good student. He was a good student. It shouldn't happen to people like this. I should happen to people that are bad, themselves.

CHETRY: A lot of people are thinking about you guys. Our thoughts are with you. Hopefully they will be able to get to the bottom of this murder. I know it does not make it's easier for all of you. Hopefully the people who did this will be brought to justice.

Thanks for joining us today, father and son, Malik and Malik El- Amin, and Brianna Jolley, friends of Terrence.

EL-AMIN, SR.: Thank you.

EL-AMIN, JR.: Thank you.

JOLLEY: Thank you.

CHETRY: Thanks for talking with us.

ROBERTS: It's 38 minutes after the hour. A quick thinking nine- year-old saved his father and probably himself by jumping behind the wheel of a semi truck. Matthew Lovo, Junior, was riding with his father when the father passed out behind the wheel.


MATTHEW LOVO, JR., GOT BEHIND WHEEL OF SEMI TRUCK: He made a weird noise and fell down right here. I'm like -- dad, are you joking? He wouldn't say anything. So, I smacked him and I'm like -- then he wasn't. I jumped over here. And this guy on the radio said, turn the key off. MATTHEW LOVO, SR., PASSED OUT WHILE DRIVING: And he had the foresight to unlock his seat belt, slap me in the face because he thought I was joking at first. Noticed I wasn't going to wake up. Then grabbed the CB and asked for help. Then grabbed the steering wheel, then shut the truck off.

LOVO, JR.: I just did the stuff -- I thought of it, too. I'm like -- I should do what my dad does.


ROBERTS: Well, before Mattie took the wheel the truck had veered into oncoming traffic, glanced off of a light pole. Mattie managed to steered it back into the correct lane. Another driver caught the truck -- and like they do in those old Western movies, jumping on the stage coach -- jumped in and hit the brakes to bring it to a complete stop without anyone getting hurt.

ROBERTS: Well, it's a fall that sends chills up your spine. Remember this not too long ago at X Games in California? Perfect 720. Nails it. Then coming up the high half pipe. Look out! Boom! Jake Brown, 45 feet. But he got up, walked away from it. Has a couple of injuries including a fractured wrist and fractured vertebrae.

He will be joining us in the next few minutes to tell us what it was like to take that ride. Stay with us. We'll be right back.


ROBERTS: We have been talking about President Bush's revelation about his health. His spokesman disclosing the president was diagnosed with Lyme disease last summer.

CHETRY: It's a story we are already getting a lot of e-mails about. We are reaching into Dr. Gupta's mailbag. Sanjay joins us from Atlanta.

So, it's not just falling off the bike that was hurting the president. Apparently, he got Lyme disease from biking. Apparently, he got it on his lower leg.

How was it treated?

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, CNN CHIEF MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Well, if you catch it early, if you catch it at all, really, treated with antibiotics. It is an infection. You treat it with a three-week course of antibiotics. The president's case, we hear it was early, and it was localized. It is pretty much a rash probably. Then didn't spread throughout the rest of his body.

If you treat it early you get a 95 percent cure rate. Pretty much with Lyme disease. Having said that, it is interesting, there's a lot of studies out there. Saying that about 15 percent of people even after they have been treated and get the appropriate treatment, still develop some complaints of muscle aches, joint pains, and fatigue. It is a little bit harder to say whether it is due to the Lyme disease or not. It's hard to say whether the president will develop that. That's out there as well to consider.

ROBERTS: Another controversial topic this week, Sanjay, whether or not the videos for toddlers have a detrimental effect on them. Michael from Charlotte, North Carolina, writes, quote, "We have a grandchild with slow speech development. Baby Einstein," those videotapes, "were a staple in her life. Is there a connection?"

GUPTA: It is going to be very hard to say if there is a connection, Michael, between that. The specific study you are talking about, an interesting one. Looking at children around the age of 16 months and their television viewing habits. They're saying for every hour of television or DVD or other video they watch, they had six to eight fewer words of vocabulary. You know, for every hour they watch. That's pretty significant, especially at a time when language is developing.

With Baby Einstein, in particular, if you go to their website, talk to the manufacturers, they say their product is designed to entertain and not necessarily educate but entertain more than anything else. For a sort of benchmark about -- 15 to 18 months kids should be saying a lot of single words. By the time they are about 24 months, they should start speaking in phrases.

CHETRY: Our last question comes from Beth in Alabama.

"I recently found out I'm pregnant" Congratulations, by the way, Beth. "How can I be sure that the food that I'm eating is safe for me and my baby when more food gets recalled everyday, botulism, e. Coli, metals in fish, etc cetera?"

A lot of people are concerned about that, Sanjay.

GUPTA: I have a six-month-old. We were recently very concerned about that as well. There are a few things to keep in mind. Certainly when you are pregnant, your metabolism is different. So you are going to be much more susceptible, if you will, to getting nauseated and vomiting, from certain foods or food-borne illnesses. You can quite sick from that, and your child could get sick as well. So important to keep in mind.

There are a couple of good rules of thumb. I think you have to pay more attention to this when you are pregnant. You really have to make sure all of your food is completely cooked, through and through. Any kind of meat, obviously, you want to check your canned goods as well. When it comes to fish, you do -- you do have to limit your fish. There is enough evidence now to talk about mercury. Especially in the larger fish that pregnant women need to watch that and limit the amount of fish they are taking in.

ROBERTS: Good tips, Sanjay Gupta. Thank you very much.

GUPTA: Thank you.

ROBERTS: If you have questions about the medical stories we covered, go to and e-mail us your questions. Sanjay opens up the mailbag each Thursday here at AMERICAN MORNING. CNN "Newsroom" just minutes away. Tony Harris at the CNN Center with a look at what's ahead.

Hey, Tony.

TONY HARRIS, CNN ANCHOR, CNN NEWSROOM: Hey, John, good morning to you.

Utah mine collapse: Obviously topping the NEWSROOM rundown for you this morning. Crews drilling towards six trapped miners. The small holes will let them communicate with the men -- if they are still alive.

Execution-style killings in a Newark school yard. Police may issue an arrest warrant for a suspect today.

On-the-job training when a truck driver blacks out, his nine- year-old son takes the wheel of the loaded big rig. Turns out OK. Heidi is with me in the NEWSROOM. Just minutes away, top of the hour, right here on CNN.

John, back to you.

ROBERTS: Tony, thanks. We will see you soon.

Hey, remember this fall, a skateboarder loses control during a stunt and plunges 45 feet. Talk about a rad move. He walked away from it, though. And this morning he's here with us. We will talk to Jake, coming up next.

G'day, Mate.


ROBERTS: New music this morning from the artist Go Big, called "Shoes Off, Lights Out". That's actually music by Danny Way, who is a pro-skater, good friend of Jake Brown's. Wrote the song for the incredible fall that Jake Brown took the other day at the X Games in California.

CHETRY: Yes, because it really was, shoes off, lights off for Jake and a death defying spill of a lifetime. He is a professional skateboarder. Jake Brown, he landed the world's first 720-degree spin, by the way, on the mega ramp. Then he lost his board on the way down, and fell nearly five stories.

ROBERTS: He lost his shoes, too. They kicked off about 40 feet. Amazingly he walked off the ramp. He had some injuries, though. Jake Brown is with us now from Los Angeles.

Good morning, Jake. How are you doing today?

JAKE BROWN, PROFESSIONAL SKATE BOARDER: Good morning. Not bad. A little bit tired.

ROBERTS: Tell us about that jump. Every time you look at that, it hurts just looking at it. You landed the 720. What went wrong after that?

BROWN: Yeah, I was a little off balance. I came down, a little towards the left of the landing. I wanted to go to the right. I came across to the right. And came back to the left and the G force pushed me to the board, and then I just catapulted. You can see.

CHETRY: Right.

BROWN: To the flat board, and then, shoes off, lights out, right there.


CHETRY: Jake it looks -- you obviously were trying your best, as you were coming down, you see your legs flailing. You were trying to do what you to make it -- I guess, the best fall possible. What was going through your mind when you were falling that far?

BROWN: I don't know. I just wanted basically to prevent as much injury as possible. Just the way I fell and I think fell pretty much the best I could for the situation.

CHETRY: You really did. What are your injuries?

BROWN: Broken wrist. I have are a fractured vertebrae, which I'm not too sure the extent of that. It seems pretty -- like it is just going to heal in a couple of weeks, though. Yeah. Whiplash is the main thing right now.

ROBERTS: Oh, we could tell. I mean, the way -- how hard you came down, and you just bounced like a rag doll on the wood there. When you were at the top -- because when you got out of shape was when you were still going up. You went up even higher before you started looking down and figuring out where you were going. When you were looking down, what went through your mind?

BROWN: Just realizing that I was going to be landing on the very flat, which means there's nothing to catch your fall. And it is a long way. I didn't realize it was 45 feet. Yeah.

CHETRY: When you look back -- when you look back at the pictures -- you were out cold there for a while. What's it look like to you when you see it?

BROWN: It looks like I took it pretty well. The shoes flying off looks pretty wild. (LAUGHTER)

BROWN: I think it just adds a little icing to the cake.

ROBERTS: The commentator was making mention of that as well. Do you have any hesitation of getting back out there on the mega ramp?

BROWN: No. I will be back. I'm just waiting. I want my body to be 100 percent so I can definitely come back properly.

CHETRY: You took second place in that event, anyway.


CHETRY: Congratulations.

ROBERTS: And the crash for ages, as well.

Jake brown, thanks for being with us. Appreciate you coming in. Glad to see you are doing all right.

BROWN: Thanks for having me. I just thank Monster Energy, Boone (ph) Skateboard, Crew Clothing, and Adidas Shoes. Thank you.

CHETRY: He got his endorsements in, as well.

ROBERTS: You didn't get a chance to do that after the competition. There's his chance.

CHETRY: We are going to take a quick break. When we come back, we will have much more on AMERICAN MORNING.


CHETRY: Time now for another "CNN Hero". These are people making a difference in their communities. Today, it is a man fighting to protect some of the world's greatest creatures. Eugene Rutagarama is today's "CNN Hero".


EUGENE RUTAGARAMA, PARK RANGER: When you approach a group of gorillas, the first feeling that you are approaching a relative, a human being.

In this region we have been able to bring conservationists from the three governments together to sign an agreement to protect these mountain gorillas.

Having rangers to cover the park with their patrol means that we keep the poaching at the lowest level, but the poaching is still there.

My name is Eugene Rutagarama. My work is to protect mountain gorillas in their habitat.

When I came back from Burundi, Rwanda was devastated by the genocide. You would see the bodies of dead people, thousands of people. The whole country had to resume from scratch.

My attention went to the national parks. If these parks were not protected it means that we have lost the mountain gorillas which is a hobby for many tourists. They bring foreign currency for this country, which has to conserve these parks.

Gorillas can't really do much if a human being has decided to decimate or to kill the gorillas. They need to be defended, they need to be protected by human beings.



ROBERTS: Hey, just before we go, a big shout out to my former colleagues at White House press corps, at Andrews Air Force this base, watching us. Have fun in Kennebunkport. And thanks so much for joining us on this AMERICAN MORNING.

CHETRY: CNN Newsroom with Tony Harris and Heidi Collins begins now.