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CNN 10

Rebuilding of West, Texas; Demonstration of Recovering Things from Deep Waters; Car on Empire State Building`s Roof

Aired April 18, 2014 - 04:00   ET


CARL AZUZ, CNN ANCHOR: It`s April, 18, Good Friday for millions of people worldwide. Welcome to CNN STUDENT NEWS. Ten minutes of commercial-free current events. Our first story today takes us to a Texas town named West. Yesterday was exactly one year after an enormous explosion destroyed a fertilizer plant there.

That gives you a sense of how powerful it was. It started with the fire, and while first responders were fighting it, the explosion occurred. 15 people were killed. The accident is still under investigation, but some effects on the landscape remain. 120 homes were destroyed. Another 200 were damaged. The blast registered as a magnitude 2.1 earthquake, shaking houses 50 miles away. In a town of about 2800 people, everyone in West was affected in some way. But residents have started to rebuild. The process described as being brick by brick, shingle by shingle, prayer by prayer.


UNIDENTIFIED MALE: In West it is a new day. Street by street, block by block, house by house, the town`s mayor Tommy Muska likes what he sees.

TOMMY MUSKA, WEST, TEXAS MAYOR: It`s a smile on my face. And we lived with dumpsters for a while. Dumpsters is progress. That humming is progress.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The town recently hired the same economic development consultants who helped New Orleans and Galveston start over after Hurricanes Katrina and Ike. And for the first time since the town`s darkest day last year, folks who live here are beginning to ask a painful question: should a new fertilizer plant be built in West?

MUSKA: That`s a hard pill. That`s going to be a hard pill to swallow for some people.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: With the West plant gone, the mayor says farmers must travel up to 30 miles away to get the fertilizer they need.

MUSKA: You know, it`s a needed industry. Somewhere in this area. Is it right here in West? I don`t know. Will it be zoned where people won`t build around it? Hopefully, hopefully we`ve learned the lesson there. Will it be safe? You bet!

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: While the mayor looks toward the future, he says he will never forget the 15 people who lost their lives that day. Mostly first responders, some of who`ve volunteered with him at the Fire Department. As we drove around town, Mayor Muska spotted the two flags flying over the ambulance sheet. Someone lowered them to half-staff after the explosion and they`ve remained that way ever since. The powerful symbol for the town.


AZUZ: Might seem hard to believe that in some areas what`s killing more Americans than violent crime and car crashes is the illegal drug heroin and other opiate narcotics. These are highly addictive drugs. They are easy to overdose on. They cause violent withdrawal symptoms. Despite that, there`s been a recent surge in heroin use in the U.S. Experts say one reason might be a nationwide crackdown on prescription painkillers. That`s leading addicts to turn to heroin. U.S. Attorney General Eric Holder says the issue seemed to sneak up on government officials. That it used to be thought of as a regional problem, until statistics showed it was nationwide. Holder`s been criticized, though, for pushing for more lenient treatment of non-violent drug offenders.

Tracking across the United States, today`s CNN STUDENT NEWS Roll Call starts in the Tar Hill state. We found some hawks soaring over Kernersville, North Carolina. They are online at Kernersville Middle School. (INAUDIBLE) from there will make (INAUDIBLE) in Laurel, Mississippi, the Mustangs of West Jones High School are watching from the Magnolia State. Mustangs will come up later today. And on the West Coast, in Bakersfield, California, we are shouting out the bull dogs. Great to see you at Golden Valley High School.

An underwater drone has spent hours at the bottom of the Indian Ocean scanning for wreckage of Malaysia Airlines Flight 370. It disappeared last month with 239 people aboard. No sign of it has been found. But if something is, getting a view at a place without light where any quick movements could stir up too much silt to see through will make a recovery very difficult.


MARTIN SAVIDGE, CNN CORRESPONDENT: It is a pretty amazing scene. We are inside of a submersible. Now, I`ll stress, not the kind of submersible that could go to the depths of, say, where they believe the airliner is, but it`s a perfect way to demonstrate some of the challenges as well as the abilities. If you take a look back here, let me just demonstrate how extremely tight these quarters are. Our pilot has to sit all the way directly behind us here in the dark, and he is the man in control. He is guiding this vessel. Meanwhile, the two of us up here, Phil Newton who is the expert on underwater recovery works. He`s been doing this for decades, is going to show us how manipulating this arm at this depth of retrieving a black box. It`s one we set out there, but it`s a way to give you a good example of just how even in this murk that you can begin to evaluate the tricky circumstances. So, Phil, if you would - we`ve already glassed it with the mechanical arm that you`ve got here, right?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: (INAUDIBLE) bring it over and get in the basket. Now it`s easy as one I suppose.

SAVIDGE: And so there you can see the black box is going to be retrieved by the claw. It`s no easy thing, just finding it in the gloom, but then the next step is it`s got to get into the basket because that is the way it`s going to be transported to the surface. And again, we point out to you at this step, it would be totally done. We are using very bright lighting up, there`d been - even then you can see the gloom. On top of that, manipulating this arm is not as easy as using your own hand to try to grab something under the water.


UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: Time for "The Shoutout." What was the tallest building in the world back in 1931? If you think you know it, shout it out! Was it, the Empire State Building, Chrysler Building, Willis Tower, or Eiffel Tower. You`ve got three seconds, go!

When the Empire State Building was completed in 1931, it was the tallest manmade structure on the planet. That`s your answer and that`s your shoutout.

So, no surprise there was a ton of publicity throughout its construction. And the Empire State Building has been used in a number of publicity stunts. Consider, if you will, a car company looking to generate a lot of buzz for a new model. So much so, that it`s willing to cut it in the pieces, carry it up 86 floors and rebuild it outdoors on an observation deck.


JEANNE MOOS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Down there on the street is where cars are supposed to be, not up here. 86 floors above New York City atop the Empire State Building. The out of place 2015 Ford Mustang had tourists wondering.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: The first thing was, how in the name of God did they get it up here?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Maybe by the copter?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: A helicopter or something?

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: I throw (INAUDIBLE) the helicopter.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: It basically rode the elevator just like you and I did.

MOOS: Not just like you or I. We wouldn`t have to get chopped up into pieces. The Mustang was cut up into five pieces, small enough to fit in the smallest Empire State Building elevator.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We only have an elevator that`s 36 inches wide.

MOOS: They actually built a mock elevator back at the Ford shop to make sure everything would fit. This wasn`t` the first time a Ford Mustang rode these elevators. Back in 1965 then newly introduced Mustang made the same trip and was photographed on the observatory. This latest elevation of the Mustang was meant to celebrate its 50th anniversary, and weather, though, didn`t cooperate. Snowflakes were flying as they assembled the Mustang high above Manhattan. It had to be done overnight when the observation deck was closed. And the car had to be put together in a six hour window. Here`s the process sped up. Despite the weather they met their deadline.

Ford wasn`t actually first to raise a car in new heights, maybe they got the idea from Chevy.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Chevrolet 1964.

MOOS: They did use a helicopter to lift car and model atop this sandstone tower in Utah.


AZUZ: Getting the car up there is certainly a tall order. With that Mustang, there was no room for horsing around, but if you have the drive, you can afford to stunt your building publicity. You`re really trying to give a brand a lift? Well, this can be an ingenious idea. But it`s a tight fit, and you must angle it just right. I`m Carl Azuz. My shift is up. We are hitting the road back in the driver seat on Monday.