this is bbc news. the headlines at 12. the british red cross hasjoined senior doctors in warning of a crisis in nhs accident and emergency departments in england. a former american army soldier has been arrested after five people were shot dead at fort lauderdale airport in florida. the megafires ravaging north american forests. how wildfires are becoming increasingly common and destructive. also in the next hour... the spiralling cost of repairing potholes in england and wales. councils predict the repair bill could reach £14 billion within two years. stay with us here on bbc news. in half an hour the click team is in las vegas at the massive electronics show ces. good afternoon and welcome to bbc news. nhs england has denied a claim
by the british red cross that hospitals and ambulance services are experiencing a "humanitarian crisis". the charity said extra spending on health and social care was needed to make the system sustainable. dozens of a&e departments were forced to divert ambulances to other hospitals last week. the royal college of emergency medicine says the system is on its knees but the department of health says it's investing more money to improve services. dan johnson reports. winter pressure on accident and emergency — nothing new, but the red cross now says the strain on hospitals in england amounts to a humanitarian crisis. the charity claims social—care cuts mean patients are sent home without the right support, so then they end up back in a&e. red cross volunteers support nhs staff and say they've seen patients sent home without clothes, some who don't receive the care they need to get washed, even some who've fallen and not been found for days. a&e staff recognise the problems too. i think the pressures on the nhs,
and especially in emergency care, are particularly intense at the moment. but what is more concerning is the number of patients who have been managed within four hours, and then the delays to admission into the hospital bed base, which unfortunately are very, very significant, and our staff are working under some pretty intolerable conditions at times trying to manage. and sometimes they just can't manage. figures from nhs england show that overflowing a&e departments had to close their doors to new patients more than 140 times over the last month. compare that with the same month in 2015 — it's up more than 60%. the suspicion is that it's a combination of the cuts that we've seen in social care, in community services run by the nhs, and very heavy pressure in general practice. so is the strain on the nhs costing lives? the death of two patients on emergency trolleys at worcestershire royal hospital are being investigated. one of them had waited
35 hours for a bed. the department of health says it's providing billions more every year to ease pressure. nhs england says plans are in place to deal with the extra demand. beds are actually not quite as full as they were this time last year, but everyone in the health service knows things could get worse before they get better. dan johnson, bbc news. nhs england has denied that hospitals and ambulance services are experiencing a "humanitarian crisis". nhs england's director for acute care, professor keith willett, said there was unprecedented pressure but plans were in place to cope. i have great respect for the red cross as a caring organisation and we have worked with them over recent winters both funding and supporting them with their excellent service at home and ambulance services but on the international scale for the red cross of a humanitarian crisis i do not think the nhs is at that point.
we have had strong criticism from other people, like the nuffield trust and others, and it appears we go through this every winter and it is particularly bad this winter. clearly demand is at the highest level ever but also our planning is probably more comprehensive now than it has ever been. in many ways this is a level of pressure we have not seen before and the workload that the nhs is being asked to shoulder in terms of medical treatment and personal care is very high. there are several reasons. it is winter, many more people have breathing and heart problems, but we know it is also very difficult at the moment and social care and community services cannot react fast enough to free up beds to keep up the flow through hospitals. that is the fundamental problem, moving patients through hospital. patients only need to be in hospital
receiving specialist care and after that they are much better placed in the community and we need to focus on that and that's why i think the red cross as a caring organisation really have identified this. the public can help as well. in winter there are many things the public can do to try to avoid coming to a&e unless it is essential for emergency or urgent conditions. there are opportunities to phone 111, everyone has has access to a 24—hour out—of—hours general practice service. and medical advice can be offered in places on the high street. let's talk now to the shadow health secretary jonathan ashworth. the phrase humanitarian crisis, aleppo is a humanitarian crisis but worcestershire is not? the nhs is
facing a crisis. able are turned away from a&e, some hospitals warning they cannot offer comprehensive care. some elderly people are languishing on trolleys beyond 2a hours. the issue of controversy is not the words the red cross have used but it is the ongoing underfunding of the nhs under the conservative government and the cuts to the social care sector pulling the nhs town and responsible in many circumstances for the huge pressures being seen. for the government to continue worrying their heads in the sand when patients are suffering is quite frankly a disgrace. we have tried to get to the bottom of this, because it goes on every year, perhaps not with the difficulties we see this winter, but in terms of social care, would you agree it is the root of the problem and it has not been
tackled by successive governments despite the fact we have known it will be a big problem for 20 years? there are two issues. social care in this country has seen £4.6 billion of cuts. there are hundreds of thousands of elderly people not getting social care packages they would have five or six years ago and thatis would have five or six years ago and that is putting untold strain on the nhs. the conservatives are also underfunding the nhs more generally. it is going through the largest financial squeeze in its history. spending on the nhs is set to fall under this government. even with the former tory health secretary said the expected five years of austerity for the nhs at they didn't plan for a second parliament of austerity. to race on may —— theresa may cannot continue sticking her head in the sand. to weave patients on trolleys,
people turned away from a&e, the near collapse of the app acute sector is an absolute disgrace and the government has to do something quickly. how does that square with nhs england's comments when they say beds are not as full as last year and there is more money going into the system. —— system? and there is more money going into the system. -- system? in your package they said there were unprecedented pressures on the nhs and they said people should go to a gp, which is difficult, and they said we should go to community pharmacies stop the criminals —— the conservative government are cutting funding for them. sarah wollaston, conservative mp, chairman of the select committee, she has said the
figure is incorrect, and the official statisticians have told of the government for using the figure. the government has cut social care budgets and that is why we see huge pressure on the nhs and that is why it is ina pressure on the nhs and that is why it is in a crisis this winter and theresa may cannot ignore it. the british people deserve better. sir ivan rogers has confirmed his resignation from the fco and the civil service. formerly britain's most senior diplomat at the european union, sir ivan rogers, resigned last wednesday — just months before he was due to play an important role in the complex negotiations on the uk‘s exit from the eu. police in the us state of florida are holding a suspected gunman in custody after five people were killed and eight injured in a shooting at fort lauderdale airport. the suspect has been named as
esteban santiago, a former soldier. his motive isn't yet known. santiago is said to have taken a gun out of a bag in the baggage area, after flying in from alaska. gary 0'donoghue reports from fort lauderdale. it is a familiar scene at airports the world over, but the baggage claim hall at the fort lauderdale airport turned into a place of death and mayhem, as a lone gunman opened fire on those waiting to collect their luggage. passengers scattered for cover, hitting the ground, and reports say the assailant had time to reload before opening fire once again, as attempts were made to tend to the wounded. once he was done with ammunition, he threw the gun down, and i was about ten feet away from him. he basically threw the gun onto the ground and laid on the ground face down, spreadeagled. some initial reports, quickly discounted, spoke of another gunman, spreading panic among passengers. the gunman has been named as 26—year—old esteban santiago. reports say he was carrying a military id and had a weapon in his checked baggage, which is legal in the united states.
0ne family member said he had been receiving psychological treatment after leaving the national guard last year. this cowardly, heinous act resulted in the deaths of five people. there were eight more people injured by way of gunshot, that were transported to local hospitals. there were at least 30—a0 more people who went to hospital for various injuries. in his first reaction to the shooting, president 0bama said he was heartbroken for the families. these kinds of tragedies have happened too often during the eight years that i've been president. the pain, the grief, the shock. the disruption at fort lauderdale went on long into the night, with some travellers stuck on the tarmac for more than eight hours. the fbi says it is ruling nothing out, including terrorism. but the agency has confirmed it had prior contact
with santiago in november, when he was referred for a mental health assessment. the ease with which he was able to transport and use a weapon in an airport will raise serious concerns about public safety. and gary gave us this update a short while ago. it is legal to transport a firearm in your checked baggage in the usa. there are restrictions. you must declare it to the airline when you arrive and it has to be locked inside a hard case and unloaded. you can carry ammunition with it. that means once you get to the baggage claim at the other end, you can get it and it seems what happened here is esteban santiago did get his semiautomatic out of his case, go back into the baggage hall and start shooting pretty indiscriminately. i think it will raise questions even here. these shootings are not infrequent, as we know, in the usa, and there will be calls for gun
control and there will be push—back from the gun lobby. it is a familiar dance. but i think people will wonder, look, we have all this security in place when we go into the airport, should it be so easy for someone to get it out of their bag at the other end and still be in the airport and be able to cause this much death and mayhem? the us department of homeland security says it will increase protection of the country's voting machines and data bases, to guard against cyber attacks. it's in response to a report by intelligence officials which, for the first time, directly accuses president putin of trying to boost donald trump's election bid. catrina renton reports. the report from american intelligence claims russia's president, vladimir putin, personally ordered what it called an influence campaign to help donald trump's chances of winning the american presidency. it said the goals were to denigrate
his opponent hillary clinton and harm her credibility. —— and harm her electability. the conclusion, the kremlin developed a clear preference for donald trump. the president—elect had earlier described the russian hacking claims as a political witch—hunt by his opponents. at trump tower, he met america's top intelligence officials for a classified briefing. they claim russia's actions included hacking into the e—mail accounts of the democratic national committee and top democrats, and using intermediaries such as wikileaks to release the information. russia has previously denied this, and wikileaks founderjulian assange has said before that moscow was not the source. a former cia director who resigned from donald trump's transition team gave his view. it depends how you phrase it. "russia was involved" looks supportable as a proposition in no small measure i think because they were able to come
up with the identities of the intermediaries between the russian government and the people who did some hacking, they did not have that before and that, i think, was one thing that got a lot of people's attention, including mine. after the briefing, mr trump did not single out russia. in a statement he said... and the incoming vice president says the us will strengthen cyber defences. the president—elect has made it very clear that we're going to take aggressive action in the early days of our new administration to combat cyber attacks and protect the security of the american people from this type of intrusion in the future. donald trump said he had tremendous
respect for the work and service done by those in the us intelligence community. but with two weeks to go until he moves into the white house, questions remain over how they will all work together to keep america safe. catriona renton, bbc news. the headlines on bbc news. the british red cross hasjoined senior doctors in warning of a crisis in nhs accident and emergency departments in england. a former american army soldier has been arrested after five people were shot dead at fort lauderdale airport in florida. a survey suggests the cost of repairing potholes in england and wales could reach £14 billion. wildfires in north america are getting bigger, more frequent and more destructive, according to official us government statistics. scientists say a warming climate combined with a century of fire suppression by the people who settled the west has produced the perfect conditions for so—called megafires.
0ur north america correspondent james cook reports from the colorado rockies. welcome to the furnace. across large swathes of north america, this is the new terrifying normal. in the united states last year, there were more than 60,000 wildfires, and the trend is towards bigger and more destructive blazes. huge fires are transforming the landscape of the united states. here in the foothills of the rockies, a blaze burned through here 20 years ago, and still it looks like this. no longer dense forest, but essentially prairie. the buffalo creek blaze was one of several so—called mega fires here in colorado which destroyed homes, polluted water supplies, and left locals lucky enough to escape fearful for the future. it is terrifying. it's devastating, the destruction, it's traumatic. it brings into focus very quickly that there's something wrong here.
so what is wrong? scientists say rising temperatures and years of drought are partly to blame, and so too is a century of firefighting by the settlers of the west, who interrupted the natural rhythm of regular fires so they could preserve life and precious timber. the results — thicker forest, more fuel to burn, and often devastation. we are caught in this vicious circle. forests need fire — fire is as natural to a forest as sunshine and rain. no—one ever lost a job for fighting a fire. as a fire manager or a policy maker, the far more difficult decision is to allow a fire to burn, to manage a fire for its resource benefit. but sometimes you think that needs to happen? 0h, absolutely. the lead agency for wildfires, the us forest service, is caught in a trap — it can't find enough money for its programmes to thin out woodland and prevent fire, because more than half its budget is being spent on firefighting.
its boss says that has got to change. it's essential that we find a different way to be able to fund fire suppression in this country, and simply to be able to recognise that 1—2% of these fires that start every year need to be considered a natural disaster, not unlike floods are, like hurricanes are, like windstorms are. for a time, some people thought they had tamed the wild west — nature is proving them wrong. james cook, bbc news, in the colorado rockies. at least 12 people have died in flooding in southern thailand. thousands of villages have been cut off and submerged after a week of heavy rain and floods. flights, trains and bus services have been disrupted in the south of the country. the country's meteorological department has warned that the unseasonal downpour will continue for at least another two days. last—ditch talks aimed at averting a strike by london underground workers have got underway at the conciliation service acas.
members of the transport salaried staffs association and the rail, maritime and transport union are due to walk out for 2h hours from 6pm on sunday, causing travel chaos for millions of passengers during rush hour on monday. both unions are attending the talks. the dispute is about staffing levels and ticket office closures. the repair bill to fix the country's potholes could soon reach £14 billion. that's according to councils in england and wales who say the government should pay for the repairs from fuel duty. the government says it's already putting £250 million into fixing the problem, but the local government association says that's not enough, as duncan kennedy reports. councils fix 2 million potholes every year. that is about 12,000 for every local authority in england and wales. but it never seems to be enough.
now, the councils claim the repair bill could soon reach £14 billion. hard—pressed councils, who are mending, you know, a pothole every five seconds in this country, just cannot get to the core of the problem, which is actually many of our roads are just being patched now. they need to be fully repaired. the councils say the government must do more to help, and suggest increasing fuel duty by a couple of pence a litre, a figure they say the public would support. but it is notjust the cost of repairing all these potholes that seems to be on the increase. today's report also found that the time it is taking appears to be on the rise as well, going up from ten years in 2006 to 14 years today. last year, the government announced a £250 million pothole repairfund to help 100 councils fixed 4 million potholes. but today's report by local councils suggest that is not enough,
and that the pothole problem is actually getting worse. for the first time, the nhs is providing disabled children with prosthetic limbs, that are specially designed for sport. nhs england says it hopes to equip "several hundred" children a year with the limbs, to allow them to participate in more sport. here's our health correspondent robert pigott. right, how have you been doing, then, since you had your blade? when ben made the decision at the age of ten to have his stunted right leg amputated, his dream of a future in sport seemed remote. would you like to put it on for me and show me what you can do with it? three years on, ben is one of the first children to receive a running blade on the nhs. as if he were changing a shoe, he can swap his false leg for the blade and feel a new freedom and energy. the spring of it is the bit makes me go faster. i used to not be able to, like, be able to run as fast or able to kick a ball as well, but now i've got a good amount of power in my leg, and i've got the right size,
so i can do loads of skills and hit a ball really well. the blade and the treatment cost around £1000, but clairejohnson, a health service expert in prosthetic limbs, says the nhs will more than recoup the cost by keeping children active. we're hoping that it will give them a level playing field, so that he can compete with his peers and be able to participate in a lot more sports. it does help in the wider scheme of things, and hopefully give a longer longevity to their lives by giving them the opportunity to do sport. ben is among 2500 children in england with limbs that are either absent or which don't work properly. the nhs hopes to fit several hundred of them with a sports prosthetic every year. the scheme not only opens the way to sport for a group of disabled youngsters, but it comes with an added message. at a time when so many teenagers are couch potatoes, it makes an example of an extraordinary few
who overcome all the odds to carve out a life in sport. the new blade, for me, can do a lot more than my prosthetic can do, cos now i can run with more freedom. ben's mother kathleen says running blades can change a disabled child's whole outlook on life. he seems more confident, and more eager to get out and about now. he's wanting to put it on and go out more, nd do more sports, more activities. now he has got the blade, the sky is the limit. ben says he is now training for the paralympics, and he's talking dates — 2024, at the very least. 2020? who knows? robert pigott, bbc news, brighton. nasa have released a rare detailed photo of the earth and the moon, as seen from mars which is some 127 million miles away. the image was taken from nasa's most powerful telescope
orbiting the red planet. the reddish feature near the middle of the face of earth is australia. a young fan of the coldstream guards now has a memento from his birthday visit to windsor castle. marshall scott was celebrating his fourth birthday at the castle, dressed as a miniature guardsman, when one of the guards surprised him by posing for a photo alongside the youngster. the video was shared online by charanpreet singh, one of the guards involved. time for a look at the weather. it is gloomy. not very inspiring. a lot of cloud. but some sunshine for a few of us, particularly the tops of the hills. that is the exception. for most of us it is dull. some
persistent fog patches around to add to the misery. for most of us, not too rosy. some dampness in the south—west but persistent rain is easing away. tonight, the fog will become more thick in some spots, so become more thick in some spots, so be careful on the roads. cloud cover for most should invent temperatures falling to low. frost free for the majority. eastern scotland getting close. some of the best sunshine here on sunday. some mist patches will linger into the day. dampness on the west of scotland on a freshening breeze but it should be relatively mild for most of us. more detail in half an hour. hello. this is bbc news. the headlines: the red cross, which has been drafted in to help the nhs in england cope with winter pressures, says hospitals and ambulance services are experiencing a "humanitarian crisis". a former american army soldier has
been arrested after five people were shot dead at fort lauderdale airport in florida. it's emerged that the suspect was known to the authorities. last—ditch talks aimed at averting a strike by london underground workers are underway at the conciliation service acas. a 24—hour strike is due to start on sunday evening. wildfires in north america are increasing in size and becoming more destructive, according to us government statistics. scientists say firefighting itself may be to blame. sport now, and for a full round—up, let's go to the bbc sport centre. plenty going on in the fa cup third round and plenty of potential upsets. it starts at old trafford with reading facing manchester united football club yap stam is back at the club he won the treble with 18 years ago. he is now
managing reading and he's selected another united old boy, tyler blackett, to start. paul mcshane is out with a hand injury. wayne rooney starts. just one goal before he can equal sir bobby charlton's goal—scoring record. sergio romero starts in goal. paul pogba, zlatan ibrahimovic and henrik mkhitaryan are all on the bench. so is bastian schweinsteiger. the five non—league teams left will have a fair chance of getting into the fourth round with sutton and ba ro the fourth round with sutton and baro enjoying home advantage. eastleigh and lincoln have tough trips to championship sides. the lowest tea m trips to championship sides. the lowest team left in the competition, stourbridge, are away at wycombe wanderers. tricky trees for premier league teams as well. —— tricky trip. one of the best teams in
europe, a manager who has graced the premier league for 20 years. the original invincible is against the modern day in vince and is. it's a fantastic occasion, it will be a sell—out. third round of the fa cup, there's always a surprise, hopefully that will be the case on saturday night. it's a massive competition for everybody to win the fa cup. it's a wizard target every year. we know that after a congested christmas period it's a wizard tricky game, the third round. that's why i believe it's a mental challenge as well for the premier league teams to prepare well, not to have a bad surprise and especially when you go to a championship team.