tv CNN Newsroom CNN June 30, 2012 4:00am-4:30am PDT
i tell mike what i can spend. i do my best to make that work. we're driving safely. and sue saved money on brakes. now that's personal pricing. colorado on fire. 17,000 acres burned. more than 300 homes destroyed. now, at least two dead. we are putting the inferno in focus. later, a massive blackout leaves millions powerless. a dangerous heat wave scorches the central and eastern u.s. no air-conditioning and no refrigeration could prove deadly. plus, tomcat split, elmo gone wild and a trademark unibrow.
we bring down the latest on pop culture. good morning, everyone. i'm randi kaye. it is 7:00 on the east coast. 4:00 a.m. out west. thanks for waking up with us. we start with record heat and millions without power. take a look at this map. it shows the states where there are big outages. virginia is the hardest hit with over 1 million homes left in the dark. ohio is close to that many. what could make it worse, another day of 100 degree plus temperatures. the extreme heat may be responsible for at least three deaths near kansas city. we are in rockville, maryland where the power is out. good morning. what are crews doing to try to get the power back on? >> reporter: good morning. the utility companies say they are out assessing the damage. they are trying to get the power restored as quickly as possible.
i spoke to people on the street who said there is power on some streets, many do not have it. i spoke with a man who could not sleep because it was so warm. they are working to get the power restored. millions of people, 3.7 million, the latest estimate across the central and eastern united states stretching from as far west as indiana and kentucky over to here. of course, virginia being hard hit. we are all looking to see how quickly they can get the power restored as we approach more days of 100 plus temperatures. >> as you said, it is supposed to get over 100 degrees there, today. are there fears the heat will be too much for a lot of people without air-conditioning? i don't know how you feel right now, but i imagine it's sticky there. >> reporter: right now, it's okay. in a few hours, if yesterday is any indication, it's going to be quite hot. the real issue is humidity. certainly, yesterday, arnds
here, you had a lot of people complaining and pumping up their air-conditioning. it's the overuse, in some ways of air-conditioning to cool down here that already had the grid overtaxed. so, the issue, again, today is how to cool people down. washington, d.c., the metro police talked about opening cooling centers, extending pool hours. they have emergency centers for the homeless, for senior citizens. they are going to try to do it all day to make sure people have access to cool air. we have to wait and see what happens, especially if we are expected to reach above 100 degrees. if the humidity remains as high, yesterday, we are going to face real challenges and a dangerous situation. >> it is terrible for many. thank you for your reporting this morning. president obama toured colorado springs yesterday
getting a firsthand look at the destruction there. >> we have been putting everything we have into trying to deal with what's one of the worst fires we have seen here in colorado. it's still early in the fire season. we still have a lot more work to do. >> here are some of the numbers on the waldo canyon fire. two people dead found in a burned out home. 346 homes destroyed. thousands more are threatened. 17,000 acres burned. right now, the fire is only about 25% contained. rob is in colorado springs this morning. rob, it is 5:00 a.m. there. are firefighters out there in the dark trying to stop this thing? >> reporter: sure. especially on the western flank of the fire. we have been paying close attention to colorado springs and the homes burned out here. it extends west of the ridge, the front range and communities on the western side. it's where a lot of the ground
crews are camped out and doing some night work. air operations, obviously, are not conducted during the nighttime hours. that won't get going for two or three hours here. it is cool at this time of day. this is the time where the fire starts to lay down. we don't see nearly as much activity. it's remarkable, once the sun comes up, the heat from the sun, how it activates the fires that have been smoldering overnight then you have more flame, more plume and you have firefighters that have much more on their hands than they did when it was nighttime and cooler. >> the pictures of the flames and the smoke as we look at it this morning. it's amazing the work the firefighters are doing. i guess they get an early start. they are out there right now. >> reporter: absolutely. there is an air of confidence that i sense from the firefighters that i talked to yesterday compared to what it was like a few days before.
25% containment doesn't sound like a lot, but some of the lines they have begun to dig gives them more confidence. what they are worried about and what they don't trust is the behavior of this fire. it is still very active and close to residential homes. those people are not allowed to go back. really, from the sound of it, they are not allowing them to go back anytime soon. even the folks that have seen their homes burned out or threatened have not been allowed to look. tomorrow, they will allow some of those people, actually a lot of them, 3,000 or 4,000 will be on buses and travel to the community to look. they are not allowed to go out of the buses, just a visual tour to give them, i don't know, some closure or peace of mind. you can imagine the emotions that are rippling through this community. it's a sad sign for colorado springs, for sure. >> again, just incredible pictures of the devastation there.
rob, thank you very much. the fbi joined the investigation to what caused the waldo canyon fire. one is focusing on a white suv seen near the scene. they want to know what the two men in that vehicle saw. they say they are looking at a lot of video from the scene and want to hear from anyone who may have information on the cause of the this fire. much more on the fires throughout the morning. coming up in five minutes, we'll talk to the guy who took this picture. and this one. i'll ask what it's like to get so close, so personal with that fire. so, what did you think of the supreme court's decision on health care. they let the law stand by a 5-4 margin. check out the gallop poll. the country is evenly split on the decision. 46% say they agree and yes, 46% say they disagree. a bit of a slip of the tongue for louisiana governor bobby
jindal. he was chiming in on a conference call to talk about the ruling on health care. listen to what he said. >> there's only one candidate, governor romney who will repeal the obama care tax increase. he will appeal obama care as soon as he's elected. >> yes, you probably heard it there. he said obomney. it doesn't help when they are comparing it to romney care in massachusetts. we'll have more on the politics later on this morning. attorney general, eric holder won't be held. the house voted to hold him in criminal contempt for not turning over documents. many house democrats walked out on the vote. the justice department says they won't prosecute him on that charge. he cited executive privilege at the reason for not releasing the
documents. now, to a story out of new york. an american eagle flight attendant went into craziness. passengers took a video of this flight attendant losing his cool. he dared passengers who wanted to leave to try it. >> i don't want to hear anything. we will not hear anything once we close the door. so -- if you have balls -- >> if you have balls? is that what he said? >> this is your time. otherwise, you are going to have to fly with jose. >> the flight was on the tarmac for five hours delayed by thunderstorms then returned to the gate to refuel and was eventually canceled. american airlines apologized for the crew's behavior. in the colorado wildfire, crews were on the front lines to fight the blaze. a photographer is sacrificing
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get a free quote today. those are some incredible photographs of what's happening in colorado. it is really hard to gauge the destruction of colorado's massive wildfires unlsz you are there on the ground to see it for yourself. take a look at these pictures by a denver based photographer. he's been risking his safety to share these incredible images. he joins us live from denver, colorado where you are on safe ground this morning. these are incredible pictures. intense picture that is you have witnessed. terrifying moments this week as well. any particular situation for you, trevor, that really stands out?
>> tuesday, when the fire rolled down the mountain into the mountain shadows neighborhood was terrifying. i was standing there by the loaf and jag that is 30th street and garden of the gods road. seeing the fire come down the mountain as the helicopters were going back and forth from a nearby reservoir to dump water on houses and, you know, to protect the structures was just, it was something like i have never seen before in my life. >> we have been showing some of your pictures. let's look at one in particular. tell me what was going on here. we see the helicopter and the road black out. how difficult is it to get around in something like that? >> they do have a lot of roadblocks set up. you know, they obviously don't want you getting anywhere near the fire. just about anywhere you try to go to get a good shot of it,
they are there to stop you. so, you do spend a lot of time driving around trying to find a good angle. that particular -- towards the kissing camels neighborhoods. basically, i just saw a bunch of smoke and as i was driving, i was taking pictures. probably not the safest thing, but -- >> yeah. >> it was just billowing. truly the biggest, i mean i have never seen smoke like that in my life. >> let's look at another one. there's been a lot of coverage on this story. in one picture, there were crowds of people taking in this unbelievable sight. does it surprise you they would stick around and take all this in? >> yeah. there was definitely a lot of people who were curious and wanted to see it. at the intersection of 30th and garden of the gods, there were a lot of people there watching
what was going on. as soon as the fire started coming down the mountain, you could see there was definitely urgency in the air. people started getting out of there because the smoke was getting so bad. >> how close were you able to get to the fire and the smoke? >> as it came down the mountain, i was right there. it got to the point where the smoke was so thick i decided to leave because my eyes were burning. i was having -- my throat was burning, i was having trouble breathing. it was billowing right at us. all of a sudden, 60-mile-an-hour winds coming right in our face. >> do you know anyone who lost their home? do you have friends or family in that area? >> i don't. i know some people who lived down there who are in evacuation areas, but as of this time, i don't know anybody who has lost their home. >> i'm sure your mom is happy
you are back safe and sound from this project? >> she is. definitely. definitely. >> it's amazing what you do and what all the folks there on the ground are doing as well to get the fire under control. thank you for sharing your pictures with us. we appreciate that. stay safe. thank you. >> thank you. next hour, i'll speak to the chief of the u.s. forest service. he'll talk about how the feds are rushing in to aid in the fight against the fire. it is hard to find good news out of the wildfires. we have a picture that might bring a smile to your face. bethany shared this photo. it shows a firefighter holding an injured fawn after it was rescued from a burning home in colorado springs. i'm not sure if we can drop the banner. see the fawn's paw is taped up with a bandage showing the fawn's wounds. it's just an incredible story to
see what a sweet little rescue there. the fawn is in the care of the colorado division of wildfire. nice to see. an adorable puppy trapped in a well. see how rescuers saved his life. that's next. this is new york state. we built the first railway, the first trade route to the west, the greatest empires. then, some said, we lost our edge. well today, there's a new new york state. one that's working to attract businesses and create jobs. a place where innovation meets determination...
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multiple wrecks. he jumped out of his car and started yelling before pulling off his clothes. he climbed on the roof of the car, pulled out the driver, jumped in and fled and crashed into four more cars before police stopped him. one of those injured was a pregnant woman. the suspect may have been on drugs. certainly looks that way. check this out. an extremely rare white buffalo was born on a farm in connecticut. he's two weeks old. only one in ten million buffalo are white. he certainly stands out in the crowd. the bison are usually sold for burgers. this guy is an exception. this will go through a formal naming ceremony next month. now to north carolina where a 7-month-old puppy was trapped at the bottom of a well after he ran away. he was just seven months old. the rescue squad rushed in to get him out.
a rescuer tied him to a rope and carried him up. >> he jumped into my arms. hard to tie him up. he was friendly. i love animals myself. i wouldn't want my pet down there in the hole. >> the pup, we are happy to report is okay. the property owner plans to cover up that well. good idea. congress has finally done something at least 7 million americans will be happy about. interest rates on their federal student loans will not be going up. college students may save about 1,000 bucks at the same time. ♪
subsidized student loans will hold steady for at least one year. the rates were set to double from 3.4% to 6.8%. congress pushed through a bill to help 7 million students save an average of $1,000 over the life of their loan. financial planner karen lee is with me to talk about this. good morning to you. >> good morning. >> love the red dress. you obviously got the memo. >> i did. >> i'm glad. many students are graduating with no job. moms and dads, maybe the grandmas and grandpas are going to have to pick up the slack for them. >> yes. >> what are loan forgiveness programs out there? >> i'm glad you are asking me. the federal government is saying they get few applications for these. they have been around for a long time. you can get between $5,000 up to $100,000 of student loans forgiven if you do certain public sector work from teaching
in high risk school areas, medical services in areas with a higher need and a low doctors and nurses. what you want to do is look into these and see if out of college you might be able to get a job that allows you to get out of paying student loans. there's a new program called the student loan forgiveness program of 2012. it hasn't passed, yet. if it does, after ten years of working in one of these public services and making your payments, at the end, any loans left are forgiven. >> that's great. i wasn't aware these programs exist. >> yes. >> let's talk the current student loan debt. kids are headed back to college in a couple months, applying for loans. are there certain loans they should consider and some to avoid? >> 87% of student loans were federally subsidized. what you want to do is go for one of those versus a private
loan, which might have a higher rate, a private loan from a bank. you have the golden opportunity to get that at 3.4%. >> what about parents. is there any way parents can avoid the loan debt traps? >> we tell parents in our practi practice, don't forsake your own retirement for your kids education. i think creative financing should be looked at. if you are not under water on your mortgage, a home equity line of credit. >> let's talk about the grandparents. they have money at the bank. they have been used to earning 3%, 4%, 5%, they are earning next to nothing. talk to a grandparent, can we loan from you, pay you 3% or 4%, get your income back to where it needs to be. >> that's a better idea. keep it in the family. >> i recommend to do it with a prom sar note. >> not just hey, grandma.
>> right. >> good idea. what about a solution? is there a solution with all the debt hanging out there? what can college students do to keep that down? >> i think that's the bigger question, we -- our rates are going to go up. we are at historically low rates. we need to counsel kids about how to obtain that college degree without the debt burden. i love the idea of taking core curriculum at a local community college, staying in state. maybe then, in the last year or two transfer to the school of your dreams so your degree is from that school. i think there are a lot of ideas like that, working while you are in school, taking a lower course load. really, we have to get these kids to understand, you don't want to walk out of college with $100,000, $200,000 worth of debt. it will hang over you for the rest of your life. >> especially if you don't have a job to pay it off.
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