tv Early Start With John Berman and Christine Romans CNN May 15, 2015 1:00am-2:01am PDT
gaining speed as it approached that curve. new information this morning about the deadly amtrak derailment. when the train's engineer will finally speak about what led up to the tragedy and how available technology may have been able to prevent that crash. good morning. welcome to "early start." i'm christine romans. it is 4:00 a.m. in the east. we start with breaking news. the u.s. helicopter missing since tuesday in nepal has been found high on the steep slopes of a mountain east of kathmandu.
the defense secretary telling cnn three bodies have been found in the charred wreckage of the helicopter. six u.s. marines on the helicopter helping on an aid mission when the pilot radioed about some kind of fuel problem, then contact was lost. cnn's will ripley will join us with details in a few minutes. that helicopter has been found and officials saying three bodies in the charred wreckage. we will bring more as we get it. there is new information on the crash of amtrak 188. the engineer driving the train has been agreed to be interviewed by the ntsbational transportation safety board. 32-year-old brandon bostian was at the controls when the train derail in philadelphia. eight people killed and more than 200 injured. ntsb officials hope bostian can answer the remaining questions. among them why the train accelerated from 70 to over 100
miles per hour in the moments before the crash. we are also learning this morning that amtrak was just months away from installing a safety system that would have prevented the deadly accident. cnn's brian todd is in philadelphia with the latest. >> reporter: good morning, christine. we have new details on the train derailment this morning from the ntsb. they say the engineer of the train, brandon bostian, has agreed to be interviewed by ntsb officials. they say that will occur in the next few days. new data from the train that officials are giving us. they analyzed the forward facing camera in the locomotive of the train which captured images of the train before the derailment. that camera captured the display of the speed. officials said it shows a gradual build up of speed before the end of the recording. that recording came a couple of
seconds before the train derailed. it showed 16 seconds before the end of the recording, the train's speed exceeded 100 miles an hour. they did checks to the signals and controls and track from before the accident. they checked the mechanical records up until the departure of the trip. officials say they found no anomaly anomalies. the vehicle drove over the section of the track the day before the trip and found no anomalies. they checked the signals around the junction of the track. they checked the signals and so far, they found no anomalies. we have information from rene marsh, coming from an amtrak spokesperson. the system called the positive train control which defaults and kicks in with an automatic system which slows down or stops the train. that system was in place in the southbound side of the section
of the track, but not on the northbound side which is where the accident occurred. that positive train control is in place on the southbound side the spokesperson says is because the trains from new york south travel at a greater rate of speed, especially in that section of the track. it is a controversy that the system has not been in place in the northbound section. in the ntsb officials say the accident would not have occurred. christine. friends and former colleagues of brandon bostian are speaking out in his defense. xavier bishop worked with him as a flagman until fired from amtrak over attendance issues. bishop says bostian is conscious. he says he has never seen bostian take a drink. >> great engineer. he was on point.
if there was something he did not know he knew who to call to get the information. he did not come off as i know it all. if he wasn't sure about something, he would call and make sure that he got the proper information. he wasn't going to do anything. i'm going to assume something would happen. he was thorough. >> you mentioned we all know this speed. we know the track and route. you know that curve is coming up. you are leaving philly and you have to go slow for a while. what i can't understand then is how can this guy who you travelled with on these tracks many times have gone into this situation so hot? >> again, that's the million dollar question. to be honest with you, i'm going based on the person i know. you know, i'm not going to say we can't make mistakes. we are human. we all make mistakes. you know for something like
this i don't know. there are just not enough pieces of the puzzle for me. >> amtrak facing the first in likely a series of lawsuits. attorneys for an amtrak dispatcher filed suit in federal court on thursday. bruce phillips was driving in train 188 when the crash violently hurled him to the floor. the attorney says his clint is in the hospital with spinal injuries. >> anytime a train is operating twice the speed of the restricted speed in that area, this just is not negligence but way beyond any train can be doing anytime. this is horrendous. especially you have to remember the train is going through a curve.
you are speeding up going into the curve. >> the crews pulled the body of a man previously identified as missing from the wreckage of the lead car. mayor michael nutter says the discovery of 243 people known aboard the train have been accounted for. president obama offering prayers for victims and thanks to the rescuers. >> i want to again express my condolences to the families of those who died in the tuesday's terrible train derailment outside of philadelphia. i want to express my gratitude for the first responders who raced to save leaves and the passengers despite their injuries made heroic efforts to get fellow passengers to safety. >> most of the more than 200 crash victims taken to area hospitals have been released. national correspondent sunlen serfaty has more on those treated. >> reporter: christine, those
who have been in critical condition since tuesday have been downgraded. this leaves six patients in critical condition suffering from major chest wounds punctured lungs and broken ribs. citywide there are 30 passengers remaining in the six hospitals. we are hearing the confirmation of lives lost. eight people have been killed. seven people identified. among them italian national who was visiting the united states on business. 47-year-old laura finimore and bob gildersleeve his body was found at the crash site discovered by cadaver dogs. >> this leads to an ongoing fight over rail service. president obama says we need to
invest more government money. >> until we know for certain what caused the tragedy, i want to reiterate what i already said. we are a growing country with a growing economy. we need to invest the infrastructure that keeps us that way. not just when something bad happens like a bridge collapse or train derailment but all the time. >> on wednesday, the house appropriations committee voted to reduce grants to amtrak by $252 million. a drop of 15% from the prior year. committee also defeated an amendment for $825 million to fund the automated positive train control system. nine minutes past the hour. breaking news. a u.s. marine helicopter that went missing in nepal earlier this week has been found. six u.s. marines on that chopper helping with the earthquake relief efforts when radio contact was lost. a top ranking officer with the nepal army telling cnn the chopper has been sighted on the
steep slope of a mountain east of kathmandu. the same official saying at least three bodies have been located. i want to bring in cnn's will ripley live from kathmandu. will in the early going of the missing helicopter there was optimism that because of fuel problems, it safely landed and just needed to be located. that is not the case. what can you tell us? >> reporter: very very difficult news coming out of this headquarters where i am right now. the nepalese army launched search operations. it was the nepalese military that spotted the helicopter within the past several hours. this location is 21 miles east of where i'm standing in kathmandu in the remote mountainous area which was hit hard by the earthquake. one of the areas the helicopter was delivering humanitarian aid.
we flew over that area yesterday. it is one of the areas where crews have been searching by air and on ground. it was an aerial search that spotted the helicopter. we know crews on the ground reached the crash site. the defense secretary in nepal are saying they found the three bodies and they were burned. we don't know identification on bodies. we don't know the location of the other crew members. three bodies have been found so far. they were trying to help. they were trying to help tens of thousands of people in the region who are in badly need of humanitarian aid. food water and medicine. their mission was to bring back injured people and bring them back to hospital in kathmandu. it seems they have flown out about 80 miles east and trying to head back. a radio communication of a fuel problem. we don't know what caused the
helicopter to go gowndown. they did not make it christine. >> they did not make it. what was a missing helicopter is now a crashed helicopter. can you tell us anything else about the marines on board? do you know where they were stationed or where they were from or what kind of helicopter? obviously officials may be quiet about where the group is from until they can find out the true nature of the crash and alert their loved ones. >> reporter: we believe the helicopter was based in camp pendleton in california. according to the postings the pilot from wichita, kansas. other than that little information about the identification and little information about the nepalese government. now we have learned and the worst fears confirmed, the
process will be to find these people and see if anybody survived. if nobody did, to recover their remains and we will start to learn once families have been notified more about the heroes who were on board to help the people in nepal who badly need it. >> thank you, will ripley. breaking news overnight from las vegas. blues artist b.b. king who inspired a generation of musicians has died. ♪ i don't care if you're young or old get together ♪ >> singer and songwriter and great guitar players and vocalist. king won 15 grammy awards and one for lifetime achievement. he was inducted in the rock 'n' roll and blues foundation hall of fame. he died at his home in las vegas
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interview with federal investigators. they are hoping 32-year-old brandon bostian was traveling at speeds topping 100 miles an hour when the train went off the tracks. the disaster killed eight people and injured more than 200. we are learning that amtrak was months away from installing a new safety system that would have prevented the derailment. cnn's tom foreman with more on that technology. >> reporter: christine, positive train control is about building a matrix of information around trains on the tracks. it starts with gps and satellites that tell the engineer where they are at any moment. that is augmented by stations along the tracks which pass along switches and crossings and it is all brought together by ground stations which coordinate this information and produce one very clear graphic for the engineer to look at to tell him or her precisely when to start
braking to avoid having an accident. if the engineer does not respond and does not slow down when necessary, the computer would then take over these the positive part of positive train control and it would slow down or stop the train to avoid an accident. this could, in theory stop a lot of things. if you put this system fully in place, you should have no more major train-to-train collisions and no errors with switching on the tracks or crews run into by trains and importantly, you would stop high-speed derailment with a train hitting a turn or overpass too fast to handle. that would happen because the computer would take over. important to remember, ifyou will only get rid of 2% of the collisions or derailments. there will be a lot of small events with switching yards and
this system no matter how well it works, is not designed to stop trains from hitting pedestrians or cars that get on the tracks. small events that nonetheless, take hundreds of lives every year. christine. >> indeed. tom foreman, thank you. other breaking news this morning. a u.s. military helicopter missing after the earthquake in nepal has been found and the details are not good. back in a moment.
a u.s. military helicopter carrying marines missing after nepal's devastating earthquake has been found. we are live with the details. and mounting questions after the amtrak derailment. and breaking news. b.b. king dead at the age of 89. the legacy he leaves behind ahead. welcome back to "early start." i'm christine romans. breaking news. a u.s. marine helicopter missing earlier this week has been found crashed in the mountains of nepal. a top ranking officer with nepal says the chopper was located on a mountain side east of kathmandu. six u.s. marines on the chopper helping with the earthquake relief efforts when radio contact was lost. i want to bring in cnn's will
ripley from kathmandu. who was aboard the helicopter and what are they doing now to assess the scope of the damage if there are any survivors. >> reporter: eight people are board. six u.s. marines based in camp pendleton and two nepal soldiers. all trying to provide aid to the hardest hit regions from the two major earthquakes that hit the country. they were delivering aid in an area which is one of the hardest hit regions. that is where this helicopter has been found. about 21 miles east of where i'm standing right now. the helicopter was on a supply mission to drop off supplies and pick up injured and they never
made it to the pick up point. there was a radio communication of a possible fuel problem. we know the chopper went down at high altitude. 11,200 feet. on a rugged mountain side. the defense secretary confirmed that three charred bodies have been found near the crash site which indicates the condition of the helicopter which they are calling wreckage of the helicopter is just not good. still no word on the remaining crew members or the identities of the people. >> six marines and two people from the nepal army. clearly this is not the development anyone was hoping for. there was talk earlier this week because of the reported fuel problem, perhaps they had gone down and used their training to survive until they were rescued. we do know that it is difficult under the best circumstances to fly helicopters at such high
altitudes. in the himalayans in particular this is treacherous terrain. >> reporter: absolutely christine. we flew over the spot yesterday. we surveyed not only the search zone and now located helicopter but also a look at the tremendous amount of damage. it is overwhelming to see how much damage there is with landslides that eliminated the main roads to the communities which are cut off. flying in the area is difficult. you are dealing with difficult weather and low visibility. there can be shifts in the weather. this is a region where helicopters have gone down before. in fact the last 20 years, at least one case where a helicopter crashed and it was never found because the terrain is so difficult and sometimes you just can't find the wreckage. in this case they located the missing helicopter. there are personnel on the ground right now, special forces and nepalese forces on the ground to see if anyone was able
to survive. they don't have the answers right now, but three did not. we will wait to learn about the five others. >> so tragic. doing their jobs trying to help people and losing their lives in the process. a tragic twist. thank you for that. we will bring you more information as we get it. there's new information on the crash of amtrak 188. the engineer driving the train has agreed to be interviewed by the national transportation safety board. 32-year-old brandon bostian was at the controls when the train derailed outside philadelphia. ntsb officials hope bostian can answer the remaining questions. here are the questions. why did that train accelerate from 70 miles per hour to over 100 in just the moments before the crash? we are learning this morning that amtrak was just months away from installing a safety system that would have prevented the deadly accident. cnn's brian todd is in
philadelphia for us this morning with the latest. >> reporter: good morning, christine. we have new details on the investigation of the train derailment this morning from the ntsb. they say the engineer of the train, brandon bostian, has agreed to be interviewed by ntsb officials. it will occur in the next few days. data from the train that officials are giving us. they analyzed the forward facing camera in the locomotive of the train. that camera also captured a display of the train's speed. officials say it shows a gradual build up of speed until just before the end of the recording. the end of the recording came a couple of seconds before the train derailed. and 16 seconds before the end of the recording, the train's speed exceeded 100 miles an hour. they did checks to the signals and controls and track from before the accident.
they did a mechanical inspection records up until the departure of the trip. officials say they found no anomalies in the records. they did a track inspection. a vehicle drove over the section of the tracks for inspection before the trip and found no anomalies. they checked the signals around the junction of the track. so far, they have found no anomalies. we have information from my colleague rene marsh. a spokesperson told her that system called the positive train control which defaults and basically kicks in an automatic system which slows down or stops the train when it is going too fast that system was in place in the southbound side of the section of the track, but not on the northbound side which is where the accident occurred. the reason that positive train control is in place on the southbound side the spokesman tells rene marsh, because trains going from new york south travel
at a greater rate of speed in that section of the track. it is a big controversy that the system is not in place in the northbound section. ntsb officials say if it had been this accident would not have occurred. christine. >> brian todd for us. thank you. friends and former colleagues of the engineer brandon bostian are speaking out in his defense. xavier bishop worked as his flagman until bishop was fired for attendance issues. he says he has never seen bostian take a drink or drive a train we he wasn't ready. >> if there was something he did not know he knew who to call to get information. he did not come off as i know it all or he knew everything. he knew what he needed to know. if he wasn't 100% sure he would call and make sure he got the
proper information. he wasn't going to do anything and i'm going to assume something would happen. he was thorough. >> you mentioned we all know the speeds. we all know the trip and route. you know the curve is coming up. you are leaving philly and you have to go slow for a while. what i can't understand then is how can this guy who you traveled with on the tracks many times, have gone into that situation so hot. >> again, that's the million dollar question. to be honest with you, i'm going based on the person i know. i'm not going to say we can't make mistakes. we're human. we all make mistakes. for something like this i don't know. there are just not enough pieces to the puzzle. >> amtrak facing the first of a series of lawsuits. attorneys for dispatcher bruce
phillips riding as a passenger was violently hurled through the car. his attorney accusing amtrak of gross negligence. >> anytime a train is operating twice the speed of the restricted speed in that area this just isn't negligence this is way beyond what any train can be doing at anytime. this is horrendous. especially you have to remember the train is going into a suffercurve. you are speeding up. >> the death toll from tuesday's crash is now eight. as crews pulled the body of a man previously identified as missing from the wreckage of the lead car. philadelphia mayor michael nutter says now 243 people known aboard have been accounted for. president obama offering prayers for victims and thanks to the rescuers.
>> i want to express my deepest condolences to the families of those who died in the train derailment outside of philadelphia. i want to express my gratitude to the first responders who raced to save lives and passengers despite injuries made efforts to get fellow passengers to safety. >> most of the more than 200 crash victims taken to hospitals. most have been released. a political battle over infrastructure spending. yesterday, president obama said the united states needs to invest more when it comes to infrastructure and not just when there are bridge collapsing or train derailment. john boehner tore into a report reporter reporter. >> are you really going to ask? that's a stupid question. listen you know they started this yesterday. it's all about funding. it's all about funding.
well obviously it's not about funding. the train was going twice the speed limit. >> on wednesday, the house appropriations committee voted to reduce funding. the thrill is gone. b.b. king who inspired a generation of musicians has died. ♪ i don't care if you're young or old get together ♪ ♪ let the good times roll ♪ >> one of the world's greatest guitar players and amazing vocalist. b.b. king won 15 grammy awards and one for lifetime achievement. he was inducted in the rock 'n' roll and blues foundation halls of fame. king died in his sleep at his home in las vegas. b.b. king was 89. a new message from the leader of isis calling for new attacks. what he had to say and why the release now. next.
isis trying to prove to the world its leader seen here is alive and well. you rarely see him. in fact the only video available of him. the terror group releasing a new 34 minute audio recording of al bagdadi. the voice on the tape does sound like abu bakr al bagdadi. the voice calls on all muslims to travel to the middle east to join isis or carry out attacks
where they live. recent reports say the terror leader suffered wounds and spinal injuries during a coalition air strike in iraq. the iranians stirg up trouble. five of the war ships firing on a cargo vessel with singapore's flag. it started when the cargo ship was ordered to navigate into iranian waters. the crew of the cargo ship refused. iranians fired on it but failed to disable it. the ship headed straight for the shores of the uae. the gun boats then backed off. president obama assuring americans persian gulf allies will stand by them if attacked. the summit ended on thursday with handshakes and smiles. leaders growing nervous about the nuclear talk was iran. the president says the leaders agree. jurors deciding the fate of
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89. his attorney says he died in his sleep at his home in las vegas. cnn's stephanie elam has more on his career. >> reporter: it's hard to imagine the blues without b.b. king. the legendary blues man released over 50 albums with songs as "the thrill is gone" and "let the good times roll." ♪ nothing wrong baby ♪ >> reporter: born riley b. king he began recording in the 1940s. he was known as blues born king and then b.b. then at the height of his popularity he played 342 one-night stands. he continued a rigorous touring
schedule into his 80s. >> it feels very very good to go on stage whether you win a grammy or not. >> reporter: throughout the years, king worked with artists like u2 and with eric clapton. >> you get a chance to learn a lot of great things from people that have so much going for them today. >> reporter: in 1987 he was inducted into the rock 'n' roll hall of fame and a spot on the hollywood walk of fame. he was rarely seen without his gibson guitar lucille. the gifted guitarist was the first musician to be honored with the kennedy lifetime achievement award in 1995.
president bush awarded him with the medal of freedom. king's health was a concern since he was diagnosed with type-two diabetes in his '60s. >> to me blues is a type of music. it is good. >> reporter: in 2012 president obama hosted a concert celebrating blues music. b.b. king was one of the featured performers. >> the king of the blues. mr. b.b. king. ♪ let the good times roll ♪ >> reporter: with a career spanning over 50 years, b.b. king let the good times roll. wish your skin could bounce back as quickly as it used to? introducing neutrogena hydro boost
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welcome back. i'm christine romans. a good end to the week so far. asian stocks higher. stock futures in the u.s. are higher as well. yesterday, the s&p 500 up 1.1%. a record high. the dow and nasdaq within striking distance of highs. what's the first stock most people buy? apple. that's according to td ameritrade. millennials more likely to invest in tech companies. facebook is the second most popular. tesla, ali baba. investors over the age of 35 they like ge. at&t and intel and johnson &
johnson. many low skill jobs disappeared. jobs that require a college degree or some training have been growing in the past three years. they returned to pre-recession levels. the same cannot be said for low skilled jobs. growth is weak for jobs like fast food and cleaning services and retail. those are the only ones coming back early on in the recovery. now the trend has reversed as jobs that require a college degree or training those are the jobs that returned to pre-recession levels. "early start" continues right now. >> breaking news this morning. a u.s. military helicopter missing after nepal's devastating earthquake has been found. we are live. dramatically gaining speed as approaching the curve. mounting questions into the
deadly amtrak derailment. the death of a blues legend. b.b. king dead at the age of 89. the legacy he leaves behind. welcome to "early start." i'm christine romans. it is friday may 15th. 5:00 a.m. in the east. john berman has the morning off. i want to start with breaking news this morning. a u.s. marine helicopter that went missing this week has been found. crashed in the mountains of nepal. a top ranking officer with the nepalese army telling cnn the chopper has been located on the steep slope of a mountain east of kathmandu. there are at least three bodies located in the wreckage. six u.s. marines were on the helicopter helping with the earthquake efforts when the radio contact was lost. i want to bring in cnn's will ripley live in kathmandu. the crash location is east of where you ar