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tv   ABC World News With David Muir  ABC  August 27, 2011 3:00pm-3:30pm PDT

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it's wn wn and tonight breaking news, hurricane irene's smashes into the mainland and this hurricane is already proving deadly. the towering waves and ferocious winds carving a wave of destruction. stories coming, a little boy at home with his mother killed when a tree crashes through his wall. neighbors jumping into the water in virginia to save people stranded by the hurricane and as irene hits washington, philadelphia and new york tonight, it's bringing a new test to major american sthifs 11th hour evacuations, more than
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2 million ordered to move out and skyscrapers put to the test, what could be a tropical storm on the first floor could be a category 2 hurricane by the 50th, the science behind swirling winds. diane sawyer on the city bracing for irene. >> broadway, completely shut down. >> sam champion, our team of correspondents and abc stations up and down the coast. our coverage begins now. >> rarely has a hurricane barreled forward with so many major american cities in her path. irene roaring up the east coast tonight, hurricane's eye into virginia. looking live at nags head, north carolina. pummelling that region all day and now the view from another perspective. you can see from space that is the angry swirling high above earth tonight and this evening,
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irene is category 1. winds of 80 miles an hour, gusts well above 100 but meteorologists warn even though she's category 1, irene is very large, very slow, swirling 10 hours straight. many areas bracing for storm surges of ten feet. and atathis hour at least four people have died, more than 750,000 have lost power. 2.3 million have been ordered to evacuate. sam champion with the track right now. he's standing by in a moment and so is our team of correspondents. abc stations in the path of this storm. but we begin with matt gutman in north carolina tonight. good evening. >> reporter: we saw today how treacherous this storm could be, we went into the inner eye wall with a group of storm chasers and felt coming down like needles stinging us in the face and the wind made it impossible to walk, that's how powerful it was.
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we came back here and this this type of weather there is no safe place. that railing was ripped off into the ocean behind you and the atlantic there, that was a beach yesterday. the actual ocean was about 200 yards farther down. hurricane irene exploded into north carolina today, as a category 1 hurricane, blasting wind and rain. it weakened from peak strength but remains a massive storm, 700 miles wide and tonight, is already being blamed for at least four deaths in north carolina and virginia. >> never seen the waves that big out there. >> reporter: an 11-year-old boy killed after a tree collapsed on an apartment complex. >> eye wall right there. >> reporter: today, abc news got an exclusive look at the monster storm from the inside, riding along with storm chaser reed timor. >> an intense band on the outside and eye is still to come. >> reporter: we jumped back in to follow the storm which
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mercilessly pummeled the midatlanta ig, thrashing norfolk and slamming through in th cape hatteras gas station and knocked this steeple on its side and ripped shingles from buildings. and those fierce winds piling up tremendous amounts of water. look at the waves in pamlico sound, swallowing the house and this boat. and forcing a dramatic rescue on the chesapeake. rescuers had to use a rope to pull out two survivors. and david, we're coming out of the front end of the storm, hasn't yet hit by the tail end which could bring even more rain, up to 12 or 15 inches, that will increase the massive amount of 234r50ding we've already seen here. storm surges of 15 feet and even higher. and when the 300,000 people who left here from vacation or residents come back here they'll have a lot of work to do to pick up the pieces. >> incredible to see the fury behind you on the back side of the storm. matt gutman in north carolina. we move up to maryland where the
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center of the storm is many hours away but they are already seeing powerful winds. abc's jim sciutto in ocean city, maryland, good evening to you. >> reporter: david, the hurricane still several hours away from landfall here but already feeling the strength of the storm, the winds gusting a >> bre: 50 miles an hour. times when you have to hold on here. ed rain is horizontal and pouring already for serving hours. expecting 17 inches of rain over the next 24 hours but what we've been watching i ihis surf, watching waves grow from a couple of feet to several feet. the seas churning and what is happening now they're coming up along these dunes here which are the last line of defense for the hotels, the homes, the businesses of ocean city. ocean city, david, nowow bracin for a storm surge above eight feet in the next 24 hours. >> jim sciutto with maryland before irene even arrives.
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thank you. >> this is the track sam champion told us irene would follow. let's turn to sam in lower manhattan where hundreds of thousands have been evacuated because that parar of new york s low-lying, real risk for flooding. which is irene now? what is the time line going forward? >> reporter: good evening. let's get a quick look at the track. as we stand in new york harbor, the rain right now will continue throughout the night. and our high tide is about 8:00. here that is hurricane center track. as it's expected to move up the coastline. still the hurricane center's holding with that path but look at the wind field here. hurricane-force winds only extend about 80 miles from the center but this storm more than 500 miles wide and the tropical storm force winds, the heavier rain that will come inland, we'll see rainfall totals rise, as much as 20 inches some >> nomar: some areas.
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>> sam champion will join the entire team in the morning. as sam pointed out irene hitting new york city overnight. abc's rain claiborne standing by with the impact. on the jersey shore tonight, you already reported ten-foot waves there? >> reporter: absolutely, david. the conditions here have really deteriorated in the last 15, 20 minutes. at least 10-foot waves, maybe 15 feet. yesterday the governor of this state chris christie famously or infamously told people to get the hell off the beach. about a million people have fled the new jersey shore. governor said he's concerned about 600 mostly elderly people in mostly highrises refusing to leave and are at risk. they'll experience much the same in philadelphia, just about 50 to 100 miles west of here later today and keep in mind that the hurricane is going to be passing offshore not until tomorrow, so things will get worse here, expecting flooding and power outages in this area in this
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state. >> all right. our brave ron claiborne, lone man standing on the >> ron claiborne, our lone man standing on the jersey shore tonight. good to see that people followed the governor's advice. new york city, the first hurricane warning in 26 years. you've all heard the saying, this is the city that never sleeps. they're not going to be sleeping easy tonight. they'll be tested. parts of new york in lockdown this evening. jim avila, in times square tonight. jim? >> reporter: you can see the rain is falling here. it's not falling strong enough to chase the tourists away. if you want to see an iconic picture, a picture of what's going on today, this is grand central station. the one that's supposed to be crowded all the time. today, it's empty. and that, like new york, is what's happeningngll over manhattan. it's a day like no other in new york history. mandatory evacuations of 370,000 people, living in low-lying, iconic neighborhoods.
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from battery park, to coney island, and rockaway beaches. >> this is a storm, if you're in the wrong place at the wrong time, it can be fatal. >> reporter: patients in nursing homes moved to higher ground. grocery stores jammed. people scrambling for supplies and food to last three days. more than 8 million people who ride the new york mass transit system, from subways to buses to trains, could not this afternoon. greeted by bright pink tape. subways won't run again until at least monday. this woman evacuated her apartment on one the last trains. >> we need to go. >> reporter: the paralyzed city so frightening for this couple, they voluntarily evacuated their apartment today. >> it would be me and her giving birth in our apartment. that was not something we were
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ready to take on by our own. >> reporter: moving to a hotel two blocks from the hospital, because their baby could be born at any minute. >> today is our due date. we're close to a hospital where we can go to and be taken care of. >> reporter: the biggest concern for people in new york city, is not the wind unless you're in a skyscraper. the biggest concern is storm surge. >> a wet night in new york city. as the storm wreaks havoc up and down the east coast, it's affecting air travelers around the country. abc's bianna golodryga tonight on that part of the story. >> reporter: this 21-year-old australian native, was one of the last people remaining this afternoon, at new york's busy laguardia airport. >> it's kind of scary. i don't have anywhere to go. >> reporter: on what would normally be a busy end of summer weekend, all airports up and down the east coast have been
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grounded, all thanks to hurricane irene. on a typical day, some 70,000 passengers would have traveled through laguardia, alone. one of the nation's busiest. it would be a traveler's dream come true to see the empty lines. that is until you come across an empty check-in counter. closed indefinitely. this airport is a ghost town. as irene lashes the coast, hundreds of thousands of travelers are stranded up and down the eastern seaboard. no planes. no trains. the faa says irene has caused more than 10,000 flight cancellations. and delays that rippled across the country. it's too soon to know exactly when the airlines will be up and running normally. but the faa says they took measures to limit damages, covering equipment in the towers. >> we were worried about coming back on sunday, if we were going to be able to leave the east coast and come home. >> reporter: passengers hoping to take to the rails aren't fairing any better. amtrak told abc news it has
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canceled more than 300 trains. and by tomorrow, all service between washington, d.c. and portland, maine, will be suspended. so far, it seems most travelers have heeded the warning to stay put and stay safe. >> bianna is with us now.w. when do the flights take off again? after irene today. if you have a ticket on a flight, monday or tuesday, you get to keep yours, right? >> right. those are canceled. the good news, is those who have tickets for yesterday, these ticket change fees are waved for most airlines. >> they still have to find an empty sese on a flight for the coming days. >> it could be days or weeks. still ahead, as we continue on a special edition of "world news" this saturday, hurricanes in the city. a tropical storm on the first floor, how fierce will be wind be on the 50th. tonight, the science behind the urban hurricane. and the side of the hurricane you don't want to be on. and one, major city bracing for that fate tonight. and "world news" anchor,
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last night, we took note of the skyscrapers being tested. tonight here, how a tropical storm on the ground level is far different 50 stories up. abc's dan harris is in lower manhattan, tonight, with this part of the story. good evening. >> reporter: david, gone to you. since hurricanes are so rare here, what we may be about to witness, is america's largest city, undergoing a massive real-time stress test, especially for the nearly 6,000 skyscrapers. new yorkers are pretty much used to watching hurricanes on tv. but when a storm of this magnitude collides with a huge, vertical city, it is a whole, new ball game. hurricanes are measured by their wind speed on the ground. but winds get much stronger as you go higher. so, let's say irene arrives as a tropical storm. the winds at the base of this building would be about 60 miles per hour. but on the 25th floor, it would be 90 miles per hour. and on the 50th floor, it would be 110 american.
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that's the same as a category 2 hurricane. experts say most of the windows should withstand the direct assault from the wind. and there's another danger, manhattan's enormous concrete canyons can act as wind tunnels. picking up debris. and those flying objects can take out a lot of windows. the biggest concern is not the wind. it's the water. in 19393 a hurricane washed away bridges in the city. and in 1821, a hurricane following a similar path to irene, covered lower manhattan with 13 feet of water. >> the 1821 hurricane, an area that was almost undeveloped. we're talking now about the world's greatest city. >> reporter: back then, we didn't have the sprawling subway system, which tonight is in grave danger, as tim fleisher of wabc explains. >> salt water is especially
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corrosive. it causes many other problems, as they try to put the world's largest transit system back online after the hurricane. >> reporter: one more note on the skyscrapers. the national weather system, put out an alert. they're seeing increasing wind speeds at higher elevations. not promising. >> a particular concern for that stress test you know is coming. dan, thank you. when we come back, the other danger this evening. the giant part of this country that's going to be on the wrong side of this hurricane, as it hits overnight. we'll go back to the map to hits overnight. we'll go back to the map to explain why.day h less chronic low back pain. imagine living your life with less chronic osteoarthritis pain. imagine you, with less pain. cymbalta can help. cymbalta is a non-narcotic treatment that's fda-approved to manage chronic musculoskeletal pain. one pill a day, every day, can help reduce this pain. tell your doctor right away if your mood worsens, you have unusual changes in mood or behavior or thoughts of suicide. antidepressants can increase these in children, teens, and young adults.
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we're back, now, as we continue to track hurricane irene. and we've taken note that the track of the storm has actually moved slightly to the west over the last 24 hours. and that will leave the city of boston on the wrong side of this storm. so, want to bring in chief meteorologists, harvey leonard, from wcvb. and you were saying, the location of boston to this track is very key hehe. >> you're right, david. let me show you why. you see from the satellite imagery, the storm is over the coast. when we switch to radar, the heaviest rain is to the west of the storm track. boston, connecticut, rhode
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island, and the cape, are going to be to the right or the east side of the storm. that's the side that has the strongest winds and the risk of the strongest storm surge on the coast. >> there's been a lot of talk about the hurricane weakening as she moves up through new england. but you say, don't be fooled by that. >> absolutely not. it's large in size. and it's moving slowly enough. there's going to be a 12-hour to 18-hour period of trap come storm-force winds. the cumulative effect will cause damage. >> 12 to 18 hours over boston and new england. as we come back tonight, as irene moves closer to manhattan, diane sawyer on the streets of new york tonight. she'll check in with us in just new york tonight. she'll check in with us in just a moment here. those micro fine, and that's where bacteria can grow and thrive. these are the very bacteria that can cause bad breath. dentists do recommend that you soak your denture in polident. polident doesn't scratch the denture surface, and it kills 99.9% of bacteria that are responsible for causing bad breath.
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[ dog ] i am an iams dog. ♪ woof. s as you know, "world news" anchor, diane sawyer, will be leading our coverage as irene hits new york city. she is out on the city with our team tonight. hey, diane. >> hey, david. we have a few holdouts around
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here. they're telling me they're going to wait until the rain starts to pour. but bloomingdale's, a landmark site, boarded up. broadway, completely shut down. it shows you what's happening here. people trying to get around in the city of 8 million people. just 5,000 taxis, soul transportation. are you going to work all night? >> yeah. >> okay. and let me tell you one more thing over here. there are 25,000 of these trash cans. and they are heavy, all around the city. they're going one by one, turnrng them on the sides. so, when the wind picks up, it doesn't fly and hit somebody in the head. there's no such thing as just a hurricane. so, watch out. >> that is so true, diane. thanks to you. diane will be here through the storm, anchoring our coverage tomorrow, and tomorrow evening right here on "world news." before we leave you tonight, something else irene is delivering, babies. at one north carolina hospital,
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they report births up some 40%. irene is moving things along. hurricane irene has already brought winds of more than 100 miles per hour today. she has also ushered in something else. babies. in this hospital in wilmington, north carolina, kristen elliot gave birth to a healthy baby girl this morning. the storm had already hit. mom will certainly have a story to tell baby parker. >> i'm just going to tell her that, you know, she was born during a very exciting time. and i guess she decided to make it even more exciting by coming during it. >> reporter: and we wondered about all of the other hurricane babies, from hurricanes past. ivan's mom will never forget when her son was born during hurricane ivan in 2004. here he is then. and seven year later, here he is today. he is living up to his name, full of energy. and we all rebecca trina. this little girl born back then. and she was named for the storm, long before the l lied broke and
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the devastation was coming in. she is now five. and her parents say she is redefining the name. >> ivan and katrina, looking good these years later. let's bring sam back in. she is a category 1. but she is moving very slowly and has been devastating already. >> i want to show an important picture to folks in the inland. from virginia to maine. this is an important radar shot. you're looking at the heaviest part of the rain, swirling onshore. these thunderstorms will be over you for about 12 hours at a time, delivering heavy hits of rain. the national weather service says some areas will get 20 inches of rain out of the storm because it is slow-moving. and so much moisture is being thrown backwards. a bic look for the track of the storm. it isn't going to change. it's working over a good part of long island and on to connecticut and beyond. david? >> that's exactly as you had forecasted it. sam champion, we'll see you in the morning. that's going to do it for "world news" this saturday.
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our team following the storm all night long at abcnews.com. the entire team in the morning. diane sawyer right here tomorrow night. have a good evening. stay safe. >> hurricane irene makes landfall, pummeling the shoreline. >> get the hell off the beach. >> a warning from new jersey's governor as that state and several others brace for irene's arrival. also -- preventing violence at candlestick park.

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