tv Today in the Bay NBC March 15, 2011 6:00am-7:00am PDT
japan faces the potential of a nuclear catastrophe. find out what's happening with a crippled nuclear power plant. >> and tokyo, evacuees are fleeing that city. >> cries for help. how the bay area is responding to the crisis in japan. i'm bob redell. that story coming up in a live report. >> it is tuesday, march 15th. as we take a live look outside in the south bay. rain in the works this week. this is "today in the bay." >> and good morning, everybody. thanks for joining us. it is straight up 6:00. i'm brent cannon? and i'm laura garcia-cannon. let's check that forecast with christina. >> good morning to you, laura and brent. we have some really active -- got an active radar for you this
morning. we're noticing more and more of those lightning strikes offshore. really ripe atmosphere out there for the formation of some thunderstorms as we head throughout today, especially this afternoon, and we are seeing quite a bit of rain moving into the bay area right now. especially san francisco getting pretty steady rain. yellows embedded here within the green. moderate rain coming down over stinson beach and getting set to hit richmond and this will slow your commute down so plan on leaving early this morning. let's check that commute right now with mike inouye. good morning, mike. >> good morning, and a look at the 680 commute, a slow down to the east, a major construction project that's going to cause slowing coming up and a look at the golen gate bridge where you're talking about the rain and the fog in the area. golden gate bridge will see the effect of that. back to you, guys. >> san francisco police are looking for whoever shot five people in the mission. investigators say one of the victims is in critical
condition. it happened just after 11:00 last night in the mission on 16th and caledonia, and "day in the bay's" christie smith spoke to the owner of where it happened. >> reporter: first of all, neighbors tell us that they heard arguing in the bar late last night and then in their words lots of gunfire, and then people spilling and scattering out into the streets. now, the front door is dotted with seven bullet holes. next door over the front door was completely shot out. the owner over there tells me that there were actually people inside when this happened and he's glad that no one inside there was hit but when police arrived they found five men down here, four with non-life-threatening injuries. one more serious injured outside the el tin tan bar in the mission. police feel this may be gang-related and feel like they are looking for at least two shooters. coming up in 30 minutes you'll hear from the owner an.
>> it appears the disaster in japan is getting worse. dangerous levels of radiation are leaking from the nuclear power plant right now. earlier today a third reactor suffered a hydrogen explosion, and a fourth reactor caught fire but it's now out. the fire was in the storage pond. japanese officials say the pond is used to cool the nuclear fuel, but right now the water might be boiling. if the water evaporates it would expose the rods, and the rods could cause a nuclear reaction. 10,000 people are being told to leave the surrounding area. the plant that is the source of the problem is several miles away from the capital city of tokyo. radiation is detected in that city but not enough so far to create any health concerns. evacuees from the north are now
headed into tokyo. >> thousands of people who are being told to get further away from the plant are flooding into tokyo this morning. many people in tokyo are now heading even further south. >> as i just mentioned, "today in the bay's" george kiriyama on special assignment in japan joins us with a will be at what's going on in tokyo. good morning. >> reporter: good morning, brent and laura. good evening from tokyo where it's been a busy night with people scrambling to escape this city as the threat of a radioactive cloud gets closer to tokyo. now just feels different here in the city known for its bright neon lights. well, they have turned them off to save on electricity, but the big story here in tokyo right now, residents and tourists fleeing the city and going to other parts of japan to stay with family and friends. the tokyo train station was busy with long lines and packed with
thousands of people leaving on the bullet tularain. parents leaving with their children, many with suitcases and bags, many prepared to stay away from tokyo for a week or two or until the situation improves. we actually bumped into someone from san francisco trying to get out of town. >> we packed for the mid-term so it will be more than a few days but no telling how long it will be. >> reporter: do you have a place to go, family? >> we'll stay at a hotel in osaka. the company is providing for that and we'll work out of the osaka office. >> i've never experienced such a thing so i don't know what to do. i just don't know. there's long lines at the store right now. i think, you know, like the panics are starting. >> reporter: and then that was yoko goldberg, a tokyo native. her mother's family is from osaka and she is prepared to stay there as long as possible. that's the latest live from tokyo. george kiriyama. back for you. >> george, yesterday, you were
telling us about how many aftershocks you felt and you are actually on the air when one of them hit during one of your reports. are you still seeing that many aftershocks, and are they still that powerful? >> reporter: we have not felt any aftershocks -- well, the last aftershock we felt was early this morning, but since then maybe it could be out and about, but as far as we know we've not heard of any other aftershocks here in tokyo today and that's probably a sigh of relief for people here in tokyo, but now they are dealing with this possible threat of a radioactive cloud and radiation in the air. >> is the mood -- are people frightened or trying to go about their lives or are they confused? >> if you saw the people leaving at the train situation, they are concerned, and we -- we captured that, and you saw that and heard that. you know, people are concerned for their children and their pets, many bringing the pets, an indication that they want to leave but everybody else seems to be business as usual, trying
to get on with their lives, but, you know, with this threat of radiation in the air they may be rethinking that, and we probably expect it as this continues, maybe even tomorrow, we may see more people living tokyo. as i mentioned before, i believe yesterday my friend has already left tokyo. she's been in nagasaki since last -- since i guess sunday so she left a long time ago. >> well, thank you very much for your reports, george, and, of course, you be safe out there as well. >> thank you. >> thank you. finding shelter has become a major issue for people who survive the quake and the tsunami. temperatures are now below freezing and a lot of people are huddling in cramped shelters trying to keep warm as best they can. this is new video and aerial views of what that devastation is like and how widespread it is. snow and sleet are now expected for tomorrow so that is not good. the official death toll is more than 2,700 now. more than 300,000 people are homeless. at least 3,700 people are still
missing but crews did pull at least one man from the rubble today so some good news. a little video of that rescue which comes five days after the initial disaster. >> and aid from the bay area is on its way to help the quake victims in japan, but as you can see from george's report the situation there, even for one of the world's most advanced and organized societies, it's very tough. requested today in the bay's" bob redell with more on how you can get involved. good morning, bob. >> reporter: good morning to you, laura. a lot of people here in the pay area that want to help. the consulate general of japan's office in san francisco has reportedly received hundreds of offers of help, so much so that that office is setting up a special website just to direct the relief effort to give people that opportunity. i googled it this morning and have not seen it online yet. we expect that it should be online very soon. there are also very several private groups organizing relief, like the japanese cultural and community center also in san francisco which is directing money to non-profits in japan to help victims buy
basic needs like food and water. we've heard about the long lines for that. diapers, they are in short supply and blankets as well. you were just mentioning. temperatures over there are cold so people are trying to stay warm. something that's very difficult and normally would you take for granted and blankets, as i mentioned, in short supply. this morning we spoke with a structural engineer in sendai, the area hardest hit by the earthquake and he gave us a pretty good sense of just how desperate things are. >> so much a shortage of the fuel and food and especially in sendai, in this area, it's tremendous, and even in tokyo we have the first hours of the blackout to save the energy, and major transportation systems are disrupted. it's amazing if you think about it how fragile the civilization is. that's just incredible, you know, and it seems to me japan
has everything organized and very advanced technology, but this earthquake is just -- just killed the whole system of the organization and this civilization with japan almost kind of stopped in a sense right now. >> we're outside one of the fire stations here in hayward where a private company has brought out their earthquake simulator. we'll fire this up shortly to show you and give you a visual sense of what an 8.0 looks like. remember, the quake that struck in japan was only an 8.9, and we'll also talk with hayward fire department to find out what they do to prepare. this, of course, being one of the areas on the hayward fault, an issue that's of deep concern for them. bob redell, "today in the bay." >> thank you very much, bob. >> didn't tracie potts tell us a short time ago that they upgraded it to a 9.30. >> and the simulators can't even
take that. >> can't even show it. want to check in with christina. locally pretty warm temperatures. a little rain but feels almost tropical out there. >> yeah. got a sub tropical connection this morning. everything to do with it and it's warm enough with enough moisture coming through. continues are conducive to the formation of thunderstorms especially this afternoon when we see the maximum heat in the 60s. right now a pretty solid line of showers pushing into the bay area. i can show you where the rain is coming down the heaviest between richmond and san bruno. yellows and deep greens embedded here. that is pretty heavy rain coming down and that will slow your commute down this morning. give yourself plenty of time if you're leaving the peninsula or headed to the peninsula from the east bay this morning. down in the south bay, pretty dry so far, but there are some pretty good showers making their way towards you as well. take a look at this batch. this will arrive in san jose here in the next half hour, maybe even 20 minutes, so get ready for slick conditions down there as well and rain will kind of be a factor throughout the
day today. the north bay is getting a bit of a break and guess what's headed your way by noon. heavy rain coming down over santa rosa. 5ks p.m., expecting a pretty good line of showers all throughout the bay area so more slow and go traffic anticipated, but at 11:00 p.m. tonight the whole thing will clear out of the area with another round of rain in store for tomorrow. 56 degrees. oakland, will turn over to 60, 62 degrees. east bay cities, won't get that much warmer and the sub tropical tap is getting things nice and mild this morning. don't need the heavy jacket. do need the windshield wipers, right, mike inouye? >> definitely. make sure they are in good working condition. fog will be a factor and also the rain. factor of all the folks on the roadway. a 21-mile-per-hour drive from at over towards l street and that 54 in big point, not unusual for a tuesday. just an indicator of more folks
coming through that area. buildup for the livermore and altamont pass. 41 in the middle, unusual to have that month slowing coming through livermore. eked is the issue. i closure of the portola avenue off ramp that happened yesterday for all time's sake. isabelle interchange project is going on there. use airway boulevard. might be a distraction and signage in the area. 880 as we end the report. see the glowing lights because of the mist and drizzle traveling through the oakland area. >> thanks, mike. 6:13 right now. still to come on "today in the bay," a simulator here in the bay area that had can show you how much of an impact an 8.0 earthquake can have. >> the tsunami caused millions of dollars of damage up and down the california coast and the new estimates on that coming up. >> and a live look outside at the golden gate bridge this morning. another wet week on tap. weer whe? en'lch whe?
we have the latest damage of the tsunami after it hit california. officials now think $40 million worth of damage was caused statewide. at least 17 million of that was in the santa cruz harbor where 18 boats sank and more than 100 were damaged and ten are still unaccounted for. the harbor is still closed today, and it may stay closed for several more days. >> most of us here in california have felt an earthquake at one time but none of us have experienced one here as powerful as the quake that just shook japan. but our bob redell is about to get pretty close. he's hive in hayward this morning. bob? >> well, we're inside what's called the big shaker. an earthquake simulator provided by a private company. set it outside t.
the one in japan was up graded to a 9.0 and the amount of damage it caused was much greater. this is what the company can do up to an 8. let's just show you what an 8.0 is. we got our deputy chief here with the hayward fire department. you get a chance to go out and about the community. how well prepared do you think people are? >> i think after an event like this has taken place in i have, it comes to the front and people are aggressively preparing themselves and then it starts to wane. over a period of time people start to pay less and less attention to it so that's the focus of ready america being here today and bringing this back to the forefront of people's concerns.
>> why do you think people will become apathetic especially in hayward. on hayward fault. a lot of people believe this fault is overdue for a massive quake, a quake that took place over 140 years ago and yet people become complacent. why is that? >> common thinking, out of sight, out of mind and if it's not readily apparent, it just falls by the wayside so very important that people pay attention and are always are prepared. >> but you believe as far a response goes which is what you'd be in charge of. >> without question. the california system is second to none in the entire world. one of the best mutual aid systems anywhere and those abilities and the plan for most fire departments and all fire departments moving forward after the event of an earthquake to get out and survey their districts and see where the immediate needs are and basically triage the community, that plan has been in place for decades. >> beautiful. >> and will work rather well.
>> reporter: thank you, chief. appreciate it. it t should be known a lot of items are strapped down, that's the difference between having something strapped down. just something to keep in mind if you haven't done that at home. bob redell for "today in the bay." >> something they set up special. people can't go to see what it's going to feel like, do you in. >> reporter: you're absolutely correct. just for demonstration purposes only. today that's the case. they do have events, but for this morning it's just for us to be out here to show you. >> a good visual reminder. thank you very much, bob. >> there it goes again. we've got to check in with christina taking a peek at what to prepare for heading out the door weather-wise. >> good morning to you. we've got some thunder occurring just off the coast of santa rosa. noise-makers off the coast this morning. kind of an unsettled atmosphere. a lot of rain coming down over the bay area right now. definitely enough to slow your commute down this morning. take a look at this line of
showers reaching all the way now from the south bay up through sacramento. see the yellows embedded. heavier rain coming down and as we head throughout the morning this will continue. really watching san jose. take a look at what's headed your way, san jose in the next ten minutes. you'll start to see your first light showers and then it will be more study as we head through the 7:00 hour so definitely give yourself plenty of time to reach the defendant nation safely. heading throughout the morning, temperatures warm enough for thunderstorms, and we're noticing some of those lightning strikes just off the coast of the north bay this morning, possibly seeing some of those move onshore as we head throughout the day today so you want to really stay alert. drive cautiously this morning. the best chance for the thunderstorms will be later on this afternoon, right around 3:00 p.m. when we see our warmest temperatures. 53 in san mateo, 56 sunnyvale and turning over to 60. 63 in fremont and 6 it in san jose and on and off showers
throughout the day. clear lake, ukiah region, travel cautiously and the further north you hive today in the bay area, the better your rain chances will be, and i think we'll pick up to maybe an inch in the north bay looking more like a quarter inch at best in the south bay. cloudy conditions for st. patrick's day. that looks like that's the day that will be the driest just in time for the holiday. back to you, guys. >> thank you very much. san jose is getting ready to pass a new city budget. we'll tell you what's happening tonight. >> twitter is very useful in a disaster and also very easy to make a jerk of yourself. we'll take a look at that. and a smooth drive 580 through castro vale. where slowingn the swin the area and effects of the weather coming in right now. more after this break.
good morning, folks, it's 6:24. live look at the golden gate bridge. buildup of traffic as you see right now and also the glowing lights. wet roads through the north bay and along the peninsula. so that rain is coming in. behind me the peninsula time. not reflecting in your travel time so far because the volume of travel relatively light through this area. see the effects of it over the next half hour to 45 minutes as christina has been talking. 20-minute drive out of the altamont pass, and clearing by the time you get to the double interchange.
toll plaza at the bay bridge, backup is forming quickly because it is a tuesday. back to you. >> thank you very much. twitter is a pretty good way to communicate during a disaster and scott mcgrew says it's also a way for people to do some things they probably shouldn't do. >> a lot of idiotic things on twit they are morning in regards to the japanese disaster, an i'm certainly not going to read any of them to you, but one making news this morning is in the form of a duck. >> hope he has insurance. >> the aflac insurance company has fired the guy who makes the duck say aflac. it's gilbert godfrey, the comedian. apparently tweeted something about japan that's in poor taste and aflac's business mostly is in japan so the voice of the duck is out this morning. they will find a new voice. a japanese game-maker has spiked a new video game that puts you in tokyo during an earthquake. it was for playstation three.
the publisher said it just wasn't appropriate for release. other things you won't see much more of. the microsoft zune. bloomberg reports this morning that microsoft's ipod killer has itself been kill. the company will wind down its zune hardware line. software will stick around so if you have music downloaded for zune which can you play on your iphone or xbox, probably the only person who did that, still the only person who can listen to it. >> a lesson somewhere. saw how much business the ipod was doing and competitors tried to build an ipod killer and now they are seeing how much miss the ipad is doing and so companies like hewlett-packard and motorola trying to build an ipad. you never know. >> such is business. >> history is not on their side. >> that is business. 6:26 right now. you can share your concerns over san jose mayor judge reed's budget plan at two meetings today. the san jose city council will hold a public hearing on the budget message.
at the end of the afternoon session today and then during the session at 7:00 tonight. the mayor's plan outlines goals for close the $105 million budget gap. some of his proposals include retirement reforms and benefit changes. the council will vote on the measure next tuesday. >> time now is 6:27. you can help the victims of the disaster in japan, and we will show you how coming up in a live report. >> and a nuclear plant crisis. find out what could happen after new fire overnight. >> reporter: violence breaks out in san francisco's mission district yet again. five people are shot. a business is also hit. i'm christie smite business own arcorotheming b uesowner comip ngin a live repop rt. [ female announcer ] you have all this chicken.
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>> reporter: i'm bob redell. see how the bay area is trying to help the victims of the earthquake in the japan. that story coming up in a live report. >> reporter: gunfire breaks out in san francisco's mission district. five people are shot near a bar, and this morning no one is under arrest. i'm christie smith. what police are saying coming up in a live report. >> and a rainy week ahead. a live look outside in east bay overlooking oakland. check the morning commute for you on this tuesday, march 15th, "today in the bay." good morning, everyone. thanks for joining us. time now 16:30. >> i'm brent cannon. >> and i'm laura garcia-cannon. let's check the forecast with christina. certainly muggy out there. >> yeah. it's muggy. rain showers coming down. even lightning strikes this morning offshore so it's really active out there, and i think
we'll see some fog start to develop up here in the north bay where you're getting a little break from the steady rain right now. the steady rain is pushing into the south bay. take a look at that little yellow cell embedded within the green. heavy rain making its way towards san jose. waking up in cities like los gatos, campbell, take it easy. 57 degrees in san jose and a look at where the temperatures are headed. i think you'll like our numbers, but i'll let you know when the rain ends as well. how is all the weather treating the roadways this morning? that's the question. >> everything you said plus more cars. 6:31 so the brunt of the commute really taking effect. slowdown on the east shore freeway and a live look at the freeway shows you the backup lights have been on seven minutes now and look how quickly that filled into a parking lot for the fast cash and passing
lanes. more coming up. >> engineers in japan are working feverishly to try to contain a radiation leak at one of the country's hardest hit nuclear plants. dangerous level of radiation are now leaking out of one of the reactors there. governments all around the world are telling their citizens to leave the country or get away from the radiation, if possible. some 70,000 people living near the plant have already left their homes. 140,000 others are in the warning area, and they are now being told to just stay inside. >> interesting because thousands of people are fleeing south headed to tokyo. people there are heading out as well. that city already dealing with shortages at gas stations, grocery stores and drug stores. "today in the bay's" george kiriyama is in tokyo and told us what it's like if you are there today. >> reporter: saw people at the train station and their concern and we captured that. you saw this and heard that. people concerned for their children and their pets. many bringing their pets with
them, an indication that they want to leave, but everyone else seems to be business as usual trying to get on with their lives, but, you know, this threat of radiation in the air, they may be rethinking that, and we probably expect it as this continues, maybe even tomorrow, we may see more people leaving tokyo. >> george is one of the only bay area reporters in tokyo. can you see his latest report on nbc bay area at 5:00 and 6:00 tonight. >> people across the bay area are doing what they can to help the victims in japan and "today in the bay's" bob redell is here now with a look at what's most need and wanted there. bob? >> reporter: good morning to you, brent. the bay area is expected to play a big role in providing relief to the people in japan, not only because people in the bay are earthquake survivors them, because this is earthquake country, but also because. connections that the bay area shares with our friends across the pacific. keep in mind, two of the three
japan towns in the united states are located right here in the bay area, one in san jose and the other in san francisco. the consulate general in japan, their office in san francisco has reportedly received hundreds of offers of help. they are getting so many offers that they are now in the process of setting up a website to direct relief efforts overseas. also several private groups that are trying to help out as well. the japanese cultural and community center, for example, is directing money to non-profits in japan to help provide basic needs. long lines for food and water, basic essentials that are definitely in short supply. diapers, for instance, blankets. also might be thinking why would they need blankets? don't forget, sendai, the area hardest hit by the quake, experiencing minus degree temperatures right now. we spoke with a structural engineer who happens to be in that part of japan. he gave us a pretty good sense of just how desperate things are over there. >> the one thing i can tell you about japan, you know, they went
through this type of disasters in the past, and i'm sure that if anyone can come back strong it will be japan, and i think that they can do that but they do need a lot of assistance though from many different countries. >> we're outside the hayward fire department where a private company has brought out the earthquake simulator, talking with the company and talking with the fire fighters here at the fire department. they said you'd be surprised just how unprepared many people here in the bay area are for earthquakes in terms of strapping things down in their homes and having their survivor kits, so this is, again, just a reminder that you do want to be prepared for 72 hours without food and water in case a big earthquake were to hit in the bay area, especially along the hayward fault which many experts believe is overdue for a big one. reporting live here in hayward, bob redell for "today in the bay." >> always a good reminder.
thanks a lot. more on the disaster including a live report on what the federal government is doing from the united states, and how you can get updates at any time on nbcbayarea.com. following an overnight shooting that happened in the heart of san francisco's mission district. it put five people in the hospital this morning. "today in the bay's" christie smith just talked to the restaurant where it happened. good morning. >> reporter: good morning to you. we've been speaking with a couple of people here, the owner, but also a couple of neighbors who tell us the same thing, that they heard arguing near the bar and then rapid gunfire. one woman who didn't want to go on camera said it sounded like a machine gun. this morning there are seven bullet holes right in the front door of the bar. just steps away next door the front door is totally shot out. the owner of the restaurant there tells us that it was actually open at the time and packed with people around 11:00 last night. thankfully, he says, no one inside was hit, but when police arrived they found five people shot, four of them with
non-life-threatening injuries, one in critical condition. politician say this may very well be gang-related which goes along with what the owner told us. he said the neighborhood here near 16th and mission has been heating up. >> it's bad. >> reporter: a lot of activity out front? >> around this area a lot of things have been happening all over here in this area. >> reporter: there was a shooting in the mission on wednesday, plus two other shootings in the area in recent weeks. police have stepped up their patrols of the area because of all this violence. and in this case they are looking for at least two shooters. there was also a car seen leaving the area, but at this point they are still unsure if it's tied to this latest shooting. reporting live in san francisco, christie smith, "today in the
bay." >> tank you. meantime, want to get you updated what's going on weather-wise. showers sparking up a little bit on christina's radar. >> yeah. that's the last thing you want right before we kick off rush hour. just about 13 minutes away from the beginning of rush hour, and we've got some pretty heavy rain coming down over the bay area. right now a solid line of showers from san francisco up to sacramento. you're going to find slick conditions, but right now my real concern is over san jose because they have been relatively dry overnight but get ready for steady rain to approach your area. if you live down in san jose or the south bay, it's moving in quick, and the showers are going to slow you down on the roadways so take it easy out there as well. don't want anybody to have any unnecessary accidents. as can you see though, once the showers kind of push on sure, they do break apart a little bit. what we're expecting today, on and off, light scattered activity. heavier periods of rain but won't last long. the shower activity will continue throughout the day today so you'll need the umbrella all day. kind of a bad day to make the
outdoor plans. 57 in hayward and 55 in livermore. turning over to the low 60s in the east bay and 63 degrees in san francisco and 36 in santa cruz. rain chances each and every day this week. i'll show you what the driest days are looking like coming up. let's get you to work right now with. with all that weather it's probably pretty rough out there, huh, mike? >> it is. the lights being turned on at the toll plaza and city side, an issue for folks getting on to 101. an accident that is in its final clearing stages now for the ninth street or civic center on ramp getting out of san francisco. that's an issue where there's slowing on the maps. getting into the city, disabled vehicle also just reported right on the end of the yellow chiclets and it should be clear in the nuke couple of minute. traffic so big they had to turn on the metering lights. a live look at the billup at the toll plaza, almost filling in the entire parking lot and wet roads will play a factor as
well. back to you, guys. >> thank you very much. >> bay area car dealerships are feeling the effects of the japan earthquake, and we will tell you how coming up. >> and next, we'll see what washington is doing to respond to the disaster in japan next in a live report. >> and a live look outside this morning from the south bay. not a lot of rain there yet, but we're keeping the track on the prthe storm as it moves acrs the bay area today. "know the species, know the stain." lanolin-free coat, i know it's an alpaca. walks in here, looks says "hey look, it's a llama!" cleaning the stain like he would a llama stain. time he's wasting. ♪ call 1-800-steemer
the instability of the nuclear reactor in japan is putting washington on edge this morning. "today in the bay's" tracie potts is live in washington, d.c. where the white house is still saying full speed ahead when it comes to pursuing nuclear power. tracie? >> reporter: at least for now, brent. the white house says nuclear power is a key part of the president's energy program. he's asked power companies to produce 80% clean energy by the year 2035. nuclear power being a big part of that. there are four new reactors scheduled to go online or at least to get approved to begin construction later this year. that approval process later this year to join the more than 100 others we already have. there are 20 more applications in the pipeline, and the white house says at this point there's no reason to move backward but to move forward with that process. but there are some here on capitol hill who dis agragree.
given what's going on in japan around the uncertainties and performance of the reactors under such a large earthquake, we need to wait and see and learn the lessons from this tragic event and then decide whether to move forward. others say that this is a reactionary point of view, and we really don't need to be making policy in the midst of all of this. bottom line, got over 100 reactors in this country that the nuclear regulatory commission says are safe, but when asked if they would be safe under an earthquake as massive as this, now upgraded to a 9.0, the head of the nrc couldn't say for sure. they are earthquake resistant, tsunami and tornado resistant, but when it comes to this size of a massive earthquake, no final word on that. >> thanks a lot. 6:44. a federal court will hear arguments today on whether san francisco's ranked choice voting system is constitution al. ranked choice lets the public mark their first, second and third picks in an election and then, if need ed, a series of
elimination rounds takes place to found a winner. the ninth u.s. circuit court of appeals will hear today's arguments. a district supervisor says the system is unfair and creates a series of small runoff elections. backers of the system says it saves the city money and stream lines the voting process. >> the ncaa basketball tournament unofficially gets under way tonight. four teams will square off to see who gets into the bracket of 64 teams. two more games are going to be played tomorrow night before the tournament really gets under way on thursday, a play-in game. 68 teams now have a shot. usc is one of the teams that will play tomorrow, despite by protest, they are still in. 19-14, can't believe it. take the bracket challenge with us. we're all making our picks. logon to nbcbayarea.com. search bracket and sign up for the bracket challenge and we can all see how we do throughout the
process. >> take you on. applications for london's 2012 olympic tickets are on sale now. the national olympic committee says it has 6.6 million tickets for sale to the public. there are now less than 500 days until the opening ceremonies. the chairman of the london organizing group says fans can actually take their time buying the tickets because all applications will be treated equally. prices range from $32 to more than $3,200. we certainly have active weather making its way towards mammoth as we speak. rain showers right now. san francisco getting a bit of a break. showers starting to thin out in your area but now the steady rain is headed towards san jose. waking up in the south bay, east bay as well, look towards some pretty slick conditions. you'll be driving through the rain to work. also picking up some lightning strikes here in the north bay just off the coast of bodega
bay, dillon beach, chances are you with hear the thunder and as we continue to warm up and a few breaks of sunshine, more thunderstorm activities as we head throughout the afternoon. the warmest time of day now that we've gone through the time change is right around 3:00 p.m. line of showers right now that will continue to push south and we'll get a bit of a break. by about noon our next round of rain starts to push into the north bay. can you see this one will carry pretty moderate showers in places like santa rosa and will fall apart as it makes its way over the main portion of the bay area by about 5:00 p.m. and then it will clear out of here by 11:00 and there's more rain on the way for tomorrow. temperatures nice and mild out there this morning. you don't need the heavy jacket but grab that umbrella. 55 degrees in livermore and 54 in san francisco and turning over to 63 degrees later on today and then tomorrow i think we'll see less in terms of the steady rain. a few on-and-off showers. thursday, st. patrick's day looks pretty good.
60 degrees by friday. back to you, brent and laura. >> sounds good, thank you. >> time now, 6:4, a look at traffic before you head out the door. >> building up behind us. >> a little bit, yeah. >> and a look at how the quake in japan is affecting business here. what some local business owners are worried about. >> also, we'll tell you about the bay area county that's willing to pay you to get rid of your lawn. >> and a live look outside the golden gate bridge. traffic not too bad. picking up a bit. once again, we'll check that commute with mike. could mean hundreds more in your wallet year after year. feed me! saving you money -- now, that's progressive. call or click today.
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despite plenty of rain this winter and good snow pack in the high county and east bay county still wants to you get rid of your it was to get rid of the water. a now program will be announced today offering rebates showing homeowners how to replace their lawns with water-friendly gardens. they say lawns account for about half of the water use for a typical home and having a sustainable garden helps conserve water. for more information logon to stopwaste.org. >> a lot of that in arizona. a lot of rocks. painted rocks sometimes to make it fancy. let's check the morning commute behind us, at the bay bridge, huh? >> that's right, brent and laura. the map, only real slowing is at the berkeley curve and a live look at the toll plaza. the backup forms as the metering lights are turned on 25 minutes ago and the signal for all the east bay commute and rush hour. a smooth drive approaching the area. more big slowing, livermore, westbound 580 coming out of the
altamomt pass. a steady build and now a 22-minute drive. westbound, lanes are clear and that's a slow commute because of the volume. eastbound, might have distractions. starting yesterday at portola avenue the ramp is closed and that will remain so because of the isabelle interchange project going on there. hopefully things will get better eventually but right now the evening commute may be confused as well. slowing through the south bay. northbound 87 at the bottom off of the 85 and coming downtown for the 280. no big surprise for the south bay, getting head with rain as well as mountainview and the bay shore freeway coming down through the area. passing by the san mateo bridge and a live look outside, smooth drive and heading into the rain so that's an issue for the folks with the tail lights and over towards 101. >> thank you very much. right now wanted to bring you live pictures of teachers, parents, school leaders. they are gathered in union city
this morning protesting cuts in education spending and teacher pink slips. this is a press conference that is going to take place in just a matter of minutes this morning. the -- the program that is on the cutting mock is some of the band members out there from the alvarado middle school, and we'll keep tabs on what's going on. protests like this will be happening in cities across the bay area all day long. 6:53 right now. $4 gas definitely here right now. another price spike pushed the spike of regular gas over that market. several bay area gas stations and aaa says the average price for regular and california still below $1 at 3.95. oakland and san jose's averages about 3.97, but average in san francisco, 4.01, and it's worth noting that yesterday hawaii became the first state to hit a $4 average for regular since 2008. >> we have a team of reporters
in japan, following the very latest there. the new concern this morning is over nuclear radiation. people are fleeing the north and heading to southern japan and "day in the day" conan nolan gave us an update a few moments ago. >> first it was the earthquake and then that horrific tsunami which potentially has claimed thousands of lives. now we're talking about a nuclear disaster, the likes of which they haven't seen here since the bombing of hiroshima and nagasaki to end world war ii this. after the third explosion in four days at one nuclear power plant and now nuclear officials here, representatives from the agency that runs the nuclear plants, they are not exactly sure what to make of what is happening in terms of the amount of exposure locally and far off. they are used to aftershocks, but they are not used to this. tokyo's famed neon lights remain dark up and down the city and in part of an effort to consume
power for the tsunami-ravaged north and now the word of a crisis has come to them at the fukushima daiichi nuclear plant 150 miles north of tokyo. families are heading to the bullet train in an effort to escape the city. reactor four at the fukushima plant caught fire with the threat of a low-level radiation leak being blown south. today's forecast indicates there will be west northwesterly winds which will below the radiation out to sea, but most of the people we talked to today are not taking any chances. not to say there's a panic here, there isn't, but this is a nation well known for being risk averse, and in this case it is appropriate. i'm conan nolan reporting live from tokyo, japan. back to you. >> thank you very much. the japan earthquake certainly being felt by bay area car dealers. many auto manufacturers in the quake-ravaged country have susspended production for at least a week. this could impact shipment of some of the bay area's most
popular cars, the toyota prius and honda fit and dealerships are worried about the supply of japanese vehicles which account for nearly half of new car sales locally. japan has a number of car plants in north america, but the majority of the parts needed for it, it's actually shipped from that country. >> of course, we want to update you on what's happening in wall street this morning because of what's going on around japan, and we're told that wall street is plummeting this morning. scott mcgrew with an update. >> dow industrials down 200 points, 230 now. toyota, you mentioned them down 9 mis. general electric which makes the nuclear power plants that we're so worried about, down another 3% this morning. dow industrials currently down 248 points. nasdaq down 64. world's largest tech company, hewlett-packard, is going to up the dividend that it pays to shareholders. that on monday's appearance by the hpc leader and before the
world press in san francisco, not enough to help hp. it's down better than 2% as we continue to watch the fires at the nuclear plant. >> and just as a reminder to you this morning. if you'd like to help people in japan donate to the american red cross. go to redcross.org or find american red cross on facebook or text redcross to 90999. each text will donate $10 to the red cross' humanitarian efforts. thanks so much for joining us this morning. the "today" show coming up next. >> and a local news update for you in half an hour. have a great morning.