tv NBC Nightly News NBC January 2, 2015 5:30pm-6:01pm PST
they lose those names. >> either way it's beautiful in yosemite. >> that's going to do it for us. on the broadcast tonight, piling up and piling on. ice, snow, and freezing rain unleash havoc on travelers from new hampshire to texas. and the worst is yet to come. bitter arctic air pushing into much of the country. retaliation. the u.s. strikes back and is now punishing north korea for its alleged cyber attack on sony. pricey prescriptions. generic drugs are supposed to be the cheaper alternative, so why are we now paying so much more for them? with or without him. u2 fans worry about the future of the band after lead singer bono makes a startling admission. and progress report. a school for children who fled one of the most dangerous places on earth is now flourishing. "nightly news" begins now.
from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with brian williams. good evening. i'm lester holt sitting in tonight for brian. we start here tonight with the weather. bad and about to get a whole lot worse making for some tough post-holiday travel. and it's already taking a big toll including two massive pile-ups involving dozens of cars on a snowy new hampshire highway. here's what we're looking at, snow to the north and midwest, freezing rains in texas extending into parts of the east this weekend. all ahead of a big arctic blast with below average temperatures already being felt across much of the country. by early next week we could see below zero temperatures in the midwest to freezing temperatures in the deep south. we begin our coverage in dallas with nbc's jacob rascon. >> i'm on scene at the north end with a tractor-trailer, got heavy smoke. >> reporter: thick black smoke interrupted heavy snow in new hampshire today after as many as
50 cars crashed in two pile-ups along interstate 93. >> it's a chain reaction occurrence from the vehicles spinning out of control. once one vehicle collides into another, it's unable to stop. >> the worst accident i've seen on 93 in my career. >> reporter: no one was seriously injured, dozens though were left stranded for hours with temperatures in the 20s. >> i can see the backup at the top of the hill. and on the ramp we have one serious crash. >> reporter: it was one serious crash after another. in north texas where the winter storm brought icy rain, accidents clogged several roadways trapping even first responders. rescue crews also got caught in a storm in missouri where slick roads sent one 60,000-pound fire engine into a ditch. the firefighters are okay. what is only the coldest time of the year for most of the country is right now much colder than usual in the south. more than 20 degrees below average today in lubbock, texas. 17 below in dallas. 15 in phoenix.
and 14 below average in oklahoma city. even the arizona desert got a rare dusting of snow to kickoff 2015. enough for a snowball fight in one neighborhood. and enough farther north to hide the red rocks of the grand canyon under a blanket of white. a colder than average start to the new year with storms already impacting most of the country and just getting started. jacob rascon, nbc news, dallas. and as we mentioned at the top of the broadcast, that could just be the beginning of what we're in for over the coming days. nbc meteorologist dylan dreyer is out on the plaza tracking it all for us. good evening. >> reporter: good evening, lester. you're right. we're looking at our first storm of 2015 bringing snow and ice all the way down to texas. we have winter weather advisories in effect through the night for an additional tenth inch of ice and one to three inches of snow, especially back toward lubbock, texas. tomorrow our focus shifts to severe storms. we're looking at a slight risk of damaging winds and isolated tornadoes across mississippi and
western alabama, especially through the afternoon. and then across the mid-atlantic tomorrow we're going to see this storm move in starting first as snow and ice through the mid-atlantic and then turning over to rain. and even parts of central and northern new england could see up to six inches in snow before it turns over to rain by early sunday morning. and then real quickly want to show you that cold air. by the time we get to sunday afternoon this arctic blast will drop temperatures down to about 25 degrees below average. highs minneapolis on sunday about 1 degree. lester, that is just a taste of what's to come. it's going to get even colder by the middle of next week. >> all right. dylan dreyer, thanks. president obama vowed a response to the cyber attack that crippled sony pictures. and tonight we know what it will be. the u.s. will target kim jong-un and other powerful officials in north korea with a new round of new sanctions. nbc's chris jansing is in honolulu where the president is wrapping up his vacation. chris, good evening. >> reporter: good evening, lester. the way white house officials
put it, north korea crossed a threshold, so today president obama signed an order for new sanctions, retaliation for both the hacking of sony and threats of violence against movie theaters that were going to show the movie "the interview," the comedy about the plot to assassinate north korea's dictator. this is the first time ever the u.s. has used sanctions in response to this kind of crime, representing a whole new opening in the cyber war. there's growing concern that the threat is escalating as potential attackers become more sophisticated and more dangerous. what's so interesting here is that the people being sanctioned weren't involved in the sony hacking itself, but they're heavily involved in getting kim jong-un what he needs for his nuclear program. and they've gotten rich doing it. administration officials say north korea can expect more repercussions given the fbi's ongoing investigation into the hacking. and they are pushing back hard against analysts who say north korea didn't do it. arguing they didn't have access to the intelligence the president used to make his decision. lester? >> chris jansing, thank you. turning now to the crash of
asia airlines flight 8501. and despite terrible weather once again hindering the search effort, crews have managed to recover several more victims. tonight, the search area has been drastically reduced in size. our report from nbc's katy tur. >> reporter: another day of rough seas and high winds as search teams recovered more than 20 bodies today. pulled from the java sea along with three large pieces of plane wreckage. but six days after the plane went missing there is still no confirmation of where the fuselage may be. investigators had hoped to be able to spot it visually in the shallow waters. now it's up to specialized acoustic equipment to listen for pings from the black boxes. >> currently we have about a three-week window left for the pingers for the cockpit voice recorder and the flight data recorder. once the weather calms down, the odds go up exponentially. >> reporter: the same strategy searchers tried unsuccessfully to find malaysia air 370.
at a press conference today news of an oil slick found in the search zone. [ speaking in a foreign language ] >> reporter: i can confirm about the oil spill, he said, but i -- he could not confirm any sign of the rest of the plane. and today three more bodies were identified. among them flight attendant hadir fauzi. meanwhile at the captain's home in surabaya his wife sits quietly, receiving condolences. how are you doing? >> fine. >> reporter: friends say she's been holding on to hope that her husband is still alive. among those paying their respects today, flight school classmates, friends for 30 years. >> the first time we cannot accept what happened. but now we realize it's the god, the god has to do this. >> reporter: prayers too for the weather to clear and for the search to finally yield some answers.
irianto's flight school friends tell us he was a fighter pilot before he went into commercial aviation. lester, he leaves behind an 8-year-old son who still thinks his dad is at work. >> katy tur in indonesia, thank you. the lines were even longer than usual at the dmv in california today. this is the first day that undocumented immigrants can apply for a state driver's license if they show proof of identity and residency. hundreds waited for hours. the first among 1.4 million expected to apply in the next three years. nine other states also allow undocumented immigrants to drive. it's shaping up to be a very challenging flu season. already 36 states report widespread flu. and we haven't reached the peak yet. sadly the epidemic is already blamed for 15 pediatric deaths. dr. natalie azar is monitoring it all and joins us tonight. doctor, how serious has this become? >> reporter: lester, it's become serious for a number of reasons. first of all, we're seeing the
designation of this particular season as an epidemic rather early in the season. we're seeing a mismatch with the vaccine and also seeing a more virulent strain of h3n2 influenza, so much so that entire school districts have had to close. i think the vulnerable population we always speak of, elderly, pregnant women and also young children, i think it's important to remind parents, again, of the warning signs that they should look for in their children who've started to become sick. these would be a bluish skin tone to the lips, for example. any difficulty breathing, that is using their accessory muscles, neck muscles to breathe. they can't keep down solids or liquids for more than 24 hours, they could become dehydrated, may become dizzy, confused. and certainly if symptoms get suddenly better and then suddenly worse, associated with cough and fever, we would worry about pneumonia. importantly, always remembering 24 hours without a fever before you go back to school or work. >> dr. azar tonight, thank you. senator harry reid is now
the outgoing majority leader is recovering tonight from injuries he received in an accident at his nevada home. reid was working out on new year's day when his office says a piece of equipment broke and caused him to fall. he broke several ribs and some bones in his face. the senator tweeted his thanks to well-wishers today and says he's ready to get back to work. he's expected to be in d.c. when the new congress is sworn-in on tuesday. rock superstar bono has been sidelined from the stage and studio since a november bike accident. since then fans have been sending wishes for his recovery, but in a 6,000-word message he shared online, bono revealed his fear that his talents may be forever affected. our report tonight from nbc's anne thompson. ♪ >> reporter: on the opening track of u2's new album, bono plays guitar for what may be the last time. today, on the band's website he
reveals recovering from his biking accident in central park is harder than he ever thought. as i write this, it is not clear that i will ever play guitar again. the band have reminded me that neither they nor western civilization are depending on this. ♪ one love ♪ >> reporter: it is his voice, not the guitar that made him a global rock star. it's that sound as a window into his soul. today a multimedia glimpse of the life that is so much more than rock and roll. there's an x-ray of his now-titanium elbow, broken in the accident along with his shoulder, face, hand and his irish pride. bono was wearing lycra cycling shorts, yes, lycra, this is not very rock and roll. jimmy fallon's impersonation when u2 canceled the "tonight show" was a better bono than i could ever be, writes the rocker. ♪ and he thanks bruce springsteen for stepping in for him on world aids day.
with a healthy dose of self-deprecating humor, bono muses about his family music, and his marriage to wife allie. marriage he writes is a grand madness. it's like jumping off a very tall building and discovering you can fly. as for the music, bono says u2 lives to be live and plans to be again in may, with or without his guitar. anne thompson, nbc news, new york. still ahead tonight, if you're used to filling prescriptions with generic drugs, you may be in for a shock when you see your next receipt. also, the new rule about what you're allowed to carry onto an airplane.
the sky-high price of certain prescription drugs has led many of us to seek out cheaper generic alternatives. same benefits, lower cost, at least in theory. except maybe you've noticed over the past year or so many generic drug prices have skyrocketed. our report tonight from nbc's kate snow. >> reporter: cindy jackson takes about a dozen pills every day for her heart. ten are generics including one drug she started in may. >> when we went to the drugstore to pick it up, they said that will be $398, i was like, oh, no. >> reporter: a year before that drug cost about $85. and the digoxin used to cost her $5 a month. now it's three times as much. >> my husband had to get a second job on the weekends to help pay for the medicine.
>> reporter: she's not alone. nearly half of generic medications increased in price in a year. some dramatically. one migraine medication spiked 700% in six months. a common antibiotic up more than 8,000%. jackson's local pharmacist sees it every day. >> seems almost every week, you see some products, well-used products jumping for no reason. >> reporter: after complaints from constituents congressman elijah cummings requested a hearing. what's driving the costs up? >> greed, i believe it's greed. let me make it clear. it's not all the generic companies, but there are others who are buying up a company, buying up a drug. and then they turn around and say, okay, we can make a lot of money on this drug. >> reporter: not true, says ralph, president of the generic pharmaceutical association. >> there have been some increases, but if you put them in context, you're still basically talking pennies
compared to the expense of brand medicines. >> reporter: if a medicine has gone from 34 cents a day to $7.46 a day, that's a big increase for people. how does that happen? >> it happens sometimes because there can be drug shortages, there could be supply problems around the world, there could be a whole bunch of market forces. >> reporter: market forces cindy jackson can't control for medicine she has to take. >> you can't pick and choose what medicine you're going to take when it comes to your heart. >> reporter: with her husband working catering jobs on the weekend, they're paying the bills, for now. kate snow, nbc news, washington. we're back in a moment with something that's been disappearing from american homes. american homes. m american homes. a american homes. n american homes. y american homes.
dropped between 30,000 and 40,000, according to the associated press. the reason, fewer kids are interested in playing the keys. and many who do go for cheaper options like electronic keyboards. this next story will not apply to a piano, but if you play a guitar, or say a violin, listen up. if you're flying, the department of transportation will now allow you to put small instruments in the overhead bin, but just like any other carry-on, it's first come, first serve, meaning get on the plane early if you want to claim space for your french horn. boarding group five won't work. the rule takes effect in 60 days. actress donna douglas has died. she will forever be known to the generation as the bubbly ellie may clampet on the classic sitcom the beverly hill billies. also co-starred with elvis presley in the 1966 film frankie and johnny. she was 81 years old. the political world has lost a figure who loomed large for decades.
three-term former new york governor mario cuomo, once a star of the democratic party, died on new year's day at the age of 82. nbc's harry smith takes a look back. >> reporter: mario cuomo passed away hours after his son andrew was sworn-in for his second term as governor of new york. >> my father is in this room. he's in the heart and mind of every person who is here. >> reporter: mario cuomo was the son of the american dream, who -- whose parents came through ellis island with little more than the clothes on their backs. a liberal in every sense, cuomo was first elected governor in 1982. >> we won because people and the passion of belief are still more important than money. >> reporter: two years later he electrified the democratic national convention in san francisco. his words aimed at president ronald reagan. >> there is despair, mr. president, in the faces that you
don't see, in the places that you don't visit in your shining city. >> reporter: thereafter many a democrat yearned for a cuomo presidential run. >> he's kind of the italian stallion of democratic party politics at the moment. >> reporter: but cuomo never ran for president. and after he lost his bid for a fourth term as governor did not serve in public office again. >> i've surely made mistakes as governor, but i'm as proud as i can be of what we have accomplished together. >> reporter: cuomo was a progressive without apology, whose legacy will also include -- always include the question of what might have been. harry smith, nbc news, new york. when we come back, young students who escaped the unimaginable found a brighter future.
extreme violence has forced millions to flee. displaced from home they found sanctuary at a school just for them across the border where nbc news has followed their progress over the last year. tonight, we see how the school's efforts are making a difference. the story tonight from nbc's keir simmons. >> reporter: her name is hazel.
she gives her students more than a diploma, she gives them hope. without it, she says, they have a bleak future. >> everyone here would be a criminal or he will be -- >> reporter: only 63, a pharmacist from montreal, she started out the school when war broke out in her native syria. all of the children are refugees. >> we're trying to make them future leaders. >> reporter: she started two years ago with 300 students. now she has 2,000. she has time for every child. >> the whole world let them down. nobody is helping them. >> reporter: some are helping. two syrian-americans organize mentoring trips. >> they can learn new skills. >> reporter: this is their third visit to the school. leaving for home brings tears. >> we're going back to our lives in america. we tell them stay positive, being a syrian refugee is not
going to limit your possibilities. >> reporter: this year nbc news has documented these children's lives. in june 9-year-old nadra whose syrian school was bombed had her first day back in class. six months later she is back at her refugee home. mom has to work so she has to look after her sisters and brother. that's why even after a long day hazar makes home visits. urging families to get their kids educated. she buys 12-year-old rasim a bike to shorten his hour-long walk to class. but she insists she's not extraordinary. >> broofo bravo, bravo! >> wow. oh, no. i'm not. >> reporter: her children are. >> i see in their eyes they come running to the school in the morning, dancing, singing. i think they deserve everything i'm giving them. >> reporter: keir simmons, nbc news, turkey. that's our broadcast for
this friday night. thank you for being with us. i'm lester holt sitting in tonight for brian. i'll see you in a couple hours on "dateline" and all this weekend. we hope to see you back here again monday as well with brian. have a great weekend, everybody. goodnight. very cold. we knew we were going on the ferry today so i have to wear something that will be warm enough for us. >> right now at 6:00 the bitter cold. the bay area just can't seem to shake it. a live look at fremont where temperatures are starting to drop again. tonight many are wondering when will it warm up? good evening and thanks for joining us. i'm janelle wang. raj and jessica are off. no doubt about it 2015 is off to a chilly start. this is what it looks like in san francisco on your left san jose on your right, another crisp night.
chief meteorologist jeff ranieri, tracking a new freeze warning. >> the freeze warning covers at least 50% of the bay area. you can see temperatures are again dropping right now with 41 down in los gatos, 48 in san jose 42 in walnut creek. the coldest right now, napa at 39 degrees. we'll take you to the north bay. that really is the chiliest widespread temperatures right now. also 41 in novato. 44 currently in mill valley. so as we continue throughout tomorrow morning on your saturday marin, napa sonoma counties under freeze warning. temperatures will range 27 to 32 degrees. the second zone under the freeze warning is contra costa county. also alameda county as we have been mentioning are you want to cover sensitive plants and bring the pets inside. temperatures not expected to be in the teens, probably won't have too many problems with pipes at this point. you can see on the wind future cast this is our next problem. this huge dome of cold air sitting across california. there's not a whole lot of motion in the atmosphere. so calm winds