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tv   NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt  NBC  October 16, 2015 5:30pm-6:01pm PDT

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heading out. >> part of the fun, right? the risk? >> swimming faster. >> bye. tonight, extreme danger coast to coast. mudslides bury a california highway, trapping drivers in cars. a massive wildfire torches homes in texas. and the first freeze of the season, maybe even snow, is coming for millions in the northeast. 9/11 controversy. donald trump putting part of the blame on the 9/11 attacks on former president george w. bush. and tonight the furious reaction from brother jeb. and reports tonight that lamar odom is awake and breathing on his own and even spoke following days of uncertainty after his collapse. and flu season is coming. the major push from the cdc to get everyone vaccinated. but how effective will the shots be this year?
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"nightly news" begins right now. good evening. we begin tonight from just above our los angeles newsroom. a large part of southern california and nevada are for a second evening under flash flood watches after thunderstorms triggered a massive earth slide burying cars and trucks under five feet of mud. the images are stunning and the stories harrowing, and hundreds left stranded. some trapped in cars after heavy rains in the deserts outside of l.a. turned the ground to a boulder filled soup and closed down 40 miles of the busy interstate 5 which connects northern and southern california. miguel almaguer is about an hour north of us in lake hughes where people are trying to dig out before the next rain comes. >> reporter: this was the moment of impact. torrential rain,
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pounding hail, waves of water. panic and chaos for hundreds stranded on the road as flash flooding triggered fast-moving mudslides. many in a desperate scramble to stay alive. >> help! >> it is just the most frightening thing to see. a mountain of mud just comes barreling down on you. >> reporter: in just one hour, six inches of hammering rain. the deluge swamping homes and highways. interstate 5, one of the busiest and most vital freeways shut down. portions buried under five feet of mud. >> i must have pulled out 10, 15 cars, pulled out another 15-20 today. >> reporter: the gridlock snaking for miles just as school was letting out. 120 fourth graders rescued from their bus, sleeping in a gym, no place to go. other children were trapped at school. >> it is pretty scary. and then all of the
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water just flooding the streets. >> reporter: today, after the mayhem, semis buried on the highway, cars gone. it is still too early to know the true extent of the damage. yesterday many left vehicles on the side of the road when the floodwater was just rising and this is what it looks like today. bulldozer moved in to clear blocked roads. firefighters going door-to-door checking on the stranded, assessing the damage. >> it is all the way through. >> reporter: kelly coleman is cleaning up three feet of mud. >> how bad is the damage? >> you have to ask my land lady. i think it is a complete loss. >> reporter: tonight while the storm system is not connected to el nino, the swift damage is such a short window is what is headed our way this winter say forecasters.
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a developing storm delivering a forecast calling for even more rain. when you see elizabeth lake road, which literally turned into a lake, it is incredible to realize no one was injured or killed in this area. the mud here is still stacked 12 feet high in some areas. this vehicle was pushed off the road. and adding insult to injury, lester, this entire region is under a flood warning tonight and could be hit with round two. lester. >> miguel almaguer in lake hughes. to the east of there in texas, a growing disaster of a different kind. a ferocious wildfire that has burned dozens of homes and other buildings to the ground. and again today hot and dry weather conditions fanning the flames. nbc's kerry sanders is on the fire lines where hundreds of firefighters are now on the attack. >> reporter: on day three, no let-up. but now a clear picture of the devastation. gone, more than 40 homes. incinerated in this fast-moving fire. those among the last to evacuate could hear the blaze hitting homes. >> some people have guns and ammo, like i do, and you could hear all of the ammo going
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off and it sounded like fireworks. so you know they were burning houses then. >> reporter: today, with 30 volunteer firefighters on the ground and the national guard overhead, a d.c. ten that can drop 12,000 gallons of fire retardant. we joined this deputy in the hardest hit areas. he said most evacuated, but not all. >> a lot of people are pretty lucky. >> lucky because? >> they actually survived the fire and everything. but it is not over. >> reporter: this community knows what it is to lose everything in a horrific wildfire. four years ago bastrop, texas, was hit by the worst fires in the state's history. more than 1600 homes destroyed and three people died. tonight they hope this is put out before that record is challenged. lester. >> kerry sanders. thank you. more weather whiplash on way. at both ends of the
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country. including more rain here in the west and the first real cold blast of the season in the east. al roker is monitoring it all for us in new york. al, lay it out for us. >> lester, here you go. you can see on the radar, heavy thunderstorms firing up in southern california and spreading to arizona and new mexico and that is what we're watching over the next 48 hours. through sunday, all of the pacific moisture, flash flooding is likely and the threat now includes arizona and nevada. we have flash flooding watches from california all the way into colorado. watches from california all the way into colorad watches from california all the way into colorad watches from california all the way into colorado. we're going to be watching this very closely. rainfall rates of 1-2 inches per hour. this includes phoenix, tucson and las vegas. plus we have a big change coming. big massive arctic air dropping out of canada. 57 million people under some sort of flood -- i should say frost freeze advisory. temperatures from 10-20 degrees below average through sunday morning and to add insult to injury,
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lester, we're looking at snow into new england and parts of upstate new york. some areas could be looking by sunday morning, 1-3 inches, lester. >> al, thank you very much. back inside with other news. including the scary scene in houston when a massive scaffolding collapsed at an apartment complex under construction. at least six workers were rescued and placed on stretchers and rushed to the hospital. none of the injuries are considered life-threatening. no word yet on what caused the collapse. with one controversy seemingly settled, donald trump has ignited a new firestorm. the front-runner minced no words when he suggested that former president george w. bush is partly to blame for the 9/11 attacks, something that did not sit well with his republican rival jeb bush. nbc's katy tur has late details. >> reporter: donald trump once again speaking his mind, taking on george bush over 9/11. in an interview with bloomberg news. >> when you talk about
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george bush, say what you want, the world trade center came down during that time. >> hold on. you can't blame him. >> he was president. don't blame him or don't blame him. but he was president and the world trade center came down during his reign. >> the front-runner using the 43rd president to needle jeb bush in the past calling the iraq invasion a mistake. this afternoon, jeb fired back, tweeting trump was quote, pathetic and his brother kept us safe. late thursday we got a peek into the mogul's unusual campaign financials. >> i'm much richer. >> reporter: of the leading candidates, he spent the least between july and september at 4.2 million, compared to hillary clinton $25.8 million. among the top expenses, and half a million for the make america great again hats and shirts. but perhaps the most notably, despite what he repeatedly says -- >> i'm self-funding my campaign. okay. i'm the only one. >> reporter: donald trump is spending more
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donors' money than his own. am the millionaire hasn't put any cash in his campaign since june. bringing in 3.9 million from donors averaging $50. >> he's speaking for me. that is my money. i want him to spend my money. >> the only candidate with the higher percentage of cash from small donors is bernie sanders. meanwhile, jeb bush continues to struggle pulling in a disappointing $13 million. katy tur, nbc news, new york. >> on the democratic side, sources say vice president joe biden wants breathing room to make his decision on running even as his team appeals to supporters not to give up on him. but hillary clinton's latest poll numbers have many asking did biden wait too long to make up his mind. we get our report from andrea mitchell. >> reporter: has the window closed for joe biden? he was camera shy today but does he owe it to fellow democrats to decide soon?
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>> i think you can direct those questions to my very able vice president. >> reporter: but biden sent a personal message to former aide through former senator ted kaufman who wrote he is determined to take and give his family as much time as possible to work this through. he signed off, if he decides to run, we will need each and every one of you yesterday. advisers tell nbc news his signal to supporters is the door is not closed. to rivals, stop the pressure and back off. hillary clinton in new hampshire today was asked by biden by cnn. >> there does come a point where a decision has to be made but i'm not in any way suggesting or recommending that the vice president accept any time table other than the one that is clicking inside of him. >> reporter: is it too late? after her debate performance, clinton has inched ahead in a new hampshire poll. and in an nbc survey monkey online poll nationally, clinton has a double-digit lead. does have bill there
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-- does having bill clinton there help her? >> we celebrated our 40th anniversary on sunday last, so the fact he could come and keep me company and keep my spirits up and drill me on some of the things he thought were important meant a great deal to me. >> reporter: to jake tapper? >> i'm not going to sit here and tell you and your viewers that it has been a path filled with rose blossoms, it is -- it's been challenging. but looking back at the 40 years, i'm so grateful that after he asked me twice i finally said yes and have spent these years with him. >> reporter: some supporters argue that biden is better off waiting since once he declares for president he has to pay for air force two and with the crew a whopping $43,000 an hour on a political trip, a huge burden for a fledgling campaign. lester. >> thank you. breaking developments concerning the condition of former nba and reality tv star lamar odom.
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after days in a coma fighting for life, in a las vegas hospital, word is that he is awake. nbc's jacob rascon is at the hospital. tell us what you've learned? >> reporter: sources close to odom tell our sister network he is off of life support and breathing on his own. he woke up and spoke for the first time in three days. on tuesday, odom was found unresponsive at a brothel in rural nevada after an apparent drug overdose. family and friends rushed to his side, including his estranged wife khloe kardashian and former teammate kobe bryant. doctors found melt pull drugs in his system and he suffered a stroke and brain damage and was in a coma. while many are calling the improvement in his condition remarkable, his mother-in-law kris jenner released a statement saying he is still in very, very critical condition. lester. >> jacob rascon, thank you. a michigan family has filed a federal lawsuit over a traffic stop gone wrong. a teenager was pulled over and defied the
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officer's orders. their confrontation was caught by cameras escalating out of control until the unarmed driver was dead. we get our report from rehema ellis. >> reporter: it was a routine traffic stop. 17-year-old devon gillford was stopped by sergeant frost. the exchange was recorded on frost's body cam. >> i was going to crash. you had your brights on, sir, i'm not lying to you. >> frost asked repeatedly for gillford's documents. >> reporter: eventually gillford admitted he didn't have the license and when he refused to get out of the car, the officer tried to arrest him. >> get your hands behind your back. >> officer, what are
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you doing? >> frost fires his stun gun. they fought. frost shot the unarmed teenager seven times and killed him. the deputy was treated for facial injuries. after an investigation, the county prosecutor decided not to file charges against frost and determined that the sergeant used his firearm within the limits of michigan self-defense law. but this week, gillford's parents filed a federal civil lawsuit against frost and eton county saying the officer's action was illegal and in violation of devon's constitutional rights. >> it would have been more appropriate for the facts to be brought in front of a jury to ultimately decide. >> a motorist, when stopped by a police officer, should comply with the police officers' question and -- police officer's request and should definitely not become argumentative. >> today the sheriff's office called it a tragedy for everyone involved. this case once again highlighting the national debate over confrontation with police and the use of force. rehema ellis, nbc news, new york.
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nbc news has learned the federal government will announce a new plan within days that will require anyone who buys a drone to register it with the department of transportation. the government has been very concerned about the rise in close-calls between unmanned drones and manned aircraft flying in and out of the nation's biggest airports. the regulations could be in place by christmas. there is more to tell you about tonight. it is that time of the year. the cdc launching a campaign for you to get your flu shot but last year's vaccine missed the mark. only 20% effective. will this year protect you and your family better this season. and the sport growing in popularity. teams dogs and owners up for a game of extreme fetch. it looks like a lot of fun.
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just as parts of the country are expected to get their first blast of cold weather this weekend, the centers for disease control making a push for americans to get their flu shots and it might be a tougher job convincing people they're normal after last year it proved only to be 20% effective. tom costello has details. >> reporter: mid-october and the push is on. at this location in delaware, doctors and nurses and hospital staff are lining up for the flu vaccine. this first manager has a 3-year-old noah at home and is eight months pregnant. >> i don't want to bring anything from the hospital, any more
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germs to my family. >> reporter: with 11,000 employees, christiania care is keenly focused on getting the employees vaccinated. last year the vaccine proved to be a poor match for the flu strain. not this year. >> the components have been shifted to match what is currently circulating and we expect the vaccine to work much better than last year. >> reporter: but it can take two weeks for the vaccine to provide protection. all the more reason, said this medical director, to vaccinate before flu season hits in a few week. >> so when you have the flu, you are contagious a day before you develop symptoms. >> before you develop symptoms? >> yes. so you don't know you have the flu and you can transmit it to other folks. >> reporter: one common misconception, the vaccine itself can give you the flu -- but not true. the cdc says the flu leads to hundreds of thousands of hospitalizations and complications lead to thousands of deaths, most of them among the elderly. vaccinations are most important for children
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over six months, anyone 50 and over or with a chronic condition and pregnant women. and new moms like dominique johnson, just a few days old, babies like jayla are vulnerable to the flu, making her mom's vaccine all the more important. tom costello, nbc news, washington. we're back in a moment with the end of an era for a well-known airline, flying off into the sunset.
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the philippines is bracing for impact from a massive typhoon. the monster storm could pack winds of 105 miles per hour by sunday morning when it is expected to make landfall, the capital manila may get a direct hit. last year it left over $100 million in damages in the philippines. yet another in 2013 left thousands of people dead. a farewell flight as airline consolidation continues and another big name goes away. u.s. airways has begun a round trip journey
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between philadelphia and san francisco. the last under the u.s. airways name. before all future flights will be branded as american airlines following the merger two years ago. and it is mets versus cubs and royals versus blue jays in major league championship series. no matter who ends up winning, somebody's long world series drought is coming to an end. the jays haven't won since 1993 and the royals since 1985 and the mets haven't won since 1986. and if you need to be reminded, cub fans, they haven't won since 1908. when we come back, they are off and running and the fur is flying as a serious canine competition gets underway. city by city.... we break down
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where the biggest water wasters live. ===take vo peg=== plus, a new record in space. an astronaut just did something... no american has ever done before. ===next close=== next. it isn't westminster but it is an all-out canine competition that contestants, both four-legged and two-legged owners take very seriously. here is nbc's kevin tibbles. >> reporter: this, my friends, is canine chaos. think fido on 100 cups of coffee. high octane hounds competing at the north american fly ball championships in indianapolis.
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a city that knows about speed. >> this is serious stuff. >> reporter: so what is fly ball? it is a steeple chase of sorts. two teams of four dogs each going muzzle to muzzle, tearing up the course. hurdling the hurdles and then pushing a trigger to release a ball. that is the tricky part. let's switch to the doggy cam for a closer look. even slow motion, the ball is returned and the relay continues and, man, is it fun to watch. >> the top athletes and everyday home pet can do it. >> of course, like me and sports, some dogs prefer to watch it on tv. >> reporter: you would be wrong in thinking fly ball lives in obscurity. there is more than 400 clubs and 6500 competing dogs in canada and the united states. and when it is over everyone is dog tired, of course. >> you don't make a penny.
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it is all will little ribbons. a little ribbonsb little ribbonsou little ribbonst little ribbons. >> reporter: from florida, and then time to unwind and celebrate and wag a few tails and knock back some of the famous dog treats. kibbles. kevin tibbles. nbc news, chicago. evacuated. the reason they had that breaking news on the peninsula tonight. an entire senior center evacuated. the reason they had to get everyone out and why it will take hours before they can go back to normal. >> we'll get to that story in a minute. we want to tell you about a list do you not want to be on. water wasters are getting a big wake up call. they have released names and
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addresses of the top water users and there are some familiar faces on that list. jodi hernandez is live in alamo where a will the of people made that list. it's not a list you want to be on. >> reporter: it definitely isn't. nearly 200 houses are right here in alamo. while many people have heeded the warnings and let the lawns go dry as these folks here have, not everybody is doing their part. now their neighbors know exactly who they are. >> i've done all i could because you could see my lawn is not looking too good. my backyard is completely dead. >> reporter: he's been working hard to conserve water. his lawns are dry and showers have been short. >> i thought everyone was doing their part. >> reporter: turns out one of the neighbors hasn't been so water conscious. the owner of this alamo house is the second biggest water

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