tv ABC World News With Diane Sawyer ABC October 31, 2011 6:30pm-7:00pm EDT
this is "world news." tonight, trapped on a plane. how did it happen? more than 100 people, seven hours, no food, no water, no restrooms. even a diabetic unable to get help. and jetblue blames the snowstorm, while passengers say, not good enough. halloween canceled? cities call off trick or tre treating across the snow-blasted east. >> halloween has been rescheduled for november 4th. cain fights back. the gop front-runner denies accusation of sexual harassment more than a decade ago, calling it a witch hunt, singing a hymn. ♪ he looked beyond made in america. how to get tourists from other countries to spend $600 billion right here in america. and spy games.
new fbi tapes of that sleeper cell of russian spies, trading secrets at starbucks and macy's? good evening and a good new week to you. and in the middle of the mess of a snowstorm on the east coast this weekend, an outrage. the kind of problem for airline passengers we thought had been fixed. 123 people trapped on a plane on a tarmac near a gate for more than seven hours, rescued by the fire department after the pilot beggeded for someone to help them get off. we had so many questions about all of this today, why passengers, including some with illnesses were blocked from getting out of the plane. and abc's lisa stark brings us the first answers tonight. >> reporter: this is what greeted passengers when they finally escaped their parked planes. a foot of snow and a long walk. >> we've been here now for seven
and a half hours. >> reporter: that was the captain of jetblue flight 504 with 123 passengers. one of those planes stuck in the snowy tarmac at the hartford, connecticut, airport. >> chaotic. uncomfortable, disorganized. just a mess. >> reporter: andrew carter was on that flight, normally a two-houg jog from florida to new jersey. but the plane couldn't land after newark after the airport lost critical navigation equipment. the pilots diverted to the hartford airport, 100 miles away. jetblue says that airport was overwhelmed with nearly two dozen over diverted flights. and today, we learned why the passengers were trapped. flight 504 was boxed in on the tarmac. a delta plane behind, another jetblue flight to the right, a broken jetway on the left. inside the plane, snacks and water ran out, toilets backed up. >> i have a paraplegic on board that needs to come off.
i have a diabetic that's got an issue. i just got to get some help. >> though the airport was overwhelmed, there should have been a plan to be able to get the passengers off the plane. >> is there any way you can get a tug and a tow bar out here to us and get us towed somewhere to a gate or something? i don't care. take us anywhere. >> reporter: a nightmare that jetblue teenagers experienced before, during another storm in 2007, which helped convince the government to ban long tarmac delays. and it did take fire and rescue to get those poor passengers off of that flight. jetblue now faces possible government fines of $3.4 million for that one lengthy tarmac delay alone. millimeters more for other flights and other airlines are under investigation, as well. diane? >> all right, lisa, thank you tonight. and now we have more on that monster storm, which left the east with fallen trees, broken power lines all across the
region. millimeter millions without power tonight. hundreds of schools closed, neighborhoods turned into a hazard for trick or treaters. abc's linsey davis is out in the snow. and is that a power line near you tonight, linsey? >> reporter: good evening to you, diane. a true fright night throughout much of the northeast. just take a look at this tree, dangling precariously across the road. the only thing holding it up right now? these power lines. but what makes this especially dangerous, as you saw just a few seconds ago, cars are still driving underneath it. frightening images from an historic storm. a massive tree slams down onto this house. tree limbs, weighed down by snow on top of green leaves, collapse into power lines. sparking up the night sky and knocking out power. the storm is being blamed for at least 12 deaths. and tonight, 765,000 customers
here in connecticut alone are spending halloween in the dark. 81-year-old jean p peterson is one of them. >> this is hanging from the edge of the garage roof. >> reporter: with power lines dangling in her back-yard, she's drinking three-day-old coffee and peanut butter and jelly sandwiches. it's colder in here than it is outside. >> yes, it is. >> reporter: with states of emergency declared across the region, tonight, towns are making the painful decision to call off halloween. too dangerous for children to be out with downed power lines and trees. in bloomfield, new jersey, the automatic calls went out to break the news. >> halloween activities have been canceled for this evening. halloween has been rescheduled for friday, november 4th, 2011. >> reporter: still, some children would not be deterred. trick or treating at a new haunt. the mall.
>> i like it outside a little better. >> i'm okay with it. >> i'm happy to be in the mall. >> reporter: initially, 3 million people were without power. initially 3 million were without power as a result of this storm. that number is now down to about 2 million. diane? >> a lot of people out there wrestling with their power. i don't note about moving halloween to november 4th, but thanks to you, linsey. and now we turn to a turbulent day of politics. your voice, your vote. at the center of it, herman cain. as this day began, he came under fire, facing news reports about allegations of sexual harassment in his past. as the day ends, he's been challenging the press, singing a hymn and swinging back. abc's jon charl hkarl has the s. >> reporter: he's the center of attention now. herman cain is on top of the polls but he's facing the first crisis of his campaign.
>> as a result of today's big news story, i really know what it feels like to be number one. >> reporter: the allegation, first published by politico, is that he sexually harassed two women back in the 1990s, when he was the head of the national restaurant association. a few specifics include conversations filled with innuendo and asked questions of a sexually suggestive nature and invited one of the women to his toe tell suite. speaking at the national press club, cain called it all a witch hunt. >> i have never sexual little harassed anyone. >> reporter: he said that he had been falsely accused and that an internal investigation cleared him of wrong doing. >> i am unaware of any sort of settlement. i hope it wasn't for much because i didn't do anything. >> reporter: but in an interview to air tonight on fox news, cain said there was a settlement of about three months salary. was standing close to her and i made a gesture, you're the
same height as my wife and brought my hand, didn't touch her, up to my chin and said, you're the same height as my wife because my wife comes up to my chin. my wife of 43 years. and that was put in there as something that made her uncomfortable, as part of the charge. >> reporter: in washington today, cain seemed to be taking it all in stride. closing out an appearance at the national press club with a little gospel singing. ♪ i'll never know why jesus came ♪ ♪ to love me so >> reporter: now that may have been a first for the national press club. as for cain's wife, she stays out of the limelight and rarely appears in public, but cain told abc news today that she is traving with him here today in d.c. and has been surprised by how the story has been told. his wife, diane, he told us, supports him 100%. >> okay, jon, thank you so much for that tonight. and for almost a year, we at
"world news" have been reporting on the growing drug shortages in this country. che chemotherapy drugs, heart medications, even those crash cart drugs used in emergencies. well, today president obama took action, signing an executive order, no congressional approval necessary, to force drug companies to take action when there's a shortage of the horizon. the most immediate change, a crackdown on price gouging due to the shortages, and that will kick in, starting tomorrow. and you'll remember it was a jaw-dropping headline, straight out of a tom clancy novel. a sleeper cell of russian spies living and working out of the u.s. suburbs. one of them, a glamorous woman posing for provocative photos. and it led to the biggest spy swap since the cold war. well, today, the fbi released their tapes, showing the spies in action. here's abc's pierre thomas. >> reporter: russian spies in america, conducting convert
missions to steal defense secrets, in broad daylight. watch as one spy meepts another in a long island railway station. nay make a quick handoff, right there. the transaction? $300,000 and a computer disc. remember russian femme fatale anna chapman, the spy who clubbed at new york city's trendiest spots? watch her go to work using james bond hi-tech. there's chapman, hanging out in a department store but she's using a hidden computer to transmit an encrypted message to this russian spy outside. >> these were the cream of the crop, hand picked out of the russian intelligence academy. >> reporter: the russians stole the identities of dead americans and used tactics out of a spy novel. this spy dekes in a forest in upstate new york. he's hunting for his payoff, $60,000 in cash. >> they played by moscow rules with a little bit of high tech technology on top of it. >> reporter: all the russians were sent packing to the mother land. a clear reminder that spy games are still alive and well.
pierre thomas, abc new washington. and now, we turn to a made in america investigation. we have been saying here that if each of us spent just $3.33 more every year on something made in the u.s., we could create 10,000 new jobs. but is there another possibility for powering up the u.s. economy? the tourists, eager to come here and spend their money who can't get in. abc's david muir set out to find out what's going on. >> reporter: they're lining up all over the world. tourists who want to come and spend money in america. the exploding middle class in china proudly showing us their passports as they wait, hoping to get a tourist visa to come visit here. the average chinese tourist who visits the u.s. spends $6,200 while they're here. visitors from india, $6,100. brazilian tourists coming to the u.s. spend $4,900 each. listen to this brazilian man we found waiting in line for his
visa in rio. >> i want to go to new york and california, maybe las vegas. >> reporter: and this young woman hoping to come here with her family. >> to go to disneyland. >> reporter: but there's no guarantee they'll get a visa to come here and spend money. in fact, in the last year in brazil, tourists has to wait up to 145 days just for and interview. in china, the wait time, up to 120 days and you often have to fly or take a train just to get to the visa office. this husband told us about big plans for his family during their christmas trip to the u.s. >> we want to go shopping. >> reporter: and while he was approved, his wife and son were denied. that family, not coming. you're talking about visas, simply to visit the u.s., not to stay here. >> this is not about people staying here. these are people who come, may spend two weeks, may spend a lot of money, creating american jobs and then go back to the countries where they came from. >> reporter: in the last decade, the number of foreign tourists
traveling overseas jumped to $60 milli million. but look at this. 26 million overseas visitors to the u.s. nearly the same number. we don't have the people to process them? >> we don't have the facilities in the locations to process them. this could be changed and create literally millions of jobs in the united states. >> reporter: jobs like the ones created at w low items, where we went just today, after learning they're hiring, as they try to cater to the chinese. they have entire menus in mandarin, slippers. chinese custom. >> u.s. is the number one outbound destination of choice for chinese travelers today. >> reporter: because they can't get here -- >> they'll go to europe. >> reporter: he's right. the u.s. has lost out on 78 million overseas visitors, $606 billion in spending here. enough, they say, to add nearly a half million american jobs here every year. so, why the opportunity lost?
the state department told us today safety and security come first. but they acknowledge they are working on this. 109 days you have to wait in brazil just for an appointment to talk about a visa. is that money lost that could be spent right here in america right now, creating jobs? >> we don't want anyone to wait. but we believe that most of those who are waiting will be coming. >> reporter: tonight, the state department items me that the wait times are coming down in brazil and china, slowly. they are sending about 100 workers to those two countries combined in the year ahead. and you heard disney mentioned there, our parent company, just one of the many destinations where travelers want to spend their money right here in america. and diane, in the next couple of years, 100 million wchinese wil go travel. the question is, where to? >> and where they they spend that money? thank you, david. and we'll tell you now what's still ahead on "world news." a tense day in the trial of michael jackson's doctor. did the star witness for dr. conrad murray in fact hurt his case?
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dr. conrad murray may have just forgotten a detail when he did not tell emergency room doctors he was giving michael jackson propofol. >> it was obviously overlooked. he didn't -- >> well, not obviously, it could also be a lie, correct? correct? that's another option. >> if you say so, i guess, yeah. >> reporter: deputy d.a. walgren back on the attack over dr. murray's delay in dialing 911, because the jackson mansion had no land line. >> conrad murray had a cell phone in his hand by his own statement. are you saying he was not capable of pushing 911? >> reporter: in the end, the expert who helped dr. murray so much last week, explaining how jackson could have taken his own life, today conceded dr. murray should never have taken the job. >> it's something that no amount of money could convince me to accept or take on as a responsibility. >> reporter: it became so combative today the judge had to step in, fining dr. white $1,000 for not responding to the prosecutor's questions directly. >> and the judge did that.
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and, by the way, he's apparently stopped sneaking an occasional cigarette. his doctor said the president is, quote, tobacco free. and a study from texas today suggestis that doctors listenin to mozart while perform iing colonoscopies may do a better job finding cancerous growths. it's called the mozart effect. those studies said even in toddlers, the musical pattern ins in mozart concentrate the human brain. it spawned a mini industry of mozart cds for children. and still ahead, a milestone for mankind today. 7 billion people on the planet and counting. what do we all have in common? [ male announcer ] each of these photos was taken by someone on the first morning of their retirement. it's the first of more than 6,000 sunrises the average retiree will see.
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7 billionth person on this planet, and for all our differences, so much in common. here's abc's dan harris. >> 7 billion. >> 7 billion. >> 7 billion. >> 7 billion. >> 7 billion. >> 7 billion people. >> reporter: at this landmark moment for man kind, we wanted to paint a portrait of the planet. the average earthling weighs 140 pounds and is 54 montana. most of us have brown eyes, only 8% of us have blue eyes. there are more men than women, just by a hair. and way more righties than lefts. more of us have cell phones than bank accounts. and more than twice as many of us speak mandarin chinese than english or spanish. >> i guess he's the 7 billionth child. >> one of the. >> reporter: by the time this little baby born today at new york presbyterian hospital or this one in israel or russia or japan, turns 14 years old, we will likely be at 8 billion
people. and by the way, a baby born today in a wealthy country like america has a 50/a 50 chance of living to 100. as a reporter for abc news, i've seen those income disparities up close, from people living in huts in the amazon to teaching slums in india to mansions in los angeles like this one that belonged to paris hilton. but despite our differences, there are things we have in common. we all want to be happy and most of us have a favorite food. >> my favorite food is dumpli dumplings. >> pizza. >> ice cream other oreos. >> reporter: and a dream. >> fly on a plane. >> i want to go to college. >> i wish to be a lawyer. >> reporter: humanity at 7 billion tonight, each of us painting our own portrait of how we want our future to be. dan harris, abc news, new york. >> and we thank you for watching. we're always there at abcnews.com. and don't forget, "nightline" later. and we thought we'd leave you tonight with some of the tiny
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