tv NBC Nightly News NBC November 10, 2014 5:30pm-6:01pm PST
shaw is battling stage 3 breast cancer. >> how cool to see that. on our broadcast tonight, the plunge. a shock to the system coming for upwards of 200 million americans very early on in the season. the weather phenomenon that's about to make it bracingly cold from north to south. dead or alive mp. was the leader of isis hit by an air strike? tonight the latest from richard engel who reports from inside one of the most dangerous cities on earth. what really happened inside the medical clinic where joan rivers went into cardiac arrest? what investigators say doctors didn't notice. and a household danger, the problem is those detergent pods look like candy. the new warning tonight about how many children are ending up in the hospital. "nightly news" begins now. from nbc news world headquarters in new york, this is "nbc nightly news" with brian williams.
good evening. and we want to get underway tonight here with a big change on the way. what we're about to witness happens every year, but not usually this early and not usually all at once. here is our nation now. and here's what happens by the early morning hours of thursday. very few parts of the lower 48 will be left unaffected as a sudden crush of cold air blows down from the north, envelopes much of our country. they're getting a preview tonight in minnesota where the snow scenes are positively mid-winter. and it's where we begin our coverage tonight with meteorologist dylan dreyer in forest lake, minnesota. >> reporter: blinding snow, gusty winds, and freezing temperatures barrelled into the upper midwest today. snow piled up quickly in minnesota. this was forest lake yesterday and forest lake at the same time today. police responded to more than 600 crashes as temperatures
dropped, turning roads into sheets of ice. this snow will be followed by brutally cold arctic air surging in from the north. rapid city, south dakota, plunged from 53 to just 16 degrees in 24 hours shutting down the airport because of the dangerous conditions. springfield, colorado from 78 to 47 in one hour, 31 degrees. even more impressive, carr, colorado, dropped 22 degrees in six minutes. residents are preparing for the first major snowstorm in this part of the country. paul schmidt picked up the last snow blower off the rack. >> just been putting it off, putting it off. we usually don't get snow until after thanksgiving. but guess i was wrong. >> reporter: in nearby dalton, a semi loaded with live turkeys likely headed for someone's thanksgiving feast, skidded off the interstate. let's put this in perspective. on average this area picks up about nine inches of snow for the entire month of november. with this snowstorm alone we're looking at a foot of snow to fall in a 24-hour period.
and we still have half the month to go. schools remained open here. >> we just take it easy, slow. >> reporter: so this weather doesn't seem to scare everyone. >> it's going to happen one way or another. so, i don't know, i guess it's good to just get it out of the way. >> reporter: now, the snow is still falling lightly here just outside of minneapolis. the heavier snow though has pushed off into northern wisconsin. and tonight and tomorrow we could end up picking up a foot of snow across parts of northern wisconsin and into northern michigan. now, behind the snow is that frigid cold. today's temperatures were impressive. down through dallas topped out in the mid-70s. tomorrow we are only going to top out in the mid-30s. and 30s and 40s will stick around pretty much all week long. in fact, here in the upper midwest we are expected to stay below freezing, not even hitting 32 degrees, for at least the next two weeks. brian? >> dylan dreyer amid the hardy people of minnesota with a preview of what's in for the rest of us. thanks.
news from overseas was dominated this weekend by reports that a u.s. air strike may have taken out, or at least severely wounded the head of isis, al baghdadi. he may be the most wanted terrorist on the planet, the mastermind of this brutal assault we're seeing in isis and syria, including the key battleground city of kobani. it's been under siege by isis for months now. our chief foreign correspondent, richard engel, is back from kobani, one of the few western journalists to see the fighting there firsthand, and i might add at great personal risk. richard, let's begin with this report about the isis leader. >> reporter: good evening, brian. a u.s. military official tells me that baghdadi was not the intended target of that u.s. air strike on a convoy of 13 vehicles in iraq and that if he was hit, it was luck. no confirmation. meanwhile, in kobani the fighting rages on. for two months kobani has been fighting for its life,
surrounded, withstanding wave after wave of isis attacks. we managed to get inside and found a city devastated but refusing to surrender. these kurdish fighters, women and men, are outgunned and outnumbered. this 34-year-old is a top field commander, her name means strength. now we run, she says. sheets hung across intersections cloak our movements from enemy snipers. you stay low and run fast. she took us to the southern front. as kurdish women, she says, we are tied to our land and our principles more than our lives. we follow her to kobani city hall, now a front line position. the enemy is just 20 yards away. she's saying when they come, the isis fighters come in waves, not just one or two they're trying to infiltrate, but 40, 50 fighters will come and try and swarm into the building.
to keep them back, the kurds of kobani mostly have light weapons and grenades. they are like no other fighting group in syria. secular nationalists with a classless communal lifestyle, no ranks. everyone part of the war effort. most women have one home, one family to care for. not us. we care for our nation she says. half of kobani has fallen to isis. its defenders are trying to claw it back. kobani has been paying a heavy price for its resistance. this is what's left of main street. there are no people here. if i took two steps in that direction, there's a danger of being shot by a sniper. the kurds are backed by u.s. air strikes, but these are the men and women on the ground facing an enemy known for its savagery. so everyone here carries a weapon of last resort. they'll commit suicide rather than be captured by isis.
this 19-year-old, a teacher, keeps a grenade in her pocket. i'm not leaving here. either i die here or we win, she says. it's that total dedication that has kept the defenders of kobani going and this city alive so far. i was struck by that dedication of the fighters in kobani, brian. in so many other towns people just ran away as soon as the militants showed up. they were that intimidated. but not in kobani. >> richard engel live with us tonight from the relative safety of the border once again after becoming the first american network journalist to report on this stage of the conflict in that city. terrific piece of reporting, richard. thank you. an update now on that general motors recall on ignition switches linked to dozens of deaths. there are still more than 1 million cars on the american road that need to be fixed. and we're learning tonight general motors was aware of the problem months before telling the government about this potentially deadly defect. we get our report on this
tonight from nbc's tom costello. >> reporter: tonight, serious questions about whether gm knew far earlier than it first admitted about a deadly ignition switch defect, linked to at least 32 deaths and hundreds of injuries. most of the victims in their teens and early 20s. gm announced the recall on february 7th, but newly discovered e-mails between gm and a supplier show both parties knew there was a problem two months earlier in december. a gm project manager writes of an urgent field action for our customers and the need to secure 500,000 replacement parts. but appearing before congress last spring ceo mary barra repeatedly testified she'd only learned of the widespread ignition problems in january. >> i was not aware that there was this issue until the recall was introduced on january 31st. january 31st. on january 31st, 2014. >> reporter: an attorney representing victims and their families claims there are at least 85 accidents and one fatality in the 60 days between the order and the recall
announcement. >> gm actually made the concrete decision that there was a defect, that they had to order the ignition switches and they were going to have a recall on december 18th, 2013. it's just mind blowing. >> reporter: gm today said ceo barra knew of the internal investigation in december but not the details. and these e-mails are further confirmation that our system needed reform, and we have done so. gm also insists it's standard procedure to start ordering parts before a recall is ordered. but tonight some lawmakers are questioning whether that delay may have put more drivers lives at risk. tom costello, nbc news, detroit. on the eve of veterans day 2014, a major overhaul is planned for the scandal-plagued agency that cares for 9 million very important clients, the men and women who have served. the department of veterans affairs will attempt the biggest reorganization in its history after revelations of extreme wait times at v.a. facilities and more. our report tonight from nbc's
peter alexander. >> reporter: with veterans gathering at the nation's monuments to honor those who have served, the v.a. today announced sweeping plans to better serve them in the wake of a system-wide scandal over falsified records and delayed care. >> we call that reorganization my v.a., because that's how we want veterans to view it. >> reporter: three months into the job the new v.a. secretary bob mcdonald is tapping into his private sector experience as former ceo of proctor & gamble. today in a message to all 330,000 v.a. employees, mcdonald pledged to create a new customer service organization to services, including expanding public-private partnerships. and to give 9 million veterans enrolled in the v.a. a single point of contact for care. >> it's all about one-on-one personal touch. we've got to make it easy for our veterans to take advantage of our services and to be able to navigate what appears to be a complex system. >> reporter: to fix the
problems, mcdonald wants to hire 28,000 medical professionals and is looking to fire 1,000 staffer who is he says violated v.a. policies. but will it be enough to get the v.a. back on track? >> we think bob mcdonald has the toughest job in washington, d.c. and ultimately the question is can he implement this plan fast enough to have the impact it needs to have on our customers, veterans. >> reporter: veterans whose faith in government has been shaken by scandal. peter alexander, nbc news, washington. president obama joining other world leaders at the apec summit in beijing. the group photo brought another test of his strained relationship with russian president vladimir putin. the two had a brief conversation according to aides. president obama will meet with china's president on wednesday. this trip will also include visits to myanmar and australia. late word tonight from new york state health investigators about what really went on inside that doctor's office when joan rivers went into cardiac arrest. this will have a big impact on
the medical community because some of the details are shocking. some of them speculated about but not confirmed until right now. nbc's stephanie gosk is here with us. stephanie, good evening. >> good evening, brian. this report highlights a list of missteps. among them one of the doctors treating joan rivers did not actually have privileges to practice at the new york clinic. rivers did not give informed consent for all the procedures she was given. and one member of the medical team actually took cell phone photos during the procedure. the report also states that the drop in rivers' vital signs was not immediately noticed. the comedian was eventually resuscitated but never regained consciousness. in a statement lawyers for rivers' daughter melissa write, ms. rivers is outraged by the misconduct and mismanagement now shown to have occurred before, during, and after the procedure. yorkville endoscopy stated, in response to the statement of deficiencies, yorkville immediately submitted and
implemented a plan of correction that addressed all issues raised. the clinic adds that the doctors involved in the incident are no longer practicing there. brian? >> stephanie gosk here in new york with us tonight. stephanie, thanks. something of a medical milestone, the u.s. is now completely free of ebola cases. dr. craig spencer, who had the last confirmed case, has now been declared virus free. he'll leave the hospital here in new york tomorrow. and today nbc news started a special project sharing 24 stories about children and families affected by ebola in 24 straight hours. find out much more, including how to donate to the fight against ebola, on our website tonight, nbcnews.com. we have a breaking student out of mexico where the killing of college students has brought a wave of protest that's shut down the airport in acapulco. good evening, joe.
>> riot police clashed where protesters who were upset about the disappearance of 43 college students. protesters, with machetes and sticks blocked the airport, throwing stones and fireballs at police. the airport was closed, but has since re-opened. the protesters were joined by parents of missing students, following days of clashes across the country. authorities say a gang has confessed to killing the students and burning their bodies, but families of the missing want physical proof. >> joe fryer in our los angeles newsroom tonight, joe, thanks. and we're back with more on this monday night from new york right after this.
and so many are getting sick ingesting them. doctors say they're now responsible for a call to poison control on average every hour. our report tonight from janet shamlian. >> reporter: for new mom jessie marin, it was a heart stopping moment. her 6-month-old had a laundry pod in her mouth and it popped. the chemical detergent oozing into her daughter. >> how does this happen? >> my grandma mistaked the pod for a teether and stuck it in her mouth to try to soothe her. >> reporter: terrified she raced her daughter to texas hospital. >> she was vomiting on herself the entire way there. and one of the nurses saw her and immediately took her back. >> reporter: frantic moment, then relief. >> she seems perfect now. >> reporter: marla was fine. but the detergent pods are proving dangerous to children. >> these pods are often very colorful and attractive to young children. these are 1 and 2-year-olds and they think this is candy or juice. >> reporter: the journal of pediatrics reports in a two-year
study the nation's poison control center took 17,000 calls about children exposed to detergent packets. more than 700 were hospitalized. one child died. >> if they put it in their mouth, they can have stomach issues. or if it gets into their lungs it can cause bleeding problems as well. >> reporter: manufacturers say they're changing the packaging, improving safety labels and rolling out an awareness campaign. >> always store the laundry packets out of reach and sight -- >> reporter: other household products, like dishwashing pods, have also been ingested by children. do you still buy them? >> i don't. it's not worth the risk to me anymore. >> reporter: for this mom the convenience came at too high of a cost. janet shamlian, nbc news, houston. and we're back in a moment with a terrible close call on the runway.
every day is a new opportunity to help make life better right here in san francisco. whether it's helping local businesses like the fruitguys grow and prosper, supporting nonprofits like juma ventures as they fulfill their mission or helping neighborhoods like the tenderloin become vibrant communities. if there's a way to help the people of san francisco thrive and succeed, we'll find it. that's the power of local connections. that's bank of america. ♪ many people prefer a window seat when flying.
that may change after this. you may ask for the aisle. a propeller blade came loose during a rough landing in edmonton last week. it was a canadian-made bombardier plane. the blade sliced through the fuselage, through the window seat passenger in the head, bruised her up, knocked her glasses off, but that was mostly it, and she's going to be okay thankfully. we received some big news around here today, the list is out of this year's recipients of the president medal of freedom and they include tom brokaw. he is in some spectacular company including meryl streep, stevie wonder, ethel kennedy and stephen sondheim, and the late freedom writers. it's the highest civilian honor in our country. the complete list is on our website tonight, nbcnews.com. there was a great ceremony in berlin this weekend to mark the 25th anniversary of the fall of the berlin wall. but one still photo stood out to us. here it is.
the wall of bright lights the germans erected that is visible from thousands of feet above the city to trace where that wall once stood dividing east from west. when we come back, an incredibly beautiful tribute and the powerful reason behind it. "nbc nightly news" with brian williams brought to you by pacific life. for insurance, annuities and investments, choose pacific life. the power to help you succeed.
tomorrow is veterans day, november 11th, when we honor our nation's heroes. across the atlantic it's called armistice day, when they commemorate the 11th hour of the 11th day of the 11th month, marking the end of world war i. and the hundreds of thousands of british soldiers who gave their lives are being remembered this year in breath-taking fashion at the historic tower of london. it's always been said that going back to the napoleonic wars through world war i and then world war ii, it was the poppy that grew back first on the battlefields where the land was left scorched and bare and around the freshly buried bodies
of the dead. and now they stand as a memorial in a country that honors its war dead like no other. and for some visitors, the power of it all is overwhelming. >> something so bad could be so beautiful. every fallen soldier, every person that's given their life so bravely. >> reporter: 888,246 ceramic poppies, one each for the 888,246 british soldiers killed in the first world war. it was a canadian army field doctor who survived the withering combat of world war i and wrote the poem that made the poppy the icon of remembrance that it is today. in flanders fields the poppies blow between the crosses, row on row. at this time of year in canada and the uk, they can be seen on the lapels of the grateful
generations who followed. this expanse started with a single poppy, and then the volunteers went to work. as the months went by as summer gave way to fall through london fog and rain and sun, patches of red became a field of red. and now look at the view from the air. they have been visited by royalty and by relatives of the dead and by 4 million people in between. they file past and pay tribute. these were all young men once. they were lined up here at the tower of london to go off and fight for country and kingdom and what was right. it may be the most vivid way of remembering them. and before we all look away, think of the lives they would have led. ♪ 100 years since the first shot was fired in the war that was supposed to end all wars. that is our broadcast on this
monday night, veterans day eve. as we begin a new week with you, thank you for being here with us. i'm brian williams. we, of course, hope to see you right back here tomorrow evening. goodnight. whose university? >> our university! >> right now at 6:00 it's happening again. new claims of racist behavior at san jose state. good evening and thanks for being with us, i'm raj mathai. >> i'm jessica aguirre. outrage on the san jose state campus again over new allegations of racism and the administration's alleged slow response. this time though it involves a university board member who reportedly denigrated the mental capability of latino students.
students are calling for the university president to take action. michelle roberts joins us live at san jose state where that rally took place today. >> reporter: dozens of students marched today and that rally ended at the president's fs on office. they were urging him to have a meeting. that meeting didn't happen but they are asking the university to take a stand against racism. >> whose university? >> our university! >> reporter: these students say they're marching for racial equality on the san jose state campus. >> let's raise our fists in solid dare day! >> reporter: a call to action for school administrators to remove a board member from the tower foundation which deals with the investment and administration of all san jose state philanthropic donations. the march comes after a board meeting in february during which the board member allegedly made racist remarks. >> a statement made by this major donor follows. i contribute to this university because these little