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What is a heat dome? An atmospheric scientist explains the weather phenomenon baking large parts of the US

Current News / News & Features /

Heat domes, like the one baking the eastern U.S. in June 2024, occur when a persistent region of high pressure traps heat over an area. The heat dome can stretch over several states and linger for days to weeks, leaving the people, crops and animals below to suffer through stagnant, hot air that can feel like an oven.

Typically, heat ...Read more

Daniel Mears/The Detroit News/TNS

2 victims from Michigan splash pad shooting remain critical, 2 released, sheriff says

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PONTIAC, Mich. — Two victims of a mass shooting at a Rochester Hills splash pad remained in critical condition on Monday, including an 8-year-old boy who was shot in the head, though he appears to be making amazing progress, according to an update by the Oakland County Sheriff.

Of the nine victims who were shot Saturday evening at Brooklands ...Read more

Armando L. Sanchez/Chicago Tribune/TNS

Chicago mayor must end migrant shelter evictions, Latino aldermen say

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CHICAGO — Chicago’s policy of evicting migrants living in shelters after a 60-day stay needs to end, the City Council’s Latino Caucus told Mayor Brandon Johnson in a letter Monday.

The call to end evictions comes shortly after Johnson’s administration began to remove migrant families with schoolchildren from shelters. The families had ...Read more

Yuri Gripas/Abaca Press/TNS

Sen. Ron Wyden wants more Medicaid funding to keep obstetric units open

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WASHINGTON — The chair of the Senate Finance Committee on Monday released a bill that would increase federal financial support to hospitals in hopes of stemming the tide of labor and delivery unit closures in rural and underserved areas.

Nearly a quarter of rural hospitals stopped providing obstetric services between 2011 and 2021, according ...Read more

Jason Armond/Los Angeles Times/TNS

Wildfires in California trigger air quality advisories. Here's what to do

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LOS ANGELES — Smoke emanating from several California wildfires that started over the weekend is worsening air quality on both ends of the state and has prompted an advisory for Los Angeles County and Bay Area residents to take precautions and stay indoors.

In separate wildfire smoke advisories Monday, the South Coast and Bay Area air quality...Read more

Emily Curiel/Kansas City Star/TNS

Kansas Attorney General Kris Kobach sues Pfizer over marketing of COVID-19 vaccine

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Kansas Attorney General Kris Kobach is suing the pharmaceutical company Pfizer, alleging it deceptively marketed its COVID-19 vaccine.

The lawsuit, filed in state court in Thomas County, comes after Texas Attorney General Ken Paxton filed a similar lawsuit in November. Kobach said at a news conference on Monday that Kansas is one of several ...Read more

NWS/NWS/TNS

Massachusetts faces brutal heat wave, may feel like 106 degrees; Michelle Wu declares heat emergency for Boston

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BOSTON — The brutal dog days of summer are starting early this year.

The region is bracing for an intense heat wave over the next several days, as temps spike into the 90s with it feeling like a “dangerous” 100-plus in spots.

As the heat dome takes over New England, meteorologists and officials are urging residents to stay hydrated and ...Read more

TNS

9th Circuit revives excessive force lawsuit in 2019 San Jose police shooting

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SAN JOSE, Calif. — A federal appellate court has revived an excessive force lawsuit over the 2019 shooting death of a man by a San Jose police officer who feared the man was heading toward a school with a gun that later turned out to be a replica firearm.

The suit filed by the mother of Francis Calonge, who was 33 when he died, was dismissed ...Read more

Rachel Aston/Las Vegas Review-Journal/TNS

Las Vegas jury delivers $3 billion award in bottled water lawsuit

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LAS VEGAS — A jury has awarded $3 billion in punitive damages to eight plaintiffs who sued the Real Water bottled water company, which was tied to an outbreak of liver failures.

Attorney William Kemp, who represented the lead plaintiffs, said the billions in punitive damages represents the most money that has been awarded by a jury in Nevada....Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

FAA moves to toughen safety rules on public charter airlines

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The Federal Aviation Administration plans to impose tougher safety requirements on public charter airlines such as Dallas-based JSX, a move toward closing what critics have called a loophole in U.S. aviation rules.

The new regulations aim to ensure that public charters that effectively operate like a typical commercial airline abide by the ...Read more

DREAMSTIME/TNS

Colorado researchers find link between moms' experience of racism and kids' aging

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Mothers’ experiences of racism showed up in their children’s bodies, with altered patterns of aging – though scientists cautioned they aren’t sure if their findings will translate into future health problems for the kids.

Two Colorado researchers looked at 205 pairs of mothers and children from non-white ethnic groups living in ...Read more

Paul Kitagaki Jr./The Sacramento Bee/TNS

California environmental groups appeal court ruling in favor of plan to build new reservoir

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SACRAMENTO, Calif. — A coalition of environmental groups appealed a court rejection of their challenge to California’s plan to build Sites Reservoir in a valley north of Sacramento, its first new major reservoir in decades.

They argue the project would harm Sacramento River ecosystems and threaten imperiled fish species. The groups include ...Read more

Chloe Jones/San Luis Obsipo Tribune/TNS

Paul Flores must pay Kristin Smart's family nearly $350,000 in restitution, judge rules

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SAN LUIS OBISPO, Calif. — Paul Flores must pay nearly $350,000 for nearly three decades’ worth of expenses incurred by Kristin Smart’ s family because of her murder, a Monterey County judge ruled Monday.

The ruling comes after an emotional restitution hearing Wednesday, where the Smart family shared itemized reports of their expenses ...Read more

Dreamstime/Dreamstime/TNS

Surgeon general calls for social media warning labels

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The U.S. surgeon general is demanding warning labels for social media platforms similar to those on cigarette packaging meant to discourage young people from smoking.

“In May 2023, I outlined recommendations to make social media safer for kids,” Surgeon General Vivek Murthy posted on social media Monday. “Yet parents and children are ...Read more

Olivier Douliery/TNS/TNS

Supreme Court's redistricting decision could hurt map challengers

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WASHINGTON — The Supreme Court’s recent decision on South Carolina’s congressional map will make it more difficult for voters to prove state lawmakers improperly relied on race in drawing new congressional lines, advocates and legal experts say.

The opinion laid out a new standard that requires challengers to show that state legislators ...Read more

John Spink/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS

House fire kills 6, including 3 children, south of Atlanta

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ATLANTA — A Newnan-area community was left reeling after a massive house fire ravaged a home Monday, leaving three children among six dead and five injured.

Officials have not released much information about the victims, which included three boys aged 6, 12 and 13. The three others killed were a 36-year-old woman and two 74-year-olds, a man ...Read more

KEW GARDENS/TNS

A tiny fern with a big secret just got into the Guinness Book of World Records

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"Tmesipteris oblanceolata" is an obscure species of fork fern found in New Caledonia, a French territory in the South Pacific. Just 4 to 6 inches tall, the humble plant is, in one particular way, the most remarkable living thing in the world.

"You would walk over it. You might even tread on it without knowing it," said Ilia Leitch, a plant ...Read more

Southern Baptists may have rejected a constitutional amendment opposing female pastors, but that does not mean they are changing their views on women’s leadership in church

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The recent annual meeting of the Southern Baptist Convention saw a number of motions related to women. The Conversation asked Susan Shaw, a gender and sexuality studies scholar who studies Southern Baptist women, to explain the votes and other developments in the nation’s largest Protestant denomination.

The Southern Baptist ...Read more

John Spink/The Atlanta Journal-Constitution/TNS

3 kids among 6 killed in Georgia house fire; 5 injured

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ATLANTA — Three children are among the six people killed in a massive house fire near Newnan early Monday morning, the Coweta County Coroner’s Office confirmed. Five others were injured.

The children’s ages are 6, 12 and 13, officials confirmed to The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. The remaining victims’ ages have not been released, but ...Read more

Al Seib/Los Angeles Times/TNS

LA will pay activist group $300,000 to settle lawsuit over police officer photos

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LOS ANGELES — The city of Los Angeles has agreed to pay the legal bills for a local journalist and a group of activists who it took to court last year for publishing photographs of LAPD officers, part of a tentative settlement that will end a lawsuit some saw as an assault on media freedom.

Under the agreement, which still needs to be ...Read more