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tv   BBC News  BBC News  December 11, 2021 12:00pm-12:31pm GMT

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this is bbc news — these are the latest headlines in the uk and around the world. the governor of kentucky says at least 50 people have died there after a powerful storm battered his state and four others in the us. it is very hard, really tough and we are praying for each and every one of those families. the uk renews its appeal for everyone eligible, to come forward for a booster vaccine — as research shows it significantly reduces the chance of developing symptoms from the omicron variant. new guidance is issued for care homes in england that will limit visitors to 3, for each resident — as omicron cases surge. britain warns russia it will face severe consequences
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if it invades ukraine — as a g7 meeting of foreign ministers to discuss rising tensions gets under way. it would be extremely serious if russia were to take that action. it would be a strategic mistake and there would be severe consequences for russia. and — england's cricketers slump to a 9—wicket defeat in the first ashes test, in brisbane. hello and welcome if you're watching in the uk or around the world. dozens of people are feared dead in the us state of kentucky after a series of tornadoes wreaked
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havoc across a wide area. the tornadoes tore through the us states arkansas, kentucky, and into part of illinois on friday night. in illinois an amazon warehouse collapsed in the storm. a rescue operation is taking place to find survivors. the governor of kentucky says as many as a hundred people could die in the state as a result of a series of tornadoes sweeping across the region. the governor andy beshear described it as the worst in the state's history. so first, just trying to confirm this figure of more than 50 feared dead in kentucky, according to the governor. yes, i fear that there are more than 50 dead in kentucky. the confirmation on each individual is coming in, but we are going to lose over 50 people, a lot closer to somewhere between 70 and 100. it is devastating.
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the governor also gave details of a manufacturing plant in mayfield which was hit by the tornado. it is tragic. this is a candle factory. there were about 110 people in it at the time that the tornado hit it. we believe we will lose at least dozens of those individuals. it is very hard, really tough, and we are praying for each and every one of those families. the extreme weather has caused widespread damage in other states. at least one person was killed in a care home in arkansas. in illinois, rescue workers have been trying to establish whether anyone�*s still trapped
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in an amazon warehouse after its roof collapsed. mark lobel reports. debris and power lines down in st charles county. tornado warnings were issued here before it struck a nursing home. the wild weather hit the top of this amazon warehouse in edwardsville, illinois. local reporters say that there are people inside. the family member of someone trapped in the complex was speaking to them at the time. he was on the phone with me while it was happening. the tornado was hitting the back of the building, the trucks were coming in and i told him tojump out of the truck and duck and we watched the building go up, stuff hitting the cars, i told him i was on my way, just, you know, stay under and we came and now we cannot find him. others are concerned about those on the premises, too. i talked to him about eight o'clock tonight, a little before, i texted him and he was returning
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to the warehouse to drop his van off. i have not heard from him since. ijust heard through the news. we live in edwardsville, we lost power. so, i decided to come down here to see what was going on and i had no idea the building looked that bad and i am worried sick. ijust want to know if he is ok. the national weather service forecast more than 70 million people across parts of the mississippi, ohio and tennessee valleys would be affected, with concern over the length and nocturnal nature of these tornadoes, that can prove more destructive than daytime ones. mark lobel, bbc news. let's look at some of the reaction on twitter. meterologist ellen bacca has tweeted this picture of a nursing home in arkansas saying "it took a direct hit by a very large tornado & collapsed with patients inside." stephanie hart,
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a resident in kentucky tweeted "my in—laws house is destroyed and i can't get to my house. mayfield has been flattened and one of my employees lost everything she had tonight. this is the worst tornado i've lived through." justin hazlewood tweeted "my entire family is in the path of the terrible tornado outbreak in west tennessee and kentucky. it's an outbreak like never seen before. please pray. my family is in shelters and trying to make it through the night." jeff piotrowski is a storm chaser and meterologist who is in mayfield, kentucky. he gave me this update earlier. we had a moderate risk out for long tracked damage from the satellite this afternoon and this evening, and that occurred. i actually tracked the tornado, the first major tornado that hit monette, arkansas. i was in the city when it hit the nursing
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home and it was a very large tornado, about three quarters of a mile wide, and then it went north—east of there and it tracked up to litchfield and did massive damage there, which was a fatality to general store at litchfield, arkansas. it continued to track north—east all the way to mayfield, doing major damage along the entire path and it's been on the south—west side, it has been in mayfield now for six hours and i can tell you the scene at the candle factory area is extremely grim. they have been bringing people both out alive, injured and there have been people who have died and it has been nonstop, ambulances coming in and out of the factory for about seven hours now, nonstop. and that continues... i've just had two more ambulances just passed me going into the factory. so they dug down there, they found the people and they are digging them out of rubble. there are still a number of people buried in the rubble, it is an active scene. it is going to go probably well into daylight, maybe even into the afternoon.
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the debris is about 20 feet deep, this building was about 100 yards x 100 yards size commercial building, a factory, and the building took a direct hit from the tornado, which was a major tornado, probably ef3 or higher. the entire building has collapsed with people inside the building. the debris is so deep and so wide it is going to take a period of time to find everyone. i get the sense that people were quite taken by surprise at these tornadoes in terms of when they struck at night, and the force as well. i don't think they were surprised by the tornadoes, it was well forecasted by local weather services and the storm prediction centres and the local tv, it was very well forecasted. what made it unusual is that these tornadoes were upwards of half a mile to a mile wide, moving at 55—60 mph,
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so that is a mile a minute and when you have these very large tornadoes hitting highly populated areas, you're going to have casualties and you are going to have injuries and that is what we have experienced across about a five state region tonight, unfortunately. jeff, did people not seek shelter? because i was following some of this on twitter last night, friday night, did they not seek shelter? yeah, they seek shelter, but in this particular candle factory, i have not been able to speak to any officials at the factory. they knew it was coming and people were going to shelter within the building and i understand some of the people were out in their cars when the tornado hit and it actually picked up people in their cars and threw them into the building. i got word of that a few minutes ago from a particular individual who was here, but people do seek shelter. a lot of people went to the bathrooms, to the basement, but again these were very large, very destructive tornadoes, travelling up to 60 mph
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for hundreds of miles, hitting numerous cities and some very major cities. you are going to have bad things happen and that is what is happening. so what spawned them? first of all, we had record warmth and record heat across the southern plains in oklahoma and texas and in mississippi and arkansas and alabama and tennessee and missouri today. the temperatures were in the low to mid 80s and south winds at about 30—40, which 70 degree...point. this is an unprecedented air mass for december 11th — 10th, 11th, you know, timeframe. to have this much moisture and heatand humidity... we have a very strong, powerful jet stream overhead and an upper wave came out of oklahoma and this powerful surface low developed back in south—east colorado,
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it raced up towards chicago and that powerful storm and jet stream was overhead and conditions were perfect for violent tornadoes underneath the jet stream. the combination of the ingredients was very deadly. health officials in the uk have renewed their appeal for everyone eligible, to come forward for a coronavirus boosterjab — after research showed it significantly reduced the chance of developing symptoms, from the omicron variant. the preliminary study — by the uk health security agency — also suggests that 2 doses of vaccine, are not enough to protect people from catching the variant. cases of omicron have risen sharply in recent days, and could top a million by the end of the month. our medical editor, fergus walsh, reports. it is remarkable just how fast the omicron variant is spreading through a highly immunised population.
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new evidence suggests two doses of vaccine offer little protection from infection, while a booster cuts your risk of getting a mild illness by three quarters. but vaccination should offer much higher protection against severe disease. what scientists urgently need to know is what proportion of those infected will need hospital treatment. there are early signs from south africa that omicron may mostly cause milder illness than delta, but even a small proportion of a huge omicron wave could result in sudden and sustained pressure on an already stretched nhs. the public are being urged to recognize the potential threat from omicron. our public health advice is to take proportionate action from where we are now. that includes face coverings vaccinating, primary vaccine. getting tested when you've got symptoms, regular lateral flows, making sure that you ventilate spaces.
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and finally to think about the number of contacts that you have every day, working from home if you can, and other measures that will reduce the transmission of this in the community. the government says covid measures will be kept under review. any decision on further restrictions on people's lives and livelihoods will need very careful consideration, given the threat from omicron remains unclear. one thing is certain. this is the last news people wanted to hear in the run up to christmas. from today, household contacts of people who've tested positive for covid in scotland, are being asked to isolate for 10 days — regardless of their vaccination status, or even if they've had a negative pcr result. the welsh government is urging members of the public to take a lateral flow test before going shopping or to christmas parties. and officials in northern ireland aren't planning to extend
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restrictions over the festive period — but say they may need to, come january. care homes in england are also being affected by the rise in omicron cases.from wednesday, the number of people allowed to visit each resident will be limited to 3 — and staff testing will be increased. our reporter, simonjones, has more details. they're getting into the christmas spirit at this care home in norwich, but the shadow of omicron looms. the home, though, says it's determined not to close to visitors. i'd be very sad if that was to happen. our main goal is, is that our doors will remain open. and we've listened to the families. we've listened to our residents. and what they really missed was, it was that contact. and what we've done is that we're still allowing the visitors to come. we have robust procedures in place and it's been transformational.
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but things are changing — under new guidance from the department of health, care home residents in england will only be permitted to receive visits from three people, plus one essential care worker. staff will have to take three lateral flow tests a week, as well as a weekly pcr test. and there will be a £300 million fund to recruit and retain care workers. as well as the extra testing for staff vaccination teams will be deployed to homes to make sure all residents and workers get theirjabs. here at the department of health, they say updating the visiting guidance and boosting the booster program will help protect some of the most vulnerable members of our society from the virus this winter. it's about balancing risk with the latest clinical advice. between a rock and a hard place, the per care home staff are overworked and the relatives want to see their loved oi'ies. we will do our very, very best to make sure that it happens, but i can only give sympathy to those _ people out there, because i had thought that this christmas might be
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better than last, but it seems we are heading for another difficult one. this resident says she would be concerned if she could not see her relatives. i wouldn't like that, but i have to put up with it. the aim is to maintain contact at christmas, but the changes reflect the concern over omicron and the pressure the care system is already under. simon jones, bbc news. nadra ahmed is the spokesperson for the national care association. she told me she's disappointed by the rule change.... providers have been working really hard to try and make this christmas much better than last year. they have been planning this for a while, talking to families, getting things into place, making sure that we could get that festive feeling back again after having lasted for the last years. actually, this just moves us more towards what it was like before.
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it will be disappointing for relatives, it will be extremely disappointing for the residents, but it is the world that we live in. we cannot risk getting this virus back into our care services and especially when it is not transmissible. when it is that transmissible. nadra, i wonder do you have the resources, or do most care homes, your members, have the resources and the staff to meet these new restrictions? i think the restrictions we have been dealing with these for a while, but you know, what we have to remember is the testing regimes, the booking systems, these are all new and these are the things we have had to embrace. with very little support, i have to say, and with the worst staffing crisis we have ever seen. so, our staff are being taken away from that sort of task which is the most important to them, which is about supporting the people that we care for and having to deal with that.
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we have got more admin staff coming in, some providers do get some volunteers to come and support them, but all of that, we have to manage, risk assess, and make it happen. so, i think resources are going to be very, very tight. they are going to be difficult, especially as we come towards this festive period and the new year, where staff who were exhausted will also be wanting some time out, with theirfamilies. nadra, i wonder if i could just ask very quickly, do you feel as if these new guidelines are clear? well, we will not know until they are published on tuesday. we do not know what the guidance will say. what we know is the headline, which is that it will be three nominated individuals from each family and the essential caregiver, so how that will work is that families will need to nominate people and i think that in itself will pose some challenges, where families have already planned that grandchildren might be coming
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in to see their nan or grandad. that is not going to be able to happen any more. there is huge disappointment for the relatives. we have raised expectations that this christmas would be very different, the narrative was, you know, it would be a much better christmas, it might be marginally, but we are going to live under this course, this fear of the transmissibility of this virus. the uk treasury has admitted some officials did have drinks in their office in november last year — but has denied that this amounted to a party. the times has reported that about two dozen civil servants held a drinks party to celebrate finishing work on the chancellor's spending review. a treasury spokesperson described what happened as "impromptu drinks around their desks". they added that there was no in—person departmental party last christmas.
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the uk foreign secretary liz truss has warned russia it will face "severe economic consequences" if it invades ukraine. she was speaking in liverpool where foreign ministers from the g7 are meeting to discuss rising tensions with russia, china and iran's nuclear ambitions. i share the view that it would be extremely serious if russia were to take that action. it would be a strategic mistake and there would be severe consequences for russia and what we're doing this weekend is working with like—minded allies to spell that out. joining me now is our diplomatic correspondent james landale, who's in liverpool that is where the g7 or meeting. we
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heard from liz truss there and the eu have spoken out, as have america, is russia likely to listen or take any of this seriously, james? well, that is certainly _ any of this seriously, james? well, that is certainly what _ any of this seriously, james? well, that is certainly what western - that is certainly what western powers hope will happen. there is a genuine fear that certainly the military posture adopted by russia and the fact that there are more than 100,000 troops poised on the edge of ukraine, that if they wanted to invade, they have the capacity to do that and that is deeply worrying in western capitals. they do not want there to be any conflict. everybody is desperately trying to deter that action and every minister when they are asked or threatening severe consequences, specifically economic consequences and the thing is that russia has been subject to sanctions before, it is already subject to sanctions and the question is can those sanctions be firm enough. they are talking about
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excluding russia from international banking clearing systems, perhaps maybe curbing the access for russia to the gas market in europe, shutting off pipelines and things like that, but they are not being explicit at the moment, just letting russia infer that from what they say. that is the stick, if you like, the other side of the debate is the carrot, what discussions, what openings can they have with moscow to discuss other issues about once this conflict or the threat of this conflict, has been de—escalated and thatis conflict, has been de—escalated and that is the sort of issue being discussed in the margins of this meeting today. discussed in the margins of this meeting today-— meeting today. how has russia resnonded _ meeting today. how has russia resnonded to — meeting today. how has russia responded to sanctions - meeting today. how has russia responded to sanctions in - meeting today. how has russia responded to sanctions in the l meeting today. how has russia - responded to sanctions in the past? itjust ignores them, but pays the price. in terms of, you know, the fact that a lot of sanctions against particular officials, who cannot travel to the uk or the west of the us or europe or wherever the
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sanctions are imposed, their assets are frozen and things like that. i think the real difference is if real russian money raisers, like its gas industry, like as prom and things like that, if they can no longer sell so much gas to the west, that is going to be economically problematic for russia and therefore a high price for russia to pay. the problem with that, of course, is once those sorts of sanctions are imposed, that actually hurts the countries that are imposing those sanctions. if a big new pipeline between russia and germany is closed off in the future, that means there will be a less plentiful supply of gas to europe and that means that gas to europe and that means that gas prices will go up and that affects everybody at a time of rising prices. in other words, there are costs, swings and roundabouts to be calculated by policymakers. i wonder if you could give us a quick lesson on the g7, who are they, why do they meet, and how often do they
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meet and how much power do they have? briefly. the meet and how much power do they have? briefly-— have? briefly. the g7 is seven countries. _ have? briefly. the g7 is seven countries, european _ have? briefly. the g7 is seven countries, european countries| have? briefly. the g7 is seven - countries, european countries like britain, france, germany, italy and then there is north america, us and canada and japan. they are some of the wealthiest liberal democracies in the world and a while back they used to involve russia, they were known as the g8 but then russia invaded, annexed crimea and there was an incursion into ukraine and they were kicked out. essentially they were kicked out. essentially they are western liberal democracies and they are very wealthy ones and they have always been cooperating for a long time to try and say, what can they do on an economic and political front. can they do on an economic and politicalfront. they can they do on an economic and political front. they meet regularly, sometimes the heads of government level, we saw that famous summit in cornwall earlier this year, this is one step down, these are the foreign ministers, but they are the foreign ministers, but they are still discussing the same issues about how they can do better to try
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and defend democracy and freedom in and defend democracy and freedom in a world increasingly been encroached by authoritarian countries. i a world increasingly been encroached by authoritarian countries.— by authoritarian countries. i have not about by authoritarian countries. i have got about a _ by authoritarian countries. i have got about a minute, _ by authoritarian countries. i have got about a minute, do _ by authoritarian countries. i have got about a minute, do they - by authoritarian countries. i have | got about a minute, do they have military power as well as economic? they are countries, as individual countries, they have military capability, but as a g7, they do not act together as a g7 in any military way whatsoever. this is an ad hoc grouping, it is merely a format, a venue, for all of these countries to come together, to negotiate the issues of the day. there is no great secretariat pumping out legislation or communiques, let alone taking military action.— or communiques, let alone taking military action. 0k, james landale, thank ou military action. ok, james landale, thank you for— military action. 0k, james landale, thank you for that _ military action. 0k, james landale, thank you for that lesson. - england's cricketers have slumped to a nine—wicket defeat in the first ashes test in brisbane. after fighting back on the third day, they lost their last eight wickets
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for 77 runs and were bowled out for 297, leaving australia to score just 20 runs for victory. you're watching bbc news. now it's time for a look at the weather with owain wyn evans. hello, hello, everyone, i hope you're doing all right. now, most of us will notice temperatures rising across the uk today, but those rising temperatures will come courtesy of a weather front which, in turn, will also bring some rain, so there is your headline for the weekend. yes, turning milder, but rain at times. let's have a look at the air mass. you can see the blue colours being replaced by the warmer tones, the yellows, the oranges. this triangle here is called the warm sector. you can see it drawing up the milder air from the south. where you see the line, that is the boundary, that is the weather front. and that is what is bringing us this. moving in from the west this morning, continuing on itsjourney, as we head through the rest of the day, then moving
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from the west towards the east. rain across many parts, i think. quite breezy to the north. temperature—wise, we will get to about 12, 13 celsius potentially. on the leading edge of that front, it will still be chilly, from the northern isles, down across eastern coasts, into single figures, whilst, further west, we will be in the double figures. let's look at tonight, then. the weather front continues to move away, fizzling out as it moves towards the east. we will see some clear spells developing across parts of the north of england, scotland, some showers here, with a strengthening breeze, cloudy across central and southern parts of england and wales, and a bit of a temperature contrast tonight, i think. many of us seeing double figures, 12, possibly 13 celsius. and across southern parts, and northern england, scotland, it will be pretty chilly, with temperatures down to around five celsius in aberdeenshire, potentially lower here or there. let's have a look at tomorrow, then. more in the way of drier weather around.
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you can see this feature here, as it tilts forward into wales, northern ireland, northern england, eventually into scotland. some brightness, i think, further south. temperatures up a notch, we could get 1a celsius, but still cooler to the north. we are keeping an eye on an area of low pressure that will move towards us tomorrow night, there it is. this will be bringing very strong winds across parts of northern ireland and scotland, and we could see some disruption as a result with gusts of potentially 80 or 90 mph. there it is. you can see it moving away towards the north, skirting western coastal parts of scotland, the western isles, up towards the northern isles as well, with stormy conditions and very strong winds as well, so that is certainly one to keep an eye on. as for the rest of this week, relatively mild. it looks like things will cool down a bit towards the end of the week, turning more settled.
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hello, this is bbc news. i'm lukwesa burak. the headlines... the governor of kentucky says at least 50 people have died there after a powerful storm battered his state and four others in the us. the uk renews its appeal for everyone eligible to come forward for a booster vaccine, as research shows it significantly reduces the chance of developing symptoms from the omicron variant. new guidance is issued for care homes in england that will limit visitors to three for each resident, as omicron cases surge. britain warns russia it will face severe consequences if it invades ukraine, as a g7 meeting of foreign ministers to discuss rising tensions gets underway. and england's cricketers slump to a nine—wicket defeat in the first ashes test, in brisbane.

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