tv Early Start With Christine Romans and Laura Jarrett CNN December 28, 2021 2:00am-2:59am PST
new advice from the cdc on what to do if you get covid. can it keep america running during this omicron surge? and breaking overnight, five dead, including the shooter as a gunman goes on a rampage through several locations in the denver area. and new body cam video from the l.a.p.d. raising questions about use of force after a teenager is killed by an officer pursuing a suspect. good morning, everyone. it is tuesday, december 28th. it is 5:00 a.m. here in new
york. thanks so much for getting an early start with us. i'm laura jarrett. >> and i'm paula reid in for christine romans. welcome to our viewers in the united states and around the world. we have reports from los angeles, moscow, bough jing, delaware, rome and mexico city. >> basically everywhere. welcome to "early start." paula, so nice to have you again today. we begin with a major change when it comes to how we live with the virus and frankly each other. the cdc has officially shortened its recommendation time -- isolation time for people who test positive with covid. instead of staying away from each other ten days, the cdc says stay home for just five days if -- and this is key here -- if you are asymptomatic by day five. the agency says this change is driven by data that shows most covid transmission is actually happening one to two days before someone has symptoms and in the two to three days after. it also comes as businesses across the country fashion the strain of employees at home in
isolation as omicron surges. >> i don't think this is going to contribute to more spread. i do think it's going to create an incentive for more people to get tested. and obviously for people who need to get back to their families, get back to their kids, get back to their jobs, it lets them do that as well. overall i think this is the right policy. it's a good balancing act. >> the cdc's new recommendations will permit us to cope with all of this disturbance and to trim it down to allow people to come back to work earlier and safely at very low risk. i would like to emphasize the latter. and that will help us in the new year begin to get our gears back into operation, and to function better. >> overwhelmed hospitals are issuing disaster declarations. some have called in the national guard because they don't have enough staff. and another change from the cdc for people exposed to covid, if you are unvaccinated or received
your last shot over six months ago, you should stay home for five days. but if you're boosted, you don't need to stay home at all. just another reason to get that booster. >> the shorter isolation times could help ease the mess we are seeing at airports across the country and the beleaguered air travelers of dealing with flight cancellations and all these delays. another 600 u.s. flights already canceled today. meantime, dr. anthony fauci is clarifying whether vaccine mandates are on the way for domestic flyers. cnn's shimon prokupecz has the latest from laguardia. >> reporter: laura and paula, more than 1300 flights canceled on monday and hundreds more expected on tuesday as airlines try to keep up with crew members and pilots calling out sick because of the coronavirus. they are moving crews around trying to get passengers home after the holiday weekend, which saw thousands more cancellations. of course, all this coming as
the omicron virus continues to spread through the country. the big question that was asked of dr. fauci, if passengers should be vaccinated. should there be a mandate for passengers to be vaccinated? here's what he said. >> everything that comes up as a possibility, we put it on the table and we consider it. that does not mean that it is going to be likely to happen. right now i don't think people should expect that we're going to have a requirement in domestic flights for people to be vaccinated. when i was asked that question, i gave an honest answer. it's on the table. >> reporter: with the new cdc guidelines shortening the time of isolation from ten days to five days, it could help with staffing shortages airlines are seeing. laura, paula? >> shimon, thank you for that. now, one critical factor, something significant to watch here is the number of children with covid. pediatric hospitalizations took a slight dip at the beginning of this month, but the numbers have been rising since then and are
getting close to the peak we saw in early september. in new york city the number of kids in hospital with covid increased five fold over a peer week period according to state data. a doctor in chicago said the number of young patients at children's hospitals has quadrupled. this is happening ads the education department stresses the importance of safe in-person learning. >> this is such an extraordinarily contagious virus, it's getting not only adults, but it's getting down into children, spreading among them. and even if the proportion of children who get serious illness is small, if you infect a very large number of children, there will be an increase in the number of cases of children who need hospitalization. >> in terms of transmissibility it's high including to children. i have a colleague who was on service last night at boston children's hospital emergency department, and saw multiple children with omicron -- well,
they don't know omicron for sure, but with coronavirus possibly or even likely omicron, although most of the cases are not very severe. >> so that's why there is this growing concern about hospitals getting overwhelmed with patients again. in illinois, advocate or health took out a full-page ad saying we can't stop covid without you. hospitals in ohio and minnesota made similar pleas. one e.r. doctor in michigan said the spread hasn't peaked in the midwest. >> as far as state numbers go omicron as they are seeing on the coast and as you're reporting on, we still have a full i.c.u.s across the entirety of west michigan. you know, the capacity is well over 100% still. it's probably 130% or so simply because they had to spapexpand different areas of the hospital to provide care. people stay an extremely long
time. >> the most coveted gift is a test kit. there are long lines and short supplies. >> it's crazy. i've been in line an hour 15 minutes to get two blocks. >> i was out of town monday, and started to feel bad. i probably got it in chicago. i want to make sure i'm clear and go back and be around kids and my wife. >> i've been to several places it's the same. >> last night i was out till 9:00 and couldn't find a test. >> it seems like everywhere there's lines, lines, like crazy like this. >> and the cdc is actively investigating or monitoring 68 cruise ships with covid outbreaks on board. the cruise industry was an epicenter of outbreaks during the early days of the pandemic. it staged a comeback in september with several preventive measures in place to curb the spread of the virus. the affected cruise lines include disney, norwegian and
caribbean. apple is closing all of its stores in new york city. they will be closed just to browsing. they will still be open for pickup orders. apple says a wave of covid cases among employees left stores unsafe and under staffed. and goldman sachs telling its employees they will be required to show proof of a vaccination booster shot before entering any u.s. offices. this new booster policy takes effect february 1st and applies to both staff and visitors. and breaking overnight, at least four people were killed and three others were injured, including a police officer after a shooting rampage in the denver area. the suspect opened fire across four different locations before an exchange of gunfire with police in the city of lakewood. police say the suspect was fatally shot. unclear if by police. >> we were just inside the store and heard, like, one gunshot, and then it sounded like they hit the side of the building and then obviously a bunch of cop
cars. i came out, and slipped us into the back. >> this is the holiday season. to have this type of spree take place is not normal for our community. we cannot lose sight of the victims in this, the people that are still fighting for their lives. i also want to commend both the lakewood police department and the denver police department for putting themselves in harms way to bring this person in custody or stop this spree from continuing. >> now, the motive of the shooting is unknown and the investigation, as you can hear, is clearly ongoing. there have been 686 mass shootings in the u.s. in 2021. and the year is obviously not over yet. that's more than double the number from just a few years ago. >> unbelievable. also breaking overnight, authorities are at the he scene mu of a plane crash near san diego. it went down between el cajon and lake side. >> we felt like this giant boom
shake up our whole entire house. i thought it was an earthquake or boulder from the hill come down. >> i plane actually landed on this road, pepper drive, in the middle of the road. it took out some power lines, but did not impact any homes. >> the san diego county sheriff's office said road closures are in effect and residents are being asked to avoid the area. firefighters found no survivors, and no word yet on what caused the crash. still ahead for you, use of deadly force by the l.a.p.d. under scrutiny this morning. body cam video shows the moments leading up to an accidental shooting death of a teenage girl and an officer repeatedly told to slow down. (k(kat to $1,000 wu switch. (carolers) ♪bebetter♪ (katate) because everyone deserves better. i don't just play someonone brainy on tv - i'm an actual neuroscientist. and i love the science behind neuriva plus. unlike ordinary memory supplements, neuriva plus fuels six key indicators of brain performance.
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north hollywood last week and fired several shots. one of the bullets went through the wall of a dressing room and struck the girl in the chest. her parents will speak publicly today. cnn's kuehne lah has more. >> reporter: laura, this is the perspective of the police department. they released body cam footage, 911 calls and store surveillance video. i want to warn you the video you are about to watch may be disturbing. in the store surveillance video, you see a man acting eradically. he is carrying a solid bike lock. he is attacking three random women. one of the women, he strikes her, pulling her by her hair, strikes her again until she is bloody. officers entering the store were arriving to multiple calls of a possible shooting in progress. they saw the victim as well as the attacker, and then they fired. >> get down!
slow down, slow down. let me go first with the rifle . >> she's bleeding, she's bleeding! >> stop firing. >> unbeknownst to the officers, a 14-year-old girl was in the changing room behind the wall that was behind the suspect and out of the officer's view. she was in the changing area with her mother when the shooting occurred. >> reporter: one of the bullets from the police department skipped off the floor and went through the drywall into the dressing room where 14-year-old valentina peralta was hiding with her mother. she was in her mother's arms, according to her family, and they were praying.
the l.a.p.d. did not recover a gun. valentina, just aged 14, died from a gunshot wound to the chest. paula, laura? >> thank you for that report. and russian troops pulling back from the border with ukraine ahead of talks with the u.s. a show of good will, or a ploy? cnn is live in moscow. so when you need to show your cold who's boss, grab mucinex all-in-one... and get back to your rhythm. ♪ the relief you need. the cash you want. nicorette knows, quitting smoking is freaking hard. you get advice like: just stop. go for a run. go for 10 runs! run a marathon. instead, start small. with nicorette. which can lead to something big. start stopping with nicorette. age is just a number. and mine's unlisted. try boost® high protein with 20 grams of protein for muscle health. versus 16 grams in ensure high protein. boost® high protein also has key nutrients for immune support. boost® high protein.
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cnn's nic robertson joins us from moscow this morning. nic, good morning. why would troops leave now after ratcheting up tensions were ukraine? >> reporter: well, russia's perspective on this is that all of those troops are not there to ratchet up tensions with ukraine. they've been there for regular routine military exercises on russia's territory, which they say is their prerogative, and is not designed to send, you know, a threatening message to ukraine. so what russia is saying right now is 10,000 of those estimated 70 to 100,000 troops have now done their military exercises, have trained out in the winter and now returning to their normal bases. this was mechanized infantry units, combat units, special forces units back at their base. that does leave a question about, well, what about the other remaining 60 to 90,000 estimated troops remaining? are they going to wrap up their drills and follow back to base? the diplomatic track does seem
to be open now while the united states is observing and trying to figure out has russia really moves these troops back to base and does it appear to be permanent, has equipment gone with them? all of those are key military questions. the russians are looking at january 10 for a meeting with u.s. officials. they are implying there is an upcoming meeting with nato a few days after that. and other european security organizations in the days that follow that. so russia's on this diplomatic track right now. but we heard from their deputy foreign minister today saying that he believes that these talks won't come to a quick conclusion. he's concerned about some of the issues that they say united states is also putting on the table as well as russia's concerns about an expansion of nato into ukraine. all of that is still all in play. and i think it remains unclear what putin, president putin's final intentions should be. have 10,000 troops gone back to base? it seems to be so. what does it really mean?
that is an open question. >> all right, nic, always great to have your analysis. thank you. in china, a city of 13 million people is under lockdown purporting the most daily covid cases in the city of china since the pandemic's original epicenter in wuhan in 2020. steven zhang is in wuhan. what are you learning? >> reporter: paula, just to put things in perspective, the record breaking was 175 locally reported cases in xi'an. here in this country it's a huge deal because of their continued insistence on a zero covid policy especially ahead of the beijing winter olympics which is less than 40 days away. that's why authorities in xi'an are doubling down on their strategy of mass testing and mass quarantine. but they say the kind of alarming numbers is only to be expected as they continue to conduct city wide testing for 13
million residents and a lot of the new infections are close contacts with previously confirmed patients. so these numbers will stabilize and start decreasing. they say this whole outbreak could be over in a month or so with the spread of the virus being stopped as a city wide lockdown remains firmly in place, along with other stringent policies, such as the cancellation of aldo l domestic flights from one of the country's busiest aviation hubs. 31 million passengers passed through the terminal last year. now almost completely abandoned. the city's top official saying that's what the city needs now to come to a complete stand still for the government to focus on its containment efforts. something obviously only possible in a political system like china's. paula? >> not clear it's working. thank you so much, steven, for that report. now to this. the u.n. is calling for an investigation into a reported christmas day massacre in myanmar that killed at least 35 people. that is according to the
humanitarian group save the children. two of their workers remain missing. photos of the charred remains of victims in torched vehicles are circulating on social media. activists say more than 1300 people have died since the military government seized power on february 1st. and more outrageous behavior in the skies. a woman caught on video punching and spitting at a man when she couldn't get to her seat. >> [ bleep ].
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or if you had a vaccine or plan to. emerge tremfyant® with tremfya®... ask you doctor about tremfya® today. nicorette knows, quitting smoking is freaking hard. you get advice like: try hypnosis... or... quit cold turkey. kidding me?! instead, start small. with nicorette. which can lead to something big. start stopping with nicorette the legendary military commander known for creating seal team 6 has died at the age of 81. richard marsenko was the first commanding officer at unit 6. the unit formed in 1980 that would later carry out the operation that killed osama bin lauden in pakistan ten years ago. here he is talking about military tactics on cnn back in 2012. >> we've come just light years in technology in how we fight
wars these days. and just as important is the fact that now we have integral intelligence built into the units that support and target like bin laudin. >> they said he died of a heart attack. he was 81. the country is divided even on the weather. some areas seeing record heat while others face bitter cold. here's meteorologist pedram javaheri. >> good morning. what an incredible way to wrap up the year in the u.s.. the western u.s. cold does shift gradually toward the east. one-third of the u.s. remains above average by the time we get to new year's day. around the west, the snow depth is incredible as it gets across the sierra, it will work its way through the cascades. 11 states under winter weather advisories. when you look at the sierras, almost 200 feet of snow in the month of december.
previous record 179 feet. a lot of this translates to drinking water for folks across california when it comes to snow melt in the spring. great news there. but how about these temperatures? maybe not so great news in parts of montana and wyoming. 10 to 20 degrees below zero. and then you look at what's happened across portions of the east coast into the southeast, parts of texas, louisiana, arkansas, 70s and 80s widespread. all of these getting into record territory as well. and upwards of 200, almost 200 records possible through the end of this week, and maybe some severe weather later in the week as well. guys? >> pedram, thank you. "early start" continues right now. ♪ good morning, everyone. this is "early start." i'm laura jarrett. >> and i'm paula reid in for christine romans. it is 29 minutes past the hour. >> paula, so nice to have you again. it's time for our top stories to keep an eye on today. the cdc has cut the recommended isolation time for people who test positive for
covid in half. if you are asymptomatic, you now need to isolate for only five days instead of ten days. this likely welcome news for businesses across the country facing the strain of employees at home while omicron surges. and a shooting spree in the denver area has left five people dead, including the suspect. one officer was injured in a shootout with the gunman and is undergoing surgery. the motive for the shooting is unknown and the investigation is ongoing. that's newly released l.a.p.d. body cam footage showing the moments leading to the police shooting of that 14-year-old girl, valentina peralta was in a dressing room when a bullet apparently passed through the wall fatally striking her in the chest. valentina's parents will speak publicly today. and the jury in the ghislaine maxwell sex trafficking trial resumes
deliberations this morning. the panel sent its 9th note to the judge on monday, requesting transcripts of gregory park in son's testimony. the former crime scene manager for the palm beach police was involved in a 2005 search of jeffrey epstein's home. a fourth college bowl game canceled this season because of covid. on monday, the boise state broncos pulled out of the arizona state bowl effectively cancelling it. the military bowl in annapolis, maryland, and the hawaii bowl have all been canceled as well. and a second time capsule has been found where the robert e. lee statue once stood in richmond, virginia. it will be opened this afternoon and the x-rays released by the governor's office showing what could be inside. details on that in just minutes. turning back now to our top story, the significant change from the cdc officially revising their recommendations on how long you need to stay at home if you test positive for covid. if you don't have any symptoms,
the cdc now says your isolation period is cut from ten to five days. this change, regardless of your vaccination status, by the way, was made after scientific studies showed the majority of covid transmission is coming during the early stages of the illness. the change also comes at a crucial point with work forces across the country feeling the pinch of staffing shortages. >> with the sheer volume of new cases that we are having and that we expect to continue with omicron, one of the things we want to be careful of is that we don't have so many people out. i mean, obviously if you have symptoms you should not be out. but if you are asymptomatic and you are infected, we want to get people back to the jobs, particularly those with essential jobs, to keep our society running smoothly. >> the new advice from the cdc not only could help the economy running, but may also help avoid
hospitals becoming overwhelmed with covid and other winter viruses. >> one of the interesting things we're starting to see during this surge, it's been very different than the first surge. during the first surge we saw majority of the patients were covid. this surge we're seeing a lot of sicker patients that had delayed care because of the different surges that went on, and now we're also starting to see a number of patients presenting with very low acuity coming in to be tested. >> it's time for three questions in maybe three minutes. let's bring in dr. elizabeth marie, emergency medicine physician. so nice to have you this morning. appreciate everybody you're doing right now. first i want to get your reaction to the new recommendations from the cdc. the cdc director says this is aimed at helping people continue their daily lives. it's always a balance, right, to try to figure out the right tipping point here. but it also relies a lot on the honor system. is it a smart move?
>> it's a maybe from me. i think the science is strong with regards to why this should work, but it requires everybody to make sure they are playing by these very strict rules. and there's two parts to the rules. first of all, you have to be asymptomatic and then you have to wear a high-quality well-fitted mask for an additional five days regardless of where you are. so it's that second half that i'm ail little nervous about because we know from the data the majority of cases are exactly what was previously stated. the most virulent period is early on. however, there are some cases that can get transmitted later on and that's why that second half is going to be so very important. adds long as we are careful with our essential workers and make sure that people are able to follow the rules and not being unduly pressured to get back to work if they are, in fact, symptomatic, then this is a great thing. this is helpful for so many people who want to, quote,
unquote, get back do our normal lives. >> the concern is this is a place that does not have universal paid leave. the quicker that some people can get back to work, the more they're going to be incentivized to do that. go ahead, paula. sorry to cut you off. >> no, it's a great point. as for kids, we know pediatric cases are skyrocketing now. what are you seeing in your e.r.? this appears to be different than previous surges. what is going on with covid and kids right now? >> for national perspective, there were 2,000 covid cases last week, the record being 250,000 cases in a week set in september. so that is a concerning number that we are certainly approaching. i will say that my top three infectious diagnosis during my last shift was covid, and a terrible stomach bug going around in the northeast, the pediatric numbers are climbing. the feeling of the e.d. was different.
there were many families who were sick and they were bringing their child in because they had taken a rapid test at home and it was positive. and they just wanted to make sure, there was much more of a sense of this is very real now. so many people kind of relied on kids don't really get that sick. and i think many interpreted it as kids don't get sick. that was never the case. we always knew children could get sick. the severity of the disease was less, however, the numbers are just quite high right now of children becoming ill with covid-19. >> so, doctor, as all of this is happening, in just a few days kids are going to be heading back to classrooms in-person. if you are the parent of an unvaccinated child, and i have a personal interest in this, how should you approach your child going back to in-person learning? my son, for instance, is going to have to test 48 hours before he goes back to school. do you think that's enough? >> well, i think it needs to be a multi-prong approach. that's always been the thing with the pandemic. we don't have one quick fix. the good news is school age
children 5 and up can now be vaccinated. if you have a 5-year-old child or older, take this week and get them vaccinated. at least get that series started. there are so many opportunities to do that in every community. but when your child heads back fully everybody has been making smart decisions during the break. that kind of 48 hours leading up to school being back in session kind of laying low at home, decreasing exposure so it decreases your chance of bringing covid back to the classroom. and we need to see children in high-quality, well-fitted masks. there are lots of cool masks out there for children that fit very well that are either the surgical grade quality or even a kn-95 mask. you want your child in a well-fitted mask. and, of course, watching very closely for symptoms. rapid testing is now a great addition. we have it. it often needs to be done at least two tests separated by about 12 hours. but i think that schools have historically proven that with safety guidelines, masking, distancing, testing that they
can keep kids in school safe and successfully. >> my household is basically doing multiple tests a week at this point. doctor elizabeth marie, thank you so much, appreciate having you on. and president biden add amiting to the nation's governors that his office should have dunmore to speed up tests. 500,000 coming too late. jeremy diamond traveling with the president in delaware. >> reporter: good morning, paula and laura. with covid cases skyrocketing, he hudles with governors to discuss the spread. he will get them the support they need. they just need to ask for it. what he also did during this meeting was acknowledge what has become an obvious failure to meet that coronavirus testing demand across the country. >> seeing how tough it was for some folks to get a test this
weekend shows that we have more work to do. i know the lines have gotten very long in some states. that's why i ordered fema to set up pop-up sites in places with high demand to shorten the wait. we went from no over the counter tests in january to 46 million in october. 100 million in november. almost 200 million in december. but it's not enough. it's clearly not enough. we have to do more. we have to do better, and we will. >> reporter: the president taking steps, though, to immediately ramp up the supply of coronavirus tests and the availability of testing across the country, signing a memorandum authorizing emergency funds to help the department of health and human services stand up more testing sites across the country in partnership with state and local governments. and in the scientific of just how fast moving this pandemic and the government's response has been, we saw the cdc on monday shorten that isolation period. the president just hours before that had said that he would follow the recommendation of his medical experts if they advise
the change to that. but just a few days earlier on friday, president biden said it was not yet the recommendation of his medical experts to shorten that period. beyond, of course, the science evolving, it is also clear that there are economic implications here. those airlines, for example, that have had to cancel flights, they have been putting a lot of pressure on the government to make changes because of economic ramifications. laura, paula? >> jeremy diamond, thank you for that. we've been talking about covid all morning. the cases of the flu also spiking across the united states according to the cdc. with omicron surge, the country now faces the dual threat of these viruses. last year there were very few cases of the flu mostly because more people were wearing masks and we had more indoor capacity limits and more social distancing. now researchers say one of the main flu viruses has mutated and current vaccines may not do much to prevent infection. but, and this is key, getting a vaccine should prevent severe illness whether it is the flu or covid.
and back on the ground, the justice department is closing out 2021 with a surge in grants for public safety programs in cities across the country. many of the cities are struggling with an increase in the homicide rate. whitney wild has more from washington. >> reporter: laura, paula, the justice department is announcing that hundreds of communities and organizations are either getting or can apply for some of a $1.6 billion pot to help reduce crime as a lot of cities grapple with a pretty significant surge in violence. these grants follow a very tumultuous period for many cities. they struggled with protests last year in the wake of the murder of george floyd, and in response to those protests, lawmakers in some cities like san francisco, minneapolis, los angeles and new york city proposed cutting back on their police department's budgets to redirect those funds into community programs. the justice department officials say that even the federal government intends to provide funds to help local authorities deal with a rise in crime in a
variety of ways. among the cities and their surrounding areas on the grants list includes places like seattle, chicago, baltimore, new york city and los angeles. and paula and laura, the grants can be pretty hefty sums. the largest state recipients include around 19 1/2 million to california's board of state and community corrections. 14 1/2 million to the office of the governor of texas. and nearly 11 million to the florida department of law enforcement. paula, laura? >> whitney, thank you. we'll be right back.
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another case of ugly behavior on airplanes. >> stand your ask up. stand your ask up. >> go ahead, karen. >> [ bleep ]. >> karen. >> that los angeles woman, 51-year-old patricia cornwall is facing federal assault charge. she is seen on video hitting and spitting on another passenger on a delta flight from tampa to atlanta. so, this all started when cornwall asked for help finding her seat. the flight attendant told her just grab an open one until the drink service was finished. to which cornwall responded,
quote, what am i, rosa parks? this is all according to a complaint, by the way. the other passenger told cornwall that was inappropriate. it escalated from there. cornwall now faces one year in prison and a $100,000 fine according to the faa. there have been nearly 5800 unruly passenger incidents so far in 2021. most of them mask related. saying unruly is sort of putting it mildly at this point, paula. >> right. people need to calm down. have some peanuts, a drink and chill. it's not that long a flight. >> you can't get a drink now. maybe that's the thing. >> anyway, overseas, demonstrations against coronavirus restrictions have turned violent in germany again as the divide grows in europe over how to handle omicron. some nations are tightening up while others resist imposing more rules. cnn's barbie nadeau is live at a testing site in rome where italians will see new restrictions for new year's. what are you seeing there on the
ground? >> reporter: well, you know, these restrictions are in full force already. we have to wear face masks outdoors all across italy. they pretty much canceled new year's eve celebrations. no fireworks. in rome no massive concerts. they banned people gathering on public squares. that turned people indoors. a lot of people are standing here in line to get tested behind me aren't symptomatic. they just want to make sure they're safe if they're going to a friend's house for new year's eve. we are also seeing in france new restrictions there will be coming into effect on january 3rd. they're going to allow people to do things on new year's eve, although no public events. and in england, though, they said they're not going to have any restrictions even though cases there are upwards of 100,000 cases a day. you're seeing across continental europe a varied approach to how they're trying to deal with this, how they're trying to get through the holiday season so they can get kids back to school so they can hopefully bring
these numbers down again after the holidays are over. paula? >> thank you so much for that report. all right. deadly flooding in parts of brazil leaving at least 20 people dead. nearly 40 cities feeling the pain. another visceral reminder of climate change in a country where the president continues to deny science. cnn's matt rivers reports now from mexico city. >> reporter: in many of the worst affected towns, they told reporters this level of flooding is the worst they've ever seen. some people have lived in these places for decades. in the streets of brazil's northeastern bahia state, some are resorting to rafts and jet skis to get around. others can only trudge through the fast-moving waters. locals doing what they can to cope, finding ways to carry on while deadly flooding surrounds them. >> translator: it's very sad to see our town like this. it's very sad.
i have never seen anything like it in my life. >> reporter: for weeks, intense rain has been pounding the area. then in recent days, two dams gave way. overwhelming towns that were already swamped. since the start of november, more than a dozen have been killed. scores injured. and tens of thousands forced from their homes. >> translator: there is a bridge over there. it's crazy. it's like the sea. there was a wave of almost 2 meters high. >> reporter: water now stretches as far as the eye can see. homes, roads, cars and land partly or entirely submerged in the wake of the devastation. one of the town's mayors blames human caused climate change. >> translator: we know rain can be seen as a blessing from god. but because of the ecological imbalance that we human beings have caused, there can be too much of it causing serious damage. >> reporter: rain in northeastern brazil is not
uncommon this time of year. local leaders say this is the worst in recent history. according to weather officials in the capital, rain is six times greater than average. emergency crews work to find anyone who may be trapped, hoping to stop the deadly rains from claiming another life. and according to cnn's weather team, there are some localized areas in bahia state that could see additional 4 or 5 inches of rainfall before all of this is said and done. laura, paula? >> matt rivers, thank you. important reporting there. covid has forced boise state out of its bowl game, but their opponents already have found a new game to play in. more on this morning's bleacher report. good morning, carolyn. >> good morning to you. this is a bit of musical chairs. it is not nearly as fun as the game. organizers are scrambling now to keep their games from getting canceled. we've seen cancellations already. boise state the latest team forced out. they were supposed to play in
arizona bowl, central michigan on friday. they are scrambling to find a new opponent for central michigan, they decided to take the spot vacated after miami had to withdraw due to its own covid issue. they will be in el paso on friday. the arizona bowl is canceled. in coordination with the cdc shortening of isolation guidelines for those without symptoms who tested positive for the virus, the nba is now going to allow vaccinated players and coaches to shorten their time frame in quarantine if they test positive. a league memo obtained by cnn says the quarantine can be reduced from ten days down to six. if testing determines that a player or a coach is no longer deemed infectious. in the meantime, the nhl returns tonight after a week long covid hiatus. three more games were postponed yesterday. that is now 70 games that have been impacted so far this season. and the nfl confirming 96 of its players tested positive for covid yesterday. more than 100 players have been placed on the league's reserve
covid list since christmas. so it's happening all over the place. the saints had 20 players on the reserve covid list last night against the dolphins and it certainly showed. ian brooks, the fourth starting quarterback of the season, harassed all night long by the dolphins defense. he was picked up twice, sacked eight times. 92 yards, receiving a touchdown on a miss direction play as well. so the dolphins win 20-3. they've won seven straight after losing seven straight. no team in nfl history has had a streak like that in the same season. pretty wild. and a wild moment here at the hornets/rockets game. trying to throw a crosscourt passed, he missed it so badly. two-handed overhead shot and it hit an unsuspecting woman in the stands. he couldn't believe it. now, the fan would be okay. she seemed to shake it off pretty well. he said on instagram after the game that he would offer the fan court side seats to a rockets game of her choice. he had 16 points in the loss to
charlotte. that right there is the play everybody is talking about this morning. i'm just glad that she was okay. that's not what you scientific up for when you go to a basketball game. >> no, not at all. but she handled it well. she shook it off. >> like a champ. >> now she gets court side seats. >> a win/win. >> thanks so much. >> thanks, carolyn. a second time capsule has been found where the statue of robert e. lee once stood in richmond, virginia. it will be opened this afternoon. >> we found it? that's what's up. >> the virginia department of historic resources says the copper box weighs 36 pounds. >> we got down to the bottom and found this harder material. seemed like it was fabricated, harder to move. so obviously it was trying protect something. that was our theory. so eventually we got the large excavator with the thumb, and the capstone slid off, and there it was.
>> x-rays released by the governor's office show what could be books, buttons and even ammunition from the civil war inside. if this all sounds familiar, a similar container was discovered almost two weeks ago when the statue's 40-foot pedestal was being dismantled. inside that lead container, an 1875 almanac, two withered books, a coin and a cloth envelope. >> curious to see what's inside the new one. and the power of social media helps a lost wedding band find its way back home. bob and katy man were eating at one of their favorite florida restaurants when bob dropped his wedding ring. thankfully a woman named michelle highser found it. >> i'm walking and look down skpee a gold ring. i said to my husband, that looks like someone's wedding band. and all i thought to myself when i saw the ring was, oh, my god, what if it was my ring or his ring, you know. i would want someone to try and find a way to get it back to me. >> so highser posted a photo of the ring on social media and
when someone recognized it, they alerted the manns. they got in touch with highser and described the inscription on the ring. she sent the ring just in time for christmas. >> i asked him if he had lost a ring. he said, no. he said, wait a minute, i don't have my ring on. he thought it was in the bathroom and he couldn't find it. it was just great they would follow through like that. >> i think they were more enthused than we were. >> highser said she plans to get her husband's ring inscribed just in case. sometimes social media is used for good. >> absolutely. those inscriptions can come in handy as we've seen. thanks for joining us. i'm paula reid. >> i'm laura jarrett. great to have you, paula. "new day" is next. (sighs wearily) here i'll take that! (excited yell) woo-hoo! ensure max protein. with thirty grams of protein, one gram of sugar, and nutrients to support immune health.