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tv   ABC World News Now  ABC  August 30, 2021 3:30am-4:00am PDT

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this morning on "world news now" -- hurricane ida turns deadly after slamming into louisiana as a powerful category 4 storm. at least one person is dead and more than a million customers are without power as ida's expected to dump as much as two feet of rain. >> also this morning a u.s. official confirms as many as five rockets were fired toward the main airport in kabul. the military's anti-projectile system was fired to intercept those rockets. plus the bombshell revelation in the criminal fraud trial of elizabeth holmes. the disgraced theranos founder is now reportedly set to claim she was the victim of an abusive relationship with her former boyfriend and sissartn. as ida slams new orleans, why so much of the big easy's battered ninth ward still remains in tatters 16 years
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after hurricane katrina. it's monday august 30th. >> announcer: from abc news this is "world news now." second to last day of august. are you ready? >> almost there. almost there. >> i don't know where there is. but we're almost there. >> time goes by fast. >> it's september before we know it. but that also means we are in the heart of the hurricane season and that is where we begin with a catastrophic hurricane unleashing destructive wi flooding along the gulf coast. >> one man was killed by a falling tree as ida pummeled louisiana overnight hours after making landfall as a category 4 storm, and it could dump as much as two feet of rain as it inches northward. this is the moment, check this out, when power went out in new orleans. lln customs non
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dark ck gerators are keing the city's pumps going. and for now the levees improved after hurricane katrina are still working. >> the only road to the coastal town of grand isle has been flooded by six feet of water. officials say the community could be cut off for weeks. we'll have to wait until daybreak to see the full scope of the damage. abc's elizabeth schulze has the latest from new orleans. >> reporter: hurricane ida is ripping through louisiana, leaving devastation in its path. ida coming ashore as a powerful category 4 storm and staying as a cat 4 for several more hours. >> this is one of the strongest storms to make landfall here in modern times. >> reporter: hurricane hunters flying into the storm's stunning 17-mile-wide eye. after landfall catastrophic storm surge of up to eight feet. winds up to 150 miles an hour. >> we are here in the heart of new orleans just as this storm has made landfall. you can feel how strong these winds are. this is the mississippi. this storm is testing the city's flood protection system. >> reporter: those systems and levees were built up after hurricane katrina exactly 16 years ago.
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officials here are still worried about heavy rain causing flash floods. >> we always talk about the storm but it's actually in some cases as dangerous after the storm. >> the surge that's anticipated is sure to bring significant flooding, high winds and create deadly conditions. >> reporter: hundreds of thousands in the state are already without power. >> conditions are still severe. throughout the city of new orleans. but also we have now lost power. it's very dangerous. in addition to the storm, also without electricity. but this is citywide. so this is the time to continue to remain in your safe places. not a time to venture out throughout our city at all. it's unsafe. >> reporter: president biden visiting fema for a briefing, saying the agency deployed 2,400 employees to the region. >> as soon as the storm passes
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we're going to put this -- we're going to put the country's full might behind the rescue and recovery. >> reporter: just behind me that's the mississippi river. behind is the french quarter. normally it would be lit up. tonight it is darkness. officials tell us it will be at least through the night while the power is out. likely it will be longer than that. but they also do say that some of those pumps that are needed to get the water out of the streets to avoid flash floods, that those are running using self-generated power. rachel and mona. >> all right, elizabeth schulze, thank you very much. >> and ida is going to be with us for several days. its rain and wind causing problems for millions as it moves north. >> wabc meteorologist jeff smith has a look at the forecast. >> reporter: after causing tremendous amounts of destruction across southeastern parts of louisiana the center of ida now approaching the louisiana-mississippi border. it's weakening into a tropical storm as we head into the morning hours. but at the same time, i mean, a place like new orleans still going to be getting tropical storm force wind gusts.
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that'll be hindering cleanup efforts around daybreak on monday. the worst of the weather heading into mississippi during the day up toward jackson, could be looking at 50-plus mile per-hour wind gusts by later on in the afternoon. and then the storm gradually weakens into a tropical depression. but transports a tremendous amount of moisture up into the tennessee and ohio valleys in the appalachians and eventually the big cities of the northeast as well by the middle part of the week. we could be looking at copious amounts of rainfall in these areas. and a lot of these places have had a lot of rainfall this summer. so already saturated ground. that could mean a flooding threat. in terms of additional rain maybe a half foot or more of additional rain on top of what you've had in southeastern louisiana, parts of mississippi and eventually parts of the appalachians and maybe parts of the i-95 corridor as well. mona, rachel, we'll send it back er tyo >> flooding and the need to rescue people who may be stranded is another chance for the u.s. veterans corps to mobilize. >> leonard harrison is with the group and he joins us on the phone. leonard, if you can hear me, we
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hear you're op your way to houma, a city hard hit by the storm. can you tell us what you're seeing or what you expect to see? >> well, we're already seeing high winds and heavy rain which we were already expecting but we're already pulling -- we've already been pulling trees off the interstate. if we're pulling trees off the interstate we can expect to have to cut our way through with our chainsaws. i've got guys here all the way from raleigh, north carolina all the way from florida that just decided hey, look, we're going to be the go-between, we're going to do what we can do. and that is the u.s. veterans corps's mission. that's what we're going to do. but we've got goliath here. so we're going to go down into the area and start rescuing. we've got about eight boats at trader joe's that we're going to -- or scuba joe's we're going to be going into. and once we've got the eight boats up and running we're going
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to be headed out and going through the water and doing what we can do to get people to safety. >> yeah. can you tell us about what resources your group plans to bring to help the storm victims? we know that so much of this damage will be seen as the sun rises. >> well, basically, right now it's manpower and goliath. goliath is a truck that sits up on 40-inch tires with an 8-inch lift nd i can drive in as long as the water's below five feet. and then we've got a bunch of boats that are accessible to us. so we can get the other trucks that we've got down close and then we off-load the boats and we just leave those trucks sitting there where they are. and we just get out there and do what we've got to do. but i mean, folks, the more the merrier. the more help that we get as far as financial, the better off we are. but i mean, our thing, we've got all the chainsaw oil we can use, all the chainsaw fluid we can
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use. we've got gas. we brought diesel. we brought anything and everything that we think would help us perform our mission. we've even got 30 or 40 tarps that are big tarps. and then we've got some huge tarps that we brought along so that we can make sure that if folks have roofs that are open before we leave we can knock it down and close it up so we can at least give them some semblance of protection. >> all right. leonard, thank you so much. leonard harrison with the volunteer corps. stay safe out there as well. but thank you for your time. all right. now to the hard-hit area of houma, louisiana where there was widespread damage earlier. i spoke with state representative beryl amedee about the situation in her community. >> it's pitch black because we have no electricity and the sun went down. but i can tell you what i have seen and what i expect to see when the sun comes up. the winds are still blowing here. i believe they are sometimes gusting at hurricane force
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still. we felt stronger winds today than i've ever experienced. i think we're going to have to reconsider what we calculated this storm at. if it did not come in at a category 5 i'd be surprised. there was major roof damage, downed trees, mobile homes being destroyed. there was debris flying everywhere. there are downed trees, power lines. it will probably be weeks before we get power restored. we're having problems with water pressure. little to no water pressure. so we're going to have to have some major utilities work that has to be done before businesses can reopen and things can get back to normal here. my greatest concern would be the mental health of people because as you know, we've been in a long-term health emergency. so we went into this storm already with a sense of anxiety.
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and the material things that are damaged can be recovered and i really expect we're going to hear we've had some loss of life but i think that the anxiety for this long-term state of emergency is just wearing. >> louisiana no stranger to hurricane season. state representative beryl amedee, thank you. >> coming up the new wildfire evacuation orders near lake tahoe. >> plus the breaking news overnight in afghanistan. as many as five rockets have been fired toward the main airport in kabul. and the fire that ripped through a 20-story apartment building in italy. what we're learning this morning. you're watching "world news now."
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a frightening scene played out in northern italy. fire ripped through this 20-story apartment building in milan. take a look at that. a frightening scene played out in northern italy. fire ripped through this 20-story apartment building in milan. take a look at that. the flames started on the top floors and quickly engulfed the rest of the building. one resident told a local paper that they were told that the building's exterior cladding panels were fireproof but instead they quickly burned "like butter." reports say about 20 residents were treated for smoke inhalation.n u.n day in delaware. the dignified transfer of 13 service members killed in thursday's suicide bombing in kabul took place at dover air
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force base. the president and first lady jill biden watched the arrival of the flag-draped remains. last week's attack was the deadliest for the u.s. military in afghanistan in more than a decade. in afghanistan a u.s. official confirms as many as five rockets were fired toward the main airport in kabul. the military's anti-projectile system was fired to intercept those rockets. it's not clear if any of them were hit. the news came just hours after officials say a u.s. drone targeted a dangerous vehicle near the airport, an indication america's final scheduled 24 hours in afghanistan will not be easy or safe. here's abc's ian pannell. >> reporter: with less than 48 hours to go, smoke rising outside kabul airport as the u.s. strikes isis-k militants for the second time. the military revealing an unmanned drone struck a vehicle near kabul airport, eliminating an imminent isis-k threat. the vehicle believed to be carrying a substantial amount of explosive material. an afghan official telling abc news that six civilians were
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killed. four of them children. the attack just a day after another u.s. drone strike in nangahar province took out two high-level isis-k members, a planner and a facilitator, and injured a third fighter. >> the fact that two of these individuals are no longer walking on the face of the earth, that's a good thing. >> reporter: the strikes bringing new urgency to the evacuation mission. hundreds once again clamoring at the gates to the airport, desperate as the final drawdown of u.s. troops gets under way. the state department again warning americans to stay away, citing specific credible threats surrounding the air field. only 50 u.s. citizens making it out of kabul in the last 24 hours. roughly 250 still seeking to get out. >> this is the most dangerous time in an already extraordinarily dangerous mission. these last couple of days. and so we will do everything ss but e s very high.>>eporter: wi
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days to go before all troops are withdrawn from the country, it's crystal clear that some of those who risked their lives to help the u.s.-led mission are going to be left behind. u.s. officials say they're working on alternative routes. but that's little comfort to those we've spoken to who are at home who say they feel abandoned and afraid. ian pannell, abc news, doha, qatar. >> ian, thank you. new evacuation orders are in place near lake tahoe because of a raging wildfire. the so-called caldor fire has scorched nearly 170,000 acres. crews actually lost some containment because of the fire on sunday. because of high winds. officials say over 21,000 structures are threatened. and coming up, the bombshell revelation just ahead of the elizabeth holmes trial. and later, as new orleans faces down another hurricane, why so much of the city remains unchanged 16 years after katrina. you're watching "world news now."
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medical device company that turned out to be a total fraud. >> former theranos ceo elizabeth holmes is now reportedly set to claim that she herself was the victim of abuse. here's abc's megan tevrizian. >> reporter: this morning a bombshell in the criminal fraud trial of elizabeth holmes. once considered the youngest female self-made billionaire. >> i know that we made so many mistakes on this front. >> reporter: with jury selection set to begin tomorrow we're now learning the disgraced theranos founder plans to claim she was the victim of a decade-long abusive relationship with her former boyfriend and theranos c.o.o. sunny balwani. >> elizabeth holmes is essentially alleging a decade-long history of systematic abuse by balwani in the form of he controlled every aspect of their relationship. >> reporter: recently unsealed court filings allege holmes and balwani had an abusive intimate partner relationship and that he exerted psychological and emotional control over her. holmes claims balwani controlled what she ate, how she dressed,
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how much money she could spend, and with whom she could interact. balwani denies the allegations. >> the prosecution is going to try to poke holes in this defense. they're allowed to have their expert interview elizabeth holmes and likely that expert is going to say that she did not suffer from this type of abuse or this syndrome. >> reporter: holmes and balwani each face 12 counts of fraud accused of misleading patients, doctors and investors with their much-hyped blood testing technology. the two later admitted they'd never made the relationship public to investors. >> we will change our lives and our world. >> reporter: the unsealed court documents also revealing holmes plans to testify in her own defense. she allegedly plans to reveal she suffers from ptsd and other mental health conditions. the trial is expected to last three months. if convicted holmes could face 20 years in prison for each count of fraud. rachel, mona. >> megan, thank you.
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coming up, we give you the latest on ida. >> and a battered new orleans. 16 years after katrina why so many parts of the city have not yet been rebuilt.
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find out if you policy qualifies. or call the number on your screen. coventry direct, redefining insurance. we come back to you now with a look at new orleans this morning. the entire city in the dark after being pounded by hurricane ida for hours. but so far the new levees there are g up. as new orleans braces for ida, the city is still struggling to get back to where it was 16 years ago before hurricane katrina. >> abc's ginger zee takes us through the big easy's still battered ninth ward. >> reporter: 16 years to the day after katrina and the infamous ninth ward has less than 40% of their pre-katrina population. there are still houses -- >> yes. >> reporter: -- that are not back. 16 years later. 16 years. >> yep. >> reporter: arthur johnson knows the ninth ward's history and wants to change its future.
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>> this was the area historically more white people lived in and were allowed to live. and black people were allowed to build in lower nine but on the other side toward below sea level. >> reporter: those geographic inequities gave way to white flight in the 1960s and a suburban oasis in the city of new orleans was born. >> prior to katrina the lower ninth ward was one of the top communities in the country, communities of color per capita, of home ownership. >> reporter: and then katrina. generational homes lost. and while today they are more protected from storms -- so this is a levee. it looks like just a big hill with a lot of grass on it. on the other side is the mississippi river. it has been built up since katrina. it can now handle up to 20 feet of storm surge. we don't expect more than 11 feet with ida. so that will be okay. but this story isn't then about whenbo inequity.
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to see newcomers come in who are pricing out the folks who lived here originally. >> right. >> reporter: and beyond the property tax and beyond the lower ninth ward there was insurance injustice. fema's flood insurance recently updated because until now no matter if you owned a mansion or a cottage you had to pay the same. >> we're going to be able to price it fairly going forward. currently lower value homes are paying more than they should. and higher value homes are paying less than they should. >> our thanks to ginger zee. it's hard to believe how much time has passed. and also just to look at the fact -- to remember the fact that those images are -- remain innd oo ing help flood waters up to the roofs.
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people displaced for a very long time as well. >> and t
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right now on "america this morning," hurricane ida's wrath. the historic category 4 storm slamming ashore with catastrophic flooding. up to 20 inches of rain, reports just coming in of a levee failing south of new orleans. hundreds of people in imminent danger. >> the entire city of new orleans losing power overnight. hospital patients being evacuated. towns completely cut off. >> reports of people stranded on their roofs. others in their home with water up to their chest. a barge taking down the bridge leading to one town. >> we felt stronger winds than i've ever experienced. >> we're live from new orleans and across the storm zone. plus, where the storm heads from here. the extreme flood threat through

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