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tv   NBC Bay Area News at 11AM  NBC  August 18, 2021 11:00am-11:30am PDT

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right now at 11:00, get ready to roll up your sleeve again. top white house leaders giving the green light for a booster shot. plus, there's a pink and orange hue over the bay area as smoke rolls in and thousands could be in the dark facing power shutoffs. we're now under a micro climate weather alert due to unhealthy air concerns. good morning and thanks for joining us for our midday newscast. i'm laura garcia. >> and i'm scott mcgrew in for marcus washington. >> look at the haze that is blanketing the skies over the bay area. let's check in with meteorologist kari hall. she's tracking these really
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serious and dangerous -- conditions. >> the air quality is getting worse and will continue into the afternoon. really starting to see those sensors show moderate to the east bay. even here we are tomorrow afternoon, it's still going to be smokey, although we may see some minor improvements right along the immediate coast line. but we have all of these very large fires putting large billows of smoke into the air, and now with the northerly wind it's pushing that right into the bay area. so with the high wind gusts we also have the high fire concerns, especially for our elevations above 1,000 feet. and as we go into the rest of today, the winds will gradually calm down as we've seen more of a northerly wind that will turn westerly heading into tomorrow. but it does still look like that smoke will linger. we'll talk about that as well as that fire danger coming up in a few minutes. just in, firefighters in the north bay rush into action to
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prevent a vegetation fire from growing. our sky ranger shot this video of crews in the mill valley area. the fire broke out around 9:00. crews were able to contain the fire after about an hour. some homes were evacuated for a short time. the caldor fire is growing. it's burned more than 53,000 acres. it was only 6,000 yesterday. now the town of pollock pines is empty. people who lived there say they lost everything including a post office and a school. two people suffered serious injuries while trying to get out. the cause of that fire is not yet known. pg&e says it'll likely cut power to more homes to prevent fire risk. thousands of families woke up in the dark this morning in napa county. more than 50,000 customers may lose power including people in ala media, contra costa, napa
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and sonoma counties. generally you know ahead of time you're going to lose power. we've posted an interactive map at you click the link that says map pg&e power shutoffs at the top of the page. federal health officials are proving a third booster shot for most americans. nbc bay area's cierra johnson live in san francisco with more on that along with new testing site that just opened up this morning. cierra? >> reporter: yes. good morning. let's start with information on that booster shot the nation's health leaders are recommending booster shots for folks that have completed either the moderna or pfizer vaccines. it's recommended that that booster shot is given eight months after receiving their second dose. now, this move is recommended after research show that vaccine efficacy decreases over time. that information combined with that contagious variant that we're seeing across the nation. take a listen to the u.s. surgeon general address the
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booster shot. >> recent data makes clear that protection against mild and moderate disease has decreased over time. this is likely due to both waning immunity and the strength of the widespread delta variant. >> reporter: and here locally after that announcement was made, there was some progress here at the testing facility. san francisco working to provide additional access to covid testing. the site opened today at the intersection of 7th and brandon. the site is appointment only. it's drive-through or walk-through. and it is open seven days a week. the site is expected to give 500 tests each day. this is really about having a peace of mind. >> it's really convenient living in the city and being able to just drive through and make this happen. >> reporter: and those tested can expect to have their results
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in 24 to 48 hours after they have received that test. so we've seen a good number of folks coming through. it's a little bit of a lull right now, but it's appointment only. so you can search online for how to schedule this location. cierra johnson for nbc bay area news. president biden is expected to deliver remarks on the covid-19 vaccine booster at 1:30 today. nbc news will break into regular programming bringing you this announcement in a special report. sonoma county workers will have to get vaccinated. supervisors voted to make all county workers submit proof of vaccination or undergo regular covid testing. this will start on the 7th of september. if an exemption they'll have to be tested regularlyinhe south bay's bigge
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feelings for kids and parents. kris sanchez joins us with what families here can expect. good morning. >> reporter: well, hi, scott. i wore a little waterproof mascara this morning myself because it's the first day of school for my kids and the rest of san jose unified's 30,000 students. and while there was a lot of excitement i can tell you there were some butterflies, too. drop-off was lively outside trace elementary in san jose where most students were returning to school in person for the first time in almost two years. this mom echoed what we heard from a lot of other parents, too. >> i'm happy that they're back because last year was a struggle. but there is concern obviously. covid is very much real, and it's a little scary, but if this is what it is, i mean, i guess we have to adapt to it. >> reporter: and this district has adapted. more than 90% of staff is vaccinated. and those that are not are testing twice a week. everyone will wear masks except while eating and drinking and
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hand sanitizing will be a regular part of the day. the superintendent says that with those protocols school is safe. >> we know that our students are excited but also some are anxious about being in school. many have not been in school for a long time. so we have our counselors available, all of our support staff. we have the largest staff of nurses in the county for the school district. and so we're really happy that we have that support. >> reporter: the superintendent says that there's also a plan for when students or staff members are infected. this grandmother feels good about the plan. >> they're very excited to go back and see their friends and stuff and hang out and do schoolwork instead of computer work. i feel safe. if we follow the guidelines with the covid and the new one that just came out, we're going to be fine. >> reporter: and while our first thought might be about safety, the kids are excited to get back to the learning. >> mathematics.
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[ laughter ] >> reporter: yeah, you heard that right. they were chanting math, math, math. so they are obviously eager to get back to school. by the way, there is a whole flow chart for what happens when there is a positive case at school. if a student is exposed to somebody while wearing a mask but they are asymptomatic, they can continue going to school in person and not lose any educational time so long as they don't have any symptoms. any students or staff that are sick or test positive, they're going to quarantine at home. they won't be back on campus until they test negative. so, again, lots of thoughts, lots of protocols, but it will hopefully all become the new normal. and by next week it'll feel like the old new -- or the new old. i don't even know. >> right. >> kris sanchez, nbc bay area news. >> i will tell you, i'm impressed to see the superintendent there. if they are doing hand sanitizer they are taking it serious from the top on down.
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well, the situation seemingly developing by the minute in afghanistan as of this morning up to 15,000 americans still in afghanistan with the u.s. racing to try to get them back home. >> officials say taliban checkpoints are making it difficult for those outside of kabul to reach the airport. >> reporter: we made it onto the military side of kabul airport, the last place in afghanistan where the american flag still flies. here is where the united states is overseeing an elaborate evacuation from the country. the evacuation is mostly focused on airlifting americans and other foreign nationals. and afghans who manage to obtained visas and who are happy to leave. i spoke to a group of afghans who all worked on this base for years, earning around $500 a month to be cleaners and cooks. not one has obtained a visa. and what would happen to you or you or you if you go back home? are you worried for your safety?
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>> absolutely. they go searching the homes. >> if we were outside of course they would kill us. >> reporter: what bothers them isn't just the lack of action but the lack of concern. >> this is the first time that somebody ask about our lives. nobody before comes to ask what's your problem, dangerous or no, nobody. >> so us talking to you? >> this is the first time. >> reporter: just outside the airport, there are still many afghans pushing to get in, including many women begging to get out of the country so they don't have to live under the taliban. and an update to that story just in the last few moments a state department official has met with the afghan workers on this base and assured them that efforts are underway to get their families onto the base and to get both them and their families visas to leave the country. richard engel, nbc news, kabul. meanwhile back here at home, if you get vaccinated there's a
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slight chance you could still get infected. questions swirling around breakthrough cases. >> the reason top health leaders are asking the cdc to start tracking these infections. plus, nbc bay area -- >> a mom wants to spoil her kids for the day, but a company spoils her plans. i'm consumer investigator chris chmura. nbc bay area responds, next.
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it's never been easier to wipe out this virus. the covid-19 vaccine is safe, effective, and free. make your appointment today at or call 2-1-1 to protect yourself and your family. learn how to get the covid-19 vaccine today. but as we've evolved with the military, we've grown to serve all who've honorably served. no matter their rank, or when they were in. a marine just out of basic, or a petty officer from '73.
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and even his kids. and their kids. usaa is made for all who've honorably served and their families. are we still exclusive? absolutely. and that's exactly why you should join. we have some breaking news that we're following this midday. as police are responding to reports over a freeway shooting. this is on 280 southbound near mariposa. we understand king street, 6th street in mariposa closed down. use 101 as an alternate right now. the chp san francisco saying that these are going to be shut down for an unknown period of time. they'll keep us posted. and we have nbc bay area skyranger launched this morning heading to that scene. the latest on the pandemic.
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we now know the vaccine will not stop you necessarily from getting covid. sometimes rarely breaks through. some in the medical community say there may be far more breakthrough infections than we know because the cdc is not officially tracking that data. >> so what does it mean for people who are and who are not vaccinated? nbc's vicki nguyen went looking for answers. >> reporter: in the headlines. >> covid breakthrough infections. >> reporter: from athletes. >> the outbreak in the new york yankees' clubhouse. >> reporter: to politicians to everyday americans. >> when i tested positive i was, like, what is going on? >> reporter: so, what is breakthrough covid? it's when a person tests positive at least two weeks after being fully vaccinated, sometimes without any symptoms. other times feeling classic covid symptoms, loss of smell and taste, fever, aches and cough. an nbc news analysis found health departments in 42 states have recorded a total of at least 248,000 breakthrough
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cases. while the cdc does not track those infections, they do record hospitalizations and deaths from breakthroughs. as of august 17th, the cdc has reported 7,600 cases where a fully vaccinated person with covid was hospitalized, and almost 1,600 cases where someone died. still, it's a tiny fraction of the 168 million americans who are fully vaccinated. >> who was surprised that they got sick? >> reporter: we spoke with four people who told us they're among those with a breakthrough infection. did you change your behaviors after getting the shot? >> absolutely did. i stopped wearing a mask two weeks after i got my second dose. >> i definitely started hanging out with friends more. >> reporter: jessica and jack both have the pfizer vaccine. adam had moderna and reesa had the johnson & johnson single shot. what were your emotions when you learned you had tested positive even after being fully vaccinated? >> disappointment and
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frustration. i can't believe this is happening after all of this time. like, we've been so careful. it's really just like a gut punch. >> reporter: they experienced a range of symptoms. >> i started out with a head cold. i thought that it was just allergies. >> fever, chills, fatigue. i had a terrible headache. >> reporter: all four told us they had body aches and a fever. >> the symptoms only lasted maybe three to four days. >> reporter: and two of the four had a bad cough. >> i was quite sick. and my wife was, too. >> reporter: while they said they weren't hospitalized, nor did they experience any major respiratory issues, they all said they temporarily lost their sense of smell. >> the vaccines work, but don't expect the vaccine to prevent you from getting infected. >> reporter: dr. kavita patel is a primary care physician and nbc news contributor. are these breakthrough infections more common than you expected? >> it's a little higher than expected, especially what itein.
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>> reporter: what do you say to people who question the effectiveness of the vaccines if we're seeing so many breakthroughs? >> these vaccines are miracles. one, they prevent death. almost all throughout these breakthrough cases we do not see people dying, we do not see people having severe hospitalizations ending up in intensive care units. that is an incredible reason to get the vaccine. >> are there any groups that are more likely to experience a breakthrough infection? >> the majority of breakthrough infections we're seeing with limited data tend to be older. we're seeing people at all ages getting breakthrough infections. >> reporter: do any of the vaccines make you more susceptible to a breakthrough infection? >> no. we are seeing breakthrough infections across all three vaccines in the united states. >> reporter: these four believe the vaccine protected them from getting severely ill. >> we're all way more protected. >> i just think that the more people who get vaccinated, the safer we all will be. new video this morning of the devastation that tropical storm grace is leaving on haiti. that country hit with the
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destructive weather after a ace battered southwestern haiti with flooding, temporarily halting search and rescue efforts after the 7.2i' civil protection agen says more than 2,000 people are dead. nearly 10,000 are hurt. california's drought may lead to possible drastic new measures from governor newsom. the governor says he may have to order mandatory water restrictions in six weeks' time. he talked about it while touring big basin in the santa cruz mountains yesterday, an area ravaged by wildfire last year. he is asking for voluntary reductions of 15%. we hope the rainy season returns in october. >> that would help with this. this is new video from the skyranger shot. smokey skies across the bay area. looks hard to breathe out there. it's
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3:30, 4:00 a.m. since i've been outside but it looks terrible. >> it does look terrible. and the air quality i'm looking at all those sensors and they're starting to turn yellow, orange, red. that means unhealthy air quality. so we are seeing that at ground level, too, even though a lot of it for the past few days has been a little bit higher up. take a look at this view from cupertino looking over the south bay, and you can see in the foreground visibility is clear, but then as you go in the distance it's hard to see anything beyond that little sheet of smoke that's been lingering over the south bay. it's really been rolling in here in the past couple of hours. now as we take a look at our near surface smoke model, this shows reds and some of those brighter colors indicating unhealthy air quality. it looks like it continues into the day tomorrow and only gets slightly better toward the end of the week before we get a
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stronger westerly wind. but we've been talking about the location of all of those fires. and they're just to the north and east of us. so when you get a northerly wind that smoke comes right into the bay area and that shift in the wind has made all the difference from the past 24 hours. and it's also been quite gusty. that increases the risk that we could see some new fire starts, especially in some of our north bay hills where those winds are at about 25 to 35 miles per hour. into this evening it does look like the winds start to calm down, although a lot of us in the valleys haven't really been feeling those gusty winds for our hills that's where we do have the red flag warning. that will be in effect through 3:00. so these areas shaded in red for the diablo range as well as much of the north bay mountains, that's under that red flag warning. you can see how many acres they burned and the containment levels. and then when the wind shifts or picks up it causes those fires to spread in different
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directions and also causes more smoke to billow into the atmosphere as they spread at a rapid pace. comparing the burnt acreage to this day last year, we had 853,000 acres burn. now that was crazy. but then take a look at how many we have now, 1.1 million acres have burned. and the year average, the five-year average is about 708,000 acres. and that's over the course of the whole fire season. really bad as we head deeper into our wildfire season, and it's also very dry. but then as we take a look at these temperatures we have some low to mid-80s in the forecast. and this low that's caused those winds to really pick up for us today starts to move away. the winds calm down, and then going into the weekend we are going to see another increase in wind speeds but also a stronger ocean breeze, and hopefully that helps improve our air quality. we're going to see our temperatures not really changing too much. mostly mid- to upper 80s and in
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san francisco and along the coast, mostly upper 60. but the air quality will be changing over the next few days. but it does look like for now this smoke is here to stay for the next couple of days. >> thanks so much, kari. nbc bay area responds to a mom who spent hundreds of dollars to treat her kids to a day of fun. >> it turns out the place she booked was no longer even doing business there. >> good morning. this is a story about billy bs which is basically a big indoor playground. its website says you'll hear the fun before you walk in. but allison garner and her kids only heard crickets because the san jose location closed. that was a problem because mom had prepaid $316 for the passes that were now basically useless. next closest location is near l.a. allison expected a full refund. she told us she wrote and
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called, but crickets again. so she asked us to take a look. we gave their corporate office a buzz. it said it didn't have any record allison had reached out. nonetheless a worker bee took action and sent us a statement saying as soon as we became her. go to, click the responds option from the main menu or give us a call at 888-966-tips. >> thank you, chris. coming up, move over thin mints. girl scouts have a brand new cookie. why they may become an instant classic. we'll tell you when you can possibly get your hands on a box. the department of justice and the department of homeland security are proposing new rules to make the asylum process faster and more fair. the proposed rule would allow immigration service offices to
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make decisions currently assigned to immigration judges. a statement from the attorney general says it will protect the rights of those fleeing persecution and violence. we'll be back after the break. we're taking you along with us as we discover the best california has to offer, from food to lifestyle and everything in between, we're covering the entire state on "california live," weekdays at 11:30 a.m. on nbc bay area.
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just didn't feel like things were as sharp as i knew they once were. i heard about prevagen and then i started taking it about two years now. started noticing things a little sharper, a little clearer. i feel like it's kept me on my game. i'm able to remember things. i'd say give it a try. prevagen. healthier brain. better life. well, perhaps your next favorite girl scout cookie will come to a pop-up booth or a
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table near you very soon. >> the girl scouts unveiling a new cookie for the coming season. if brownies are your thing this may do the trick. they're called adventure fulls. girl scouts are getting fancy. keep an eye out for it when the girl scouts start doing their thing again in the early new year. >> thin mints for you and what for u?hi mints, too. >> smokey out there. >> yes it is. and we're going to be watching the air quality throughout today. and our temperatures for some of our warmest spots inland only reach into the mid-80s. we're going to see more of that into the weekend with a breezy wind for san francisco mostly upper 60s. i think the main story will be the fire danger and the air quality for the next 24 hours at least. >> so concerned for all those fires that are burning. well, we're keeping track of all of it. >> and you can also get the latest information we'll see you tomorrow morning.
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>> have a good one. leaving you with a live look outside at the beautiful golden gate bridge. smoke across the bay that we're talking about. we'll see you bright and early tomorrow morning 4:30 to 7:00 a.m. for "today in the bay."
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right now on "california live," get ready for your close-up. ross is taking us to a spot that is picture-perfect up in the bay. >> art is the eye of the beholder. then, lose the mask and enjoy the ocean air. lisa's doing lunch near the beach. >> we're just steps from the ocean and checking out the newest restaurant in manhattan beach. plus, leila's going to satisfy her sweet tooth. >> they have big cakes, mini cakes and some retro treats. and amber's uncovering a special spa that will put you on
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