April 15, 2013

   

Joe Dombrowski to Skip Giro

Citing inexperience, knee injury

He may have won the amateur version of the Giro d'Italia last year, but Joe Dombrowski is going to have to wait until 2014 for a shot at the real thing. Team Sky has announced that the 21-year-old American would not be part of their squad for the upcoming tour.

"I feel like I'd be capable of doing the job, but I just don't want to go and screw up the team time trial or whatever," Dombrowski told VeloNews.

Over the winter, Sky put Dombrowski on its tentative roster for the Giro d'Italia, a surprising move since his longest race before had been the amateur Girobio, or "Baby Giro".

Besides a nagging knee injury which Dombrowski blamed on a new bike, Sky management cited the young rider's inexperience with team tactics. "We don’t want to put too much pressure on him to perform,” Sky general manager David Brailsford said. “We don’t want to have him thinking, ‘Ah, I’m going to mess it up for Brad Wiggins, he’s not going to win the Giro.'"

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    Photo: Via Twitter

Ongoing Coverage of the Boston Marathon

Several dead, dozens injured

(Click to update)

 


6:20 p.m. EST

New York's Governor Cuomo announces that the National Guard has deployed 230 soldiers to assist the NYPD and MTA with additional security.

5:55 p.m. EST

Boston University posted an announcement on their web site claiming that the third unidentified victim is a graduate student who was watching the race with two friends near the finish line. The student’s name may be released “pending permission from the family.”

5:45 p.m. EST

From the White House: “The President will travel to Boston [Thursday] to speak at an interfaith service dedicated to those who were gravely wounded or killed in Monday's bombing near the finish line of the Boston Marathon."

5:25 p.m. EST

FBI agent Richard DesLauriers at an early evening press conference:"Regarding who might be suspected in this event, the investigation is in its infancy.... Some of our activity you might see, some of it you won't... At this time there are no claims of responsibility... the possibilities are wide open."

Press conference is currently live on CBS. Watch a live stream here.

Experts say they are skeptical that the attack was home-grown: “The bottom line is that no domestic extremist movement just based on their ideology alone would have a huge reason to attack the Boston Marathon."

4:50 p.m. EST

The Boston Globe's Shelley Murphy has more information on the exact location of the bombs. One was placed across the street from where Governor Deval Patrick had been sitting earlier.

The most recent figure for the number of injured stands at 183. CNN's Ryan Sloan is reporting that 89 of those people have been released.

Local police and firefighter unions are offering a $50,000 reward for information in the bombings. 

3:20 p.m. EST

 Investigators believe they have found the circuit board used to detonate the bombs.

2:50 p.m. EST

A Facebook event has been created to organize a walk that would complete the last five miles of the course.

In light of today's tragedy, let's remember, honor, and stand up for all those affected by the incident that occurred at the 117th Boston Marathon. We invite everyone to join us on Friday, April 19 at 4:30pm to walk from BC to Boston to stand united. For anyone who did not get to finish, For anyone who was injured, and For anyone who lost their life ... we will walk. We will walk to show that we decide when our marathon ends.

So far, 12,500 people have committed to attend.

2:45 p.m. EST

The New York Times is reporting that the explosives used in the blast consisted of a "pressure-cooker" device packed with pellets and sharp "nail-like" objects.

In a separate post, CNN says they have spoken with a "senior U.S. official" who says there is no indication that al-Qaeda is involved. Fox News editor Jon Passantino is reporting that the Saudi student whose apartment in Revere, MA was searched by police earlier today has been cleared as a suspect.

2:05 p.m. EST

Per The Boston Globe, the Saudi embassy spokesman Jail Aljubeir says the Revere, MA, man is not a suspect in the bombings and is "more a witness than anything else."

1:40 p.m. EST

The London Marathon will hold 30 seconds of silence at the start of Sunday's race, says ABC's Job Williams.

1:05 p.m. EST

A second victim has been identified as Krystle Campbell, a 29-year-old resident of Medford, MA.

Bill Richard, father of 8-year-old victim Martin Richard, has released a statement: "We thank our family and friends, those we know and those we have never met, for their thoughts and prayers."

12:20 p.m. EST

Reports are now coming in that the explosive were placed in 6-liter pressure cookers and placed in black duffel bags.

Doctors say they have been removing nails and ball bearings from the injured. It's likely they were part of the bomb.

Investigators are asking for anyone with photos of the Boston finish line to send them to boston@ic.fbi.gov for analysis.

Boston's flag is flying over New York City Hall today.


Via Howard Wolfson/Twitter

11:50 a.m. EST

Police have executed a search warrant on an apartment in Revere, MA, just north of Boston. Officers were seen carrying several large bags from the house.

Updated casualty figures: 3 dead, 176 injured, with 17 in critical condition.

Officials told CBS News that the two bombs were disguised to look like discarded property.

CNN reporter Lisa Desjardins tweeted a photo of 8-year-old victim Martin Richard holding a sign at his school peace walk.

10:40 a.m. EST

We've posted a series of firsthand accounts from the handful of our writers that were competing.

4/16, 6:45 a.m. EST

The Boston Globe has identified the 8-year-old victim of the blasts as Martin Richard, the son of a runner from Dorchester, Massachusetts.

10:10 p.m. EST

A third death has been confirmed in the bombings.

8:15 p.m. EST

The Boston Globe is reporting that police are questioning a person of interest at Brigham and Women's hospital.

CNN has raised the number of injured being treated to 130.

ABC says that the explosions are believed to have been caused by "small portable devices."

Mass. General Hospital says that they are not on lockdown for a suspicious device, contrary to reports.

7:15 p.m. EST

NYT now reporting that a total of three unexploded devices were found by police.

7:00 p.m. EST

ABC News is reporting that the bombs were triggered remotely.

Gideon Gil, The Boston Globe's Health and Science editor, reported that 115 people are now being treated at 7 different Boston hospitals.

Reuters has a map graphic showing the marathon route and the exact location of the explosions.

6:45 p.m. EST

Bloomberg News:"White House says Boston Marathon explosions 'act of terror': official"

CBS's Alex Romano says a Saudi national is in fact in custody but denies involvement. Citing FBI source.

6:40 p.m. EST

NBC is now reporting that one of the two people killed was an 8-year-old.

6:25 p.m. EST

Differing reports on the state of cell service in Boston. Sprint spokeswoman Crystal Davis said, "Minus some mild call blocking on our Boston network due to increased traffic, our service is operating normally."

The third "explosion" in the JFK library was just a fire. It started in the mechanical room and is now out. All staff and personnel are accounted for.

6:15 p.m. EST

President Obama spoke for several minutes and did not answer questions: "We still do not know who did this, or why."

6:00 p.m. EST

President Obama will give a statement on the bombings at 6:10 p.m. EST. Watch a live stream here.

Spokesperson for the Boston Police say no one has been taken into custody: "At this time, we haven't been notified of any arrests or anyone apprehended."

FAA has ordered a No-Fly Zone over the site of the explosions.

5:45 p.m. EST

Fox 29 claims to have confirmed that a "person of interest" is in custody regarding the bombings. No mention of nationality.

5:40 p.m. EST

Outside's Bob Parks had just completed his first Boston Marathon when the first bomb detonated across the street. He said the explosion seemed to come from the side of a building. The force of it caused a temporary stampede.

New York Post say they have confirmed from "law-enforcement sources" that 12 are dead. They also say that authorities have identified a suspect—a Saudi national—and are keeping them under guard at an undisclosed Boston hospital. No other sources have reported this.

5:30 p.m. EST

Updated casualty figures: 2 dead, 90 wounded.

5:15 p.m. EST

Outside's Erin Beresini was reportedly stopped .3 miles from the finish line.

Boston Globe now reports more than 100 are being treated in area hospitals for injuries.

Boston Police are unsure if the third explosion at the JFK library is related. No injuries reported yet.

Boston.com has first-hand footage of one of the explosions. WARNING: Graphic content.

5:00 p.m. EST

The Boston Globe has tweeted revised casualty numbers: 2 dead, 64 wounded.

According to CBS, Police have suspended cellular service in the area, fearing a phone may be used to detonate a device.

4:50 p.m. EST

The Boston Globe has reported the exact locations of the two unexploded devices. One "on the glass footbridge over Huntington Ave near Copley place," the other "reported near the Harvard #MBTA station." Police have also cordoned off a block of Commonwealth Ave. Reports of a suspicious package.

Redditor Throwaway-apr15 has compiled a list of all the runners who were in the area within one minute of the explosion.

4:40 p.m. EST

Corresondent Whitney Dreier, who was entered in the race, is reporting from a hotel on lockdown. She says that 2 are dead and 28 injured. After the two initial explosions, police have detonated a third explosive device.

The Atlantic's photo blog In Focus is gathering images from the scene. WARNING: Very graphic.

Boston police are calling in all off-duty officers.

4/15, 2:30 p.m. EST

Reports are flooding in of multiple explosions near the finish line of the Boston Marathon. Two separate detonations were reported near the Boston library. There is no word yet on who or what is responsible.

Accounts on the number of injuries are varied, but the Boston Globe, who have a reporter on the scene, say dozens of people are injured.

BREAKING NEWS: At least dozens of people have been seriously injured, a Globe staffer on the scene says.

The marathon was headquartered at the Fairmont Copley Plaza Hotel, which went into lockdown as soon as the two booms were heard. Here is video footage of one of the explosions.

NECN anchor Jackie Bruno was also at the scene and witnessed the explosions.

I saw people's legs blown off. Horrific. Two explosions. Runners were coming in and saw unspeakable horror.

Stay tuned for more information on the ground.

UPDATE: Boston police have now confirmed that ther are casualties. No word on the cause.

Police in Boston confirm 2 explosions at 117th - confirm casualties. But no indication as to who/what might be responsible.

Via Tyler Wakstein/Twitter

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    Photo: summitcheese via Flickr

Utah Avalanche Forecaster Killed

Died checking the snowpack

In a rare on-the-job tragedy, a veteran avalanche forecaster was killed in a snow slide Thursday afternoon. The Utah Department of Transportation employee was checking the stability of a snowpack in Big Cottonwood Canyon in the Wasatch Range. 

Craig Patterson, 34, often went on solo trips to assess safety conditions around the Brighton and Solitude ski resorts. Rising afternoon temperatures can sometimes lead to shifting on steep slopes around Kessler Peak, so Patterson was gauging the changing snow conditions.

It appears that Patterson had been able to deploy an avalanche air bag and was wearing an AvaLung.

His death is unusual considering his preparedness and the rarity of job-related deaths for avalanche forecasters. Only two other American forecasters have died on the job, according to the American Avalanche Association.

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    Photo: Courtesy of Wikimedia Commons

Giant Land Snails Invade Florida

Eating everything, science helpless

Florida is once again under siege from an invasive species. This time, residents are facing a deluge of slime and droppings brought on by the giant African land snail. The mollusks, which were first spotted in the Miami-Dade area in September 2011, can grow as large as a rat and love to eat everything in their path, from gardens to stucco walls. The snails are also known to carry a parasitic lungworm that can cause a form of meningitis in humans. Fortunately, no such cases have been reported so far.

Authorities have had little luck trying to determine the source of the infestation. One possibility is a Miami Santeria group, a West African/Caribbean religion known for using giant land snails in their rituals, but it’s more likely they were simply unintentional hitchhikers in some tourist’s luggage. "If you got a ham sandwich in Jamaica or the Dominican Republic, or an orange, and you didn't eat it all and you bring it back into the States and discard it, at some point, things can emerge from those products," warned Denise Feiber, a spokeswoman for the Florida Department of Agriculture.

Roughly 1,000 snails are being caught each week, 117,000 in total since they first appeared, but it’s unlikely to halt their march of destruction. A single snail can produce over 1,200 eggs in a single fertilization cycle. The last snail infestation, which occurred in 1966, took 10 years to quell and cost the state $1 million.

Experts gathered in Gainesville last week to discuss ways to eradicate the snails. No conclusions were reached, save for bombing the state into dust and “seeing how the snails liked that.”

Read more about Outside's encounter with Florida's other invasive pest, the Burmese python.

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1 Dead, 1 Missing in Avalanches

Slides strike hikers in Washington

A female snowshoer died hours after she was dug out of the snowpack on Saturday and a man remained missing on Monday after avalanches struck the Cascade Mountains in Washington following a heavy snowstorm.

A woman was hiking with her dog behind a group of 12 snowshoers when the avalanche hit. The snowshoers searched for the woman and found her after 45 minutes, buried under roughly six feet of snow. She was hypothermic, but conscious. Rescuers reached the woman after two and a half hours, but it took them roughly six hours to get her off the mountain due to difficult conditions. She was pronounced dead at the scene.

The other Saturday avalanche took place near Granite Mountain, according to the Seattle Times.

Officials knew for sure that a man was missing at the Granite Mountain site, where an avalanche caught three snowshoers, all from South King County, and carried them 1,279 feet at a top speed of 53 mph, said Sgt. Katie Larson of the King County Sheriff’s Office. That level of detail was available because at least one snowshoer was outfitted with GPS.

Two injured men, in their 30s, emerged from the snow, but their companion did not, Larson said.

About 50 rescuers with dog teams searched for the man, who is about 60. But they battled “horrible” conditions, Larson said, and wound up suspending the search sometime around 8 p.m.

Officials have indicated that the search for the missing man may resume Monday morning. More than 100 search and rescue personnel have been involved so far.

The Northwest Avalanche Institute rated avalanche conditions as "high" at Snoqualmie Ski Resort before the predicted storm.

“Because of the cold temperatures, the snow underneath is relatively well frozen and stable,” said Paul Baugher, director of the Northwest Avalanche Institute. “But there’s a poor bond between the new snow coming down and old snow, which is very hard and slippery. That produces soft slabs of very sensitive snow.”

The woman's death is the first reported avalanche fatality of the season in Washington, and the 17th in the United States.

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Wikimedia via China Crisis    

Boy Dies in Crevasse Fall While Snowmobiling

The accident occurred in Alaska's Hoodoo Mountains

The body of a 9-year-old boy who died in a snowmobiling accident in Alaska over the weekend was recovered from a 200-foot-deep crevasse Monday morning, according to state troopers.

Shjon Brown was snowmobiling with his father Saturday in Alaska's Hoodoo Mountains—about five miles north of the Arctic Man Classic—when he disappeared from sight after rounding a slope. Brown's father was watching from a hillside and traced the boy's tracks to a moulin, a hole formed when water carves a hole through a glacier. 

A climber managed to reach the bottom of the crevasse Sunday, but he was unable to locate the boy, finding only his goggles and helmet. After further searching, rescuers found the body buried several feet below his snowmobile.

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