A ferry carrying as many as 350 passengers capsized and sank off Papua New Guinea on Thursday, killing at least 100 people. The MV Rabaul Queen capsized in high seas roughly 50 miles off the island's eastern coast. Nearby ships and rescue helicopters have saved 230 of the vessel's passengers. Emergency officials are working to determine how many passengers may have been aboard when the ship sank. Australian Prime Minister Julia Gillard warned that the death toll would be significant. "It is li... Read More
A group of 145 waterskiers broke a world record on Friday when they skied together behind a boat off the coast of Tasmania. The previous record of 114 was set in the same location two years ago. The skiers ranged from 12 to 60 years old and, under Guinness rules, had to stay upright for one nautical mile for the record to count. The project required five miles of ropes, and a 308-foot boom was attached to a catamaran to keep the ropes from becoming tangled. One participant estimated that the e... Read More
A coalition of environmentalists and outdoor enthusiasts filed suit in federal court on Wednesday to block the artist Christo from draping "silvery translucent" fabric over a 42-mile stretch of the Arkansas river. The non-profit Rags Over the Arkansas River (ROAR) filed suit against the Bureau of Land Management, arguing that the agency environmental impact report did not consider increased traffic along Highway 50 or disturbances to the local bighorn sheep population. The construction period,... Read More
A coalition of governments, drug companies, and charities on Monday pledged to invest a record $785 million to developing treatments for 10 tropical diseases. The Uniting to Combat Neglected Tropical Diseases initiative aims to cure the illnesses, which include sleeping sickness, Chagas disease, and leprosy, within the next decade. The United Sates, United Kingdom, and the United Arab Emirates, as well as the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, have contributed. James Kazura, president of the A... Read More
Canadian explorer Don Starkell, who gained fame in the 1980s for paddling more than 12,000 miles from Manitoba to the mouth of the Amazon River, died Monday in Winnipeg. Starkell's adventures also included a 3,000-mile journey by canoe across the Arctic. He later recounted both trips in print, and his Amazon journey was the subject of the 2009 documentary Paddle to the Amazon. Starkell, 79, had battled cancer.
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