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Would The World Be A Better Place If There Were Rules Against Cigarettes And Zippo Lighters? Jan 18

Submitted by: Bradlley Mckoy

We all know smoking is a bad habit. Even smokers know that smoking is a bad habit. They are also aware of the harmful effects of cigarettes not just to themselves but to the people around them. However, most smokers are quite impervious to the feelings of others. You can see them lighting up their cigarettes with their Zippo lighters anywhere that would let them with utter disregard to the people around them. Indeed, there should be some sort of smokers etiquette to be followed. After all, everyone s health and well-being is at stake.

Is Smoke-free Really Free From Smoke?

For the past few years, anti-smoking campaigns have been progressive at least, in some but not all public places. Most cities all over the world have since banned smoking in public transportation, indoor facilities like malls, restaurants and museums, and libraries. However, smokers are still lighting up with their Zippo lighters in parks, street cafes, and pubs because these are places frequented by smokers. What most laws failed to consider is the fact that non-smokers also frequent these places, if only to breathe fresh air. That s made impossible by the number of Zippo lighters lighting up in every direction.

Indeed, anti-smoking propaganda has to be strengthened to force smokers to conform to good etiquette and not involve other people in their unsavory habit. Outdoor areas should be declared smoke-free. There should be proper partitions between smoking and non-smoking sections in restaurants to avoid smoke from blowing over to the other side. There should be cafes, pubs, and rooms dedicated to smokers where they and their Zippo lighters can congregate and kill each other, and leave the healthy population out of it.

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In Good Company

Of course, being in the company of a smoker can never be avoided, especially if they are a family member, friend, or co-worker. Short of putting them into quarantine, smokers should follow certain decorum when in the presence of a non-smoker.

For example, smoking paraphernalia like cigarettes, Zippo lighters, and cigarette cases should be kept out of sight while the smoker and the non-smoker are engaged in a meal. A smoker should not be allowed to light up within 6 feet of a non-smoker. A smoker should have the decency to leave the room and head to the nearest smoke-friendly zone before lighting up with Zippo lighters. This way, the smoker only jeopardizes himself and not the lives of the people around him.

Non-smokers also have to do their parts. After all, smokers won t be privy to your feelings or will at least continue to ignore it until you do something about it. Remember that your silence is encouragement. Smokers will continue to smoke and be unmindful of your feelings if you don t speak up. Put your foot down once and for all and you ll find that most smokers are decent enough to put away their cigarettes and Zippo lighters for you, at least, until you re no longer in the immediate vicinity. And that should be good enough. After all, bad habits die hard.

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Canada’s Scarborough-Agincourt (Ward 39) city council candidates speak
Jan 18
This exclusive interview features first-hand journalism by a Wikinews reporter. See the collaboration page for more details.

Friday, November 3, 2006

On November 13, Torontonians will be heading to the polls to vote for their ward’s councillor and for mayor. Among Toronto’s ridings is Scarborough-Agincourt (Ward 39). Two candidates responded to Wikinews’ requests for an interview. This ward’s candidates include Wayne Cook, Mike Del Grande (incumbent), Samuel Kung, Lushan Lu, Sunshine Smith, and John Wong.

For more information on the election, read Toronto municipal election, 2006.

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Interview: PRS, the UK’s music royalty collection society
Jan 17

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

PRS for Music is the UK’s music royalty collection society tasked with working on behalf of copyright holders, specifically authors and music publishers. Founded in 1914, the PRS is a non-profit organisation with 350,000 UK businesses holding PRS licenses. The society works in conjunction with PPL which collects fees on behalf of the copyright holders of the actual recording. So, if a cover version of a song is played on UK radio, PRS collect a fee on behalf of the original writer and publisher, whilst PPL collect a fee on behalf of the record company of the cover. In a recent Wikinews interview, Paul Campbell, founder of Amazing Radio, an unsigned UK radio station, lambasted PRS for their “barmy standard contract” and their outdated equipment. That interview can be found here.

The music industry is changing and the way we use music is continually changing

Wikinews reporter Tristan Thomas interviews PRS, following up on Campbell and others’ criticism as well as finding out about future plans.

((Wikinews)) Firstly, thank you for the time in doing this interview.

((WN)) Last year, you were involved in a high profile dispute with YouTube. Can you briefly explain to our audience what that was all about and the final outcome of it?

((PRS)) PRS for Music was the first collecting society in the world to license the YouTube service, meaning if music videos were watched online then our members – who created them – would receive a small royalty payment. When we went to renew the licence that YouTube held we couldn’t agree as to how much should be paid and exactly what should be covered within it. We believed that music had become a much larger part of the YouTube service and that YouTube/Google should reflect the increased use of our members’ creative talent in the amount they paid.

The great thing is that we kept talking to YouTube throughout the dispute and managed to reach an agreement in September which meant that the videos could be accessed again by UK YouTube users and that our 65,000 songwriter, composer and music publisher members would be paid.

((WN)) How many artists do you represent and how much did you collect during 2009 for them?

((PRS)) We represent 65,000 songwriters, composers and music publishers. We haven’t released our 2009 figures yet but in 2008 we collected over £600m for them. The main sources of revenue come from recorded media (CDs, DVDs etc), international use, public performance use and use in television, radio and online.

((WN)) Paul Campbell in a recent interview with us said the following: “PRS has a barmy standard contract for using their members’ music online. It requires us to pay them a fixed percentage of ALL revenue from that website – whether or not the revenue is derived from their members’ work. So if we had 100,000 songs from non-PRS artists on amazingtunes.com, and one song from a PRS artist, we’d have to pay them a percentage of the revenue from ALL 100,000 songs. I.e., we’d have to take money out of the pockets out of non-PRS artists to pay to PRS. That would be immoral.” How do you respond to that?

((PRS)) Anyone using music in a commercial way – such as a radio station – is required to obtain the permission of those that created the music. This could be numerous writers, publishers and a record label for each song, possibly in different countries around the world. By obtaining a PRS for Music and PPL licence in the UK you are ensuring you have those permissions for over 10million musical works. Obviously much of the music used on radio comes from non-UK writers who may not be members of PRS for Music. Radio and television stations give us almost 100% accurate reports of their music use through their own playlists; this data then enables organisations such as ours to work out who should be paid and how much. PRS for Music has 144 agreements in place with similar societies around the world, resulting in us representing almost 2 million writers worldwide. If French, American, Spanish, Australian or any other writer’s music is used we will pay the respective societies so they can pay their members.

HAVE YOUR SAY
Is PRS’ standard contract “barmy” as Paul Campbell asserts?
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Similarly a writer of musician may be ‘unsigned’ by that doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t earn from their music when it is used by others. Many bands, writers and performers are currently unsigned but by being members of PRS for Music they ensure that they can begin earning vital royalties that allow them to continue with their musical career.

((WN)) How does the PRS ensure that artists outside the UK are properly compensated when their music is used within the UK, such as Thai or Chinese restaurants paying their PRS dues and exclusively using music which is from outside Europe?

((PRS)) As mentioned before PRS for Music has agreements in place in over 90 countries around the world to ensure that when music is used the right creators are rewarded. The system – built up over the last century – works both ways and when UK music is used internationally, PRS for Music receives royalties from foreign societies so we can pay our members. In 2008 £139.8m was collected from UK music use abroad, with the UK being one of only a few net exporters of music in the world.

((WN)) There have been a few cases in which PRS have been forced to apologise, exemplified by the threat of prosecution and a fine towards “singing granny” Sandra Burt, a shelf-stacker who sung to herself whilst stacking shelves. How has PRS moved forward from these incidents in order to ensure they do not happen again?

((PRS)) If we have made mistakes we will of course put our hands up and say so. For example when we were approached about the Sandra Burt case – by a journalist incidentally and not Sandra – we did give out slightly incorrect advice, although the questions were a little ambiguous. Once we realised our mistake we contacted Sandra to explain that she wouldn’t need a licence to sing to her customers and offered our sincere apologies. As an organisation we are very quick to admit where we get things wrong and ensure they are put right. We’re proud of our record with our customers and currently have 350,000 businesses choosing to use music in the UK.

Once we realised our mistake we contacted Sandra

To put the complaints in context we have only have 1 for approximately every 5,000 customer contacts we make. This is an exceptionally low ratio and there are many firms who would be envious of a record like this. During 2009 our complaints fell by 50% and we appointed an independent ombudsmen who could handle any complaints if they were not resolved internally. As of January 2010 no complaints have needed to be passed on to the ombudsmen.

((WN)) How does the PRS work with musicians who are not signed to major labels, may make music available for download via their own websites or MySpace, and do not have the financial resources to protect their copyright?

((PRS)) Many of the PRS for Music membership is not signed to a major record label and we represent creators from all genres of music in the UK and abroad. By joining PRS for Music, which only costs £10 deferred to your first royalty payment, you ensure you can begin earning royalties whenever your music is played, performed or reproduced. We have worked hard to license such sites as YouTube, MySpace, Spotify and Sky Songs to name a selection to ensure our members can be rewarded when their work is used.

Our membership team also work hard to support our creators holding showcase events, offering advice of how to get their music used as well as legal and financial advice.

((WN)) Finally, what future plans do you have as an organisation in order to further protect and enhance your members work as new technologies emerge over the next few years?

((PRS)) PRS for Music will continue to be at the forefront of licensing new digital and online services to ensure creators are paid. We aim to get the balance right to ensure new products and music services can launch and develop, but that also they pay for the music they use.

The music industry is changing and the way we use music is continually changing (it always has) but we’ll still be at the forefront enabling people to use music whenever they want, and rewarding those that have created that music.

((WN)) Thank you for taking the time out for this interview. Good luck for 2010.

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Adam Air hits severe financial problems; may be shut down in three weeks
Jan 17

Monday, March 17, 2008

Indonesian budget airline Adam Air has been given a three-week ultimatum by the authorities to prove its economic stability or its license will be revoked, said Transportation Minister Jusman Djamal. This is because major financial difficulties have become apparent today, with two major shareholders pulling out of the company.

PT Global Transport Service (GTS) and Bright Star Perkasa, who between them own a 50% stake in the company, have decided to sell back all their shares to their original owners, who control the other 50%. These are the family of founder Adam Suherman and Sandra Ang.

The companies invested in the airline last year, when the company was struggling after the New Year’s Day disappearance of Adam Air Flight 574 with 102 on board. The Boeing 737 (B737) was ultimately determined to have crashed into the sea near Sulawesi, and all on board are presumed dead. Shortly afterwards, Adam Air Flight 172, another B737, snapped in half during a hard landing, but held together preventing fatalities. These were not the first serious accidents for the company, as in February 2006 Flight 782 became lost for several hours after navigation systems failed and the plane entered a radar blackspot, forcing a subsequent emergency landing many miles from the intended route. The given reasons for the withdrawal are a lack of improvement in safety and financial irregularities.

The company has now also defaulted on debt payments to aircraft lease firms, resulting in 12 of their 22 planes being seized, and has cut the number of routes served from 52 to 12. The remaining ten planes are also in default and at risk of seizure. Adam Air owes leasing companies US$14 million compared to free capital of $4.8 million of free capital. They have agreed to buy back shares gradually for $11 million (100 billion rupiah), $6 million less than the investment firms paid for them. The cost difference will be borne by Harry Tanoesoedibyo’s family, the founder of PT Bhakti Investama, of which GTS is a wholly owned subsidiary. The companies have also lost 157 billion rupiah worth of investment in the company since the April 2007 deal. 9,325 Rupiah are currently worth US$1.

GTS director Gustiono Kustianto said that “Since we joined, our priority has been safety” but that Adam Air’s management had been unresponsive to pressure from the new investors to improve its poor record. Last weeek another company B737 shot off the runway during landing, damaging the plane and injuring five.

Lawyer Marx Andryan of Hotman Paris Hutapea, representing the investment firms, said they have documents proving the company has not adequatly seen to pilot recruitment, maintenance and insurance.

Suherman said “We have defaulted and the investors have done nothing about it. We’ll continue to operate as long as we have planes,” adding that there are no current plans to declare bankruptcy.

“Out of 22 planes, now we only have 10 because 12 of them have been declared in default. The other 10 have been declared in default as well, but I’m still trying to work out a way to restructure the payments,” he told Reuters. He went on to say that a cash injection is required, and that “There is a possibility starting on March 21 Adam Air will temporarily cease operations until there is a decision from the shareholders regarding the insurance premium.”

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Salarpuria Sattva Navaratna Residency Best And Perfect For You} Jan 12

Submitted by: Annya Kumar

Leading designers in addition to a private title in South India, the Salarpuria Sattva Group is landing in Coimbatore in place of Salarpuria Sattva Navaratna Residency- a widespread level of comfort residential charge right in the centre of the conurbation at the concerning to Lakshmi Mills by means of Airtel office. A most important for Coimbatore municipality- up-to-the-minute Club as atmosphere located in the high-quality Avinashi Main Road on the point of Lakshmi Mills by means of Airtel office, its breadths in excess of 6 acres by signifies of 8 Towers along with has a centrally located unequalled Clubhouse. Its has a majestic tallness by denotes of towers with the intention of come out to 14 floors every. The architectural method is contemporary in addition to the houses have tremendously well-systematized floor plans. Each as well as every unit is cautiously designed building certain a very determined layout over and above exploited areas.

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It is planned to be very stylish self- surround area which will have aesthetically planned landscapes, gardens over and above renewal sections. Existence here will on no account be uninteresting for all epoch groups seeing that there is a broad alternative of open-air in company with indoor exploits that constructs life vibrant over and above snug for all age groups. Greater engineering, Security, Green measures, Garbage management, Rainwater harvesting are a modest of the input explanation of a Navratna Residency Coimbatore by Salarpuria Sattva. Predictable as the estate builds the third most important regions of Tamil Nadu. In spite of its importance as an occupied of go engineering metropolis, it is solitary in the focus of the contamination free cities in India. The chief industries existing their encompass textile machinery, automobile spares, textiles, electronics, steel, motors and aluminium foundries. Carrying as of Chennai, Salem, Bangalore, Erode and so forth cannot but obtained you cut slantwise this centre of fetching growth to reach Coimbatore. Airport being easy to get to beneath a kilometer, Avanashi road boxes a number of Kovai Medical Centre together with Aurobindo Eye Hospital, Coimbatore Medical College, PSG, Codassia Exhibition grounds, the planned Tidel Park for IT, summit course group hotels in addition other notorious housing by way of commercial structures the extent of its make bigger. Inside a radius of 5 KMs is away from our site, can be founded Railway Station, Irritated Cut Road, VOC Park, Gandhipuram, Race Course Road together with Lakshmi Mills Junction. Hotel Nilgiris added to Residency are round the corner too.

While the documented landed home players on or after exterior Tamil Nadu examination the waters chief in Chennai proceeding to entering Coimbatore, the Bangalore carried Salarpuria Sattva Group is making a course of action into Coimbatore previous to entering Chennai marketplace. The existing position of the landed belongings market in the metropolis where it is under a few pressures on account of profitable slow has not defer the troupe as it is helpful of the souk bouncing back since Coimbatore boasts of hordes of positive character that sketch populace to it. The hypothetical State government was proffering push to the citys development which was at the split second unfolding. For more info visit http://www.salarpuriasattvagroup.com/Navratna-Residency-Avinashi-Road-Coimbatore/

About the Author: The Top real estate builder Salarpuria Sattva Group is coming with their new residential project Salarpuria Sattva Navratna Residency located at Avinashi Road, Coimbatore. The project offers 1, 2 and 3 BHK green living apartments. For more info visit

salarpuriasattvagroup.com/Navratna-Residency-Avinashi-Road-Coimbatore/

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Major snowstorm sweeps across Eastern US
Jan 12

Sunday, February 7, 2010

A major winter storm, which has been nicknamed by some as “Snowmageddon“, has pummeled parts of the U.S. Middle Atlantic region, dumping up to 19 inches (50 centimeters) of snow in some parts of the Washington area.

The National Weather Service is predicting as much as 24 to 30 inches (60 to 75 cm) of snow for the Washington, D.C. region by late Saturday. The storm brought high winds and low visibility, with winds gusting at 56 miles per hour (93 kilometers per hour) along the coast.

Life in the nation’s capital ground to a halt with the federal government and most businesses closing early on Friday and residents warned to stay off the snow-clogged roads. Hundreds of thousands of homes were without power as the wet snow weighed heavily on trees and power lines. Power lines in some areas have been brought down by the heavy snow.

The Weather Service issued blizzard and winter storm warnings for states reaching from Virginia and West Virginia up to Maryland, Pennsylvania, Delaware, and New Jersey.

Forecasters say this could be the largest recorded snowfall in Washington, rivaling a storm, known as the Knickerbocker Storm, that hit the city nearly 90 years ago, in January 1922. The largest amount of snowfall recorded so far has been in Elkridge, Maryland, reporting 32 inches (81 cm). The 1922 storm was named the Knickerbocker Storm for a theater where 98 people were killed when the building’s roof collapsed due to heavy snow. Snowfall in that storm measured 28 inches (71 cm).

Airlines and airports across the region have canceled flights and train service has been disrupted. Ronald Reagan Washington National Airport suspended flight operations for the day while nearby Washington Dulles International Airport reported only a few international flights would be departing. Baltimore/Washington International Thurgood Marshall Airport reported most flights were canceled. Flights at Philadelphia International Airport are also canceled.

Amtrak announced that it was canceling a number of trains between Washington and New York City, along with service from Washington to cities in the south. The Washington Metropolitan Area Transit Authority, known as the Metro locally, has suspended bus service and above ground train service. Underground subway service is running at 30 minute intervals.

As the storm approached, residents emptied supermarket shelves, stocking up on food and other supplies, especially due to Super Bowl XLIV which will be held on Sunday. Local area sports teams in Washington, D.C. will still play games as scheduled. People are urged to take the Metro to see the games and not use the roads. Impromptu snowball fights have also broken with some people going as far as to organize them over Facebook and Twitter.

The winter weather has already been blamed for hundreds of road accidents. So far two fatalities have been reported, a father and son who were rendering aid to a stranded motorist on Interstate 81 in Virginia, when an approaching tractor-trailer jackknifed and killed the pair.

This is the second major snowstorm to hit the region in less than two months.

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Category:Featured article
Jan 12
Shortcut:WN:FA

Featured articles are selected by the community to represent the best of Wikinews. See the Featured Article Candidates page for nominations and discussions of candidate articles for this page. Or, subscribe to the RSS feed!

[edit]

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French police arrest two women wearing veils after burqa ban goes into effect
Jan 12

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

One day after France began enforcing a ban on the public wearing Islamic veils that cover the face, either a niq?b or a burqa, French police briefly detained two veiled women. The police later claimed that the women were arrested for taking part in an unauthorized protest, not because they were wearing veils.

The new law is hotly debated. The women were arrested while outside the famed Notre Dame Cathedral in Paris, and may now face fines of up to $217 (150 euros), community service and/or a citizenship course under the law.

While the ban covers the burqa and the niq?b, it does not include the hijab or the chador. The hijab is a veil that leaves the face visible while covering the hair and neck, and the chador covers only the body.

The French Republic lives in a bare-headed fashion…

The law has stirred much debate, both in France and around the globe. Those who oppose the new law say it limits freedom of speech and freedom of religion, while supporters claim that women are degraded by wearing veils and the law is intended to empower those women, as well as increase public security.

The French government, in defense of the ban, said that it was necessary because wearing veils falls short of the living standards in France and and makes women be of an lower status in a country where everybody is considered equal.

French Prime Minister Francois Fillon has said that the ban is consistent with the national values of France. “The French Republic lives in a bare-headed fashion,” he said in a statement published by a government newspaper.

The French government previously made efforts to accommodate Muslims in the country, including establishing a council dealing with the presence of Islam; however, according to Amer Sahar, a professor who studies the topic, some Muslims in the country say that they feel as though they are under assault by the government. She said that some are “resentful of the fact that they are not allowed to be both Muslim and French.”

The French government is also concerned with women and children who are forced to veil themselves. It has said that such an action is “a new form of enslavement that the republic cannot accept on its soil.” There is a fine of 30,000 euros (about $43,300) and a year in prison for forcing an adult to wear the niq?b or burqa. The fine is doubled for forcing a minor to wear the veils.

Activist Rachid Nekkaz auctioned one of his homes to provide money to pay the fine for any woman arrested under the law. “I would like to send a clear message to President Nicolas Sarkozy that we can do what we want. We have rules. We have a constitution and everyone has to respect it,” he said.

According to the French Constitutional Council, the law “conforms to the Constitution” because it does not limit the freedom of religion or excessively punish people for exercising that right in a place of worship.

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Guidelines To Search For Oyo Room In Rajahmundry For Tourist} Jan 12

Guidelines To Search For Oyo Room In Rajahmundry For Tourist

by

abhay kumar

Rajahmundry is famous city in India, and it is located on the bank of River Godavari in East district of the state. In fact, this place is famous for Cultural Capital of AP and the property is merely 16.6 Km from Airport of Rajahmundry and the Rajahmundry Railway station from 600 m distance as well as 1.2 km from the Bus stop of Kotipalli. Raja Hospital far from 1 km and the Life Emergency Hospital 1.1km near it in case of any emergency needs. The city is the mandal headquarters to, Rajahmundry (urban), and Rajahmundry (rural) mandals. In addition, it is also the headquarters division of Rajahmundry revenue as well as Municipal Corporation in districts next to Kakinada. If you wish to visit this city then there are several kinds of hotels available for you. Apart from those hotels, Oyo room in rajahmundry is famous and many people wish to stay here. The official websites available in online for in order to gain huge information regarding this hotel services, simply visit the online portal. It aids you to hotel including along with images, attractive features, services and prices that provided and all this assist the consumers in making a judicious selection of the place to stay.

Hotel facilities:

The super worth hotels provided with services such as one can able to enjoy the complimentary breakfast as well as high speed of internet facilities during their stay on hotel. The Oyo room in rajahmundry hotel provides attractive services like fire safety, first aid, dry cleaning and laundry services, power backups at high reliable services. You can park ample parking space is allocated for your vehicles and 24 hours front desk, clock security as well as credit card payment and ticket assistance available. Wake up facilities will be convenience for you, in fact international guests stayed on this hotels.

Room amenities:

Oyo Rooms provide the affordable price for financial plan stay in the city and the rooms are spacious and luxurious which are well furnished with wonderful interiors designs. Includes Flat screen LCD TV for you where you able to watch your favorite movie shows effectively. In addition, hotels supply air conditioners, worktable, Fresh linen, an intercom and closet to keep your property as well as hot water facilities also offered with flattering toiletries in each room.

Instructions of booking hotel room

Many online portal services emphasize stylish as well as luxurious room services in Rajahmundry. For better result, simply access the valid Oyo room in rajahmundry online portal services for efficient services. They offers all the fundamental needs that required by the tourist in order to satisfy their needs. For tourist visitor those who interest to spend time in Rajahmundry this will the right destination for them. Apart from those services, the customer services provided by the hotels are high quality so that if you decide to visit then starts seeking for the hotels in online. In fact, many online providers are ready to offer services for you regarding selecting the best and famous hotel at reasonable price.

Get Oyo Room In Rajahmundry. Will get great discounts. You can get more information by clicking the link Oyo Room In Rajahmundry

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}

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U.S. prepares for arrival of Hurricane Sandy
Jan 11

Monday, October 29, 2012

The United States is preparing for the arrival of Hurricane Sandy. The hurricane, which is expected to hit late Sunday into Monday, could affect up to sixty million people. The Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, announced that all subway, bus and train services in New York City would be suspended from 19:00 EST on Sunday evening.

The hurricane has already caused damage and fatalities in several Caribbean countries this week. Meteorologists are concerned that it will turn into a “Frankenstorm” as it amalgamates with a winter storm in the run up to Halloween. It has now been downgraded to a post-tropical storm by the National Hurricane Center. It has sustained winds of 85 mph. Authorities warned that a full moon could trigger high tides with storm surges of up to 3 metres which would cause sea water to surge through Lower Manhattan.

Country Damage caused
Haiti At least 44 people killed and homes flooded
Cuba Eleven people killed and second city left without power
Dominican Republic Two people killed and 8,755 people evacuated
Jamaica One person killed and schools, airports closed
Bahamas Power cuts and flooding

It is also expected to cause serious flooding in several areas on the Mid-Atlantic coast, including Long Island Sound and New York Harbour.

New York mayor Michael Bloomberg urged people to take action now to keep themselves safe. “I don’t want anybody to go to bed tonight thinking that they can spend the day worrying about the night after,” Mr Bloomberg said. “If you don’t evacuate, you are not only endangering your life, you are also endangering the lives of the first responders who are going in to rescue you,” he said.

It is expected that the hurricane will affect flights. Air France announced that it will cancel all flights to New York and Washington today. British Airways has cancelled all flights to and from the east coast of the U.S. today.

The Governor of New York, Andrew Cuomo, has announced that several bridges are to close from 19:00 EDT — George Washington, Verrazano-Narrows, Throgs Neck, Whitestone, Henry Hudson, Cross Bay Veterans, and from 16:00 EDT the Tappan Zee. He also said the worst of the storm has not yet reached the city.

The New York Stock Exchange trading floor is closed today and is to remain closed tomorrow but electronic transactions are still able to take place. Spokesman Rich Adamonis told Reuters “We continue to monitor the situation and to communicate with government officials, regulators, and markets participants,”. The United Nations headquarters in New York have also been shut down. Several states have announced states of emergency- Maryland, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia, Washington DC and also a coastal county in North Carolina.

Public schools are to remain closed tomorrow in New York, Washington and Philadelphia. The Washington metro is also to be closed tomorrow because of the hurricane.

The state of Delaware has announced a mandatory evacuation order for 50,000 people from coastal areas and New Jersey Governor Chris Christie urged people not to take risks. “We have to be prepared for the worst here. I can be as cynical as any of you but when the storm comes, if it’s as bad as they’re predicting it will be, you’re gonna wish you weren’t as cynical as you might otherwise have been.” he said.

CNN have reported that about 1.5 million people are now being affected by power cuts.

The hurricane has also affected the election campaigning plans of the two main presidential candidates Mitt Romney and Barack Obama. Romney announced that he had cancelled a planned campaign rally yesterday evening in Virginia Beach and Vice-President Joe Biden cancelled a visit there on Saturday.

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