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All 14 workers lost in tunnel flood in China confirmed dead

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BEIJING — The bodies of all 14 workers trapped when a tunnel under construction was flooded last week have been recovered, authorities in southern China said Thursday.

A brief statement on the Zhuhai city government’s social media site gave no further information about the cause of the July 15 disaster or the deaths.

The Shijingshan tunnel is a section of an expressway under construction that passes beneath a reservoir in the Guangdong province city that lies close to Hong Kong and Macao.

The rescue effort involved divers, remote-controlled submarines and other high-tech equipment, while workers on the surface rushed to pump out water from the tunnel. Work was hampered at times by carbon monoxide fumes from machinery being used in the tunnel as part of the operation.

While the cause remains unclear, reports said an abnormal noise was heard and bits of material started falling off one side of the two-tube tunnel. An evacuation was ordered as water rushed in, but the 14 who died were unable to escape in time.

The 14 workers were unable to escape the tunnel despite orders to evacuate.
The 14 workers were unable to escape the tunnel despite orders to evacuate.
AP

The construction project appeared to have had safety problems for some time. In March, two workers died in another part of the tunnel.

Zhuhai is a relatively wealthy coastal city at the mouth of the Pearl River delta, which is now being heavily developed for manufacturing and high-tech industries.

It was one of China’s early special economic zones when the ruling Communist Party started opening up the nation’s economy about 40 years ago.

Demands for breakneck economic growth, weak adherence to safety standards, poor maintenance and corruption among enforcement bodies are blamed for frequent industrial accidents in China.

Those responsible are often handed harsh punishments, but high demand and the desire for profits often trump safety concerns.

Among the worst accidents was a massive 2015 explosion at a chemical warehouse in the port city of Tianjin that killed 173 people, most of them firefighters and police officers. The blast was blamed on illegal construction and unsafe storage of volatile materials.

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New York

Feinberg leaving NYC Transit on Friday after more than a year as interim boss

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Interim NYC Transit president Sarah Feinberg has reached the end of the line.

The West Virginia native told The Post that, effective Friday, she is stepping down from her temporary position running the nation’s largest subway system, seventeen months after she succeeded popular transit boss Andy Byford.

She said the job, which she held as the COVID-19 pandemic ravaged the city’s transit system and left more than a 100 transit workers dead, has cut severely into the time she can spend with her family.

She would, however, consider staying on with the state as MTA chair, a new position that she would likely be considered for if the state Senate decides to split the agency’s top job into two roles.

“Now’s a good time to make my exit — and to either find other ways to serve, if the Senate chooses to act, or to or to move on,” Feinberg said. “At this point I have been doing it for 18 months, and it’s important for me to get back some other pieces of my life.”

Feinberg said running NYC’s subways and buses is “24/7 job,” which limits the time she can spend with her three-year-old daughter.

“You are not serving New Yorkers well unless you are on call 24/7 and you are owning every rush hour, owning every signal delay and paying attention to every project, and thinking constantly about how you can make sure that customers, riders and your workforce are safe,” she said. “That is a hard thing to explain, because I absolutely think women and mothers should do these jobs, but it is a 24/7 job.”

Feinberg was appointed at Interim President of MTA in February 2020.
Feinberg was appointed at Interim President of MTA in February 2020.
Photo by Lev Radin/Anadolu Agency via Getty Images)

The former Facebook staffer and federal rail regulator under President Obama still hopes the state senate changes state law to allow Cuomo to split the MTA Chairman-CEO job in half and appoint her chair and MTA construction boss Janno Lieber CEO.

She said the chair role would allow her “to continue to serve New York… but also be able to live my life in a way that allows me to be the kind of parent and partner that I also need to be.”

The two jobs were briefly split from 2006 to 2009, but were melded back together after state commission called the arrangement “ill-advised” and not “sufficiently independent.”

Feinberg disagrees.

“You should have more hands on the wheel. You should have more talented experienced senior folks running an agency this size,” she said of the leadership “bifurcation” plan, which is opposed by the MTA’s largest union.

“There are very few large companies or organizations that decide there should be one single point of failure, or one single person in charge of an entire multi tens of thousands-person workforce, multi-billion dollar organization.”

Sources in Albany have said senators are unlikely to act — in which case the governor will appoint an interim leader when incumbent MTA head Pat Foye leaves at the end of July.

Feinberg told the Post that she would consider accepting the MTA chair role if the state Senate created the position.
Feinberg told the Post that she would consider accepting the MTA chair role if the state Senate created the position.
Dennis A. Clark

Feinberg hopes her legacy is “leading the agency through the darkest days of COVID,” she said.

The virus officially arrived in New York days after she accepted the gig and has since killed 168 MTA employees. Over 10,000 transit workers missed work in March and April 2020, when the virus peaked in New York City, forcing thousands of train cancellations.

Feinberg initially expected the “temporary” gig to last “three to six months,” she said; COVID-19 instantly changed that.

“I think it was almost immediately that I realized that COVID was going to be extremely serious for New York, and extremely serious for New York City Transit and that this was likely to be a longer term assignment,” she said.

“The greatest challenge was the personal impact — the fact that so many men and women in New York City Transit got sick, the fact that so many of our colleagues passed away.”

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2020 Tokyo Olympics: Team USA gold medalists

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1 of 13

Chase Kalisz (swimming) bested teammate Jay Litherland, who won silver, in the 400m Individual Medley for Team USA’s first gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

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2 of 13

Vincent Hancock, a veteran in the Men’s Skeet event, added his third gold medal to his collection when he scored 59 points in the final — an Olympic record.

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3 of 13

Lee Kiefer, a four-time NCAA fencing champion, defeated Inna Deriglazova of the Russian Olympic Committee for her first gold medal in the Individual Women’s Foil event.

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4 of 13

Katie Ledecky (swimming) snatched her first gold medal of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics when she became the first person to win the 1500m Freestyle in the event’s debut at the summer games.

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5 of 13

Will Shaner (shooting) set a pair of milestones when he claimed his gold medal in the 10m Air Rifle event. Shaner scored 251.6 in his debut, setting an Olympic record.

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The United States women’s 3×3 basketball team consisting of Stefanie Dolson, Allisha Gray, Kelsey Plum and Jackie Young defeated the Russian Olympic Committee 18-15 for the Gold Medal at the 2020 Olympic Games in Tokyo.

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17-year-old Lydia Jacoby (swimming) sealed one of the most surprising upsets at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, winning her first gold medal in the 100m Breaststroke event with a time of 1:04:94.

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Anastasija Zolotic (taekwondo) defeated Tatiana Minina to claim her first gold medal at 18 years old in the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

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The team of Caeleb Dressel, Blake Pieroni, Bowen Becker, Zach Apple (swimming) won gold in the 100m Freestyle Relay at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

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Carissa Moore (surfing) dominated with a score of 14.93 in the gold medal match of the Women’s Surfing Shortboard event at the Tokyo Olympics.

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11 of 13

Amber English (shooting) stood atop of the podium in the women’s skeet final at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics, setting an Olympic record of 56 points — a one-point difference over Italy’s Diana Bacosi.

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12 of 13

With one gold medal under his belt, Caeleb Dressel (swimming) again struck gold at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics in the 100m Freestyle event.

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13 of 13

Bobby Finke (swimming) earned his gold medal at the 2020 Tokyo Olympics when he surged from fourth place into first place with under 50m left in the 800m race.

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8.2 magnitude earthquake hits Alaska, prompting tsunami warnings

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A strong and shallow earthquake of magnitude 8.2 struck the Alaskan peninsula late on Wednesday, prompting tsunami warnings in the US state and heightened surveillance across the pacific.

There were no immediate reports of loss of property or life. Tsunami warning sirens were sounded close to a Walmart store in Kodiak, Alaska, a video filmed by a local resident and obtained by Reuters showed.

The US National Tsunami Warning Center (NTWC) issued alerts for southern parts of Alaska, the volcanic peninsula itself, and Pacific coastal areas from Hinchinbrook entrance to Unimak pass.

Alaska Governor Mike Dunleavy tweeted that the state’s emergency operation center had been activated and authorities were contacting communities in the tsunami warning areas.

The US Geological Survey (USGS) said the quake, which struck at 10:15 p.m. local time, was at a depth of 35 km.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Center (PTWC) said it had canceled warnings of possible tsunami threats issued to Hawaii and the US Pacific territory of Guam.

The NTWC said it was evaluating the level of tsunami danger for other US and Canadian Pacific coastal areas.

An aerial view of the United States Geological Survey’s ShakeMap displays the epicenter and intensity levels of the earthquake along the Aleutian Trench on July 28, 2021.
An aerial view of the United States Geological Survey’s ShakeMap displays the epicenter and intensity levels of the earthquake along the Aleutian Trench on July 28, 2021.
United States Geological Survey

Japan’s Meteorological Agency was investigating whether there was a possibility of a tsunami hitting Japan, public broadcaster NHK said. There were no tsunami alerts on Japan’s Meteorological Agency website.

Authorities in New Zealand also said they were assessing if there was any danger to coastal regions.

The tremor struck about 91 km east-southeast of Perryville in Alaska. It was about 800 km (500 miles) from Anchorage, Alaska’s biggest city. The National Weather Service tweeted that there was no tsunami threat to Anchorage.

The USGS added that the quake was followed by eight aftershocks in the region, with two above magnitude 6.0

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