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By ANTHONY CASTELLANO
One of the most powerful typhoons ever recorded began its assault on the Philippines this morning, bringing powerful winds that have knocked out power, downed trees and killed at least three people.
Typhoon Haiyan made landfall at 4:40 a.m. local time near Guiuan, on the Philippine island of Samar about 405 miles southeast of the country's capital, Manila. Coastal areas devastated by the storm have been cut off from communication because of lost power and the government cannot ascertain the number of casualties or much damage has been sustained.
More than 748,000 people have already been evacuated to the 644 evacuation centers across the country. Government officials said more than 3,000 are stranded in ports. Television images from Tacloban city on Leyte Island showed a street under knee-deep floodwater carrying debris that had been blown down by the fierce winds. Tin roofing sheets ripped from buildings were flying above the street.
The U.S. Navy's Joint Typhoon Warning Center said shortly before the typhoon made landfall that its maximum sustained winds were 195 mph, with gusts up to 235 mph. [This is possibly the strongest storm ever recorded.]
Tragedy in California
AP News is reporting more than 1,000 people turned out for a service to remember a 13-year-old boy who was shot and killed by a sheriff's deputy in Northern California.
The Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports (http://bit.ly/18uiUQk) hundreds of mourners wore white Sunday at the request of the mother of Andy Lopez, who was killed last week.
Only about 150 people could fit into the viewing service at a Windsor mortuary, and a long line of people waited to pay their respects.
Authorities say Lopez was carrying an airsoft gun in public that looked like an AK-47 assault rifle when a Sonoma County sheriff's deputy shot him.
The shooting has generated numerous protests and marches in Santa Rosa, with many residents questioning the deputy's decision to fire on the youth. Official reports indicate only one of the two deputies fired at Andy, some witnesses complain that the youth was shot repeatedly after falling from the first hits.
Santa Rosa is about 50 miles northwest of San Francisco in California's wine country.
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Posted by Julie on August 26, 2012 at 15:59