The U.S. government’s auto safety regulator on Friday said it opened an investigation into around 115,000 Tesla vehicles over a front suspension safety issue. Under scrutiny arethe 2015-2017 Model S and 2016-2017 Model X vehicles. The National Highway Traffic Safety Administration - or NHTSA - said it received 43 complaints alleging failure of the left or right front suspension fore links. The agency said three of the complaints were at highway speeds reported within the last three months. Tesla did not immediately respond to a request for comment. According to the NHTSA, Tesla in February of 2017 issued a service bulletin that said some vehicles have QUOTE: "front fore links that may not meet Tesla strength specifications.” But in a blog post in June 2016, the electric car maker denied any safety defect in Model X or Model S suspensions. It DID mention however that the NHTSA had asked the company to informally provide it with information about the suspensions. On Nov. 20, a class-action lawsuit was filed against Tesla in California over suspension issues - claiming Model S and X vehicles have defects that can result in components prematurely failing.
A Utah woman used social media to raise money for an elderly veteran who took a delivery job to help pay for repairs to his home.Jen Cantwell Weiss from Ogden shared footage on November 15 showing a delivery driver struggling to get up the steps of her home as he dropped off groceries. “I didn’t watch this video til after he was already gone, or else I would have gone out to help him,” she wrote on Facebook. A relative of the man saw the footage and put him in touch with Weiss.Weiss discovered the man, named Larry, is a veteran who suffered a stroke earlier in 2020 and had to relearn how to walk. Weiss shared his story on Facebook, saying he took the delivery job to pay for repairs to his roof, and appealed for people to help him with the costs.Weiss posted his Venmo information and the donations started to roll in, she said. “I have been in touch with him and he is overwhelmed with gratitude,” she wrote on Facebook. “He did NOT ask for any help, but I love that people are touched by his story and want to help lighten his load a bit.”Larry told local media that the donations covered his roof repairs and he no longer had to do deliveries.Weiss shared an update on Facebook, saying Larry and his wife “requested that rather than continuing to donate to him, you donate to Toys for Tots or your local food bank. He says he has received more than enough and feels there are so many others out there who need the help more than he does.”“He expresses his heartfelt gratitude for everything people have sent,” Weiss wrote. Credit: Jen Cantwell Weiss via Storyful
A little boy was seen holding flowers outside the cemetery in Bella Vista, Argentina, where legendary soccer player Diego Maradona was buried on November 26.Earlier in the day, mourners swarmed the hearse transporting Maradona’s coffin during a funeral procession on the streets of Buenos Aires near the nation’s presidential palace, known as the Casa Rosada.Videos filmed by Instagram user @soldiez_ show riot police in the street outside Jardin Bella Vista, the cemetery where Maradona was to be buried, as a crowd gathered to celebrate the star’s life and pay their respects.Maradona died on November 25, aged 60, from cardiac arrest in his home in the Buenos Aires suburb of Tigre. Credit: @soldiez_ via Storyful
Optimism around an economic rebound next year lifted Wall Street Friday, sending the Nasdaq to a record closing high. Tech and healthcare stocks led the rally as the market action rotated back to growth stocks and away from economically-sensitive cyclical and value stocks. The Nasdaq closed up nearly 1%. The S&P 500 added a quarter percent, and the Dow inched a tenth percent higher. All three indexes made solid gains on the week. Spartan Capital Securities chief market economist Peter Cardillo said investors shouldn’t read too much into Friday’s holiday-shortened trading session: “It’s really not that constructive in at the sense that it’s an abbreviated session. Volume is light. But if we close where we are now, it’s a good sign that come Monday, the market will probably continue to rally.” On this Black Friday, masked shoppers turned up in smaller numbers at major U.S. retailers as early online deals and coronavirus concerns dulled enthusiasm for trips to the mall. Shares of big box retailers such as Walmart and Target surrendered their earlier gains. Investors were less kind to traditional department store operators Macy’s, JC Penney and Nordstrom. But online retailers Amazon, eBay and Etsy rose. Shares of Walt Disney dipped after the media and entertainment giant said it would lay off about 32,000 workers.
A couple restoring a house in Montgomery County, New York, say they were surprised to find bottles of prohibition-era booze hidden behind their walls.Nick Drummond and his partner, Patrick Bakker, said they purchased the house in Ames as a fixer-upper for around $183,000 in 2019.Writing on Instagram, Drummond said the house once belonged to a man named Adolph Humpfner, who died in 1932, leaving behind the booze and many other assets. Drummond said they were told that Humpfner was a “childless German baron” who turned to bootlegging in the 1920s, when alcohol was banned from manufacture, transportation and sale.This clip shows panels of wood being pulled off the outside of the house, revealing the bottles behind it.The booze was concealed using straw wrapped around the bottles, the couple said. In total, 66 bottles of alcohol were discovered, with 13 full, Drummond said.“To everyone asking if we have tried it, we haven’t! But we will!” Drummond wrote. Credit: Nick Drummond via Storyful
A large school of stingrays was spotted near Gulf Shores, Alabama, video filmed in September and shared on Tuesday, November 24, shows.Drone pilot Travis Middleton captured footage of cownose rays swimming amongst several sharks near a pier that recently experienced weather damage.Speaking to Storyful, Middleton said he was flying his drone along the Gulf Coast to record the aftermath of the Hurricane Sally when he saw the rays, swimming near the Gulf State Park Pier on September 30.“I had heard about the migration in the past and always wanted to capture it but had no idea it would be happening when I was shooting that day,” he said.He added, “For the first time flying my drone I felt a little nervous just because it was such an overwhelming thing to see. It was truly one of the more beautiful things I have had the chance to capture.”Although stingray sightings are common near Alabama’s shores. Middleton wrote on Twitter that he never witnessed a stingray migration before seeing it on the “screen” of his drone remote.Cownose rays can be found along the Gulf of Mexico. Changes to their migration patterns can often be triggered by seasonal changes to water temperature and sun orientation, according to experts. Credit: Travis Middleton via Storyful
Dozens of people waited in line outside a GameStop store in Brooklyn, New York, on November 27 as Black Friday sales got underway.Carnell M Fugett shared this video of a line forming outside the GameStop on Pitkin Avenue shortly before the store opened at 7 am.Many gamers were willing to brave hours-long lines for the “highly coveted” PlayStation 5, which has been in high demand since its November 12 release. Credit: Carnell M Fugett via Storyful
The 36-year-old Asian elephant has spent most of his life in Islamabad Zoo, much of that time without a companion, and animal rights advocates have campaigned for him to be rescued from grim conditions. Cher tweeted her thanks after meeting Prime Minister Imran Khan on Friday "For Making It Possible For Me To Take Kaavan To Cambodia" Kaavan will be airlifted to the Cambodian province of Siem Reap. He has been training with international specialists from rescue organization Four Paws, armed with bananas and other treats to get him used to the small enclosure and loud noises of the 10-hour flight.
This French circus is stranded in Belgium The family-run Zavatelli Circus usually travels to 30 cities each year Now, unable to travel or perform across Europe it is waiting out the lockdown in a car park in the southern Belgian town of Gembloux and quickly running out of funds to feed the animals ZAVATELLI CIRCUS DIRECTOR, KEVIN DUBOIS: "For us, the confinement is very difficult because we are not working. We have no cash flow. Frankly, it is becoming an issue because we have 60 animals to feed which is €500 per week. And there are 25 people who work here. Frankly, it gets very very difficult. We don't know how to make ends meet."
The Nasdaq shot up to hit a record high in early trading Friday accompanied by a rise in the Dow and S&P 500. Lifting investor sentiment: optimism the economy would rebound next year and President Donald Trump’s statement that he would leave the White House if the Electoral College votes for President-elect Joe Biden. That outweighed concerns around an expected surge in coronavirus infections. The rally was broad with nine of the 11 major S&P 500 sectors gaining ground. The defensive sectors, utilities and real estate, traded lower. Bokeh Capital Partners chief investment officer Kim Forrest said the rally could get extended as more sectors participate. "I think areas like consumer discretionary has been underplayed as an area to invest in, and I think because - we were all sitting round in yoga pants essentially and not begin anything, but even yoga pants get boring so you go out and buy new ones.” Shares of big box retailers such as Walmart, Target, and Costco rose, but traditional department store operators Macy’s, Kohl’s, and Nordstrom declined. Masked shoppers turned up in smaller numbers at major U.S. retailers on Black Friday as early online deals and coronavirus concerns dulled enthusiasm for trips to the mall. The National Retail Federation sees a merry shopping season ahead, forecasting U.S. holiday sales will rise 3.6% to 5.2% over 2019.
German airline Lufthansa says it will become the first airline to operate a CO2 neutral cargo flight over this weekend. The carrier said on Friday (November 27) the flight would be made possible by using so called Sustainable Aviation Fuel (SAF) or biofuel. Peter Gerber is the chairman of Lufthansa Cargo Group. "A flight becomes CO2 neutral if, like in this case, it uses biofuel, which already includes CO2. We bought this biofuel and it was filled into the tank together with our partners and then the flight can take off." However, Gerber isn’t expecting biofuel to become used more widely anytime soon because, he says, it's “between three and six times more expensive than conventional kerosine.” Global oil demand has been crushed by the events of this year, with BP saying it might never recover to pre-crisis levels, leading to the closure of refineries. That’s prompting some owners to opt for a cleaner alternative - converting plants to produce biofuels. Europe's annual biofuel production capacity is currently 3 million tonnes, with Barclay’s analyst Joshua Stone predicting in October that is set increase to 8 million tonnes per year.
Britain is pushing ahead with the Oxford University AstraZeneca COVID-19 vaccine, asking its regulator Friday (November 27) to assess it for a possible rollout. Meantime the Philippines and Thailand secured millions of doses, giving the shot a vote of confidence after experts raised questions about trial data earlier this week. The UK government, which has secured 100 million doses of the vaccine, has targeted a rollout to begin before Christmas. AstraZeneca's candidate is viewed as offering one of the best hopes for many developing countries because of its cheaper price and ability to be transported at normal fridge temperatures. The Thai government signed a deal on Friday to procure 26 million doses of the vaccine and officials in the Philippines said they would secure 2.6 million shots and were negotiating a possible purchase of a further 1 million doses. The announcements came after some scientists raised doubts about the robustness of results showing the shot was 90% effective in a sub-group of trial participants who, by error initially, received a half dose followed by a full dose. AstraZeneca CEO Pascal Soriot said on Thursday that the drugmaker was likely to run an additional global trial to assess the efficacy of its vaccine using the lower dosage. The company had released trial data on Monday that showed its experimental vaccine prevented on average 70% of COVID-19 cases in late-stage trials in Britain and Brazil. While the success rate was 90% in the sub-group, some experts said the relatively small number of participants made it harder to be confident in the findings. AstraZeneca said the administering of the half dose had been reviewed and approved by independent data safety monitors and the UK regulator, adding the regulator publicly confirmed that there was "no concern".
Originally a cluster of unfinished buildings, the Mina Plaza towers were demolished to make way for the redevelopment of the port area, creating a new destination that appeals to both tourists and residents. Bill O'Regan, CEO of Modon, the company appointed by the UAE to oversee the demolition, said the intention is to redevelop the Wharf area into a traditional souq market. Footage provided by Modon Properties showed the towers collapsing inwards using "stable non-primary explosives".
Some shoppers were turned away without a PlayStation 5 after waiting for hours in line at a GameStop in Marietta, Georgia, which had two of the new gaming consoles in stock for Black Friday.Alma Pearson-Redhead said she arrived at the Marietta GameStop at 4:30 am with plans to get her child a PS5, but she left at 6:45 am when employees announced the store was sold out of its inventory of two.Pearson-Redhead said she was the 25th person in line, adding that there were about 50 people waiting behind her. Credit: Alma Pearson-Redhead via Storyful
Black Friday shoppers braved a cold front in Ardmore, Oklahoma, to wait outside of GameStop on November 27.Dustin Wallace said he filmed this video of people camped out in front of GameStop in Ardmore at 5:30 am, when temperatures were about 47 F. The footage shows several people draped in blankets and sitting in chairs.Many gamers were willing to brave hours-long lines for the “highly coveted” PlayStation 5, which has been in high demand since its November 12 release. Credit: Dustin Wallace via Storyful
Europe's largest 3D-printed house is being built Location: Wallenhausen, Germany It will be 380 square meters housing five apartments over three stories (SOUNDBITE) (German) SPOKESMAN FOR CONSTRUCTION SUPPLIER PERI, FABIAN MEYER-BROETZ, SAYING: "We have very high building standards in Germany, and this technology is in no way inferior. We are standing in what will be a very energy-efficient house. It will be very well sound-insulated. And of course in terms of design the 3D printer allows us to create all the shapes that you can imagine." 3D printing is faster than traditional building methods and requires fewer laborers (SOUNDBITE) (German) CEO OF BUILDING CONTRACTOR RUPP BAUDRUCK, FABIAN RUPP, SAYING: "It took two people 25 hours to print the ground floor. In comparison, it usually takes five people five days."
French authorities have suspended police officers accused of assaulting and racially abusing a Black man in Paris, after CCTV footage of the incident was released and caused an outcry. The music producer, who has identified himself as Michel, was beaten at the entrance to his studio. French President Emmanuel Macron was quoted by France's BFM TV as being "very shocked" by the CCTV and mobile phone images, which were obtained by the LoopSider news outlet and made headline news on French channels. The officers involved were suspended pending investigation at the interior minister's request. Michel told reporters he'd been walking in the street without a face mask, against French COVID-19 rules. When he saw a police car he went into his studio to avoid getting a fine. But the police followed him inside and arrested him, violently. The video purports to show them kicking and beating him, and he says they hurled racial abuse at him too. They then leave, and throw a tear gas canister into the studio. As anger grew, French soccer stars added to the chorus of condemnation. Kylian Mbappe tweeted that the video was "intolerable" and his fellow Les Bleus striker, Antoine Griezmann wrote: "My France is hurting." The alleged attack on Michel risks inflaming racial tension, and fuelling criticism of a draft law that would limit journalists' ability to show images of French police officers at work. The prime minister's office said on Thursday (November 26) it would set up an independent commission to propose a new draft of the legislation. Some "BlackLivesMatter" protests broke out in Paris in June, a month after the killing of George Floyd by a white police officer in the United States. The movement resonates in France, in particular in deprived city suburbs, where rights groups say accusations of police brutality, often against people with immigrant backgrounds, remain largely unaddressed. And Paris police were already under fire this week after social media photos and videos showed officers hitting protesters as they cleared out an illegal migrants campsite in a central Paris square.
VIDEO SHOWS: EMPTY STREETS OF BUENOS AIRES, OUTSIDE CASA ROSADA PRESIDENTIAL PALACE, LA BOCA NEIGHBOURHOOD, CITY WORKERS CLEANING STREETS / SOUNDBITES FROM MARADONA FANS RESENDING WITH COMPLETE SCRIPT SHOWS: BUENOS AIRES, ARGENTINA (NOVEMBER 27, 2020) (REUTERS - ACCESS ALL) 1. ARGENTINE FLAG WAVING IN LIGHT WIND 2. EXTERIOR CASA ROSADA PRESIDENTIAL PALACE 3. VARIOUS OF CITY WORKER CLEANING STREETS 4. EXTERIOR BOCA JUNIORS STADIUM 5. EMPTY STREETS 6. SIGN THAT READS (Spanish) ''GOD IS WITH GOD'' 7. VARIOUS OF MARADONA MURALS 8. LIT CANDLE AT MEMORIAL OUTSIDE BOCA JUNIORS STADIUM 9. FLOWERS, CANDLES, OBJECTS LEFT FOR MARADONA 10. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) MARIA EUGENIA, A 30-YEAR-OLD EMPLOYEE IN THE FAMOUS LA BOCA NEIGHBOURHOOD, SAYING: "Diego died and everything changed. For me, Diego is going to be a before and after due to the situation we are living in. I have seen many people cry that I had never seen cry. I hope we can all move on." 11. TEDDY BEAR 12. LIT CANDLE, FLOWERS 13. PHOTO OF MARADONA WITH FAN 14. SIGN THAT READS: ''THANK YOU FOR EVERYTHING DIEGO'' 15. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) WILBERT QUISPE, A 37-YEAR-OLD TOUR GUIDE, SAYING: "He had already been suffering a lot, with many personal and health problems. Personally, I say, I hope he is where he needs to be, he is happy and calm. I think he found the peace that he was looking for." 16. VARIOUS OF 41-YEAR-OLD ELECTRICIAN, DANIEL HERNAN LOPEZ, TAKING SELFIE 17. (SOUNDBITE) (Spanish) 41-YEAR-OLD ELECTRICIAN, DANIEL HERNAN LOPEZ, SAYING: ''Nobody was used to this, nobody tells you what you have to say or how you have to live without the greatest person in the world. For me the important thing is what 'Diego' did, like bringing us the cup (of the World Cup in Mexico 86), which made it so great in all parts of the world. We must be grateful and nothing more than that." 18. PEOPLE WALKING AROUND LA BOCA NEIGHBOURHOOD 19. VARIOUS OF MARADONA MEMORABILIA/ SOUVENIRS ON SALE 20. ARGENTINE FLAG WITH IMAGE OF MARADONA STORY: The city of Buenos Aires was recovering on Friday (November 27) from the aftermath of Diego Armando Maradona's massive funeral that took place at the Casa Rosada the day before, while fans were still seeking comfort. The flags in the public buildings were at half mast for the three days of national mourning arranged by the government of Argentina and cleaning personnel worked to put order in the streets that surround the mythical Plaza de Mayo, in front of the presidential palace. "Diego died and everything changed," Maria Eugenia, a 30-year-old employee in the famous La Boca neighbourhood, where the Boca Juniors court is located, the club of which Maradona was a player and a fan, told Reuters. "I have seen many people cry that I had never seen cry. I hope we can all move on," she added with her 5-year-old son, whom she took to a memorial site organised by the fans at one of the stadium entrances. Maradona, 60, was buried with an intimate ceremony late on Thursday in Argentina, after a massive farewell from fans, sports and political personalities. On the way to the cemetery, on the outskirts of Buenos Aires, thousands of people stationed next to the highways greeted the procession. "Personally, I say, I hope he is where he needs to be, he is happy and calm. I think he found the peace that he was looking for," said Wilbert Quispe, a 37-year-old tour guide. The charismatic soccer player, world champion with the Argentine national team in the 1986 World Cup, died on Wednesday at his home in the suburbs of Buenos Aires due to heart failure. Maradona had various health problems and weeks ago he had undergone surgery for a subdural hematoma. "Nobody was used to this, nobody tells you what you have to say or how you have to live without the greatest person in the world," said Daniel Hernan Lopez, a 41-year-old electrician while taking photos in front of the memorial site, where the fans left candles, flags, flowers and posters. "For me the important thing is what 'Diego' did, like bringing us the cup (of the World Cup in Mexico 86), which made it so great in all parts of the world. We must be grateful and nothing more than that," he added. (Production: Claudia Martini, Miguel Lo Bianco, Geraldine Downer)
Europe is racing to open shop doors for Christmas - but is the festive economy even worth salvaging? Numbers show that retail and hospitality sectors do enjoy a seasonal boost, but the jury is out on whether it actually does the wider economy much good at all. Take shopping. According to Deloitte, the top five Christmas spenders in Europe are Britain, Spain, Italy, Germany, and Portugal, which range from €387 to €639 per capita on average. In the UK, December sales are generally 50% higher than other months. That said, Black Friday has made the Christmas run-up less critical, online shopping eases pressure on brick-and-mortar, and some economists predict the economy would still benefit in other ways. For example, what you save on drinks at the office party may be spent on new furniture. The last-minute panic buying is one of the most visible aspects of the Christmas economy. But there are other less tangible, but equally real, economic impacts too. One is productivity, which can dive as the Christmas bustle distracts workers. Then there’s the cost to the environment of all the packaging and plastics. In the UK, last year saw output shrink 0.3% in November, rise 0.3% in December, and record zero growth in January. In other words, the economy idled. Working out the overall impact of Christmas on GDP is next to impossible. But data does at least suggest its significance is overestimated.
An Iranian diplomat and three other Iranians went on trial in Belgium on Friday (November 27) accused of planning a bomb attack in France in 2018. This is the first time an EU country has put an Iranian official on trial for terrorism. Belgian prosecutors charged Vienna-based diplomat Assadolah Assadi and three others with plotting an attack on a rally of the Paris-based National Council of Resistance of Iran, also known as NCRI. In the event, U.S. President Donald Trump's lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, gave a keynote speech. Authorities say the attack was foiled by a coordinated operation between French, German and Belgian security services. Farzin Hashemi is the Deputy Chairman of the NCRI Foreign Affairs Committee: "Today, this is a historical day. After 40 years of export of terrorism and involving in acts of terrorism in Europe and elsewhere, for the first time, an official of the Iranian regime - a so-called diplomat - is put on trial. So we are very happy that finally, justice is being done." Assadi was arrested while on holiday in Germany and handed over to Belgium. He is refusing to appear in court and did not attend the first day of the trial in Antwerp. He has not commented on the charges. Here's his lawyer, Dimitri de Beco: "My client asked me to represent him today. He let me know that he has the fullest respect for these judges but, as he considers that he should benefit from his immunity, they are not allowed to judge him. Also because his defence rights were not respected since the beginning of the procedure." Assadi was the third counsellor at Iran's embassy in Vienna. French officials have said he was in charge of intelligence in southern Europe and was acting on orders from Tehran. The Islamic Republic has repeatedly dismissed the charges, calling the attack allegations a "false flag" stunt by the NCRI, which it considers a terrorist group.
Skiers have hit the slopes in Switzerland as this year's ski season begins, They arrive despite an ongoing second coronavirus wave in Europe. But on the other side of the famed Swiss Alps, in a French ski village, it's a different story. Chair lifts stay still with no hope of restarting until at least January, as the country goes through a second lockdown. Mathieu Dechavanne is CEO of a cable car company in Chamonix. "We struggle to understand closing the resorts, especially since competing ski areas are open, in Spain, in Switzerland, in Austria, and that the museums in lockdown are opening soon." It's an issue that's dividing countries in Europe. German Chancellor Angela Merkel said Thursday (November 26) she wants Alpine countries to keep resorts shut, But she warned reaching an agreement with Austria over it has been tough - the Austrian lockdown ends on December 7 and resorts there plan to open by Christmas. "The ski season is approaching and we will try to reach an agreement in Europe on whether we can close all the ski resorts. Unfortunately it does not look like this will be so easy if you listen to what Austria is saying, but we will try again." Austria's Finance Minister said earlier this week that the EU should cover losses - which they estimate to potentially reach around $2.4 billion - if the bloc forces skiing sites to stay closed. However, the EU Commission said it's up to countries themselves to allow skiing for the season.
A Brexit deal could go down to the wire. With big differences remaining between the EU and UK. The two said on Friday (November 27) there were still substantial issues as the EU chief negotiator prepared to travel to London. Michel Barnier is making a last-ditch attempt to avoid a tumultuous finale to the five-year Brexit crisis. With just five weeks left until the UK finally exits the EU's orbit on December 31st, both sides are calling on the other to compromise. The hurdles remain fishing, state aid and how to resolve any future disputes. They're trying to strike a trade deal on goods that would safeguard nearly $1 trillion in annual trade as well as the peace in British-ruled Northern Ireland. The latter is a priority for U.S. President-elect Joe Biden. British Prime Minister Boris Johnson on Friday told reporters that there is 'a deal to be done if the EU wants it. "Let's be absolutely clear - this country can prosper and will prosper mightily in either event. And if we, if we have to come out with a so-called Australian style model, an Australian relationship with the EU, we will make a great success of it." Barnier said on Twitter he would travel to London on Friday evening for talks with Britain's chief negotiator David Frost. One EU diplomat said there are "only a few days left" for the talks, which have previously continued through numerous broken deadlines. European Commission chief Ursula von der Leyen said on Wednesday the EU was ready for the possibility of Britain leaving the bloc without a new trade accord.
Locals in the tiny Austrian town of Fucking have had enough of outsiders sniggering and stealing their road signs, prompting the mayor of the municipality to announce a formal name change. For years, the village has had to suffer at the hands of visitors taking photos and stealing anything with its name on, with English-language media gleefully reporting their frustration. As of January 1st next year, Fucking, not far from Salzburg, will be known as Fugging. Franz Meindl is the mayor of -- you know where…. "The immediate neighbour to the town sign whose house number sign was stolen countless times, but you need such a sign. So she had one made and just let them spell it with two 'G's and since then he has had his peace." Shortly after news broke of the Fucking decision, the German mountain community of Wank released a statement to say it had no plans to follow in its footsteps.
This Irish foreign minister, Simon Coveney, delivered what he said was an “important message for the children of Ireland” in parliament on November 26, confirming that Santa Claus would be exempt from any travel restrictions in place this Christmas.“We regard Santa Claus’s travel as essential travel,” Coveney said, meaning Santa would be exempt from the requirement to self quarantine for 14 days on arrival in Ireland. Santa will be able to come into Irish airspace, “and indeed … Irish homes,” the minister said, “without having to restrict his movement.”Coveney did request, however, that children stay in bed, to ensure social distancing as Santa was delivering their presents. Credit: Oireachtas via Storyful
Victoria said on Friday (November 27) it has gone 28 days without detecting any new infections, a benchmark widely cited as eliminating the virus from the community. The state also has zero active cases after the last COVID-19 patient was discharged from hospital this week, a far cry from August, when Victoria recorded more than 700 cases in one day and active infections totalled nearly 8,000. The spread of the virus was only contained after a lockdown lasting more than 100 days, leaving some 5 million people in Melbourne, Australia's second-largest city, largely confined to their homes. Australia's southern island state, Tasmania, was the last to open its border to Victorians. Tasmania closed its borders in March.