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News Wrap: Heavy Florence flooding closes interstates as death toll rises

In our news wrap Thursday, the death toll from Hurricane Florence rose to 41, as the long and slow recovery continues in the Carolinas. Also, today marked one year since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico. It’s estimated that nearly 3,000 people died from the storm and its effects in months that followed.

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  • Judy Woodruff:

    In the day's other news, the death toll from Hurricane Florence rose to 41, as the long slow recovery continued in the Carolinas. Floodwaters closed part of Interstate 95 in South Carolina. Parts of 95 and I-40 are also closed in North Carolina. Heavy flooding still covered parts of Lumberton today after a levee breach.

    The governor toured a railroad bridge with no floodgate that let the water through.

  • Gov. Roy Cooper, D-N.C.:

    This is going to be a multibillion-dollar effort. We have roads and bridges to repair. Clearly, we have a situation in Lumberton here where we need to make sure that, at the CSX line, we have got protection from the river under the bridge. There's a lot we need to do to shore up our infrastructure.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Duke Energy declared an alert today at a closed power plant near Wilmington, North Carolina. The utility is watching a flooded lake located near several coal ash dumps at the site.

    We will take a longer look at the environmental damage from Florence later in the program.

    Today marked one year since Hurricane Maria struck Puerto Rico. It is estimated that nearly 3,000 people died from the storm and its effects in the months that followed. The hurricane devastated the U.S. territory of three million people, destroying hundreds of homes and wiping out the power grid.

    One year later, power has been restored, but many homes look the same as the day after the storm hit.

    The latest summit of the Koreas has concluded. And the North's Kim Jong-un on sent word that he is eager to resume talks on denuclearization with the U.S. That is according to South Korea's President Moon Jae-in. The two leaders and their wives visited a legendary volcano in North Korea today.

    Afterward, Moon returned to Seoul and conveyed Kim's message.

  • Moon Jae-in (through translator):

    He said he hopes Secretary of State Mike Pompeo would visit North Korea soon, and also that a second summit with Trump would take place in the near future in order to move the denuclearization process along quickly. It would be a political declaration that would mark a starting point for peace negotiations. A peace treaty would be sealed after the North achieves complete denuclearization.

  • Judy Woodruff:

    Moon said he will meet with President Trump at the U.N. General Assembly next week and relay other messages from Kim.

    The World Anti-Doping Agency has reinstated Russia after a three-year suspension. It permits Moscow to bid again for major international sporting events. The Russians were suspended in November 2015 after findings that they used state-sponsored doping to help their athletes at the 2014 Winter Olympics. Russian officials denied the accusations.

    And on Wall Street, technology stocks led a charge to new records. The Dow Jones industrial average gained 251 points to close near 26657. That is an all-time high. The Nasdaq rose 78 points and the S&P 500 added 22, closing at a record 2930.

    And for the first time, women will take the stage in Harvard's famed Hasty Pudding review. That hasn't happened since 1844, when the annual productions began. Today's announcement says six women have roles in the 2019 show. It will also still include men in drag in what the troupe calls a no-holds-barred burlesque.

    Still to come on the "NewsHour", reactions to the latest developments in Brett Kavanaugh's confirmation; the Trump administration defends its policy regarding the war in Yemen; focus shifts to environmental hazards in the wake of Hurricane Florence; and much more.

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