In our news wrap Tuesday, Tropical Storm Grace swept through Haiti, increasing suffering after Saturday's deadly earthquake. After crossing Haiti, forecasters say it will grow into a hurricane as it heads for Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula. Firefighters in Northern California labored to save a town from the giant Dixie Fire. Maki Kaji — creator of popular number puzzle "Sudoku"— has died at age 69.
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In the day's other news: U.S. health officials are on the verge of recommending COVID booster shots everyone regardless of age. An announcement could come tomorrow calling for boosters eight months after the second dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccines.
Meanwhile, Chicago and New Mexico have ordered mask-wearing in all indoor places regardless of vaccination status.
And Texas Governor Greg Abbott, who strongly opposed mask mandates, tested positive. He has been vaccinated and says that he has no symptoms.
We will focus on the booster shot issue right after the news summary.
The suffering in Haiti deepened today, as the official death toll in Saturday's earthquake rose to well over 1, 900. To make matters worse, Tropical Storm Grace swept through overnight. Harsh winds and up to 15 inches of rain battered the country, as hospitals were still overwhelmed with thousands of people injured in the quake.
Others left homeless spent a long, miserable night before the rain finally ended this morning.
Theard Andrise, Earthquake Victim (through translator):
The rain fell on top of us. We slept sitting down on chairs. Nobody has come to help us. We have no tarpaulins. We sleep here sitting down. I don't want to go home. I am in God's hands.
Micheline Morose, Earthquake Victim (through translator):
It's not good here by the coast. My home was destroyed. I have nothing, nothing to use to sleep. Look, there's lots of children here. I really have nothing.
The earthquake has left more than 30,000 families displaced from their homes.
Tropical Storm Grace is powering up again after crossing Haiti, and forecasters say it will grow into a hurricane as it heads for Mexico's Yucatan Peninsula.
Meanwhile, the remnants of Tropical Storm Fred spawned tornadoes and dumped heavy rain across the Southeastern U.S. today. Thousands lost electricity in the Florida Panhandle after it came ashore Monday.
Firefighters in Northern California labored today to save a town from the giant Dixie Fire. Strong winds have fanned the flames within eight miles of Susanville, home to some 18,000 people.
The fire has been burning more than a month and has spread across more than 940 square miles. It is still only about a third contained.
In economic news, factory output rose 1.4 percent in July. That's the most in four months. But retail sales fell 1 percent as the latest COVID surge spooked shoppers.
The sales drop weighed on Wall Street today. The Dow Jones industrial average lost 282 points to close at 35343. The Nasdaq fell 137 points. That's nearly 1 percent. The S&P 500 gave up 31.
And a passing of note. Maki Kaji, who created the popular number puzzle sudoku, has died of bile duct cancer. He came up with sudoku in Japan in the 1980s, and the puzzle eventually became a global hit.
Maki Kaji was 69 years old.