Waiting for a Halloween costume or Christmas gift? The White House says it's helped broker an agreement with Walmart, FedEx and UPS for the Ports of Los Angeles and Long Beach to become a 24-hour, seven-days-a-week operation supply chain in an effort to relieve supply chain bottlenecks and move stranded container ships that are driving prices higher for U.S. consumers. With three months until Christmas, toy companies are racing to get their toys onto store shelves as they face a severe supply network crunch. Toy makers are feverishly trying to find containers to ship their goods while searching for new alternative routes and ports. Biden was scheduled to hold a virtual roundtable today with the heads of Walmart, FedEx Logistics, UPS, Target, Samsung Electronics North America, the Teamsters Union and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce.
Chase Doran Brownstein from the Department of Ecology and Evolutionary Biology at Yale University and the Stamford Museum and Nature Center has described two new dinosaurs, a herbivorous hadrosaur and a carnivorous tyrannosaur, that lived in the North American paleolandmass Appalachia during the Late Cretaceous epoch, some 85 million years ago. The specimens he examined were collected in the 1970s from the Late Cretaceous Merchantville Formation in New Jersey and Delaware. The remains of the 'Merchantville tyrannosauroid' were re-examined by a team at Yale University, who also analyzed fossils of what is dubbed a new herbivorous duck-billed hadrosaur. The Merchantville Formation, named by Knapp (29) in 1895, is a geological formation - a clayey glauconite sand - in the northeastern United States whose strata date back to the Late Cretaceous, around the time of the Santonian and Campanian age. Dinosaur remains are among the fossils that have been recovered from the formation. In a study of the rocks of Cretaceous age exposed in the banks of the Chesapeake and Delaware Canal in 1954 described the oldest of the marine units as consisting of dark blue to black, micaceous, glauconitic silt and dark greenish-brown, micaceous, glauconitic, very fine quartz sand containing considerable admixtures of silt and clay. This unit, because of its evident similarity to the type material in New Jersey, was called Merchantville and this designation has been used since that time by the Delaware Geological Survey and others.
South Is Delta Epicenter
Florida has seen at least three days of record-breaking COVID-19 cases since the start of August. Overall, the number of new daily cases has continued to increase in Florida and the state has become the new epicenter for COVID. According to CDC data, the state's seven-day moving average number of cases has continued to increase since mid-July to numbers that the state had not seen throughout the pandemic. The situation is especially dire in Louisiana and Florida, which have the country’s worst hospitalization rates. As of Wednesday afternoon, nearly 500 students in Palm Beach were quarantined after being exposed to COVID-19 just two days into the school year. On Friday, the Broward County Teachers Union announced that three unvaccinated teachers died of COVID-19 within 24 hours this week. Florida and Texas alone have accounted for nearly 40% of new hospitalizations across the country. Florida is 3rd in overall cases of Covid and 4th in overall deaths, Texas is 2nd in overall cases and 3rd in overall deaths from Covid so far. Simultaneously, the crush of new COVID-19 infections in Mississippi and Tennessee has become so dire that the state has turned to efforts reminiscent of the earliest days of the U.S. pandemic - the University of Mississippi Medical Center (UMMC) opening up a 20-bed field hospital in its parking garage on Friday morning. In Mississippi, where daily cases have doubled in the last two weeks, more than 4,400 students were quarantined from August 2 to 6, according to state data. Low vaccination rates and the more infectious Delta variant of the coronavirus have driven a surge of COVID-19 cases across the United States, overwhelming some state medical systems. Southern states, many with vaccination rates well below the national average, have seen explosive case growth. As of August 12th, although 83% of Texans are age 12 and older and eligible for a vaccine, only 44.8% are fully vaccinated. People between the ages of 20 and 59 now account for a higher proportion of COVID-19 hospitalizations than in January.
Rare “Magna Carta” for BGHS
Boca Grande Historical Society received a mountain of material - a rare and happy find during the pandemic - from the attic of a woman in Tennessee late last year. The donor, Patricia Bermingham (Colgan, Cunningham) LaSalle was born in Scotland, in the 30s, the youngest of four girls. She came to America when she was 12, through Ellis Island. Her family settled in Merchantville, N.J. and was the valedictorian of her graduating class at Kensington Girls High School of Philadelphia. She met and married Jack G. Colgan, a young stock broker from Philadelphia, then a full life in New Jersey followed. Patricia was a professional at RCA of Moorestown, working on classified information for the Navy for over twenty years. She was an avid lover of the English language, talent writer and lover of poetry and the arts and passed away on January 24, 2021.
FDA Shrimp Recall
More than two dozen shrimp products sold nationwide by retailers including Target and Whole Foods were recalled by the FDA on Friday in a salmonella outbreak that has stricken nine people in four states, hospitalizing three, federal authorities say. The recalled shrimp was sold coast-to-coast under multiple labels, such as Whole Food's 365 brand and Hannaford's Nature's Promise. Potentially tainted shrimp includes tempura rolls sold at Target stores in California and rings of frozen shrimp distributed by Chicken of the Sea and sold at Meijer, along with bags of Meijer-branded bags of frozen shrimp.
FEMA System Test 8/11
FEMA and the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) will test the nation’s public alert and warning systems at 2:20 p.m. ET on Wednesday, August 11th.The purpose of the test is to assess the effectiveness of the Emergency Alert System (EAS) to receive and convey a national message via radio and television and of the Wireless Emergency Alerts (WEA) infrastructure to deliver a test message to mobile phones. FEMA regularly tests the public alert and warning systems to assess the operational readiness of the supporting infrastructure. The tests also help identify any needed technological and administrative improvements to the systems.
International Arrival Changes
Beginning September 14, 2020, the US Government will remove requirements for directing all flights carrying airline passengers arriving from, or recently had a presence in, certain countries to land at one of 15 designated airports and halt enhanced entry health screening for these passengers. Currently, enhanced entry health screening is conducted for those arriving from, or with recent presence in, China (excluding the Special Administrative Regions of Hong Kong and Macau), Iran, the Schengen region of Europe, the United Kingdom (excluding overseas territories outside of Europe), Ireland, and Brazil. Resources will instead be dedicated to more effective mitigation efforts that focus on the individual passenger, including: pre-departure, in-flight, and post-arrival health education for passengers; robust illness response at airports; and, voluntary collection of contact information from passengers.