More than 500 injured by stingrays over holiday weekend along Southern California coast

It was a perfect way to put an unofficial end to the summer season, with warm weather and water drawing beachgoers to the coast over the holiday weekend – but more than 500 had to hobble home in pain.

Stingrays were out in full force over the three-day holiday, with lifeguards busy tending to big beach crowds who were splashing in the shallows to cool off – right where rays like to hang out. Lurking below the water’s surface, the ocean dwellers delivered painful puncture wounds to those who came too close.

The largest tally of injury reports came from Bolsa Chica State Beach, with 124 on Saturday, 64 on Sunday and another 42 on Monday. Nearby Huntington State Beach Beach had about 20 a day, said State Parks Lifeguard Chief Jeff David.

There were plenty of beachgoers who had to seek relief from the hot water in these yellow stingray first aid bags during the holiday weekend.(File photo by Cindy Yamanaka, Orange County Register/SCNG)

The stingrays “love” the gradually sloping beaches and sandy bottoms, he said.

Huntington City Beach also had its share of stingray responses, with 34 tallied on Saturday, 73 on Sunday and 18 on Monday. Of 130 medical aid medical aid reports those three days, 125 of them were stingrays, said Huntington Beach Marine Safety Lt. Claude Panis.

Panis said Sunday’s 73 stingray injuries were a near record for the city. “That’s a big spike.”

There seems to be high numbers when there’s low tides, which happened late afternoon each day as beach crowds hung around, he said.

“That’s usually the trigger point for us,” Panis said. “Anytime there’s a low tide like that, you’re at a higher risk. If it’s a lower tide, you might even avoid going out.”

He said extra caution should be used entering and exiting the water, suggesting the …read more

Source:: The Mercury News – Lifestyle


The death of Hong Kong’s extradition bill is a gift to Tiffany’s after protests wiped out 6 days of sales

tiffany shopping bag

Tiffany & Co will be celebrating the death of Hong Kong’s extradition bill.
The jeweler lost six days of sales last quarter after shutting its stores due to mass protests sparked by the proposed law.
Tiffany’s plans to open a new flagship store and expand its airport boutique in the region, which accounts for about 5% of its total revenue.
Watch Tiffany & Co trade live.

Tiffany & Co will be celebrating the death of Hong Kong’s extradition bill.

The jeweler lost nearly a week’s worth of sales in the region last quarter, after the government’s bid to allow fugitives to be detained and transferred to mainland China sparked three months of mass marches and clashes between protesters and police.

“The current situation is taking a toll on our business,” CEO Alessandro Bogliolo said on Tiffany’s second-quarter earnings call last week. “We estimate that during the second quarter, we lost nearly six full selling days due to unplanned store closures.”

Hong Kong is “critically important” for Tiffany’s, Bogliolo said. The company has 10 stores in the region, its fourth-largest market by sales after the US, Japan, and mainland China. Hong Kong generates about 5% of Tiffany’s total revenue, meaning a 20% drop in local sales would trim the total by one percentage point, Bogliolo added.

Tiffany’s underlying revenue in Asia Pacific inched up 1% last quarter, as higher sales in mainland China offset weaker trading in Hong Kong, the group’s earnings show. While the company faces a “unique set of challenges” in Hong Kong, Bogliolo said on the call, it’s committed to bolstering its presence in the region.

The jeweler plans to open a three-floor flagship store at 1 Peking Road, the region’s most popular shopping area for Chinese tourists, Bogliolo said. It also intends to expand its boutique in Hong Kong International Airport into …read more

Source:: Business Insider


Symposium: Britain’s image is changing: in Europe they no longer recognise us

Coming from Turkey, I know that the ballot box is not enough to sustain a democracy

Years ago, long after I had moved to London from Istanbul, I was on a panel with a conservative politician, who cut me off and said, “But surely you are not comparing Turkey with the UK, are you?” I had been talking about the threats to liberal democracy and cultural pluralism, and how in the post-financial-crisis world the new wave of reactionary politics could permeate countries including the UK. Taken aback, I stammered a bit before finding my voice again. More than what he said, it was the certainty of his tone that surprised me; his conviction that this country was beyond all such comparisons, his unfaltering confidence in British exceptionalism.

He was not alone in this assumption. Until recently, many assumed that some European countries were immune to the rise of populist nationalism and authoritarianism. After having gone through the darkest tunnels of nationalism and racism, Germany was believed to be “inoculated”. Sweden, with its deeply rooted welfare state, was seen as a bastion of liberal democracy. Years of the Franco regime, so went the argument, had made the Spanish more appreciative of pluralist democracy than citizens elsewhere. And the UK, with its long parliamentary history, was regarded as a staunch defender of civic liberties and the rule of law.

Today, we need to revise all these arguments. For the first time since the Second World War, a far-right party has entered the German parliament. A political party with neo-Nazi roots has been ascending in Sweden. The Vox movement in Spain longs for the “good old days under Franco”. Meanwhile, here in the UK, our parliamentary democracy is threatened like never before. People talk of “uncharted waters” – but the waters we are swimming …read more

Source:: New Statesman


The search for the 34 Santa Cruz boat fire victims has been suspended because everyone still missing is presumed dead

santa cruz boat fire

A 75-foot-long diving boat caught on fire off Santa Cruz Island, Southern California, early Monday morning.
Out of the 39 people on board the ship, only five people have been found alive. The remaining 34 are presumed dead.
The US Coast Guard called off its search and rescue operation on Tuesday morning, saying that it has found no indications of more survivors.
Visit Insider’s homepage for more stories.

Authorities have suspended their search for victims of the Santa Cruz boat fire, saying that they have no reason to hope they will find more survivors.

US Coast Guard Capt. Monica Rochester told reporters on Tuesday that the search ended at 9:40 a.m. local time that day because rescuers had seen no additional signs of distress or debris in the 24 hours after the fire.

Such signs might have indicated more survivors — and their absence suggested that there were none.

“It is never an easy decision to suspend search efforts,” Rochester said, adding that the Coast Guard and other agencies had covered an area of 160 miles in their search over the course of about 24 hours.

The search and rescue operation is now a recovery mission.

Of the 39 people on board the 75-foot-long diving boat, named Conception, only five — four crew members and a captain — were found alive, CNN reported. The 34 either confirmed or presumed to have died is made up of 33 passengers and one other crew member.

A total of 20 bodies have been recovered, and are now being sent to a coroner for identification, Santa Barbara County Sheriff Bill Brown told reporters.

Authorities have so far identified them as 11 female and nine male bodies, Brown said, but offered no further information.

Divers saw four to six other bodies among the wreckage, but were unable to retrieve them because the boat …read more

Source:: Business Insider


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