January 2010 Archives

Blog Analysis: Local report on weekend fires.

The lead I will be using for this analysis is from the Pioneer Press; "Two separate fires in Eagan over the weekend left 13 people displaced from their homes."

This lead contains the most important information as it clearly gives the who (13 displaced people), the what (two separate fires), the where (Eagan) and the when (over the weekend). It also skips over the how and why, which will be covered in the next paragraph.

This lead is from a local media outlet, so the use of Eagan without the "MN" abbreviation behind it is correct since the readership would be familiar with the area. Also it can be assumed that none of the 13 people are notable since they are not named individually.

There are no wasted words in this lead. Nothing is repeated or too detailed in a way that takes from the focus of the story, which is the fires and the people that were effected.

It is a straightforward hard-news lead, finding the action and giving the most important details about the fires. The details are rather general and would influence the reader to look further into the story.

The information about the fires severity is also scarcely detailed, but the report of 13 people being displaced by them adds texture to the description and gives reader an idea of how serious the incidents were.

Toyota criticized for slow response to vehicle issues.

Toyota is facing tough questions after a slow response concerning accelerator issues with eight models of vehicles that has sparked a major recall, reports the New York Times.

On August 28, an accelerator became stuck on a Toyota-made Lexus ES 350 sedan on a highway near San Diego, causing the car to hit an S.U.V. at 125 m.p.h. killing the four passengers inside.

The pedal maker for Toyota, CTS, is also being scrutinized in the wake of the recall. According to Businessweekly.com, CTS was singled out in the fallout after the recall was initiated on Jan. 21.

As of yet, there is no indication as to when Toyota will begin selling and making the eight car models again.

St. Paul pair find Winter Carnival Medallion.

The Winter Carnival Medallion, which is hidden for a bounty of $10 thousand each year when found, was found by two men that had also found it 4 years ago, reports the Pioneer Press.

Rob Brass and Jake Ingebrightson discovered the coveted medallion hidden under a fallen tree in Lilydale Park Wednesday afternoon, the second they found in four years along with one at Hidden falls in 2007.

When asked about how they came upon the medallion near a path after the park had been thoroughly searched, the duo told KARE11, "It looked like a bomb went off," Ingebrigtson said. "Dirt was overturned and the paths were untouched," Brass added.

The medallion hunt lasted 11 of the last 12 days, a nice treat for the thousands of hunters that joined in the search this year, reported the Pioneer Press.

The Star-Ledger reports that author J.D. Salinger has died at the age of 91 in his hometown of Cornish, New Hampshire.

Salinger is best known for his short novel "The Catcher in the Rye," which captured the teenage angst of the post WWII era through its main character Holden Caulfield, reports The Washington Post. It would turn out to be the only novel he had published.

The attention that this and his other literary works brought was met with infamous disdain by Salinger, who declined interviews for decades before his death, said the Los Angeles Times

UN plans new food distribution system to combat hunger in Haiti

The United Nations announced Saturday that it will begin a major food distribution program in Haiti aimed at feeding more than 2 million earthquake victims, The BBC reports.

The New York Times
reported that the UN distributed the first wave of food coupons on Saturday and that the coupons can be redeemed for rice on Sunday.

Jacques Montouroy, a logistical planner for Catholic Relief Services, told CNN that only women will be able to collect and redeem these coupons because of safety issues.

This new system will more help food more effectively reach victims who were not helped by the earlier, more chaotic food distribution system, The New York Times reports.

U of M student shot outside dorm, three others robbed nearby

A University of Minnesota student was shot outside of Centennial Hall in the last of three crimes that took place within blocks of each other Monday night.

The Pioneer Press reported the student was shot in his stomach shortly after 11 p.m., and that the crime was unprovoked. He soon was admitted to the Hennepin County Medical Center for surgery and is expected to survive.

According to the Star Tribune, the incident was the first of three crimes Monday night, the other two being armed robberies.

The first robbery took place near the 500 block of Huron Avenue SE, and the second in front of the Moos Tower on Washington Avenue, both within blocks of the shooting. The victims in both of these robberies were female.

University Police said that the victims in every case gave similar descriptions of the two suspects, and are receiving help from the Minneapolis police to determine if the incidents are connected, the Star Tribune reported.

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