It’s finally Friday. While this glorious day of the week is usually cause for celebration, there’s not much celebrating going on around the world. It’s a somber day for many, as an 8.9 magnitude earthquake struck off the coast of Japan today, the strongest ever recorded in the country. Read on for the details and other developing world and regional news.
- An 8.9 magnitude earthquake struck the eastern coast of Japan on Friday afternoon, triggering devastating tsunamis along the coastline of north Tokyo and causing several powerful aftershocks. Japan declared a state of emergency at a nuclear power plant after its cooling system failed. Officials around the Pacific warned residents of coastal areas (including parts of Hawaii and California) to prepare for a possible tsunami, but the initial reports were of minimal to no damage in the first places that the wave reached. Watch the video of the whirlpool created by the quake. (The New York Times)
- In lighter, celebrity news, Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake have finally called it quits. The couple, who began dating in 2007, released a joint statement: “Addressing the media speculation regarding Jessica Biel and Justin Timberlake’s relationship, we are confirming that they mutually have decided to part ways. The two remain friends and continue to hold the highest level of love and respect for each other.” (CBS News)
- For some hopeful news on this tragic Friday, a new report from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the U.S. National Cancer Institute (NCI) is reporting that the number of cancer survivors in the U.S. is at almost 12 million, and the percentage is contuing to grow. This is a huge jump from the 3 million survivors reported in 1971 and 9.8 million survivors reported in 2001. (US News and World Report)
- For the second consecutive Friday, the labor negotiations between the NFL owners and NFL Players Association continue this time, they’re deciding whether to extend talks or send everything into the federal court system. Instead of offering full financials, the NFL owners are still refusing to open their financial books to scrutiny by the NFL Players Association. (The Washington Post)
- Today, the DOW Jones Industrial Average saw the biggest plunge since August, opening at 11,976.96. (CNN Money)