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CNN BREAKING NEWS
Massive Quake Rocks Chile
Aired February 27, 2010 - 20:00 ET
THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.
DON LEMON, CNN ANCHOR: We're going to move on now. I'm going to tell our viewers I'm Don Lemon at the CNN world headquarters in Atlanta. You're watching CNN's breaking news coverage of the massive Chile earthquake and the tsunami waves and worries it spawned all across the Pacific. At this hour, at least 214 people are confirmed dead from the quake. At least 15 are missing. And Chile's president said just last hour that about two million people have been affected. Buildings have collapsed, bridges are destroyed and major roads have been split in two.
It all began about 3:30 this morning. That's when a magnitude 8.8 quake struck about 200 miles outside the capital of Santiago. There have been at least 45 aftershocks, including a 6.1 quake in Argentina that killed two people. Now, the quake sparked tsunami warnings across the Pacific and all the way to Hawaii. But Hawaii's waves were small and the state's tsunami warning was canceled just about an hour ago. An expert at the Tsunami Warning Center says it was a very, very close call.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GERARD FRYER, PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER: Yes, I think we've dodged a bullet. Yes, I think so. In fact, it's almost -- it's almost the best sort of tsunami you could possibly have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: Well, the images of coming out of Chile simply stunning. Imagine the terror if you were on this bridge this morning when the cement started to crack and it came crashing down. Traffic was moving on this bridge in Renca (ph) when the quake hit, the force smashing and overturning cars. The sheer power turned buildings into splinters, pebbles(ph). We're still learning the extent of the destruction, but we're hearing two million people are affected by this.
Rescue crews are scrambling to find survivors in the rubble, and searchers are going to have to work really around the clock to finish this. Some desperate relatives are using the Internet to find their loved ones.
All the latest on this massive earthquake is coming from our Chile desk, and that's where we'll find tonight Luis Carlos Velez. He is standing by for us. So Luis, thank you for joining us. What are you tracking right now as we talk to you, Luis? LUIS CARLOS VELEZ, CNN: Yes. Well, we have some information coming in here to the Chile desk, a lot of information right now. First of all, President Michelle Bachelet says that the death toll has risen to 240 people...
BROWN: Luis, we'll get back to you. We're having problems with Luis's microphone, as you can see there. But as we said, the information coming really from this quake out of Chile, coming from our Chile desk. Luis Carlos Velez is standing by. We're going to get back to him to get the very latest information on that.
In the meantime, why don't we head to New York City for a very interesting story really coming out of New Jersey. For hours, the Rojas family in New Jersey, they were frantic over what might have happened to their mother in Chile. You see her right there, our national correspondent. That's Susan Candiotti. She spent the day with the family awaiting word. So Susan, what happened? We hope it's good news.
SUSAN CANDIOTTI, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Well, ultimately, it was. The Rojas family owns a small grocery store in a town called West New Jersey, New York. It's right across from the Hudson River. And since early this morning, the family has been on the phone every 10 minutes, trying to call Iris Rojas because the family has a home in Santiago. And they've been frantic because they've been unable to reach her.
Here's what the family said.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: We don't want to think nothing happened to, like, our mom, and we're still hoping the best. She will -- at any moment, she will communicate with us.
CANDIOTTI: Exactly. If only you could even talk to someone else who lives nearby or -- to see how...
MANUEL ROJAS, IRIS ROJAS'S SON: That's right. We tried some neighbors. We tried friends that we have in common over in Chile. And people have tried to call her (INAUDIBLE) There's no communications. All communication are broke down in Santiago, and we don't know what time they're going to establish communications or -- we really don't know what's going on. I mean, it's really hard to say when you try to call every five minutes and you don't get an answer.
CANDIOTTI: Well, we also spoke with the father, and this is what he told us about how worried he was about his wife.
HECTOR ROJAS, HUSBAND (through translator): The truth is, she's very strong. I hope that nothing terrible's happened. I have faith in God that nothing terrible's happened and that I can communicate with her as soon as possible. (END VIDEOTAPE)
CANDIOTTI: Well, Don, good news. After trying all day, we found out that, in fact, their prayers have been answered. Iris is fine. The house did suffer damage. There's no power. There's been no water. So she spent all day looking for some way to reach her family. And finally, she found someone that had power. They had a phone. She called them and told them that she is all right.
And in a way, a similar story with Chile's ambassador to the United Nations here in New York, Ambassador Heraldo Munoz. His mother and his brother live in Santiago. Turns out he also had trouble reaching his family, and then he found out that they survived. Ambassador Munoz has been in a constant contact with his government, of course, while keeping an eye on images from home.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HERALDO MUNOZ, CHILEAN AMBASSADOR TO THE U.N.: Well, I'd like to be there to help, to be with my family, to be with my friends. So my first reaction is, here I am in New York City, thousands of miles away. I wish I was there instead of here. That is my first reaction -- and to be able to participate in the help.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
CANDIOTTI: Now, the ambassador says so far, Chile has not asked for help from the U.N. or from the U.S., though offers have been made. Of course, it's early and there will be more casualties found under rubble. But he says Chile is well prepared for these types of emergencies and even responded, you remember, with rescue crews to Haiti. But the road to reconstruction, of course, Don, can be a very long one.
LEMON: Absolutely. Susan, thank you so much for that. We really appreciate it.
Hey, we want to get you now live to Chile. This is our partner network in Chile, CNN Chile. They're interviewing people. And what we're seeing here, very much like what we saw in Haiti -- and you'll probably see the reporter there, who's reporting live for CNN Chile -- these are tent cities or just places where people are living on the streets. Again, much like in Haiti, their homes have been destroyed. Nowhere to go. And you see them sleeping there on cots.
We are monitoring this. Our Chile desk is monitoring it in Atlanta, the CNN world headquarters in Atlanta, and we're also monitoring the feeds coming in. There you see the reporter doing a live shot, taking us through exactly what is going on there. The reason we are not listening in to him is because this is for a domestic audience. He is speaking Spanish, and we are getting our folks over at the Chile desk to translate.
In the meantime -- that is a perfect segue. Why don't we get to Luis Carlos Velez, who is tracking it right now from the Chile desk. So listen, Luis, you saw the live shot there from our partner network, CNN Chile. Again, much like Haiti, people are now living in tent cities and they'll probably be doing this for a while.
VELEZ: Absolutely. That's right, Don. It's almost 10:00 PM in Santiago in Chile. The video that we were watching is video live from CNN Chile. And obviously, as you are watching over there, people are trying to establish themselves out there in the streets, trying to gather some shelter. And obviously, they're scared because the earth continues moving, and we have seen many aftershocks after the earthquake this morning.
Also, President Michelle Bachelet talked about one hour ago. She said that the number of people dead right now accounts to 214, and also two million people -- two million people -- resulted affected by the earthquake. Let's listen.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
PRES. MICHELLE BACHELET, CHILE (through translator): The forces of nature have hurt our country greatly, and we are now having to face adversity and having to stand again. And we are taking all necessary measures to normalize little by little the functioning of all the basic services and utilities in our country. But there's a great task ahead of us.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ: What a way to finish the government. President Michelle Bachelet is close to finish her term. Now is the turn of President- elect Sebastian Pinera. He's been following this crisis very closely. This is what he said.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
SEBASTIAN PINERA, CHILEAN PRESIDENT-ELECT (through translator): We have been in perfect coordination with the Ministry of the Interior. On any basis, a tragedy of huge proportions. We have a number of victims. That increases minute by minute, and that number will continue to rise. My first reaction is solidarity with those families that have lost loved ones and also with those that are wounded. There are thousands of wounded people that will require help and care, and we're coordinating with the Ministry of the Interior and ONAMI (ph) so that the aid is timely.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
VELEZ: Although authorities are saying numbers, are giving numbers out there, there's a lot to be done over there in Chile, Don.
LEMON: All right, thank you very much. We really appreciate it.
So hey, listen, we told you that our partner network in Chile, CNN Chile, was live. Let's listen in. It's being translated into their reporting right now.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We are living moments of tension. And you heard the words of the president. Some people are trying to receive some assistance, and many of them are trying to learn what is the situation that is going to happen. And they're basically living on the streets. They don't want to go back to their homes.
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): What area are you in?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE (through translator): We're in Santiago, two blocks from the Bastille (ph) neighborhood. And we're here. We came Langai (ph) Park or Plaza, and we've been here since 9:00 (ph) in the afternoon today. But this -- you can see this scene in different cities -- different parts of the city. In the eastern part of the capital, you have two different landscapes of the same phenomenon. It affects all of the social strata.
Ramon, I don't see that they have electricity there. And right now it's nighttime, and that is what contributes to the sense of insecurity and lack of safety. Of course, we have areas where we have public lighting, but inside of the homes in this area, we don't have electricity. Some people have been able to connect a generator, but -- and some other homes that have generators -- but many people don't have that. But the most important that people are asking for is the lack of security, lack of protection or lack of security. You see that wall, for example, that roof that is about to collapse.
LEMON: So listen, we want to tell you, that is live. That is the power of CNN. That is our partner network in Chile, CNN Chile in Santiago, in a different language. This time it's Spanish. Before, it was French that people were speaking. Same circumstances, an earthquake hit them, of course, unknowingly, and they're ending up with no homes, no place to go. Thousands and thousands of people are homeless because of what happened.
We want to tell you that we're going to continue to watch our partner network there in Chile, in Santiago, to see what they're reporting. And at times, just like we just did, we will tune in. We'll dip into it so that you can see what's happening live on the ground there. It's very important.
And we're also -- it's also important that we do this for you. To keep you up to date on all the breaking news happening in Chile, Hawaii and also in the Pacific, you can find the very latest on relief efforts, what you can do to help, try to get those people that you just saw off the streets. Go on line to Impact Your World, that's Impact Your World, CNN.com/impactyourworld.
Former "American Idol" contestant Elliott Yamin caught in the middle of the Chile quake.
ELLIOTT YAMIN, "AMERICAN IDOL" (via telephone): The building was swaying back and forth, as was my room. Things were starting to fall off of the wall. The lights were starting to flicker on and off. And then that swaying very abruptly turned into just a very -- just a very violent shake.
(END VIDEOTAPE) LEMON: That was just a little bit, really, the beginning of what he had to say. You're going to hear more. Barely up for air, from air, from Haiti, the Red Cross is preparing to help with Chile aid.
Also, we want to know what's on your mind tonight. Become part of this show. Tell us what you're doing, how you're helping out, what you want to know about the situation happening in Chile, or any other story here on our network. Send us an I-report, send us a tweet. We're back in a moment.
LEMON: OK, Jacqui, we talked about Hawaii dodging a bullet. But we said not everyone is out of the woods yet.
JACQUI JERAS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: That's right.
LEMON: And you're getting some new information now.
JERAS: Yes, that's right. Tsunami warnings are still in effect for Russia and also Japan. And we have some new information from the Japan meteorological agency. And this map shows you the area of concern, and they're worried about the northern end of this island here. To put it in perspective for you, Tokyo is right about here, OK? But this whole island very, very populated, and they're expecting this red area that we could potentially see a tsunami of three meters. So do the math. That's about 10 feet. So that is certainly very significant, and so they're on high alert for what they would call -- there you can see it -- a major tsunami in effect with this.
And if we look back at history and some other major quakes that have happened off the coast of Chile, some of the biggest tsunamis that we've seen have actually ended up in Japan. Let's show you this map here. This is the time travel that we've been showing you all day. And this will show you -- here's that 12-hour mark. Here's Hawaii at the 15-hour mark, 18-hour mark. You get over towards the Aleutian Islands, and there you can see the 21-hour mark. And here's Japan right around 24 hours. So do all the math, and we're looking at, you know, maybe 11:00 o'clock Eastern time that we would start to see the first series of this wave.
So you know, the Pacific basin, huge ocean, and these waves are going to continue to propagate. This is a computer model forecast that was put together by NOAA. And this is how they're expecting the waves to behave with this particular event. So they put all this data together and simulated what they think that's going to look like. And here you can see the timing of how many hours out.
And there it starts to hit Japan, so that's 22 hours out. So you know, that's maybe 11:00 o'clock or midnight Eastern time. And you can see the behavior of these waves as they move on through here. And they'll channel up any of these bays and these little funnels, and this will actually propagate back, believe it or not. So we could see some sloshing throughout the entire Pacific Ocean for well over a day, maybe even two days. So unsettled conditions will continue, and we do think that these tsunamis will continue to be a threat. Again, all of them in the United States have been dropped, all the advisories in California, the warning for Hawaii. Those have been dropped. So we're just focusing in on the potential for a tsunami yet in Russia, as well as Japan. So as we get closer to that 11:00 o'clock hour Eastern time, Don, as you know, we'll here. We'll still be on the air and we'll take you through it.
LEMON: I'm glad you said it because if you didn't, I would have. We will be here live at least -- at least -- until midnight because we may be saying -- may be saying Hawaii has, you know, dodged a bullet, but there are still other places where these waves are going and where they fear the tsunami might cause some damage. Jacqui Jeras will be here to help us through it. Jacqui, thank you so much.
LEMON: Meantime, we want to check your top stories right now. A suicide bomber in Pakistan has struck a police station, killing three people and injuring more than 20 others. It happened in the Northwest Frontier province. It is the third time in a week that a police station in that region of Pakistan has been attacked.
Socked in by snow and in the dark, utility crews are trying to restore power to about half a million people all across the Northeast. Believe it or not, that is down from more than one million homes and businesses that lost electricity in Friday's slow-moving storm. Heavy snow, hurricane-force winds and flooding rains battered the region and canceled more than 1,000 flights.
The show went on today at Florida's SeaWorld three days after a female trainer was killed by a 12,000-pound whale. Some 2,000 people packed the park's stadium for the first show, which included a memorial for the dead trainer. The killer whale did not perform today, but officials say he will be part of future shows despite now being involved in three deaths.
A tragedy for the Osmond family to tell you about tonight. Singer Marie Osmond's 18-year-old son has died. Now, media reports say that the young man jumped to his death from his Los Angeles apartment building. In a statement released through her publicist, Marie Osmond said she and her family are devastated and are in deep shock over their loss.
President Barack Obama will make an announcement next week on what his spokesman calls the way forward on health care reform. Meantime, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tells our Candy Crowley that she's not worried about apparent changes and how the public views the health care debate.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
CANDY CROWLEY, HOST, "STATE OF THE UNION": When we looked at our polling numbers just from yesterday, we had almost three quarters of Americans who said they need to drop this bill, just stop talking about health care and move on to something else, or they need to start new. So don't the Republicans have a point? REP. NANCY PELOSI (D-CA), SPEAKER OF THE HOUSE: The point is, is that we have a responsibility here. And the Republicans have had a field day going out there and misrepresenting what's in the bill. But that's what they do.
CROWLEY: So it's been a messaging thing?
PELOSI: That's what they do.
CROWLEY: You think people don't understand the bill?
PELOSI: No. I don't think -- there isn't a bill. When we have a bill, which we will in a matter of days, then that is the bill that we can sell. Our bill, the House and the Senate bill, have some major differences which we're hoping now to reconcile. And then when we have a bill -- as I say, you can bake the pie, you can sell the pie, but you have to have a pie to sell. And when we do, we will take it out there. I feel very confident about what's in there.
LEMON: All right, and here's a reminder for you that you can see Candy's full interview with House Speaker Nancy Pelosi tomorrow morning 9:00 Eastern on CNN's "State of the Union." And Candy will also interview Senate Republican leader Mitch McConnell.
So listen, we know that these are dire economic times, and the Red Cross has been having trouble -- let's just be honest -- with donations. So with the huge effort that they supplied for Haiti and other recent disasters, how are they dealing with this? How are they prepping to head to Chile now? Well, we'll talk to a representative about their plans and what you can do to help out. They need it.
LEMON: Musician and former "American Idol" contestant Elliott Yamin was in Chile when the quake hit. Our Josh Levs spoke with him about what that was like.
YAMIN (via telephone): It was about 3:20 in the morning. I was on the sixth floor of our hotel in my room, at my desk, coincidentally. Go figure. I was actually tweeting at the time that the earthquake struck. And it was just, you know, obviously, without warning. It was just a very abrupt kind of swaying back and forth. And then...
JOSH LEVS, CNN: Swaying, as in the building started swaying, the whole building?
YAMIN: Right. The building was swaying back and forth, as was my room. Things were starting to fall off of the wall. The lights were starting to flicker on and off. And then that swaying very abruptly turned into just a very -- just a very violent shake. And that's when I stood up and -- stood up and kind of headed towards my doorway and opened my door, of course, and -- just to see if anybody else was doing the same and if anybody else was out on the -- you know, in the hallways. And I was kind of yelling out, Earthquake, earthquake! Get out! You know, Get in the doorway.
I just feel very lucky to have sought out safety. You know, I just took the steps. There was one lone person who happened to be my neighbor next door to me who was left on the floor at the time. And as I was yelling out, I saw him kind of peek around the corner. And then he sort of headed for the stairs, and amidst the building kind of rumbling. It was just -- it was like a movie. It was like -- it was like a Hollywood film. You know, we're running down the hall as the -- we're being kind of strewn about the hallways until we reached the staircase and ran down six floors of stairs to safety, and luckily, got out unharmed, unscathed.
LEMON: Former "American Idol" contestant Elliott Yamin in Chile when that quake struck.
Listen, the devastation in Chile comes just six weeks after a massive earthquake just ravaged Haiti. So how will the Red Cross handle both disasters now? Not just those disasters, I'm sure this next guest will attest to their dealing with more disasters than that. I'm joined now by Tracy Reines in Washington. She's the director of the international disaster response at the Red Cross.
Listen, you guys are always juggling. You always have your hands full. And as I said earlier, it's dire economic times. I'm sure that you guys are feeling it, as well. So how do you respond to this situation?
TRACY REINES, RED CROSS: Well, it's true. We still have over 300 international response workers -- sorry, 600 international response workers in Haiti from 30 different countries. That's going to be a very long effort that will be for quite a while. It's a really challenging situation.
The good news is, with the power of the International Red Cross network, we are still able to support Haiti, as well as Chile simultaneously. So we have financial resources we've made available to the Chilean Red Cross. We have a small team going down to Mendoza (ph), Argentina, to cross overland into Santiago tomorrow to support air (ph) assessments and to support the Chilean Red Cross in whatever way we can. So we're ready and we're moving already.
LEMON: Let me ask you this. Many times -- because you are the American Red Cross and we know that you guys are always there to help. We'll talk to how people can help you in just a moment. But you often get information about the hardest-hit areas or areas that many people may not know about. You said that you're going to certain places. What are you hearing? Are there areas or any places that you're hearing that have not been reported about or that are underreported about the devastation in Chile? REINES: Well, as you know, communications are really challenging right now, so the Chilean Red Cross is working with about 30 of its branches to get more information on what's happening and establish communications. So we're doing everything we can on the ground to get more of that information. I think we'll know more tomorrow. But right now, we're working on the ground and doing air assessments to try to get that.
LEMON: And of course, Tracy, you're going to update us when you get that information. So listen, you guys...
LEMON: ... are always there, always there, and it doesn't matter where the disaster is...
LEMON: ... or how big the disaster is. So how can people help you?
REINES: That's a great question. Thank you for the opportunity. The American Red Cross works in disasters all around the world, some that make the news and some that don't. You can support earthquakes like this by going to Redcross.org and supporting our International Response Fund. It allows us to support places like Chile, as well as things that you may or may not even hear about on the news. So again, Recross.org for our International Response Fund. We're grateful to be able to help and grateful for the support of the American people. They're always incredibly generous. So we're here.
LEMON: Hey, Tracy, best of luck to you. Update us if you get any information about areas that are hardest hit or...
LEMON: ... things -- something you think we need to know about. Hey, listen, I want to tell everyone Tracy Reines is in Washington tonight. She is the director of the International Disaster Response at the Red Cross. We know the Red Cross always helps, so if you can help the Red Cross, please do so. Thank you again, Tracy.
And we also want to tell you that you can keep up to date on the breaking news happening in Chile, in Hawaii and the Pacific. And also we want to tell you, Japan possibly now may become part of this, in the grips of this, in danger of a tsunami. We're going to report to you about that.
But for the latest on the relief efforts here is how you can help. Just go online to our impact your world page, cnn.com/impact, cnn.com/impact. We told you how you can help. We told you what the Red Cross is doing. Now we're going to tell you about the U.S. response to Chile's catastrophe. A live update from Washington and President Obama's message for the people of Chile.
Plus an inside look at one of the most powerful earthquakes ever measured, how it unfolded in the middle of the night.
LEMON: Listen, it is almost impossible to overstate the scale of this earthquake in Chile. The massive force sending panic across the Pacific region. It all started to play out when most people were asleep in bed.
LEMON (voice-over): It hit in the middle of the night, 3:34 a.m. local time off the coast of Chile, a massive 8.8 magnitude earthquake shaking the ground with unbelievable force.
VOICE OF ROLANDO SANTOS, SR. VICE PRESIDENT, CNN CHILE: There was a violent shaking in Santiago, no question about it. I literally got knocked out of bed and onto the floor and it was pretty clear because of the length of the earthquake that it was going to be a major earthquake.
LEMON: The force 800 to 900 times stronger than the earthquake that devastated Haiti in January.
VOICE OF LORENA RIOS, VISITING SANTIAGO, CHILE: The intensity kept going up and up and up. And everything was moving. I actually thought that the ground was going to swallow the entire car.
LEMON: The damage on land is only part of the problem. The rumblings sent pulses across the Pacific triggering tsunami warnings in dozens of countries from Russia to Indonesia, Japan, Australia and in the U.S., Hawaii.
VOICE OF BARRY HIRSHON, PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER: Many, many waves and what will happen is civil defense, when we think that the amplitudes have decreased, then civil defense will give an all clear that it is safe to come back. But I would stay away until civil defense gives an all clear.
LEMON: Chile's president taking to the airwaves, declaring areas of catastrophe, urging people to stay calm.
PRES. MICHELLE BACHELET, CHILE (THROUGH TRANSLATOR): Sometimes people stay in homes that are high risk just to try to protect their property. I would like to make a call at higher moral conscience, basic moral higher conscience because when we have such a catastrophe of this nature, we are all involved.
LEMON: Now the death toll climbs from a rumbling earth.
LEMON: We want to give you a quick update on the earthquake in Chile right now. At least 214 people confirmed dead and at least 15 more or missing. Chile's president says about 2.2 million people affected by the quake. Buildings have collapsed, bridges are destroyed and major roads have been split in two if not more pieces than that. It happened about 3:30 this morning as we said. The magnitude of course, 8.8, struck about 200 miles outside of Chile's capital. That's Santiago. There's been at least 45 aftershocks, including a 6.1 quake in Argentina that killed two people. The quake sparked tsunami warnings across the Pacific and all the way to Hawaii. But Hawaii's waves were small and the state tsunami warning was canceled just a short time ago. An expert at the Pacific tsunami warning center says it was a close call.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
GERARD FRYER, PACIFIC TSUNAMI WARNING CENTER: Yeah. I think we dodged a bullet. Yeah. I think so. In fact it is almost the best sort of tsunami you can possibly have.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
LEMON: We're going to have much, much more on the damage in earthquake-torn Chile just ahead. But we've also got some other stories that we're going to tell you about, including this story. A former NBA player accused of sexual assault and sex trafficking.
And hiding in plain sight. Reports tonight that Iran making its nuclear weapons stockpile visible for all to see. Why?
LEMON: We are going to continue to follow Chile, but we want to give you some other stories that are happening. They are trying to get back to normal at Florida's Sea World just three days after a female trainer was killed by a 12,000-pound whale. Some 2,000 people attended the first show. That show included a memorial for the dead trainer. The killer whale did not perform but it will. Officials say it will be part of future shows despite being involved in three deaths there.
In Iran, today's "New York Times" is reporting that Tehran has moved almost all of its nuclear stockpile to a plant above ground. An international inspector says that is like putting a bull's-eye on it. Some even speculate that Iran is inviting an outside attack to unify the politically divided country.
Zimbabwe's president got a birthday bash with a huge price tag despite the fact much of the country lives in poverty. Supporters of President Robert Mugabe say they dropped $300,000 on celebrations. The claim they raised the money from donors. Mugabe called a dictator by his critics has managed to hold on to power for three decades. He is now 86 years old.
Listen to this one. A former NBA all-star has been arrested on charges of sexual assault of a child and sex trafficking. Alvin Robertson, who played for the San Antonio Spurs was taken into custody yesterday in Bentonville, Arkansas. Police say he was one of seven people who kidnapped a 14-year-old girl, forced her into prostitution and made her dance at a strip club.
There will be no face-to-face meetings for now, at least for now, for the jailed couple accused of kidnapping Jaycee Dugard and holding her hostage for 18 years. A California judge says Philip Garrido and his wife may talk by phone twice between now and April. Jaycee was just 11 years old when she was snatched outside of her house back in 1991.
Images of disaster, on the scene in Chile. Our I-reporters have been sending us incredible pictures of what the earthquake did to that country. We are going to show them to you next and also we are working on some exclusive video for you. We are going to try to get to you in this hour of the earthquake moments after it happened.
LEMON: OK. Let's bring Jacqui Jeras. Jacqui, listen, I want to tell our viewers, let's set this up for our viewers because Jacqui has been guiding us through this, our meteorologist. Jacqui we have some exclusive video that we want to show now that CNN has obtained. I want to set it up. Jacqui is going to talk to us about it as well. We're all going to listen to it for the first time. This is from Tera TV. It is in Chile. It was taken and told by our international desk, our Chile desk in Vina del Mar (ph) which is just northwest of Santiago. I'm told here (INAUDIBLE) at the desk that people are frantic, they are panicking. You see (INAUDIBLE) going down and then you'll see reaction. The reporter on the scene, listen in.
Listen, I was just talking to our Chile desk there. There you saw power lines down. I was asking them, Jacqui -- let's bring Jacqui up. You can roll some of the video because there is more of it. But we won't take all the sound. Jacqui as we're looking at this, we are trying to get this translated and that is what I was talking to the Chile desk about. They're going to translate the sound, exactly what these people were saying. And I want to tell our viewers again, not only is this new video, this is exclusive video to CNN from someone that we have an agreement with there. It is from Tera television. Our reporter is reporting at the time. This is moments, just seconds after the earthquake hit Chile. This is in Vina del Mar, Jacqui, just northwest of Santiago.
JACQUI JERAS, CNN METEOROLOGIST: Wow and that is a fair distance from where the epicenter was too, Don. So it is amazing to see pictures like that. You can see the transformers going or power lines being blown up there. You can see that things became askew. It looked like maybe a building or something, did you see that, looks like it was tilted sideways. So obviously very violent shaking and quite a bit of damage being done at that time. But notice this calm period right there, too, Don. So it looked like it came in that one big wave or kind of shock type of thing and then calmed down a little bit. We have had varying reports from people as to how long this actually lasted. A lot of it depends on where you are and also what type of soil you are on, by the way. The closer to the coast, you have very sandy, very silty soil. And so when that happens, the shock waves can get caught in that and you'll see a lot more shaking as opposed to maybe when you're over a rockier area.
LEMON: Jacqui, did you see the sparking of those electrical lines there because obviously the rumbling, an 8.8 magnitude quake obviously can do a lot of damage. That is really one of the big concerns is when these power lines start to arc and spark.
JERAS: Right. You can see them swaying. There is the big pop. Absolutely, power outages is often one of the first things to go. A lot of times a water supply will get cut off immediately and this type of thing as well and so that is why we tell you to get to the safest spot that you can under a shelter immediately and then once it stopped, you want to be outside. It is not the earthquake that is going to get you. It is the buildings that you happen to be in.
LEMON: Jacqui listen, for a while there watching overnight and early today, couldn't get any pictures out of there. It was really slim and now we are starting to get more video. I talked about this earlier with Josh, the longer it goes on, the more pictures we are going to see. As we go through this, much, much more of this video, again new video into CNN moments after that quake happened in Chile. This is exclusive video and you see people there. We're going to hear from those people, get it translated for you. But Jacqui as we do this, we want to say not everybody is out of the woods yet because you have a warning in Japan. Tell us about that.
JERAS: That's right. This is still a tsunami warning. Earthquakes that happen on the ocean floor can displace the water and that will create the tsunami wave or a big rise in the water. All of the warnings have been canceled now for the United States of America, but Russia as well as Japan still have warnings at this time. There you can see the propagation map. We are talking about probably two to three hours from now when the first waves are expected to hit Japan. Here is a map from the Japan meteorological agency which shows you the area of greatest concern (INAUDIBLE) parts of the island right here where they think the highest threat of a tsunami could exist for a major tsunami, which could be as high as 10 feet. Just because we saw three feet in Hawaii doesn't necessarily mean we are not going to see something more of that as these waves continue to propagate.
There are a lot of different reasons as a result of that, but mainly it has to do with the (INAUDIBLE) basically think about the topography of the ocean floor and the coastline. So that water, it's a big column of water, a tsunami as opposed to maybe a hurricane surge. It's just kind of that (INAUDIBLE) This is the whole column and as that moves forward, that will get pushed up the coastline and that is when you get those big, big waves generating. The sharper the incline, the higher that some of these waves can go. When you look at some of these little bay areas like that, all that water gets funneled in there and we'll see greater heights up here as a result as well. Don.
LEMON: Jacqui, we will be standing by, Jacqui, stand by again. I want to tell our viewers we just got some new exclusive video into CNN. Jacqui again telling us there is a tsunami warning in Japan. This video into CNN. This is only the beginning. We have tons of it that we're going to show to you and also we are going to translate it for you so you can see really as this was occurring, what was going on. That is seconds after it happen, looks like it was happening as a report was --- as this was reporting there and as this was being filmed, videotaped. That earthquake happening in Chile. Much more of that to come right here on CNN. Jacqui is standing by as well. So listen, I want to tell you, around the world, many people headed straight online for images of the earthquake that struck Chile and for information about their loved ones. I want to bring in our Josh Levs now with some of the most dramatic pictures of the day. Josh.
JOSH LEVS, CNN CORRESPONDENT: I want to show you some of the powerful pictures that have been -- that I've been sent online today. Let's zoom in right here. The first thing I'm going to show you is a website called mashable.com which we often link to from cnn.com. What they have done is pulled together some of the best twit picks, this means people inside Chile posting photos on Twitter and then they have pulled out this list and when you go to the main page of mashable.com, you see that right there. I find this one striking because if you look at that sign right there, that is now on its side it says Internet. Apparently it is some kind an Internet cafe. This is all inside Chile now. You can see some of the things that have been going on there.
One of the big reasons people are using the Internet today, they are concerned about their loved ones. We have been hearing throughout the day, 12, 13 hours, throughout the day, we've been hearing from people all over the world worried about loved ones. Take a look here. Google has set this up. It's called the Google person finder. And what they're doing now is they are giving you this ability to basically type in a name and maybe someone out there will have information on that person. So that if you are looking for someone or if you have information about someone, you jump in there, you provide the information or you say who you are looking for. It could help you get information about your loved ones. Some people don't have access to cell phones right now. In a lot of cases, it's a matter of communication. The web is jumping in there.
Also Don was talking about I-reports. It's time to get to those. Let's take the screens we have for you here. I want you to see some of the powerful pictures we have been getting throughout the day from Chile. If you look at the side of that building there, it's torn apart. It's falling apart. These come from Alejandro Garcia, in (INAUDIBLE) which is a neighborhood in Santiago there and you can see -- look at that. Let you sit on that one for a second. Keep going, it's cool. But all these buildings are falling apart.
We have seen plenty of destruction in so many of these photos. There you go. They brought it back. Let's just sit on that one for a second because if you look at the extent of the rubble there, you can tell some of this really beautiful ancient structures. Anyone who's been to that area knows a lot of those buildings and what they look like and we see unfortunately in too many cases just turned to rubble.
LEMON: All right. That was our Josh Levs showing us really those unforgettable images out of Chile. If you want to find out more about the relief efforts in Chile, what you can do to help, just go online and visit our impact your world page, cnn.com/impact, cnn.com/impact. I want to thank the viewer when we were reporting about that exclusive video because some people were talking to me in my ear. The viewer says, "Tranquillo." "Be calm," that is what the guy in the Chilean video is saying over and over. And we're also working on other things that they were saying, be calm. Your mom is worried, isn't she? So listen, we're going to play a little bit more of that. You're going to get that on CNN tonight.
I want to also tell you about another CNN exclusive, six members of Congress, for not much longer though. They are retiring. Why?
LEMON: Exclusive video and new video into CNN now as the earthquake happened in Chile. Listen in.
As you see there on our screen, images of disaster. You see the lines, the electrical lines sparking and you hear someone in the video saying tranquillo, which means to be tranquil, be calm. They are other people there who were saying, we're trying to be very strong. This is very strong right now and they say, yes, it is. I can't believe it. Ma'am, how are you? We are scared, very scared. Someone is yelling pay attention, pay attention and then they say, well you saw it. We saw it all. We saw it all. My mom is worried, isn't she? And then someone else says be careful, be careful with the downed power lines. Again, this video is just into CNN, new video as this earthquake unfolded in Chile. This is from Tera, a network that we have dealings with in Chile.
I want to tell you that a special "LARRY KING Live" is about to start in just a few moments. We're going to see you back here at 10:00 p.m. Eastern. They will have an exclusive with six members of Congress who are retiring. Why are they doing it? Maybe they think our government is broken.
I'm Don Lemon at the CNN world headquarters in Atlanta. Again, see you back here at 10:00 p.m. Eastern.
Meantime a special edition of "LARRY KING LIVE" starts right now.