Series of earthquakes strike Puerto Rico
On Jan. 7, a 6.4 magnitude earthquake struck the island of Puerto Rico at 4:24 a.m., followed by three aftershocks — chronologically — of 5.6, 5.2 and 4.5 magnitudes. Then, at 7:18 a.m., another quake, followed by an aftershock of a 5.8 magnitude. While casualties and destruction have yet to be fully determined as further investigation takes place, Nelson Torres Yordán, Mayor of Guayanilla stated, “Things are really very tense about what has been going on because this is not normal — so many tremors.”
U.S. cancer death rates on decline
Since 2017, the U.S. has seen the largest single-year decline of cancer deaths at a 2.2% decline, according to the American Cancer Society. Researchers from the voluntary health organization analyzed the latest data on cancer and found that, in 2017, there were only 152 deaths per 100,000 in cancer patients. Additionally, they found that the four cancers with the largest number of declines were lung, breast, prostate and colorectum.
Los Angeles officers suspended after wrongly labeling gang member
More than a dozen Los Angeles police officers were suspended or reassigned on Jan. 7 after a Southern California mother reported her son had been wrongly labeled as a gang member. According to California authorities, this report has unleashed a broader inquiry as to if the police officers involved falsified records.
National Parks quarter dollar features fruit bat
In February, the first new America the Beautiful National Parks quarter dollar will feature a fruit bat, as the National Park in American Samoa — a U.S. territory covering seven South Pacific islands and atolls — has origins in bat conservation. According to the National Park Service’s website, “Fruit bats are one of the more unusual animals in American Samoa, especially for visitors from areas where bats are small and rarely seen.” Also scheduled to be released in the U.S. Virgin Islands for 2020 is a quarter dollar honoring the Salt River Bay National Historic Park and Ecological Preserve.