NPR logo 'Last Warning' For 400,000 In Pakistani City


'Last Warning' For 400,000 In Pakistani City

Shahdadkot, Pakistan, is submerged on August 22, 2010 Paula Bronstein/Getty Images AsiaPac hide caption

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Paula Bronstein/Getty Images AsiaPac

'We did not expect such a calamity,' says Mir Nadir Ali Magsi, the Sindh provincial food minister, as flood water poured through a breached dam. Workers threw up an earthen berm to fend off flooding around Shahdadkot, Pakistan but it gave way over the weekend. District officials are telling people to get out. quotes officials who say most villages around the city are underwater.

CNN spoke to Shahdadkot resident, Sunat Magsi, who fled with dozens of relatives: 'We have so many children here,' Magsi said, weeping. 'We don't know how we're going to get out. We need help.'

BBC correspondent Jill McGivering got there to find a 'crazy, chaotic scene':

People are pushing in all directions, mostly trying to leave the area. Most of them have carts laden with all of their belongings.There is a small strip of land that is still above ground and on both sides of the road there is nothing but floodwater, which is rising quickly. I asked a man on a brightly-coloured truck full of belongings and people - 16 family members in three generations - why they were fleeing. He said that the water started to approach their village on Saturday. By Sunday morning there was almost five or six feet of water and they decided they had to go.

Flood victims wade near the village of Basira, Punjab province. PEDRO UGARTE/AFP hide caption

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From UN Secretary General Ban Ki Moon's plea to the General Assembly:

Excellencies: the eyes see. The ears hear. Yet, somehow, the mind struggles to grasp the full dimension of this catastrophe. Almost 20 million people need shelter, food and emergency care. That is more than the entire population hit by the Indian Ocean tsunami, the Kashmir earthquake, Cyclone Nargis, and the earthquake in Haiti - combined. At least 160,000 square kilometres of land is under water - an area larger than more than half the countries of the world.



After seven tries, rescuers in Copiapo, Chile located 33 missing miners trapped after a tunnel collapse 17 days ago. A small camera caught video of the men and brought up two notes, one declaring the miners were in good condition in an emergency refuge. Crews are sending food, water and air to the men but not a quick release. It may take four months to safely dig them out. Relatives at the scene wept, shared food and sang the Chilean national anthem, with the chorus: 'Sweet Fatherland, accept the vows with which Chile swore at your altars: Either you'll be the tomb of the free or the refuge against oppression'.


About half a billion eggs are being recalled (if they haven't yet been eaten) by two Iowa egg producers: Wright County Egg of Galt, Iowa and Hillandale Farms. Up to 1,300 people have been sickened with salmonella poisoning and the FDA believes the cases are linked to bad eggs. FDA Commissioner Dr. Margaret  Hamburg told CNN the egg producers didn't follow responsible safety standards.

The FDA explains how to read egg cartons for plant and product codes. FDA/FDA hide caption

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Question Time with the FDA! How can I tell if my eggs have been recalled? Read the numbers on the egg carton. There are two sets of numbers indicating the plant where they were produced and the 'Julian date' which indicates the day they were packed. Both must match with the long list on the FDA's website. Or follow this old maxim: when in doubt, throw it out.