Morning News Briefs: Monday, April 16th, 2018
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Suspected Tornado Sweeps Through Greensboro
One person has died and significant damage has been reported in the aftermath of a tornado that swept through the Greensboro area Sunday afternoon.
At a press conference, city officials said there are thousands without power and many downed trees and power lines, with most of the damage occurring in the eastern part of the city.
The fatality involved a motorist who was hit by a tree at an intersection.
All Guilford County Schools are closed today. Several schools have been damaged, including Hampton Elementary, which officials said had been devastated.
City Manager Jim Westmoreland says Greensboro received over a thousand 911 calls Sunday evening related to the storms.
The city opened an evacuation shelter for those affected at the Glenwood Recreation Center.
Reynolds Recalls 2.6 Million Vuse Vibe E-Cigs
R.J. Reynolds Vapor Company has issued a massive recall of one of its electronic cigarette brands in a move that affects more than two and a half million devices.
The company has issued a safety recall of all of its Vuse Vibe power units.
Consumers told company officials that batteries have malfunctioned and caused them to overheat, creating a fire risk. No injuries have been reported.
On its web site, Reynolds touts Vibe as its most powerful device and says customers can expect it to have a strong battery.
Kay Hagan's Family Accepts Honors While She's In Hospital
Former U.S. Sen. Kay Hagan's family accepted honors on her behalf at a North Carolina Democratic Party event because she was hospitalized with pneumonia.
Hagan had planned to attend Saturday night's annual Democratic "Unity Dinner" in Raleigh.
But party spokesman Robert Howard said in an email Sunday that she was hospitalized with pneumonia and couldn't attend. Howard said she is doing well and should be released in the coming days.
She's also continuing to recover from a brain inflammation condition.
200 Million Eggs Recalled Because Of Salmonella Concerns
More than 200 million eggs from a North Carolina farm have been recalled because of bacterial contamination.
A notice posted on the Food & Drug Administration website Friday says the eggs shipped to restaurants and grocery stores in nine states may be tainted with salmonella. Twenty-two illnesses have been reported.
The eggs were distributed from a farm in eastern North Carolina's Hyde County by Indiana-based Rose Acre Farms.
The notice says the recalled eggs include varieties sold in Food Lion and Walmart stores, and served at Waffle House restaurants.
Court Sees If Church Solar Panels Break Electricity Monopoly
North Carolina's highest court is taking up a case that could force new competition on the state's electricity monopolies.
The state Supreme Court on Tuesday will consider the Utilities Commission's decision to fine clean-energy advocacy group NC WARN for putting solar panels on a church rooftop in Greensboro and then charging it below-market rates for power.
The commission told the group that it was producing electricity illegally and fined the group $60,000. The group said it was acting privately and appealed to the high court.
If the group prevails, it could put new pressure on Duke Energy's monopoly.