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Quick Guide & Transcript: Report cites teen driving distractions, Norovirus strikes the QE2

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(CNN Student News) -- January 26, 2007

Quick Guide

Teens Driving Distracted - Pore over a new study that shows the dangers of driving distractions.

Week in Review - Check out this guide for more details on our Week in Review stories.

Virus Aboard - Explore a luxury liner that recently contained a norovirus outbreak.



DANIELLE ELIAS, CNN STUDENT NEWS ANCHOR: Hello there, and thanks for switching on CNN Student News! From CNN Center, I'm Danielle Elias. A question of safety: Can driver distractions be as dangerous as drinking while on the road? A question of what's right: To take or not to take a grounded ship's cargo? We'll have the story, and your opinions on it. And a question of...cuteness. A new baby scampers around a German zoo. But how big will it get?

First Up: Teens Driving Distracted

ELIAS: Text messaging, putting on makeup, reading, and browsing an mp3 player. What do they all have in common? People do them while operating deadly equipment: Their car. You know drinking and driving can cause crashes. But everyday distractions-- even anger or fatigue --can be just as dangerous between the lanes. Chris Lawrence explores some reasons why researchers say, traffic accidents are the number-one killer of U.S. teens.


CHRIS LAWRENCE, CNN REPORTER: The class president and the prom king, packed into a car with four other kids heading to the dance. Their 16-year old friend driving is sober, and isn't speeding. But she gets distracted.

DONNA SABET: Somebody asked for a pack of gum, and there was a pack of gum in the driver's seat pocket and she reached for it, and for an instant looked away from the road and lost control of the vehicle.

LAWRENCE: Donna Sabet lost her daughter. Gillian, and her boyfriend, both passengers, died when the car flipped over.

SABET: I loved being her mom. From the moment she was born to the moment she left that night. I loved being her mom. And I miss her so much.

LAWRENCE: A new study of teenage drivers suggests that kind of accident was no accident. State Farm and the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia found that 90% of teens don't drink and drive. But 9 out of 10 have seen passengers distract the driver and drivers using cell phones. More than a third don't wear seat belts consistently.

RAMON HERNANDEZ, FRIEND OF GILLIAN SABET: Most kids think that they're invulnerable.

LAWRENCE: Actually, they're inexperienced -- and according to Jill's brother, easily distracted.

JASON SABET, GILLIAN'S BROTHER: It could be music, it could be cell phones, it could be friends in the back even.

LAWRENCE: So teenage drivers should pay closer attention. Easy for adults to say. But when those drivers are out on the road, what do they see? Men making calls. Women getting ready for work. Everyone eating. And when you're 16, trying to stand up to your friends?

ANDRES VILLALOBOS, FRIEND OF GILLIAN SABET: You never want to be the uncool guy in the group. So you tell someone to buckle up and they're like 'You're not my Dad, don't tell me what to do.'

LAWRENCE: That's why Jill's family and friends have started a website called Journey, encouraging teenage drivers to buckle up and turn down the music and shut off their phones.

JASON: I don't care if it's not cool. I don't care if my friends will bag on me for it. I want to keep people safe and I want to stay alive.

LAWRENCE: And parents, two-thirds of teens surveyed say when it comes to driving, your opinion still matters. Chris Lawrence, CNN, San Clemente, California.



CARL AZUZ, CNN STUDENT NEWS: Today's Shoutout goes out to Ms. Neal's class at Loranger Middle School in Loranger, Louisiana. Along with the vice president, who sits behind the president during a State of the Union address? You know what to do! Is it: A) Senate majority leader B) Speaker of the House C) Chief justice of the U.S. D) Secretary of state You've got three seconds--GO! If you watched Tuesday's State of the Union address, you saw Vice President Dick Cheney and Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi seated behind President Bush. That's your answer and that's your Shoutout!

Week in Review

ELIAS: Nancy Pelosi is the first woman ever to hold that job. And President Bush recognized her at the beginning of the speech, saying it was his honor to begin with the words, "Madam Speaker." It was also the first time the president had given an annual message when Democrats controlled both houses of Congress. Now highlighting the speech and more, here's our "Week in Review."


Today's Week in Review brings your class the images of stories that made headlines this week. Included here is a brief description of each topic:

Several candidates from both of the country's major political parties are expressing interest in the presidency. Democratic Sens. Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama have both formed exploratory committees, which could precede their official entries into the 2008 presidential race. Republican Sen. Sam Brownback formally declared his candidacy on January 20, and GOP Congressman Duncan Hunter of California officially jumped into the race Thursday. Meanwhile, former presidential candidate Sen. John Kerry decided against a second run for the presidency.

On Tuesday night, President Bush delivered his first State of the Union address to a Democratic-controlled Congress. He asked lawmakers for patience with his plan to deploy additional troops to Iraq, and he outlined initiatives on immigration, greenhouse gas emissions, Social Security and health insurance coverage. In the days that followed, several Democrats continued to criticize the president's policies, joined in some cases by Republicans. And the Senate Foreign Relations Committee voted 12-9 to formally oppose Bush's plan to send additional troops to the Iraq. But Vice President Dick Cheney said no resolution would affect the White House's decision.

Insurgent and sectarian attacks continued to claim lives in Iraq. At least 100 people were killed on Monday during two separate bombings of Iraqi marketplaces. Subsequent bombings killed dozens of Iraqis throughout the week. Meanwhile, U.S. and Iraqi forces killed at least 30 insurgents in a crackdown on militants on Baghdad's Haifa Street. In the past, the Haifa Street neighborhood has been the site of heated street battles.

Beachgoers swarmed the coast in Devon, England, hoping to take home some cargo from a damaged ship. The vessel MSC Napoli had been intentionally grounded about a mile offshore during a storm. In the days that followed, items like car parts and motorcycles began washing up on shore. Some people took the items for themselves. However, the Receiver of Wreck organization said doing so was effectively theft. Beachgoers were asked to report their findings to the Receiver of Wreck.


Your Opinion: Cargo Ship Aground

ELIAS: Earlier this week, we asked you what you thought of the story about people taking merchandise from an English beach, after the ship that was carrying the goods ran aground off shore. Your response was overwhelmingly critical of the people's actions: Michael B., from Bellbrook, Ohio wrote: "I think it should be illegal to take the stuff from the ship because it didn't belong to them. In my opinion that is stealing!" Mary F., from Spartanburg, South Carolina said: "Our 5th period social studies class said that 'finders keepers' does not apply in this case....they should return what they took." We received many responses from Onekama, Michigan...Like Derek H., who wrote: "I think the people should not be able to take the stuff on the beach because they did not buy it." And he suggested: "...the people should pick up some of the junk and recycle it." But, we did get a few emails that thought the practice was ok. Barnardo, also from Onekama, emailed saying people should be able to take the merchandise because "the owners probably would not return to get it and it would stay unclaimed on the beach." He says, "At least if there was someone to take it and use it, it would not be littering the beach." If you would like to read more emails about this topic, we've posted them at our Web site:

Word to the Wise

AZUZ: A Word to the Wise: norovirus (noun): a highly contagious form of stomach flu that can cause vomiting and diarrhea.

Virus Aboard

ELIAS: Norovirus outbreaks commonly occur in places like hotels, prisons -- and cruise ships. And if you think that by taking a luxury cruise, you'll be safe, consider a recent outbreak on the Queen Elizabeth 2. It's one of the world's most luxurious liners, with 24 world cruises under its hull. Teresa Garcia of affiliate KGO tells us what happened after hundreds on board got sick.


TERESA GARCIA, REPORTER: The Queen Elizabeth II is one of the last great transAtlantic ocean liners. On board are more than 1,600 passengers are journeying on a cruise around the world. But not everyday for everyone.

GARCIA: Arthur Woodstone of Connecticut is one of nearly 300 passengers and crew members who fell ill with Norovirus. The gastrointestinal illness that causes vomiting and diarrhea.

ARTHUR WOODSTONE, ILL PASSENGER: I was one of the martyrs! Twenty-four hours in my cabin in luxury. I won't talk about the details.

GARCIA: The Norovirus outbreak is the first of the year aboard a cruise ship. The Cunard Line, who operate the QE2, says it started just a few days after the ship departed Southampton, England on January 2nd. Passengers say the ship operator took swift action to stop the spread of the highly contagious virus.

PAM WOODSTONE, CRUISE PASSENGER: You have to get out of your cabin while they fumigate the entire thing with this big sign: stay out, stay out!

JOHN CLEARWATER, CRUISE PASSENGER: There were announcements. There were notes under the door. There were letters from the doctor telling you to wash your hands and there were hand-washing stations all over the ship.

GARCIA: Cunard tells ABC 7 that "We are pleased that our efforts to contain the spread of this illness resulted in a significant decrease in the number of cases. Our sanitation program has been developed in coordination with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and includes such measures as thorough disinfection of high-touch surfaces."


Black History Month

ELIAS: Don't forget, next Thursday marks the beginning of Black History Month and we want to know what your school is doing to celebrate the achievements of African Americans! E-mail us by heading to our web site,, and your response could be featured on an upcoming show.

Before We Go

ELIAS:Before we go, kittens, puppies...rhinos? All right, one of these things is not like the other. But it's still kinda cute, at least until it grows up. This is a baby southern white rhino, which a zookeeper said weighed between 120 and 130 pounds at birth. It'll probably fill out to about 5000 pounds. These types of rhinos are native to parts of southern and eastern Africa, though this little guy was born at a zoo in Germany. We're not sure about his citizenship.


ELIAS: But we will be sure to return next week, so please tune in Monday. Until then, Headline News carries you through the weekend.


• Interactive: Who's who in Iraq
• Interactive: Sectarian divide


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