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Dateline: 1 October 2008

Story #1

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #1: Hurricane Ike Strikes Days after Gustav
Days after Hurricane Gustav devastated the , Hurricane Ike blew through the wreckage, leaving over a million people homeless. While emergency crews began the tremendous of getting relief to the hardest hit areas of Cuba and Haiti, Hurricane Ike towards the US coastline. Citizens of Houston and Galveston, Texas were told they may "face death" if they didn't evacuate. Despite the warnings, 40% of those under evacuation in Texas decided to stay and the hurricane.

Comprehension Questions: Story #1

  1. What happened before Hurricane Ike hit the Caribbean?
  2. Besides Cuba, which country required major relief from the hurricanes?
  3. What did many Americans not do after Hurricane Gustav?
Discussion Question:
Do you think emergency officials should risk their lives to save people even after an evacuation alert?

Story #2

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #2: Fire Shuts Down Channel Tunnel
A hour fire on a freight train bound for France shut down the Channel Tunnel on September 11th. Thirty-two people were safely evacuated and 14 minor injuries. The fire started on a truck that was being transported by the freight train. The travel disruption left about 45, 000 people stranded. ended up sleeping in the train stations, since last minute accommodations could not be found for everyone. Though parts of the Chunnel reopened within a few days, many passengers aboard the Eurostar trains of fumes.

Comprehension Questions: Story #2

  1. What major travel disruption occurred?
  2. How many people lost their lives?
  3. What is the Eurostar?
Discussion Question: A French radio report said: "England is temporarily an island again." Have you ever experienced a frustrating travel delay? How did you deal with it?

Story #3

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #3: Contaminated Milk Kills Babies in China
Contaminated baby milk has been linked to the of at least four infants and the sickness of over 6200 more in China. The sick are developing kidney stones in their urinary tract systems, a condition that is very rare at this. Investigators have found the industrial chemical melamine in milk powder from over 20 . Suspects are accused of adding water and melamine to their products in order to sell more volume. The Sanlu Group, China's largest producer of , is at the heart of the scandal. Melamine has also been found in several other dairy products.

Comprehension Questions: Story #3

  1. Who are the victims in this story?
  2. What chemical was found in the milk powder?
  3. Why is The Sanlu Group mentioned?
Discussion Question: In 2004 fake milk powder containing no nutritional value killed 13 babies in China. Does it surprise you that this could happen again?

Story #4

Pre-Listening Vocabulary

Story #4: US Government Plans Economic Rescue
President Bush in late September that the US government planned on spending billions of dollars to save the economy from crashing. The global stock market became chaotic after the investment giant Lehman Brothers collapsed and Meryl Lynch was bought out by the Bank of America. The government decided to the insurer giant AIG in order to prevent further economic loss. To prevent traders from betting that the shares in these companies would , the Securities and Exchange Commission announced a temporary ban on short-selling company stocks.

Comprehension Questions: Story #4

  1. What is AIG?
  2. Who made this huge announcement?
  3. What is short-selling?
Discussion Question: When giant companies such as AIG go bankrupt there is often a "trickle down effect". What do you think this term means? Has this happened in your native country?

ANSWER CHECK

Story #1

Story #1:Hurricane Ike Strikes Days after Gustav
Days after Hurricane Gustav devastated the Caribbean, Hurricane Ike blew through the wreckage, leaving over a million people homeless. While emergency crews began the tremendous task of getting relief to the hardest hit areas of Cuba and Haiti, Hurricane Ike headed towards the US coastline. Citizens of Houston and Galveston, Texas were told they may "face certain death" if they didn't evacuate. Despite the warnings, 40% of those under evacuation in Texas decided to stay and ride out the hurricane.

Comprehension Answers: Story #1

  1. Before Hurricane Ike hit the Caribbean, Hurricane Gustav went through.
  2. Haiti was also devastated by the hurricanes.
  3. Many Americans did not evacuate their homes despite the severe hurricane warnings.

Story #2

Story #2: Fire Shuts Down Channel Tunnel
A 22 hour fire on a freight train bound for France shut down the Channel Tunnel on September 11th. Thirty-two people were safely evacuated and 14 suffered minor injuries. The fire started on a truck that was being transported by the freight train. The unexpected travel disruption left about 45, 000 people stranded. Thousands ended up sleeping in the train stations, since last minute accommodations could not be found for everyone. Though parts of the Chunnel reopened within a few days, many passengers aboard the Eurostar trains complained of fumes.

Comprehension Answers: Story #2

  1. A fire broke out in the "Chunnel" causing it to close.
  2. 14 people suffered minor injuries, but there were no deaths.
  3. The Eurostar is a passenger train that uses the Channel Tunnel.

Story #3

Story #3: Contaminated Milk Kills Babies in China
Contaminated baby milk has been linked to the death of at least four infants and the sickness of over 6200 more in China. The sick infants are developing kidney stones in their urinary tract systems, a condition that is very rare at this age. Investigators have found the industrial chemical melamine in milk powder from over 20 companies. Suspects are accused of adding water and melamine to their products in order to sell more volume. The Sanlu Group, China's largest producer of milk powder, is at the heart of the scandal. Melamine has also been found in several other dairy products.

Comprehension Answers: Story #3

  1. The victims are babies in China who have been drinking contaminated milk.
  2. The chemical that was added is called melamine.
  3. The Sanlu Group is at the centre of this scandal. They are the largest producer of milk powder in China.

Story #4

Story #4: US Government Plans Economic Rescue
President Bush announced in late September that the US government would be spending billions of tax payers' dollars to save the economy from crashing. The global stock market became chaotic after the investment giant Lehman Brothers collapsed and Meryl Lynch was bought out by the Bank of America. The government decided to rescue the insurer giant AIG in order to prevent further economic loss. To prevent traders from betting that the shares in these companies would fall, the Securities and Exchange Commission announced a temporary ban on short-selling certain company stocks.

Comprehension Answers: Story #4

  1. AIG is a giant insurance company.
  2. President Bush made this announcement.
  3. Short-selling is when stock traders bet against companies that are in major trouble.