tv NBC Nightly News With Lester Holt NBC October 18, 2019 5:30pm-6:00pm PDT
news. >> we will be back at 6:00. see you then. breaking news tonight, millions bracing for impact tropical storm nestor gaining strength speeding toward the gulf coast and fears of life threatening storm surge. heavy rain lashing the coast. fears of life-threatening storm surge. when and where will it hit? al roker with the track. explosive messages boeing pilots raisin concerns about the 737 max years before two fatal crashes. why did the company wait months to reveal them did it mislead the faa? the white house in damage control, president trump defending his top aide that admit q and walked back. what the president is saying tonight. the gun arsenal.
seized from the suspected leader of a neo-gnats group, authorities saying they likely prevented a massacre. >> this is a hate-filled human being but unfortunately, one who possesses really alarming numbers of weapons. >> why the man isn't facing charges the major health alert, johnson & johnson recalling tens of thousands of containers of baby powder after traces of asbestos is found. what you need to know. and out of this world. the two female american astronauts making history in space. >> announcer: this is "nbc nightly news" with lester holt. good evening, everyone we're tracking tropical storm nester tonight expected to gain strength in the gulf of mexico this evening as it bears down in the florida panhandle. landfall is expected to bring dangerous storm surge early tomorrow in places bearing the scars of last year's hurricane michael. right now tropical storm warnings are posted for the florida panhandle. morgan chesky is there with the rush to get ready.
>> reporter: tonight in the florida panhandle, bracing for impact tropical storm nesto launching a wave of last-minute preps. many areas still limping from hurricane michael. the category five storm that nearly wiped mexico beach, florida, off the map >> we're crippled up we don't show it. >> reporter: at his hardware store bearing the scars, he says his community isn't giving up. >> we'll stay here and build back it will take a little longer, but that's okay. >> reporter: the weather also a concern in new orleans where officials postponed a controlled demolition of the cranes at the construction site where a building collapsed. in florida for those who survived michael, the incoming storm yet another challenge they are ready for. >> we're not going to let ourselves be forgotten.as a strong community again. >> reporter: tonight storm surge remains a serious concern but nothinkeell
overhead where we're standing. >> thanks. let's get the latest track on this fast-moving storm from al roker where it is headed >> reporter: even though it feels like fall throughout much of the country, we have the tricycles nestor, 280 mile southwest of florida and 60 mile per hour winds. it's moving fast landfall panama city sometime saturday morning and continues off cape hattera sometime sunday afternoon. what we look for, storm surge from two to five feet from apalachicola to clearwater, and rainfall amounts from three to five inches. if there is a silver lining, there is drought throughout the southeast and this should help with it. lester >> al, thanks very much. also developing tonight, startling revelations involving the boeing 737 max messages revealed from a boeing test pilot about problems he encountered in a max
similarity long before two crashes. late details >> reporter: two deadly crashes overseas 346 died, and tonight more evidence that boeing was aware of the problem with the anti stall system on the 737 max and didn't tell the faa or airlines that fly the plane. in these messages from 2016 obtained by nbc news, two test pilots working for boeing write about problems with the mcas system two years before the first fatal crash in indonesia. it's running rampant in the simo me, writes the chief pilot. the other pilot responds, oh, great, that means we have to update the trim description. he writes, so i basically lied to the regulators unknowingly. he calls what happened in the simulator egregious. in statement to the "wall street journal," forkner's attorney writes, "if you read the whol chat, it's obvious there is no lie and the simulator program was not operating
properly." based on what he was told, mark thought the plane was safe and the simulator would be fixed. tonight, the faa says it found the messages concerning, adding it's also disappointed that boeing did not bring this document to its attention immediately upon its discovery boeing tells nbc news, "we will continue to follow the direction of the faa and other global regulators as we work to safely return the 737 max to service. last month, the new faa chief exclusively spoke with nbc's tom costello. >> i'm not going to sign off on the aircraft until i would fly it myself or put my own family on it. >> reporter: no u.s. airline wish flying the max until january at the earliest. stephanie gosk, nbc news, new york authorities are investigating why a commuter plane with 42 people including a high school swim team went off the runway and crashed in one of alaska's islands one person died and 11 others were hurt the plane operated by peninsula airways came to stop feet from the water.
in northern syria, alls, ts are pulling back from the border driven out after a cease-fire drill with turkey, but there is still new violence underway tonight. >> reporter: small skirmishes today after a five-day cease-fire between turkey and kurdish fighters in sawyer which for now is largely holding but turkey's president erdogan tonight warn if kurdish fighters don't pull back, turkey will resume its assault. while president trump is already taking a victory lap. >> we've had tremendous success, i think, over the last couple days. a little bit unconventional but the kurds are happy about it president erdogan in turkey is satisfied with it, and we are at a very strong position. >> reporter: but the kurds in northern syria and the u.s. troops who have been fighting with them and protecting them for
nearly five years are deeply worried that president trump has allowed turkey to unleash a campaign of ethnic cleansing against the kurds because tonight, we're learning more details about what turkey plans to do with the so-called safe zone that president trump ceded to turkey in exchange for stopping the assaults erdogan today said he plans to settle one to two million syrian refugees in the new zone the kurds worry as soon as the flood gates are open to the mostly arab refugees, there will be a scramble for land and killings, ethnic cleansing and civil war. already human rights groups accused turkey and militias of possible war crimes including targeting kurdish civilians. >> richard engel in syria tonight, thanks. the s responding to the uproar over an explosive admission about ukraine by the acting white house chief of staff
nbc's kristen welker has more on that. >> reporter: tonight, the trump administration in damage control mode with backlash growing after acting chief of staff mick mulvane under cut the president's denials of a quid pro quo with ukraine. >> do you want to clarify what he said. >> i think he clarified it. >> reporter: on thursday saying the president wanted ukraine's help with a justice department investigation before he would give military aid. >> the look back to what happened in 2016 certainly was part of the thing that he was worried about in corruption with that nation that is absolutely appropriate. >> reporter: later, backtracking that despite what he said on camera, quote, there was absolutely no quid pro quo between ukrainian military aid and any investigation into the 2016 election. but tonight one trum ally telling nbc news, it's an unmitigated disaster and democrats are seizing on it. >> things have j >> mick mulvaney was either lying then or now. i think he's lying now.
>> reporter: republicans on defense. >> i think what he clarified in his statement was very clear. i watched in all the transcripts of what people have been saying inside the investigation, vol kerr and others, there was no quid pro quo. >> reporter: he raised ethical concerns in 2015 about hunter biden working for a ukrainian company while his father was vice president lester >> kristen, thank you. extraordinary comments about the president tonight from two retired four-star military men one of them his former defense secretary. andrea mitchell has that story. >> reporter: retired four-star general former defense secretary james mattis all dressed up for a charity roast making light of the president's attack he was the world's mostered that y donald trump because streep after overrated he also calledyl actress. so i guess i'm the meryl streep of generals.
>> reporter: the general that quit last year to protest the plan to get out of syria also mocking the president's draft deferment for bone spurs during vietnam. >> i earned my spurs on the battlefield donald trump earne his spurs in the letter from a doctor. trump lashing out without u.s. troops isis will come back. >> isis will resurge it's absolutely a given that they will come back. >> reporter: now another four-star, admiral credited with taking down osama bin laden. welcome mccraven writing, "our republic is under attack by the president. >> i've had the privilege of working with a lot of presidents, and i didn't alway agree with the presidents but believed they were men of principle i don't see that in this president. >> reporter: as a retired officer, mattis strongly the president should not be abandoning america's allies lester ts e seattle say they prevented amassacre afterg
a gun arsenal from a suspected leader of a neo-nazi group though the man is not charged with a crime here is nbc's pete williams. >> reporter: police in washington state took these guns and impeachmentless on and othe components away from a man they say is the local leader of a group called the autumn wafin court documents say a seattle area man caleb cole posed a risk to public safety based on what investigators said was his participation in hate camps and firearms camps for what he believed is a race war. >> this is a hate-filled human being but one that possesses really alarming numbers of weapons. >> reporter: but cole is not charged with any crime. instea prosecutors filed a lawsuit against him invoking the state's red flag law that allows authorities to take guns away for up to a year from people
deemed to be a risk to themselves or others 14 other states have similar laws and the fbi is using them to go after people who are considered dangerous. no comment from cole. pete williams, nbc news, washington tonight mexico's presiden is defending the aborted mission to capture the son of a notorious imprisoned drug king "el chapo" after a deadly gun battle broke out in the streets. we get more from miguel almaguer. >> reporter: the fire fight exploded on the streets in the city. mexican military out gunned by a drug cartel with families caught in the crossfire. just before the bloodshed spilled into the streets, mexico commandos stormed a home cornering guzman lopez, the son of "el chapo" but the 28-year-old, one of the heirs of the sinaloa cartel, would soon be released. as authorities took on a relentless counter attack resembling a
war zone, cartel members in black masks fired machine guns onto the street. people running for cover as vehicles erupted in flames. dozens of inmates escaping in the chaos. forcing mexican security forces to retreat. mexico's president says the capture of a criminal cannot be worth more than people's lives this decision was made to protect citizens. tonight at least eight are dead and dozens injured and "el chapo's" son is free, amid a fire-fight that turned city streets into a battle field. miguel almaguer, nbc news. a major health alert tonight. johnson & johnson recalling over 30,000 bottles of baby powder after the fda found trace amounts of asbestos in a sample test oumpansays stop using it johnson & johnson faces over 15,000 lawsuits related to its baby powders
containing talc but the company maintains those products are safe. the maker of zantec said it was recalling the popular heartburn drug a month afte tests showed low levels of a cancer-causing impurity this after several makers pulled products as did major drugstore chains. to a critical shortage of a life-saving drug for children with cancer with supplies running short, doctors have warned they may consider rationing it. blayne alexander tells us more. >> reporter: hailey and blake allen are fighting for their daughter's life. her rare cancer diagnosis only made worse with news baby hailey might not get a critical drug she needs. >> vin christine - >> vincristine keeps the cancer from multiplying. >> reporter: the fda
declared a shortage of vincristine. the drug was only made by two companies, one of them ended production in july the fda says they cited a business decisions. in a statement, they say at the time there was no indication of a possibility of a shortage adding we are looking at any and all options to contribute to the solution now. pfizer now the only manufacturer of the drug saying in a letter today, it's expediting shipments we expect to fully meet market need in late october even so, pediatric cancer doctors say the shortage exposes a larger problem. >> if you only have one supplier for a critical medicine in this country, and it's a manufacturing facility that's over an incredibly fragile system. >> we don't want to bury our child our first born, our lyhild, we do not >> reporter: parents left hoping for enough medicine to give their daughter a fighting chance blayne alexander, nbc
next for us tonight, the revolution in home delivery soaring to new heights with the first use of commercial drones dropping orders right at your doorstep here is katy beck. >> reporter: it's a sneak peek into the future. >> the aircraft stays at about 23 feet and lowers down the hook. >> reporter: at a small virginia town, a first for commercial aviation >> will ascends back up and fly off to the customer >> reporter: that is so cool. the drones launched by wing, a sister company of google and the only approved commercial drone delivery service in the country from what they call the nest, ten-pound drones carrying small packages, flying 60 miles an hour,
hovering over homes to lower goods. >> any question that drone delivery is the way of the future? >> we don't think so. >> reporter: for now, wing delivers in a 12-mile radius, products from walgreens, fedex and gifts from a local store. >> we have great little package chocolates we'll be able to offer. >> reporter: the faa expects the field of drone delivery to grow. >> these new operators are developing a safety culture just like you would see at any airline. >> reporter: an industry already taking off amazon has a pending application, and u.p.s. i delivering on a medical campus after the first order, mission accomplished. >> see what we got. >> here we go. >> reporter: wing and shoppers hoping the sky is the limit catie beck, nbc news, virginia. up next, meghan markle getting personal about her life and speaking out in a way we've never heard before
rarely heard her before about the pressures of being a royal and a new mom. here is kristen dahlgren. >> reporter: tonight meghan markle getting candid in a new documentary. >> any woman when especially whe you're pregnant, you're vulnerable. >> reporter: opening up what it's like to live with all that attention. >> it's a lot. you add this on top of just trying to be a new mom or trying to be a newlywed, it's -- yeah, well, i guess, also thank you for asking because not many people asked if i'm okay but it's a very real thing to be going through behind the scenes. >> reporter: the documentary shot by british network it and set to air on abc follows the couple on their recent tour of africa capturing emotional moments. harry talking about the media attention on his mother princess diana. >> every single time i hear a click and hear a flash, it takes me straight back. it's the worst
reminder of her life, as opposed to the best. >> reporter: the couple sued several british tabloids at the time harry releasin a statement comparing the treatment to megan to that of his mother and the duchess telling the world what's that been like for her. >> would it be really okay, really been a struggle >> yes. >> reporter: kristen dahlgren, nbc news. up next for us tonight, a historic day in space
here is tom costello. >> let me know when you're clear for me to start. >> reporter: traveling at 17,000 miles per hour, it was all business for astronauts jessica meir and christina koch, wearing the red tether replacing a failed power system on the space station. >> i have control of the battery. >> reporter: but today's milestone not lost on either woman. the first all-female space walk ever. >> we called ourselves space sisters because we were together really joined at the hip going through all the classes together. >> reporter: both women part of the astronaut class of 2013 this was koch's fourths space walk, the first for meir, who told u about her childhood dream to be an astronaut three years ago at the nascar training pool in houston. >> since i was 5 years old, yeah. >> reporter: you dreamed of being an astronaut since you were 5. >> yeah, that's when i started saying it so literally is a dream come true. that's what makes it so difficult to believe. >> reporter: both could be among the astronauts to one day return to the moon today twitter lit up in celebration. >> we could have never imagined that our childhood dream would come true and the two
of us would be here together. >> reporter: the >> now that is cei something to celebrate. that's "nightly news." i'm lester holt. have a good night, everyone right now at 6:00, a one-of-a-kind telescope. nasa gives us an exclusive look. plus, it's a popular spot for taggers. they get creative as they look to stop vandals. first the tongue lashing for pg&e following last week's power outages. the men and women at the help of pg&e in the hot seat about they handle and fumbled
the power shut-off and how they plan to fix those issues in the future. melissa colorado joins us with more. >> reporter: they admitted they dropped the ball. two days, not five days, that needs to be the new benchmark. the ceo of pg&e said these power shut-offs are going to be painful for the next ten years. the man who runs pg&e apologized for how his company handled last week's shut-off that left 2 million people in the dark. they called and emergency meeting to get to what went wrong. >> to exacerbate the