Some of the top local and national stories we touched on during this April 4 edition of "Gulf Coast Mornings with Kelly Bennett and Uncle Henry":
Efforts continued overnight to knock down a wildfire in Jackson County that had burned more than 500 acres before nightfall last night. By that time, forestry officials said only about 50-percent of the blaze had been contained. WLOX-TV reports the blaze erupted in the area of a believed prescribed-burn near Larue and Double Still roads. The fire, said to be threatening homes in the area, was scorching both private property and U.S. forest land.
Governor Phil Bryant is pointing the finger of blame for severe flooding in the Mississippi Delta on the failure of the EPA to install backwater pumps more than a decade ago. He and members of MEMA, FEMA and the Mississippi Army National Guard took an aerial tour yesterday of flooding that, thus far, has resulted in eleven counties being declared federal disaster areas. More than eleven-hundred homes were impacted and damage is estimated at 30-million-dollars. Bryant says upwards of a half-million-acres are still underwater, a sizeable portion of it agricultural in nature.
Police don't suspect foul play in the case of a man who went missing over the weekend while walking his dog. Bryan Daughtrey's body was found Tuesday afternoon in a wooded area behind the Jeff Davis Campus of MGCCC.
A week from tomorrow, the official Spring Break holiday weekend begins in Biloxi. City officials are saying the traffic plan will mirror the same one used last year and for all large-scale events involving heavy traffic. It involves using a ton of orange cones along U.S. 90, restricting east and westbound traffic to the right lane of the highway. That'll leave the left lanes open for use by ambulances and other emergency vehicles.
Is multi-tasking making you fat? A new study found that media multi-tasking – switching between your phone, watch, tablet, laptop, TV and more – is linked to a risk of obesity. Researchers from Rice University say that mindless switching between devices makes you more susceptible to food temptations and a lack of self-control -- which could contribute to weight gain. (News.Rice.edu)
How much coffee do you drink a day? According to research, the average American drinks 3 cups of coffee a day. Drink more than that? The FDA recommends no more than four to five cups a day for the average healthy adult. More than that could cause things like anxiety, increased heart rate and trouble sleeping. (Business Insider)
Speaking of coffee … We like it. We like it a lot. And we’re willing to pay for it. According to data from the National Coffee Association, the number of Americans drinking at least one cup of coffee a day is the highest it’s been in six years. And it’s not just a cup o’ regular joe that people are drinking. Last year saw the biggest jump in espresso-based drinks, with 24 percent said they had had an espresso drink in the last day. Specialty coffees, like lattes and cappuccinos ordered from coffee shops, grew by 5 percent in the last year … while consumption of regular coffee dropped by 3 percent.
And bring on the cold brew … Total U.S. retail sales of cold brew coffee grew 460% from 2015 to 2017 alone. (Market Watch)
A guard at a privately operated prison in Holly Springs was seriously injured last night after being attacked by an inmate. The guard was airlifted to a hospital in Memphis and is reported to be in stable condition. The attack came after several inmates set fires at the Marshall County Correctional Facility which is now on lockdown.
NASA is narrowing down its search for the best design for homes in outer space. The finalists have been named for the latest phase of the space agency's 3D-Printed Habitat Challenge, where teams compete to design shelters that are suitable for the Moon, Mars and maybe other planetary settlements. For this phase, eleven-teams each created full-scale designs. First place in this phase went to New-York based team SEArch+/Apis Cor for their twisted structure that includes small holes to let in natural light. The next round of the competition is scheduled for next month with the finalists printing 3D-scale models of their designs, in the hope of winning an 800 thousand dollar prize.