Truss’ energy deal with Macron a blow to Putin but ‘no guarantee’ of stopping blackouts

Prime Minister Liz Truss and French President Emmanuel Macron have agreed to closely cooperate on energy supply as Russia continues to bleed Europe dry amid the Ukraine war. While this was hailed as an “important step as the West scrambles to end its reliance on Russian fossil fuels, an energy expert told Express.co.uk that there can be no guarantees amid fears of a supply crunch threatening blackouts this winter.

The world leaders made the announcement following a bilateral meeting at the United Nations headquarters in New York this week as western leaders battle to get get the volatile global energy market under control, which remains largely at the mercy of the Russian President.

A Downing Street spokesperson said: “As our people face a difficult winter with huge uncertainty of energy supply and the cost of living, the Prime Minister and President Macron underscored the importance of working together to end reliance on Russian energy and strengthen energy security.”

Ms Truss tweeted following the meeting: “Putin’s economic blackmail cannot and will not succeed.”

While the UK only got four percent of its gas from Russia last year, there have been fears that the country could face blackouts amid soaring prices and strains on supplies in Europe. Meanwhile, France – which normally generates 70 percent of its electricity from nuclear power – has seen output plummet and is also scrambling to keep the lights on this winter.

The agreement between the two nations may be a huge show of force against Putin, but Simon Cran-McGreehin, head of analysis at the Energy and Climate Intelligence Unit, warned that an agreement is no guarantee that supplies will be ample amid a “rough winter”.

He told Express.co.uk: “Increased energy cooperation between the UK and France would be another important tool for helping to maintain energy supplies this winter, but the gas crisis is so severe that there can be no guarantees.

“National Grid and other system operators will get us through the winter, with a mixture of power sources including our renewables that are not limited by fossil fuel supplies, but it might be rough.

“There is, literally, a war going on, and any issues this winter would be a consequence of our dependence on gas being exploited by Russia, and of decisions by the UK and the EU to oppose Russian aggression by getting off gas.”

This comes amid fears that Russia, which has already suspended flows travelling through the major Nord Stream pipeline indefinitely, could cut off the remaining supplies which reach the EU via Ukraine and Turkey.

Bob Seely, a Conservative MP who sits on the influential Foreign Affairs Select Committee, said in July: “There is likely to be an energy emergency in Europe, primarily caused by Germany’s disastrous decisions; first, to shut down its nuclear power stations to appease its obsessively anti-nuclear green lobby, and, second, to become utterly dependent on Russian gas.

“Currently, it seems likely that Putin will squeeze energy supplies further this winter to extract the maximum political pressure in Germany and other EU states that use Russian gas, such as Italy and Hungary. He wants to undermine the coalition in support of Ukraine.”

But as previously seen, gas supply cuts to Europe also have a huge impact on billpayers in the UK due to the integrated nature of the market.

Despite fears that a dependency on Putin could cause damage, Mr Cran-McGreehin told Express.co.uk that the current crisis is “worse than anything envisaged”.

He said: “It’s worth reiterating that this gas crisis is worse than anything that had been envisaged. If you’d asked just a few years ago, no-one would have wanted to pay the price for a system that was ‘gold-plated’ enough to cope with the gas crisis that we’re now experiencing – this gas crisis would have seemed too far-fetched.

“But now that we’re seeing the impacts of fossil fuel chaos, polling shows that people are keen to protect ourselves from this ever happening again – and the best way to do that is by speeding up the transition away from fossil fuels by using energy efficiency and renewables.”

However, despite blackout fears, the Government has previously stressed that this scenario is highly unlikely. A number 10 spokeswoman said last month: “Households, businesses, and industry can be confident they will get the electricity and gas that they need over the winter.

“That’s because we have one of the most reliable and diverse energy systems in the world.”

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  • 1 час, 55 минут назад 04.10.2022Science
    New York will join California in BANNING the sale of new gas cars by 2035

    New York is joining California in banning the sale of new gas vehicles by 2035, but how it plans to charge thousands of electric vehicles in a city that lacks private driveways and convince people to pay at least $20,000 more for a new plug-in still remains a mystery.

    There are just 677 charging stations spread across the five boroughs and although the city is set to add 10,000 curbside chargers by 2030, it may not be enough to power the thousands that will be cruising around by 2030 – 68 percent of all new cars sold this year be electric.

    Along with where people will charge their cars, comes the question of how they will afford one. Nearly 50 percent of residents are deemed middle class and 17.9 percent are low income, leaving just 35 percent of people who have a disposable income to spend thousands of dollars more on a new plug-in vehicle.

    New York, however, offers electric car buyers the Drive Clean Rebate of up to $2,000 for new car purchases or leases, but this still may not be enough to tempt consumers into swapping out a cheaper gas guzzler for a more expensive vehicle.

    The state’s governor, Kathy Hochul, made the announcement on Thursday, ordering automakers to start phasing out gas-powered vehicles to hit specific quotas.

    The ban, which will go into effect by the end of the year, follows California’s plan by setting quotas to reach the goal: 35 percent of new vehicle sales to be zero-emission vehicles in 2026, 68 percent by 2030 and 100 percent by 2035.

    Hochul announced the initiative last year, but had to wait for California to make the first move due to federal regulations.

    California’s action finalizing the Advanced Clean Cars II regulation last month unlocked New York’s ability to adopt the same regulation.

    And the move is New York’s big push into cutting 85 percent of its greenhouse gasses by 2050.

    The 10,000 additional curbside charging stations are the only ones that have been revealed, which would bring the total to just 10,320 five years before the ban is in effect.

    Most of the operating charging stations are found in Manhattan, but this region also has the least amount of electric vehicles.

    Brooklyn has 10,414 registered vehicles and 241 stations, while Manhattan has 3,900 electric vehicles that have access to 320 charging stations.

    Queens has the same number of zero-emission cars as Manhattan, but only provides 43 public charging stations.

    And Staten Island has 32 stations for its 1,276 electric vehicles.

    State officials could just construct tens of thousands of more chargers, but Kenneth Gillingham, economics professor at Yale School for the Environment, told Gothamist: ‘You don’t want to put in the chargers before people are going to be using them.

    ‘People don’t want to buy electric vehicles until the chargers are in.’

    California is also facing such obstacles, but it has the land and private driveways to build off from.

    The west coast state made its ban official in August, but it currently does not have enough charging stations to meet the soon-be demand.

    More than 73,000 public and shared chargers have been installed to date, with an additional 123,000 planned by 2025.

    These numbers fall short of the state’s goal of 250,000 chargers by 54,000 installations.

    Then there is the cost of purchasing a new electric vehicle, which is now averaging about $66,000 – a 13 percent year-over-year increase – compared to the $43,000 for the average gas-powered car.

    According to Kelley Blue Book, the cost of EVs is ‘well above industry average and more aligned with luxury prices versus mainstream prices.’

    During the first half of this year, electric vehicle sales accounted for about 15 percent of California’s new vehicle market.

    A major uncertainty about the policy is how quickly precious minerals, specifically lithium, will be available to produce large amounts of batteries needed to fulfill the 2035 target.

    Laurie Holmes, senior manager of government affairs for Kia, told California officials Thursday that the industry could have difficulty meeting sales targets.

    She urged the state to support incentives for consumers to buy EVs and to help build out a charging system.

    There are 17 other US states that have joined California’s movement that account for about 40 percent of all US new vehicle sales.

  • 1 час, 55 минут назад 04.10.2022Science
    Wild monkeys ‘are disease SUPERSPREADERS of the animal kingdom’, study finds

    Wild macaques are ‘superspreaders’ of diseases like coronaviruses and influenza in the animal kingdom, a new study has revealed.

    Researchers from Anglia Ruskin University mapped how such diseases spread among wildlife populations.

    Their results show that when wild monkeys live in large groups alongside human settlements, they can act as superspreaders.

    The researchers hope the findings could help to identify individual monkeys that are the most sociable and tend to congregate around and interact with humans the most.

    ‘Targeting these with vaccinations or other forms of medical treatment could potentially protect both macaque populations and humans in areas where they live in close proximity,’ the team said in a statement.

    In the study, the team used computer models to simulate how infectious diseases spread between monkeys and humans living in urban areas of South and South-East Asia.

    Dr Krishna Balasubramaniam, lead author of the study, said: ‘COVID-19 has highlighted the importance of understanding infectious disease transmission among wildlife populations in urban and peri-urban areas.

    ‘Population expansion has increased the contact between humans and wildlife, and these human-wildlife interfaces are widely recognised as “hotspots” for the transmission of diseases across a variety of species.’

    The researchers focused on the interactions of 10 separate groups of macaques in northern India, Malaysia, and southern India.

    Behavioural data was fed into computer models to simulate the impact of outbreaks of human diseases such as influenza, coronaviruses, and measles.

    Computer simulations were then run 100,000 times in total across the 10 groups to estimate the vulnerability of the macaque populations to disease outbreaks.

    The results revealed that the size of the outbreak was dependent on the centrality of the macaque first infected.

    For example, if the first macaque infected was better connected, it would lead to a larger outbreak.

    Meanwhile, if the first-infected macaque had great interactions with humans – for example around human-provided foods – the scale of the outbreak was greater.

    ‘Being so closely related to humans, macaques are highly vulnerable to the same diseases that infect people,’ Dr Balasubramaniam said.

    ‘Indeed, previous work by other researchers established that macaques may be infected by human gastrointestinal and respiratory pathogens.

    ‘Here we showed how respiratory pathogens in particular might spread through macaque populations, and specifically how their behaviour might influence such spreading.’

    Based on the findings, the researchers suggest that well-connected macaques could be vaccinated in the future to prevent disease outbreaks.

    ‘As well as being “superspreaders” within their species, these individuals with the most human contact also pose the highest risk for interspecies disease transmission events, either from humans into wildlife, or vice-versa,’ Dr Balasubramaniam concluded.

    ‘These would be the most effective targets for disease control strategies such as vaccination or antimicrobial treatment.’

  • 1 час, 55 минут назад 04.10.2022Science
    Apple’s Tim Cook: VR is ‘not a way to communicate well’ and people can’t even DEFINE the metaverse

    Apple CEO Tim Cook believes that most consumers can’t even define what the metaverse is and was dismissive of the notion that they’d spend their entire lives inside a virtual world.

    ‘I always think it’s important that people understand what something is,’ Cook told the Dutch publication Bright, according to a Google translation. ‘And I’m not really sure the average person can tell you what the metaverse is.’

    The comments come despite the longstanding rumors that Apple is developing its own augmented or virtual reality hardware.

    Cook also expressed skepticism that people will want to spend extended periods of time in VR in the future. ‘[VR is] something you can really immerse yourself in. And that can be used in a good way.’

    ‘But I don’t think you want to live your whole life that way,’ he told Bright. ‘VR is for set periods, but not a way to communicate well.’

    Meta CEO Mark Zuckerberg has a very different take – having rebranded his entire company in a pivot towards helping to build a virtual world and already offering a number of different AR headsets that consumers can purchase.

    According to an internal company plan leaked to The Information, Meta is planning to release four new virtual reality headsets in the next two years – with one having an estimated price tag of $799.

    The California-based company has already spent a whopping $10 billion on its push into the metaverse – an amount that’s more than five times what it paid to purchase the Oculus VR business in 2014.

    The metaverse push is happening at a time when analysts have noted that Meta’s profits are decreasing as user interest in several of its core apps has also declined. In addition, the tech giant has faced an advertising downturn caused in part by Apple’s privacy changes and massive competition for younger users from TikTok.

    Cook’s comments are the latest from a string of tech CEOs to express skepticism about the metaverse.

    Snap CEO Evan Spiegel told the Guardian that the company avoids the term because it’s ‘pretty ambiguous and hypothetical’ and that if you ask a room full of people to define it, all their definitions would be ‘totally different.’

    David Limp, Amazon’s head of devices, recently said that if he asked ‘a few hundred people what they thought the metaverse was, we’d get 205 different answers’ and that there’s no ‘common definition’ of the term.

    The term metaverse originates in Neil Stevenson’s science fiction novel Snow Crash but it’s come to mean an immersive digital reality where people could live, shop, work and enjoy leisure time.

    ‘You’ll be able to hang out with friends, work, play, learn, shop, create and more,’ Meta has said. ‘It’s not necessarily about spending more time online — it’s about making the time you do spend online more meaningful.’

    Meta’s Horizon Worlds is currently a test of its grand metaverse. Currently an app, it includes in-app purchases for creators to sell virtual items and effects within their digital worlds.

    Critics, including people within the tech industry, believe there is a potential dark side to Silicon Valley’s push towards the metaverse.

    ‘It could be used to brainwash whole populations and basically put them under the control of the puppet master,’ Brian Shuster, who has 17 years experience with the metaverse and also created his own digital world called Utherverse, told DailyMail.com in reference to the metaverse.

    ‘I don’t believe Zuck or Facebook will ever come to conclusion they can sacrifice money for the benefit and longevity of humans. The money comes when people are happy or angry, [so you choose] which path you [want to] go down?’ he said.

    Raj Shah, technology analyst for Publicis Sapient, a digital consultancy firm, told the New York Times: ‘It is time for a reality check on Meta’s position for the metaverse. The metaverse is a long way from being profitable or filling the gap in ad revenue after Apple’s policy change.’

    Zuckerberg was forced to change his Horizon Worlds avatar after being widely mocked for the first version, which was panned for amateurish graphics.

    The company has also said that many of the products ultimately used for the metaverse will take 10 to 15 years to develop.

  • 3 часа, 54 минуты назад 03.10.2022Science
    Bill Gates admits that telling people not to eat meat WON’T fix climate change despite past comments

    Bill Gates said climate change won’t be solved by telling people to make radical changes to their lifestyle, such as giving up meat, despite his previous statements saying America and other wealthy countries should move to ‘100% synthetic beef.’

    ‘Anyone who says telling people to stop eating meat or wanting to have a nice house will basically change human desires, I think, that is too difficult,’ he told Bloomberg’s Zero podcast. ‘You can make a case for it, but I don’t think it’s realistic for that to play a central role.’

    However, the Microsoft co-founder previously said the wealthiest countries of the world should switch to ‘100% synthetic beef.’

    ‘You can get used to the taste difference, and the claim is they’re going to make it taste even better over time. Eventually, that green premium is modest enough that you can sort of change the people or use regulation to totally shift the demand,’ Gates told MIT Technology Review in a February 2021 appearance to promote his book ‘How to Avoid a Climate Disaster.’

    Many environmentalists, including Gates, have long touted that moving towards more plant-based eating would put a dent in the climate crisis. However, the truth is different, according to organizations like the Global Food Justice Alliance (GFJA), which says it advocates for ‘nutrient dense diets that support a healthy population and ecosystem.’

    A 2017 analysis listed on GFJA’s website shows that removing all livestock from the U.S. would only lower the country’s greenhouse gas emissions by 2.6%. A separate examination of studies shows that meat substitutes have higher carbon footprints that beef from cattle.

    Gates has touted – and invested in – companies like Beyond Meat, Hampton Creek Foods and Nature’s Fynd. Beyond Meat, which was endorsed by Kim Kardashian in a widely mocked commercial, this year lost $100 million in revenue and seen its stock price drop 74%.

    After a spike in interest driven by fears about meat processing plants in the Covid pandemic’s first year, several Beyond Meat partnerships with brands like McDonald’s and Taco Bell flopped and the company laid off 40 employees.

    In the Bloomberg podcast, Gates discussed his involvement with pushing for the Inflation Reduction Act, which allocated almost $370 billion to help cut carbon emissions.

    ‘I am getting governments involved and this latest bill I was personally involved in a lot of what got written into it and working with key senators in the last month to get it passed,’ he said.

    The world’s fifth-richest person, with an estimated net worth of $101 billion, said we are not innovating enough to curb climate change – and noted that the world’s wealthiest countries only account for about one-third of worldwide emissions.

    ‘Those [remaining] two-thirds of emissions are pretty basic in terms of the calories and shelter and transport and goods being used,’ Gates explained. ‘So the excesses of the rich countries…It may feel Calvinistically appropriate, but I’m looking at what the world has to do to get to zero, not using climate as a moral crusade.’

    Gates has in the past raised eyebrows with some of his investments, while drawing praise for others.

    He’s funded a start-up called Turntide, which builds energy-efficient electric motors, as well as the lithium start-up Mangrove Lithium.

    The philanthropist is also the largest private owner of agricultural land in America, after having quietly purchased at least 242,000 acres of farmland in 18 states – including thousands of acres in Nebraska, Arizona, Arkansas and Louisiana.

    ‘We’re not even trying to make breakthroughs, such as inventing an economic way of making aviation fuel, cement or steel,’ he said. ‘The existing tools only apply to areas like electricity generation and don’t apply to most of the emissions.’

    According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, transportation and industry together account for 52% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the country, with electric power making up an additional 25%.

  • 5 часов, 55 минут назад 03.10.2022Science
    Biotech firm wants to create human embryos from stem cells and raise them in a ‘mechanical womb’

    A biotech firm wants to create human embryos from stem cells for the purpose of harvesting tissues to use in transplants after demonstrating success with mouse embryos that were kept alive in a mechanical womb for days until they developed beating hearts and flowing blood.

    The Israel-based firm, Renewal Bio, has a mission to ‘make humanity younger and healthier’ with the use of stem cell technology that could potentially be used to treat infertility, genetic disorders or extend life in other ways.

    After achieving ground-breaking success with mouse embryos, the results of which were published Monday in the Journal Cell, stem cell biologist Jacob Hanna wants the company he co-founded to replicate the technology in humans.

    In the future, embryonic stem cells could be transferred into an older person to boost their immune system or used to regenerate ovarian cells – although the company says it’s at an early stage and still learning about the technology’s possible applications.

    ‘We view the embryo as the best 3D bio printer,’ Hanna tells MIT Technology Review. ‘It’s the best entity to make organs and proper tissue.’

    Not everyone is on board with Renewal Bio’s work due to the ethical implications, which Hanna is aware of since his company’s website has the most bare-bones information.

    ‘It’s absolutely not necessary, so why would you do it?’ Nicolas Rivron, a stem-cell scientist at the Institute of Molecular Biotechnology in Vienna, tells MIT Technology Review. He argues that scientists should only create ‘the minimal embryonic structure necessary’ to yield cells of interest.

    Scientists are already able to grow certain simple tissues, such as cartilage or bone, but it’s much more challenging to grow complex ones.

    ‘The vision of the company is ‘Can we use these organized embryo entities that have early organs to get cells that can be used for transplantation?’ We view it as perhaps a universal starting point,’ Hanna adds.

    Hanna, who previously demonstrated that he could grow natural mouse embryos outside of a female womb for several says in a mechanical womb, was able to grow look-alike embryos from stem cells in his new work.

    ‘The embryos really look great,’ says Hanna. ‘They are really, really similar to natural embryos.’

    However, fewer than 1 in 100 attempts to mimic a mouse embryo was successful, according to MIT Technology Review, and the embryos that developed for the longest time still eventually had different abnormalities – including heart problems.

    The scientist plans to use his own blood or skin cells, along with those of some volunteers, as a starting point for making synthetic human embryos. Despite the ethical considerations about the creation of life in a test tube, Hanna does not see them as viable.

    ‘We are not trying to make human beings. That is not what we are trying to do.’ Hanna tells MIT Technology Review. ‘To call a day-40 embryo a mini-me is just not true.’

    It’s important to note that a synthetic embryo could not survive beyond the jars of the company’s mechanical womb. Since it doesn’t have a placenta or umbilical cord that’s connected to a mother, it would not survive if transplanted to a uterus.

    ‘The ability to create a synthetic embryo from cells—no egg, no sperm, no uterus—it’s really amazing,’ says Omri Amirav-Drory, who is acting as CEO of the company. ‘We think it can be a massive, transformative platform technology that can be applied to both fertility and longevity.’

  • 9 часов, 54 минуты назад 03.10.2022Science
    How Apple’s iPhone 14 Crash Detection feature works

    Apple’s ‘Crash Detection’ technology that automatically calls for emergency assistance if you’re in a car accident was put to the test for the first time on Sunday, just weeks after the launch of the iPhone 14.

    On Sunday night, six people were killed in a car crash in Lincoln, Nebraska, in what police have described as the ‘worst crash in Lincoln in recent memory.’

    While there were no witnesses to the crash and everyone in the car was either dead or incapacitated, one of the passenger’s iPhone 14 automatically alerted first responders to the crash.

    Here’s how the Crash Detection feature works, and how to activate it on your iPhone or Apple Watch.

    What devices is Crash Detection available on?

    Crash Detection is available on the iPhone 14 and iPhone 14 Pro models with the latest version of iOS.

    It’s also available on the Apple Watch Series 8, Apple Watch SE (2nd generation), and Apple Watch Ultra with the latest version of watchOS.

    How does Crash Detection work?

    Crash Detection automatically detects when the user has been in a severe car accident and calls for emergency assistance if they are unconscious or unable to reach their phone.

    Apple’s latest iPhone models feature a dual-core accelerometer – capable of detecting G-force measurements of up to 256Gs – and a new high dynamic range gyroscope.

    These are used in combination with components in previous iPhone models, like the barometer, which can detect cabin pressure changes, the GPS for additional input for speed changes, and the microphone, which can recognise loud noises typified by severe car crashes.

    Apple has trained its algorithms on over a million hours of real-world driving and crash record data, to be able to accurately detect when an accident has taken place.

    If the user is wearing an Apple Watch, this further improves accuracy.

    What happens if you’re in a crash?

    When a severe car crash is detected, your iPhone or Apple Watch will sound an alarm and display an alert.

    Your iPhone reads the alert, in case you can’t see the screen. If you only have your phone, the screen displays an Emergency Call slider and your phone can call emergency services.

    Your Apple Watch chimes and taps your wrist, and checks in with you on the screen. If you only have your watch, the screen displays an Emergency Call slider. If you have a watch with mobile data or your watch is connected to Wi-Fi, it can call emergency services.

    If you have your iPhone and Apple Watch, the Emergency Call slider only appears on your watch, and the call is connected and the call audio plays from your watch.

    If you’re able to, you can choose to call emergency services or dismiss the alert.

    If you’re unable to respond, your device automatically calls emergency services after a 20-second delay.

    If you’ve added emergency contacts, your device sends a message to share your location and let them know that you’ve been in a severe car crash.

    If you’ve set up your Medical ID, your device displays a Medical ID slider, so that emergency responders can access your medical information.

    How to set up Crash Detection

    Crash Detection is turned on by default for supported iPhone and Apple Watch models.

    However, Apple also recommends that users take two key steps to make sure their device is able to share the information that emergency contacts and emergency responders need.

    Firstly, Apple advises setting up your Medical ID and emergency contacts in the Health app.

    Next, it recommends turning on Location Services for Emergency SOS.

    The new crash detection feature on iPhones 14 alerted police to a tragic wreck on Sunday that left all six young passengers in the vehicle dead.

    Officers say the the black Honda Accord slammed into a tree in Lincoln, Nebraska, in the early hours of the morning.

    Five men died at the scene at around 2.15am, while a 24-year-old woman was left in critical condition and died later at a nearby hospital.

    In the immediate aftermath of the crash, an iPhone 14 belonging to one of the passengers alerted emergency services to the scene.

    The iPhone feature meant first responders were made aware of the incident, despite there being no other witnesses to what police have described as ‘the worst crash in Lincoln in recent memory.’

    The 22-year-old driver has not been named.

    The other victims were one 21-year-old, one 23-year-old and two 22-year-olds – including a man by the name of Jonathan Koch.

    It’s unclear what caused the crash, or where the group was driving when it occurred.

    Brad Bartak told WOWT that the crash happened on his front lawn. His son and daughter ran into his room saying that someone had ‘hit out tree’.

    He and his other neighbors jumped into action, and tried to help before the first responders arrived. ‘I noticed that there was actually a fire coming from the engine… I basically grabbed the garden hose and ran it up to the car and we were dousing it,’ he told the news outlet.

    Emergency responders were working at the scene for at least five hours after they arrived, onlookers said.

    Upon hearing the news of the tragic crash, families and friends gathered at the scene on Bartak’s lawn. KETV reported the scene was littered with shredded tree bark. The local news outlet said skidmarks could be seen along the road leading up to the tree where the car crashed. Officers say the car slammed into the tree, but further details have not yet been revealed.

    Tributes poured in for Koch from those who gathered there. Jonathan’s sister, Kayla Kelley, said: ‘Life is so short. In the blink of an eye, the world is just shattering around you.’ She added: ‘He was the most amazing person you’d ever meet.’

    She described her brother as a man who loved his family, drawing, and to go out and spend time with his friends. He was charismatic and knew no strangers, she said.

    Kelley later posted a tribute to her brother on Facebook: ‘As I’m sitting in your bedroom mustering enough strength to write something so beautiful for you nothing I say will bring you back or show the entire universe just how amazing you are!

    ‘My heart and my families is shattered into a million pieces! We are all beyond devastated, our entire world blew up like a bomb in a blink of an eye,’ she wrote.

    Kaleigh Keown, another of Koch’s sisters, changed her Facebook profile picture to a photograph of her and her brother wearing Nebraska Cornhuskers football jerseys.

    Although the cause of the crash remains under investigation, police explained how they were called after the iPhone detected it had been in a crash and called first responders automatically when the user didn’t react.

    The iPhone 14 features a new sensor with a high-G-force accelerometer that detects when the user has been in a car crash, such as ‘side-impact, rear-end collision, and rollovers.’

    The feature, dubbed ‘crash detection,’ only activates when traveling in a vehicle.

    ‘This is the worst crash in Lincoln in recent memory,’ Lincoln Police Assistant Chief Michon Morrow said. ‘We’ve been trying to think of another accident this bad and we haven’t come up with anything.’

    ‘I’ve been with this department for 25 years and can’t remember anything as horrible. The cause of this accident is going to take us some time to pin down,’ Morrow added.

    ‘We are looking at all possibilities, including alcohol, speed or distracted driving.’

    So far, investigators have not been able to find witnesses to the crash, which happened near 5600 Block of Randolph Street in Lincoln. The vehicle is believed to have been travelling eastbound when it struck the tree.

    The Lincoln Police Department has asked for anyone with additional information or video of the incident to contact the LPD non-emergency number at 402-441-6000 or Crime Stoppers at 402 475-3600.

    Writing on Twitter after the crash, Lincoln Police wrote: ‘Lincoln Police fatality investigators are still working to notify family members and collect evidence in a tragic overnight collision at 56th and Randolph Street. Five men were pronounced deceased. A woman was taken to the hospital in life-threatening condition.’

    In a later update, the force added: ‘Sadly, the woman who was transported to the hospital has succumbed to the injuries she sustained in the crash. This is the worst crash in Lincoln in recent memory. Our hearts are heavy for the victim’s families.’

    The iPhone 14 was released to the US market on September 16, with technology that can detect when users are in a car crash and automatically call emergency services.

    This is thanks to a dual-core accelerometer that can detect G-force measurements when vehicles are hit. However, accelerometers are in most smartphones to detect screen orientation, and the car crash detection capability has been available on Google Pixel phones since 2019.

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