Bus with Chinese-speaking tourists crashes in Utah; 4 dead — A tour bus crashed on a highway running through the red-rock landscape of southern Utah on Friday, killing four people from China and injuring dozens more. The bus from of Southern California rolled onto a guard rail, crushing its roof and ramming the rail’s vertical posts into the cab, Utah Highway Patrol Sgt. Nick Street said. Five passengers remained in critical condition Friday night, and the death toll could rise, he said. All 31 people on board were hurt. Twelve to 15 on board were considered to be in critical condition shortly after the crash, but several of them have since improved, Street said. Not everyone was wearing a seat belt, as is common in tour buses, he said. The crash happened near a highway rest stop a few miles from southern Utah’s Bryce Canyon National Park, an otherworldly landscape of narrow red-rock spires.
Women leave Montana town over border agency lawsuit backlash — A woman who is suing the U.S. Customs and Border Protection after an agent questioned her and a friend for speaking Spanish in a convenience store said Friday the backlash to their lawsuit has forced them to move away from their small Montana city. Ana Suda and her family have been harassed by neighbors, strangers and even schoolchildren in the city of Havre ever since a video of a border agent questioning her and Martha “Mimi” Hernandez was uploaded to YouTube, Suda said in a phone interview with The Associated Press. One version of the video has been viewed more than 123,000 times since February. “I can’t take it anymore,” Suda said. “Our lives are not the same, it’s not the same anymore. These guys destroyed everything we have.”
Hurricane Lorena skirts east coast of Mexico’s Baja — Hurricane Lorena skirted along the east coast of Mexico’s Baja California Peninsula late Friday, prompting new warnings and watches for coastal areas but apparently sparing a direct hit on the resort-studded twin cities of Los Cabos. The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Lorena was a Category 1 storm with maximum sustained winds of 80 mph, and its center was about 40 miles east-southeast of the Baja California Sur state capital, La Paz. It was heading to the north-northwest at 8 mph on a forecast track parallel to the coast through the Sea of Cortez. A hurricane warning was in effect for the peninsula between Santa Rosalia and Puerto Cortes, and a hurricane watch was announced for northern parts of the peninsula and the Mexican mainland from Altata to Bahia. For days, forecasts had predicted likely landfall in or a near miss with Los Cabos, but at the last minute the storm took a path well east of the glitzy resort area. Earlier Friday, residents and tourists in Cabo San Lucas and San Jose del Cabo hunkered down in homes, shelters and hotels amid warnings of damaging winds, flash floods and life-imperiling surf.
American, Australian luminaries gather at White House dinner — A glittering crowd of American and Australian luminaries gathered under the stars in the White House Rose Garden on Friday, resolutely “celebrating” even as serious matters of national security and presidential politics combined to cast a cloud over President Donald Trump. Not long before the president and first lady Melania Trump stepped out of the White House front door and welcomed Australian Prime Minister Scott Morrison and his wife, Jenny, Defense Secretary Mark Esper announced the deployment of additional U.S. troops to the Persian Gulf region in response to a recent attack on the Saudi oil industry. At the same time, a controversy intensified over a conversation Trump had with Ukraine’s new president. Some guests attending just the second state dinner of the Trump administration sought to keep the conversation on the lighter side. “I’m looking forward to celebrating tonight,” Republican Rep. Mark Meadows of North Carolina said when he was asked about the day’s breaking news.
Trudeau’s support holds after apology for wearing brownface — Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau acknowledged Friday that he let down his supporters — and all Canadians of color — by appearing years ago in brownface and blackface. Yet the scandal’s fallout may be limited in a country without the harsh and still-divisive racial history of the neighboring United States. “I hurt people who in many cases consider me an ally,” Trudeau told a news conference. “I let a lot of people down.” Trudeau, 47, is seeking a second term as prime minister in an Oct. 21 election. His leading opponent, Andrew Scheer of the Conservative Party, has assailed him as “not fit to govern” because of the revelations. But key figures in the prime minister’s Liberal Party have stuck by him, including Foreign Minister Chrystia Freeland, who would be a favorite to replace Trudeau as Liberal leader if he lost the election. Many minority Canadians, increasingly active in politics and government, seem ready to forgive Trudeau. “As I have gotten to know Justin, I know these photos do not represent the person he is now, and I know how much he regrets it,” Defense Minister Harjit Sajjan, a Sikh, wrote on Twitter. Nelson Wiseman, a political science professor at the University of Toronto, predicted Trudeau would easily weather the scandal. “Indeed, I think he is drawing some sympathy,” Wiseman said. “This affair is a media bombshell that is bombing with the public.”