Hurricane Irene left millions of people up and down the East Coast without electricity. Power companies say it could be a week before service is restored everywhere. At Dominion Power in Virginia, repair teams are working 16 hour shifts.
One of the nation's largest gas companies Pacific Gas & Electric is to blame for an explosion that killed eight people and burned down a neighborhood in California's Bay Area last year. That's the unanimous finding of the National Transportation Safety Board. The panel says substandard welds and other safety problems date back to the mid-1950s and that regulation was lax.
Communities on the East Coast planned for hurricane Irene with help from analysts at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. NOAA forecasters use data from federally-funded weather satellites to predict storms. One of those satellite programs is facing deep cuts in the latest round of congressional belt-tightening.
Hurricane Irene is likely to cost billions of dollars. The storm did damage but not as much as some had feared. Will the sales of batteries and flashlights – and then repair costs – give the economy a needed boost?