World record set, more updates from Olympics 2021, Spirit Airlines keeps cancelling flights: 5 Things podcast

·8 min read

On today's episode of the 5 Things podcast: 10 dead after van carrying migrants crashes. The accident is the latest as migrants surge into the country under dangerous conditions. Plus, more funding is on the way to fight wildfires, USA TODAY Sports' Rachel Axon has an update from the Tokyo Olympics, Spirit Airlines keeps cancelling flights and 'The Suicide Squad' hits theaters.

Hit play on the player above to hear the podcast and follow along with the transcript below. This transcript was automatically generated, and then edited for clarity in its current form. There may be some differences between the audio and the text.

Taylor Wilson:

Good morning. I'm Taylor Wilson and this is 5 Things you need to know Thursday, the 5th of August 2021. Today, danger at the border, plus more funding is on the way to fight wildfires, and more.

Taylor Wilson:

Here are some of the top headlines.

  1. President Joe Biden is set to announce an executive order Thursday targeting zero-emissions vehicles for half of all car sales in the US by 2030. The move comes as part of a push to shift to electric vehicles and a broader Biden agenda on climate change.

  2. Australia is pledging more than $800 million to address indigenous disadvantage. The money includes payments to mixed-race children who were taken from their families over decades. Assimilation policies in the country continued into the 1970s.

  3. And some real estate groups are asking a federal court to block enforcement of the latest eviction moratorium. The CDC issued a new 60-day freeze on evictions after the last one expired in July.

Taylor Wilson:

Tragedy hit Texas on Wednesday when an overloaded van crashed killing at least 10 people and injuring 20 others. The incident happened in Encino, a town about a 100 miles from Corpus Christi and 70 miles from the US-Mexico border. Authorities said the van held 29 people who were suspected to be undocumented. The van was designed to hold just 15 passengers, but was overloaded and tipped over when the driver lost control on a curve. Texas Department of Public Safety Sergeant Nathan Brandley.

Nathan Brandley:

They were traveling in the right lane here on 281 northbound and they tried to make a right turn onto the FM road right here and didn't even get over into the turn lane. They were traveling at a speed way to fast to try to maneuver that curve and went into the metal utility pole.

Taylor Wilson:

The identities of the 30 total people in the van are being withheld until relatives can be notified, and no information about the van, including who owned it has been released. There's a surge in migrants crossing the border illegally into the United States. The number of migrants stopped at the border has been rising since last April. The Biden administration continues to expel most single adults and families under a public health order issued by then President Donald Trump at the start of the pandemic, but it's keeping many teens and children in detainment and they've been coming in even larger numbers. Border Patrol took nearly 600 minors on Monday, twice the recent average.

Taylor Wilson:

And as of Sunday, more than 4,000 migrant children were being held by Border Patrol. That includes at least 3000 in custody longer than the 72-hour limit set by a court order. Federal immigration detention in general for minors or adults has risen dramatically during the Biden administration. Since the end of February, the number has more than doubled to nearly 27,000. Biden has been criticized by many on the left for high detention rates, but also on the right for what some say has been encouragement to illegally cross the border. The total number of migrants attempting to cross the border is at its highest level since March of 2019.

Taylor Wilson:

Wildfires aren't stopping anytime soon in the American West. The National Weather Service has issued red flag warnings for parts of California, Nevada and Oregon through Thursday evening. Gusty winds and low humidity are expected in those areas that could cause dry vegetation to burn up quickly. 96 large wildfires across 14 states have burned nearly 3000 square miles according to the National Interagency Fire Center. The Dixie Fire in Northern California remains the largest. As of Wednesday night, it had burned some 275,000 acres and was just 35% contained. The blaze has come as the Biden administration announced more federal funding this week for states to battle wildfires. Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack.

Tom Vilsack:

We have to have more boots on the ground, and I pledge to you and commit to you that will happen. And we need to make sure that our firefighters are better compensated. Governor, that will happen. We need to do a better job and more of forest management to reduce the risk of catastrophic fire. Governor, that's going to happen. Instead of hundreds of millions of dollars, now Congress is talking about billions of dollars, which is what it's going to take. And that will be followed, I hope and believe with a reconciliation bill, which is part of the president's build back better agenda, which will also dedicate resources to greater resiliency in this national treasure that we have in our forest system.

Taylor Wilson:

For all the latest in the West, stay with usatoday.com.

The US men's basketball team will have a chance to play for a gold medal. They overcame a slow start to route Australia 97 to 78 early Thursday, and will play the winner of Slovenia and France in the final. As for what you may have missed Wednesday and other events up on Thursday, here's USA TODAY Sports' Rachel Axon.

Rachel Axon:

US hurdler Sydney McLaughlin has another world record and an Olympic gold to go with it. In her second Olympics, the 21-year-old broke her month-old world record in the 400-meter hurdles, and so did American teammate Dalilah Muhammad who took silver. Also on the track, American Courtney Frerichs took silver in the women's steeplechase, and five-time Olympian Allyson Felix advanced to the final of the 400. With a dominant win over Australia, the US women's basketball team extended its Olympic winning streak to 53 games and they advanced to face Serbia in the semi-finals. In boxing, Richard Torrez won his semi-final bout and he'll face Uzbekistan's Bakhodir Jalolov for the gold medal on Sunday. The women's skateboarding park contest gave us two of the youngest Olympic medalists since 1936, 12-year-old Hiraki Kokona of Japan took silver while 13-year-old Sky Brown of Britain claimed bronze. That'll do it for Wednesday.

Rachel Axon:

Let's take a look at what's in store for Thursday. The Americans have a packed day in track and field. Grant Holloway is favored for gold and could take down the world record in the 110-meter hurdles. Two-time Olympic silver medalist Will Claye will go for gold in the triple jump. And world record holder Ryan Crouser goes for a second consecutive Olympic gold in shot put. And on the sand, April Ross and Alix Klineman face a Swiss duo in their beach volleyball semi-final. Karate competition begins where American Sakura Kokumai will compete in the kata discipline.

Taylor Wilson:

Stay with olympics.usatoday.com for all the latest.

There is no end in sight to Spirit Airlines flight cancellations this week. The airline has canceled more than 1300 flights since Sunday, and that's not stopping on Thursday. The carrier has already canceled 323 Thursday flights or 42% of all of its scheduled routes. That comes after canceling 60% of its operations on Tuesday and Wednesday. In a statement out Wednesday, the airline continued to blame overlapping operational challenges including weather, technology system outages, and staff shortages. Spirit has not been alone with problems the past few days, American Airlines also canceled hundreds of flights earlier in the week, but has since stabilized.

The Suicide Squad is back.

Trailer audio:

Each member is chosen for his or her own completely unique set of abilities.

Taylor Wilson:

The film from Director James Gunn is a soft reboot of the 2016 Suicide Squad film. Gunn came over to the DC Comics Extended Universe after directing Guardians of the Galaxy, part of the rival Marvel Cinematic Universe. Margot Robbie is back as Harley Quinn and Viola Davis returns as Amanda Waller, who creates the squad itself, but there will be plenty of new additions like Idris Elba and John Cena. Their newest assignment heading to the fictional South American island of Corto Maltese. There, the squad fights against militant guerrilla fighters and has to infiltrate an old Nazi stronghold that's been housing a monstrous experiment. You can catch the movie in theaters or streaming on HBO Max.

Taylor Wilson:

Thanks for listening to 5 Things. You can find us wherever you get your audio, including Apple Podcasts, where we ask for five stars and a review if you have a chance. Thanks as always to Shannon Green and Claire Thornton for their great work on the show. 5 Things is part of the USA TODAY Network.

This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Olympics 2021 updates, Spirit Airlines flight cancellations continue: 5 Things podcast