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The Spill: Sniffing Out COVID

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Coronavirus Sniffer Dogs in Training

Man’s best friend can play fetch, protect your home, take you on walks, and now maybe even detect Coronavirus. Service dogs are well-known to help people with conditions such as blindness and even sadness. Some have been trained to detect when their owners are about to have a seizure. Claire Guest is the co-founder of Medical Detection Dogs in England, where they are starting a trial to see if the dogs can detect the virus.

Six dogs are being tested: Asher, Digby, Jasper, Norman, Star, and Storm. Socks, stockings, and face masks worn by health staff will be sent for the animals to sniff in a test. The trainers expect to get about 3,200 samples. “At the moment, we are cutting up tiny strands of a tennis ball and then touching the strands with a piece of paper and hiding the paper, and they are able to find it,” Guest said. “They are incredibly skilled.”

Only the virus is new to Dr. Guest, who has trained dogs to scent out cancer, malaria, and Parkinson’s disease. She began training dogs to detect cancer in 2002 and then set up the charity group in 2008.

Once the dogs are trained, the group thinks they can test about 250 people per hour. They hope to take the dogs to airports to check travelers.

President Trump Threatens Nevada Over Mail-In Votes

The 2020 presidential election is coming soon. In November, Americans will vote for the next president. The Coronavirus pandemic has changed the way voting may be done this year – and the president is not happy. Trump is thinking about suing one state for trying to go from in-person voting to mail-in ballots.

Voter fraud is a worry for many Americans. There have been cases where dead people have cast votes, and many ballots have been sent in from the same person. Some say that mail-in voting makes mistakes and even fraud more likely in the election.

Nevada recently switched to mail-in voting. President Trump was not happy and said he could sue the state to stop them.

In the past few decades, U.S. Mail has been having money troubles. Part of this is due to the internet and email, as well as FedEx and UPS deliveries taking away business. Postmaster General Louis DeJoy said he was worried that they would not be able to deliver the ballots in time for the election.

Mr. Trump does not oppose absentee voters using the mail because those voters have to get approved first.

Boats Gatecrash SpaceX Landing

It was the first of its kind; a spaceship made by civilians taking American astronauts to the space station. Some people wanted an up-close view of the landing.

When astronauts Bob Behnken and Doug Hurley from the SpaceX Crew Dragon Endeavour splashed into the sea off the coast of Pensacola, Florida, they were not expecting to be met by boatloads of people with cameras. But that is exactly what happened.

“That was not what we were anticipating,” said NASA Administrator Jim Bridenstine. “After they landed, the boats just came in. We need to do a better job next time for sure.” Some of the boaters were able to get fairly close to the floating capsule.

The U.S. Coast Guard had cleared the landing zone earlier, making sure there were no obstacles – like people in boats – that might get in the way of the splashdown, but spectators still found a way to get a closeup view of the SpaceX ship.

Other than the friendly party crashers, the SpaceX mission was a success. It was the first test of the spacecraft using humans to travel to the international space station.

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