Stuntman Travis Pastrana nails jump over Caesars Palace fountain that Evel Knievel couldn't manage (video inside)

Travis Pastrana has nailed a trio of stunts in Las Vegas in a tribute to late stuntman Even Knievel including one over the Caesars Palace fountain which the late stuntman was injured attempting.

LAS VEGAS, NV - JULY 08:  Travis Pastrana peforms during HISTORY's Live Event "Evel Live" on July 8, 2018 in Las Vegas, Nevada.  (Photo by Neilson Barnard/Getty Images for HISTORY)
Travis Pastrana flies over the iconic fountain. Source: Getty

Pastrana surpassed Knievel's jump over 50 crushed cars, done at the Los Angeles Coliseum in 1973, by clearing 52 cars.

The 34-year-old then beat Knievel’s jump over 14 Greyhound buses, which the late stunt icon accomplished in 1975 at Ohio's Kings Island amusement park, by flying over 16 buses.

Pastrana's then capped "Evel Live," a three-hour telecast on the History Channel, by clearing the fountain at Caesars Palace.

Knievel came up short on his attempt at jumping the fountain, hitting the knuckle just before the landing ramp and losing control. He flew head first over the handlebars and tumbled like a rag doll along the pavement. He crushed his pelvis and fractured several other bones.



Baby squirrels in the US freed from tail tangle

Baby squirrels in the US state of Wisconsin have been freed after their tails became dangerously tangled together.

They were handed in at the Wisconsin Humane Society’s Wildlife Rehabilitation Centre which worked to save the lives of the five young grey squirrels.

They became entangled with grass and plastic strips their mother used to build a nest.

The squirrels were cut free with scissors while under anaesthetic.

"You can imagine how wiggly and unruly this frightened, distressed ball of squirrely energy was, so our first step was to anaesthetise all five of them at the same time," the centre told the BBC.

Then they began unravelling the "Gordon Knot".

"It was impossible to tell whose tail was whose, and we were increasingly concerned because all of them had suffered from varying degrees of tissue damage to their tails caused by circulatory impairment.

"The creatures will soon be free to resume a tangle-free life in the wild," the centre said.

Baby squirrels in Wisconsin have been freed after their tails became dangerously tangled together. Source: rnz.co.nz

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US federal agency admits losing track of 1,488 'vulnerable' migrant children

Twice in less than a year, the US federal government has lost track of nearly 1,500 migrant children after placing them in the homes of sponsors across the country, federal officials have acknowledged.

The Health and Human Services Department recently told Senate staffers that case managers could not find 1,488 children after they made follow-up calls to check on their safety from April through June.

That number represents about 13 per cent of all unaccompanied children the administration moved out of shelters and foster homes during that time.

The agency first disclosed that it had lost track of 1,475 children late last year, as it came under fire at a Senate hearing in April.

Lawmakers had asked HHS officials how they had strengthened child protection policies since it came to light that the agency previously had rolled back safeguards meant to keep Central American children from ending up in the hands of human traffickers.

"The fact that HHS, which placed these unaccompanied minors with sponsors, doesn't know the whereabouts of nearly 1,500 of them is very troubling," Republican Senator Rob Portman of Ohio, the panel's chair, said.

"Many of these kids are vulnerable to trafficking and abuse, and to not take responsibility for their safety is unacceptable."

HHS spokeswoman Caitlin Oakley disputed the notion that the children were "lost".

"Their sponsors, who are usually parents or family members and in all cases have been vetted for criminality and ability to provide for them, simply did not respond or could not be reached when this voluntary call was made," she said in a statement.

Since October 2014, the federal government has placed more than 150,000 unaccompanied minors with parents or other adult sponsors who are expected to care for the children and help them attend school while they seek legal status in immigration court.

Yesterday, members of a Senate subcommittee introduced bipartisan legislation aimed at requiring the agency to take responsibility for the care of migrant children, even when they are no longer in their custody.

An Associated Press investigation found in 2016 that more than two dozen unaccompanied children had been sent to homes where they were sexually assaulted, starved or forced to work for little or no pay.

At the time, many adult sponsors didn't undergo thorough background checks, government officials rarely visited homes and in some cases had no idea that sponsors had taken in several unrelated children, a possible sign of human trafficking.

Since then, HHS has boosted outreach to at-risk children deemed to need extra protection, and last year offered post-placement services to about one-third of unaccompanied minors, according to the Senate Permanent Subcommittee on Investigations.

But advocates say it is hard to know how many minors may be in dangerous conditions, in part because some disappear before social workers can follow up with them and never show up in court.

The legislation comes as the Trump administration faces litigation over its family separation policy at the US-Mexican border, which while it was in effect sent hundreds more children into the HHS system of shelters and foster care.

Some of those children have since been reunited with their families, while others have been placed with sponsors.

Oakley did not respond to questions regarding whether any of the children who the agency lost track of had been separated from their families before they were sent to live with sponsors.

The legislation is aimed at ensuring HHS does more to prevent abuse, runs background checks before placing children with sponsors, and notifies state governments before sending children to those states, the bill's sponsors said.

"The already challenging reality migrant children face is being made even more difficult and, too often, more dangerous," said the panel's top Democrat, Senator Tom Carper of Delaware.

"This simply doesn't have to be the case and, as this legislation demonstrates, the solutions don't have to be partisan."

The White House has accused Democrats and the media of exploiting the photo. Source: US ABC / 1 NEWS

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Former UFC champion Jon Jones to return to the octagon after 15-month doping suspension

Former UFC light heavyweight champion Jon Jones should be eligible to fight by late October after completing a 15-month suspension for a doping violation.

The US Anti-Doping Agency today announced the length of Jones' ban for his second violation of the UFC's anti-doping policy.

The decision means the 31-year-old Jones could even fight at UFC 230 in New York on November 3, if the UFC decides to book his comeback bout on that card.

Jones is widely considered the best pound-for-pound mixed martial artist in the world, but he has repeatedly sabotaged his own career.

He reclaimed the light heavyweight title from Daniel Cormier last year, but the victory was taken away when he tested positive for a steroid metabolite.

Jones also failed an out-of-competition test in 2016.

ANAHEIM, CA - JULY 29:  (L-R) Jon Jones punches Daniel Cormier in their UFC light heavyweight championship bout during the UFC 214 event inside the Honda Center on July 29, 2017 in Anaheim, California. (Photo by Jeff Bottari/Zuffa LLC/Zuffa LLC via Getty Images)
Jon Jones punches Daniel Cormier in their UFC light heavyweight championship bout during the UFC 214 event inside the Honda Centre in Anaheim, California. Source: Getty


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Radio station already playing Christmas songs, but it's to ease dying toddler's pain

A radio station in the US is already playing Christmas music.

But it's not a shameless bid to further commoditise the holiday that some listeners have mistakenly assumed. The station has agreed to play the music months ahead of schedule to help dying toddler Brody Allen.

The two-year-old, who has a rare form of brain cancer, has asked to celebrate the holiday early in case he doesn't make it that long.

Cincinnati, Ohio, radio station WARM 98 has promised to add a little Christmas cheer to its broadcast at least once an hour.

"You should see the Facebook comments that we're getting," radio host Jim Day told news outlet WKRC. "As soon as we explain it, they're like, 'Oh, that's a really good reason', and they're fine with it."

The station has also organised another "Christmas miracle" for tomorrow in which staff and listeners will sing carols in the child's neighbourhood, which is already adorned with decorations. A Christmas parade will take place on Monday.

"Just all over the world he's touched people," said radio station co-host Amanda Orlando, explaining that little Brody has received Christmas cards from as far away as Australia, Lebanon and Japan.

It was a sentiment echoed by Brody's father, who choked back tears earlier this week as he spoke about the community and worldwide effort with a reporter for local station Fox19.

"To have so many people across the world reach out to my son and to tell him, 'Merry Christmas, we're thinking about you and we love you', is just the greatest gift that I as a father could ever give him," Todd Allen said.

Cards can be sent to the family at 9696 Adair Court, Cincinnati, Ohio 45251, USA.

Two-year-old Brody might not make it to the holidays, so a massive effort is underway to push Christmas forward. Source: FOX