News media allowed to join lawsuit over Florida COVID data, judge rules

The current lawsuit was filed Aug. 31 by state Rep. Carlos Guillermo Smith, D-Orlando, and the Florida Center for Government Accountability against the Florida Department of Health and outgoing Surgeon General Scott Rivkees. It seeks to force the state to restart its daily COVID dashboard, halted June 5, which had included detailed information on cases and deaths, including gender, race, ethnicity and county-by-county totals. The dashboard also showed current and cumulative cases in all... Read More

COVID-19 in Florida: Daily average of new cases drops below 10,000, hospitalizations continue decline

Florida on Monday reported 9,022 new COVID-19 cases from the weekend, bringing the daily average below 10,000 for the first time since July 21. There have been more than 3.5 million confirmed cases of COVID-19 since the start of the pandemic, according to data from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. ... Read More

Florida police dial back search for Brian Laundrie day after FBI report Gabby Petito’s body likely found

This photo provided by North Port Police Department, law enforcement officials conduct a search of the vast Carlton Reserve in the Sarasota, Fla., area for Brian Laundrie on Saturday, Sept. 18, 2021. Laundrie is a person of interest in the disappearance of his girlfriend, Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito. (AP) ... Read More

Tropical Storm Peter and Tropical Storm Rose may be short-lived

Peter, which formed early Sunday far east of the Caribbean Sea, will continue to struggle against storm-shredding wind shear and may weaken to a tropical depression by late Wednesday. Before then, however, Peter’s outer bands could produce 1 to 2 inches of rain across parts of the Virgin Islands, as well as Puerto Rico through Tuesday. ... Read More

Gabby Petito disappearance: Florida police searching for Petito’s fiance, Brian Laundrie, at Sarasota nature preserve

This police camera video provided by The Moab Police Department shows Gabrielle “Gabby” Petito talking to a police officer after police pulled over the van she was traveling in with her boyfriend, Brian Laundrie, near the entrance to Arches National Park on Aug. 12, 2021. The couple was pulled over while they were having an emotional fight. Petito was reported missing by her family a month later and is now the subject of a nationwide search. (The Moab Police Department via AP) (AP) ... Read More

Tropical Storm Peter expected to strengthen; forecasters expect Tropical Storm Rose to form from Tropical Depression 17

Forecasters are also watching Tropical Depression 17, located farther east than Peter, which is likely to form into Tropical Storm Rose. The presence of cooler waters and stronger upper-level winds are forecast in the coming days, according to experts. These factors hinder development. ... Read More

4 civilians home safe after SpaceX mission Inspiration4 splashes down off Florida coast

This photo provided by SpaceX shows the passengers of Inspiration4 in the Dragon capsule on their first day in space. They are, from left, Jared Isaacman, Hayley Arceneaux, Chris Sembroski and Sian Proctor. SpaceX got them into a 363-mile orbit following Wednesday night’s launch from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center. That’s 100 miles higher than the International Space Station. (AP) ... Read More