news

News in 5: Woman gives birth alone at home during Hurricane Irma; Olivia Newton-John on fighting cancer.

1. Woman forced to deliver baby at home after rescuers couldn’t respond in hurricane.

Irma hits Florida. Image via Getty.

A woman in the hurricane-ravaged US has been forced to deliver her own baby as it was too dangerous for emergency workers to respond to her call.

She went into labour at home alone in Little Haiti, Miami, Florida as Hurricane Irma hit. She called paramedics, who were unable to respond during the wild weather conditions, and they talked her through the birth.

"We weren’t able to respond. So she delivered the placenta, also. Dispatch told her how to tie it off," Assistant Fire Chief Eloy Garcia told Miami Herald. "We made contact with the assistant medical director here. Talked things through."

The mother and her newborn daughter were taken to hospital once weather conditions calmed down. They are now "stable" and at home.

2. Winds of 195km/h slam Florida as Hurricane Irma hits.

ADVERTISEMENT

Hurricane Irma has lost some strength as it lashes southern Florida, but forecasts warn it will remain a powerful storm as it floods Miami streets and knocks out power to about 1.8 million homes and businesses.

The National Hurricane Center said the storm had maximum sustained winds of 195km/h, dropping it to a Category three, the midpoint of the five-step Saffir-Simpson scale.

Irma has been one of the most powerful hurricanes ever seen in the Atlantic, killing 28 people in the Caribbean and pummelling Cuba with 11m waves on Sunday.

Some 6.5 million people, about a third of the state's population, have been ordered to evacuate southern Florida and the region's large population of elderly residents posed a severe test for the emergency shelters.

"There is a serious threat of significant storm surge flooding along the entire west coast of Florida," Governor Rick Scott told a press conference. "This is a life-threatening situation."

3. Olivia Newton-John remains positive while battling cancer.

Australian actress Olivia Newton-John is staying positive while receiving treatment for cancer, telling 60 Minutes she's "sure she'll get through it".

The 68-year-old Grease star was first diagnosed with breast cancer in 1992, just days after her father's death. She received eight months of treatment and remained in remission until four months ago, when she announced the cancer had metastasised in her lower spine.

"I've had, and am having, an amazing life. So, I have no complaints, I really don't," she told 60 Minutes. "Everyone goes through something, you know. We all have something we need to go through in life and this has been my challenge."

She said she never asks about her prognosis, and tries to stay away from statistics on survival rate. "I don't read into that. I am just going to be healthy and I'm going to work towards being healthy. And that's the way I see it," she said.

Finally, she spoke about the important of medicinal marijuana in helping to alleviate her pain.

"It's been a maligned plant all these years and it really is a magical, miracle plant. It’s kind of a no brainer. It's compassionate. It's kind. It's what should be available for everybody to use."

4. Man drowns trying to save kids from rip.

ADVERTISEMENT

A Victorian man has drowned trying to help four children in trouble in the surf at Wollongong City Beach.

The father of the children pulled his two younger children to shore without assistance, however the two older children aged 10 and 12 got caught in a rip during a trip to the beach on Sunday afternoon.

An off-duty paramedic at the beach pulled the 10-year-old boy to shore, while another man, 32, reached the older boy, but then got into trouble himself.

A surfer reached the pair and got the 12-year-old boy towards shore, but the 32-year-old man was swept out to sea. He was pulled from the water by police and given CPR but died in hospital.

5. Record-breaking numbers at Sydney marriage equality rally.

ADVERTISEMENT

A record number of LGBTIQ supporters have filled central Sydney in support of same-sex marriage.

Tens of thousands of people, including federal Opposition Leader Bill Shorten, deputy Tanya Plibersek and a "rainbow coalition of politics", crowded around Town Hall on Sunday afternoon.

"We've got one last mountain to climb before we make marriage equality a reality, let's climb it together today," Mr Shorten told the rainbow-clad crowd.

He apologised to LGBTIQ Australians for "all of the hateful and stupid things which have been said and are going to be said until we win marriage equality".

Both Mr Shorten and the Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull have vowed to vote 'yes' in the upcoming postal survey on the issue.

6. Australian nurse killed in a London attack honoured by university.

Kirsty Boden died as she tried to help others in the London Bridge terror attack. Now a nursing scholarship in her name will help others carry on her legacy of "loving care".

Ms Boden, 28, was dubbed the Angel of London Bridge after she was killed by terrorists as she tried to help others injured in the June attack.

The South Australian nurse did not hesitate to help after three attackers rammed a van into pedestrians on London Bridge then stabbed revellers in nearby bars,.

Eight people were killed, including Ms Boden and another Australian, 21-year-old Queensland woman Sara Zelenak.

The scholarship, announced in London by Flinders University and the South Australian government, will award two nursing students $10,000 each to help with their studies.

ADVERTISEMENT

7. Cure for osteoarthritis in the pipeline.

A decades-old drug could be a potential cure for osteoarthritis, which afflicts millions of Australians and costs the health system over a billion dollars a year.

Pentosan Polysulfate Sodium - used to treat blood clots and cystitis for 60 years - has successfully been tested on a small number of patients who have advanced osteoarthritis.

It worked so well for a 70-year-old Adelaide woman her pain score went from eight out of 10 to zero in a matter of weeks. Her case study will be published in the BMC Musculoskeletal Disorders journal.

The former horse rider had swollen knee joints associated with bone marrow edema lesions, considered to be the root cause of pain in advanced osteoarthritis. She suffered excruciating pain that couldn't be relieved by over-the-counter painkillers.

"I was like an invalid; it was very depressing," she said.

She was treated with PPS injections twice a week for three weeks by her doctor and "the pain relief was almost immediate," she said. Subsequent MRI scans showed the bone marrow edema lesions had totally disappeared.

For more of Monday's news:

Jason and Sarah received The Block's lowest ever score. This is why they "gave up".

To enter the world, baby Haisley had to survive the unimaginable.

00:00 / ???