An explosion and fire at an apartment building in Minneapolis left 13 people hospitalized Wednesday. Six are in critical condition, Minneapolis Fire Chief John Fruetel told CNN.
There may still be people inside the building. Fruetel said not everyone has been accounted for.
The odds of getting hit by lightning in any given year are about one in 500,000. You are about 350 times LESS likely to win the Powerball lottery.
Wham!! Wham!! Wham!! The lottery struck at least three lucky victims at the same time Wednesday night with a total jackpot of $448 million, Powerball said on its website.
They've been a couple for two years and are eager to raise two children together. But it wasn't until Thursday that Holli Bartelt and Amy Petrich were allowed to legally wed.
They wasted no time.
They made plans to tie the knot one minute after a law permitting gay marriage went into effect in their home state of Minnesota.
At 12 a.m. Thursday, Minnesota and Rhode Island officially became the latest among 13 states - and the District of Columbia - to allow same-sex marriage. Both states passed applicable laws in May.
Dutch authorities have joined the FBI in conducting criminal investigations into the discovery of needles in six sandwiches aboard four Delta Air Lines flights from Amsterdam to the United States, a military police spokesman in the Netherlands said Tuesday.
One person was injured when he bit into a sandwich containing a needle, Delta and Dutch officials said.
That passenger, James Tonjes, said he thought the object was a toothpick at first.
"When I pulled it out, then I found out it was a needle," he said Tuesday.
Tonjes said he has been placed on medication to prevent HIV.FULL STORY
Federal agents in Minnesota are trying to solve a mystery in hopes of helping some children in a dangerous situation. Agents with Immigration and Customs Enforcement’s Homeland Security Investigations are asking for the public's help in identifying a boy they believe to be in his teens seen in a Web-based video.
Asking for help in this way is unusual according to ICE spokesperson Shawn Neudauer.
“Issuing a public plea is an extraordinary step by ICE’s Homeland Security Investigations warranted by our belief that there may be young people at risk, without the ability to ask for law enforcement’s help," he said.
The child is thought to be between 13 and 19 and possibly has been in either Minnesota or western Wisconsin in the past 18 to 24 months. Agents think that by identifying the teen they will be able to help at least one other child out of a dangerous situation and possibly more.
People with information can contact ICE/HSI on their tip line at 866-347-2423 or on-line at http://www.ice.gov/tips/
Flash flooding in Duluth, Minnesota, has forced residents to evacuate, left homes underwater, destroyed roads and even led to the drownings of at least eight animals at a zoo.
Between 5 and 9 inches of rain fell between Tuesday night and Wednesday morning, sending what looked like raging rivers through Duluth's streets, according to the National Weather Service. Another 2 or 3 inches of rain was still likely to fall.
Duluth residents, who are more used to having snow dumped on them rather than flash floods, said the damage was worse than anything they had ever seen.
"This flooding has been crazy. We have not experienced anything like this in our community," iReporter Kayla Keigley, who said she works as a health care preparedness coordinator, told CNN. "Roads are destroyed. Neighborhoods are underwater. I am in shock and I work in the field of preparedness - this is something I work to 'deal with' daily. Our community is in disbelief."
Workers at the Lake Superior Zoo were in disbelief, too, when they learned at least eight animals drowned there. The toll might still rise, because the workers hadn't yet been able to check all enclosures.
"Sadly the zoo experienced the loss of several animals, among them many of the barnyard residents," Susan Wolniakowski, the zoo's director of guest services, said in a news release. "Due to flooding, the zoo’s polar bear Berlin was able to exit her exhibit. She was darted by the zoo’s vet and is safe in quarantine. At no time did any dangerous animal leave the perimeter fence."
The zoo said the staff still was assessing the situation.
“Obviously, our entire staff is devastated,” the zoo’s director of animal management, Peter Pruett, said.
Editor's note: This post is part of the Overheard on CNN.com series, a regular feature that examines interesting comments and thought-provoking conversations posted by the community.
Rick Santorum was thrice victorious in Tuesday's GOP contests, leading some to wonder if he's gaining momentum. Some, like opinion writer Timothy Stanley, are wondering what real impact he will have. Is Santorum the "coulda, shoulda, woulda" candidate, as Stanley asserts?
We heard from a few Santorum supporters, who said they believe the candidate could be a good option for Republicans.
AngelThree: "He is looking better each primary. He is a devoted family man who appears to have no skeletons in his closet. He is a devout Christian who puts family first. He is a moderate who is not aggressive militarily. He truly cares about our country. He also seems to have a bit of that Kennedy mystique about him that will attract the independent voters. He does not attack the other candidates. Like all humans, he will have faults, but they seem minimal as opposed to the other candidates or the incumbent. I believe he has a chance to serve."
This reader didn't think Santorum's success over Mitt Romney, Ron Paul and Newt Gingrich would carry over in other places.
Evilchicken: "Of course the surge isn't real. States like Colorado, Missouri and Minnesota do not reflect popular opinion anywhere outside of the Midwest. Romney will win ... sadly."
There were quite a few comments from those who are not fans of Santorum, as evidenced by this comment addressed to Stanley. It was the most-liked response.
angie412: "A professor at Oxford, huh? Do you study past speeches of candidates, sir? Mr. I-Want-to-Ban-All-Abortions and Amend-the-Constitution-to-Suit-My-Own-Personal-Religious-Beliefs is the most frightening candidate I've ever seen. I can't believe, given his terrible track record of crazy, that you'd even suggest he's an appropriate candidate in any party for the President of the United States. I'd vote Bush in for a third term before I'd vote for Santorum!"
Some of the posts were about a dissatisfaction with the choices available for Election 2012. FULL POST
Rick Santorum swept the three Republican presidential contests Tuesday in Missouri, Minnesota and Colorado, reshaping the race and raising questions about frontrunner Mitt Romney's ability to attract broad conservative support.
Santorum's trifecta halts front-runner Mitt Romney's momentum after the former Massachusetts governor had won the previous two contests and three of the first five prior to Tuesday.FULL STORY
Police have arrested several people after a "series of fights" at the Mall of America that sent chairs flying and caused after-Christmas shoppers to flee, the mall said Tuesday.
Mall security officers and police in Bloomington, Minnesota made several arrests, the mall said. CNN affiliate KARE reported that nine people have been arrested, including several juveniles. Video posted online showed chairs flying during the melee.
The Mall of America describes itself as the largest retail and entertainment complex in the United States. It says it has more than 520 stores, 50 restaurants and attractions that include an aquarium, flight simulator and a spa for children.FULL STORY
McDonald's and Target dropped an egg supplier this week after an activist group released disturbing video showing what it says shows animal cruelty at three of the company's barns.
The undercover video, released by Mercy for Animals, was allegedly shot between May and August at facilities run by Sparboe Farms in Colorado, Iowa and Minnesota. It shows hens crammed in crowded cages, workers burning beaks and one, trying to shove a bird inside the pocket of a co-worker, apparently for fun. Another worker presses his thumb against the back of a chick's neck until it breaks.
"Regarding the undercover videos, the behavior on tape is disturbing and completely unacceptable. McDonald's wants to assure our customers that we demand humane treatment of animals by our suppliers. We take this responsibility - along with our customers' trust - very seriously. It's important to note that the most alarming actions on video did not occur at Sparboe's Vincent, Iowa, facility that supplies McDonald's. Nonetheless, our extremely high standards for our suppliers prohibit this conduct," McDonald's said in a statement, announcing its decision to cut ties with Sparboe Farms.
Target similarly said it was dropping Sparboe Farms, which describes itself as the fifth-largest shell egg producer and marketer in the United States.FULL STORY
Three things you need to know today.
North Korea defectors: Nine possible North Korean defectors who sailed to Japan were moved to a refugee facility in the southern part of the country Wednesday afternoon, according to government officials.
Japanese Chief Cabinet Secretary Osamu Fujiwara said the nine people would be temporarily held at an immigration facility. Earlier in the day, Fujiwara disputed local reports that they would be sent to South Korea.
The small wooden boat carrying nine men, women and children onboard claiming they were from North Korea was spotted off Japan's western coast Tuesday morning.
A fisherman saw the boat drifting about 25 kilometers (15 miles) off the coast of Noto peninsula of Ishikawa prefecture and reported it to authorities.
It is rare for North Korean defectors to sail to Japan's coast. According to coast guard records, there have been only two other cases.
Minnesota fire: A wildfire in a northeast Minnesota woodland grew by nearly tenfold Tuesday, giving off a pall of smoke that stretched from the Canadian border to southern Wisconsin.
Minnesota Gov. Mark Dayton called in National Guard helicopters to assist firefighters as the Pagami Creek fire, in the remote Superior National Forest, spread from about 11,000 acres on Monday to more than 100,000 by Tuesday afternoon, said Doug Anderson, a spokesman for the firefighting effort.
The blaze started in mid-August after a lightning strike, but jumped about 16 miles eastward on Monday - "unprecedented for northern Minnesota," said Lisa Radosevich-Craig, another spokeswoman for the fire command.
No injuries were reported and no buildings had been destroyed, but 36 homes in the nearby community of Isabella were evacuated as a precaution, she said.
Thailand floods: Heavy rains and flooding have killed at least 87 people in Thailand in recent months, local authorities said.
The deaths occurred between July 29 and September 12, according to the Interior Ministry.
Flooding is still affecting 16 provinces, with Phichit in the north among the hardest-hit.
Twenty-three people died in Phichit province, mostly from drowning, according to officials.
The Minnesota government was forced to shut down Friday for the second time in six years after lawmakers failed to reach a budget agreement before a midnight Thursday deadline.
Gov. Mark Dayton held a news conference to announce an impasse in budget talks two hours before the deadline.
"This is a night of deep sorrow for me," Dayton said.
The governor, a member of the Minnesota Democratic-Farmer-Labor party wants to raise taxes on the wealthiest 1.9% of Minnesotans, as well as cut spending.
Republicans accused the governor of giving up too soon.FULL STORY
The leader of the Nation of Islam predicts that uprisings like those in the Middle East will happen in the United States, according to the Chicago Tribune. He is calling on President Obama not to attack the protesters when they revolt. During an address Sunday, Farrakhan told his followers: “What you are looking at in Tunisia, in Egypt … Libya, in Bahrain … what you see happening there … you’d better prepare because it will be coming to your door.”
Wherever you may be today, there's a good chance you're walking in a winter wonderland. Mostly because it isn't safe to drive or fly.
A winter storm warning remained in effect through Monday afternoon for California's Sierra Nevada mountains, where 5 to 10 feet of snow could accumulate on top of the 9 to 10 feet that fell in some areas Sunday.
Heavy rains prompted the emergency evacuation Monday of nearly 2,000 residents of a flooding Southern California town and the
temporary closure of at least two highways because of mudslides.
Residents near McFarland were being evacuated Monday because of what Fire Department spokesman Sean Collins called "major flooding."
The area has been inundated with rain for four days, with totals ranging as high as 10 inches. The National Weather Service said additional rain is expected in the area through Tuesday.
Heavy snow was snarling air travel in Europe, where hundreds of flights were canceled in London, Paris, Frankfurt and Berlin. And just for good measure, the temperature reached zero degrees Fahrenheit overnight in Northern Ireland.
London's Gatwick Airport was closed until Tuesday morning after 5 cm (2 inches) of snow fell in an hour Monday night, airport officials reported.
Airport staff was working to make stranded passengers "as comfortable as possible," but it advised other travelers to check before they left for the airport to make sure their flights were still scheduled.
Australians may see a white Christmas for the first time in decades after up to 11 inches of snow fell in New South Wales and smaller amounts in Victoria. Aussies traditionally sunbathe on the beach on Christmas.
Even people in Minnesota are complaining about winter weather. Punter Chris Kluwe says the outdoor stadium where his Vikings will play Monday night is unplayable because of cold and ice. Watch out, Chris: The area is under a game-time winter storm warning.
Perhaps worst of all, Lady Gaga had to postpone her Sunday night concert in Paris because her 28 trucks could not get into the city under a snow ban.
How is the weather where you are? Share your photos and video with CNN's iReport.
We asked, you responded. Here are some of the photos of the weather mess in Europe that you sent us.
Minnesota Vikings punter Chris Kluwe doesn't want to play Monday night's outdoor game at TCF Bank Stadium against the Chicago Bears.
"All respect to the people that cleared the field and got it ready, you did an amazing job," Kluwe tweeted Sunday after the team conducted a walk-through at the University of Minnesota's stadium (pictured). "That being said, it's unplayable."
The game was moved to the outdoor venue after the roof collapsed at the Vikings' cozy indoor stadium, the Metrodome, under heavy snow December 12. Last week's Vikings game against the New York Giants was moved to Detroit's Ford Field, which has a roof.
Kluwe tweeted that walking on the TCF Bank Stadium turf was "like walking on concrete. ... I can only hope, however unlikely, that no one gets catstrophically (sic) injured at the trainwreck that's about to take place (Monday) night."
The punter's complaint drew some sharp jabs from other Twitter users.
"Honesty" stared a thief right in the face, and the bandit made off with it anyway.
Perhaps he or she missed the point of John Ilg's sculpture.
The artwork, which features 316 rolled-up dollar bills placed in a wire-mesh frame to spell out H-O-N-E-S-T-Y, was jacked from Normandale Community College this week, according to the Star Tribune in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
Only a set of muddy footprints and a trail of seven rolled-up George Washingtons remained in and near the Bloomington school's fine arts building. There are no suspects, the paper said.
The U.S. Senate should open debate Monday on a tax compromise reached by President Obama and Republicans, but some Democrats in the House want to change the deal, one of the party's leaders said. Rep. Chris Van Hollen of Maryland, who heads the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee, said the package will get a House vote despite a threat by Democrats to prevent it from reaching the floor. Last week, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid released the first version of legislation on the negotiated deal. The package combines extended Bush-era tax cuts with extended unemployment benefits, tax breaks and a payroll tax holiday intended to bolster a sluggish recovery from an economic recession.
A raging winter storm that dumped snow in parts of the Midwest over the weekend moved eastward Monday, leaving some highway and air travelers stranded and promising even more snow and brutal cold.
In northwest Indiana, at least two counties declared a state of emergency and urged drivers to stay off the roads. Police and highway crews struggled to dig out some stranded motorists and clear roads covered with blowing and drifting snow.
LaPorte County Sheriff's Deputy Patrick Drangmeister said several motorists remained stranded Monday morning in various locations throughout the county. He said every available deputy was out trying to help. A state of emergency was in place, with motorists urged to avoid all but highly essential travel.FULL STORY
The Minnesota state canvassing board Tuesday formally cleared the way for a recount in the razor-thin governor's race between Democratic candidate Mark Dayton and Republican state lawmaker Tom Emmer.
The recount begins Monday. Just 8,770 votes separate the two, with Dayton leading by less than one-half of one percent.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has named 16 areas in 11 states that don't meet EPA standards for lead in the air.
Exposure to lead may impair a child's IQ, learning capabilities and behavior.
The 16 areas that don't meet the standards are: FULL POST