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5 things to know for January 31: Ice storm, Covid-19, gun violence, DOJ, TikTok

By Alexandra Meeks, CNN

The average age of a first-time mother in the US climbed above 27 years — marking a record high — in 2021, according to a new CDC report. While decisions around having children largely depend on personal circumstances, researchers say the Covid-19 pandemic likely played a role in people putting off childbirth — in more ways than one.

Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On With Your Day. Here’s what else you need to know to Get Up to Speed and On with Your Day.

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1. Ice storm

A winter weather system moving through the US today is creating dangerous travel conditions. More than 1,100 flights were canceled Monday, with a similar number of cancelations expected today. Widespread delays are also being reported. So far, the most affected airports are Dallas Love Field, Dallas-Fort Worth International, Austin Bergstrom International and Houston Bush International airports in Texas. The storm bringing the triple threat of ice, sleet and snow to the region has also prompted officials to close several roads and schools. About 38 million people from Texas and Oklahoma to Kentucky and West Virginia are under winter weather alerts as officials urge people to avoid any unnecessary journeys.

Check your local forecast here>>>

2. Covid-19

President Joe Biden intends to end Covid-19 national and public health emergencies on May 11, the White House said Monday. The public health emergency has enabled the government to provide many Americans with Covid tests, treatments and vaccines at no charge, as well as offer enhanced social safety net benefits, to help the nation cope with the pandemic. Once the emergency ends, some Americans will face out-of-pocket costs for certain testing and treatment options, but many will still be available at no charge. This comes as Covid-19 has become the eighth most common cause of death among children, a new study published Monday showed.

3.Lakeland shooting

As the nation grapples with recent incidents of gun violence and mass shootings, officials in Lakeland, Florida responded Monday to a scene where at least 10 people were wounded in a drive-by shooting. Eight of the victims have non-life-threatening injuries while two remain in critical condition, police said. Authorities believe the shooting was a targeted event, Lakeland Police Department Chief Sam Taylor said, and officials have urged the community to report any information that could help with their investigation. In his 34 years with the department, Taylor said he had never worked on a case where so many people had been shot at one time.

4. Classified documents

The Justice Department told Republican Rep. Jim Jordan of Ohio Monday it would not provide most of the information he requested about the special counsel investigation into President Joe Biden’s handling of classified material until the probe is complete. Jordan, who chairs the House Judiciary Committee, has demanded access to a host of documents related to the investigation. Among several reasons offered for its decision, the DOJ said it would uphold its longstanding practice of withholding information that could endanger or compromise ongoing investigations. In the Mar-a-Lago probe, meanwhile, two people who searched former President Donald Trump’s properties for classified documents also testified before a federal grand jury last week, according to sources familiar with the matter — but the extent of information they offered currently remains unclear.

5. TikTok

TikTok CEO Shou Zi Chew will appear at an upcoming hearing before the House Energy and Commerce Committee, a committee spokesperson confirmed to CNN. He is expected to testify on TikTok’s privacy and data security practices, its impact on young users and its “relationship to the Chinese Communist Party,” according to a hearing announcement on the committee’s website. “It is now time to continue the committee’s efforts to hold Big Tech accountable by bringing TikTok before the committee to provide complete and honest answers for people,” Republican Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers of Washington said in a statement. The high-profile hearing comes as mounting evidence shows screens aren’t great for kids. A new study published this week revealed that, even for infants, too much screen time can impact executive function development.

BREAKFAST BROWSE

Meet the first mom to have two sons face off in the Super Bowl

Donna Kelce is already a winner. Her two sons — Jason and Travis — will both be at the Super Bowl with their respective teams, the Philadelphia Eagles and the Kansas City Chiefs.

Puppy Bowl XIX: How to watch the other big game

If the Super Bowl isn’t your thing, there’s another entertaining spectacle you can watch on February 12.

‘Bridgerton’ actress confirms her character won’t appear in Season 3

Phoebe Dynevor, one of the stars of the popular Netflix series, said she’ll instead enjoy its next season “as a viewer.”

Marie Kondo admits tidying up is no longer a top priority

The queen of clean, who previously strived for a perfectly organized home, said tidying has taken a back seat after having her third child.

Priscilla Presley contests the validity of Lisa Marie Presley’s will

Just days after Lisa Marie Presley was laid to rest, her mother, Priscilla Presley, is disputing some details in her daughter’s will.

IN MEMORIAM

Cindy Williams, the dynamic actress best known for playing the bubbly Shirley Feeney on beloved sitcom “Laverne & Shirley,” has died after a short illness, according to a statement from her family. She was 75.

Bobby Hull, hockey Hall of Famer and Stanley Cup champion, has died, the Chicago Blackhawks announced. He was 84. Over 1,063 NHL games, the 12-time All-Star finished with 610 goals and 560 assists.

TODAY’S NUMBER

95

That’s at least how many people were killed in northwestern Pakistan Monday after a bomb explosion ripped through a mosque at a police compound. At least 80 others are being treated for their injuries, health officials in the region said. An investigation is now underway to determine who was responsible for what was one of the deadliest attacks in the country in years.

TODAY’S QUOTE

This is just such a gross collapse of the system that we are supposed to trust.

— Antonio Romanucci, an attorney for Tyre Nichols’ family, sharing poignant remarks Monday on the fatal beating of 29-year-old Nichols by Memphis police officers. Prosecutors have said they’re looking at “everybody who had any kind of involvement” leading up to, during and following the deadly January encounter. City officials confirmed Monday that three Memphis Fire Department personnel have been fired over the incident, and a total of seven police officers have been placed on leave or fired.

AND FINALLY

Meet the man building human-sized nests

Watch this video to see how one man gathers and shapes branches to craft elaborate “nature temples” for humans across the US. (Click here to view.)

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