This Day in Failure: January 24

2020: “We think we have it very well under control. We have very little problem in this country at this moment—five [cases]. And those people are all recuperating successfully. But we’re working very closely with China and other countries, and we think it’s going to have a very good ending for it. So that I can assure you.” —U.S. president Donald Trump, via Twitter, on the soon-to-explode conoravirus outbreak, which would go on to spread across the country, causing widespread deaths and grind the economy to a halt.

2020: “China has been working very hard to contain the Coronavirus. The United States greatly appreciates their efforts and transparency. It will all work out well. In particular on behalf of the American People.” —U.S. president Donald Trump, via Twitter.

2020: Republican Senator Kelly Loeffler (Georgia) and her husband, Jeffrey C. Sprecher, chairman of the New York Stock Exchange, begin executing 27 stock sales worth millions of dollars, the same day the senate receives a briefing about a soon-to-escalate conoravirus outbreak that causes the stock market to lose a third of its value. In the same period she also makes two stock purchases, including Citrix, a technology/teleworking company that sees its stock price rise as a result of coronavirus-induced stock market turmoil. Meanwhile, in the weeks after her stock trades, she publicly downplays the public-health and financial threats posed by the coronavirus, tweeting: “Democrats have dangerously and intentionally misled the American people on #Coronavirus readiness. Here’s the truth: @realDonaldTrump & his administration are doing a great job working to keep Americans healthy & safe.”

2009: Monster truck show promoter George Eisenhart, 41, is crushed to death after accidentally stepping in front of one of his trucks during a show in Madison, Wisconsin. Ironically, Eisenhart had touted the safety of his shows during a local television interview shortly before the event in question, saying: “This is our 16th year. I wish I had a big piece of wood to knock on right now, but we have not had an incident besides a gal slipping in an aisleway.”

1978: A nuclear powered satellite falls to earth, scattering radioactive debris over Canada.

1972: Shoichi Yokoi, a Japanese sergeant, is discovered hiding in a Guam jungle by local farmers, apparently unaware that World War II had ended twenty-eight years earlier. Yokoi, who was inadvertently left behind by retreating forces, went into hiding rather than surrender to American forces.

1961: A U.S. B-52 bomber suffers a structural failure of its right wing and breaks up in the air, dropping two 24-megaton nuclear bombs near Goldsboro, North Carolina. One bomb is undamaged, the other breaks apart upon impact. Three of the eight crew members are killed.