News digest: Qld man killed by shark, vaccine trials halted and the end of a TV era

Sep 09, 2020
Phase three trials of an Oxford University vaccine have been halted. Source: Getty.

It seems that barely a day goes by where the biggest news isn’t Covid-related, and today is no different we’re afraid. The biggest story this morning is that phase three trials of the Oxford University vaccine being developed with the pharmaceutical company AstraZeneca have been paused. According to the ABC, trials have been put on hold after one of the participants suffered an adverse reaction.

AstraZeneca released a statement this morning which said it “voluntarily paused” the trial to allow a review of the “single event” by an independent committee. “This is a routine action which has to happen whenever there is a potentially unexplained illness in one of the trials, while it is investigated, ensuring we maintain the integrity of the trials,” the statement continued.

Meanwhile in Queensland, a 46-year-old man has tragically passed away after being attacked by a suspected great white shark whilst surfing at Greenmount Beach in Coolangatta on the Gold Coast yesterday. According to the Courier Mail, real estate agent Nick Slater was bitten shortly after 5pm on Tuesday and died just minutes later on the beach.

The incident marks the first shark attack in the area since nets were introduced in the 1960s, however Gold Coast Mayor Tom Tate said: “”It doesn’t matter how long it’s been, it’s still a devastating shock to the Gold Coast community.”

Elsewhere in the Sunshine State, new legislation requiring priests to break the seal of confession to report child abuse to police has been making headlines across the country. New laws passed in the state parliament on Tuesday mean religious institutions will no longer be able to use the sanctity of the confessional as a defence in cases of child sex abuse, or they face three years in jail.

Police Minister Mark Ryan said the laws will ensure better protection for vulnerable children, reports the ABC. Ryan said: “The requirement and quite frankly the moral obligation to report concerning behaviours towards children applies to everyone everyone in this community. No one group or occupation is being singled out.”

And lastly, a bit of entertainment news! Here at Starts at 60, we’ve always prided ourselves on being a ‘Kardashian-free zone’, and now it seems the world may be following suit as the famous American family have called curtains on their hugely popular reality television show after 14 years and 20 seasons.

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