Weather Related News

[April 28, 2011]

Severe Storms in Six States Leave 300 Dead

Daylight illuminated a scene of utter devastation across many areas of the South on Thursday, following storms of near-epic proportions that killed as many as 300 people in six states. A widespread outbreak of severe weather across the Deep South may be one for the record books, as the National Weather Service received reports of more than 150 tornadoes. “This could be one of the most devastating tornado outbreaks in the nation’s history by the time it’s over,” CNN Meteorologist Sean Morris said. The unofficial number of twisters reported Wednesday by the Storm Prediction Center was 151. The same system continued to spin off tornadoes early Thursday. The long-term average for confirmed tornadoes in the entire month of April is 116.

The worst tornado outbreak in U.S. history occurred in April 1974, when 148 twisters touched down in 13 states over a 16-hour period, according to the National Weather Service. With the latest outbreak, April may turn out to be a historic month for tornadoes, he said. “We may finish out April with more than 300 tornadoes,” Carbin said. “It looks like it will be a record-breaker as far as sheer numbers go. The numbers for April are definitely on a record pace.”

[April 17, 2011]

Severe Storms in Six States Leave 45 Dead

The total number of people reported killed during a wave of severe storms across the South now stands at 45. That includes six victims in Virginia and 22 in North Carolina, according to emergency management agencies in both states. Virginia and North Carolina emergency and clean up crews on Monday continued their work assisting the displaced, restoring power to hundreds of thousands of customers and confirming the storm-related deaths of dozens of people. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Storm Prediction Center said it received reports of at least 230 tornadoes across the region during the past three days, though some of those reports were likely sightings of the same twister. Including North Carolina and Virginia, the storms destroyed buildings, uprooted trees, downed power lines and killed people in six Southern states.

[March 2, 2011]

FEMA, NOAA, Run Solar Storm Worst Case Scenario

Every few decades, the sun experiences a particularly large storm that can release as much energy as 1 billion hydrogen bombs. Officials from Europe and the US say an event like that could leave millions on Earth without electricity, running water and phone service. A massive solar storm could leave millions of people around the world without electricity, running water, or phone service, government officials say.  That was their conclusion after participating in a tabletop exercise that looked at what might happen today if the Earth were struck by a solar storm as intense as the huge storms that occurred in 1921 and 1859.  Solar storms happen when an eruption or explosion on the surface of the sun sends radiation or electrically charged particles toward Earth. Minor storms are common and can light up the Earth’s Northern skies and interfere with radio signals. Every few decades, though, the sun experiences a particularly large storm. These can release as much energy as 1 billion hydrogen bombs.

[December 9, 2010]

Record Rain Closes Panama Canal

Flooding forced the closure of the Panama Canal Wednesday for the first time in 21 years and heavy rains were being blamed for at least eight deaths in the Central American country. More than a thousand people in Panama were evacuated because of what authorities called historic flooding caused by record rainfall. President Ricardo Martinelli said it was the first time the canal was closed because of weather since it opened in 1914.

“Our meteorologists says it’s never rained so much in Panama in the 73 years that we’ve kept climate records,” Martinelli said. He said eight people were dead. The last time the canal closed was on Dec. 20 1989, when U.S. troops invaded the country to topple President Manuel Noriega.

[August 14, 2010]

Epic Flooding in Pakistan

Pakistan marked its 63rd birthday Saturday in the solemnity befitting a nation one-fifth under water. That’s how much of the south Asian country — an area the size of Florida — has flooded in relentless monsoon rains, the United Nations says. Nearly 1,400 people have died and 875,000 homes have washed away or are damaged, the Pakistan Disaster Authority says. What’s worse is that millions more are still at peril as the bloated Indus River is cresting this weekend in parts of Sindh province. In some areas, the Indus has fattened from its normal width of a mile to 12 miles. Homes, crops, trees, livestock, entire villages and towns have been transformed into vast lakes. The worst floods since Pakistan’s creation have disrupted the lives of about 20 million people, Prime Minister Yousaf Raza Gilani said Saturday. Many residents have ignored government warnings to evacuate the area, causing a big concern, Khawaja said. “The time to act is now — this is a disaster of unimaginable proportions,” said Nilofer Bakhtiar, head of the Pakistan Red Crescent Society. Thousands of flood victims huddled in sludgy camps or in jam-packed public buildings. Others slept under the stars next to the cows, sheep and goats they managed to rescue from rising waters. But when they might be able to return to dry lands at home remained a big question. Pakistan’s monsoon season is only half way over and more rain is on the way.

[August 4, 2010]

Drought, Heat, and Fires Plague Russia

Heat and drought have made Russia especially susceptible to wildfires with the country in the grip of a heatwave which has seen Moscow experience the hottest temperatures — 39 Celsius (102 Fahrenheit) — since records began in 1879. High temperatures are expected to continue through the middle of August, with no rain forecast.

More than 250,000 make-shift fire fighters have been added to fight the fires.

Russian authorities imposed a state of emergency in about 500 towns and villages on Monday. By Tuesday, fires covered an area of around 1,071 square kilometers (665 square miles), a spokesman for the Russian Emergencies Ministry said according to news agency Itar-Tass. More than 300 new fires were reported on Tuesday but 247 have been extinguished, the spokesman said. More than 500 fires continue to burn. Regions affected include Nizhny Novgorod, Vladimir and Voronezh and the Republic of Mordovia.

Russian officials fear that more than 25% of the country’s grain production will be lost. This would have far reaching impacts.

[June 21, 2010]

China Floods Death Toll Hits 147

The death toll from heavy flooding in southern China rose to 147 and may go higher as there are nearly 100 additional people still listed as missing. Authorities forecast more rain in coming days. In addition, the mud flows and floods have prompted the evacuation of more than 1 million people, the state-run China Daily newspaper reported, citing the Ministry of Civil Affairs. The heavy rains have affected more than 15 million people in nine of southern China’s provinces, including Fujian, Jiangxi, and Hunan provinces, the ministry told China Daily.

[June 4, 2010]

Tropical Storm Agatha Death Toll Climbs past 175

The death toll from Tropical Storm Agatha continued to grow Tuesday, with 152 reported killed in Guatemala, 16 in Honduras and nine in El Salvador. One-hundred people are missing in Guatemala and another 87 are injured, the nation’s emergency agency reported Tuesday. In addition, nearly 125,000 people have been evacuated and 74,000 are living in shelters, said emergency official David de Leon. The previously reported toll for Guatemala was 123 deaths, 90 people missing and 69 injured. It is feared that the number of dead will increase as rescuers search for the missing.

[April 24, 2010]

Massive Tornado Strikes Mississippi

As dawn broke Sunday and rescue crews prepared to reach hard-hit areas, officials fear the death toll will rise from a tornado that tore through Mississippi a day earlier. The twister, almost a mile wide, killed at least 10 people and decimated neighborhoods as it raked cities from the central western border with Louisiana northeastward to Alabama. It leveled a church, sheared roofs off houses, overturned cars and plunged large swaths of the state in darkness as it toppled power lines.

[November 3, 2009]

Venezuela Rations Water Due to Drought

Residents of the Venezuelan capital on Monday began to experience water rationing as part of a government preservation measure during a drought. The rationing will continue through the first quarter of 2010, the government said. The government says that weather changes are behind the drought. These drought conditions have reduced reservoir volume to critical levels, officials say. The level of the Camatagua Reservoir, which supplies Caracas with about half of its water, has been on a downward trend since 2007.

[October 5, 2009]

Death Toll Raises in India Floods

The number of dead in devastating floods triggered by torrential rains in India has risen to at least 271, and about a million people have fled their homes, officials said Monday. At least 192 people have died in the southern state of Karnataka, its disaster-management secretary H.V. Parshwanath told CNN. More than 450,000 people there have been housed in 1,330 relief camps as authorities completed rescue operations in most of the flooded zones in the state, he said.

[October 1, 2009]

Super Typhoon heads for Philippines

Typhoon Parma is expected to bring heavy rainfall and major property damage to the Philippines on Saturday, according to meteorologists. The storm was upgraded to a Super Typhoon Thursday as it churned towards the island nation with winds of 240 kph (150 mph). The storm was about 600 miles (965 km) southeast of Manila, the Philippines’ capital on Thursday afternoon. The five-day tracking map shows the storm south of Taiwan on Monday. Parma comes on the heels of Typhoon Ketsana, which left at least 246 people dead as it passed over the Philippines over the weekend. An additional 38 were still missing, the National Disaster Coordinating Council said.

[September 28, 2009]

Record Flooding in the Philippines Puts Death Toll at 140

Flood water began to subside after a weekend that saw Manila hit with its heaviest rainfall in more than 40 years.

More than 80 percent of the capital was under water at one point Sunday. The deluge caused by Tropical Storm Ketsana, which has since strengthened into a typhoon, engulfed whole houses and buses.

At least 140 people have died, the National Disaster Coordinating Council said.

[September 25, 2009]

Glaciers Melting Faster Than Previously Thought

The seas are rising, and climate scientists say they’ll keep rising as the globe continues to warm, causing all sorts of problems along tens of thousands of miles of coastline around the world. What the scientists can’t say for sure, though, is how much sea levels will go up, or how fast. That’s largely because nobody knows for sure how the vast ice sheets covering Greenland and Antarctica — especially the glaciers that flow down and into the sea — will respond.

more>>>Glaciers

[September 21, 2009]

At least two killed by flooding in Atlanta

Torrential downpours overnight in metropolitan Atlanta, Georgia, led to floods that killed two people, a spokeswoman for the Georgia Emergency Management Agency said Monday.

About 100 miles north, in Chattanooga, Tennessee, one person was swept into rushing water and is presumed drowned, said Jeremy Heidt, a spokesman for the Tennessee Emergency Management Agency in Nashville.

And in Chattooga County northwest of Atlanta, concerns that a levee might fail led 300 people to evacuate their homes in the city of Trion, where authorities opened a shelter for them in a church, Brummer said.

The problems came after days of persistent rain soaked a region that just recently was gripped by a seemingly unrelenting drought.

more>>>Floods

[September 9, 2009]

Dozens Killed by Record Floods in Turkey

The amount of rain that has fallen in two days roughly equals what normally falls in six months in the Turkish province, Istanbul Gov. Muammer Guler told the state-run Anatolia News Agency. “We never had such rain in all the time I have been here,” said Zafer Ercan, deputy mayor of the town of Silivri.

The resulting flash floods have caused the deaths of at least 28 people. Cars are being swept from the streets and dozens of cargo trucks flipped over or were ripped to pieces, the wreckage attracting crowds who watched the chaotic scene from nearby hilltops.

[September 5, 2009]

Artic Temperatures Highest in 2,000 Years !!!

According to researchers, Arctic temperatures in the 1990s reached their warmest level of any decade in at least 2,000 years. One contributing factor seems to be a phenomenon called Arctic amplification, which occurs as highly reflective Arctic ice and snow melt away, allowing dark land and exposed ocean to absorb more sunlight.

“Because we know that the processes responsible for past Arctic amplification are still operating, we can anticipate that it will continue into the next century,” said Gifford Miller of the University of Colorado at Boulder, a member of the study team.

“Consequently, Arctic warming will continue to exceed temperature increases in the rest of the Northern Hemisphere, resulting in accelerated loss of land ice and an increased rate of sea level rise, with global consequences.”

[August 13, 2009]

China – Worst Flooding in Decades !!!

Some parts of Taiwan have reported more than 83 inches of rain on the island, according to the U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration. A mud slide triggered by torrential rains may have buried up to 800 villagers in southern Taiwan, media reports said Monday, as the country assesses the impact of its worst flooding in decades.

[June 24, 2009]

Florida Space Coast sets Temperature Records

Record temperatures are one of predicted precursors leading to the more severe weather predicted for 2012 related events. That is exactly what the East coast of Florida known as the Space Coast is experiencing.

The heat index, the feel of the temperature combined with relative humidity on the human skin, was expected to top out at 100 degrees, officials said. Monday, Melbourne hit 99 degrees, with a heat index topping out at 107, breaking the previous 97 degree-record for the date in 1998.

The area around Patrick Air Force Base continued to feel like the hottest spot in Brevard County, with heat index readings of 112 degrees on Monday, the NWS reported.

Vero Beach reached an all-time high of 102 degrees on Monday, breaking the previous recorded high of 100 degrees set on June 27, 1950.

[June 4, 2009]

NOAA Predicts “Near Normal” Hurricane Season

Forecasters predict the 2009 Atlantic hurricane season will be “near-normal,” with four to seven hurricanes likely, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration announced. The Atlantic hurricane season began June 1 and runs through the end of November. In 2008, there were 16 named storms and eight hurricanes, five of which were major. It was among the busiest and costliest seasons to date, with about $54 billion in damages, according to the National Climatic Data Center.

[May 29, 2009]

Global Climate Change now ‘catastrophic’ 

The Global Humanitarian Forum reported from London, England today that global climate change is killing 300,000 people globally each year and that number could raise substantially. “Climate change is the greatest emerging humanitarian challenge of our time, causing suffering to hundreds of millions of people worldwide,” said the forum’s president, former U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan.

[April 10, 2009]

Too Many Fires to Count

Hurricane-force winds pushed wildfires across parts of Oklahoma and Texas, burning down the entire town of Stoneburg, Texas. “It’s a bad day in Oklahoma,” said Albert Ashwood, director of the state’s emergency management department. There were so many fires in so many places, that local safety officials weren’t sure how many fires they were fighting.

[March 25, 2009]

Historic Floods and Epic Drought hit the US

More than 1,000 volunteers rushed to fill sandbags early Wednesday in North Dakota to protect themselves from a historic floods that are expected to swamp the area. The fear is that the Red River could overtake all previous records. As of Wednesday morning, the Red River ran at about 33 feet, already 15 feet above flood level. A record level of 41.1 feet was set in 1897. Meanwhile, at least 36 states expect to face water shortages within the next five years, according to a report from the U.S. Government Accountability Office. According to the National Drought Mitigation Center, several regions in particular have been hit hard: the Southeast, Southwest and the West. Texas, Georgia and South Carolina have suffered the worst droughts this year, the agency said.

[March 12, 2009]

Scientists claim “Irreversible” climate change

During a three-day conference in Copenhagen, Denmark, climate scientists released data siting that  temperatures, sea levels, acid levels in the oceans and ice sheets were already moving “beyond the patterns of natural variability within which our society and economy have developed and thrived,”. The climate patterns are consistent with some worst-case scenarios predicted some two years earlier.

more >>> Changes

[February 10, 2009]

More Killed in Freak Tornado

At least eight people were confirmed dead as the result of tornados that struck Oklahoma Tuesday evening. The tornado was one of several that occurred in the state during a severe weather spurt Tuesday that was unusual, even for tornado-prone Oklahoma.

more >>> Tornado

[December 1, 2008]

2008 Hurricane Season 2nd Costliest

The National Climatic Data Center said 2008 is “the only year on record in which a major hurricane existed in every month from July through November in the north Atlantic.” To make matters worse, damage from the 2008 storms is estimated at $54 billion, the second highest ever, 2005 with Katrina and Rita was the highest.