Archive | July 8, 2014

Two trains collide causing multiple injuries in Durban, South Africa

Breaking News

At least 80 people were injured in a train collision near Berea in Durban on Tuesday evening, said South African officials.

The accident trains are passenger trains operated by Metrorail. The power line of the railway was shut down after the crash.

Emergency Service ER24 spokesperson Derrick Banks told media that the passengers, sustained minor to moderate injuries, had been transported to various hospitals.

Metrorail spokesperson Dumi Dube said no death have been reported.

The investigation of the accident is under way. However Dube said the collision could have been caused by faulty signals on one of the trains.



Subject To Change

Depth: 15 km

Distances: 129km (80mi) NE of Shache, China
189km (117mi) E of Kashi, China

267km (166mi) SW of Aksu, China
286km (178mi) SE of At-Bashi, Kyrgyzstan

495km (308mi) SE of Bishkek, Kyrgyzstan

Global view

Severe hailstorm causes mayhem & Kills a man in Sofia, Bulgaria

Severe Weather Alert

A man was killed in a severe hailstorm which hit Sofia shortly before 5 p.m. on Tuesday, Sofia City Hall reported. The pedestrian was killed by a tree which was knocked down by the storm in Boris’ Garden, the city’s main park. The local government also received reports about smashed windows of buildings and cars, fallen trees and traffic light failures after the hailstorm.

Heavy rain and hail causes flash floods in Bournemouth as summer storms strike parts of Britain

Flash flooding affected many parts of the country today after a series of short, heavy downpours. This bus in Braidley Road in Bournemouth struggled through the flooding
  • Heavy downpours have been affecting several parts of the country causing flash flooding in Bournemouth
  • North-east also affected by heavy rain causing A&E department at South Tyneside District Hospital to partially close
  • Yellow ‘be aware’ warning for heavy rain issued for parts of eastern England, eastern Scotland and Northern Ireland
The Met Office says that in some parts of the country today, 10 to 15mm of rain fell in just an hour
A street in the Branksome area of Poole in Dorset looked like a scene from winter after hail fell today

7-miles high plume of ash from Russia’s Shiveluch volcano poses threat to aviation

Russia’s active volcano Shiveluch, located on the Kamchatka peninsula in the country’s Far East, spewed a series of ash emissions to a height ranging between five and 11 kilometers (3-7 miles), but the eruptions pose no threat to nearby residential areas, local volcanic research group reported on Tuesday.

However, the Kamchatka Volcanic Response Team (KVERT) warned air traffic control services of the danger, which volcano poses to aircraft issuing the “Orange” code of warning for the aviation. The service advised airlines to alter their scheduled flight routes saying ash particles are capable of choking aircraft’s engines.

The Aviation Color Codes reflect four levels of danger posed for civilian aircraft overflying areas adjacent to volcanoes and range from ‘Green’ to ‘Red’ codes. According to the International Airways Volcano Watch system (IAVW) the ‘Orange’ code stands for “Volcano is exhibiting heightened unrest with increased likelihood of eruption” or “Volcanic eruption is underway with no or minor ash emission.”

The cloud of ash, which the 3,283-meter (10,771 feet) Shiveluch churned out as a result of three emissions over the past 24 hours, has extended to the length of 100 kilometers (62) miles and moves in the southeastern direction towards the Pacific Ocean.

Local Emergencies Ministry’s department warned tourism companies operating in the region against holding tours in areas located near the volcano.

There are over 150 volcanoes on the Kamchatka peninsula in Russia’s Far East, and up to 30 of them are active.

The Shiveluch is located some 450 kilometers (280) miles to the northeast of the Kamchatka Peninsula’s largest city of Petropavlovsk-Kamchhatsky with the population of over 181,600. However, nearest residential areas are located within the distance of 50 kilometers 931 miles) from the Shiveluch, which had been regularly spewing out ash since 1980s.

Violent hailstorm devastates many vineyards in France

Hail Formation Alert

The hits just keep on coming for French growers as another wine region is devastated by hail.

The latest hail victims in the French vineyards are located in the south where a violent hailstorm, with very high winds, hit late Sunday afternoon.

A total of 15,000 hectares (37,000 acres) of agricultural land – mainly vineyards – are said to be affected. The two wine regions worst hit are Malepère, west of Carcassonne and Minervois, between Carcassonne and Narbonne. Parts of Corbières were also in the hail zone.

Weather in Languedoc-Roussillon this summer has veered from one extreme to the other. It started out unseasonably dry and hot, with concerns about drought. Vintage is expected to start very early in mid-August, making this a potentially disastrous time in the vines’ development for storms to hit.

After a visit to one of the producers in the affected area, the director of the local Chamber of Agriculture, Philippe Vergnes, described the situation as “a catastrophe, a cataclysm”. He pointed out that one quarter of the vineyards in the Aude department (one of the most-planted parts of France) was hit. Only an estimated 10-15 percent of producers have hail insurance.

At the main wine cooperative in Malepère – whose members own around 1000 hectares – about half the vines are estimated to be severely damaged.

Jérome Despey, the president of the wine advisory section for Agrimer (the French agricultural ministry) commented that there had been a growing phenomenon of storms in the past few years and no region had been spared.

Despey expects there to be another drop in French wine production this year, leading to supply problems. In recent years bad weather conditions have led to the smallest production levels ever experienced. There has been an estimated 22 percent drop in volumes in France between 2002 and 2013.

Hail also hit the vineyards of Lavaux in Switzerland’s Vaud canton on Sunday, while eastern French wine regions suffered storms that caused some localized hail, flooding and high winds.

Northern Bordeaux, Cognac and La Clape in the Languedoc all suffered devastating hailstorms recently, while producers in Burgundy are still reeling after the severe hailstorm 10 days ago, which damaged around 3000 hectares (7400 acres).

It was the third consecutive year that the same zone in Burgundy’s Côte d’Or has suffered hailstorms and, last week, producers called on local government for assistance.


***BE ALERT***
Magnetogram 08.07.14  21.49 hrs UTC


Subject To Change

Depth: 17 km

Distances: 52km (32mi) WNW of Wewak, Papua New Guinea
224km (139mi) ESE of Vanimo, Papua New Guinea

292km (181mi) ESE of Jayapura, Indonesia
302km (188mi) ESE of Abepura, Indonesia

807km (501mi) NNW of Port Moresby, Papua New Guinea

Global view

Major power outages to over 69,000 people as severe storms causes devastation in Kansas, USA

A tree fell over in Cathy Breithaupt's yard in Rantoul, KS. (Submitted photo)
Thousands of people across the metro are in the dark after severe storms pounded the metro overnight.

As of 10 a.m. Tuesday, KCP&L said they currently have about 8,800 customers remaining without power.

During the span of the storm, KCP&L had about 69,000 customers without power. High winds in excess of 50 mph and wind gusts as high as 70 mph, as well as lightning, were the major causes of the outages.

Some of the most affected areas are Paola, Liberty and just south of Raytown.

“We have called in all our available linemen and tree crews including our contract crews and are working to restore our customers as quickly and safely as possible. However the lingering storms from this morning and the fact that the storm hit during the night may impact restoration times,” KCP&L said on their website.

A tree is down in a yard in Sugar Creek.

Tornado destroys homes in Wyoming, USA

In many ways, the city of Wyoming dodged a bullet.
No serious injuries were reported as a result of Sunday night’s tornado that caused major damage across southern Kent County.
The Ideal Park neighborhood, however, was left in anything but ideal shape.
The EF-1 tornado that touched down after 10:30 Sunday night ripped apart Ideal Park before destroying more than 50 homes in Wyoming, as well as 10 to 15 businesses.
“There is a great mess here. Our Ideal Park is catastrophic,” said Wyoming City Manager Curtis Holt.
Fallen trees and power lines have thousands without power.
Holt and Consumers Energy spokesman Roger Morgenstern say restoring the power is a top priority.
“We have 250 field personnel dedicated in Kent County alone,” said Morgenstern. “That’s a tremendous amount of bucket trucks, linemen, service workers working.”
“We need to make sure that homes are safe and that their electrical systems are safe,” said Holt. “We have inspectors ready the minute we know the system is safe.”
Wyoming Chief of Police and Fire James Carmody told WZZM 13 that the city is not issuing a State of Emergency, saying that his teams’ resources are not depleted.
Carmody says Wyoming’s police and fire departments are now focused on stabilizing the areas affected and keeping people out of the neighborhoods that don’t belong. Authorities plan to have extra public safety patrols on the streets for the next 48 hours, and they say residents will be asked for identification to show that they live in the area before being allowed through.