Archive | December 30, 2014

Heat health alert issued as temperatures set to soar across Melbourne, Australia

Heatwave Warning

AUTHORITIES have issued a heat health alert with temperatures set to soar across Melbourne suburbs this weekend.
Highs of 36C on Friday and 38C on Saturday are forecast as 2015 gets off to a scorching start.
The Department of Health issued the warning this week and people are urged to look after young children, the elderly, and ill neighbours and relatives.
Maroondah City Council has warned that some of its services might be altered or cancelled on Friday to encourage at-risk people to stay out of the heat.
Courtesy of The Herald Sun


Subject To Change

Depth: 600 km

Distances: 347 km W of Nuku‘alofa, Tonga / pop: 22,400 / local time: 10:17:23.8 2014-12-31
413 km SE of Suva, Fiji / pop: 77,366 / local time: 10:17:23.8 2014-12-31
1018 km SW of Apia, Samoa / pop: 40,407 / local time: 11:17:23.8 2014-12-31

Global viewRegional view


Subject to change

Depth: 4.1 km

Distances: Latitude, Longitude  64.651 -17.494
(2.0 km NE of Bárðarbunga)

Earthquake location   30 Dec 22:20 GMT

Map of earthquake epicentres

Time and magnitude of earthquake   30 Dec 22:20 GMT

Graph showing earthquake timing and magnitude


Subject To Change

Depth: 10 km

Distances: 2354 km S of Canberra, Australia / pop: 327,700 / local time: 05:42:49.5 2014-12-31
2604 km SW of Wellington, New Zealand / pop: 381,900 / local time: 07:42:49.5 2014-12-31
4108 km S of Nouméa, New Caledonia / pop: 93,060 / local time: 05:42:49.5 2014-12-31

Global viewRegional view


Subject To Change

Depth: 50 km

Distances: 321 km N of Davao, Philippines / pop: 1,212,504 / local time: 21:13:36.6 2014-12-30
265 km E of Cebu City, Philippines / pop: 798,634 / local time: 21:13:36.6 2014-12-30
24 km NE of Union, Philippines / pop: 2,368 / local time: 21:13:36.6 2014-12-30

Global viewRegional view


Subject To Change

Depth: 10 km

Distances: 1905km (1184mi) ENE of Scott Island Bank, Antarctica
2924km (1817mi) SE of Dunedin, New Zealand
2952km (1834mi) SE of Oamaru, New Zealand
2967km (1844mi) SE of Christchurch, New Zealand
3019km (1876mi) SE of Wellington, New Zealand  

Global view

Apocalyptic hailstorm destroys over 50 houses in Lilongwe, Malawi, Africa

Disaster Alert

From worries that rain may not come this year now to worries brought about by disasters caused by the same much anticipated rain, this is the situation at Group Village Headman Senda and surrounding villages in Traditional Authority Kalumbu, in Lilongwe, where over 50 houses have been destroyed.

One of the victims, a blind woman who has lost a home built for her by her children

“It was Saturday afternoon when rain started falling as normal but within minutes thunder, hailstones and a strong storm, all combined, descended on this village so strong and dark that we couldn’t see even the next house,” described Group Village Headman Senda.

He said when it was over, the destruction was enormous: “The rainstorm has destroyed many things; 35 houses, 20 roofed with corrugated iron sheets and 15 grass thatched houses in this village alone, bags of fertilizer have been dissolved, maize flour, clothes, blankets and other household items.”

Group Village Headman Senda is also a victim of the hailstorm

He said the village has about 400 adults and all of them are affected in one way or another by this disaster. Many of them are now homeless and they ‘pack’ themselves in few remaining houses to sleep in the night.

According to Group Village Headman Senda, the rainstorm which has killed two goats and injured a young girl in his village, has also destroyed houses in Kalazi and Kayabwa villages in the same area.

Pathetic scenes of Senda village

The chief appealed to government and organizations to come to their rescue soon so that they can continue with their farming activities to avoid food shortage next year.

He emphasized that the immediate needs of the villagers are food stuffs, materials to rebuild their houses and household items.

Courtesy of Nyasa Times

Patient Assessed For Deadly Ebola Virus Symptoms In Truro, Cornwall, England, UK

Ebola Virus

A patient is being assessed for possible symptoms of Ebola at the Royal Cornwall Hospital in Truro.

The person is being kept in isolation and the result will be known in around 24 hours.

The patient had recently been in a high-risk Ebola area, although the exact location has not been revealed.

The tests are thought to be precautionary – more than 100 patients have tested negative in similar circumstances over the last few months.

Symptoms of Ebola are very similar to other tropical diseases, such as malaria.

It comes as the first person to be diagnosed with Ebola in the UK – a Scottish nurse – arrives in London for specialist medical care.

In a joint statement, the hospital and Public Health England said: “A patient has been admitted to Royal Cornwall Hospital and is currently undergoing a series of tests – one of which is for Ebola.

“We do not expect the results to be known for at least 24 hours and in the meantime the patient is being looked after in isolation, following nationally agreed guidelines and protocols to protect the health of our staff and other patients.

“Royal Cornwall Hospitals NHS Trust has been following national guidance around Ebola and made plans in line with advice from Public Health England and NHS England.”

Courtesy of Sky News

Coldest New Year on the way since 1988 in Malta

Xlendi - Mike Cressey -
Weathermen are forecasting New Year’s Eve will be the coldest December day in Malta in 26 years.
The Meteorological Office is predicting temperatures to dip to a minimum of 4˚C tomorrow night because of a spell of cold weather heading towards the Mediterranean from Scandinavia and Russia.
Msida Valley Road flooded this morning, with a number of stalled cars. Picture Hamody Zedan facebook/times of malta
The Maltese Islands got a taste of what may be in store with a hailstorm overnight as well as heavy rain and thunder. (See pictures above and below)
'Snowboy' in Zebbug, Gozo. Picture Sarah Xuereb
Xaghra, Gozo, this morning. Picture Lawrence Camilleri -
The last time temperatures went below 4˚C in December was in 1988 when it dropped to 3.7˚C. 
On the continent, cold snaps combined with showers usually result in snow.  B/times of malta[/attachut a Met Office spokesman brushed off the idea of that happening in Malta.
“The temperature needs to get close to 0˚C for snow, and that is something which has never happened since 1922 when meteorological records started being kept.”
He explained it was next to impossible to see snow in Malta since the island is too far south and surrounded by sea. At 18˚C, the sea is still warm and not predicted to go below 15˚C.
However data produced by Nadur weather station last night shows that the temperature actually did slip below zero for a brief moment at -0.6c. See screen shots below. Second picture shows temperature conditions early in the morning.(courtesy Andrea Muscat)
Courtesy of The Times Of Malta

Lightning Strike Kills Four On Brazil Beach


A pregnant woman and her husband are among four members of the same family killed as violent storms hit the Sao Paulo region
At least four people have been killed by a lightning strike on a beach on the coast of Brazil.
Another four people were injured when a violent storm suddenly hit Praia Grande, near the port city of Santos, where the lightning strike happened on Monday.
Local media reported that among the dead was a pregnant woman and her husband, aunt and uncle.
Santos police did not provide an update on the condition of those injured.
The owner of a kiosk near the scene told Brazil’s Globo news network: “There was a noise like an explosion and I saw the lightning come down before a flash.
“There were more than 20 people in the area where it happened, either coming in from the sea or on the beach where the lightning hit.
“People were crying, panicking, then firefighters arrived with stretchers and equipment.”
Violent storms have ravaged southeast Brazil in recent days, with Sao Paulo bearing the brunt of the bad weather.
In the early hours of Monday, a storm downed scores of trees across the area with a population of almost 20 million, causing public transport chaos after more than 100 traffic lights malfunctioned.
Courtesy of Sky News