Archive | March 11, 2015

Record Breaking Snow Strikes Italian Village

“It was a spectacle that took our breath away. In some parts of the village the snow was like a long white wall,” village mayor Antonio Monaco told the Italian news agency ANSA, as translated to English by the Telegraph.
“It was tough but everybody pulled together and made sure that the old people who couldn’t leave their houses had the food and medicines that they needed.”
Capracotta sits at an elevation of 4,662 feet in central Italy, just an hour and a half drive from the country’s eastern coast.
CNN cautions the record isn’t official yet. Assuming the World Meteorological Association verifies the amount of snowfall, however, the storm would break previous records dating back to the 1920s.
In 1921, a mid-April storm in Silver Lake, Colorado dropped 75.8 inches of snow in a day, setting a record for the most snow to fall in the U.S. in 24 hours. Over the course of 32 and a half hours, the storm ultimately deposited more than 95 inches of snow.
Check out more photos of the snow in Capracotta below:
Courtesy of Huffington Post

Severe Sandstorm Hits United Arab Emirates

Dust storm reduces the visibility of motorists on Dubai roads. Photo by Ahmad Ardity
The UAE awoke this morning to a severe sandstorm, with strong winds blowing up sand and dust.
Social media messages were going out early with commuters and officials urging motorists to drive carefully.
Rainfall is also expected today and tomorrow across parts of the UAE, with the wet weather also blowing in fresh winds that will raise dust and sand over open areas and reduce visibility.
The country’s weather bureau has warned that visibility will be further dampened by the onset of early morning and late night fog, with Wednesday being particularly significant in the western internal areas of the UAE.
The National Center for Meteorology and Seismology (NCMS) has said that the change in weather will also bring about a noticeable drop in the mercury, blowing in the chill after last week’s spike in temperatures.
Motorist drives through a dust storm at Al Khail road in Dubai . Photo by Patrick Castillo
Elaborating on the wet conditions, the NCMS said‎: “Wednesday morning will see rainfall in parts, with the cloud amount increasing at times, especially to the north and the east, with a chance of some rain to extend over internal areas till Thursday morning.”
The partly cloudy and dusty weather will also mark a drop in temperatures to the west of the country, with the overcast climate ready to clear by Thursday afternoon.
“The relative humidity will increase over internal and coastal areas during the night and early morning time, with the probability of fog‎ over western internal areas, on Wednesday in specific,” the NCMS added.
The weather bureau has issued a warning for drivers to proceed with caution owing to the drop in visibility due to fog and rain, along with fishermen and surfers being warned of rough seas over the next 48 hours, especially the Arabian Gulf and the Oman Sea.
Dust storm in Dubai . Photo by Patrick Castillo
Courtesy of Emirates247

Tropical Cyclone Olwyn has intensified into a category 2 off Western Australia’s North West coast

Cyclone Alert

The storm is approaching the west Pilbara coast with landfall expected between Exmouth and Mardie early Friday morning.
The Bureau of Meteorology (BoM) said there were sustained winds of 95 kilometres per hour near the centre of the cyclone and gusts up to 130kph.
The BoM expects the system will then continue to move south before weakening.
Destructive gusts in excess of 150 kilometres per hour could develop near the west Pilbara coast late on Thursday evening.
The BoM said the system had rapidly developed over Wednesday afternoon as it headed south towards the mainland.
The Department of Fire and Emergency Services issued a blue alert for people in or near communities between Whim Creek to Coral Bay, extending inland to Pannawonica.
The warning applies to residents in Roebourne, Karratha, Dampier, Onslow, Pannawonica, Whim Creek, Wickham, Point Samson, and Exmouth.
DFES said people in those areas should prepare for cyclonic conditions and organise an emergency kit.
A blue alert is the first stage of cyclone warning issued by DFES and it warns people to prepare for dangerous weather.
Perth Tropical Cyclone Warning Centre’s Brad Santos said the winds would be damaging.
“There is uncertainty with the track and intensity of tropical cyclones,” he said.
“Certainly communities along the west Pilbara coast should be vigilant and our latest forecast track map has it passing between Onslow and Exmouth during Friday morning, but with the uncertainty it may pass slightly to the west or a little further to the east.”
Exmouth’s Shire president Turk Shales said he expects a red alert lockdown to be enforced on the town by Thursday evening.
He said the town hall on Maidstone Crescent was being prepared as an evacuation centre.
“When it gets to yellow alert, if you feel uncomfortable about the house you live in, make your way to the cyclone shelter which is the town hall,” he said.
Mr Shales said he was concerned about how the cyclone may impact Carnarvon, which experienced a major flood in December 2010 due to a tropical low that passed through the region.
“There still is a big worry for our friends down in Carnarvon because the Gascoyne River is at five metres already, the last thing they want is another three or four metres of water coming through that joint,” he said.
“I really feel for them at the moment because it looks like after it hits us, even though it’s going to reduce to category one, it’s going to travel inland after Coral Bay, and of course [the water] will go straight back into the Gascoyne River.”
Resources companies have started evacuating staff from offshore rigs as a they prepare for the cyclone.
An Apache Energy spokesman said the company had started evacuating non-essential staff from its offshore operations.
Apache said it would continue to closely monitor all facilities during the passage of the tropical low.
A Chevron spokeswoman said the company was working with its contractors to make the necessary precautionary arrangements at its construction, drilling and production sites in the Pilbara.
She said the oil and gas giant’s number one priority was the health and safety of its people.
A Rio Tinto spokeswoman said the company was monitoring the situation and preparing their operations as advised by local authorities.
BHP Billiton said it was monitoring the situation and would continue to work with the relevant authorities, including the Pilbara Ports Authority, to plan any preparation required.
The Pilbara Ports Authority said it had commenced clearing the port and anchorages of Dampier and Ashburton of all large vessels.
The authority said at this stage there had been no impact to operations at the Port Hedland port.
Exmouth District High School will be closed on both Thursday and Friday.
The BoM advised heavy rainfall likely over the western Pilbara and northern Gascoyne over Friday and Saturday may lead to flooding.
Courtesy of ABC Net

Category 5 Cyclone Pam To Strike Vanuatu

Tropical Cyclone Pam
PHOTO: A map issued on March 11, 2015 shows the predicted path of Cyclone Pam as it heads between Vanuatu and Fiji. (Vanuatu Meteorology Department)
The Vanuatu Meteorological Service has issued a second weather warning to parts of the country’s north with Tropical Cyclone Pam predicted to intensify into a category five storm by Friday.
Renewed wind warnings were issued to the provinces of Torba, Sanma, Malampa and Penama as the severe cyclone, currently rated a category three storm, passes between Vanuatu and Fiji. The storm is predicted to increase into a category four system tonight.
The service predicted gale-force winds for the southern part of Vanuatu including Port Vila would start from 11:00pm (local time) tonight.
Senior forecaster for the service, Allan Ravai, said winds of up to 90 kilometres per hour were expected within the next 24 hours as the system moved south at a speed of 10 kilometres per hour.
“We still advise people of the damaging winds and very rough seas with heavy swells, mainly for the northern provinces,” Mr Ravai told the ABC’s Pacific Beat program.
He said heavy rain and flooding was also expected in Vanuatu’s north, including coastal flooding.
View image on Twitter
Photo by @orrnyereg
Mr Ravai said the cyclone is predicted to become a category five system on Friday when it is 120 kilometres east of the country’s central island.
Australian Bureau of Meteorology national operations centre head Andrew Tupper said Pacific nations were on high alert.
“This is actually the most significant cyclone of all in terms of its size, which is very large, and its intensity,” Mr Tupper said.
“It’s forecast to thread the needle between Vanuatu and Fiji as it moves south, but probably a little bit too close to Vanuatu for anybody’s liking.”
UNICEF Pacific said it would meet with Vanuatu’s national disaster management team on Wednesday to discuss cyclone preparations.
A heavy rain and gale wind warning is also in place for Fiji. Shipping vessels have been ordered to stay in port, while residents in Fiji have been urged not to head out to sea this week.
Residents in the eastern parts of Solomon Islands have also been told to expect heavy rain, gale-force winds and high seas.
Meanwhile, Queensland coastal communities are preparing for Cyclone Nathan which is located off the state’s far north coast.
Although close, the two systems are not expected to merge.
Courtesy of ABC Net

Landslide destroys two Whidbey Island homes, USA

Landslide Danger Alert

A landslide has destroyed two homes on Whidbey Island.
KIRO-TV reports the homes were on Campers Row, a community along the Puget Sound accessible only by a private walkway.
Courtesy of DJC


Subject To Change

Depth: 21 km

Distances: 171 km S of Managua, Nicaragua / pop: 973,087 / local time: 10:23:38.0 2015-03-11
112 km W of Liberia, Costa Rica / pop: 45,380 / local time: 10:23:38.0 2015-03-11
89 km W of Sardinal, Costa Rica / pop: 3,267 / local time: 10:23:38.0 2015-03-11

Global viewRegional view




***BE ALERT***

Proton Alert 11.03.15 16.40 hrs UTC


Subject To Change

Depth: 4.5 km

Distances: Beaver, UT – 10 km (6 miles) S (180 degrees)
Minersville, UT – 25 km (16 miles) E (98 degrees)
Circleville, UT – 32 km (20 miles) W (273 degrees)
Paragonah, UT – 35 km (22 miles) NNE (20 degrees)
Caliente, NV – 176 km (110 miles) ENE (68 degrees)

11.03.15 M2.8 4.5 km


Subject To Change

Depth: 4.9 km

Distances: Marysvale, UT – 9 km (6 miles) S (171 degrees)
Junction, UT – 14 km (9 miles) N (2 degrees)
Kingston, UT – 18 km (11 miles) N (351 degrees)
Circleville, UT – 22 km (14 miles) NNE (12 degrees)
Provo, UT – 214 km (133 miles) SSW (193 degrees)

09.03.15 M2.1 4.9 km