Archive | April 23, 2015

Massive landslide leaves 2 homes on the brink of falling into the Delaware River, New Jersey, USA

Landslide Danger Alert

A landslide has left two homes in New Jersey on the brink of falling into the Delaware River.
 
Erosion has been a problem for several years for some homes in Florence. But the recent rain has created a hole that is growing larger.
 
Engineers on Wednesday were evaluating the effects of the landslide.
 
Chris and Lynne O’Dell tell The Times of Trenton (bit.ly/1HtaRsa ) that they fear they might have to pack up and move within a few days.
 
Lynne O’Dell says, “Every time it rains, I cringe.”
 
The O’Dells suspect an old sewer system that runs from the street into the river 70 feet below is to blame.
 
They filed a claim against Burlington County. But a company working for the county has denied the claim.
Courtesy of foxbusiness.com

Coal mine floods killing 21 in North China

Mining Accident Alert

Search teams have recovered the bodies of 21 Chinese coal miners who died when the shaft where they were working filled with water, an official said Thursday.
 
After days of frantic rescue efforts following the accident Sunday, the final death toll of 21 was confirmed Thursday by a Datong city government official who gave only his surname, Meng. More than 600 rescuers had been working to pump water from the shaft and drill holes from the surface at the Jiangjiawan mine near the northern city of Datong.
 
A total of 247 miners were underground when water rushed into the shaft Sunday evening.
 
Of those, 223 people made it safely to the surface while three of those trapped were rescued and were recovering in hospital.
 
Such accidents are usually caused by breaches of abandoned shafts where water has collected over time.
 
China has seen a dramatic drop in accidental deaths in its notoriously dangerous mines, partly as a result of improved safety measures but also because of falling coal production levels as the slowing economy reduces demand.
Courtesy of globalnews.ca

Bus crash kills 17 and injures dozens in Nepal

Bus accident in Nepal, 22 April 2015
Police in Nepal say that 17 Indian tourists have died and 30 others injured after a bus veered off a mountain road and crashed in a river.
 
The accident happened some 16km (10 miles) west of the capital, Kathmandu.
 
The bus was carrying tourists to Gorakhpur from Kathmandu.
 
Accidents are common in Nepal’s mountainous regions largely because of poor road conditions, badly maintained vehicles, reckless driving and overloading.
 
Police officer Tejendra told the Associated Press news agency that the bus veered off the Prithvi highway and plunged nearly 1,000ft (300m) before landing in a river.
 
He said the injured had been taken to different hospitals in Kathmandu.
In November, 47 people died after a bus crashed into a river in western Nepal.
 
And in October, an overloaded bus in the west of the country plunged off a road into a gorge, killing at least 29 people. Most of the passengers were travelling to meet their families to celebrate a Hindu festival.
Courtesy of BBC News

Severe storm kills 32 in India’s Bihar state

Uprooted poles in Bihar storm, 22 April
At least 32 people were killed in a storm which hit the eastern Indian state of Bihar late on Tuesday, a government official told BBC Hindi.
 
Fierce winds uprooted trees and electric poles and caused widespread damage in three districts.
 
Five other districts near the Kosi river were also affected, a disaster management official said.
 
Reports said several dozen people were injured and the toll was expected to increase.
 
The storm hit the districts of Purnea, Saharsa, Madhubani, Darbhanga, Katihar, Kishanganj, Supaul and Madhepura.
 
Thousands of huts, housing impoverished labourers, were destroyed, along with crops of wheat, maize, and pulses, the Press Trust of India reported.
Uprooted poles in Bihar storm, 22 April
The principal secretary of Bihar’s disaster management department, Vyashji Mishra, said “communication and electricity have been disrupted and roads are blocked with uprooted trees”.
 
He said the extent of the damage would become clearer after all affected areas had been accessed.
 
Bihar’s director general of police, PK Thakur, said rescue workers were still trying to reach some of the storm-hit areas, the AFP news agency reported.
 
Schoolteacher Alok Anand, in the worst-affected Purnea district, wrote on Facebook that the storm was “like a hurricane”.
 
“Many homes have been destroyed and many people have become homeless overnight,” he said.
 
In the past few years, areas along the Kosi river have suffered severe flooding, and scores of people have died.
Courtesy of BBC News

Meningitis outbreak forces schools to shut in Niger, Africa

Meningitis Alert

All schools in and around Niger’s capital, Niamey, have been shut until Monday because of a meningitis outbreak that has killed 85 people this year.
 
A shortage of vaccines to treat the current strain has caused the outbreak to spread, the authorities say.
 
A campaign to vaccinate all children between two and 15 will begin on Friday, but only half of the 1.2m doses needed are currently available.
 
The prime minister has asked for help getting the remaining doses.
 
“For the rest of the needed vaccines, we are appealing to all our partners to come to our aid to supplement the stock of vaccine doses we direly need,” Reuters news agency reports Brigi Rafini as saying on national television.
 
The authorities have warned people against using unauthorised vaccines, saying the doses might be for the wrong strain of the disease, the agency says.
Courtesy of BBC News

Cow ‘starts eating sheep’ on Nakuru farm, Kenya, Africa

The black dairy cow in its enclosure
Photo by Kenya Citizen TV
A farmer in Kenya says one of his cows has given up its usual vegetarian diet and started eating sheep.
 
Charles Mamboleo, who runs a farm in south-western Nakuru County, discovered the cow feeding on a sheep one morning, having apparently gored it to death, the Daily Nation website reports. Fresh food and water couldn’t tempt the cow, and another sheep met its end the following day, the report says. “After the first incident, we thought the cow was starving, so we increased the supply of fodder and water, but it still continued chasing after sheep,” says Mr Mamboleo.
 
While cows are herbivores, developing a taste for meat could be a sign of a nutrient deficiency, according to a local agricultural officer. “The dry season, which has just ended, has seen most animals lack minerals found in green grass,” Albert Kabugi tells the site. In 2007, a calf in India’s West Bengal region was filmed eating chickens. A local vet said he suspected a lack of vital minerals was also to blame in that case, noting that it could happen in “exceptional” circumstances.
Courtesy of BBC News

State Of Emergency Declared As Calbuco Volcano Erupts For First Time Since 1972

Chile’s Calbuco volcano has erupted for the first time in 43 years, prompting an evacuation of at least 4,000 people.
 
The volcano, which has been inactive since 1972, spilled a huge ash cloud into the skies above southern Chile before a second eruption hours later.
 
No injuries were reported, but a 21-year-old hiker remains missing.
 
In the wake of the eruption the National Mining and Geological Service issued a high alert and banned access to surrounding areas.
 
Close to the cities of Puerto Varas and Puerto Montt, the volcano is around 620 miles south of the capital Santiago.
President Michelle Bachelet has declared a state of emergency.
 
She described the eruption as “more serious and unpredictable” than the eruption of Chile’s Villarica volcano,which forced the evacuation of thousands last month.
 
“The ash might damage crops, animal feed, bridges, roads, people’s work routines, tourism and especially their health,” she said.
There are concerns the ash could contaminate the water and cause respiratory illnesses.
 
Alejandro Verges, a regional emergency director of the Los Lagos region, said the eruption was unexpected.
 
“For us it was a surprise,” he said.
 
Calbuco is 6,500ft-tall and is considered one of Chile’s top three most dangerous volcanoes.
 
The country has around 90 active volcanoes.
Courtesy of Sky News

MAGNITUDE 5.3 RAT ISLANDS, ALEUTIAN ISLANDS

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us200028ka#general_summary

Subject To Change

Depth: 56 km

Distances: 74km (46mi) SSE of Buldir Island, Alaska
1212km (753mi) E of Petropavlovsk-Kamchatskiy, Russia
1229km (764mi) E of Vilyuchinsk, Russia
1230km (764mi) E of Yelizovo, Russia
3090km (1920mi) W of Whitehorse, Canada

Map showing extent (w,s,e,n) = (171.3821, 46.7467, 180, 56.7467)

MAGNITUDE 6.3 SANTA CRUZ ISLANDS

http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/eventpage/us200028gt#general_summary

Subject To Change

Depth: 72 km

Distances: 158km (98mi) SSE of Lata, Solomon Islands
396km (246mi) NNW of Luganville, Vanuatu
663km (412mi) NNW of Port-Vila, Vanuatu
763km (474mi) ESE of Honiara, Solomon Islands
988km (614mi) N of We, New Caledonia

Map showing extent (w,s,e,n) = (161.4238, -17.025399999999998, 171.4238, -7.025399999999999)