Earth Changes

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Giant sinkhole shuts down Diagonal Road in Streetsboro, Ohio

© Bob Gaetjens/Gateway News
A 12-foot wide sinkhole has closed Diagonal Road between S.R. 14 in Streetsboro and Overlook Drive in Twin Lakes for four to six weeks. The hole was the result of a collapsed storm sewer line. On Friday, city employees worked to support an exposed water line in the sinkhole.
A portion of Diagonal Road between S.R. 14 in Streetsboro and Overlook Drive in Twin Lakes could remain closed four to six weeks because of a sinkhole.

The road was closed at about 7:30 p.m. on Thursday.

The sinkhole is on Diagonal Road between Pleasant Valley Road and Lake Royale Boulevard. Road closed signs are posted at S.R. 14 and Overlook Drive in Twin Lakes.

By about noon on Friday, the hole, which started as a 6- to 7-foot wide sinkhole, had eroded into a 12-foot wide chasm, according to Streetsboro Service Department Director Bill Miller. Portions of the shoulder of the road began falling into the hole, as well.

"Due to the questionable safe passage of motor vehicle traffic, the decision was immediately made to close the road to traffic," Mayor Glenn Broska wrote in a statement. "Barricades were erected as soon as possible and will remain in place until the culvert is repaired."

Miller encouraged traffic to use S.R. 14 and S.R. 43 as a detour.

Over 30 birds fall dead from the sky in Norman, Oklahoma

In the last 24 hours, Becki Miller has observed at least a dozen birds drop dead in her yard.
There's a bit of a mystery in the Norman area. Birds were seen falling dead out of the sky.

One homeowner, near highway 9 and I 35, found more than a dozen dead in her yard. Becki Miller does not consider herself a bird watcher, but she's identified a potential problem with a flock of black birds.

"I heard this thump and I noticed a bird had just fallen out of the sky," she said.

In the last 24 hours, she's observed at least a dozen birds drop dead in her yard. Becki worries the flock was poisoned, or worse, could be carrying a disease. She called on the Oklahoma Department of Wildlife to investigate.

Micah Holmes with the Department of Wildlife explains the sudden deaths of the birds could also be attributed to weather patterns or environmental stressors.

Comment: On the evening prior to this event came this report from the town of Duncan, which lies about 60 miles to the south of Norman: Mystery boom rattles homes in Duncan, Oklahoma

See also:

Radar Dopppler images confirm overhead 'turbulence' cause of 2011 mass bird death case in Beebe, Arkansas
Meteoric Deja-vu: Exactly one year later, dead blackbirds fall again in Beebe, Arkansas
A Sign for the New Year: 1,000 Birds Fall From the Sky in Beebe, Arkansas
Situation Update More than 5000 birds fall dead from Sky in Arkansas 12-31-2010 New Years Eve


Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano erupts again, spews ash and molten rock

Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano erupts
© Reuters / Carlos Campana
Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano spews molten rocks and large clouds of gas and ashes near Banos, south of Quito, April 4, 2014.
Ecuador's Tungurahua volcano erupted on Friday, spewing a huge column of molten rock and ash which surged 10 kilometers (six miles) above the volcano's crater following two strong explosions.

Pyroclastic material, a fast-moving current of hot gas and rock, flowed out of the northern and northwestern regions of the volcano, Geophysical Insitute of Ecuador's National Polytechnic School reported. The Institute continues to monitor the situation, as tremors are ongoing.

Five moderate explosions were also registered on Friday.

The 5,023-meter volcano, referred to as the 'Throat of Fire,' is located in the Cordillera Oriental of the Andes of central Ecuador and is the one of most active volcanos in South America and Ecuador.

Tungurahua had been quiet since October 2013 before resuming eruptions in February.

The volcano has been active since 1999, with the worst eruption occurring in 2006, when it killed four people and left two others missing.

Earthquake magnitude 5.3 in SW China: Over ten injured

Earthquake 5.4 in China
At least ten people were injured after a 5.3-magnitude earthquake struck a town in southwest China early Saturday, authorities said.

Yongshan County, Yunnan Province felt the shock, with epicenter 13 km deep in Xiluodu township, at 6:40 a.m. Saturday, according to the China Earthquake Networks Center.

Two of the injured are in a serious condition, said the county government's information office. Twenty houses collapsed and two roads were blocked by fallen rocks. One road has since reopened. Communications in the area were not affected.

"We felt the quake strongly, but it did not last long," said a local resident. Some were woken up by the tremor and ran out of their houses, but returned home a few minutes later.

Authorities have sent 400 tents and quilts for displaced residents and several thousand more have been made ready.

Yongshan is home to the Xiluodu hydropower project, China's second largest hydropower station, only 15 km from the epicenter. Rumors have spread that the quake was caused by the power station.
Bizarro Earth

Earthquake rattles southern Greece

© Dreamstime

Athens - Seismologists say an earthquake with a preliminary magnitude of 5.7 rattled southern Greece and was widely felt in the capital, Athens. There were no immediate reports of injuries or damage.

The U.S. Geological Survey put the preliminary magnitude at 5.7, with an epicenter 25 kilometers (15 miles) east of the island of Hydra and about 78 kilometers (48 miles) south of Athens. The Web site of the Athens Geodynamic Institute put the magnitude at 5.6. Different seismology institutes often have varying magnitudes in the early hours after a quake.

The quake occurred at 11:08 p.m. local time (2008 GMT).

Greece lies in a very seismically active area. A series of strong earthquakes in January on the western island of Kefalonia damaged hundreds of homes and injured more than a dozen people.

Source: Associated Press
Bizarro Earth

Road in Staffordshire, England is mysteriously 'bleeding' red

Red Stain on Road
© Leek Post and Times, UK
The red stain on the A523 Ashbourne Road.
The presence of iron from a water seepage could be the reason for a road turning red in the Staffordshire Moorlands.

Leek businessman Darron Fleming spotted that an area of the A523 Ashbourne Road entering Leek has appeared to be 'bleeding' after red colour began to blanket the highway.

Mr Fleming, who runs EcigSwag in Sheepmarket, Leek said: "So what's going on in this busy corner of Leek? Is this some kind of planetary stigmata?

"I travel this way daily and first noticed this strange phenomenon more than four weeks ago.
Bizarro Earth

Baby volcanic island 'eats' its older neighbor as Pacific Ring of Fire continues erupting at unprecedented rate

New Volcanic Island
© NASA Earth Observatory
Landsat 8 snapped this image of Niijima and Nishinoshima, now one island, on March 30, 2014.
As a seafloor volcano continues to erupt in a remote part of the Pacific Ocean, a newborn island has swallowed its neighbor whole, images from space show.

In November 2013, a baby volcanic island rose from the sea out of a volcanic blast in the Bonin Islands about 620 miles (1,000 kilometers) south of Tokyo, on the western edge of the Pacific "Ring of Fire," a hotbed of seismic activity. Named Niijima, the newcomer boiled the sea and spewed steam, ash and lava fragments into the air.

Some thought the small black cone - which sprouted just offshore of a larger volcanic island called Nishino-shima - might slip back into the sea, vanishing under pounding waves. But Niijima kept growing.
Cloud Lightning

Baseball-sized hail, heavy rain and tornadoes pound the Midwest and Southern U.S. states

Thunderstorms were crawling across a large swath of the Midwest and South on Thursday, spawning suspected tornadoes in Missouri and Texas, and slamming several states with large hail and heavy rain that prompted a handful of water rescues.

Four people were injured in Texas when a suspected tornado destroyed a farmhouse and a mobile home Thursday night near Merit, about 40 miles northeast of Dallas. Hunt County Sheriff Randy Meeks said the injuries weren't life-threatening, though he didn't have details.

Storms pummeled the North Texas college city of Denton with hail as large as baseballs, leading to reports of broken windows and other damage. The National Weather Service in Tulsa noted reports of hail up to the size of ping pong balls and strong wind gusts.


Beekeeper loses all his 500,000 honeybees due to long harsh winter in Holland, Michigan

Beekeepers in West Michigan are calling it a 'crisis', which has only gotten worse from several months of extreme cold.
A local beekeeper who lost all of his honeybees this winter and he says it's happening across the state.

Anyone can look at Don Lam's beehive and see piles of dead honeybees. However, for Lam, each hive also tells the story of a struggle to survive. "They vibrate their wing muscles and that vibration is similar to shivering," says Lam, a beekeeper in Holland.

It was a fight that his nearly half a million honeybees lost to a long, harsh winter. "They had eaten there way all the way to the top, had run out of food, and they couldn't move over because it was too cold," says Lam. "In some cases they froze to death because the cluster got too small and in other cases they starved to death."

Comment: See also: The death and global extinction of honeybees

Arrow Down

Sinkhole moves closer to Gulfport, Mississippi homes as others appear nearby

Julie Dean says she is getting frustrated with the City of Gulfport in trying to get a sink hole repaired in her backyard. The hole is deep, and Dean says the sink hole swallowed her six foot gate.

"This past Friday, after the heavy rain, the hole opened up a lot larger than it has ever been before, and now it's feet from my home. I contacted the drainage department and the Mayor's office Friday when it happened," said Dean." No one came by, no one called. Monday came; I contacted the drainage department and the Mayor's office. No one came by, no one called. Finally yesterday, Tuesday April 1, someone came and put up a very large fence around our sink hole that is about to swallow two homes."

You can see that other sink holes have popped up in the neighborhood. Across the street from Dean's home there's a smaller sink hole. Next door to that, another sink hole and two more in the front yard of Jason Geddings home. He says the city filled one hole a few months ago, but two more popped up.