Earth Changes

Cloud Precipitation

Thousands evacuated as Typhoon Rammasun pounds Philippines

Typhoon Rammasun
© AFP Photo/Charism Sayat
Residents ride on a truck as they are evacuated by authorities from approaching Typhoon Rammasun in Legazpi City, southeast of Manila on July 15, 2014

Tens of thousands of people in the Philippines hunkered down in evacuation centres while three people were reported missing Tuesday as a typhoon pounded its eastern coast amid warnings of giant storm surges and heavy floods.

The eye of Typhoon Rammasun struck Legazpi city in the eastern Bicol region in the early evening, with Manila and other heavily populated regions expecting to be hit on Wednesday afternoon, the state weather service said.

"Roofing sheets are flying off the tops of houses here... the wind is whistling," Joey Salceda, the governor of Albay province in Bicol said over ABS-CBN television.

He said there had been no reports of deaths while damage to the region -- an impoverished farming and fishing region of 5.4 million people -- was expected to be "moderate".

However, Bicol police said three local men were listed as missing off the island of Catanduanes on Tuesday, a day after they pushed out to sea to fish and failed to return.

The Philippines is hit by about 20 major storms a year, many of them deadly. The Southeast Asian archipelago is often the first major landmass to be struck after storm build above the warm Pacific Ocean waters.

Cloud Precipitation

Berthoud, Colorado pummeled with hail storm

Cell phone video captures a car being pummeled by hail.


Dead 20ft minke whale found on Isle of Man beach

Minke whales can grow up to 10m (33ft) in length and weigh up to 10 tonnes
A six-metre (20ft) minke whale has been found dead on an Isle of Man beach, the Manx Wildlife Trust (MWT) has confirmed.

The juvenile whale was discovered at Glen Maye on Saturday evening, the trust's marine officer Lara Howe said.

The Manx Society for Marine Conservation and MWT have carried out tests and believe it died from "natural causes."

A decision on how to safely dispose of the carcass will be taken later.

The Manx government is due to decide whether to bury the whale or leave it in the hope the high tide will wash it away.


Record low temps hit Winnipeg in July!

It's not the kind of record you want to be hearing about in the middle of July.

David Phillips, senior Climatologist for Environment Canada, joined Richard and Kathy on Winnipeg's Morning News. He confirms that yesterday's high, 15.7 degrees Celsius, was the coldest July 13th in Winnipeg since 1884.

He puts the reasoning behind a type of polar vortex - that cold low which is sitting over the heart of North America.

However, the good news is that it will be short lived according Phillips. He says starting tomorrow the mercury will continue to rise and by the weekend we should be hitting temps around 30 degrees.

That's, not the end of it either. Phillips forecasts the heat to continue over the next couple of months.
Cloud Lightning

3,400 lightning strikes in Central Oregon - dozens of wildfires erupt

Mt. Bachelor opened its mtn. bike park for the season Sunday -- but this is a far more electrifying moment caught on camera, a view of lightning appearing to hit the summit of South Sister
Thunderstorms rolled north through Central Oregon Sunday afternoon, accompanied by 3,400 lightning strikes that had crews scrambling to hit dozens of new, mostly small fires across the region -- some threatening homes on the Warm Springs Indian Reservation. A Klamath County fire grew to 600 acres and burned structures.

About 3,400 lighting strikes pelted the region between early Sunday morning and the evening hours, resulting in 65 smoke reports by early evening to the Central Oregon Interagency Dispatch Center in Prineville, said spokeswoman Jean Nelson-Dean.

Nearly half of those resulted from an intense late-afternoon thunderstorm that rolled through the Ochoco National Forest and Prineville District of the BLM, as well as private lands in Crook County, she said.

The largest new fire in Central Oregon was burning at the extreme southern end, four miles northeast of Cabin Lake, near Forest Service Road 18, about three miles north of the Klamath-Deschutes County border.

That fire was estimated at about 40 to 60 acres, with five engines, a 20-person crew and a water tender working the fire, along with a pair of single-engine air tankers (SEAT planes) making retardant drops.

Arrow Down

Ten metre wide sinkhole closes Gold Coast Highway in Australia

© Channel Nine
A sink hole has created traffic chaos on the Gold Coast.

A major water main break has led to a 10 metre sink hole on the Gold Coast Highway and it could take another 24 hours to completely repair the site.

Police spent hours at the site directing traffic around the giant hole, which reduced the Gold Coast Highway at Margaret Street in Broadbeach to one lane on Sunday.

Police signed off from the area just before 2pm, but repairs are on-going.

Gold Coast Council staff have been on the scene since early Monday morning, working to patch the road.

Motorists are still advised to avoid the area.

On Monday morning, a Gold Coast City Council spokesman said the site was cleared overnight.

Council crews were waiting for Energex to disconnect utilities so they could get in and repair the pipe.

It would take another 24 hours before the site was completely repaired but the spokesman stressed residents still had water supplies.

One lane of the Gold Coast Highway remained closed on Monday morning.

Comment: As with many of these water main break and pipe bursting explanations for the sinkholes phenomena, quite often nowadays it's really the other way round, the sinkholes open up first then cause the pipe fractures. The earth is opening up! See chart below.


Japan still bracing for violent aftershocks from deadly 2011 earthquake

© Unknown
Seismologists said an earthquake that struck near Japan's shuttered Fukushima nuclear site early Saturday was an aftershock of the tremor that sparked 2011's deadly tsunami, and warned of more to come.

The strong 6.8-magnitude earthquake off the Pacific coast of northeastern Japan caused a minor tsunami in the early hours, though authorities lifted all weather warnings roughly two hours later.

Seismologist Yasuhiro Yoshida of the Japan Meteorological Agency said it was a delayed tectonic reaction to the 9.0-magnitude quake which left the Fukushima nuclear power plant in a meltdown crisis after the coast was ravaged by monster tidal waves in March 2011.

"There are fears that relatively large earthquakes will occasionally occur in the ocean area where aftershocks of the great earthquake continue," he said.

"The aftershock activity has been steadily declining on a long-term basis. But aftershocks, accompanied by tsunamis, will still occur."

The 2011 disaster killed more than 18,000 people.

Saturday's quake measured up to four on the Japanese scale of seven in terms of intensity, and Yoshida said there was a possibility aftershocks measuring a moderate three on that scale would occur in the next two weeks.

Comment: Readers can check out a short video of this earthquake here. Some additional updates on the Fukushima disaster can be found in these related articles:


Rare albatross found 2,500 km from home in New Zealand

A rare species of albatross found injured on Chapel Street could be more than 2500km from home.

Sooty the light-mantled sooty albatross is being nursed back to health at Oropi Native Bird Rescue Haven after being discovered in very poor condition on the side of the road last month.

Haven owner Chrissy Jefferson says it's the first of this species she's encountered in her 54 years of bird rescue work in the Bay.

"They're from the Antipodes Islands, down near the Antarctic. It's very rare for them to be found here.

"It's even stranger he was found on the road; if he'd turned up on the beach, it wouldn't have been as strange."

Comment: See also: Monster storms bring rare seabird visitors to New Zealand

Alarm Clock

USGS: Earthquake Magnitue 6.4 - 83km SSE of Pondaguitan, Philippines

Earthquake 6.4 Pondaguitan, Philippines
Event Time
2014-07-14 07:59:58 UTC
2014-07-14 15:59:58 UTC+08:00 at epicente

5.696°N 126.534°E depth=22.5km (14.0mi)

Nearby Cities
83km (52mi) SSE of Pondaguitan, Philippines
101km (63mi) ESE of Caburan, Philippines
129km (80mi) SE of Malita, Philippines
141km (88mi) ESE of Malapatan, Philippines
897km (557mi) WSW of Koror Town, Palau

Scientific data
Cardboard Box

7 quakes possibly caused by fracking hit central Oklahoma within 14 hours

Fracking wells
© Unknown
Some scientists say the temblors could be connected to the oil and gas drilling method known as hydraulic fracturing, and especially the wells in which the industry disposes of its wastewater.
Seven small earthquakes have shaken central Oklahoma in a span of about 14 hours.

According to the US Geological Survey, earthquakes across Oklahoma, Texas and Kansas have increased in recent years.

Some scientists say the temblors could be connected to the oil and gas drilling method known as hydraulic fracturing, and especially the wells in which the industry disposes of its wastewater.

Sunday's quakes ranged from magnitude 2.6 to 2.9 and were centered in the Guthrie, Jones and Langston areas, 15 miles to 30 miles northeast of Oklahoma City, ABC News reported.

The USGS said the temblors were recorded between 7:57 p.m. Saturday and 9:51 a.m. Sunday. No injuries or damage were reported.