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Attention

Elephant kills its mahout and runs off into the jungle with tourist family still sitting on its back in Thailand

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The elephant 'went berserk' during a guided tour in Chiang Mai, Thailand, and killed its handler before running off into the jungle with a family-of-three from China on its back (stock image)
Thailand's use of elephants as tourist attractions has come under fire yet again after an animal killed its keeper and ran off with a family still on its back during a jungle tour in Chiang Mai.

The elephant reportedly 'went berserk', during a group ride on Wednesday, attacking and killing its rider and taking off into the jungle with three terrified Chinese tourists, police said

The Chinese family, two parents and their young child, were rescued soon after as other elephant keepers came to the rescue.

'The mahout [elephant keeper] who was killed was not familiar with the elephant. They (the tourists) are safe now,' Colonel Thawatchai Thepboon, police commander of Mae Wang district in Chiang Mai province said.

Police said the incident took place at 9.30am local time as a Chinese family of three - a father, mother and a young child - took a ride on the back of a male elephant.

Comment: See also these reports from last year: Elephant kills mahout in India

Get off my back! Elephant tramples another mahout to death in India - third killing in less than a week

Elephant gores owner to death in Kerala, India - 4th mahout from the region to die in a fortnight

Second mahout to be killed by elephant within 5 days in Kerala, India


Fire

Reunion Island volcano erupts again


The volcano on Reunion Island erupted Monday after a dramatic increase in seismic activity throughout the day. The Piton de la Fournaise captured the world's attention last month when it erupted after beach cleaners found a piece of wreckage believed to have come from a missing airliner.

On Monday night tourists flocked to good viewing spots to watch the volcano's eruption. Local residents and tourists hiked about an hour up a nearby mountain at night to watch the volcano. The volcano erupted throughout the night spewing lava, fire and red smoke for hours.

Comment: Elsewhere, there has been increased activity recently at the Cotopaxi volcano in Ecuador which is spewing out huge columns of ash, as is Mexico's Colima volcano.


Attention

Dead humpback whale winched out of water near Stegna, Poland

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© PAP/Piotr Wittman
The whale was winched out on Tuesday.
A 20 ton whale which was beached on the Baltic coast in northern Poland was lifted out of the water on Tuesday afternoon.

The first crane brought in on Tuesday morning turned out to be too weak to lift the dead aquatic mammal.

However, the second machine completed the task. It was no easy feat however, as gases which had accumulated inside the animal over the last couple of warm days posed a risk of the whale exploding.

Marine biologists from the station on Hel Peninsula were called out on Saturday to deal with the dead whale washed up on one of the sandbanks near the locality of Stegna, eastwards of Gdańsk.

It is suspected that this might be the humpback seen some months ago in the Gulf of Gdańsk.

The conditions in the partly shallow gulf are far too difficult for whales, and this one probably couldn't find its way out on to the open water.

Cloud Precipitation

Floods in North Korea kill 40, strands thousands; 6 inches of rain in just 3 hours

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© Reuters
Residents attempt to clear flood debris from under a bridge in the city of Rajin in North Korea. Heavy rain in North Korea killed 40 people, stranded thousands in flash floods and caused "massive" damage on the weekend, the International Federation of the Red Cross and North Korean media said.
Heavy rain in North Korea killed 40 people, stranded thousands in flash floods and caused "massive" damage on the weekend, the International Federation of the Red Cross said and North Korean media said.

More than 11,000 people were forced from their homes or otherwise affected by the floods, which hit the northeastern city of Rajin, near the border with Russia and China, on Saturday and Sunday, Hler Gudjonsson, a spokesman for the Red Cross in Beijing told Reuters.

Rajin is the capital of the Rason Special Economic Zone in North Hamgyong Province.

"It rained really hard, and fast. On Saturday morning the city was flooded. Cars were wading through water like boats," a source who was in area when it flooded told Reuters.

It was not clear what impact the rain would have in a country that said in June it was suffering from its worst drought in a century. South Korea said in July some rain had fallen in the North, easing conditions.

Wolf

Wolf pack seen in California for the first time in 100 years

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A pack of wolves has been spotted in Northern California for the first time in nearly 100 years.
The appearance of the five grey wolf pups and two adults could signal a return of the animals, which have not been found in the state since 1924.

California Department of Fish and Wildlife first discovered the pack this month in Siskiyou County near the Oregon border using a remote camera.

The wolves have been named the "Shasta Pack" after a nearby mountain.

"This news is exciting for California," Charlton Bonham of the California Department of Fish and Wildlife said on Thursday. "We knew wolves would eventually return home to the state and it appears now is the time."

Arrow Down

Sinkhole swallows people at Chinese bus stop: Video footage

© RT
CCTV footage has emerged from China showing the shocking moment when four people fell into a sinkhole as the pavement suddenly gave away beneath them.The surveillance footage shows several commuters waiting for a bus in Harbin, in northeast Heilongjiang Province on Saturday, when a sinkhole opens up in the pavement, swallowing them.


Four people fell directly into the hole, suffering minor injuries, according to local reports. The video also shows a woman trapped on a steel beam just below the pavement. A group of bystanders can be seen helping to rescue the victims. Local media reported the sinkhole was two meters deep.The cause of the incident is under investigation.

Comment: Why are so many sinkholes happening all over the world recently? There is a new hypothesis in the book: Earth Changes and the Human Cosmic Connection.

See also:


Sun

NOAA: World breaks new heat records in July


A child cools off in a fountain next to the Manzanares river in Madrid on July 15, 2015
The world broke new heat records in July, marking the hottest month in history and the warmest first seven months of the year since modern record-keeping began in 1880, US authorities said Thursday.

The findings by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration showed a troubling trend, as the planet continues to warm due to the burning of fossil fuels, and scientists expect the scorching temperatures to get worse.

"The world is warming. It is continuing to warm. That is being shown time and time again in our data," said Jake Crouch, physical scientist at NOAA's National Centers for Environmental Information.


"Now that we are fairly certain that 2015 will be the warmest year on record, it is time to start looking at what are the impacts of that? What does that mean for people on the ground?" he told reporters.

The month's average temperature across land and sea surfaces worldwide was 61.86 Fahrenheit (16.61 Celsius), marking the hottest July ever.

The previous record for July was set in 1998.

Comment: All over the world 'extreme' weather records are being broken! See also: SOTT Earth Changes Summary - July 2015: Extreme Weather and Planetary Upheaval


To understand what's going on, check out our book explaining how all these events are part of a natural climate shift, and why it's taking place now: Earth Changes and the Human-Cosmic Connection.

Check out previous installments in this series - now translated into multiple languages - and more videos from SOTT Media here or here.

You can help us chronicle the Signs of the Times by sending video suggestions to [email protected]


Magnet

Scientists studying swarm of earthquakes in Northern Nevada - 5,700 since last July

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© University of Nevada-Reno
Nevada regional earthquakes in the last 14 days.
Scientists at the Nevada Seismological Laboratory say there has been a "swarm" of more than 5700 earthquakes in northwestern Nevada since last July. They include 21 4.0 temblors.

In 2008, the community of Mogul, west of Reno, also experienced an earthquake swarm.

Graham Kent is Director of the lab on the University of Nevada-Reno campus. He says the number of tremors in that swarm pales in comparison to this one.

"A magnitude 5.0 was the largest and a couple fours's and a bunch of three's and you look back at it and go 'wow!' that was hardly anything."

Kent said this kind of seismic activity is rare anywhere. He says the location of the swarm, which is below an antelope preserve, makes it a perfect place to study earthquake behavior.

"This is a great petri dish. So, now we have this kind of gold-medal swarm going and it doesn't affect a lot of people. So, what we can learn from this, hopefully we can apply the next time there's a swarm underneath a community."

More than 200 quakes 3.0 and stronger have been measured in the Sheldon National Wildlife Refuge since last July.

Seven of them were 4.5 or stronger.

Comment: Earthquake swarm in Nevada desert intensifying


Attention

Hundreds of seabirds wash up either dead or dying along the Oregon and Southwest Washington Coast

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© Keely Chalmers/KGW
Hundreds of these birds are washing up ashore on Oregon beaches, the result of unusually warm ocean conditions.
Hundreds of birds are washing ashore either dead or dying along the Oregon and Southwest Washington Coast.

The majority of them are common murres, which are a type of large auk bird.

Researchers say that the die-off started about three weeks ago.

Since then the Wildlife Center of the North Coast, which helps rehabilitate sick or injured sea-birds, has been getting calls daily about the problem. Right now - they are caring for close to a hundred birds- with about ten common murres coming in daily. Almost all of them are starving.

"They're totally emaciated, sometimes there's injuries, other times there's not," said Laurel Berblinger, a volunteer at the center.


Bizarro Earth

Sewage pollutes Honolulu's Waikiki Beach after floods from Tropical Storm Kilo

Nearly 2,000 tons of sewage has polluted Honolulu's renowned Waikiki Beach due to heavy downpour brought by Tropical Storm Kilo. Flooded with rainwater, the local sewer system spilled out onto the streets and drained into the surf.

Wastewater erupted in fountains from manholes and streamed down into the ocean through the beach area of the popular tourist destination hosting some of Hawaii's biggest hotels, Lori Kahikina, Honolulu director of environmental services, told reporters according to NBC affiliate KHNL.

The now-closed beach area is nearly 6.5 kilometers long, stretching from Kapahulu Avenue in Waikiki to Point Panic in Kakaako.