Welcome to Sott.net
Fri, 26 Feb 2021
The World for People who Think

Earth Changes


Rare multiple waterspouts filmed in Rio Grande do Sul, Brazil

© Everton Luís Sparremberger
Multiple tornadoes have been recorded in the Lagoa dos Patos region in the past few hours. Tornadoes over water (waterspouts) were observed in municipalities such as Tavares and Mostardas. The phenomena caused no damage or casualties.


Texas blizzard has now produced a 'snownado'


A "Snownado" in East Texas
Things are bad in Texas right now. There's a massive blizzard blanketing the state, along with single-digit temperatures and statewide blackouts.

But perhaps nothing was as terrifying as seeing the word "Snownado" come across my Twitter timeline.

In the East Texas town of Gun Barrell City witnesses recorded what looked like a tornado in the middle of the blizzard. The now-dubbed "Snownado" swirled above Cedar Creek Lake for a bit before dissipating.

Here is a video capturing the event that was thankfully uploaded to the Internet:

Arrow Down

3 more people die in avalanches in the U.S. - total of 25 for the season

This image provided by Colorado Avalanche Information Center shows an avalanche that killed an unidentified snowboarder on Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021, near the town of Winter Park in Colorado.

This image provided by Colorado Avalanche Information Center shows an avalanche that killed an unidentified snowboarder on Sunday, Feb. 14, 2021, near the town of Winter Park in Colorado.
The deaths of two Colorado men caught in avalanches and a third in Montana over the frigid Presidents Day weekend show how backcountry skiers and others in the Rocky Mountain wilderness risk triggering weak layers of snow that have created the most hazardous conditions in a decade, forecasters say.

At least 25 people have been killed in avalanches in the United States this year — more than the 23 who died last winter. Typically, 27 people die in avalanches in the U.S. annually.

Avalanche forecasters say they have rarely seen the danger as high as it is now — and it will grow as more snow moves into the Rockies, adding weight and stress on a weak, granular base layer of snow that's susceptible to breaking apart and triggering especially wide slides on steep slopes.

Arrow Down

Three children killed by landslide in Pakistan

Three children were crushed to death by a landslide in Rahim Yar Khan Tuesday.

According to police, the accident took place in Firoza's Chak 239.

The police said the children were playing when a landslide struck. They died on the spot. Their bodies have been shifted to a hospital.

The deceased were aged between three and eight years, the law enforcers said.

Snowflake Cold

Startling numbers reveal the rarity of the frigid temperatures across much of the US

A woman walks through falling snow in San Antonio, Texas, the United States on Sunday, February 14, 2021
© Eric Gay/AP Photo
A woman walks through falling snow in San Antonio, Texas, the United States on Sunday, February 14, 2021
A historic cold outbreak has led in the coldest air in decades across the United States, reaching all the way to the Rio Grande and bringing record amounts of snow and ice to the Deep South.

Here are some of the records that have been broken across the United States by the cold weather as well as some of the more interesting statistics recorded due to the extreme temperatures.

Extreme cold yet a record high

There was a 130-degree spread in temperatures across the US yesterday, from 90 degrees in Florida to 40 below zero in Wisconsin and Minnesota.

And while hundreds of record lows are being set in the central US, Miami hit a record high heat index of 91 on Sunday.

Comment: Ice, snow, bitter cold hits millions as major storm pummels swaths of U.S.


Heavy snowfall grips Istanbul, Turkey

Istanbul snowstorm
© AA Photo
Municipality crews throw salt on overpasses during snowfall at the Cevizlibağ metrobus station in Istanbul, Turkey, Feb. 14, 2021.
A long-rumored and feared cold front coupled with heavy snowfall arrived in Istanbul late Saturday after moving in from the country's northwestern Thrace region on the way.

By midnight, much of the city was covered in white as the Asian districts of the 15-million megapolis were last to receive heavy snowfall.

The Turkish State Meteorological Service (TSMS) and Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality's (IBB) Disaster Coordination Center (AKOM) had previously warned Istanbulites that the snowfall could last for five days with a severe drop in temperatures. Despite the ongoing weekend and nighttime curfews throughout the nation, traffic levels remain high due to decreased public transport ridership over COVID-19.

A blanket of snow covered much of Istanbul on Sunday morning, which weather forecasts say will increase in density throughout the day. Except for brief respites, the snowfall is expected to linger until Thursday.


Shallow M6.7 earthquake reported off Vanuatu

Vanuatu earthquake map

Earthquake data:

Date & time: 16 Feb 2021 11:49 am (GMT +11) local time (16 Feb 2021 00:49 GMT)
Magnitude: 6.7
Depth: 14.0 km
Epicenter latitude / longitude: 17.75°S / 167.76°E (Coral Sea, Vanuatu)
Primary data source: USGS

Snowflake Cold

Over two million Texans lose power during winter storm Uri, rolling blackouts implemented as record cold strains grid to maximum

texas winter storm Uri freeway closed
© Newsweek
Over two million homes and businesses in Texas are without power Monday morning as winter storm Uri sweeps across the central United States.

"The agency that oversees Texas' electric grid declared an 'energy emergency alert three' early Monday after the grid experienced a systemwide failure," the Weather Channel reported.

The alert turned into rotating outages that are likely to continue through Tuesday morning, according to grid managers.

About 2.5 million people were without power as of 9:00 a.m., the outlet tweeted:

Comment: RT follows up:
"Extreme weather conditions caused many generating units - across fuel types - to trip offline and become unavailable," the company said in a statement, urging energy conservation as the power grid has become more and more strained. Energy use has been at record levels in the state as they, as well as the central US, are facing unusually cold weather.

These rolling blackouts reportedly last anywhere from 10 minutes to an hour.

More than two million homes were reported to be without power in the state on Monday morning, according to poweroutage.us.

The last time rolling outages were implemented in Texas was during a massive storm in February 2011.

Video out of Texas has shown the state blanketed with snow and some roadways dangerously covered in ice. For the first time ever, every county in the state was under a winter storm warning going into Sunday evening.

Road conditions have left many roads impassable and led to numerous crashes, especially on highways. Unlike states that are used to colder weather and heavy snowfall, Texas is facing an unusual emergency as much of the state does not have the resources to handle extreme winter conditions, leaving roads slick and icy, and many homes not insulated enough.

Footage of multiple highway crashes have hit social media with interstate roads either covered in snow or ice. Residents are being urged by local officials to stay home and not travel.

Snowflake Cold

Manitoba shatters cold records, sets 20 new lows

Manitoba has broken records for the lowest temperature this snap past Saturday. The extreme temperature in the region setting 20 lows.

Although temperatures around this time of the year have often averaged - 20 C, Winnipeg dropped down to -38.8 C, which saw it break an 1879 record by 1 C, according to Brian Luzny, an environment Canada Met.

In the meantime, Shoal Lake broke its 1970 record by close to 6 C, while Norway House registered its recent low of - 44 C, which is lower than its last record by 5 C. Essentially, it is the coldest area in the Province. Luzny noted that they are currently breaking records each day.

Snowflake Cold

Thames freezes over for 'first time in decades' as Baltic chill engulfs capital

Thames Frozen
Locals said they had never seen the river freeze like this before
A large part of the River Thames has frozen over in what locals say is the first time in more than a decade as a sub-zero cold snap continues.

Temperatures in London dropped to -2C as Storm Darcy - dubbed 'The Beast of the East 2' swept through the country. As a result of the bitter chill from the Baltic, a section of the Thames has frozen over at Teddington, south west London. The extreme freeze meant the UK experienced the coldest February night for 25 years - with temperatures plummeting to below -20C in some parts of the country.

In the capital and the South East, train services have been cancelled and roads left in treacherous conditions.

Comment: See also: