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Tue, 21 Feb 2017
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Flood alert issued in Hungary with melting ice causing mayhem


Floodwater in Hungary
Parts of Hungary are on flood alert, with melting ice causing mayhem.

It is the flip side of a rise in temperatures, after weeks of freezing conditions.

Some homes are submerged in the east of the country, with boats and piers also damaged..

When blocks of ice came dangerously close to a power plant, icebreaker vessels were deployed.




Snowflake

Village evacuated for fear of dam break as heavy snow and rainfall continues to hit Iran


This February 13, 2017 photo released by Iran's Tasnim news agency shows a car covered with snow in the central Iranian city of Arak.
Fears that a dam could break in southern Iran has prompted officials to evacuate a village as the country continues to be hit with heavy snowfalls not seen in years.

Reports on Monday said that officials had ordered the evacuation of Kazemabad, a small village on the outskirts of the city of Fasa, in the province of Fars.

The order came after the local authority responsible for water and sewerage management warned about a spillway failure at Salman Farsi Dam
, which is located near Fasa. Initial reports said the villagers had resisted evacuation.

Local Iranian media said Sunday that 28 out of 31 provinces were affected by heavy rain and snowfall. According to reports, around 4,500 people were attended to on the roads and some 380 people were rescued from heavy snow. One single person was hospitalized, officials said without elaborating.

Rainfall also caused power cuts in parts of the southwestern province of Khuzestan.


Camera

Stunning polar stratospheric clouds shine over Sweden, Finland

Around the Arctic Circle, observers are reporting an outbreak of polar stratospheric clouds (PSCs). "Yesterday, Feb. 13th, the sky was filled with their brilliant colors from sunrise to sunset," says Mia Stålnacke, who sends this picture from Kiruna, Sweden:
© Mia Stålnacke
These clouds are newsworthy because normally the stratosphere has no clouds at all. Home to the ozone layer, the stratosphere is arid and almost always transparent. Yet, Stålnacke says, "we've been seeing stratospheric clouds very often this winter and last."

According to multiple longtime residents of the area, the Feb 13th display was exceptional. "Everyone I spoke to agrees it was the best they had ever seen," says Chad Blakley, who operates the Lights over Lapland tour guide service in Abisko, Sweden.
© Mia Stålnacke

Question

50 dead owls seen along 20-mile stretch of Interstate-84 near Jerome, Idaho


Dead barn owl
Dozens of dead owls have been reported by drivers along Interstate-84 in southern Idaho making for an eerie stretch of road.

Over the weekend, Nichole Miller and Christina White of Boise were driving home to Boise from Twin Falls when they spotted some road kill along the interstate.

"I saw a bird on the side of the road -- I thought it was a chicken," Miller said. "But then we saw more (road kill) and I saw the stripes on the feathers and it was not a chicken."

It was definitely, an owl, she said. And it wasn't the only one.

Wolf

Dog attacks on farm livestock reach record levels in the UK

Dog attacks on livestock have reached record levels with more than 1,000 reports of sheep and cattle worrying on farms in 2016 at an estimated cost of £1.4m.

The alarming figures sparked a warning from rural insurer NFU Mutual with the firm calling on the public to do more to prevent dogs worrying livestock.

With many families expected to visit the countryside during half-term and the Easter holidays, the insurer is asking dog owners always to keep their pets on a lead.

The public has been urged to report out-of-control dogs to a local farmer or the police.

Megaphone

Mysterious boom in Ohio shakes homes, knocks items off wall

© wcpo.com
Some say it shook homes, knocked items off their walls.

Numerous people living on the west side of Hamilton reported hearing a loud boom around 5:40 p.m. Sunday. Some say it even shook their homes and knocked items off their walls.

"No other way to explain it other than a loud boom," Darryl Pies said. "It was different than firecrackers or perhaps a transformer blowing up. I mean,it was 'boom,' and a little bit of a rumble after that."

Earl Caudill said he felt it. "I felt the concussion. You could feel the concussion from it," he said. "Of course, you come out to see if you could see smoke and stuff. There was no smoke out here."

Multiple people called 911 after hearing the noise. "It shook my mom's apartment. I mean, it was huge, and now all kinds of people are saying they felt it, so it was something," one caller said. Another caller said, "It was so bad that it blew a clock off my wall."

Comment: The evening before, another loud boom was reported 180 miles away by residents of Mansfield, Ohio.


Dig

Repairs underway to large sinkhole in East Oakland, California

© Harry Harris/Bay Area News Group
A large sinkhole appeared Sunday on East 27th Street in East Oakland.
Workers from several agencies on Monday were continuing to repair a large sinkhole that appeared Sunday morning in East Oakland, damaging utility lines and partially swallowing a parked car, officials said.

The hole, about 25 feet wide, 25 feet long and 20 feet deep, opened about 9:21 a.m. in the 2600 block of East 27th Street in the lower Dimond district.

No one was in a parked 1991 BMW that was left partly submerged. It was later towed out.

On Monday, there were workers from the City of Oakland, PG&E and a private contractor at the scene. It was not known when the hole would be refilled and all repairs completed but crews were working around the clock to expedite the repairs, officials said..

Some underground sewer and storm drain lines were damaged as well as the roadway, officials said, but the extent of the damage or how many users were affected was not immediately available.

Red Flag

Huge reservoir of melting carbon discovered under western US

© Reuters
A reservoir of melting carbon covering an area almost the size of Mexico has been discovered beneath the western US, casting doubt over previous estimates of carbon levels inside the Earth.

The discovery was made by a team from the University of Royal Holloway London using the world's largest array of seismic sensors that identified the carbon from vibrations generated in Earth's upper mantle.

The reservoir is believed to have been formed when a Pacific tectonic plate was forced underneath the western US, according to the research published in Earth and Planetary Science Letters.

"It is a result of one of the tectonic plates of the Pacific Ocean forced underneath the western US, undergoing partial melting, thanks to gasses like CO2 and H2O contained in the minerals dissolved in it," study author Dr Sash Hier-Majumder of Royal Holloway said in a statement.

Attention

Chef is attacked by a wild beaver near Kirriemuir, Scotland

Wildlife experts yesterday issued a safety warning - after a chef was attacked by a wild beaver.

Ross Smith was driving along a country road with his friends when they spotted a mysterious brown creature on the grass verge.

When the 20-year-old got out of the car and went to investigate, the animal turned nasty and, snarling, leapt at him.

The 3ft long beaver is believed to be one of a colony of the animals living wild in Lintrathen Loch, near Kirriemuir in Angus.

Extraordinary mobile phone camera footage of Mr Smith's encounter now been posted on the internet, prompting a leading academic to warn the public not to approach the furry rodents.

Although it is not clear what provoked the beaver to attack, one of his friends can be heard asking: 'Is that a platypus?'

Mr Smith, who works in a cafe in Edzell, captured the encounter on his mobile phone and shared it online.

Fortunately he was not hurt by the animal, which he estimated to be about a 3ft (1 metre) long and to weigh about 25-30kg (55-66lbs).

Wolf

Woman, 75, dies after mauling by family mastiff in Queens, New York

A 75-year-old Queens woman died Monday after she was mauled by her dog, a hulking mixed-breed mastiff she'd planned to put to death because he was too aggressive, police sources and neighbors said.

Victim Louise Hermida's autistic 39-year-old son, Daniel Ferraro, was also bitten by the bloodthirsty pet, named Boss, and suffered minor leg injuries.

The horrifying attack by the powerful mastiff-Great Dane mix happened just past midnight in the family's Long Island City home on 27th St., neighbors said.

Hermida was bitten in her upper torso and found at the bottom of the basement steps in her two-story townhouse, sources said.