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Tue, 14 Jul 2020
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Snowflake Cold

Temperatures drop below freezing in Queensland as snow blankets parts of Australia

A kangaroo (pictured) shivered through  freezing conditions in Wadbiliga National Park near Nimmitabel in the NSW region of Monaro on Saturday
© EPA
A kangaroo (pictured) shivered through freezing conditions in Wadbiliga National Park near Nimmitabel in the NSW region of Monaro on Saturday
Parts of Australia have shivered through their coldest night of the year so far as temperatures plummeted below 0C.

It was a chilly start to the working week, with most capital cities across the nation still in the single digit temperatures at 8am on Monday.

South-east Queensland shivered through a second consecutive morning of freezing temperatures after 30 towns across the region recorded their coldest temperatures of the year on Sunday.

Residents in the state's Southern Downs region felt the the biggest brunt of the winter chill on Monday, where Applethorpe woke up to a frosty -2.1C while Warwick recorded -1.1C.

Wellcamp Airport recorded -1.4C at 5.20am, while further north the mercury dropped to 0.5C in Kingaroy.

Brisbane airport dropped to a low of 7C, while the CBD was slightly warmer at 8.1C, two degrees lower than average.

Cloud Lightning

US woman struck by lightning while inside her home

Klopf
© ABC News
Shelby Klopf, 23, recounted the moments leading up to and immediately after getting struck by lightning in her home to ABC reporters.
A woman in Bellingham, Massachusetts, is lucky to be alive after being struck by lightning inside her own home during a thunderstorm on July 1.

A simple on switch of a lamp nearly proved fatal for a Massachusetts woman on Wednesday when a jolt of electricity from a nearby lightning strike came through the house's wiring.

"I'm just very happy to be alive and I'm happy to be coming home to my children tonight, because it could have gone a very different way," Shelby Klopf said after returning home the night of the accident.

Info

Ice Age Farmer Report: UNBELIEVABLE: Gov. forces farms to shut down - Food shortages imminent

food lack
A controlled demolition of our global food supply is taking place at a staggering rate: Ontario FORCES closure of farms. China BANS sale of live poultry. Aldi Sud SHAMES customers for buying meat. MILLIONS of pounds of seed potatoes are DISCARDED in a giant hole. One could not shut down food production more rapidly than is NOW taking place -- we must all grow food immediately for our families and communities. Spread the word.


Sources

Umbrella

FOOT of rain in 2 hours floods Khambhaliya, India

floods khambhaliya

Flooding in Khambhaliya
As the Southwest monsoon remained active over Saurashtra and Kutch, Khambhaliya in Devbhumi Dwarka was deluged with 11.49 inches of rainfall between 6 pm and 8 pm on Sunday, prompting the district administration to evacuate over 100 persons from the low-lying areas in the town. The taluka recorded 17 inches of rainfall in 12 hours till 8 pm.

All the 12 districts of Saurashtra-Kutch region received heavy rain. A farmer was killed after being struck by lightning in Surendranagar while a man transporting carcasses of domestic animals went missing after being washed away in a flooded causeway in Rajkot city.


Ranavav and Porbandar talukas in Porbandar district too reported heavy rainfall of 6 inch and 4.7 inch respectively, while Sutrapada in Gir Somnath district received 4 inches of rain till 8 pm. South Gujarat districts, including Surat, Navsari and Valsad, also received heavy downpour.


Cloud Lightning

Since May 15, lightning strikes have killed 315 in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, India

On Saturday, IMD warned that intense thunderstorms and lightning are likely over south-east Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, east Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, east Vidarbha and Odisha during the following 12 hours.
© Keshav Singh/HT file photo
On Saturday, IMD warned that intense thunderstorms and lightning are likely over south-east Uttar Pradesh, Bihar, east Rajasthan, Madhya Pradesh, Chhattisgarh, Jharkhand, east Vidarbha and Odisha during the following 12 hours.
Weather conditions that are forming certain kinds of clouds and bountiful rains in the region that are encouraging paddy farmers to be out in the field planting the crop have together resulted in a quiet tragedy in east Uttar Pradesh and Bihar that has gone almost unnoticed during the Covid-19 crisis -- death from lightning strikes.

There were 26 deaths on Thursday in Bihar alone from such strikes (or flashes as they are called scientifically). On Friday, 15 people were killed in lightning strikes in different districts of the state. Another 21 people lost their lives and over 40 were injured due to lightning amid heavy rain and thunderstorms in seven districts of Bihar on Saturday. And at least 253 more people have lost their lives to lightning strikes and 49 have been injured in the past one and half months with 90% of the deaths recorded in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, according to data from the National Disaster Management Authority. The injured are undergoing treatment in local hospitals. Most of the casualties are farmers and labourers who were doing agriculture-related work in fields. Chief minister Nitish Kumar has expressed grief over the loss of lives. He has announced an ex-gratia of four lakh rupees each to the next of the kin of the deceased. Kumar has ordered free treatment of injured persons.

Attention

Over 100 killed in monsoon landslide at jade mine in Myanmar - death toll reaches 172 (UPDATE)

myanmar mine landslide july 2020
© (AP Photo / Zaw Moe Htet)
Rescue workers use poles to carry a body shrouded in blue and red plastic sheet Thursday, July 2, 2020, in Hpakant, Kachin State, Myanmar. At least 162 people were killed Thursday in a landslide at a jade mine in northern Myanmar, the worst in a series of deadly accidents at such sites in recent years that critics blame on the government's failure to take action against unsafe conditions.

A landslide caused by monsoon rains in Myanmar has killed no less than 113 people, the country's emergency services said on Thursday.

Earlier in the day, the Xinhua news agency reported a death toll of 96.
The landslide came at about 8 a.m. local time (1:30 GMT) at a jade mine near the Hpakant township, located in the Kachin state.

Comment: Other news services have highlighted the fact that this landslide is one of many similar accidents at mines in Myanmar, noting that the industry is unregulated and exploits those who live in extreme poverty:
At least 162 people were killed Thursday in a landslide at a jade mine in northern Myanmar, the worst in a series of deadly accidents at such sites in recent years that critics blame on the government's failure to take action against unsafe conditions.

The Myanmar Fire Service Department, which coordinates rescues and other emergency services, announced about 12 hours after the morning disaster that 162 bodies were recovered from the landslide in Hpakant, the center of the world's biggest and most lucrative jade mining industry. [..]

The most detailed estimate of Myanmar's jade industry said it generated about $31 billion in 2014. Hpakant is a rough and remote area in Kachin state, 600 miles north of Myanmar's biggest city, Yangon. [..]

The London-based environmental watchdog Global Witness said the accident "is a damning indictment of the government"s failure to curb reckless and irresponsible mining practices in Kachin state's jade mines."
Update: Elevenmyanmar.com reports on July 4:
Hpakant landslide death toll rises to 172

Hpakant landslide

Hpakant landslide
The total death toll from Hpakant landslide has reached 172, and search and rescue operations for the missing people are suspended due to the landslide risk, according to the local administrative organizations and rescue teams.

Myo Myint, deputy head of Hpakant Township Red Cross Association said: "We have to suspend search and rescue operations due to heavy rains and the landslide risk. Today, the bodies of 11 victims were recovered. According to the residents, the number of missing people is expected to exceed 250. The missing people may be buried in the mud. Search and rescue operations will continue tomorrow if the weather is fine."

Waikhar village administrator U Kyaw Min said: "The bodies of 67 victims killed in the landslide were buried. They are not ownerless. Ward administrators are still compiling the list of missing people."

Upper House MP U Cho (aka) U Khin Maung Myint said: "The bodies of victims who have the families are cremated. We are going to search for the ownerless dead bodies by sending their photos to other jade mining sites. Plan is under way to designate a no-go area for the dangerous mining sites. It has been raining here since 10 days. The main cause of this tragic incident is linked to excessive jade mining. I would like to request the people not to come to Hpakant in the rainy season."

Kachin State government donated Ks 50 million, Northern Command, Ks 50 million, Hpakant Gem Association, Ks 50 million and the KNGPC, Ks 10 million.

The army is planning to provide rice and other relief assistance to the victims.

According to the records, many scavengers died due to the landslides since 2000. Since 2010, the death toll from the landslides have killed around 100 to 300 every year. In December, 2015, the collapse of waste piles killed 114 scavengers. In 2020, nearly 30 people died due to landslides and the collapse of mud lakes.

According to the records of Kachin State government, there were 19 landslides in Hpakant Township in 2019, resulting in 93 deaths and 14 injuries.

Hpakant Township sees around 300,000 migrant workers coming from the four corners of the country.



Attention

Rare Sowerby's beaked whale dies after becoming stranded in Wicklow Harbor, Ireland

The male Sowerby's beaked whale was spotted in distress in Wicklow Harbor on Saturday.
© IRISH WHALE AND DOLPHIN GROUP TWITTER
The male Sowerby's beaked whale was spotted in distress in Wicklow Harbor on Saturday.
The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) said that a male Sowerby's beaked whale was spotted in distress in Wicklow Harbor on Saturday morning after it had appeared to lose its bearings.

A rare whale has died after it became stranded in an Irish harbor on Saturday.

The Irish Whale and Dolphin Group (IWDG) said that a male Sowerby's beaked whale was spotted in distress in Wicklow Harbor on Saturday morning after it had appeared to lose its bearings.

Sowerby's beaked whales are normally found in the North Atlantic and the one found in Wicklow Harbor was unable to survive in the shallower waters of the Irish Sea.


Arrow Down

Six people killed and one missing after landslide during heavy rainfall in Bajhang, Nepal

landslide
The landslide has displaced 400 people in the settlement and put 45 other households at risk of being swept away.

At least six people died and a person went missing in a landslide that occurred in Bajhang district on Saturday morning. Among the deceased, four are of the same family.

The landslide, which occurred at Mallesi Village in Ward No. 8 of Kedarsiyun Rural Municipality at around 1am, swept away 18 houses and damaged two others, locals say.

Rammati Jethara, 40, her 12-year-old son Prayag, her two daughters Shanti, 14, and Ashmita, 16, and 80-year-old Dale Jethara and 13-year-old Santu Jethara were buried to death, according to Suresh Jethara, a local resident.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning strikes kill at least 43 people in a day in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar, India

Rainfall was recorded at isolated places in Uttar Pradesh, where at least 23 people were killed and 29 others injured after being struck by lightning.

Rainfall was recorded at isolated places in Uttar Pradesh, where at least 23 people were killed and 29 others injured after being struck by lightning. Representative image
North India witnessed predominantly sultry weather, with Punjab and Haryana recording above-normal day temperatures.

At least 43 people were killed after being struck by lightning in Uttar Pradesh and Bihar as rains and thunderstorm occurred in several parts of the country on Saturday, officials said.

Instances of wall collapse, uprooting of trees and waterlogging were reported in Maharashtra as heavy rains lashed large parts of the western state, including Mumbai, for the second day on Saturday. However, there were no casualties.

North India witnessed predominantly sultry weather, with Punjab and Haryana recording above-normal day temperatures.

In the national capital, the mercury oscillated between 37 and 40 degrees Celsius in most parts of the city.

Light rains and cloudy skies over the next three-four days are expected to keep the mercury in check in the national capital, Meteorological department officials said.

Comment: See in addition this report about fatalities from a day earlier: Lightning strikes kill 8 more in Bihar, India - death toll reaches over 100 in a week for the state


Snowflake

Big July snowstorm at ski resort in southern Norway - at least 14 inches dumped

snow

Summer snow in southern Norway
The Fonna (Folgefonn) Glacier in Norway was closed today due to a big snowstorm that deposited at least 35cm (14 inches) of fresh snow on the area (pictured above this morning).

The road up to the glacier was closed due to the snow.

Fonna is one of three glacier areas currently open to skiers in Norway and one of 11 in Europe.

It opened for the season about two months ago after teams took around two months to dig out exceptionally deep snow burying the road to it.