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Thu, 21 Jan 2021
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Earth Changes


Vietnamese amazed at snow-capped northern mountains during unusual cold wave

People play with snow in Bat Xat District
© VnExpress/Phu Suy Tho.
People play with snow in Bat Xat District, Lao Cai Province, January 11, 2021.
Many Vietnamese have been drawn to the northern highlands, including Sa Pa, as thick white snow blanketed the region.

Due to drizzles at low temperature, snow has covered O Quy Ho mountain pass in Lai Chau Province and Sa Pa, a popular tourist town in Lao Cai Province, since Sunday night.

At a height of 1,500 meters above sea level, Sa Pa has recorded temperatures dropping to minus one degree Celsius on Monday and in Sin Ho mountainous district of Lai Chau, to minus two degrees Celsius.

Temperatures on Mau Son Mount of Lang Son Province have risen by one to two degrees Celsius against prior days to 0.5 degrees Celsius and in Dong Van Town in Ha Giang, to two degrees Celsius.


Man dies from serious injuries following dog attack in Girona, Spain

dog attack
A 32-year-old resident of Cassa de la Selva in Girona died early in the morning of January 10 from injuries caused by a dog that attacked him.

The attack reportedly took place at around 9pm on Saturday, January 9, when the victim took a friend's dog for a walk.

The dog, an American Staffordshire Terrier, a breed which is considered to be potentially dangerous in Spain, attacked the man, causing serious injuries to his left arm.

Snowflake Cold

Spain breaks coldest temperature record AGAIN at -35.8C, just a day after new one set

Spain has just experienced a number of its coldest ever days recorded in history.

On Thursday (7 Jan), a record breaking temperature of -35.8C was registered at the Vega de Liordes weather station, situated at an altitude of 1,874 metres in the northwestern province of Leon.

The temperature was confirmed by AEMET weather agency, and just narrowly beat out the record breaking temperature recorded the day before in the eastern Pyrenees.

Record breaking temperatures

On Wednesday (6 Jan), a meteorological station in the Catalan Pyrenees recorded a temperature of -34.1C.

Comment: Spain records lowest temperature ever at -34C


Over 50,000 households hit by floods in south Thailand

Floods and landslides have struck again in southern Thailand, affecting the 4 provinces of Songkhla, Yala, Narathiwat and Pattani. Authorities report 3 people have died as a result.

Flooding began around 04 January after heavy rain influenced by the North East Monsoon and an area of low pressure off the coast of Peninsular Malaysia, where flooding has also affected thousands of people since the start of the year.

According to Thailand's Meteorological Department, in a 24 hour period to 05 January, Yala recorded 141.9mm of rain and Narathiwat 71.7mm.

According to Thailand's Department of Disaster Prevention and Mitigation (DDPM), as many as 58,497 households are affected across over 30 districts, with 907 people displaced.

Arrow Down

Deadly landslides triggered by heavy rainfall kill at least 11 in West Java Province, Indonesia

Landslide in Cimanggung District,
© BPBD Sumedang Regency
Landslide in Cimanggung District, Sumedang Regency, West Java Province, Indonesia, 09 January 2021.
At least 11 people have died after heavy rain triggered landslides in western Indonesia.

Two landslides struck in quick succession in the village of Cihanjuang in Cimanggung District, Sumedang Regency in West Java Province on 09 January 2021.

According to the country's disaster authority BNPB, the first landslide occurred around 16:00 and the second at around 19:30 local time. BNPB blamed heavy rainfall and unstable soil conditions for the landslides.


6.0-magnitude earthquake hits near Vanuatu - 2nd strong quake on the planet within 3 hours

Vanuatu is located near the Ring of Fire - an area around much of the rim of the Pacific Ocean with high seismic activity, causing regular volcanic eruptions and earthquakes.

According to the United States Geological Survey (USGS), a quake has hit 49 km east of Lakatoro, Vanuatu and 194 kilometres northwest of the island nation's capital Port Vila. The epicentre of the tremor was located at a depth of 160 kilometres.

No tsunami warning has been issued by the authorities so far.

There also have been no reports of damage or casualties caused by the tremor.

Comment: Just under 3 hours earlier a magnitude 6.1 earthquake struck Argentina. The Vanuatu quake is additionally the second magnitude 6 to hit off the island in 2 days.


M6.1 earthquake hits near San Antonio de los Cobres, Argentina

earthquake graph
© Phil McCarten / Reuters
An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.1 jolted 42 km WNW of San Antonio de los Cobres, Argentina at 0354 GMT on Sunday, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said.

The epicenter, with a depth of 202.77 km, was initially determined to be at 24.02 degrees south latitude and 66.6723 degrees west longitude.

Snowflake Cold

Cars stranded, trains affected by continued heavy snowfall across Japan - up to a meter of new snow in 24 hours

cars in snow
Vehicles were stranded and train services affected Saturday as heavy snow continued over parts of Japan, with the weather agency warning of further traffic disruption from slippery roads due to more snowfall through the weekend.

In central Japan, many cars were stuck. Around 120 vehicles were stranded on the Hokuriku Expressway in Fukui Prefecture due to an accident. About 80 cars could not move on the Noetsu Expressway in Toyama Prefecture, with a section temporarily closed, transport authorities said.

Separately, about 80 vehicles were stuck temporarily on part of the Hokuriku Expressway in Niigata Prefecture, northwest of Tokyo.

Cloud Precipitation

Motorists stuck as floods, rains lash Montego Bay, Jamaica

Several motorists have been trapped on the Long Hill main road near King Gate in Montego Bay, St James amid flood rain.

Several inches of rushing water and debris have covered the roadway which leads to Anchovy, Lethe, Wiltshire and other communities in upper St James.

Residents witnessing the frightening situation said drains which have not been cleaned for months have contributed to the problem.


Record snowfall covers Japan

Record Snowfall
© Kiyoshi Kimura
Streetcars stop their operation due to heavy snowfall in Toyama on Jan. 8.
A record amount of snowfall blanketed central Japan's Hokuriku region by the morning of Jan. 8, forcing residents to cope with slippery and treacherous snow-packed roads and sidewalks.

In Takaoka, Toyama Prefecture, the snow accumulation during the 12-hour period through the early morning totalled 59 centimeters, a record high.

In Toyama, it reached 48 cm, the highest ever for the capital of the prefecture.

As of 9 a.m., the snow cover in Himi was six times more than usual. In the town of Asahi, it was 5.5 times more than in an average year.

A cyclone in the making passed through northern Japan, causing a winter pressure pattern around the country. A cold air mass, apparently the severest of the season, has made inroads into Japan.

Because of that, areas on the Sea of Japan side from Hokkaido to Kyushu, including flatlands, are expected to experience heavy snowfall until around Jan. 10.