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Wed, 28 Jul 2021
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Earth Changes

Cloud Lightning

34% rise in lightning strikes across India in 2020-21 over previous years, leaving 1,697 dead

The number and frequency of lightning strikes is increasing globally. The proverbial bolts from the blue are killing more people every subsequent year. Between April 2020 and March 2021, 18.5 million lightning strikes were recorded in India. This was a 34 per cent increase from the 13.8 million strikes between April 2019 and March 2020.

These statistics were shared at a webinar on lightning strikes here today, organised by Centre for Science and Environment (CSE) and Down To Earth magazine. The webinar attempted to understand why lightning strikes were increasing in numbers, and their connection to climate change and growing urbanisation.

Some of the states that have been at the receiving end of these strikes are Punjab, Bihar, Uttar Pradesh, Jharkhand, Madhya Pradesh, Haryana, Puducherry, Himachal Pradesh and West Bengal. In Punjab, the increase in number of lightning strikes has been a staggering 331 per cent annually, while in Bihar — where 401 people lost their lives to lightning strikes during the year — there was a 168 per cent rise. Overall, 1,697 people were struck down dead by lightning in India between March 2020 and April 2021.

(Read more here)

Cloud Precipitation

Rivers overflow in western region of Uganda, lake floods in northern region

Rivers have overflowed in Western Region of Uganda, flooding wide areas of Kasese District. Meanwhile rising levels of Lake Kyoga has caused hundreds of households to evacuate in Northern Region.

Kasese District, Western Region

NDTV in Uganda reported at least 30 villages have been affected in Kasese District. Homes, livelihoods, crops and roads have all suffered damage. At least 3 people were rescued from raging flood waters of the Nyamwamba river. Police have warned locals not to cross the river until water levels decrease.

One person died in flooding from the Nyamwamba river in May this year.

Black Cat

Tiger kills two bikers in Uttar Pradesh, India - third survives the night by climbing tree

Two men were killed and the third had a narrow escape when a tiger attacked the bike-borne trio travelling on a link road that passes through the Pilibhit forest reserve in UP. The 23-year-old survivor had managed to climb a tree nearby and spent the entire night there even as the big cat made several failed attempts to strike at him.

Vikas (who only uses his first name) gathered the courage to come down from the tree only after he saw local residents pass by the next morning. "We informed police and forest department after we saw the man, terrified and barely able to speak. A bike was lying nearby and next to it was a body. There were claw marks on the tree that saved the man's life," said Rajendra Prasad, a local resident.

The attack occurred on Sunday night when Kandhai Lal (35) was returning along with his nephew Sonu Kumar (22) and his friend Vikas after meeting his in-laws in Jalalpur village in Shahjahanpur.

According to the forest department, the men were in an inebriated state and were warned by the forest guard about tiger movement in the area along the 10km long link road. "Movement of three tigers had been recorded by our staff in this particular beat of the forest and the victims were cautioned as well but they ignored the warning," deputy director of Pilibhit Tiger Reserve Naveen Khandelwal told TOI.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning kills two in Udayapur, Nepal

Two people have died after being struck by lightning strikes in Udayapur district.

The deceased have been identified as two women - Lalita Sada and Phul Kumari Sada - of Musahar Tole of Triyuga municipality.

Lighting struck them to death while they were working in a field, said District Police Office, Udayapur.

Critically injured Lalita and Phulkumari breathed their last in the course of treatment at Udayapur District Hospital.

Cloud Precipitation

Monsoon storms pound the Valley, northern Arizona with heavy rain

From Flagstaff to parts of the Valley to Tucson, the monsoon has brought heavy rain to all parts of Arizona on Thursday.

Comment: A day earlier dramatic footage showed cars washed away during flash flooding in Flagstaff

Cloud Precipitation

Extreme weather conditions in Sur, Oman - floods destroy homes and cars

A house has collapsed in Oman's Al Aija area in the Wilayat of Sur in south Al Sharqiyah.

According to the latest updates of the weather situation issued by the Oman Meteorology, thunderstorms cumulonimbus clouds are currently extending over the governorates of South and North Al Sharqiyah, Muscat and parts of Al Dakhiliyah, with rainfall of varying intensity that may lead to low horizontal visibility, overflowing valleys and may cause the emergence of another supercell in Al Dhahirah and in parts of the Dhofar Governorate.

Cloud Lightning

Nine killed, dozens missing after boats capsize in Indonesia storm

Rescuers prepare to head out to search for survivors after a string of boats capsized during the storm
Rescuers prepare to head out to search for survivors after a string of boats capsized during the storm
At least nine people were killed and dozens more are missing after a string of boats capsized in a storm that battered Indonesia's section of Borneo island, a local rescue agency said Friday.

The accident happened early Wednesday in waters off the coast of West Kalimantan where waves as high as five metres (16 feet) swamped a dozen fishing vessels and pair of tugboats.

It was first reported by search-and-rescue authorities on Friday.

Nine people have been confirmed dead with another 46 still missing, said Yopi Haryadi, head of the Pontianak rescue agency, who added that 81 people on the vessels had been rescued alive.

The storm inundated nearly 50 villages on land, destroying homes and other buildings with nearly 15,000 residents affected.

Cloud Lightning

Severe thunderstorm with hail hits Osaka, Japan

Thunderstorm with rain and hail in Osaka, Japan.
Natural disaster on July 14, 2021.

Cloud Precipitation

India - Heavy rains trigger deadly floods and landslides in Bihar, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand

Floods in Himachal Pradesh, India, July 2021.
Floods in Himachal Pradesh, India, July 2021.
Days of heavy monsoon rainfall has triggered flooding and several landslides in northern India, affecting the states of Bihar, Himachal Pradesh and Uttarakhand.

Rescuers have recovered 6 bodies after landslides in Kangra District in Himachal Pradesh on 12 July 2021. More people are thought to be missing and search and rescue operations are ongoing. Teams from India's National Disaster Response Force (NDRF) have been deployed to affected areas. Eighty people were rescued from a landslide in Triund, Kangra District.

Meanwhile flooding from the Manjhi River has caused severe damage in the popular tourist destination of Dharamshala City. India's National Emergency Response Centre (NERC) reported 28 homes destroyed and 12 damaged across the state.

Meanwhile in the neighbouring state of Uttarakhand, landslides blocked roads around Chamoli, while 3 members of a family were killed when their house collapsed during a landslide in Bageshwar on 11 July.

Comment: View also: Flash flood in Dharamshala, India - cars washed away, buildings damaged after cloudburst

Cloud Lightning

Moscow roads & airport washed out as biblical rains hit Russian capital, bringing scorching summer heatwave to sudden end

rain moscow
After weeks of sweltering in unusual warmth, on Thursday Moscow saw strong winds and a deluge of rain that has caused disruption across the city, with the weather delaying flights and damaging property in the Russian capital.

A number of flights were delayed leaving the city's main international airport, Sheremetyevo, while video emerged online showing lightning strike the concourse.

Pedestrians in the Arbat struggle through the groundwater as surging rains flood the city.