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Lightning kills 2 while playing football in Bangladesh

Lighting strike killed two youths while playing football in Sunamganj's Dharmapasha. The incident took place in the playground in front of Shantipur village of Jayashree Union of the upazila on Sunday afternoon.

The deceased were identified as Palash, son of Shafiqul of Haripur village and Toasin, son of Shamsul Haque of Shantirpur village of the upazila.

Locals said that Palash and Toasin were playing for two sides in the football game between Haripur and Shantipur village on the field in front of Shantipur village on Sunday afternoon. At that time, lightning struck on them suddenly leaving them seriously injured. Later they were rescued and taken to the Upazila Health Complex where the doctor on duty declared them dead.

Dharmapasha Upazila UNO Shithesh Chandra Sarkar has confirmed the truth of this incident.

Comment: Elsewhere recently another strike killed a father and son on May 21 in Telangana, India while 2 farm workers died after a bolt struck them on May 19 in the Philippines.


Orcas have sunk 3 boats in Europe and appear to be teaching others to do the same. But why?

orca attack spain gibralter sailboat killer whale
© Greg Blackburn
Blackburn was able to film the orcas as they made passes around, and under, the boat on May 9, 2023.
Orcas have attacked and sunk a third boat off the Iberian coast of Europe, and experts now believe the behavior is being copied by the rest of the population.

Three orcas (Orcinus orca), also known as killer whales, struck the yacht on the night of May 4 in the Strait of Gibraltar, off the coast of Spain, and pierced the rudder. "There were two smaller and one larger orca," skipper Werner Schaufelberger told the German publication Yacht. "The little ones shook the rudder at the back while the big one repeatedly backed up and rammed the ship with full force from the side."

Schaufelberger said he saw the smaller orcas imitate the larger one. "The two little orcas observed the bigger one's technique and, with a slight run-up, they too slammed into the boat." Spanish coast guards rescued the crew and towed the boat to Barbate, but it sank at the port entrance.

Two days earlier, a pod of six orcas assailed another sailboat navigating the strait. Greg Blackburn, who was aboard the vessel, looked on as a mother orca appeared to teach her calf how to charge into the rudder. "It was definitely some form of education, teaching going on," Blackburn told 9news.


Magnitude 6.1 earthquake in the Solomon Islands


The quake hit at a shallow depth of 10 km beneath the epicenter near Kirakira, Nakumwe, Makira-Ulawa Province, Solomon Islands, early morning on Monday, May 22nd, 2023, at 2:45 am local time. The exact magnitude, epicenter, and depth of the quake might be revised within the next few hours or minutes as seismologists review data and refine their calculations, or as other agencies issue their report.

A second report was later issued by France's Réseau National de Surveillance Sismique (RéNaSS), which listed it as a magnitude 6.0 earthquake. A third agency, the citizen-seismograph network of RaspberryShake, reported the same quake at magnitude 6.2.

Based on the preliminary seismic data, the quake was probably felt by many people in the area of the epicenter. It should not have caused significant damage, other than objects falling from shelves, broken windows, etc.

In Kirakira (pop. 1,100) located 65 km from the epicenter, the quake should have been felt as light shaking.

Comment: About 50 minutes earlier: Shallow 6.8-magnitude quake hits Prince Edward Islands region off South Africa


Shallow 6.8-magnitude quake hits Prince Edward Islands region off South Africa

An earthquake with a magnitude of 6.8 jolted Prince Edward Islands region at 1456 GMT on Sunday, the U.S. Geological Survey said.

The epicenter, with a depth of 10.0 km, was initially determined to be at 43.4362 degrees south latitude and 39.3676 degrees east longitude.

Comment: About 50 minutes later: Magnitude 6.1 earthquake in the Solomon Islands


Dust devil appears in middle of home plate during baseball game in Florida

The incident occured at the Minor League Fields at Ed Auston Park, Fort Caroline in Florida during a Mother's Day tournament

The incident occured at the Minor League Fields at Ed Auston Park, Fort Caroline in Florida during a Mother's Day tournament
A 7-year-old child was caught in the middle of the dust devil.

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Husband of 2-time Olympic champion Justyna Kowalczyk killed in avalanche in Switzerland

The heartbreaking last picture of Kacper Tekieli at the top of Jungfrau, which he had sent to his wife and son, writing “I love you kitties”, and she had shared on social media after his death.

The heartbreaking last picture of Kacper Tekieli at the top of Jungfrau, which he had sent to his wife and son, writing “I love you kitties”, and she had shared on social media after his death.
The husband of two-time Olympic champion Justyna Kowalczyk was killed Thursday in an avalanche in the Swiss Alps, the Polish Mountaineering Support Foundation said.

Sports climber Kacper Tekieli, who was 38, last posted on Facebook on Tuesday from Konkordia Hut in Fiescherthal, Switzerland.

"He was most wonderful," a post on Kowalczyk's official Facebook page said in Polish, followed by "He was the most beautiful person in the world" in English.

Tekieli was a climbing instructor who climbed in the Himalayas on the Makalu, the fifth highest mountain in the world, and on Broad Peak, as well as in the Alps. He married Kowalczyk in 2020. The couple have a 20-month-old son.

Kowalczyk, a cross-country skier who won gold medals at the 2010 Vancouver Olympics and the 2014 Sochi Games, has retired from competition.


Italy: Floods claim lives and cause enormous damage to farms - thousands of hectares of crops flooded

The Santerno River breached its bank, flooding Ca' di Lugo - San Lorenzo in the province of Ravenna.
© Leandra Ricci Bitti on Meteo Emilia Romagna
The Santerno River breached its bank, flooding Ca' di Lugo - San Lorenzo in the province of Ravenna.
"We've lost a colleague, an acquaintance, a friend. The loss of life is the worst result of the catastrophe that struck Cesena and the regions of Emilia-Romagna and De Marche [in Italy] on May 16," Matteo Evangelisti, Biondi Giulio's manager, told FreshPlaza on Wednesday. This cultivation company has a stall at the Cesena wholesale market, where Sauro Manuzzi was a mainstay. Everyone knew this aromatic herb seller. His wife, who went missing first, was also found lifeless in Cesenatico, 20 km from their farm.

The state of emergency is still in effect in Italy. The area around Lugo began flooding early yesterday morning, May 18. "In the hills of Romagna, entire villages are isolated because the roads have been washed away. People have no electricity or water. The civil defense department is trying to reach them," says Matteo.

Comment: See also: Italy - 14 dead after more flooding in Emilia-Romagna

Cloud Precipitation

Italy - 14 dead after more flooding in Emilia-Romagna (UPDATES)

Floods in Emilia-Romagna, Italy, 16 May 2023.
© Civil Protection Emilia-Romagna
Floods in Emilia-Romagna, Italy, 16 May 2023.
Firefighters in Italy have rescued dozens of people trapped in flooded areas of the Emilia-Romagna Region. As of 17 May Civil Protection reported at least 2 people have lost their lives and 3 more were missing. Parts of the neighbouring Marche Region have also been severely impacted.

Floods in the Emilia-Romagna Region, Italy

Communities in the region of Emilia-Romagna are still recovering from catastrophic flooding earlier this month when at least 2 people lost their lives. At the time, the President of the Emilia-Romagna Region, Stefano Bonaccini, described the situation as unprecedented.

Further heavy rain fell in the region from 15 May 2023, increasing river levels and triggering landslides. Italy's fire and rescue service, Vigili del Fuoco, said 500 firefighters were working in the affected areas of Ravenna, Forlì-Cesena, Rimini and Bologna Provinces.

Comment: Update May 18

From the same source:
In a statement of 17 May, the regional government of Emilia-Romagna reported 8 people have now died as a result of floods and landlsides in the region since 16 may. Six fatalities occurred in the province of Forlì-Cesena, one in the province of Ravenna and another in the Bologna area. Several people are still thought to be missing and thousands have evacuated their homes.

Over twenty rivers and streams have broken their banks, causing flooding in 37 municipalities. Authorities reported 250 landslides, including 120 severe landslides, in 48 municipalities.
Update May 20

Agence France-Presse reports:
The toll from floods that have devastated the Emilia Romagna region in Italy rose to 14 Friday, amid calls for the government to revive an abandoned project to mitigate the impact of natural disasters.

Authorities in Ravenna ordered the immediate evacuation of two small towns and issued an "extremely urgent" call for residents to reduce their movements to a minimum in the region, which was still subject to a red weather alert.

"The death toll has risen to 14," a spokeswoman for the region told AFP.

The latest victim to be found was a man recovered from a flooded house in Faenza, a picturesque city usually surrounded by green pastures and vineyards, left largely underwater after the fierce downpour earlier this week.

Nearly half of the 10,000 people evacuated from their homes spent the night in local refuge centres set up in gyms or hotels, with others receiving hot meals from mobile kitchens deployed in several cities.

Locals in Faenza shovelled mud out of their homes, piling sodden mattresses, clothes and furniture together in mountains of waste.

In Ravenna, rain was still falling and mayor Massimo Isola described a "disastrous situation" in hamlets up in the hills surrounding the city.

As rescue workers searched for people still cut off by the waters, details emerged of the final moments of some of those who died.


150 wildfires continue to burn across northern Alberta and British Columbia - smoke chokes skies across America's northern tier

Wildfire smoke covers the Denver skyline on May 19, 2023.
© Colorado Department of Public Health & Environment
Wildfire smoke covers the Denver skyline on May 19, 2023.
Thick smoke from Canadian wildfires has pushed across the border into America's northern tier states this week, blanketing several states in a milky orange-tinged haze and sending air quality to hazardous levels in a few areas.

Around 150 wildfires are burning across northern Alberta and British Columbia, pouring acrid smoke across western Canada that is carrying south into the United States along the upper-level winds. Smoke has reached into the Pacific Northwest, Rockies, northern Plains and even into the Great Lakes and Mississippi Valley.

Smoky skies have been reported as far south as St. Louis and Paducah, Kentucky and as far west as Seattle and Denver.


Video shows waterspout in Key Largo, Florida

A witness shared a video recorded on Friday morning in Key Largo that shows a water spout.