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Fri, 27 Jan 2023
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Earth Changes


Shallow magnitude 6.1 earthquake recorded in Gulf of California

An earthquake of magnitude 6.1 has been recorded in the Gulf of California off the coast of Mexico, the US Geological Survey (USGS) said on Friday.

The earthquake occurred at 10:02 GMT 80.3 kilometers (49.9 miles) southwest of the Mexican town of Bahia de Kino with a population of 6,050 people. The source of the earthquake was at a depth of 10 kilometers (6.2 miles).

There were no reports of casualties or damage.


Alder Flycatcher from North America turns up in Galway, Ireland

There is a general concensus in North America
© Brian McCloskey
There is a general concensus in North America that Alder Flycatcher is not reliably separated from the similar Willow Flycatcher in the field. However, this is often unfounded, with good-quality digital photographs helping to confirm identification.
Ireland's first Empidonax flycatcher has been confirmed as Alder Flycatcher by DNA analysis.

The finder of the bird, Steve Millar, took to Twitter to reveal the news that a sample he'd collected after the bird's departure had been tested by the wildlife forensics lab at the University of Aberdeen.

The results showed that the bird, which spent three days on the island of Inishbofin from 9-11 October, was an Alder Flycatcher - an ID that had been all but confirmed on field views. This should now mean a straightforward acceptance by the Irish Rare Birds Committee (IRBC) and therefore addition to the Irish list.

Cloud Precipitation

Indonesia - At least 11 fatalities after floods and landslides in 8 provinces

Two young people died in floods in South Lampun
© BPBD Lampung Province
Two young people died in floods in South Lampung, Lampung Province on 27 October 2022.
Days of heavy rain, floods and landslides have caused damage and fatalities on Java, Sumatra and the Lesser Sunda Islands in Indonesia. Disaster authorities report at least 11 people have lost their lives in landslides and floods since 23 October 2022.

Java Island

Indonesia's National Agency for Disaster Countermeasure, (abbreviated as BNPB) reported 3 people died and two were injured after heavy rain triggered a landslide in Sendang District, Tulungagung Regency, East Java Province on 23 October.


Woman mauled to death in dog attack in Laredo, Texas

dog attack
The Laredo Police Department is releasing more details regarding the death of a migrant woman who was found dead in south Laredo.

Residents who live near the 300 block of River Front are shaken up after learning about a woman who was found dead with bite marks on Tuesday morning.

Surveillance video from a nearby home captured the moments first responders arrived and found with the woman injured at the scene.

A south Laredo resident who did not want to be identified said she is both shocked and scared not just for her children but for the people in the neighborhood as well.


London hit by flash flooding amid torrential downpours

Emergency services have responded 45 flooding incidents across London as heavy rain from Storm Claudio hit during the morning rush-hour.

London Fire Brigade received a number of calls from people trapped in their cars, as well as property flooding.

The Brigade is warning people to avoid driving or walking through floodwaters and not to let children or pets play in it.

A video posted to Twitter shows a number of cars driving through flood waters - including a Thames Water van - during the morning rush-hour in West Drayton, in Hillingdon.


Big winter storm brings heavy snow to Alaska - up to 20 inches

Snow is cleared from a parking lot at the Kenai Municipal Airport on Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2022, in Kenai, Alaska.
© Jake Dye/Peninsula Clarion
Snow is cleared from a parking lot at the Kenai Municipal Airport on Wednesday, Nov. 2, 2022, in Kenai, Alaska.
Snow was piling up in parts of southcentral on Wednesday as a large winter storm hit the region.

Snowfall was highest for Clam Gulch with a reported 20 inches of snow. Nikiski saw between 14 to 20 inches.

Snow is still falling in Anchorage and the valleys going into Wednesday night.

Accumulations could total 4 to 6 inches in the Anchorage bowl, and 7 to ten inches along the hillside.

Winter weather advisories have moved into the Interior as moisture heads north. Fairbanks is likely to see several inches of snow.

Cloud Precipitation

Hurricane Lisa slams Belize bringing storm surge, flooding and extreme winds

On Wednesday, November 2, hurricane Lisa made landfall near Belize City, in the Central American nation of Belize. The U.S. National Hurricane Center said Lisa had maximum sustained winds of 85 mph at landfall.

The storm's center was about 10 miles southwest of Belize City and moving west at 12 mph. Off the coast of Belize, heavy rain has started and there is some storm surge.

A storm surge likely raise water levels by as much as 4 to 7 feet above normal tide levels near and to the north of where the center of Lisa crosses the coast of Belize.


Large 'waterspout tornado' filmed off coast of Brittany, France

A large 'waterspout' has appeared off the coast of Finistère in Brittany, in an impressive example of the rare meteorological phenomenon.

Waterspouts appear in the shape of a tornado but are actually seawater, and hover above the sea. This one was seen on November 1 off the coast of Penmarc'h.

Déborah Le Palud, who owns a salon on the coast, told Ouest France: "It was impressive. The sky was dark and the rain was intense [and then I saw] a big line taking shape. It was spinning and picking up big swathes of water."

The meteorological event is rare.


150 dead and dozens feared missing as storm and floods lash Philippines (UPDATES)

Philippine rescuers evacuate people from floods from Severe Tropical Storm Nalgae in Parang, Maguindanao province.
© Philippine coast guard
Philippine rescuers evacuate people from floods from Severe Tropical Storm Nalgae in Parang, Maguindanao province.
Flash floods and landslides set off by torrential rains left at least 47 people dead, including in a hard-hit southern Philippine province, officials said.

At least 42 people were swept away by rampaging floodwaters and drowned or were hit by debris-filled mudslides in three towns in Maguindanao province from Thursday night to early on Friday, said Naguib Sinarimbo, the interior minister for a five-province Muslim autonomous region run by former separatist guerrillas.

Five other people died elsewhere from the onslaught of Tropical Storm Nalgae, which slammed into the eastern province of Camarines Sur early on Saturday, the government's disaster-response agency said.

Comment: Update October 31

AP reports:
Over 100 dead, dozens missing in storm-ravaged Philippines

Rescuers carry a body at Maguindanao's Datu Odin Sinsuat town, southern Philippines on Sunday October 30, 2022.

Rescuers carry a body at Maguindanao's Datu Odin Sinsuat town, southern Philippines on Sunday October 30, 2022.
More than 100 people have died in one of the most destructive storms to lash the Philippines this year with dozens more feared missing after villagers fled in the wrong direction and got buried in a boulder-laden mudslide. Almost two million others were swamped by floods in several provinces, officials said Monday.

At least 53 of 105 people who died — mostly in flash floods and landslides — were from Maguindanao province in a Muslim autonomous region, which was swamped by unusually heavy rains set off by Tropical Storm Nalgae. The storm blew out into the South China Sea on Sunday, leaving a trail of destruction in a large swath of the archipelago.

A large contingent of rescuers with bulldozers, backhoes and sniffer dogs resumed retrieval work in southern Kusiong village in hard-hit Maguindanao, where as many as 80 to 100 people, including entire families, are feared to have been buried by a boulder-laden mudslide or swept away by flash floods that started overnight Thursday, said Naguib Sinarimbo, the interior minister for the Bangsamoro autonomous region run by former separatist guerrillas under a peace pact.

The government's main disaster-response agency said there were at least 98 storm deaths, and seven other fatalities were later reported by three provincial governors. At least 69 people were injured and 63 others remain missing.

About 1.9 million people were lashed by the storm, including more than 975,000 villagers who fled to evacuation centres or homes of relatives. At least 4,100 houses and 16,260 hectares (40,180 acres) of rice and other crops were damaged by floodwaters at a time when the country was bracing for a looming food crisis because of global supply disruptions, officials said.

Sinarimbo said the official tally of missing people did not include most of those feared missing in the huge mudslide that hit Kusiong because entire families may have been buried and no member was left to provide names and details to authorities.

The catastrophe in Kusiong, populated mostly by the Teduray ethnic minority group, was particularly tragic because its more than 2,000 villagers have carried out disaster-preparedness drills every year for decades to brace for a tsunami because of a deadly history. But they were not as prepared for the dangers that could come from Mount Minandar, where their village lies at the foothills, Sinarimbo said.

"When the people heard the warning bells, they ran up and gathered in a church on a high ground," Sinarimbo told The Associated Press on Saturday, citing accounts by Kusiong villagers.

"The problem was, it was not a tsunami that inundated them but a big volume of water and mud that came down from the mountain," he said.

In August 1976, an 8.1-magnitude earthquake and a tsunami in the Moro Gulf that struck around midnight left thousands of people dead and devastated coastal provinces in one of the deadliest natural disasters in Philippine history.
Update November 2

Death toll from tropical storm Nalgae rises to 132, dozens missing in Philippines

At least 132 people have died in the severe tropical storm Nalgae that battered the Philippines over the weekend, the government said Tuesday, according to Xinhua.

Nalgae, one of the most destructive cyclones that battered the Philippines, triggered flash floods and landslides in many parts of the Southeast Asian country.

The Office of Civil Defense reported a total of 132 deaths as of Monday.

However, the National Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Council tallied 110 fatalities, of which 79 were confirmed, while the identities of the other 31 are still being verified. Of the 33 reported missing, the agency confirmed 23, while the identities of the other 10 are still being verified.

The agency said 59 deaths were from the Bangsamoro Autonomous Region in Muslim Mindanao (BARMM) in the southern Philippines. At least 16 in the region remain missing.

The rest of the fatalities were from nine regions on the main Luzon island, in the central Philippines, and other areas on Mindanao island in the southern Philippines outside of the BARMM.

The agency said the tropical storm affected over 2.4 million people, damaged 364 roads and 82 bridges, and caused power outages in many areas.

Nalgae is the 16th tropical cyclone to lash the Philippines this year. It slammed into Catanduanes, an island province in the Bicol region, before dawn Saturday.
Update November 3

AFP reports:
More rain on the way as Philippine storm death toll hits 150

The death toll from a powerful storm that triggered flooding and landslides across the Philippines has reached 150, disaster officials said Thursday, as more rain was forecast in some of the hardest-hit areas.

More than 355,400 people fled their homes as Severe Tropical Storm Nalgae pounded swathes of the archipelago nation late last week and over the weekend.

Of the 150 deaths recorded by the national disaster agency, 63 were in the Bangsamoro region on the southern island of Mindanao where flash floods and landslides destroyed villages.

At least 128 people were injured and 36 are still missing across the country, the agency said. Authorities have warned there is no hope of finding more survivors.

Mindanao is rarely hit by the 20 or so typhoons that strike the Philippines each year, but storms that do reach the region tend to be deadlier than in Luzon and the central parts of the country.

With more rain forecast Thursday, disaster agencies in Bangsamoro were preparing for the possibility of further destruction in the poor and mountainous region.

"The soil is still wet in areas where flash floods and landslides occurred so further erosion could be instantly triggered," said Naguib Sinarimbo, regional civil defense chief.

"Waterways and rivers that were in the path of the flash floods are blocked by debris and boulders so they could easily overflow."

President Ferdinand Marcos has blamed deforestation and climate change for the devastating landslides in Bangsamoro.

He has urged local authorities to plant trees on denuded mountains.

"That's one thing that we need to do," Marcos told a briefing this week.

"We have been hearing this over and over again, but we still continue cutting trees. That's what happens, landslides like that happen."

Marcos has declared a state of calamity for six months in the worst-affected regions, freeing up funds for relief efforts.


12 inches of snow in 24 hours covers California mountainside

The UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Lab reported on Wednesday, November 2, that 12 inches (30.5 cm) of snow fell in 24 hours in Soda Springs, California, in the Sierra Nevada mountain range.

Video posted by the UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Lab on Wednesday shows fluffy flakes falling on the snow-covered ground in Soda Springs, a sharp contrast from footage of flurries posted just a day earlier.

The lab said that they were expecting an additional two to five inches of snow on Wednesday. The snowfall in the mountain range caused "slippery roads," according to the National Weather Service (NWS). The NWS issued a winter storm warning until Wednesday evening. Credit: UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Lab via Storyful.