Earth ChangesS

Bizarro Earth

Fire traps tourists in southern Italy, kills 4

Four people were burnt to death on Tuesday by a fast-moving brush fire that trapped hundreds of tourists on beaches in southern Italy's Puglia region, local authorities said.

Emergency services used patrol boats and helicopters to whisk 450 holidaymakers and residents off the beaches to which they had rushed to try to escape the flames, which spread quickly and were threatening holiday villages and hotels, port police said.

Cloud Lightning

Loose dykes spur China flood fears as hundreds die

BEIJING - Hundreds of sections of embankments along China's third-longest river have become loose, threatening the homes of millions of people after three weeks of deadly floods across the country, state media said on Tuesday.

Cloud Lightning

Floods, landslides kill 30 in Indonesia

Flash floods and landslides in central Indonesia have killed at least 30 people, and the death toll looks set to rise, Associated Press (AP) has reported.

A map showing the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia. Helicopters sought to deliver aid to victims of floods and landslides in central Indonesia Wednesday as 66 people were confirmed dead and 23 listed as missing, officials said.(

A senior health official confirmed the toll, and predicted the number of deaths would rise as rescuers reach remote areas in the disaster zone.

Bizarro Earth

Moderate quake in India, mild tremors in Delhi

A moderate quake occurred in northern India on Monday, with mild tremors felt in the capital New Delhi, the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) said.

The 4.9 magnitude quake was recorded at 4:32 a.m., with the epicentre near Uttarkashi in Uttarakhand, 280 km northeast of New Delhi, said the USGS.

Bizarro Earth

Volcano in Tanzania erupts, spews lava

A volcano in northern Tanzania erupted on Friday, spewing small amounts of smoke and lava, the government spokesman said.

Mt. Oldonyo Lengai, which is close to the border with Kenya, is believed to be the source of a series of shallow earthquakes experienced in the region over the past week, said Alfred Mutua, the Kenyan government spokesman.



11 workers missing after coal mine flood in north China

Eleven miners are missing in a flooded coal mine in northern China's Shanxi province, Xinhua news agency said Monday.

Water burst into the small privately-owned mine near Lu-liang late on Sunday night. Rescuers have been pumping water out of the pit. Local authorities said it was impossible to say whether the workers were still alive.

Water had accumulated following several weeks of heavy rains, which have affected regions all over China in recent weeks.

Cloud Lightning

Lightning kills diver off Florida coast

Lightning struck a diver's oxygen tank as he surfaced off Florida's Atlantic coast, killing him, authorities said.

The 36-year-old man was diving with three others Sunday off a boat near Deerfield Beach, about 40 miles north of Miami. He had surfaced about 30 feet from the boat when lightning struck his tank, said Deerfield Beach Fire Chief Gary Fernaays.

The other divers struggled to get the man back into the boat and radioed for help, Fernaays said. The victim, whose name was not immediately released, was rushed to the beach, where a rescue crew gave him CPR. He was later pronounced dead at North Broward Medical Center in Pompano Beach.


Houses, hospitals, transport hit by power outage in Barcelona

A faulty cable triggered a major power outage in Barcelona Monday, snarling traffic, hobbling public transportation and knocking out electricity to homes and businesses in much of Spain's second largest city.

City officials said the blackout began around 11 a.m. (0900 GMT) and affected traffic lights in much of the city center as well as several lines of the subway system. Police officers manned major intersections to keep traffic flowing.

The blackout continued more than four hours later, although Red Electrica, the company that manages Spain's power grid, said more than half the power supply had been restored.

Spanish Industry Minister Joan Clos ruled out sabotage, blaming the blackout on a substation cable that fell, causing a chain-reaction failure in as many as six other substations.

Around 300,000 customers spread throughout most of Barcelona lost power, and 130,000 of them remained without electricity mid-afternoon, the minister told a news conference.


UK: Worst Flooding In Modern History

Thousands of people are without electricity or water as Britain suffers its worst flooding in modern history.

Submerged areas are bracing themselves for further chaos with water levels not expected to peak until tomorrow morning.

Gloucestershire is likely to be hit by yet more flooding as the River Severn is expected to rise once again in the early hours.


Severn Trent Water confirmed "at least" 350,000 homes in the county will be without water by this evening.

The peak level of the Thames is expected to travel through Oxford at about 2.45am and Abingdon at about 6.45am.

Environment Secretary Hilary Benn has told MPs the flooding emergency is "far from over".

West London and the Thames Valley could be the next parts of Britain to go underwater as the floods spread east.

Hundreds of homes could be flooded when torrential rain hits the capital in the next 24 hours.

Bizarro Earth

Idaho wildfire threatens Air Force range

BOISE, Idaho - A wildfire grew by an estimated 200 square miles in 24 hours, blackening grazing land Sunday as it threatened thousands of southern Idaho homes and facilities at an Air Force training range, fire officials said Sunday.