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Authorities on alert as heavy snowfall continues in Greece

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The cold weather front 'Barbara' hit Greece with snowfall that started late on Saturday continued on Sunday as far south as Central Evia, cancellations of boat schedules, and snow chains on tires required in Attica and sections of the Peloponnese.

Meanwhile, the Civil Protection, Fire Brigade, police, regional, and city authorities are meeting again since 11:00 on Sunday morning.

In Attica, traffic police has said drivers moving in the entire road network of the Attica prefecture must carry snow chains or other non-slip equipment. It also banned heavy trucks of over 3.5 tons from several highways. Authorities have also banned such trucks from sections of the Athens-Thessaloniki national road as well.


Arrow Down

Austria and Switzerland: 10 dead in avalanches in Alps over weekend (UPDATE)

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Austrian authorities logged at least 17 avalanches in the popular skiing destination of Tyrol over the past 24 hours. The dangerous conditions there and in Switzerland have already claimed five lives.

At least five people were killed in avalanches in the Austrian and Swiss Alps, authorities said on Saturday.

Three of the dead were killed while visiting the Austrian Alps.

Officials in the Austrian state of Tyrol have urgently cautioned tourists, skiers and other winter sports athletes to avoid the slopes amid a very high avalanche risk.

Comment: Update February 5

BBC reports:
Weekend avalanches kill 10 in Austria and Switzerland

Ten people have been killed in several avalanches across the Austrian and Swiss Alps over the weekend.

Tourists from New Zealand, China and Germany were among the dead at a number of different ski resorts.

Austrian authorities put in place a level four avalanche alert - the second highest - following intense snowfall and wind in the area.

Despite the warnings, ski resorts in western Austria have been filling up due to school holidays in Vienna.

Austrian police announced five deaths on Sunday, including that of a 59-year-old man who was using a snow plough in the western region of Tyrol.

They also recovered the bodies of a ski guide in Sankt Anton am Arlberg and a 62-year-old man who was cross-country skiing around the summit of Hohe Aifner.

On Saturday, a 17-year-old New Zealander, a 32-year-old Chinese national and a German man in his 50s - who were all said to be skiing off designated ski trails when avalanches hit - were also found dead.

In Switzerland, a 56-year-old woman and 52-year-old man were also killed by unstable snow in the south-east canton of Graubuenden on Saturday morning. Swiss police said a third member of their group managed to escape unharmed.

Avalanches are common in both countries. According to Austria's APA news agency, 30 avalanches were reported in the Tyrol region on Saturday alone - 11 of these involving people.

Austria's level four alert level means "very large avalanches are likely" - it advises inexperienced skiers to remain on open ski runs and trails and for experienced skiers to stay away from very steep terrain.



Tornado2

Lanzarote in the Canary Islands, Spain has hailstorm, torrential rains and even tornado all in one day

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Lanzarote is the most affected island today (Saturday) by the dana that is located to the north of the archipelago, and that is moving in an easterly direction causing strong rains and storms and leaving images rarely seen on the island.

However, the low temperatures have also left a curious and unusual mark on the landscape, a white blanket caused by an intense hailstorm in the area of La Geria and even in the Timanfaya National Park.


Snowflake Cold

Arctic blast sweeps through US north-east with record-breaking temperatures

Steam rises from Boston Harbor as
© Joseph Prezioso
Steam rises from Boston Harbor as temperatures reach -7F (-14C) in Massachusetts, on 4 February.
An Arctic blast has swept through numerous parts of the north-east, leaving millions of people under wind chill warnings and cities and states issuing emergency warnings.

Record-breaking temperatures will be 10 to 30 degrees below average over parts of the north-east and into the coastal mid-Atlantic, the National Weather Service announced on Saturday, with wind gusts potentially reaching up to 40 to 55mph (64 to 88km/h).

The wind chills from the blast have the potential to be once-in-a-generation cold, the agency added.

The cold, which is expected to last throughout the weekend, has prompted officials across multiple states to issue emergency orders and warnings that urge residents to remain indoors.


Attention

Schoolgirl mauled to death by shark in Perth, Western Australia

The 16-year-old girl is understood to have been attacked by a bull shark (stock image)

The 16-year-old girl is understood to have been attacked by a bull shark (stock image)
A girl, 16, who was mauled to death by a shark in front of her friends has been identified as Stella Berry.

The teenager, who was a student at Shenton College in Perth, was relaxing by a rope swing with her friends in the Swan River in North Fremantle, Western Australia, at about 3.30pm on Saturday when she saw a pod of dolphins.

She jumped into the water, but a shark latched on to her leg.

Heroic onlookers, including some people on jet skis, called emergency services and tried to save her life.

However, the schoolgirl had severe leg injuries and died on the scene.


Fire

Chile widens state of emergency as raging wildfires leave at least 13 dead

A firefighter works as a wildfire burns parts of
© Juan González/Reuters
A firefighter works as a wildfire burns parts of rural areas in Quillón, Chile, on Thursday.
Chile's government has declared a widened state of emergency amid wildfires that have killed at least 13 people and consumed about 14,000 hectares (35,000 acres), as the South American country endures a summer heatwave across southern and central swaths of the country.

The interior minister, Carolina Toha, said on Friday morning the government had declared a catastrophe in the region of Biobío, joining its neighbouring region Ñuble, which President Gabriel Boric announced on Thursday evening, allowing the deployment of soldiers and additional resources.

Eleven people, including a firefighter, had died in the Biobío town of Santa Juana, local authorities said.

The agriculture minister, Esteban Valenzuela, also reported an emergency-support helicopter in the southern region of La Araucanía had crashed, killing the pilot and a mechanic.


Boat

Indonesia - Floods in south Sulawesi leave 2 dead, hundreds of homes damaged

Flood rescue in Parepare, South Sulawesi Province, Indonesia, February 2023.
© BPBD Kota Parepare
Flood rescue in Parepare, South Sulawesi Province, Indonesia, February 2023.
More heavy rain has caused havoc on the island of Sulawesi in Indonesia. Disaster authorities report at least 2 people have lost their lives, one person is missing and thousands have been affected after floods in South Sulawesi Province. Flooding has also affected areas of Borneo Island in recent days.

Sulawesi Island

Hours of heavy rain late on 01 February 2023 triggered flooding in the city of Parepare. Flooding affected the districts of Ujung, Bacukiki, West Bacukiki and Soreng. Disaster authorities in the city reported the overflow of the Jawi-Jawi river in the Tegal area of the city in Ujung District. Flood waters in areas close to the river were around 1 metre deep.


Snowflake

70 people trapped by masses of snow in Austria - up to a meter of snowfall within 24 hours

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Heavy snowfall in Austria have cut off 70 people from the outside world and caused traffic chaos, local media reported on Friday.

Due to the tense avalanche situation in the Austrian province of Styria, several roads had to be closed Thursday night, according to daily Kronen Zeitung.

It also said numerous vehicles got stuck on the roadway due to snow. In the meantime, traffic jams of 10 kilometers (six miles) in length occurred.

According to the reports, 80 centimeters (34.5 inches) of fresh snow fell within 24 hours. On Friday morning, several smaller avalanches are said to have already gone off.



Attention

Cloud of smoke and gas erupting from volcano of Ebeko on Paramushir Island, Russia

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Footage filmed on Russian Sakhalin Region's Paramushir Island on Wednesday shows cloud of smoke and gas erupting from Ebeko volcano's Korbut crater.

The report on the official website of Russian Federal Service for Hydrometeorology and Environmental Monitoring warned about remaining danger for flights in the Ebeko volcano area from January 31 to February 1.

Volcano of Ebeko is a complex stratovolcano with several vertex craters located seven kilometres from Severo-Kurilsk on the Vernadsky Ridge.

The volcano has been regularly erupting ash since October 2016. The last one was recorded on 1st of September 2022. At that time, the height of ash column reached four kilometres.

Video source: Ruptly


Snowflake Cold

Upper Midwest, Northeast bracing for arctic blast bringing sub-zero temps, 'life-threatening' wind chills as new polar vortex system moves in

polar vortex february 2023
© FOX Weather
Wind Chill Warnings and Advisories have been issued for most areas across the Northeast in early February 2023
Wind chill warnings and advisories are active in upstate New York, northern Pennsylvania, far north New Jersey and all of New England

New England is preparing for some of the coldest air it's seen in five years as a "dangerous" polar vortex quickly moves into the Upper Midwest and Northeast, bringing sub-zero wind chills and plunging temperatures, FOX Weather reports.

Places like Chicago and Des Moines, Iowa, will be the first to experience the bitter cold Friday morning as morning temperatures are forecast to be in the negative single digits. Other areas in the Midwest, like Northern Minnesota, could even see temps in the negative 20s or 30s.

The highs across the Midwest will struggle to make it out of the single digits Friday afternoon.

Wind chills are expected to be even worse, with feels-like temperatures dropping all the way to negative 50 in some areas. FOX Weather reports frostbite and hypothermia can form on exposed skin in as little as 10 minutes in this type of "dangerous cold."