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Mon, 27 Jan 2020
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Flash floods strike Oman as temperatures sink below zero

floods
Residents were left stranded as heavy rain and snow have blocked roads
Temperatures in some parts of Oman dropped to below zero on Wednesday as heavy rain caused flooding across the Sultanate and residents are braced themselves for a further downpour.

The Oman Meteorological office said temperatures had dropped to -2°C degrees on Wednesday in Jabal Shams, the tallest peak in the Arabian Peninsula, which is located in the north-eastern region of Oman. The temperature in the same area last year hovered around 5°C.

Residents living near the 3,000 metre peak said heavy rain and snow have blocked roads and left most of them stranded in their homes.

"We will run out of food if the bad weather continues. The lower areas of the town are flooded with rainwater and higher areas are full of snow. We will have to wait and see what happens in the next 24 hours," Firas Al-Ruqaishi, 42, a farmer at Jabal Shams, told The National over the phone.


Windsock

Violent microburst blasts down wall of school gym in North Carolina

microburst
© Youtube
Screenshot: Video Students escape gym as microburst tears down wall
CCTV footage of a primary school in North Carolina shows students running to safety as a microburst rips through the gymnasium. Microbursts are wind surges that move in straight lines.

One wall of the gym was torn down in the 80mph (128kph) burst. Three students were taken to hospital with minor injuries.

Comment: Microbursts have been in the news a lot lately:


Snowflake Cold

Parts of Canada's British Columbia in grip of rare, extreme cold weather

People use the street to slide down following a major snow storm in Burnaby, B.C., on Jan. 15, 2020. Vancouver and the lower mainland have been pounded with heavy snow fall and freezing temperatures
© JONATHAN HAYWARD/THE CANADIAN PRESS
People use the street to slide down following a major snow storm in Burnaby, B.C., on Jan. 15, 2020. Vancouver and the lower mainland have been pounded with heavy snow fall and freezing temperatures.
Parts of British Columbia were in the grip of rare and extreme cold weather on Wednesday, resulting in school and daycare closures in Vancouver and throwing traffic into chaos, with residents in the Canadian western province advised against traveling.

Cold weather has spread across western Canada this week. In Edmonton, the capital of the province of Alberta, temperatures dropped to -36 Celsius (-33 Fahrenheit) as of Wednesday morning, according to Environment Canada.

The coldest spot in British Columbia was Puntzi Mountain, which recorded its lowest ever temperature of -48.2 Celsius (-55 Fahrenheit) at 8 a.m local time.

British Columbia normally enjoys relatively temperate weather through the year, and the city of Vancouver is better known for its rain than the snowy winters that define the rest of Canada. The temperature in Vancouver on Wednesday morning was -6 Celsius (21 Fahrenheit), according to Environment Canada.


Snowflake Cold

Report: Idaho avalanche that killed 3 started by skiers

Avalanche
An avalanche at an Idaho ski resort that killed three people last week was triggered by skiers, despite the efforts of the ski patrol to mitigate the danger, according to a preliminary investigation.

The Idaho Panhandle Avalanche Center said the ski patrol had taken steps on Jan. 7 to prevent avalanches at the Silver Mountain Resort near Kellogg, Idaho.

''They had done their control work just like they always do," Jeff Thompson, the director of the avalanche center, told The Spokesman-Review newspaper. "In fact, I think they did more than they normally do to open that slope."

Three skiers died and two others were pulled alive from the snow after the avalanche. A few other skiers were partially buried.

Comment: See also: Third body found buried by avalanche at Silver Mountain ski resort in Idaho


Snowflake

Up to 8 feet deep snowdrifts cleared away on Mauna Kea Access Road, Hawaii

Heavy snow blankets the high elevations of Hawaii’s Big Island after a hefty mid-January snowstorm
© Weatherboy
Heavy snow blankets the high elevations of Hawaii’s Big Island after a hefty mid-January snowstorm
Crews continued to work Tuesday to repair and clear the Maunakea Access Road, which has been closed to the public since Friday because of the first snowfall of the decade.

"There's no gauge up there, but probably about two feet of snow fell," said Stewart Hunter, Maunakea Support Services general manager. "It was windy and a lot of it has drifted, and it drifts into the low places. The snow drifted up to seven or eight feet across the road in places. In some places up higher, there is no snow at all."

The road remained closed at the Maunakea Visitor Information Station, which is at the 9,200-foot level of the mountain. The snow and ice on the road is well above that point, Hunter said.

"Sometimes, the snow will extend way down," he explained. "There's just a little bit of a cap at the top. The rest of it came down as rain."


Comment: Two days earlier: Severe storm, flooding and heavy snowfall strike Hawaii - 22 inches of rain in 24 hours, snowdrifts at least 4 feet deep


Snowflake

5.5 feet of snowfall in 4 days for Snoqualmie Pass, Washington

Snoqualmie Pass shuts down after spin outs

Snoqualmie Pass shuts down after spin outs
It is a white out on Snoqualmie Pass!

Plow drivers have been working hard over the past few days to make sure roads are clear for drivers traveling along I-90. As of 1:25 p.m Tuesday, heavy snow was reported with white out conditions.

The Washington State Department of Transportation said 66 inches of snow have fallen in the past four days.

Conditions will continue to be snowy as another weather system moves into the region and temperatures drop.

Comment: Two days earlier: Snoqualmie Pass in Washington walloped by nearly 3.5 feet of new snow in 2 days


Snowflake Cold

Snow falls on Jebel Jais amid week of extreme weather in UAE

UAE residents are enjoying the winter chill
© Hussein Al Tunaiji
UAE residents are enjoying the winter chill — it's literally snowing in Jebel Jais, where the temperature reached -1 °C in the early hours of Wednesday — even as the country sees intermittent rains which sometimes bring hail.
Snow has fallen on the UAE's highest peak as temperatures plummeted to zero during the country's week-long bout of extreme weather.

Videos emerged on social media of the covering of the white stuff on Jebel Jais, in Ras Al Khaimah, after snow fell on the mountain on Tuesday night and into the early hours of Wednesday.

In one video, a man clothed in a thick winter jacket stands in front of a 4x4 as flurries of snow fall around him.

In another, a Toyota FJ Cruiser, more used to conquering sand dunes, sits with its lights illuminating the ground, which is covered in a blanket of snow.


Doberman

Pack of dogs enter hospital, maul newborn baby to death in Uttar Pradesh, India

canine attack
© Angela Antunes / CC by 2.0
The baby's family members have alleged that hospital staff left the baby alone in an operating theatre with the windows open, letting the dogs in.

In a gruesome reminder of India's persistent stray-dog menace, a newborn child only three hours old was attacked and killed by a pack of dogs at a hospital in Farrukhabad district, Uttar Pradesh, on January 13.

Investigating officer Ved Prakash Pandey told AFP that "the family alleged the baby was left unattended inside the theatre with windows open, leading to the attack."

The agency also quoted a preliminary police assessment saying "the newborn had injuries all over his body" and that police "were expecting a postmortem report to confirm the exact cause of death".

The baby's family members have alleged that staff at the Akash Ganga Hospital left the baby alone in an operating theatre with the windows open, letting the dogs in. Investigators have also said the hospital may not have a license and could be penalised for operating illegally.

Attention

Two southern right whale dolphins wash up in Victoria, Australia - first time ever recorded

This southern right whale dolphin washed up on Port Fairy's East Beach earlier this month.
© Caitlin Em
This southern right whale dolphin washed up on Port Fairy's East Beach earlier this month.
For the first time in recorded history dolphins that usually stick to deep, offshore seas have been found stranded on a Victorian beach.

Two separate southern right whale dolphins have been found dead at Port Fairy's East Beach in the state's south-west in the past couple of weeks, but only one was able to be retrieved by authorities for further examination.

Little has been known about the mysterious species of dolphin that inhabits cool waters across the Southern Hemisphere.

The natural environment programs officer at Victoria's Department of Environment, Land, Water and Planning, Mandy Watson, confirmed the dolphin that washed up in December was the first of its kind ever recorded in Victoria.

Three black and white dolphins, which have no dorsal fin, glide through the air above the water

The second was found in a nearby spot last week which Ms Watson described as "very unusual".

Boat

City of Samarinda in Indonesia floods again, thousands affected

Residents of Bengkuring in Sempaja Timur, Samarinda, flee their homes because of flooding on Tuesday.
© Zakarias Demon Daton
Residents of Bengkuring in Sempaja Timur, Samarinda, flee their homes because of flooding on Tuesday.
Over 7,000 people have been affected by floods triggered by heavy rain in the city of Samarinda in East Kalimantan Province, Indonesia.

Disaster authorities reported flooding in the city on 14 January 2020, with 7,213 residents from 2,529 households affected. Many of those affected have moved to safer areas. No casualties or injuries were reported however.

Heavy rain has been falling in the area over the last few days. In a 24 hour period to 11 January, as much as 82mm of rain fell in Samarinda. A further 61 mm of rain fell between 13 and 14 January, with over 50mm of that total falling in 3 hours.

This is the second major flood event in the city in the last few months. Over 35,000 people were affected by flooding in the city in June last year, when hundreds of homes were damaged.