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Sat, 22 Sep 2018
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Medicane expected to fully form east of Sardinia over next 24 hours

sardinia medicane
Latest model guidance, together with radar and satellite imagery is now in very good agreement on the developing tropical-like cyclone over the Tyrrhenian sea - a Medicane! Deep convection in ongoing around the centre of the cyclone and tightening pressure gradient is visible. The Medicane is expected to become better organized and more intense within the next 48 hours while it moves along the SE coast of Sardinia towards Tunisia.

Today's morning radar and satellite analysis: notice the pronounced cirrus clouds outflow across the SW quadrant of the cyclone, as well as interesting behaviour of the convective bands around the sistem.

Comment: While the US recovers from devastating Hurricane Florence, and parts of Asia recover from the extreme Typhoon Mangkhut, and while the UK and Ireland brace themselves for Storm Bronagh, merely 24 hours after Storm Ali passed, it seems the Mediterranean is up next.

(July 2017) Eight tropical cyclones spinning simultaneously in the north Pacific Ocean for first time since 1974
(Nov 2017) Storm Numa may become a rare 'medicane' in the Mediterranean Sea


Video shows fire tornado in British Columbia, Canada

BC fire tornado
© THE CANADIAN PRESS/HO-Instagram-Mary Schidlowsky
BC Wildfire Service crews encounter a "fire whirl" while fighting a wildfire near Vanderhoof, B.C. on Aug. 19.
For some B.C. residents it may seem like the wildfire season is over for this year, but fire crews are still battling blazes across the province.

Video captured and posted to social media shows firefighters dealing with a huge blaze near Vanderhoof on Aug. 19, including a fire whirl or fire tornado.

The firefighters were battling the Chutanli Lake wildfire, currently estimated at 20,813 hectares. It is now 95 per cent contained.

The video, posted on Instagram, was shot by a wildland firefighter, who is part of the Mackenzie Unit Crew.

"Fire tornado destroyed our line," she writes. "It threw burning logs across our guard for 45 minutes and pulled our hose 100-plus [feet] in the air before melting it. That's definitely a first."

In the video, a firefighter can be seen grabbing their hose, which is being pulled high into the air by the fire. A second firefighter rushes in to help.

Comment: Also in British Columbia, Canada this week, according to reports and footage sent to Environment Canada, there is a possibility that an extremely rare tornado formed near Hayward Lake in Lower Mainland, B.C. on September 16. If confirmed, this will be the 5th tornado in British Columbia over the past 15 years.

An increasing number of waterspouts, 'firenados' and dust-devils also made their appearance around the world this August. Once a rare phenomenon, waterspouts are increasingly common these days in some areas. At the same time, vortexes of water, fire and dust are appearing in very unusual places.
SOTT Earth Changes Summary - August 2018: Extreme Weather, Planetary Upheaval, Meteor Fireballs


Storm Ali: Two dead after 100mph winds lash UK and Ireland - UPDATE

Waves hit the seafront in Porthcawl, Wales

Waves hit the seafront in Porthcawl, Wales

Travel disruption, power cuts and damage to buildings are expected as forecasters predict a very windy spell of weather

The Met Office has warned of a danger to life as Storm Ali brings winds up to 80mph to parts of the UK today.

Forecasters are predicting a very windy spell of weather, with travel disruption, power cuts and damage to buildings expected.

Severe amber weather warnings have been issued for the North of England, Scotland and Northern Ireland, which are in place until 5pm on Wednesday.

"Flying debris is likely and could lead to injuries or danger to life," a Met Office spokesman said.

Commuters have been told to expect longer journey times and cancellations, with road, rail and air travel likely to be affected.

The strong winds may blow tiles from roofs and cause damage to properties from falling trees, the Met Office said.

There is also a risk of power cuts, which could affect mobile phone coverage, it added.

A less severe yellow warning for wind has been issued for the whole of Scotland, northern England, north Wales and Northern Ireland until 10pm.


UPDATE: The Independent on 20th Sept. reports:
Woman thrown from cliff in caravan and man killed by falling tree as raging winds batter country

Two people have been killed after Storm Ali swept across the UK and Ireland, bringing torrential rain and winds of more than 100mph.

A woman died after a caravan was blown off a cliff on Ireland's west coast as she slept inside.

A workman was also killed by a falling tree in a country park. The man in his 20s, was a contractor for Northern Ireland Water.

His colleague, a man in his 40s, was also injured after the tree was torn from ground in Slieve Gullion Park in County Armagh.

The Health and Safety Executive has launched an investigation.

The body of the woman in her 50s was found during a search of a beach on Ireland's west coast.

Police said the caravan was lifted by strong winds and blown down a 15ft cliff at Claddaghduff village, near Clifden in County Galway. Pictures showed the caravan smashed to pieces on the rocks below.

The fatalities came as raging winds battered much of the UK, leaving tens of thousands of homes without power and causing widespread travel disruption.

Authorities in Dumfries and Galloway, southwest Scotland, declared a "major incident" and warned of a "serious risk to life".

Schoolchildren were stopped from walking home after several people were injured by flying debris. Teachers stayed late to supervise pupils after school buses were suspended due to hazardous roads.

Storm Ali
© PA
Pictured is a bus that was carrying students of Dundee University that was hit by a falling tree in Fife during storm Ali.
More than 70,000 homes were left without power across Scotland, while 250,000 properties in Ireland suffered electricity outages as lines toppled.

Rail, roads, flights and ferry services were all severely affected by the storm in Scotland and Ireland.

Gusts of 102.2mph hit Dundee's Tay Road Bridge, forcing its complete closure to traffic. Restrictions were also put in place on the Forth Road Bridge, Clackmannanshire Bridge and Queensferry Crossing.

Elsewhere, tug boats were called to a cruise ship which slipped its berth in Greenock. Strong winds caused the Nautica vessel - which had 478 passengers and 26 crew - leave the dock after its mooring lines parted. There were no reports of injuries.

In Crewe, Cheshire, a woman was seriously injured after a tree fell on her car, trapping her inside.

Rescue teams winched a man out of a ravine after he was thrown out of a digger during high winds in Rogart, the Highlands.

North Yorkshire Police said it had dealt with an incident on the roads every three minutes on Wednesday afternoon. The 81 call-outs between noon and 4pm include roads being blocked by fallen trees and storm-related car crashes.

A Met Office amber warning was in place across Scotland, Northern Ireland, north England and northwest Wales throughout the day.

The alert warned that flying debris was likely and could lead to injuries or danger to life. It was downgraded to a yellow warning on Wednesday night as Storm Ali edged away from the UK.

Ali was the first named storm of the season. The name was drawn from a list compiled by the Met Office and Met Eireann using public submissions.


Huge crop losses expected as Hurricane Florence battered North Carolina just before harvest

Cotton damage crop
© Josh McGinty, Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
Cotton damaged by Hurricane Harvey, 2017.
With rainfall totals in parts of North Carolina reaching as much as 36 inches since Thursday due to Hurricane Florence, a big chunk of rural North Carolina was largely marooned Monday with more than 1,000 roads closed in the state.

Still, North Carolina Farm Bureau President Larry Wooten noted the sun was shining in Raleigh, North Carolina, on Monday afternoon and he expected recovery would begin soon.

"We're seeing some blue skies, and that makes everybody's spirits a little better and that old Flo (Florence) has gone on north somewhere," Wooten said. "We don't wish it on anybody, but we're just glad it's off the coast of North Carolina."

The North Carolina Farm Bureau is also a major insurer in the state, and people with personal property and business damages were trying to call offices to file claims. But phone lines were down and travel remains nearly impossible in parts of the state because of flooded roads and bridges.

Comment: Crop and cattle losses are on the rise everywhere, whether it be due to extensive drought, massive hail, epic flooding, unexpected frosts, and even epidemics, see: Erratic seasons and extreme weather devastating crops around the world

Cloud Lightning

Scientists observe origins of elusive sprites that appear above thunderstorms

sprites 2011

A new study has lifted the lid on the behaviour of unusual electrical discharges known as red sprites. This striking form of lightning appears in the upper atmosphere, sitting above the thunderstorms themselves
A new study has lifted the lid on the behaviour of unusual electrical discharges known as red sprites.

This striking form of lightning appears in the upper atmosphere, sitting above the thunderstorms themselves.

Now, scientists have observed the 'parent' lightning strokes for dozens of red sprites over a storm in China, revealing new insight on how these remarkable phenomena are produced.

Sprites appear as vertical streaks above thunderstorms at an altitude of about 24 to 55 miles (40 to 90 kilometers).

They fall within what are known as transient luminous events (TLES).

Comment: So scientists have a better idea of where sprites originate, but as of right now, few seem to have been able to identify why they, and a variety of other atmospheric phenomena, have surged in recent years: Also check out SOTT radio's:


China evacuates millions after Typhoon Mangkhut leaves Hong Kong in tatters

commercial building in Hong Kong damaged by Typhoon Mangkhut
© Lam Yik Fei/Getty Images
Windows of a commercial building in Hong Kong damaged by Typhoon Mangkhut.
More than three million people have been moved to safety in southern China as Typhoon Mangkhut moved northward and continued to wreak havoc across the region.

Mangkhut made landfall in Guangdong, China's most populous province, late afternoon Sunday, killing four people before heading west into neighboring Guangxi province around midnight.

The decision to evacuate towns and cities in southern China came as Hong Kong was left reeling by ferocious winds of up to 173 kilometers per hour (107 miles per hour) and gusts of up to 223 kph (138 mph).

The storm tore off roofs and scaffolding from skyscrapers, shattered windows, shook high-rise buildings and caused serious flooding in low-lying areas as waves of more than three meters (9.8 feet) lashed the coast.

Across the Pearl River Delta in the gambling hub of Macau, hundreds of households were left without power amid extensive flooding, which reached head-height in places close to the shoreline.

Comment: Watch as Super-typhoon Mangkhut wreaks havoc in Philippines, Hong Kong and southern China


Massive waterspout in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina surf triggers tornado warning

A massive waterspout just off the Myrtle Beach coast on Sunday triggered a tornado warning that lasted until Sunday afternoon.

The incident happened just before noon in the waters at Myrtle Beach in the heart of the main hotel district at Broadway Street and 3rd Avenue South.

The waterspout was moving ashore in at the time. WBTW had radar and live video of the waterspout as it appeared to move shore.

The National Weather Service issued a warning about the weather event.

Bizarro Earth

Record rainfall from Hurricane Florence causes spill at Duke Energy coal ash landfill near Wilmington, NC

coal ash ponds north carolina

Coal ash, the toxic byproduct of burning coal, poses an environmental threat to areas in the path of Tropical Storm Florence.
The intense rainfall from Tropical Depression Florence has caused the collapse of a slope at a coal ash landfill managed by Duke Energy near Wilmington, North Carolina late Saturday.

The slow-moving storm which made landfall on Friday as a Category 1 hurricane has dumped record amounts of rain - potentially up to 40 inches in some areas - and continues to flood rivers and highways. In Florence's path are also numerous coal ash ponds from power plants - the waste can contain toxins such as mercury, arsenic, and lead.

As Michael Biesecker of the Associated Press reported:
Duke [Energy] spokeswoman Paige Sheehan said Saturday evening that about 2,000 cubic yards (1,530 cubic meters) of ash, enough to fill roughly 180 dump trucks, have been displaced at the Sutton Plant and that contaminated storm water likely flowed into Sutton Lake, the plant's cooling pond.

The company hasn't yet determined if the weir that drains the cooling pond was open or whether any contamination may have flowed into the swollen Cape Fear River.
In a statement Saturday, Duke Energy said "the company does not believe this incident poses a risk to public health or the environment. The company is conducting environmental sampling as well."

Comment: Duke Energy has a history of contaminating North Carolina's waterways:
Last year's huge coal ash spill in North Carolina may cost Duke Energy $100M or the cost of a permit

Duke told North Carolina regulators that more than 3 million gallons of toxic chemicals were leaking near local rivers and lakes every day. The leaks have been traced to 200 different seeps at 14 coal-fired plants. Two seeps in particular leak almost 1 million gallons of waste a day.

Cloud Precipitation

Tropical Storm Florence leaves 11 dead as it dumps 'epic' amount of rainfall on North Carolina

New Bern floods

There are still rescues underway in the North Carolina town of New Bern

Towns have endured more than two feet of rain and forecasters say that more than three feet of water could bring more flooding

Tropical Storm Florence has left at least 11 people dead as it continues to dump an "epic" amount of rainfall on North Carolina.

Rivers are rising towards record levels as thousands of people have been ordered to evacuate the US state.

President Donald Trump has issued a disaster declaration amid fears North Carolina will experience its most destructive bout of flooding in history.

Some towns have endured more than two feet of rain and forecasters say that more than three feet of water could bring major flooding further inland in the coming days.

A mother and her baby are among those who have been killed by Florence, which was initially categorised as a hurricane with 120mph winds.

By Saturday morning the winds weakened to 50mph but the storm's slow speed means that communities in North Carolina are receiving a prolonged battering by torrential rain.

Cloud Precipitation

Walnut-sized hail and flash floods hit Turkey's northern provinces

Walnut-sized hail hammered Turkey's northern Kastamonu province
Walnut-sized hail hammered Turkey's northern Kastamonu province on Sept. 13, 2018.
Provinces across Turkey's Marmara and Black Sea regions were hit with flooding and hailstorms on Thursday afternoon and evening, as rain and thunderstorms are predicted to continue into Friday.

In northern Turkey near the Black Sea, the city of Kastamonu was hit with walnut-sized hail for 20 minutes, smashing windows of vehicles and buildings, and puncturing walls and roof tiles.

The city lost electricity amid the storm. Downed trees blocked road transport.

Firefighters and Disaster and Emergency Management Presidency (AFAD) were working to assess and respond to the damage.

The Marmara city of Bandırma in Turkey's northwestern Balıkesir province experienced disastrous flooding, as social media users shared videos of streets that were turned to rivers.

Numerous businesses and homes were flooded by the deluge. Several houses were also struck by lightning, city officials said.