The National Weather Service says the heavy rains have lit up their radars like a Christmas tree. But it's another part of the system that has peaked their attention. "It's starting to develop it's own system directly underneath the low that is taking on Tropical Cyclone characteristics." A Tropical Cyclone developing out of a Kona low in December is EXTREMELY RARE; there have been only 2 documented cases in recent history. The Central Pacific Hurricane Center may be activated. But the Cyclone would likely not be a threat and have no impact on local weather. (photos)
Wernher von Braun
LARGEST QUAKES -
This morning -
None 5.0 or higher.
5.0 ANDREANOF ISLANDS, ALEUTIAN ISLANDS
5.3 PAGAN REG., N. MARIANA ISLANDS
5.0 SANTA CRUZ ISLANDS
5.1 SOUTHEAST OF EASTER ISLAND
5.1 PACIFIC-ANTARCTIC RIDGE
5.1 UNIMAK ISLAND REGION, ALASKA
5.1 NORTHERN SUMATRA, INDONESIA
5.4 SAMOA ISLANDS REGION
5.4 PAGAN REG., N. MARIANA ISLANDS
5.4 PHILIPPINE ISLANDS REGION
5.0 ANDREANOF ISLANDS, ALEUTIAN ISLANDS
5.1 ACRE, BRAZIL
5.4 BANDA SEA
5.1 REVILLA GIGEDO ISLANDS REGION
PHILIPPINES - Bulusan on high alert after new ash explosion. Government public works crews near restive Mt. Bulusan in Bicol were placed on high alert Friday a day after the volcano spewed ash anew Thursday.
On Thursday, Bulusan showed signs of life anew after days of relative quiet, producing grayish steam and ash column that rose to about 500 meters above the crater rim and drifted southwest. Meanwhile, the Philippine Institute of Volcanology and Seismology said Friday that at least four volcanic earthquakes were detected in the last 24 hours. No steaming was observed at the northwest and southeast vents while weak to very weak steam emission were seen rising from the summit crater. No sulfur dioxide flux was detected during the measurements conducted Thursday. Alert Level 1 remains enforced over Bulusan Volcano area. "Because of the prevailing wind direction, people residing in the northwest and southwest sectors of the volcano are reminded to take precautions against ashfalls. Civil aviation authorities must also warn pilots to avoid flying close to the volcano’s summit as ejected ash and volcanic fragments from sudden explosions may pose hazards to aircrafts."
TROPICAL STORMS -
No current tropical cyclones.
SEVERE RAIN STORMS, FLOODING, LANDSLIDES -
AUSTRALIA - Authorities were dropping food and water to people stranded by the WORST FLOODING IN 50 YEARS around Carnarvon. Carnarvon, about 900km north of Perth and at the mouth of the Gascoyne River, is gripped by its worst flood since 1960. Residents were warned on Saturday to evacuate as heavy rain pounded the region overnight. On Sunday, 30 people stuck on rooftops at Gascoyne Junction, about 170km inland from Carnarvon, and six more at Meka station, were flown by helicopter to Carnarvon. (photos)
CALIFORNIA - Southland slogs through STORM SYSTEM OF A DECADE. As Southern California slogged through a deluge not seen in years, forecasters warned that three more powerful storms will target Los Angeles before Thursday. Sunday's storm brought some floods, mudslides and RECORD-BREAKING RAINFALL, and there's more to come. Three new storms will hit by Thursday in a weather system seen only once every 10 to 15 years.
The subtropical drenching came from a weather system SO RARE that it arrives about once every decade. In the last four days, downtown Los Angeles has received 3.75 inches of rain — a quarter of the rainfall it typically receives for the ENTIRE YEAR The warm Pacific storm swept the entire state. It rattled Cape Mendocino with thunder, dumped 9 feet of snow on Mammoth Mountain, flooded streets in usually dry Bakersfield and tossed 2 feet of floodwater onto a residential street in La Crescenta. Downtown L.A. saw 2.3 inches, SHATTERING A RECORD set in 1921. More than 3 inches of rain fell in Pasadena and San Gabriel, breaking decades-old RECORDS. The rain was expected to taper off overnight. The first of the next three storms was predicted to arrive tonight, with more pulses arriving Tuesday and Wednesday. 3 to 5 additional inches of rain could fall on L.A.'s coast and valleys. By Wednesday night, the total may have hit 5 to 7 inches of rain in those regions and more than 10 inches in the foothills and mountains. "I think you guys are going to see a lot of flooding problems." Some Los Angeles areas had already seen flooding Sunday.
Warm, subtropical storms striking Southern California in December are HIGHLY UNUSUAL. Normally, a region of high pressure over the central Pacific Ocean deflects storms away from California and into Oregon and Washington. But that pressure has weakened, allowing moist, warm Pacific storm systems to stretch from Asia through Hawaii into California. "It just keeps on coming." Such a weather pattern pops up once every 10 to 15 years.
The Pacific storms will head east, moving through the Rocky Mountains, and could reach Minneapolis in time to dump 3 to 6 inches of snow for Monday night's football game between the Minnesota Vikings and the Chicago Bears. The match will be played outdoors at the University of Minnesota after last week's collapse of the Metrodome due to heavy snowfall. The storm could hit the East Coast by the end of the week, dumping significant snowfall on Philadelphia, New York City and Boston on Christmas Day for the first time since 2002
HEAVY SNOW / EXTREME COLD -
NEW YORK - Syracuse has received 70.8 inches of snow this month, BREAKING THE RECORD FOR SNOWIEST DECEMBER.
'Cyclone' Petra wreaks havoc in Italy, Germany - Italy has been hit by a cold spell sending air temperatures down to minus 16 degrees Celsius, brought by the powerful Cyclone Petra, with the famous beaches of Sardinia and Sicily blanketed with snow.
In Austria air temperatures have plummeted to minus 22 degrees. In neighboring Germany motorists are battling heavy snowfalls, which in the past 24 hours have caused hundreds of road accidents that left 2 people dead and more than 40 injured.
Hundreds of thousands of passengers are stranded throughout Europe because harsh weather conditions have either forced airports to close or severely disrupted flight schedules. Gatwick, Stansted, Edinburgh and Southampton airports in Britain are open but delays or cancellations can be expected. London's Heathrow Airport reopened at 6am this morning following severe restrictions on flights over the weekend. Hundreds of travellers are stranded at Frankfurt Airport in Germany following the cancellation of almost 500 flights. In France, almost half the flights at Roissy-Charles de Gaulle and Orly airports have been cancelled. Most of the remaining flights are delayed and more than 20,000 passengers are stranded at Charles de Gaulle alone.
It has been ONE OF THE COLDEST NIGHTS ON RECORD in Northern Ireland. Castlederg in Co Tyrone recorded a temperature of -18C overnight and there have been fresh snowfalls in Derry, Antrim and Down.
SPACE WEATHER -
Earth's stratosphere is as clear as it's been in more than 50 years. "Since 1996, lunar eclipses have been bright, which means the stratosphere is relatively clear of volcanic aerosols. This is the longest period with a clear stratosphere since before 1960." A lunar eclipse observed in 1992 was very dark after the Philippine volcano Pinatubo spewed millions of tons of gas and ash into the atmosphere. The state of the stratosphere affects climate; a clear stratosphere "lets the sunshine in" to warm the Earth below. "The lunar eclipse record indicates a clear stratosphere over the past decade, and this has contributed about 0.2 degrees to recent warming."