Monday, January 7, 2013

Australia - New South Wales faces WORST FIRE DANGER DAY IN HISTORY. The worst bushfire conditions in many years are expected to hit NSW on Tuesday, firefighters say.
AS NSW braces for the worst fire danger day in the state's history, people are being urged to leave campsites and evacuate homes in areas most at risk. A total fire ban will be in place across NSW on Tuesday as the state experiences severe, extreme and catastrophic fire conditions. "Having had RECORD RAIN... we are about to have RECORD DANGERS."
Temperatures in the state's far west are predicted to hit 45 degrees, while in Sydney the mercury is forecast to climb to 43 degrees - the third highest temperature on record. Those living in Shoalhaven, the Illawarra and the southern ranges were urged to be prepared, with a catastrophic fire danger warning in place. "It is the worst fire danger day that parts of the state have experienced in the history of NSW."
It would be "very rare" for there to be no loss of property but they were confident that loss of life could be avoided. The Fire Service Commissioner said people camping in the worst-affected areas should leave as emergency services closed national parks, camping grounds and other facilities there. "Pack up and be out on the road first thing tomorrow." Where appropriate, nursing homes and child care centres will also be evacuated.
It was "not recommended" that people living in catastrophic fire danger zones remained behind to protect their properties. "We are talking about FIRE DANGER RIGHT OFF THE CONVENTIONAL CHART. Some fires will start and spread so quickly that there will be little or no time to issue a warning."
An abundance of fuel and strong north-westerly winds of between 60 to 80km/h have heightened fire dangers, with about 90 fires burning across the state on Monday. Twenty were still not contained on Monday afternoon. For Sydney, The Bureau of Meteorology NSW regional director said hot weather would begin early on Tuesday and persist into the early hours of Wednesday. Temperatures are then set to increase again heading into the weekend.
A "watch and act" warning was issued on Monday afternoon with a fast moving 400 hectare grass fire burning out of control about 14km northeast of Wagga Wagga, threatening the village of Oura.

**So what if you feel special,
everything is sacred.
Get to work.
Let go of desires and power,
and get to work giving your gifts.**
Haidakhan Baba

No update on Tuesday this week.

Live Seismograms - Worldwide (update every 30 minutes)

This morning -
None 5.0 or larger.

Yesterday -
1/6/13 -

Volcano Webcams

January 5 - Extrusion of basaltic lava continued unabated at Plosky Tolbachik. In fact, KVERT reported a slight increase in volcanic tremor amplitude during the past day.
Deep earthquakes (12-15 km) continued beneath Mammoth Mountain volcano (California). Tilt meter and dilatometer data show the slight deformation occurring in conjunction with the ongoing earthquake swarm as well as a strain “step” produced by the volcanic system’s reaction to passing wave from the M7.5 Queen Charlotte Islands earthquake. The Long Valley volcanic system is well known for being sensitive/reactive to local and distant tectonic earthquakes, as are many other volcanic areas worldwide. (info on additional volcanoes at link)

In the Western Pacific -
Tropical storm 01w (Sonamu) was located approximately 250 nm south-southeast of Ho Chi Minh City, Vietnam.


Australia - Severe fire conditions for northern Victoria. Parts of northern Victoria will face severe bushfire conditions on Tuesday with total fire bans likely to be declared.
Lightning strikes have already sparked blazes in north-eastern Victoria and there are also fears that fires across the Murray River in NSW may reach Victoria if they take hold. Northern parts of the state have already experienced several days in a row above 40C and that hot weather will continue on Tuesday. Lightning strikes could take a day to become a fire. There had been lightning strikes each afternoon over past three days in northern Victoria and aircraft were monitoring them.
Paramedics have again reminded people not leave children in cars. Ambulance Victoria said they were attending between four and seven children who had been left in cars each day. Significant work was done to fight a large bushfire at Kentbruck, near Portland in the state's southwest but they were no longer confident it would be brought under control on Monday. The fire has been burning since Friday and is slow moving but has the potential to impact properties in the Mumbannar, Winnap, Drik Drik and Greenwald areas. The fire is in farming area and there are no communities under direct threat.
Extreme weather deadly for the vulnerable - Australia's most vulnerable people are at increased risk of injury and death because community organisations are struggling to cope with day-to-day operations let alone plan for extreme weather events, the country's peak social services group has warned. The Australian Council of Social Service has found a poor level of preparation for extreme weather among community organisations, with the likelihood many would permanently collapse.

Wildfire-hit regions in Tasmania - crews continued to battle blazes in the state. No deaths have been reported in the fires, which broke out on Thursday on the south coast amid a heat wave. But more than 100 buildings have been destroyed and communities in some areas remain cut off.
Emergency payments would be provided to give people immediate help and damage would be assessed to enable communities to be rebuilt. Fires were still being fought, and they are calling for residents in Tasmania and also in New South Wales, where very high temperatures are expected, to stay alert. "This is the time to be vigilant, and I do want to pass that message to the people of New South Wales as the temperature gauge starts to rise." In Dunalley, the town worst affected by the fires, searches of fire-hit properties were continuing. "Police have searched 245 properties in Dunalley and to the north of the town, including 90 badly damaged or destroyed buildings. The preliminary screening search has discovered no deceased people at this stage." Searches would continue in the Murdunna and Sommers Bay areas, where more properties were known to have been destroyed.
A number of people remained unaccounted for, police said, urging local residents and tourists who had not yet registered with them to get in touch. Police said a convoy had delivered equipment and resources to the Tasman Peninsula - cut off by fire for several days - on Sunday. The region's main access road was also expected to open partially on Monday and boats were due to deliver goods.
Several fires were continuing to burn across the state, according to the Tasmanian Fire Service, including three rated as dangerous that were not under control. Police said none of the blazes appeared to be the result of arson. Late last week the Australian Bureau of Meteorology warned that the heatwave which has affected much of the nation would continue for several days. It said thick vegetation caused by two years of heavy rain could mean increased wildfire risk. Both New South Wales and Canberra are braced for temperatures and winds to peak on Tuesday.