Sunday, September 15, 2013

Global Disaster Watch is on Facebook

**I have woven a parachute
out of everything broken.**
William Stafford

LARGEST QUAKES so far today -

Yesterday, 9/14/13 -

9/13/13 -

Tungurahua volcano (Ecuador) - Increasing degassing, crater glow. The volcano observatory reports a change in activity, which could herald a new eruptive phase in the near future. Starting from Friday at approximately 17:00 (local time), increased steaming and gas emissions were visible, producing a column reaching about 1 km height. Incandescence in the crater area could be detected at night as well.
Previously, activity had been consisting of weak steaming producing a column of less than 200 m height. Seismically, there has been a slight increase in the number of events related to rock fracturing and fluid movements within the volcano, but seismic activity still remains at a level considered moderate to low.

Ubinas volcano (Peru) - Peru’s government declared Thursday a state of emergency in nine districts in southern Peru affected by recent activity by the Ubinas volcano. The nine districts include Ubinas, Matalaque, Chojata, Omate, Coalaque, Ichuna, Lloque and Yunga in the Moquegua region, and the San Juan de Tarucani district in Arequipa region. During the 60-day state of emergency, the regional and local governments should carry out “immediate, exceptional measures” to ensure the safety of the local population. The population in the village of Querapi, closest to the Ubinas volcano, is to be moved over the next several months.
A yellow alert was declared earlier this month after the volcano started to spew ash. Although it has been active for some time, the previous eruption of ash occurred in 2009. According to vulcanologists monitoring the volcano, the real danger is from ash, which affects animals and people since it permeates the pasturelands and water. The lava from this type of volcano is viscous and moves very slowly, cooling and hardening quickly. The Ubinas volcano is located in the Moquegua region, and about 70 kilometers from the city of Arequipa.


* In the Western Pacific -
Tropical storm Man-Yi is located approximately 484 nm southwest of Yokosuka, Japan.

* In the Atlantic Ocean -
- Hurricane Ingrid is located about 175 mi (280 km) E of Tampico, Mexico. Expected to make landfall on Monday. Ingird is expected to produce 10 to 15 inches of rain over a large part of eastern Mexico, with isolated amounts around 25 inches possible. A Hurricane Warning is in effect.

* In the Eastern Pacific -
Tropical storm Manuel is located about 40 mi (65 km) SSW of Lazaro Cardenas, Mexico. Could be a hurricane when it makes landfall today. Manuel is expected to produce 10 to 15 inches of rain over portions of the Mexican states of Oaxaca and Guerrero, with isolated maximum amounts of 25 inches possible. A storm surge is expected to produce coastal flooding near and to the east of where the center of Manuel makes landfall. Near the coast, the surge will be accompanied by large and destructive waves. A Hurricane Warning is in effect.


Tropical storms hit both coasts of Mexico - Tropical storm systems on opposite sides of Mexico killed five people and left a trail of destruction. Heavy rains lashed Mexico’s Gulf Coast Friday as Tropical Storm Ingrid formed over water about 60 miles away, threatening more damage in a state where landslides and flooding have killed dozens of people in recent weeks.
At least three major rivers in the eastern state of Veracruz were flooding or close to overflowing their banks, and hundreds of people were evacuating low-lying areas. The storm’s maximum sustained winds were near 45 mph. It was nearly stationary, centered about 60 miles east of the port city of Veracruz, but forecasters said it was likely to advance north and curve into the coast near Tampico during Mexico’s long Independence Day weekend. The system was expected to dump 10 to 15 inches of rain over a large part of eastern Mexico with 25 inches in some places.
On the other side of the country, Tropical Storm Manuel prompted Mexico’s government to issue warnings for the Pacific coast from Acapulco to Punta San Telmo. Manuel had sustained winds of 40 mph, and the center was located about 150 miles south-southwest of Zihuatanejo. It was moving west slowly and should be near the coast of southwestern Mexico by early today. The storm is expected to produce 10 to 15 inches of rain over parts of the Mexican states of Oaxaca and Guerrero.

Meanwhile, far out over the Atlantic, Humberto weakened to a tropical storm and did not threaten land. Gabrielle weakened to a tropical depression and remained well off the U.S. East Coast.

Ingrid will be dumping some of its heaviest rains on areas that are already saturated from the rains of Tropical Depression Eight and Tropical Storm Fernand. Additional heavy rains affected the region early this week, leading to flash flooding and multiple landslides, including one massive landslide in the town of Manzanatitla on Monday that killed eight people. It won't take much rain to generate a catastrophic flood disaster. Ingrid is the most dangerous Atlantic tropical cyclone of 2013 thus far, due to its rainfall potential. Ingrid is embedded in an exceptionally moist environment, and is already bringing heavy rains to the Mexican coast in Veracruz state.
On Saturday, the Mexican Weather Service had already received a report of about 8 inches of rain in eastern Mexican state of Oaxaca due to Manuel's rains. The massive rains that will fall in Mexico from this one-two punch of extremely wet tropical storms will cause an extremely dangerous and expensive flood disaster in Mexico.


+ Colorado - More rain expected. Forecasters predict local downpours and flooding will persist through the weekend. Another round of storms swept into battered Colorado on Saturday as weary residents reeled from days of death and destruction wrought by historic flooding. Evacuations continued at a frantic pace as rescuers encountered swamped roads, inundated homes and the dark forecast of more rain to come.
"It is a sinking feeling when you realize that when some people call ... we are not going to be able to get to them," said the Boulder County Sheriff. "But we are making great progress." More than 170 people unaccounted for in the Boulder area were not considered missing yet, though they had not contacted family members. [CNN was reporting 500 unaccounted for.]
Days of torrential rains have left at least four people dead and another missing and presumed dead. Thousands of people have fled homes in an area that normally sees less than 2 inches of rain in all of September but has been deluged by more than 14 inches this week alone.
The lastest storms "could bring another 1-3 inches of rain. We don't expect quite the level of intensity we've seen the last few days, but the soil is saturated, so it won't take much to do damage." A missing woman could become the fifth confirmed death. Witnesses saw floodwaters from the Big Thompson River destroy her home in the Cedar Cove area. "We're sure there are going to be additional homes that have been destroyed, but we won't know that for a while. I expect that we're going to continue to receive reports of confirmed missing and confirmed fatalities throughout the next several days."
Many of those driven from their homes may not be able to return for weeks. Early Saturday, National Guard helicopters evacuated hundreds of residents from Jamestown, a mountain town northwest of Boulder. "We are not going to force anyone from their home," but "if they don't come today, we want people to know that we may not be able to get them tomorrow."
Flood warnings remained in effect Saturday from Denver to the Wyoming border. Parts of New Mexico and Texas also were dealing with torrential rains, flooding and evacuations. About 15 miles north of Boulder, the Colorado National Guard began evacuating 2,500 residents of Lyons at daybreak Friday. "There's no way out of town. There's no way into town. So, basically, now we're just on an island."
The sheriff expects the number of those unaccounted for — and the death toll — to rise, because most of the western part of the county remained inaccessible. "The things that worry us are what we don't know. We don't know how many lives are lost, we don't know about homes lost."
Flooding closed Interstate 25, the state's main north-south highway, north of Denver to the Wyoming border. In neighboring Weld County, more acres of farmland have been turned into lakes and more than 140 roads have been closed. The flooding was called an "unprecedented event." (extensive slideshow)
Colorado flooding - Video (3:35). Dams breached, whole towns cut off, water still rising.
+ Boulder, Colorado rain was a GREATER THAN 1-IN-1000 YEAR RAINFALL EVENT. These are the sort of rains one expects on the coast in a tropical storm, not in the interior of North America! Boulder's total 3-day rainfall as of Thursday night was 12.30". Some other rainfall totals through Thursday night include 14.60" at Eldorado Springs, 11.88" at Aurora, and 9.08" at Colorado Springs.
The rains were due to a strong, slow-moving upper level low pressure system to the west of Colorado that got trapped to the south of an UNUSUALLY STRONG RIDGE of high pressure over Western Canada. This is the same sort of ODD ATMOSPHERIC FLOW PATTERN that led to the most expensive flood disaster in Canadian history, the $5.3 billion Calgary flood of mid-June this summer.


Meteor lit up the sky over Georgia, Alabama on Monday. A baseball-size fragment of a comet entered Earth's atmosphere above Alabama at 8:18 p.m. CDT Monday.
NASA officials say the meteor traveled at a speed of 76,000 mph. They say just three seconds after hitting the atmosphere, it disintegrated 25 miles above the central Alabama town of Woodstock, producing a flash of light. Because it penetrated so deep into Earth's atmosphere, eyewitnesses heard sonic booms.