Tuesday, October 15, 2013

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Lily Leung

LARGEST QUAKES so far today -

Yesterday, 10/14/13 -

Deadly Philippine quake hits Bohol and Cebu - More than 30 people [85 reported by national television] have been reported dead after an earthquake measuring 7.2 magnitude hit the central Philippines. The quake struck below the island of Bohol, known for its sandy beaches. People were killed as structures collapsed in Bohol and nearby Cebu province. Several buildings and churches were damaged by the quake.
The quake struck at 08:12 (00:12GMT) on a national holiday in the country. 16 people were confirmed dead in Bohol and 15 in Cebu, considered the Philippines' second city. One was reported dead from the neighbouring island of Siquijor. Dozens of others were also being treated for injuries. At least five people died when part of a fishing port collapsed in Cebu. Two more people died and others were injured when a roof at a market fell. At least three people also died during a stampede at a sports complex in Cebu. "There was panic when the quake happened and there was a rush toward the exit."
The tremor triggered power outages in parts of Bohol, Cebu and neighbouring areas. Cebu officials have declared a state of calamity in the province. People fled to the streets in Cebu, one of the country's major cities, as buildings and homes were damaged . A city hall building was damaged on the island. Heavy damage to historic churches, some dating back to the Spanish colonial period in the 1500s and the 1600s, was also reported in Bohol and Cebu.
It was fortunate that it was a national holiday and the students were not in school. There werereports of many aftershocks following the quake. (photos)
Low-rise buildings collapsed on at least two islands and historic churches cracked and crumbled during the quake, which sparked panic, cut power and transport links and forced hospitals to evacuate patients.
Philippines quake - Damage photos.

Current tropical storms - maps and details.

* In the Western Pacific -
- Typhoon Wipha is located approximately 593 nm south-southwest of Yokosuka, Japan.

* In the Eastern Pacific -
- Tropical storm Octave is located 40 mi (60 km) WNW of Cabo San Lazaro, Mexico. Octave is weakening as it approaches the Baja California peninsula where a tropical stormwarning is in effect. Heavy rainfall is the main threat.

- Tropical storm Priscilla is located about 600 mi (970 km) SW of the southern tip of Baja California. Priscilla should weaken to a tropical depression today.
Storm summary - Huge and powerful Category 2 Typhoon Wipha is now weakening as it heads north towards Japan. The storm peaked as a Category 4 storm with 135 mph winds on Sunday, but has weakened to 110 mph winds. Today, Wipha will encounter cooler waters and higher wind shear, which should substantially weaken the storm as it recurves to the northeast and passes just offshore from Tokyo. The coast of Japan should experience winds below hurricane force, if the core of Wipha passes offshore as expected, but heavy rains of 4 - 8" capable of causing damaging flooding will likely affect portions of the coast, including Tokyo. Heavy rains from Wipha may be a concern for the Fukushima nuclear site.

Typhoon Nari nearing landfall in Vietnam - Torrential rains are falling in Vietnam due to Category 1 Typhoon Nari, which is nearing landfall in the central part of the country. More than 180,000 people have been evacuated in advance of the storm. Nari battered the Philippines on Friday, killing thirteen people and leaving 2.1 million people without power on the main Philippine island of Luzon.

In the Eastern Pacific, we have two tropical cyclones: newly-developed Tropical Storm Priscilla, and Tropical Storm Octave. Octave is the only one that is a threat to land, and the 60-mph tropical storm is headed NNW towards Mexico's Baja Peninsula, where 3 - 6" of rain is expected over the next few days. Octave is expected to dissipate before making it to Baja, due to increasing dry air and wind shear.
Octave and Priscilla are embedded in a large plume of tropical moisture that is riding up to the northeast over Mexico and Texas. Flood watches and warnings are posted over many areas of Texas, where widespread rains of 2 - 6" have fallen over the past day. While the heavy rains have caused some moderate flooding, the precipitation is mostly welcome, as it will make a substantial dent in the multi-year drought that has gripped much of Texas. Much of the moisture generating the heavy rains in Texas is actually coming from the Gulf of Mexico, due to the clockwise flow of low-level air around a high pressure system over the Upper Midwest.

Typhoon Nari kills five, causes major damage in Vietnam. Typhoon Nari slammed into central Vietnam early Tuesday killing five people, injuring 29, ripping roofs off homes and damaging roads.

India - Thousands marooned by floods. Heavy downpour triggered by Cyclone Phailin on Monday led to floods in several rivers in Odisha. Workers are battling to rescue tens of thousands of people marooned by the rising flood waters in Orissa, after the state was hit by THE STRONGEST CYCLONE IN 14 YEARS.
Flood waters have left nearly 100,000 people stranded in Mayurbhanj and Balasore districts. The death toll from the cyclone has risen to 27 in Orissa, with four people killed in the floods. A flood alert has been also sounded in the neighbouring state of Bihar. There are fears of heavy rainfall in at least two dozen districts after the weakened storm changed course and moved towards northern parts of Bihar bordering Nepal.
Cyclone Phailin crashed into eastern India over the weekend and flattened many coastal homes, uprooted trees and blocked roads in Orissa and Andhra Pradesh states. But the evacuation effort - described by officials as "the biggest in India's history for such an event" - ensured the death toll remained low. As the storm weakened a vast relief operation got under way to help up to one million displaced people. Now, in Orissa, major rivers including Budhabalanga and Subarnarekha are high, leading to flooding in two districts.
Separately, hundreds of thousands of people who were evacuated before the cyclone have begun returning to their homes. Many, however, remain in temporary shelters because their villages and homes have been destroyed or inundated. The massive storm made landfall on Saturday evening, with winds of about 200 km per hour (125mph). It began weakening on Sunday as it made its way north-west.
But the intense storm has made more than half-a-million people homeless. The storm tore down power and communication lines and knocked out road and rail links, making an assessment difficult. An estimated 5,000 sq km of mostly paddy crops have been destroyed, causing a loss of some $320 million. (map & photo)


All Sky Fireball Network - NEW: Every night, a network of NASA all-sky cameras scans the skies above the United States for fireballs - meteors brighter than Venus. Automated software maintained by NASA's Meteoroid Environment Office calculates their orbits, velocity, penetration depth in Earth's atmosphere and many other characteristics. Daily results are presented on Spaceweather.com. On Oct. 14, the network detected 7 fireballs.