Copahue Volcano Eruption Imminent - The Copahue volcano located on the border of Chile and Argentina recorded an average of 130 seismic events per hour over the last 24 hours, which has officials worried of that eruption might occur before the evacuation of the Chile side is complete. Chile and Argentina are evacuating nearly 3,000 people after officials issued a red alert for the increasingly active volcano. Officials warned the volcano could erupt any time after a series of tremors and gas clouds from the crater hit the area.
into the hands of people who weren’t
smart enough to get out of jury duty.**
LARGEST QUAKES -
Live Seismograms - Worldwide (update every 30 minutes)
This morning -
5.1 KHABAROVSKIY KRAY, RUSSIA
5.2 SOUTHWEST OF SUMATRA, INDONESIA
5.0 SERAM, INDONESIA
5.1 LUZON, PHILIPPINES
5.2 PRINCE EDWARD ISLANDS REGION
3.8 earthquake in the Irish sea, 10 miles off the North Welsh coast. The quake's tremors were felt over a 90 mile radius and thousands of people felt the earth move as they were shaken from their beds by the earthquake which rocked three countries. The quake rattled doors, windows and crockery. The quake was measured at a depth of 8km and was followed four minutes later by a smaller, 1.7-magnitude tremor at a depth of 3km.
People living along the east coast of Ireland reported a low rumbling noise. "This was the biggest in the area since a 4.3 in August 1984." The UK is hit by about 200 earthquakes every year - but most of them are so small, that nobody notices them.
Magnitude-4.8 quake shakes part of Southern California coast - The epicenter was in the Santa Barbara Channel region about 100 miles west of Los Angeles. California typically experiences about 15 quakes every year with magnitudes greater than 4.6. The Santa Barbara region has been seismically quiet in recent years.
The epicenter of Wednesday's quake was not far from the epicenter of the devastating 1925 earthquake in Santa Barbara. Recorded at a magnitude 6.8, the temblor destroyed much of Santa Barbara's downtown on State Street.
Pacaya volcano erupts in Guatemala , sending volcanic material more than 400 metres in the air. The Institute of Vulcanology warned that the eruption could intensify with ash rising as high as 1000 to 2000 metres, posing a threat to air traffic at Guatemala's international airport. "Ash could spread over Guatemala City due to the direction of the wind."
The last major eruption of Pacaya, in May 2010, claimed the life of a television journalist, drove thousands of people from their homes and forced the closure of the Guatemala City airport for five days. Pacaya is 50 kilometres south of the capital and one of three active volcanoes in Guatemala.
Explosive activity at Vanuatu’s Mt Yasur volcano has increased in recent days. - The activity level of the volcano on Tanna Island is still at alert level 2 but an increase to 3 in the near future is possible. The risk of volcanic projections near the volcano crater remains as thick steam and ash is being emitted from active vents, with ash fall in communities downwind.
An increase in activity was noted in early April when bombs were ejected from the volcano to the parking area below the summit cone, and the activity status was raised from 1 to 2. It is recommended that all communities, visitors and travel agents take the current situation seriously.
Mount Etna eruptions becoming more violent, and scientists are baffled as to why - Mount Etna is spitting lava more violently than it has in years. The volcano is raging. Fountains of lava, some taller than the Eiffel Tower, shoot from its mouth every few weeks, flowing in red-hot streams into the surrounding valleys. There have been 13 eruptions since the beginning of February.
Etna is considered the most heavily studied volcano in the world, and it is thoroughly wired with sensors, but it is also the world's most unpredictable volcano. In addition to lava, Etna spits out vast amounts of data — several gigabytes a day, coming from magnetic field sensors, GPS altimeters and seismic sensors. Despite this wealth of data, Etna still poses a conundrum to scientists.
“The eruptions in recent weeks have been UNUSUALLY FIERCE and explosive. There have been lava fountain events in the past, but RARELY IN SUCH RAPID SUCCESSION. This time, the range of ash fall is much wider than usual."
The mountain is located at precisely the spot where the African and European tectonic plates rub against each other like two giant ice floes. At this plate margin, lava with low viscosity flows upward from a depth of 30 kilometers into a reservoir of magma two kilometers beneath the summit. “The stream of magma doesn’t move uniformly, but in spurts, vibrating as if it were in a hydraulic pump. This makes Etna so unpredictable.” In 1972, using seismic sensors, a scientist discovered a “pulse rate” of sorts in the stream of magma, which is forced through the vent at a rate of 72 beats per minute — coincidentally, at a rate similar to that of the human heartbeat.
TROPICAL STORMS -
In the Eastern Pacific -
Remnants of Barbara were located about 25 mi (40 km) NNW of Coatzacoalcos, Mexico. The remnants of Barbara are expected to produce additional rainfall amounts of 3 to 5 inches across portions of southeastern Mexico, bringing storm totals in excess of 25 inches. These rains could cause life-threatening flash floods and mud slides.
Barbara, weakened to a tropical storm, kills 2 people - Tropical storm Barbara weakened to a depression as it crossed southern Mexico early on Thursday headed toward the Gulf of Mexico, with warnings lifted as wind speeds dropped. A 61-year-old man from Colorado died while surfing at Playa Azul.
A storm with two names: Will Pacific Barbara morph into Atlantic Andrea? - Barbara, the second named storm in the East Pacific this year, strengthened to a Category 1 hurricane just prior to making landfall on Wednesday afternoon near Tonalá in the Isthmus of Tehuantepec, Mexico. It is just now re-emerging over water, this time in the Gulf of Mexico.
As of 11 a.m. EDT on Thursday, it had weakened to a tropical depression with winds of 30 mph. Could it redevelop and reach storm intensity once more? Although it is poorly organized after a draining 15-hour trek over land, there is still a mid-level circulation and a few strong associated thunderstorms.
As for its future prospects, conditions in the Bay of Campeche are marginal for development. Although water temperatures are plenty warm, upper-level winds are quite strong. Further north toward the central Gulf, the wind shear is outright hostile.
In the unlikely event that it does manage to reform, it would start over with Atlantic numbering and naming. In other words, it would lose its Barbara heritage and become tropical depression 1 and then tropical storm Andrea. Steering winds are weak, and the storm or its remnants would drift slowly north or west near the Mexican coast.
It’s quite RARE to have a tropical cyclone move from the East Pacific to the Atlantic and be a named storm in both basins. In mid-October 1923, the 6th named Atlantic storm made such a Pacific to Atlantic crossing. Its slightly less rare to have the opposite occur. In either case, the storm names changes when a storm crosses basins. There is no Barbara in the 2013 Atlantic list, so the Pacific-born storm would require a new name from the Atlantic list.
Saturday is the first official day of the Atlantic hurricane season and the first few names on the list are Andrea, Barry, and Chantal. As of now, the basin looks quiet for the foreseeable future, with the exception of the disturbance in the Bay of Campeche.
SEVERE RAIN STORMS, FLOODING, LANDSLIDES -
Weather going from bad to worse says insurance boss in Canada. The president of the Insurance Bureau of Canada is offering a gloomy forecast of more extreme weather in the years to come and is urging municipalities to fix crumbling storm-water infrastructure to prepare.
River ice jam that led to Alaska flooding churns - A colossal river ice jam that caused major flooding in a remote Alaska town was starting to churn Wednesday as water finally chewed ice chunks away from the stubborn, frozen mass after most of the residents were forced to flee from the rising water.
An aerial survey Wednesday afternoon revealed chunks of ice have broken off at the front of the 30-mile ice jam on the Yukon River. That means the jam will move soon and waters will begin to recede in the waterlogged town of Galena, 20 miles upriver. Several hundred people are estimated to have fled the community of Galena where the river ice jam has caused major flooding, sending water washing over roads and submerging buildings.
The damage has left the town without power, fresh water and cell phone reception. The flooding lifted homes off foundations and has threatened to break a dike protecting the airport, virtually the only dry spot left in the community of 500 where floodwaters washed out roads and submerged homes. In a place where spring flooding is nothing new, many homes are built on stilts, but the fast rising water reached them, too. There are no reports of injuries.
The disaster has left people feeling traumatized and vulnerable. "We didn't have any idea how vast the flood was going to be." Now that the water is trying to push through the jam, conditions could change quickly. When the jam breaks, the downriver community of Koyukuk will be at risk of flooding. In an earlier flight Wednesday, the ice was locked firmly in place, despite 80 degree temperatures. The hot weather is expected to last a couple days before cooling slightly.
Flooding has forced hundreds of people to evacuate from their homes in eastern Norway. The weather has been unsettled across the region over recent weeks, and in just the last couple of days the rain has turned very heavy.
Lillehammer reported 64mm of rain on Wednesday, which is more than is expected in the entire month. Melting snow has also added to the problems. On 18 and 19 May, the temperatures in Lillehammer soared to 29C. In the surrounding mountains, this sudden rise in temperature caused the snow to suddenly melt. As the water poured down the mountainside, some of the rivers burst their banks. One of the worst hit towns was Kvam, which is situated along the Gudbrandsdalslagen River. Diggers were being used to try and alter the path of the flood water, but work had to be abandoned because the conditions became too hazardous. 250 people had to be evacuated from the town.
The saturated ground also triggered several landslides. One in Nesbyen, Buskerud County, was 20 meters wide. The flooding and landslides forced dozens of roads and two major railway lines to shut, but fortunately there have been no reported injuries.
SPACE WEATHER -
ASTEROID MOON DISCOVERED - Radar images of approaching asteroid 1998 QE2 show that it is a binary system. The 2.7 km wide primary is circled by a smaller 600 meter satellite. The preliminary estimate for the size of the asteroid's satellite is approximately 600 meters wide. The asteroid itself is approximately 2.7 kilometers in diameter and has a rotation period of less than four hours.
In the near-Earth population, about 16 percent of asteroids that are about 200 meters or larger are binary or triple systems Also revealed in the radar imagery of 1998 QE2 are several dark surface features that suggest large concavities.
The closest approach of the asteroid occurs on May 31 at 1:59 p.m. Pacific (4:59 p.m. Eastern / 20:59 UTC), when the asteroid will get no closer than about 5.8 million kilometers, or about 15 times the distance between Earth and the Moon. This is the closest approach the asteroid will make to Earth for at least the next two centuries. (satellite images)
HEALTH THREATS -
RECALLS & ALERTS
FRUIT TREASURE of CHULA VISTA, CA is recalling fresh THAI PEPPERS, because it has the potential to be contaminated with Salmonella.