**Imagination is everything.
It is the preview of life's coming attractions.**
LARGEST QUAKES so far today -
5.2 OFF COAST OF OREGON
Yesterday, 3/11/14 -
6.1 BISMARCK SEA [near Papua New Guinea]
6.4 EAST OF SOUTH SANDWICH ISLANDS
Indonesia - Slamet volcano (West Java): new eruptions, alert level raised. New eruptions were observed at Java's second highest volcano since Monday evening. A series of explosions produced ash plumes rising 800-1000 m above the summit. This activity came after a steep increase in volcanic earthquakes from averages of approx 50 to more than 200 per day.
The first explosion occurred Monday evening at 20:06, causing the glass windows of the observatory building to vibrate. Shortly after, the Center for Volcanology and Geological Hazard Mitigation raised the status of Mount Slamet from normal to alert (2 on a scale of 1-4). The vibration from the eruption could be felt in up to 10 km distance and described the plume as "thick smoke". Slamet is one of Java's most active volcanoes and often has strombolian to vulcanian-type activity in its summit crater.
TROPICAL STORMS -
Current tropical storms - maps and details.
No current tropical storms listed. [Yet Tropical cyclone Lusi is still causing trouble.].
New Zealand - Crops damaged in Vanuatu cyclone. Tropical cyclone Lusi was damaging crops and felling trees as it passed over Vanuatu, and has killed at least one person.
The person died in Adaptabanga Village in north Pentecost in Penama province, reportedly after being hit by a falling tree. Lusi isn't very strong at the moment but it's still doing damage. "A lot of damage has been reported done especially to peoples gardens. Crops, trees falling down, banana bunches going down."
Lusi has now been upgraded to a category 2 storm as it heads east south east towards Fiji where a cyclone warning has now been issued. The cyclone now has winds near its centre of up to 130 kilometres an hour. By Wednesday afternoon the Fiji Weather Office said Lusi could be upgraded to Category 3.
A tropical cyclone gale warning is in force for Fiji's Yasawas, the Mamanuca group and parts of the western division as Lusi moves south-east away from Vanuatu. A damaging heavy swell warning is in place for the same areas while there is a strong wind warning for the rest of Fiji.
Tropical Cyclone Lusi is just over 600 kilometres west of Nadi, with sustained winds of 110 kilometres per hour, and gusts of up to 160 at its centre. The category two storm is likely to be upgraded to category 3 later today. It should be about 460 kilometres west of Nadi by tomorrow morning. Overnight Lusi damaged roads, crops, and houses as it passed over northeastern Vanuatu. The Fiji Meteorological Office is warning of thunderstorms and flooding in coastal areas tomorrow.
Severe weekend weather from Tropical Cyclone Lusi could cause more trouble for Christchurch residents struggling with last week's storm clean-up, weather forecasters say. Heavy rain and strong winds are expected to hit the top of the North Island late Friday - with a severe weather watch from MetService already in place for Northland, Auckland and Coromandel for Friday evening and Saturday.
The ex-cyclone will then head south and likely reach eastern parts of the South Island, including Christchurch, on Saturday night. Civil Defence officials and the Coastguard have already issued warnings for the rough weather, with people being reminded about an emergency survival kit and household emergency plan for adverse weather events. The Coastguard also advised boaties to seek a temporary berth for vessels in a marina this weekend.
The worst of the weather looked to be hitting the North Island, however Christchurch could not be ruled out. "If you're in some of those northern and eastern areas, start to plan and maybe batten down the hatches." The worst of the weather from Cyclone Lusi was likely to hit Northland on Saturday, track to the west of the North Island then head back across central New Zealand, exiting east of the South Island later on Sunday and Monday. "Many, many places will be under the gun - severe weather, gales - as the whole system just spreads down across the country through the day on Saturday and Sunday.''
Sodden-Christchurch residents needed to be extra wary of the storm conditions. "The ground is already very saturated. It doesn't take as much rain to cause problems there as ... if the ground was parched bone dry. They'll get into a time of persistent rain over eastern parts of the South Island. We've already had discussions with the council because of all the flooding in the last week or so.''
Most parts of the country would either have a severe weather watch or warning by Sunday. WeatherWatch also said Northland, Auckland and the Coromandel Peninsula were likely to bear the brunt of the severe weekend weather, with areas around Taranaki and Wanganui also at risk. As the rain and winds moved further south, they were likely to weaken - however strong winds and heavy rain was still possible for Wellington and Canterbury on Sunday.
Tropical storm expected in Thailand over two days - The National Disaster Warning Center has issued a statement saying that a tropical storm was due to hit parts of the Northeast and the East hard on Tuesday and Wednesday.
The Meteorological Department has reported that a high pressure cell from China continues to prevail over the South China Sea and Thailand’s Northeast. Heavy rains can be expected in most parts of the country during the next two days. In the North and Notheast, temperatures are rising, with the mercury rising to 38 degree Celsius in some parts. Isolated rainshowers are also expected in the regions.
In the South, strong winds are expected to generate up to 2-meter high waves and all ships should proceed with caution. Parts of Bangkok and its vicinity were to be lashed with rain later on Tuesday.
HEAVY SNOW / EXTREME COLD -
U. S. - Snowstorm Ramps Up Over Midwest, Halts Travel. A snowstorm has started to take shape over the Midwest with its sights set on the Northeast. Snow began falling on Tuesday night from Missouri to Michigan with snow reported in downtown Kansas City within 7 hours of the city hitting 80 degrees.
This storm is expected to track north and east throughout Wednesday with snow reaching Maine and Nova Scotia by the end of the day. Eventually, this storm will unleash a blizzard across portions of New England with gusty winds blowing snow and reducing visibilities for several hours, bringing travel to a standstill. Not only will this storm deliver heavy snow to parts of the Northeast, but also the risk of severe thunderstorms from New Jersey to North Carolina. Travel will be treacherous around cities such as Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington, D.C., with these gusty thunderstorms forecast to move through around the same time as the evening rush hour.
Global Disaster Watch is on Facebook - with breaking news during the day.