Sunday, April 27, 2014

Global Disaster Watch - daily natural disaster reports.

**Once you replace negative thoughts with positive ones,
you'll start having positive results.**
Willie Nelson

LARGEST QUAKES so far today -

Yesterday, 4/26/14 -

4/25/14 -

Current tropical storms - maps and details.

* In the Western Pacific Ocean -
- Tropical depression Six is located approximately 144 nm southeast of Andersen Air Force Base.
New Zealand - Cyclone Ita devastated West Coast forests. The totara forests on New Zealand's west coast appear to have taken the biggest hit from Cyclone Ita, with several parts of forests completely flattened. The full scale of the destruction Ita wrought upon the West Coast's native bush and tree population may not be known for weeks.

Cyclone Nargis - Next week will mark the sixth anniversary of Cyclone Nargis, which swept through the Irrawaddy Delta in Burma and killed at least 140,000 people.


Mobile homes and tornadoes - It's well-known that one should avoid mobile homes during a tornado, as their relatively flimsy construction and tendency to roll when exposed to high winds leads to numerous deaths each tornado season. The majority of tornado deaths occur in mobile homes for this reason, but tornado experts have long wondered why mobile home parks seem to get disproportionately more tornado strikes than other residential areas.
New research suggests that "transitions zones" -- areas where dramatically different landscapes meet, like where a city fades into farmland, or a forest meets a plain -- are more prone to tornado touch downs. Since mobile home parks are often located at the edge of built-up areas, they may actually get hit more often.
The researchers studied where tornadoes touched down in Indiana between 1950 and 2012, and found that 61% of tornado touchdowns occurred within 1 kilometer (about 0.62 mile) of urban areas, and 43% fell within 1 kilometer of forest. The percentages suggest that certain locations may increase the likelihood of tornado touchdowns due to increased "surface roughness" -- an abrupt change in the height of land surface features, which can stretch or squash a column of air, increasing its rate of spin, which could contribute to the formation of tornadoes.
Forecasters and city planners may need to pay closer attention to these "transition zones" to better understand tornado risk. "There are still many unanswered questions about tornado climatology, but what we're finding is that there may be a relationship between the Earth's surface and the atmosphere that contributes to where tornadoes tend to touch down."
The study also found that tornado touchdowns in urban areas tend to occur at about 1 and 10 miles from the city center. These "rings" of increased tornado activity could be related to how cities are developed. "Cities impact the surrounding climate in terms of regional airflow and temperature. The size of cities, what they're made of and the heat they produce are factors that could affect the microclimate."

Weekend tornado and severe weather outbreak coming for the Plains - A multi-day severe weather event was expected Saturday, Sunday, and Monday across the Central U.S., as a strong low pressure system will spawn supercell thunderstorms capable of generating large hail, damaging winds, and a few strong tornadoes. The most dangerous day appears to be Sunday, and NOAA's Storm Prediction Center has issued their "Moderate Risk" forecast of severe weather over portions of Arkansas , Oklahoma, Texas, and Louisiana.
The action began Saturday afternoon along a swath from Central Texas northwards into Oklahoma and Kansas, but at only a "Slight Risk" classification. This weekend's severe weather outbreak has the potential to be the most dangerous one of this relatively quiet 2014, which has yet to spawn a killer tornado. The relatively cool and dry weather across Tornado Alley so far this year has led to no EF-3 or stronger tornadoes as of April 24, which is a record-long wait since modern tornado records began in 1950.

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