**Concentration comes out of a combination of confidence and hunger.**
LARGEST QUAKES so far today -
5.0 IZU ISLANDS, JAPAN REGION
Yesterday, 6/12/14 -
5.0 BOUGAINVILLE REGION, P.N.G.
5.1 HALMAHERA, INDONESIA
TROPICAL STORMS -
Current tropical storms - maps and details.
* In the Eastern Pacific Ocean -
- Hurricane Cristina is located about 285 mi (465 km) WSW of Manzanillo, Mexico.
* In the North Arabian Sea -
- Tropical cyclone Nanauk is located approximately 251 nm east-southeast of Masirah Island.
Hurricane Cristina walled off the dry air surrounding it and put on an impressive round of rapid intensification overnight, topping out as powerful Category 4 hurricane with 150 mph winds and a central pressure estimated at 935 mb at 11 am EDT Thursday. Cristina is the second hurricane this year to reach major hurricane strength in the Eastern Pacific, SETTING A RECORD FOR THE EARLIEST DATE OF FORMATION FOR THE SEASON'S SECOND MAJOR HURRICANE.
The previous record was a full thirteen days later in the season: June 25, 2010, when Hurricane Darby reached Category 3 strength. The other major hurricane this year in the Eastern Pacific was Hurricane Amanda, which peaked as a top-end Category 4 hurricane with 155 mph winds at 15 UTC (10 am EST) May 25, becoming the STRONGEST MAY HURRICANE EVER RECORDED in the Eastern Pacific. This year is also the FIRST TIME there have been two Category 4 hurricanes before July 1 in the Eastern Pacific.
Prior to Cristina, the earliest second Category 4 hurricane was Hurricane Elida in 1984, which reached that threshold on July 1. Reliable records for the basin go back to 1966. The usual formation date for the second hurricane of the Eastern Pacific season is July 14, so we are OVER A MONTH AHEAD OF USUAL for hurricanes in 2014.
We've already had half the usual number of major hurricanes for an entire season, with the typical August 24 peak of the season nearly two and a half months away. The 1981 - 2010 averages for the Eastern Pacific hurricane season are 15 named storms, 8 hurricanes, and 4 major hurricanes.
This year is shaping up to be an El Niño year, and El Niño conditions typically increase the sea surface temperatures and decrease the vertical wind shear over the tropical Eastern Pacific, favoring the development of more and stronger tropical cyclones.
There was still time for Cristina to potentially intensify into a Category 5 storm Thursday, but increasing wind shear combined with decreasing sea surface temperatures will begin to weaken the storm on Friday and into the weekend. Cristina is headed away from Mexico, and no watches or warnings will be required.
Little change to Arabian Sea's Tropical Cyclone Nanauk - Tropical Cyclone Nanauk continues steaming westwards across the Arabian Sea at 11 mph towards Oman. Nanauk is over some of the warmest ocean waters on the planet, 31 - 32°C (88 - 90°F), but has changed little in strength over the past two days, due to high wind shear of 25 - 30 knots, which is disrupting the circulation.
Nanauk was expected to continue moving west-northwest towards Oman Thursday, but both the European and GFS models now predict that Nanauk will dissipate in the next two days. High wind shear associated with the advancing Southwest Monsoon is predicted to increase over Nanauk, allowing very dry air over the Middle East to penetrate deep into the storm's core and disrupt it.
This would be very good news for Oman, which has suffered a number of deadly and costly tropical cyclone landfalls since 2002. Tropical cyclones are quite RARE in Oman, but have hit the nation UNUSUALLY OFTEN in the past few years.
Only five have hit Oman at tropical storm strength or higher since accurate satellite data began in 1990, with three of those landfalls occurring since 2007. The most expensive natural disaster in Oman's history was Tropical Cyclone Gonu, which hit the eastern tip of Oman as a Category 1 storm on June 6, 2007.
Gonu is the first Category 4 or higher storm recorded in the Arabian Sea since the satellite era began in 1970. The Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC) estimated Gonu's peak sustained winds at 165 mph, the strongest winds of any tropical cyclone they have ever rated in the northern Indian Ocean
Pakistan - Sea water inundated Karachi coastal areas like Sandspit and Hawksbay ahead of cyclone on Thursday. Up to three feet sea water inundated Rehri Goth, Lakh Basti, Dabla Mohallah, Chashma Goth. The inflows in all hilly rivers of Upper Khyber Pakhtunkhwa, Gilgit Baltistan-Kashmir and Tarbela Dam may increase substantially during the weekend.
The met office informed that a Tropical Cyclone is developing in eastern parts of Arabian Sea that is likely to move in northwesterly direction towards Oman coast in next couple of days. Due to north-westward movement of the Tropical Cyclone, the current intense heat-wave over Pakistan is likely to further intensify and would extend toward northward including Islamabad, Khyber Pakhtunhkhwa and Upper Punjab during the weekend.
The prevailing intense pre-monsoon heat would continue for another five days in most parts of the country, according to the Pakistan Meteorological Department. The prevailing intense heat is likely to subside after pre-monsoon rain and thundershowers accompanied by dust-storms over Islamabad, Upper Punjab, Upper Khyber Pakhtunkhwa and Kashmir on Monday or Tuesday.
The heat wave would also envelop northern areas including Gilgit-Baltistan and Kashmir during the coming weekend, triggering large scale snow-melting from Friday to Monday.
SEVERE RAIN STORMS, FLOODING, LANDSLIDES -
Floods in Brazil and Paraquay - Torrential rains caused deadly flooding along the rivers in the Parana river system.
Maryland - Rain Returns: Flash Flood Watch in Effect at Noon. A series of severe storms left behind severe flooding in Maryland Wednesday, and a lightning strike may have sparked a fire at a Rockville apartment building.
SPACE WEATHER -
CHANCE OF FLARES - NOAA forecasters estimated a 60% chance of M-class flares and a 30% chance of X-flares on June 12th. The likely source is sunspot AR2087, which has already produced three major eruptions since June 10th and is turning toward Earth. Meanwhile, more X-flares are in the offing. At least two sunspots (AR2080 and AR2087) have unstable 'delta-class' magnetic fields that could erupt at any moment.
The double X-flare of June 10th may have produced a geoeffective CME after all. At first it appeared that Earth was outside the line of fire, but a closer look at the CME reveals an Earth-directed component. Computer models run by NOAA analysts suggest the merged storm cloud will reach Earth mid-day on Friday the 13th. The glancing blow could spark polar geomagnetic storms.
HEALTH THREATS -
RECALLS & ALERTS
Beef recall: Concern over mad cow disease cited - More than 4,000 pounds of rib-eye and other fresh beef products have been recalled because they could contain contaminated materials linked to mad cow disease.
The products were produced between September 2013 and April 2014 and were distributed to a restaurant in New York City, another in Kansas City, Missouri, and a Whole Foods distribution center in Connecticut, which serves stores in the New England area.
The dorsal root ganglia within the nervous system has to be removed from cattle that are 30 months and older but may have been present in some of the products. There have been no reports of adverse reactions to eating the products, and the recall was characterized as a Class II recall, meaning there’s a ‘‘remote probability’’ of health problems associated with using the recalled product.
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