Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.7 Earthquake hits the Owen Fracture Zone region.

5.4 Earthquake hits near the coast of Papua, Indonesia.

5.2 Earthquake hits the Galapagos Islands off Ecuador.

5.2 Earthquake hits Reykjanes Ridge.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

In the Atlantic:

Tropical storm Jerry is located about 1300 mi (2095 km) E of Bermuda.

Jerry is the tenth named storm of the 2013 Atlantic hurricane season, and arrived twenty days before the usual appearance of the season’s tenth named storm, which is October 19. Jerry is not a threat to any land areas.

Tropical disturbance – Landfall in Florida or Louisiana likely on Friday. In the Caribbean, a tropical disturbance (Invest 97L) A tropical disturbance (Invest 97L) over the Western Caribbean is generating heavy rains over Jamaica and the Cayman Islands. Kingston, Jamaica picked up 2.60″ of rain on Monday. By tonight, 97L will cross the northeastern tip of Mexico’s Yucatan Peninsula, bringing 4 – 8″ of rain to the peninsula and to Western Cuba.

Passage over the Yucatan will act to disrupt the storm. The atmosphere will grow drier and wind shear will increase as 97L moves northwards over the Gulf of Mexico on Thursday and Friday, and these combined effects will likely retard development. The GFS model predicts landfall will occur along the Florida Panhandle, while the European model is farther west, taking the storm over Eastern Louisiana. Neither model shows 97L developing tropical storm-force winds.

In the Western Pacific:

Tropical depression Sepat is located about 178 nm south-southeast of Yokosuka, Japan.

Tropical storm Fitow is located approximately 430 nm north-northwest of Koror, Palau.

Tropical storm Wutip lashed central Vietnam on Monday after sinking at least two Chinese fishing boats near the Paracel Islands, leaving 75 fishermen missing. The storm uprooted trees, cut power lines and damaged more than 1,000 houses.

Wutip had weakened from a typhoon to a tropical storm by the time it made landfall. It was packing sustained winds of 117 kilometers (73 miles) per hour. Officials evacuated tens of thousands of people from the storm’s path over the previous day. By nightfall, Wutip had blown the roofs off of more than 1,000 houses in one district alone. TV footage showed uprooted trees and deserted city streets in central towns close to the storm’s centre.

Wutip was the strongest typhoon to gather off Vietnam this season. The most powerful Asian storm this year was Typhoon Usagi, which caused at least 33 deaths in the Philippines and China earlier in September. Vietnam is prone to floods and storms which kill hundreds of people and cause millions of dollars in damage each year.


Drought Conditions in Queensland, Australia

Drought-hit Queensland swelters through the hottest 12 months on record.

Queensland has recorded its hottest year since records began more than 100 years ago. Springtime temperatures have topped 40 degrees in some areas. Records have been kept since 1910.

“The state as a whole has been over four degrees above average for the whole month of September. That beats the previous record by almost two degrees. Around about 35 locations broke their mean, monthly maximum temperature record.” Much of Queensland is drought-declared following an extended period of dry weather over the west of the state. The weather bureau expects above average temperatures to continue into summer.


Chikungunya outbreak in Mariveles in the Philippines

Health officials have joined forces in search and destroy operations to curb the Chikungunya outbreak in Mariveles, which affected over a hundred people.

Based on the latest local report, 144 people were afflicted with the disease from July 29 to September 30.


Roundup of Global Volcanic Activity:

Jebel Zubair volcano (Red Sea, Yemen) activity update

As of yesterday morning when the latest MODIS satellite image was taken from the area, the eruption continued with little changes.

Lewotobi volcano (Flores, Indonesia): increased seismic activity, alert level raised

Following an increase in seismic activity recorded since 28 September, VSI raised the alert level to 2 (“Waspada”,”watch”) on a scale of 1-4. No changes in surface activity, degassing from fumarole vents, has been noted.

Tjörnes Fracture Zone (North of Iceland): An intense earthquake swarm has been going on offshore North Iceland, 10 km NW of Gjögurtá, since 25 September. This morning, 2 earthquakes reaching magnitude 3 and 3.2 occurred at 06:14 and 07:41. In total, more than 1000 quakes have been recorded by IMO.

The depths of the quakes vary from about 15 km depth (crust-mantle boundary) to near surface. The area is located on an active fault line related to rifting, and a possible cause of the earthquake swarm could be a magmatic intrusion.