Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.4 Earthquake hits near the east coast of Honshu, japan.

5.2 Earthquake hits northern Sumatra, Indonesia.

5.1 Earthquake hits south of Bali, Indonesia.

5.0 Earthquake hits the Sea of Othotsk, Russia.

5.0 Earthquake hits Tonga.

5.0 Earthquake hits near the east coast of Honshu, japan.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Gl sst mm

Tropical Storm Guillermo is located about 190 mi…305 km NE of Hilo Hawaii and about 305 mi…490 km E of Honolulu Hawaii with maximum sustained winds…50 mph…85 km/h. Present movement…WNW or 285 degrees at 10 mph…17 km/h.

Typhoon 13w (Soudelor), located approximately 345 nm south-southeast of Kadena AB, is tracking west-northwestward at 11 knots.

Around 2,600 people, including tourists and residents, have been evacuated from Green Island and Orchid Island off the coast of the eastern county of Taitung, Taiwan. Ferry services to the outlying islands were suspended Thursday as Soudelor approaches.

Tropical Depression Ten-E is located about 1550 mi…2490 km WSW of the southern tip of Baja California with maximum sustained winds…35 mph…55 km/h. Present movement…W or 270 degrees at 12 mph…19 km/h

NewsBytes:

India – Two express trains derailed into a river in central India overnight after flood water weakened the tracks, killing 21 people. Divers using gas cutters pulled out trapped passengers and 300 had been rescued by early morning, officials said. Dozens were rushed to hospital. Twelve coaches of the Kamayani Express to Varanasi from Mumbai derailed near Harda in the central state of Madhya Pradesh just before midnight. Six coaches of the Janata Express derailed around the same time, the railway ministry said. Heavy monsoon rains and the tail-end of a cyclone have killed more than 100 people across India in flooding, landslides and building collapses in recent days.

Philippines – Flash floods caused by heavy rain have killed at least seven people, including four children, in the southern Philippines.

Environment

Algae Bloom on US West Coast

A vast bloom of toxic algae off the US West Coast is denser, more widespread and deeper than scientists feared even weeks ago, according to surveyors aboard a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration research vessel.

This coastal ribbon of microscopic algae, up to 40 miles wide and 650 feet deep in places, is flourishing amid unusually warm Pacific Ocean temperatures. It now stretches from at least California to Alaska and has shut down lucrative fisheries. Shellfish managers on Tuesday doubled the area off Washington’s coast that is closed to Dungeness crab fishing, after finding elevated levels of marine toxins in tested crab meat.

So-called “red tides” are cyclical and have happened many times before, but ocean researchers say this one is much larger and persisting much longer, with higher levels of neurotoxins bringing severe consequences for the Pacific seafood industry, coastal tourism and marine ecosystems.

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Wildfires

Wildfires – California

Thousands of firefighters have been dispatched to battle dozens of wildfires all over the parched West, and one blaze was responsible for shutting down a portion of an interstate Wednesday evening.

I-84 in eastern Oregon was closed at Exit 216 as the Lime Hill fire grew near the town of Huntington, KTVB.com reported. The city also put its residents on notice that evacuations may be necessary, the report added.

The wildfire has burned more than 7,000 acres of land, and the road closure affects a stretch between Ontario and Pendleton, Oregon, according to the Oregonian.

Many other large wildfires are currently burning across the region, and a rundown of several notable infernos can be seen below.

Firefighters are gaining ground in the battle against the largest wildfire currently burning in California, fire officials say. The so-called Rocky fire has reached nearly 70,000 acres and is 30-percent contained.

On Wednesday, the blaze grew more than 2,500 acres. It has burned land in northern California’s Lake, Yolo and Colusa counties.

CalFire reports that 43 residences and 53 outbuildings have been destroyed, but warns those numbers may rise as damage assessment teams are able to access the previously burned areas.

According to CNN, more than 13,000 Californians were told to evacuate as the inferno continued to grow.

Light rain fell over the Lower Lake Wildfire in California Tuesday, but crews weren’t hopeful it would do much to quell the raging fire.

Across the state, an estimated 9,000 firefighters are battling 21 massive fires, several of which were ignited by lightning strikes, raging across Northern California, said Daniel Berlant, state Department of Forestry and Fire protection spokesman. According to CNN, those fires have burned more than 134,000 acres.

The state is in the midst of a historic drought, making conditions more difficult for those fighting from air and on the ground.

“The conditions and fire behavior we’re seeing at 10 in the morning is typically what we’d see in late-afternoon in late-August and September,” state Department of Forestry and Fire Protection division chief Nick Schuler described. “But because of the dry conditions, because of the drought-stricken vegetation accompanied by the steep terrain and winds, we’re seeing activity that’s abnormal for this time of year.”

Officials rescinded mandatory evacuation orders for the town of Roosevelt in southern Washington on Wednesday morning, after a fast-moving wildfire forced residents to flee Tuesday evening, KATU.com reported. A nearly a 65-mile stretch of Highway 14 remained closed Wednesday, however.

NBC News reported about 300 residents were told to leave after the blaze jumped State Route 14 and moved toward the town. Roosevelt is a small town on the Columbia River, sitting on the state line with Oregon.

No injuries have been reported from this fire, and so far, only outbuildings have been burned. NBC News also said a Red Cross evacuation shelter has been opened at a school some 30 miles north of the town.

This season, wildfires have been relentless all over the parched West. In California, fires prompted Gov. Jerry Brown to declare a state of emergency for the entire state and activate the California National Guard to help with disaster recovery.

Engine Capt. David Ruhl, from South Dakota, was killed battling a fast-moving blaze that broke out Thursday in the Modoc National Forest, about 100 miles south of Oregon.

The so-called Frog fire has grown to about 4,700 acres as of Wednesday morning, and it was 50-percent contained.

Foothills Fires

Cooler and cloudier weather helped firefighters make progress Monday on two wildfires in the foothills of the Cascades of southwestern Oregon. Smoke continued to choke communities to the south in the Rogue Valley.

The Stouts fire was 10-percent contained after burning through nearly 27 square miles of private and federal timber 16 miles east of Canyonville, the Oregon Department of Forestry said. It started nearly a week ago and the cause remains under investigation. No homes have burned, but more than 300 were threatened. Residents have been warned to be ready to evacuate.

The Oregon Department of Environmental Quality reports smoke levels are unhealthy in Medford and Grants Pass, and hazardous in Shady Cove.

Meanwhile, the nearby Cable Crossing fire is 40-percent contained after burning through 1,800 acres of timber and grass 6 miles east of Glide, also in Douglas County. Firefighters have built trail all the way around it. The cause remains under investigation. There are more than 1,100 firefighters assigned to the wildfire, along with three single-engine air tankers and 15 helicopters. The cost to date is $2.5 million.

Bass Lake Blaze

A wildfire that caused the evacuation of 200 homes in the central California community of Cascadel Woods is 70-percent contained.

Authorities say a boy acknowledged starting the fire near Bass Lake by playing with a lighter to burn pine needles. The fire, which has been burning for several days, has grown to nearly 8 square miles.

Disease

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) – Saudi Arabia

Between 28 and 29 July 2015, the National IHR Focal Point for the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia notified WHO of 2 additional cases of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) infection.

Legionnaires Disease Outbreak – New York

Eight people in New York City have died and 86 have been infected in an outbreak of Legionnaires’ disease. The illness can cause high fevers and pneumonia.

But despite the current outbreak, most people in the region aren’t at any increased risk of getting Legionnaires’. The disease is not communicable between people, and only those with weakened immune systems or other health impairments tend to fall ill. In addition, most people who do get Legionnaires’ can be treated with antibiotics.