Global Warming

Global warming causing an increase in avalanches in Western Himalayas

A team of researchers from across Europe has found that rising temperatures due to global warming have been causing more avalanches in the Western Himalayas than in the past.

In looking at their data, the team was able to see that the number of avalanches occurring each year in the area has been increasing since the 1970s. Prior to that time, they found that snow avalanches were relatively rare—during the ’40s and early ’50s, for example, there were none. But after 1970, the rate increased to approximately 0.87 per year. A big increase over the 0.24 rate for the entire period of study. They also noticed that impacted areas tended to be larger after 1970.

The risk of a snow avalanches goes up, the researchers note, as temperatures rise causing an increase in liquid water in the snowpack which in turn increases the shear deformation rate, causing stress, which is released when the snowpack collapses in an avalanche.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

No current tropical storms.

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Italy – An avalanche has buried a mountainside hotel in central Italy, and civil protection officials said on Thursday that up to 30 people were missing, citing local officials. The avalanche came after four earthquakes struck the region on Wednesday, prompting officials to close schools and the subway system in Rome, about 100 miles to the southwest, as a precaution.

Philippines – Forest loss blamed for Mindanao floods. Continued tree-cutting in the hinterlands of Northern Mindanao region has led to the massive flooding that submerged Cagayan de Oro City and nearby areas on Monday. When flash floods hit a certain area, there’s only one reason for that. It means there are no trees in the mountains to hold the rainwater. Deforestation and the unabated cutting of trees in the mountains of Lanao del Norte, Misamis Occidental and Misamis Oriental [provinces] are seen as the possible cause of these flash floods.

Nature – Images

Interesting Images

Before and After Space Pics Reveal Massive Ice Avalanche

One of the world’s largest, and most mysterious ice avalanches was recently visualized in stunning pictures from space.

A huge sliver of ice split off from a vast glacier in the Aru Mountains of Tibet, falling nearly 0.6 miles (1 kilometre) before tumbling through a narrow gully and plunging into a nearby lake.

When the ice and rock settled, the avalanche debris spanned 4 square miles (10 square km) and was 98 feet (30 m) thick. The massive avalanche killed nine people, 350 sheep and 110 yaks that lived in the village of Dungru.

Ice fall before

Ice fall after

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Tropical Cyclone Victor is located approximately 360 nm east of Tonga, and is tracking west-southwestward at 04 knots.

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Odessa, Ukraine – A heavy snowstorm in Ukraine’s port city of Odessa has claimed the lives of two people who were sleeping on the streets. Severe weather conditions have caused cancellations of flights and closed the port.

France – An avalanche in Savoie, eastern France has claimed the lives of five soldiers on Monday afternoon. Eleven soldiers were caught up in the avalanche. Six soldiers were saved by rescuers. The soldiers were skiing in the Petit Argentier area at a height of 2,200m when they were caught up in the avalanche shortly before 13:00 GMT.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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Hurricane Pali is located about 1640 mi…2635 km SW of Honolulu Hawaii and about 1015 mi…1635 km SSW of Johnston Island with maximum sustained winds…45 mph…75 km/h. Present movement…SSW or 205 degrees at 7 mph…11 km/h.

Subtropical Storm Alex is located about 560 mi…905 km SSW of the Azores with maximum sustained winds…70 mph…110 km/h. Present movement…NNE or 20 degrees at 18 mph…30 km/h.

Alex is just the fourth Atlantic named storm to form in January since record keeping began in 1851.

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France – The avalanche on Wednesday claimed the lives of two teenage pupils and a Ukrainian man in the French Alps. 17 other school children were saved after a mammoth rescue effort.

Australia – A severe storm in Sydney has claimed the life of at least one person and injured another on Thursday afternoon. The fierce winds, rain and hail struck Sydney causing delays and diversions at Sydney Airport.

Mozambique – Flooding triggered by heavy rainfall has claimed the lives of at least three people in Pemba in the northern province of Cabo Delgado, Mozambique. In Natite, several buildings are underwater due to flash floods.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

No current tropical storms.

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Montana, USA – An avalanche in southern Montana has claimed life of a snowmobiler. Two of the snowmobilers from North Dakota managed to dig themselves from the slide north of Cooke City on the Montana-Wyoming line. According to the Gallatin National Forest Avalanche Centre (GNFAC), the avalanche occurred on the SE face of Sheep Mountain between Lulu Pass and Round Lake.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

Hurricane Vance is located about 70 mi…115 km ESE of Socorro island and about 405 mi…650 km SW of Mazatlan Mexico with maximum sustained winds…105 mph…165 km/h. Present movement…NNE or 25 degrees at 13 mph…20 km/h.

Hazards affecting land – rainfall…Vance and moisture spreading northward ahead of the system are expected to produce rainfall totals of 4 to 8 inches with isolated amounts near 12 inches through Wednesday over the states of Sinaloa…Nayarit….and Durango in western Mexico. These rains are likely to produce life-threatening flash floods and mud slides…especially in areas of mountainous terrain. Surf…swells generated by Vance will be affecting portions of the coast of southwestern Mexico and Baja California Sur today and tonight.

Typhoon 20w (Nuri), located approximately 358 nm west-southwest of Iwo To, and is tracking north-northeastward at 09 knots.

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Nepal – An avalanche on Mount Ama Dablam in Khumjung-7 of Solukhumbu distirct in Nepal has claimed the life of a Nepali Sherpa and injured three foreigners. Three foreign mountaineers—one Swiss, one Russian and one Briton—got injured in the incident above the Base 2 on the 6,812-metre mountain.

Peru – Heavy rains have resulted in floods across central Peru on Sunday. The flood water has damaged local schools and more than 100 homes. Mudslides have also cut off highways in the largely rural area. In the city of Huanuco, which has a population of 75,000, students were forced onto chairs in flooded classrooms and parents carried children on their backs after classes were suspended following the rain.

Israel – Major flooding hit several Merkaz (Central) region towns on Monday, after an unusual deluge of rainfall buckled some roads and swallowed cars on others.

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Argentina – 19 districts of Buenos Aires province have been affected by flooding caused by record levels of rainfall, with a total of 5,203 people evacuated across the region.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

In the Eastern Pacific:

Tropical Storm Amanda forms 630 miles southwest of Manzanillo, Mexico and is expected to strengthen to hurricane force later today. Amanda is moving west-northwest at 5 mph.

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China – Landslide in south China’s Guangdong Province has claimed the lives of at least six people. Heavy rainfall caused the landslide around 5 p.m. in Longshi Village.

Nepal – An avalanche on Mount Kanchenjunga in Nepal has claimed the lives of three people including one from India. According to the Nepalese officials, the three were swept away by the avalanche and were believed to be dead. They scaled Kanchenjunga on Sunday and were attempting to climb Yalung Kang, a sister peak.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

In the Eastern Indian Ocean:

Tropical cyclone (tc) 17p (Gillian), located approximately 834 nm north-northwest of Learmonth, Australia, and is tracking westward at 16 knots.

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Afghanistan – Avalanche in Bamyan province of Afghanistan has claimed lives of at least five people.

India – Cyclonic storm in Meghalaya, India has claimed the lives of at least four people and injured 27 others.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

No current tropical storms.

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Canada – An avalanche in Kootenay Pass area in Canada has claimed the life of one person and seriously injured a woman.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

No Current Tropical Storms

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An avalanche in Indian-controlled Kashmir has claimed the life of a Swiss skier and injured two others. Avalanche occurred in the Gulmarg region located 52 kilometres northwest of Srinagar after an avalanche warning was issued after heavy snowfall on Wednesday.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

Pacific Ocean:

Severe tropical cyclone Ian, a category four storm was located 170 km South-SouthWest of Niuafo’Ou and 295 km NorthWest of Vava’U at 1:00 AM Friday morning.

Following the current track, Tropical cyclone Ian is predicted to bring destructive storm force winds to the Vava’U group in the next 12-18 hours followed by a very destructive hurricane force winds in the next 18-24 hours.

Tropical cyclone Ian updates issued at 4:30 Am Friday morning (January 10, 2014) has kept Ha’apai and Niuafo’ou under gale warning. A storm alert remains in force for the Ha’apai group. Similarly, a tropical cyclone alert remains in force for Tongatapu and ‘Eua. A hurricane warning has also been issued for the Vava’u group in Tonga.

NewsBytes:

An avalanche in Kashmir, India has claimed the life of an army jawan and left other missing.

Lightning strike in Argentina has claimed the lives of at least three people and injured 22 others. The lightning bolt hit Villa Gesell, Argentina on Thursday afternoon and injured 16 adults and six children. Villa Gesell is a seaside village in Villa Gesell Partido on the Atlantic coast located around 400 kilometres from Buenos Aires.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

Pacific Ocean:

Tropical cyclone 07p (Ian), forms in the Pacific and is ocated approximately 275 nm east-northeast of Suva, Fiji, tracking northward at 02 knots.

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NewsBytes:

An avalanche in the backcountry near Vail. Colorado, USA has claimed the life of one person. The avalanche occurred at around 11:30 am in East Vail Chutes, an area between Vail Mountain and Vail Pass.

Several parts of central Oxford in the UK have flooded in storms described as “the worst in two decades”.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms

Indian Ocean:

Tropical Cyclone Christine has been downgraded to a category one system as it continues to sweep inland through Western Australia leaving behind largely superficial damage to trees, fences and roofs.

Tropical storm Bejisa is forecast to hit Mauritius on January 3, 2013, the US Navy and Air Force Joint Typhoon Warning Centre said. A cyclone warning Class 1 has been issued in Mauritius for Bejisa.

Winter Weather – USA

Winter Storm Hercules is expected to dump six to ten inches of snow in New York City beginning Wednesday night. Heaviest snowstorm is likely across southern New England on Thursday and early Friday. The entire New York City area will be kept under a winter storm watch for Thursday and Friday by the weather service.

NewsBytes:

Floods in Zimbabwe have claimed lives of three children aged 9, 10 and 14 years.

An avalanche east of Steamboat Springs caught three snowmobilers and has claimed the life of one.

Storms and Floods

NewsBytes:

Avalanche in Bulgaria’s Rila Mountain has claimed life of a 54-year-old military pilot. The Mountain Rescue Service found the body of the man covered with snow.