The Watchers News Brief: August 9, 2018


Glacial outburst flood from Vatnajökull largest on record, Iceland

A glacial outburst flood began at Vatnajökull on August 3 and quickly became the largest on record. The flood peaked on August 4 at 1 400 m3/s and the flow restored to normal on August 9, according to Icelandic Met Office.

The flood delivered 500 gigaliters (500 billion liters/132 billion gallons) of water to the ocean, IMO said.

The second largest Skaftárhlaup outburst flood was in 2015, with 425 gigaliters. 

New emission of hot Carbonatite at Ol Doinyo Lengai volcano, Tanzania

A new emission of hot Carbonatite began at Ol Doinyo Lengao volcano in Tanzania a few days ago, Culture Volcan reports.

The last known eruption of this volcano took place in 2014.

Ol Doinyo Lengai is the only volcano known to have erupted carbonatite tephras and lavas in historical time.

Heavy storms and flooding hits central Germany

Huge storms hit central Germany on August 7, flooding streets and leaving cars stranded. The storm also downed trees and ripped off roofs of houses.

While nobody has yet been injured, the scale of the downpour has wreaked havoc in places like Kirchhain, near Marburg, where authorities deployed 200 firefighters to help people whose houses were flooded. The town was hit by an estimated 150 mm (5.9 inches) in just three hours.

Major flash flooding in Turkey's Ordu Province

Major flash floods were reported in Ordu Province, northern Turkey on August 8. The worst affected were Fatsa and Ünye districts. The heavy rain caused the Cevizdere river to break its banks.

The flooding caused severe damage to bridges and roads in the area, leaving several areas cut off and hundreds of people isolated. Local media reported that over 300 buildings have been damaged.

The aftermath of the debris flow in Chamoson, Switzerland 

A torrent of rock and mud erupted onto the streets of the small Swiss village of Chamoson on August 7 after record-breaking rains hit the area. The incident was triggered by an intense thunderstorm which caused a riverbed to expand and burst. 10 minutes maximum precipitation was 18 mm (0.70 inches) and 1 h was about 50 mm (1.96 inches), a few kilometers east of Chamoson.

Heavy flooding leaves 22 dead, destroy more than 3 000 homes and nearly 4 000 ha of crops, Niger

At least 22 people have died and thousands have been left homeless after torrential rains caused heavy flooding earlier this week.

As of August 6, 49 845 people have been affected, Niger's minister for humanitarian action, Laouan Magadji, said.

The floods have destroyed more than 3 000 homes and nearly 4 000 hectares (10 000 acres) of crops, Magadji said.

Livestock has also been lost and drinking water supplies have been affected.

Drone vs lava-bombs at Krakatau volcano, Indonesia

6 minutes of erupting Krakatau volcano:

Flood death toll in Assam reaches 76, 90 000 still affected, over 20 000 ha of crops under water, India

According to Assam State Disaster Management Authority (ASDMA), the total number of people losing their lives in this year's flood-related cases in Assam reached 76 this week. 

The ASDMA said around 90 000 people are still affected in Lakhimpur, Biswanath, Barpeta, Morigaon, Nagaon, Karbi Anglong, Golaghat, Jorhat, Sivasagar, Karimganj and Cachar districts.

294 villages are under water at present and over 20 000 ha (49 421 acres) of crops are under water. The worst affected is Golaghat, where over 31 000 people have been affected by flooding, followed by Barpeta with more than 17 000 people.

20 people killed in Kerala after heavy rain triggers floods and landslides, India

At least 20 people have died in the state of Kerala in south west India after torrential rain triggered floods and landslides on August 8.

Chief Minister of Kerala, Pinarayi Vijayan, said earlier today that heavy rains are causing destruction in many parts of the state. "Debris flows and soil erosions have occurred in Wayanad, Idukki and Malappuram districts," he said.

Tropical Storm "Yagi" moving toward Ryukyu Islands, Japan

Tropical Storm "Yagi" formed August 8 as the 14th named storm of the 2018 Pacific typhoon season. It's currently moving northward over the northern Philippine Sea.

Heavy rain and strong winds may affect Ryukyu Islands (southern Japan) from August 11.

Major floods, 10 injured as storm rolls through southern France

Torrential rain caused flash flooding in the Gard department on August 9. According to officials, 184 people were evacuated from several camping sites and a summer camp near the towns of Saint-Julien-de-Peyrolasand Saint-Ambroix.

The flooding left at least 10 people injured, Garda reports.

Hurricane Maria (2017) killed 1 427 people, Puerto Rican government admits

The Puerto Rican government has admitted for the first time that Hurricane "Maria" killed at least 1 427 people on the island. Previously, the government's official death toll was 64. Some studies say the number of deaths is as high as 4 500.

This makes Maria the second deadliest hurricane to strike Puerto Rico since records began in the mid-19th century. The only deadlier hurricane to strike the island is San Ciriaco of August 1899, with 3 369 deaths.

Massive landslide hits Kand village in Himachal Pradesh, India

A massive landslide hit Kand village in India's Himachal Pradesh on August 8, damaging 8 homes and washing away road.

One of the residens said top crust of the hill in their area had slid down, adding that their houses had developed big cracks.

About 2 ha (5 acres) of fertile land has been affected by it.

134 000 Polish farms hit by long-lasting drought

At least 134 600 farms in Poland are suffering from long-lasting drought, the Polish Agriculture Ministry said August 9. This year's heat wave has affected some 2.2 million ha (5 436 000 acres) of crops, causing an estimated damage of 1.2 billion PLN (323 600 million U.S. dollars).

The worst affected is Wielkopolskie province in western Poland, followed bt Warminsko-Mazurskie, Zachodniopomorskie and Podlaskie provinces.

M6.2 aftershock hits Lombok, Indonesia

A strong aftershock registered by BMKG as M6.2 hit Lombok, Indonesia at 05:25 UTC (12:25 WIB) on August 9, 2018. The agency is reporting a depth of 12 km (7.4 miles). USGS registered it as M5.9 at a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles).

This quake hit just 4 days after devastating M7.0 (BMKG) hit the same area. As of August 9, the death toll has reached 259. The number is still expected to grow. Some sources mention more than 340 deaths.

Featured image credit: Meteopuls. Edit: The Watchers


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