The Watchers News Brief: August 18 and 19, 2018


Brutal cold snap, Mt. Buller received 30 cm (11.8 inches) of snow overnight, the most in 14 years, Australia 

Parts of the Australian state of Victoria have woken up to snow on August 19 after shivering through a brutal cold snap.

Mt. Buller received 30 cm (11.8 inches) of snow overnight, the most the resort has seen in more than 14 years.

Rhylla Morgan, the resort's communications consultant, said the blankets of snow seen were unprecedented, even for the resort. 

EF-1 tornado hit the central Mississippi city of Madison

An EF-1 tornado swept through Madison on August 17, snapping trees and damaging multiple structures.

A 156 km/h (97 mph) wind gust was recorded as the tornado crossed Bruce Campbell Field and about a dozen homes in the Sandalwood Subdivision had structural damage, AP reports.

Wind damage was also reported at the Madison Airport.

There were no reports of injuries.

Over 121 000 ha (300 000 acres) of crops damaged in Telangana, India

More than 121 000 ha of crops have been damaged over the past several days in the Indian state of Telangana due to floods. 

Road connectivity to many villages has been cut off as low-level bridges sustained severe damage.

All medium and minor irrigation projects are brimming with flood water following the heavy inflow and the tanks are facing the threat of breach because of heavy water storage and floods.

Microburst in Cassino, Italy

This spectacular microburst was captured in Cassino, Lazio, Italy on August 18.

Late-night storm sweeps over Kiev, causing severe floods, Ukraine

A severe storm swept over Kiev on August 15 and 16, dropping heavy rain and hail and producing strong winds.

The storm caused severe flash flooding, flooding homes and cars and washing away pavements.

Nearly one foot of hail (30 cm) falls in Rosita, Colorado

That's not snow… Nearly one foot (30 cm) of hail fell at Richard Posadas' house in Rosita, Colorado on August 18.

One killed, three missing after landslide hits Upputhodu in Idukki, Kerala

One person was killed, 3 are still missing, and 4 ha (10 acres) of agricultural land was washed away when flood water mixed with boulders came gushing down from top of a hill at Upputhodu near Thopramkudy in Idukki on August 17.

At least 370 people have died in the state since August 8, authorities said August 19. Over 633 000 people have been moved to relief camps.

Mudslide traps several families in Charleston, Virginia

Several families were trapped in their homes after heavy rain throughout August 18 caused a mudslide to cover Cooks Hollow Road in Charleston, Virginia's Kanawha County.

All of them were evacuated but there is still no word when the road will be cleared.

14 people injured as severe storm rolls through Oklahoma, canceling Backstreet Boys concert

At least 14 people were injured and hospitalized after an entrance at a resort hosting Backstreet Boys concert collapsed as severe storm packing 130 km/h (80 mph) winds rolled through parts of Oklahoma.

According to media reports, an evacuation of the resort was ordered but some 150 people 'did not heed staff warnings.'

A review of volcanic eruptions underway by satellite images: Krakatau, Sierra Negra, Kadovar and Ambae

This is an excellent post by Bernard Duyck of Earth of Fire published on August 18.

Bernard collected imagery and data and analyzed recent activity at 4 volcanoes, some of which 'we haven't heard from' in a while.

Weak to moderate eruption taking place at Semeru volcano, Indonesia

Likely new eruption at Heard Island volcano, Indonesia

It seems very likely that a new eruption has been taking place at the remote volcano. Since mid-June, and in particular during the second half of July, a moderate to strong thermal anomaly has been present at the volcano's summit, Volcano Discovery reported.

The nature of this activity is unknown: it could be from strombolian activity, a small lava lake, and/or new lava flows (although a quick browse through satellite images did not show dark spots that would be expected in case of lava flows).

New video of very bright fireball over the U.S. Southeast on August 17

A very bright fireball, at least 40 times as bright as the Full Moon, streaked across the night sky over the U.S. Southeast at 05:19 UTC (12:19 CDT) on August 17, 2018. The event lasted several seconds and was followed by a sonic boom.

Read more

Microburst in Russia's Altai region

Another amazing microburst event was recorded this week. This one took place in Russia's Altai region on August 17

Tropical cyclones "Soulik" and "Cimaron" affecting South Korea and Japan

Tropical Cyclone "Soulik" formed August 15 and is currently a Category 3 cyclone. It is expected to hit the Korean Peninsula on August 22 with wind gusts up to 200 km/h (124 mph) when it makes landfall. Torrential rain is likely to cause flooding and a storm surge threatens to trigger coastal flooding.

Tropical Cyclone "Cimaron" developed within the last 24 hours and is currently a tropical storm with winds gusting to 90 km/h (56 mph).

The storm is currently strengthening and according to the current track, it will make landfall in central Honshu, Japan on August 23 with wind gusts over 165 km/h (102 mph). There are concerns that the cyclone could bring flash flooding at landfall.

Large hai hits Kairouan, Tunisia

Italy bridge collapse death toll reaches 43

At least 43 people have died as a huge section of highway bridge collapsed in Italian port city of Genoa during an intense storm on August 14, authorities said August 18. The disaster occurred around 09:30 UTC on a highway that connects Italy to France and other vacation resorts on the eve Ferragosto, a major Italian holiday.

Landspout tornado near Lida, Belarus

Weather pattern change in Europe over the next 10 days

Much of the continent is about to experience a much more dynamic weather pattern over the next 10 days, SWE meteorologists said August 19.

A series of deep troughs are pushed from the Atlantic across Europe, pushing cooler maritime airmass as far south as the Iberian peninsula and north-central Mediterranean. Cooler weather ahead, likely good severe thunderstorm potential ahead of these disturbances. Excessive rainfall in some areas.

Very deep M8.2 earthquake hits Fiji region, two M6+ aftershocks

A very strong earthquake registered by the USGS as M8.2 hit Fiji region at 00:19 UTC (12:19 local time) on August 19, 2018. The agency is reporting a depth of 563.4 km (350 miles). EMSC is reporting M8.2 at a depth of 558 km (346 miles). This earthquake can have a low humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability.

Some 2 000 people are estimated to have felt moderate shaking, 1 011 000 light and 20 000 weak.

There are no reports of damage.

Read more

Shallow M6.3 aftershock hits Lombok, 2 weeks after devastating M7.0 killed more than 460, Indonesia

A strong and shallow earthquake registered by the BMKG as M6.3 hit the Indonesian island of Lombok at 04:10 UTC (12:10 local time) on August 19, 2018. The agency is reporting a depth of 14 km (8.7 miles). USGS is also reporting M6.3 and a depth of 7.9 km (4.9 miles). This earthquake can have a medium humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability. It hit the same region where a devastating M7.0 killed more than 460 people just 14 days ago.

Read more

Very bright fireball over the Adriatic Sea on August 18

A very bright fireball was seen streaking through the night sky over the Adriatic Sea at 18:56 UTC (21:56 CET) on August 18, 2018. The event lasted more than 3 seconds before the object disintegrated near San Marino in northeastern Italy.

The event was witnessed from southwestern Croatia, Slovenia and northern Italy and reported as 'extremely' bright.

Read more

Another powerful M7.0 earthquake hits Lombok, Indonesia

Just two weeks after devastating M7.0 earthquake which killed more than 460 people, another powerful earthquake hit the same region at 14:56 UTC (22:56 local time) on August 19, 2018. BMKG is reporting it as M7.0 at a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). USGS is reporting M6.9 at a depth of 20.3 km (12.6 miles). This earthquake can have a high humanitarian impact based on the magnitude and the affected population and their vulnerability.

Read more

9 killed, 3.5 million affected as Typhoon "Rumbia" wreaks havoc across central and eastern China

At least 9 people have been killed and 18 injured after Typhoon "Rumbia" wreaked havoc across central and eastern China over the past couple of days. About 3 512 000 people have been affected as well as 420 000 hectares (1.37 million acres) of crops. The storm has also damaged more than 5 800 homes.

The typhoon made landfall near the city Shanghai just after 04:00 local time August 17 (20:00 UTC, August 16) with maximum sustained winds around 90 km/h (55 mph).

Read more

Featured image: Sierra Negra – Sentinel-2 image bands 12-11-4 / 10.08.2018 – zoom B.Duyck


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