World weather news
World weather news, January 2000
- Ferocious windstorms that hit Europe at the end of 1999 may trigger insurance claims of up to seven billion Swiss francs, with the overall damage perhaps twice as high, a Swiss Re expert was quoted as saying.
Storm Lothar, which struck with hurricane force, should cost insurers around four billion to five billion francs, of which around three billion was in France, Werner Schaad, head of Swiss Re's natural disasters unit, told the Tages-Anzeiger newspaper.
A storm dubbed Martin, which hit two days later primarily in France, did much less damage.
- Heavy rain in southeastern Brazil swept away bridges and flooded cities, spreading devastation that killed at least 28 people and left tens of thousands homeless. But civil defense warned that the death toll could rise after rescuers investigate the 60 or so houses that were buried under mud in the mountain resort city of Campos de Jordao.
- Thousands of homes were without power and storm debris littered streets and yards following a tornado that ripped through Owensboro and other parts of western Kentucky.
Some of the most serious damage occurred at Kentucky Wesleyan University where the roof of the president's house was ripped off and nearly every building on campus suffered some damage. The campus was largely empty because students had not returned from Christmas break.
No official damage estimates were available but about 50 houses were destroyed and many others damaged. There were several injuries though no deaths were blamed on the tornado in Owensboro. One man died near Paducah, Kentucky, when his truck was swept off a road by floodwaters from heavy rains that accompanied the storm front.
The same storm system dumped heavy snow from parts of Kansas northeastward to Wisconsin and lower Michigan. There were also reports of tornadoes Monday in Arkansas, Missouri, Illinois and Indiana.
- Perth (Australia) today came to the end of one of its longest heatwaves
on record. The city's weather station has recorded a top
temperature of over 32C for each of the 15 days from 24
December up to today. The maximum on Saturday 8 January of
30.6C brought that run to an end. The record is 16
consecutive days in February 1996. The hot weather began on
17 December, and since then only 2 days have had maxima
below 32 - 20 and 23 December. The thermometer exceeded
35C on 13 occasions, and the highest readings were 39.6C on
22 December and 39.3C on 27 December.
- The La Nina weather pattern has increased the chances of tropical cyclones hitting Vanuatu, New Caledonia and the Solomon Islands this cyclone season, according to the National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (New Zealand).
- Torrential rain continued to fall in parts of Western
Australia's north this morning, while the south of the
state experienced severe thunderstorms, gale force winds
and flooding during the afternoon and evening.
Over 100mm fell in around 6 hours in the Broome area of
this morning. Houses were flooded, roads
closed, and phone and power lines cut as a result of the
- A fierce windstorm battered the Pacific Northwest USA, knocking out power to hundreds of thousands of people, closing highways and killing two men. Electrical service had been restored to most customers by Monday. Wind along the coast gusted to 115 mph at Cannon Beach, Ore., and 109 mph at Long Beach, Wash.
Gusts hitting 81 mph at Netarts, Ore., pushed a house 12 feet off of its foundation. The Space Needle in Seattle was closed because of the unnerving effect as the 610-foot structure swayed in the wind. More than 300,000 homes and businesses lost power in Washington at the height of the storms Sunday.
- In Venezuela, heavy rain caused more flooding in a zone devastated by killer mudslides last month, but authorities reported no deaths. Some 20 mountainside houses collapsed in Caracas. Also, part of a key road in Vargas state along the Caribbean coast was washed out, preventing relief workers from reaching eight coastal communities still recovering from the December floods.
- A state of emergency was declared in the Gaza Strip and the West bank as strong winds and gales lashed the area.
- An avalanche swept a bus into the sea in northern Norway, killing at least five people. Police said they believed up to 10 people were on the bus when it was caught in the avalanche, but that number could not be confirmed. Local fishermen and rescue crews plucked at least two survivors and five bodies from the icy water. The accident occurred along a fjord near Lyngseidet, 1,000 miles north of Oslo. The bus and a car were waiting for a snowplow to open the road after a previous avalanche. Rescue crews also feared additional avalanches, as storms in the past few days have left thick layers of wet and heavy snow on the steep slopes above the road that runs along the fjord.
- The hot air mass that has lingered over South Australia
for the past nine days moved northeast today. Sydney and surrounds suffered
temperatures in the western suburbs skyrocketing into the
low 40s. Liverpool recorded a maximum of 42.7C, just 0.1C
short if its hottest January day in 38 years of record.
- Heavy snow storms cut off
several crossings on the Czech-German border and blocked
many internal Czech roads.
Some areas reported up to 30cm of new
snow overnight. Mountain rescue officials in the northern
Krkonose Mountains, popular with skiers, raised the area's
avalanche danger warning to level four on its five-level scale.
- A violent winter storm with
winds as high as 100km/h paralysed
Canada's east coast provinces, forcing banks,
schools and post offices to close.
By early Friday afternoon 30cm of snow
had fallen in at least two of the three Maritime provinces of
New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island and 40 centimetres
more snow was expected by the evening.
- The season's first major snow in
the mid-Atlantic states blanketed Washington on Thursday,
shutting schools, disrupting flights and giving federal
workers the option to take an unscheduled day of leave.
Starting before dawn, 3 to 6 inches of snow fell in Washington
before tapering off by noon. The policy for federal workers
meant they could take the day off and deduct it from their
annual vacation time.
Temperatures in New York dropped to 25F
but the wind chill factor made it feel like 10F.
- Heavy snowfall and fierce winds
continued to inundate parts of eastern and southeastern Europe.
A state of emergency remained in place Sunday for a third
day in parts of central Czech Republic. In the upper Austrian city of
Steyr, four people were injured, one seriously, after being buried by an
avalanche. Snow and high winds also continued to batter Romania,
where six people were killed in three avalanches over the weekend.
- A rare winter ice storm swept
through northern Georgia (USA) , leaving at least
450,000 people temporarily without electricity.
The unusual weather, part of a coastal storm that dumped
snow, sleet and freezing rain on several southern states,
knocked down trees and power lines in about 40 counties in
- Blizzards swept across Yugoslavia
with heavy snows falling for more than 24 hours in most of
the country, severely disrupting traffic and closing airports in
Podgorica and Tivat.
In Belgrade, the temperature plummeted to -9C overnight with strong
Forecasters warned that the temperature would drop further to
minus 22 degrees during the week but expected the snow to stop by
For the first time in 30 years, 10 centimeters (three inches) of
snow blanketed the Montenegrin capital, Podgorica, which usually
enjoys a Mediterranean climate.
Navigation on the Danube river was halted by high winds and
snow. Snowdrifts reached
three meters on roads leading to Kopaonik mountain in the south.
- More snow and ice blanketed
parts of the southeastern United States on Monday after
weekend storms in the region left more than 450,000 people
in three states without power.
In North Carolina icy roads were to blame for a two-vehicle
crash on Monday that killed one person near Rocky Mount,
and a 10-car pileup that injured several others near Raleigh.
- Snow storms in Romania
have knocked out electricity supplies to scores of villages and
snarled road and rail traffic.
The Sulina canal of the River Danube and the Danube port of
Galati were closed due to high winds, but all Black Sea ports
and airports continued to operate.
the Transport Ministry
Romania's northern counties were worst hit. Fifty-six villages
in Maramures and Suceava were without electricity, along
with 28 in Arad county.
- National Guard troops were
mobilized in North Carolina and Virginia to
distribute emergency equipment and rescue stranded people
as the most powerful winter storm in 72 years closed airports,
buried highways and left at least three people dead.
Hundreds of thousands of people were without power as
blizzard-like conditions piled snow in huge drifts and ripped
down trees and power lines.
A record 18.2 inches of snow fell at Raleigh-Durham
International Airport, eclipsing the record of 17.8 inches in a
single day set in Raleigh-Durham on March 2, 1927.
- Minimum temperatures across Europe included values of -15C at Elsenborn in the Ardennen, -21.8C at Munich, -24.2 at Zweisel and -26.8 at Oberstdorf (following -28.2C the pervious night). In some places reading were the lowest since January 1987.
- A rare
snowstorm dumped at least 15 inches
of snow on Jerusalem today and
covered the northern Negev Desert for
the first time in half a century,
toppling trees, closing roads and
isolating cities throughout Israel.
In neighboring Jordan, the storm dumped two feet of
snow on Amman, the capital of the desert nation, and
nearly three feet in other regions, including the
usually arid south and east.
- At least 11 people were killed
and more than 20,000 fled their homes as four days of heavy rains
pounded the southern Philippines, triggering floods and landslides.
Floods several feet deep inundated several
homes, forcing residents to flee to roof tops
or climb trees.
The rains, which started on Friday, battered the Compostela Valley and
four provinces on Mindanao island, wrecking several houses, damaging
bridges, knocking out power in some areas and destroying agricultural
World weather news, February 2000
Floodwaters caused by torrential rains in the northern part of
South Africa left at last 19 people dead as they washed away roads and bridges and snarled traffic. South African Broadcasting Corp. said that 15 people drowned when they tried to cross a swollen
river in Northern Province. Two others drowned in the same province, while details of the remaining
deaths were not reported.
Parts of the popular Kruger National Park were isolated because of flooded roads. Parks customer
relations manager Chris van der Linde said 18.4 inches of rain had fallen in 18 hours. A restaurant's
windows were broken and furniture was floating away, he said.
- The Mozambican Government has appealed for urgent
humanitarian aid for people displaced by floods as
torrential rain continues thorughout southern Africa.
Along with South Africa, Swaziland and Mozambique
are experiencing their heaviest rainfall in decades.
The downpours have also spread westward to the
normally-arid Botswana, where crops have been badly
More than 70 people are
reported to have died in
southern Africa as a result
of the floods and tens of
thousands have been left
- Flooding and impassably boggy roads continue to halt transport across a vast
area of northern South Australia and southern Northern Territory (NT) as patchy heavy showers continue. In what
the NT Department of Transport has described as the worst Central Australian
floods since 1988, the main north/south Stuart Highway remains blocked by the
flooded Finke and Palmer Rivers south of Alice Springs, both flowing about 2km
in NT, Tennant Creek Airport received
90mm in 3 hours to 6am, 70.4 of this falling in one hour to 5.30am. Shops in
the town's main street were flooded when drainage failed to cope.
- Tornadoes have swept across south-west Georgia, in
the United States, killing at least 22 people and injuring
more than 100.
tornado struck at 0100 EST
(0600 GMT) in the Mitchell
County town of Camilla,
about 320 km (200 miles)
south of Atlanta.
A five-mile wide swathe of
destruction was cut
through the southern part
of the town, resulting in
huge damage to a housing development.
- Mozambique faces a new onslaught of floodwaters as
rain which fell in South Africa's highlands rushes
towards the coast.
The government in Maputo says more than 200,000
people have been already been affected by the floods.
Large parts of Mozambique,
South Africa, Swaziland and
Botswana last week
experienced their heaviest
rains in 40 years, which
caused widespread flooding
in all four countries.
Although the heaviest
storms are over, rain is still
falling over southern
Mozambique, and the greatest threat comes from
swollen rivers that are carrying more water into the
- Record amounts of rain for February
fell across western New South Wales and Victoria (Australia). A slow
moving trough fed copious amounts of moisture into the area and
colder air aloft gave plenty of instability to produce widespread
24 hour totals of 50 to 150mm were
recorded across thousands of
square kilometres of western NSW,
northwest Victoria and in a band
from southwest Queensland to the
Central Qld Coast. Pooncarie (NSW)
its heaviest day's rain in a record
stretching back to 1882, while
also had an all-time record with
- The hundreds of millimetres of rain which have fallen over central
and western Queensland (Australia) over the past week have gradually swollen streams to
the point where the first major flood levels were reached today.
Landsborough Creek and the Bulloo River at
Quilpie both peaked with major flooding, while major flooding is
expected over the next couple of weeks in the Georgina, Diamantina
and Thompson Rivers as inland seas of brown water lazily make their
way to the south or southwest. All of the streams in flood drain
into Lake Eyre, or lose themselves in desert sands.
- Hundreds of thousands
of people were stranded without food
and aid workers warned of an imminent
humanitarian crisis after a cyclone and flooding in
Cyclone Eline lashed Mozambique yesterday with
winds that ripped off roofs and downed power lines
and with rain that added to the misery of weeks of
flooding from torrential rains that already had killed
67 people and displaced 211,000.
Vast tracts of land in southern Mozambique remained submerged under
muddy brown water and were only accessible by air.
- Monsoon rains have turned the parched heart of Australia into
an inland sea, with waterfalls cascading down the face of the giant Uluru (Ayers Rock) and outback towns flooded.
Tourists have been expecting to see spectacular sunsets but instead are in awe of seeing waterfalls
coming down the rock," an Ayers Rock Resort spokeswoman said.
Uluru, which stands 348m above the flat desert in the Northern Territory, has
received more than half its annual rainfall in the past three days.
South of Uluru, three major river systems, the Finke, Hugh and Palmer Rivers have broken their
banks, flooding into the flat desert landscape.
- A storm packing
tornado-like bursts of wind and driving rain damaged
buildings, snarled highways and was blamed for two
fatal traffic crashes in southern California.
The California Highway Patrol said there were more
than 570 accidents.
The storm dumped 1.43 inches of rain on Burbank and left up to 8 inches of fresh snow in Big Bear.
Snow that began falling at higher elevations Wednesday night also led to the closure of Interstate 5,
a major link connecting Los Angeles to San Francisco. The highway was closed in both directions
over the mountainous Grapevine pass.
- Tropical cyclone Steve hit Cairn (Australia) with 105mph winds
on Sunday as the center passed over the city. There was widespread structural
damage. The storm began to weaken during the evening as it moved inland, but it then moved back over the Gulf of Carpentaria and regained some strength
on Monday. After being over water for much of Tuesday, it then came ashore
again late on Tuesday over the Northern Territory. More than 200mm of rain fell in places.
- At least thirteen people have been killed following heavy rains in
Brazil's largest city, Sao Paulo.
Most of the victims came from the same shanty town, where
improvised shacks were buried by a mudslide.
Rescuers had to work for several hours to find all the bodies.
two-hour rainstorm also caused chaos on the city's roads.
- Heavy weather has delayed the launch of the UK's biggest ocean
racer, built by Pete Goss.
Although the 70ft-wide carbon fibre Team Philips is designed to sail
through the storms of the Southern Ocean, the project's insurers
have said the launch in Totnes, Devon, cannot go ahead in winds of
more than 20mph. It cost nearly £2.5m to build.
On Monday night the boat was inched out of its hanger on to the
quayside ready to be hoisted into the water, despite fears that gale
force winds could scupper its maiden voyage.
But high winds and the flooded
state of the river have forced Mr
Goss, a 36-year-old former
marine, to postpone the launch.
World weather news, March 2000
- A tornado lashed through seven villages
in northwestern Bangladesh, injuring 50 people and leaving at least
3,000 homeless. The tornado, which hit the Natore
district shortly before midnight Saturday, battered nearly 500 tin and
thatch cottages and uprooted hundreds of trees. Wheat crops were
damaged across nearly 100 acres along the river Godai, 100 miles
northwest of the national capital, Dhaka.
Tornadoes and severe storms are common at the end of winter
- Cyclone Steve, which lashed Australia's
northwest coast with strong winds and flooding rains overnight,
weakened Tuesday after moving inland.
However, weather warnings remained in place for parts of the Pilbara
region of Western Australia state, as forecasters warned that the storm
may strengthen again if it moves back offshore.
The swirling winds and driving rain of a tropical cyclone develops from
an area of low pressure over the ocean, but the conditions usually
dissipate quickly once the eye of the storm crosses overland.
Cyclone Steve has formed three times and died twice in the past 10
days, as it traveled the length of Australia's north coast, leaving a trail
- Several hundred people were stranded
Tuesday in freezing temperatures on buses and trucks on a
snow-blocked road in northeastern Turkey.
Rescue teams were trying to reach several vehicles trapped in
a snowstorm on Kizildag Mountain, between the cities of Sivas and
Erzincan. At least nine buses and
several trucks had been stranded on the mountain road for about 12
hours. Freezing temperatures and snow hit most of Turkey on Monday,
blocking many main roads and cutting off some 4,000 villages in the
produced high winds and hail, blew down trees, and
blew out windows near Milwaukee (USA).
Officials said at least one tornado was sighted. The
National Weather Service had earlier posted a
tornado alert for the city. The worst damage appeared to have been a broken
gas main and a tipped-over tanker.
rains drenched flood-ravaged southern
Mozambique Thursday, soaking
hundreds of thousands of displaced
people crammed into aid camps,
hampering relief operations and raising
fears of further flooding. The floods -
the worst on record in Mozambique -
have already killed hundreds, and the
toll may reach into the
thousands.While the effect of the new
rain was not immediately apparent, it
forced three aid helicopters to
temporarily return to Maputo early
- Record-setting temperatures soared as high as
the 70s around the Northeast USA.
In Worcester, the temperature climbed to 74 degrees, leapfrogging the old record of 60 for the date. It
was 34 degrees above the normal high.
Records were set at 78 degrees in Atlantic City, New Jersey, and at 73 in both Scranton,
Pennsylvania, and Rochester, New York. Boston was a record 72. Even far-north Burlington,
Vermont went to 66 - beating the record set when the mercury hit 60 in 1921.
- The UN says it is deeply concerned about severe flooding in
Madagascar, as aid workers try to reach remote villages cut off by
The agency says more than
half-a-million people have been
affected by torrential rain which
has devastated much of the
There are reports that the island's
once-pristine beaches are littered
with dead birds and cattle. Coffins
have been dredged up by the
Cyclone Eline tore through
Madagascar last month before heading on to devastate
It was followed recently by Cyclone Gloria.
- Without food aid, Mongolia could
face large-scale starvation as the coldest winter in 30 years continues to
kill the livestock that are the mainstay of the country's rural economy.
More than 1.4 million farm animals have died
in 13 provinces, directly affecting 500,000 people, roughly 20 per cent of the
country's 2.7 million people.
Unusually early and severe blizzards began hitting
Mongolia in September, following a summer of drought. At least four
people have died in temperatures well below 0F and heavy snows
have covered the grasses herds live on.
- The winter of 1999-2000 was the warmest winter in the
States since the government began keeping records 105 years ago, the
National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration said.
This marked the third year in a row that record warmth was recorded in
the United States during the winter months. Since 1980 more
than two-thirds of U.S. winters have been warmer than average, NOAA
- Tropical Cyclone Steve made landfall in
Australia for the third time since it formed last
week. Steve moved onshore near Carnarvon in
western Australia Friday morning, Australian
time. Steve brought heavy rain and gusty winds
to the much of western Australia. Forecasters
expect near record flooding as the system slowly
moves over Western Australia through the
The meandering nature of the storm is unique because it
was able to survive for more than a week, even as it crossed major
tracks of land. It survived so long because it received a large amount of
moisture and energy from an unusually strong monsoon, which is
common over northern Australia this time of year.
- Steady rains continued to fall
Monday across northwestern Argentina, extending a week of heavy
rainfall and flooding that has left 10 people dead and forced some 15,000
people to evacuate their homes. Authorities reported two deaths
in the central city of Cordoba. Cordoba was hit by torrential rains, hail and blustery winds
on Sunday that left much of the city without drinking water or electricity.
Waters from the overflowing Suquia River uprooted trees and flooded
homes in Cordoba, Argentina's second-largest city.
- Former Tropical Cyclone Steve, which formed off Cairns in the early hours
of Sunday 27 February, went out with a bang today after completing a near
circuit of the continent. Steve entering the Great Australian Bight on
Saturday evening, still packing a punch with galeforce winds, torrential
rain, and a central pressure of 993mb. On Sunday and Monday, the ex TC
maintained intensity while moving southeast, picked up a passing Southern
Ocean trough last night, and moved S ofr Tasmania this morning bring brief
storm force winds as its associated front crossed the island. The AWS on
the summit of Mt Wellington recorded a peak gust of 133km/h, with a
10 minute average windspeed of 98km/h. At Maatsuyker Island, off Tasmania's
south coast, the barometer rose 11.1mb between 6am and noon, an unusually
large rise for this time of year.
- Since the start of the dry season at the end of February 2000, forest fires have
been rapidly spreading out of control in Sumatra and West Kalimantan in Indonesia. By
5 March 2000 more than 780 hot spots had been located over Sumatra, according the
Meteorological Service Singapore. Reportedly, most of the fires were triggered by
illegal burning of plantations and forests for land clearance.
The most affected area is Riau province on the east coast of Sumatra, facing
Singapore, followed by West Kalimantan province and Central Kalimantan province.
According to the national authorities, in Pekanbaru, capital of Riau province, the air
pollution index has registered levels high above those considered hazardous to human
health. Clouds of smoke and some haze have been billowing over the area. Although
recent rainfall has doused some of the fires and improved visibility, the situation is still
- Rome's Fiumicino Airport was closed early today due to
heavy fog. Eighteen flights were cancelled and departing aircraft
experienced delays of up to two hours. Heavy fog disrupted traffic at other airports in
northern and central Italian cities such as Ancona and Bologna.
- At least 34 people were injured
as two tornadoes left a mile-long line of damaged
homes, downed power lines and debris-strewn
streets in two southern Louisiana (USA) parishes.
- At least four people were killed and more than 100 injured as
tornadoes carved paths of destruction through Fort Worth in
Tornadoes hit the centre of the
city just after the evening rush
windows in high-rise buildings,
overturning cars and uprooting
The storms were accompanied by
torrential rain and giant
- Storms and dense cloud cover in the high
mountains delayed the search Wednesday for two snowboarders
reported missing after an Alpine avalanche buried skiers beneath tons
of snow, killing at least 11 people. Ten people were found dead in the
area of the huge snow slide south of Salzburg and another died at a
hospital. Two others were able to free themselves while rescuers dug
out a third survivor.
World weather news, April 2000
- Hudah charted a devastating course across Madagascar
Sunday night and Monday, killing two people. In the northeastern town
of Antalaha, the storm destroyed all the wooden homes and buildings
and ripped the roofs off concrete structures. Telephone lines and
electricity were cut, and schools and churches were heavily damaged.
13 people are now known to have died in Madagascar,
when the powerful cyclone, Hudah, hit.
Cyclone Hudah has created a desperate
situation in northern Madagascar with
100,000 people homeless and in need of
shelter and food.
- A sustained drought across Ethiopia has left 8 million people facing shortages of food
and water. The worst conditions are in south east Ethiopia where 1.3 million are
affected and almost 600,000 people are in particular need; people are already dying.
- Scientists have discovered that Europe's permafrost, the frozen
earth covering mountain areas like the Alps, is melting.
Underground temperatures have
risen by nearly a degree in the
past decade - three times faster
than at any other time in the last
century. Buildings and villages will
be increasingly at risk.
Cable cars stations, restaurants
and even homes are built on
frozen ground beneath the snow,
where rocks and soil are literally
glued together by ice.
Now there is evidence that the underground ice is beginning to melt
causing new rockfalls down the slopes.
Professor Michael Davies, a civil
engineer from Dundee University,
is one of a group of world
experts in ice and snow who have
been visiting the St Moritz area
of Switzerland to investigate:
"Over the next 20- 30
years, we might find large
movement to structures such as
cable cars, and an increase in
debris flows causing problems to
villages which might lie in their
- Winds reaching 60 mph lashed Turkey's
northwest killing two elderly people and fanning fires that
burned down scores of village homes.
The strong southwesterly winds lifted roofs, uprooted trees and
knocked down electricity poles, cutting power in many regions. Fires
ignited by overturned stoves and heaters raged through dozens of
homes and stables in several of the region's villages. The
winds also helped fan forest and brush fires in at least 19 different
locations in the region, devastating more than 3,000 acres.
- Fierce winds laden with desert dust buffeted Beijing
in what local reports said was the worst such storm in 10
years. The dust delayed flight, entered windows and doors and sent
people scurrying for cover. Dozens of flights were delayed in Beijing's
Capital Airport and at least 40 flights were rerouted.
storms are caused by winds picking up dust from the arid deserts and
grasslands upwind from the city. Severe water shortages and sparse
vegetation in the desert and grassland have left soil loose and prone to
- The Jamaican government announced it
will shut off water supplies in some areas for several hours per day in
response to a 4-month-old drought in the Caribbean nation. The
government's National Water Commission will begin ''locking-off'' the
water supply to parts of Kingston for as long as eight hours a day
starting on Tuesday, with other parts of the country to follow.
Water levels at the two reservoirs serving
Kingston, the Jamaican capital, have grown dangerously low.
- Hungary has declared a state of emergency in the east of the country,
which is threatened by the worst floods in years.
Heavy rain and melting snow have swelled the Danube and Tisza rivers.
The government agreed to emergency measures for the region on
In neighbouring Romania, officials said heavy rains which started on
Wednesday had flooded thousands of houses. Hundreds of people have
At least five people are reported to have been killed - two in flash
floods and three in flooded villages close to the border with Hungary.
Officials closed flooded main roads in the central Transylvania
region, while high winds on Friday blew off the roofs of hundreds of
Hungary's emergency decree provided for temporary road closures and
the evacuation of residents.
- Spring floods have left thousands of people homeless in the
southern Russian city of Orsk in the region of Orenburg, on the
border with Kazakhstan.
Local media reports say at least one person is missing.
Residents are using boats to move around the city.
The regional deputy governor, Yuri Karpov, blamed the weather
service for inaccurate forecasts. Melting ice led to flooding of the
- Torrential rains Friday and Saturday was blamed for at least
8 deaths on China's southeast coast near Hong Kong. Reports in the
state newspaper says that the storm brought up to 25.1 inches of rain to
the area, causing flooding in Shenzhen, a bustling business center on the
Hong Kong border. Flooding from heavy rain was also reported in parts
of Hong Kong Friday.
- The government has declared nine drought-stricken
states in northern Mexico disaster areas, clearing the way for federal
aid, the government news agency Notimex reported Monday. States
across northern Mexico have been suffering from prolonged droughts
and have experienced less than half of the average rainfall, according to
Notimex reports. Similar drought conditions spread across the region
last year, killing cattle, parching crops and forcing some communities to
truck in drinking water.
- Heavy rain from a tropical storm is being
blamed for killing three people and injuring at least 50 others on this
low-lying country. The government's Meteorological Department
reports that wind speeds reached 56 mph and that more rain is expected
on Sunday and Monday. Last Wednesday, a tropical rainstorm that tore
through the country leveled mud-and-thatch huts, leaving 7,000 people
- More isolated communities in Hungary are being evacuated because
of days of flooding - the worst on record.
A week-long state of emergency has been extended around the
River Tisza, where rising water levels following heavy rain have
already led to more than seventeen-hundred people being taken to
The authorities say they're importing sand-bags from as far away as
the United States because local supplies have run out.
Floods have also hit northern Serbia, where rising river waters have
been diverted onto fields, ruining crops in order to protect towns.
But floodwaters in Romania have begun to receed.
More floods are being expected because winter snow is still melting.
- At least 15 people have been killed in landslides that
have destroyed homes and forced dozens to evacuate in Quito (Peru). A Red Cross
representative stated that close to 25 people have also been injured with
about 30 homes destroyed. Steady rain in the past six days is thought to
be the cause of the landslides. The region's rainy season is typically
September through May. 'We have had rain before, but not like this,
with landslides inside the city,'' said Quito Mayor Alfonso Lasso.
Ecuador's Meteorological Institute said that the rain has already totaled
5.5 inches so far this month, and the average rain in April has not
surpassed 6 inches in the last 15 years.
- Inhabitants have protested across the Indian state of Gujarat over
the failure of local authorities to cope with an ongoing drought
The cities of Rajkot, Jamnagar, Bhavnagar and Junagadh are the
worst affected, with residents getting water only once in three
Water supplies come by tanker but officials concede they have been
unable to meet demand.
This admission comes as summer temperatures have already hit
Over half the western state's villages have been hit by the drought,
which is reckoned to be the worst in 100 years.
Water scarcity has also hit wheat and groundnut crops Gujarat's
western Saurashtra, and many farmers unable to get fodder have
abandoned cattle along the roads.
- Tropical Cyclone
Rosita, packing winds of over 120 mph
across northwestern Australia
Thursday. The storm buffeted the
Outback town of Broome with heavy
rain and winds, The storm uprooted
trees and blew roofs off houses. No
injuries were reported. The weakening
cyclone is forecast to dissipate later on
Thursday over sparsely populated areas
of the Great Sandy Desert.
- A cholera outbreak, compounded by drought, has claimed 43
lives in 24 hours in central Somalia.
The governor of Hiran region, said 25 people were reported dead in
villages around the regional capital, Belet Huen, about 150km north of
Another 18 deaths were reported in villages around Gelib in the Middle Juba region.
The impact of cholera, which is spread by contaminated water, is being intensified by a drought that
has dried up fresh water sources and parched lands in neighboring Ethiopia, Kenya, Eritrea and
World weather news, May 2000
- 121mm fell in 24mm at Rosario (Argentina), the monthly normal being 140mm.
- The United
Nations warned of a crisis
in drought-ravaged Pakistan and
Afghanistan, where thousands are on
the move in search of water and entire
animal herds have died. An urgent appeal was
issued for $1.8 million for
Afghanistan people. The situation in
Pakistan's Baluchistan and Sindh
provinces is ''very critical,''.
Half a million people over 2
million acres of Pakistan's southwestern Baluchistan province suffered
from a shortage of water and 2.5 million people were affected in Sindh
province. In India's western states of Rajasthan and Gujarat, the drought
has affected more than 50 million people and killed thousands of cows,
goats and buffaloes. Even camels have died.
- Forest fires burned out of control in parts of Russia's Far
East, fueled by unusually dry and windy weather
Sixty-eight fires were raging on more than 11,100 acres of
forest in provinces along Russia's Pacific coast and in Eastern Siberia.
In one region, Buryatia, fires
have already destroyed about 24,700 acres of forest.
- Poelkapelle near Ypres
Severe 20 min. thunderstorm with cloudburst and hail near Ypres (Belgium). Village
streets under water to a depth of 20 cm. 80 or so houses also flooded.
Violent thunderstorm with hail on Sunday afternoon in Dieppe (France) and the surrounding
area. Cliff fall blocked the Dieppe-Rouen railway line. Dieppe had 48 mm rain.
Some 500 calls to the fire brigade in NE France - especially at Thionville where
some roads were made impassable by mud.
- Pakistan's military leader appealed to
Pakistanis at home and abroad to send help amid a drought that has left
at least 127 people dead, with doctors warning that more could die from
contaminated water supplies. Over the weekend, General Musharraf asked people to pray for rain
and announced a $37 million aid package for the worst hit areas. The
money is being used to get food and water to the area and help relocate
people who are able to move to areas with water.
- Cloudbursts caused some flooding in Mater, Ichtegem and Aarsele in east Flanders (Belgium).
In West Flanders - roads under water for a time and some houses flooded in
Aardooie and Tielt. Ghent-De Panne railway line flooded in Tielt.
The Wallonia - Liège area affected by local flooding and landslips,
especially the Ourthe valley around Tilff and Trooz. One man had to
escape from his car by swimming when caught in floods near Liège.
In Germany severe thunderstorms in Bavaria and parts of Saxony. Hundreds of calls to fire brigade to
deal with flooded roads, underpasses and cellars. Hailstones 2 cm in
diameter in the Oberallgau district of Bavaria. In SE Holland
Den Dungen near Den Bosch had 47 mm - with crops damaged by heavy hail.
- Violent thunderstorms struck western France, killing one
woman whose car was swept away by rising waters.
The storm hit the region north of the city of Rouen on
Wednesday night. The Austreberthe Valley was hardest hit when
floodwaters unleashed a wall of mud. A torrent of water in the town of
Barentin swept away the car of a woman who was then thrown from
the vehicle, which crashed into the windows of a cafe. About 200
hundred miles of roads were submerged and closed to traffic and train
traffic in the region also was delayed. Several hundred homes were
without electricity Thursday morning, and 16,000 people were without
Carteret on the Cherbourg Peninsula reported 48 mm.
- In the afternoon Paris had a severe thunderstorm - heavy rain, hail, gusts of
75 km/hr and visibility down to 800 m. Paris-Orly 38 mm rain;
Paris-Montsouris 47 mm.
- Typhoon Damrey quickly weakened to
winds of 50 mph as it soaked
Iwo Jima early Thursday
had winds of 180 mph
Tuesday night and forecasters
were concerned that the super
typhoon could bring
devastating winds and damage
to Iwo Jima. Fortunately,
Damrey weakened to 50 mph
winds before it hit Iwo Jima
- The first 12 days of May gave 160 hours of sunshine at Ronaldsway, Isle
of Man, an average of 13.3 hours per day. Tiree was almost as sunny, and
so was Dublin.
- A powerful storm lashed Buenos Aires
Province and parts of Uruguay on
Tuesday, killing three children at an
emergency shelter and forcing 25,000 to
flee rising floodwaters. The children
died and nine people were injured
when a tree fell and crushed the refuge
in Rosario. Over 100mm of rain fell in a few hours in Buenos Aires.
- The first half of May 2000 has been exceptionally warm
and sunny across the whole of Germany. Many areas report
a mean temperature anomaly up to the 17th of around
+5 degC. In the hills of central Germany, anomalies as
high as +7 degC are reported. Many northern areas have already
reached their monthly quota of sunshine with over 200 hours
in places. Although thunderstorm outbreaks have been frequent,
some regions have not yet had a single drop of rainfall in May.
The warm weather follows on from a very warm April,
which was the warmest since 1952 in Berlin.
- The heatwave in Germany, which saw temperatures peak at 33.9 C
at Zinnowitz, Usedom on the 17th, came to a spectacular end later that
day as severe thunderstorms swept from west to east. Munich had
98 mm in 12 hours, of which 68 mm fell within an hour. Hailstorms
were also reported in places while flash floods caused considerable
- Two days of downpours caused flooding that
killed at least six people and forced more than 100,000 to flee their
homes in Manila and several northern Philippine provinces. In metropolitan Manila, floodwaters rose chest-deep in
some areas and forced more than 7,000 people to evacuate.
High tides Thursday slowed the draining of floodwaters from
The floods were triggered
by continuous heavy rain Wednesday and Thursday over much of the
main Philippine island of Luzon. Much of the flooding in the capital has
been blamed on garbage clogging the city's drainage system.
- Floods washed away
refugee camps along the border between
East Timor and the
Indonesian-controlled western half of
the island, killing at least 50 people.
- In the 33h to 1200GMT 183mm fell in Bombay, India. The monthly mean for May is 17mm.
- Floods in
the northern Philippines triggered
by days of heavy rain killed at
least 10 people and left one
Tropical Storm Longwang which
caused the torrential rains over
wide areas of the northern
Philippines has weakened to a
tropical depression with winds
less than 39 mph. At the height of the rains and floods, about 112,000 people
were forced to flee their homes to escape rising floodwaters. Six people
drowned, three others were killed by collapsing structures and another
person died of electrocution.
- Incessant weekend rains in Columbia triggered flooding and
mudslides that killed at least 21 people, including seven who died when
a truck was swept away. Twelve people died
under torrents of earth in Pasto, capital of southern Narino State. The other two deaths were in Putumayo and
Santander states. Hundreds of families will have to be relocated. Meteorologists predicted more heavy rains ahead.
- 41.8C at Roswell (New Mexico, USA) was the highest on record for May there, some 14C above the normal for the time of year.
- More than 100 people suffered minor injuries when hailstones
bigger than golf balls fell on two states north of Tokyo. Hail fell on Chiba and Ibaraki prefectures for about an hour
early Wednesday afternoon. The largest hailstones reportedly measured
6 to 7cm in diameter. In Chiba, which borders northern Tokyo, at
least 76 people suffered light injuries and two were treated at local
hospitals. He said more
than 4,000 homes were damaged by the hailstorm, which in some areas
was accompanied by heavy rain, wind gusts and lightning.
- Oran (Algeria) had 30mm of rain in the 24h ending 0600GMT, more than one and half times the average for the month. In the next 6h 39mm fell at Algiers, the monthly mean being just 36mm.
Two rain-swollen rivers burst their banks and
flooded dozens of villages in northeastern Bangladesh, stranding at
least 70,000 people. Relief workers used boats to
delivering food and drinking water to villagers in the hard-hit
Maulvibazar district, 100 miles northeast of the capital of Dhaka, the
Flood Information Center said. The flooding occurred when four days
of torrential rains swelled the Manu and Dholai rivers.
- In western Rajasthan, over one million people have been
affected by the drought in this district caused largely by poor monsoon rains over
three successive years. In areas of Rajasthan the water-table is decreasing by 100 cm a
year leaving thousands of wells bone dry.
The latest in a series of New Mexico wildfires
exploded in size on Wednesday to become a 22,000-acre blaze that threatened towns
and water supplies in the Sangre de Cristo mountains, officials said.
Huge clouds of smoke billowed into the normally pristine air of northern New
Mexico and flames leaped several hundred feet into the sky as the fire consumed
mountain pine forests.
Some 600 firefighters were already on the scene and another 600 were expected to
arrive shortly to fight the fast-moving blaze.
- Drought-stricken peasant farmers tending their
fields in southern Ethiopia got a nasty shock when the heavens opened and they
were pelted by fish, a local newspaper reported.
"The unusual rain of fish which dropped in millions from the air - some dead and
others still struggling - created panic among the mostly religious farmers," the
weekly Amharic newspaper said.
Saloto Sodoro, a fish expert in the region, attributed the phenomenon to heavy
storms in the Indian Ocean which swept up the fish before shedding them on the
Southern Ethiopia has been in the grip of a severe drought for two years which aid
officials say threatens the lives of up to eight million people.
- Argentine farmers were still unable to harvest
their 1999/2000 soybean and corn crops in various key locations as persistent
humidity kept the fields wet and inaccessible, analysts said.
- At De Bilt May 2000 was the equal 4th warmest May in the last 100 years.
It was the 3rd warm May in a row.
May 2000 was noteworthy for the remarkable sequence of 12 days with 25C or more
ending on 16th. Even June has never had more than 10 such days in a row.
World weather news, June 2000
- Torrential rains have driven thousands of people
from their homes in the Chalco Valley near Mexico City in the worst floods in the region in five years.
Three children and two adults who had been camping drowned when a river
overflowed its banks on Wednesday.
- Residents of Sao Paulo, Brazil - South America's
largest urban area - braced Thursday for up to six months of water rationing
during what some meteorologists are calling its worst drought in 100 years.
As many as three million people in Sao Paulo, a business mecca that contributes at
least a quarter of Brazil's gross domestic product, will be without running water for
24 hours every third day as the water company turns off the tap.
- Spring thunderstorms that dumped as much as 8
inches of rain in 24 hours drove people from their homes and businesses,
closed roads and washed out bridges across parts of the U.S. Midwest.
In the southeast corner of the state south of Milwaukee the rising Fox River
threatened to force more evacuations, officials said.
The National Weather Service posted flash flood advisories for parts of southern
Wisconsin, northern Illinois, northeast Iowa and southeast Minnesota, a region
soaked by a parade of storms in recent days.
- Two days after heavy rains cause a open-air sewage
canal on the edge of Mexico City to overflow, thousands
of residents are camped out on roofs with their houses
swamped by a metre of foul smelling water and human
There are fears of disease as the people of Chalco
shunned emergency shelters and stayed on roofs to
ward off possible looting.
- A mudslide triggered by torrential rains swept
through a town in northern Guatemala, killing 13 people and injuring 24
others. The slide on
buried 21 homes in Senahu, about 75 miles northeast of
Guatemala City. Rescue workers said the slide left Senahu without
drinkable water and with almost no food. Government supply trucks
dispatched Wednesday morning had trouble reaching the area because
of impassable roads.
- India's southwest monsoon is progressing slightly ahead of schedule and is
expected to hit the drought-hit western Gujarat state in two to three days, weather department officials said
The monsoon rains, which account for about 80 percent of India's rainfall, arrived on schedule on June 1, over
the southern state of Kerala, the southern tip of the subcontinent.
The monsoon has covered most parts of southern India and is progressing north-westwards.
- Flooding and landslides in separate regions of China have
killed 74 people and left thousands homeless. Torrential rains triggered floods and landslides that left 38
people dead and left 12 missing in Sichuan province. Hail, flooding and landslides have devastated areas in
Gulin and Xuyong counties, 1,000 miles south of Beijing, since the
beginning of June. In Gansu province, widespread flooding has killed 36
people and left thousands homeless. Each summer, floods due to heavy
seasonal rains cause widespread damage in many parts of China.
- Heavy rainfall in parts of Australia today. Georgetown, 280km SW of
Cairns, recorded 60.4mm, its heaviest one-day June total in 118 years of record. Warruwi,
on a small island off the northern Northern Territory coast 290km ENE of Darwin, recorded a seemingly
insignificant 20mm, still its highest 24 hour total in 78 years. The heaviest 24 hour totals
were reported from the southwest Gulf of Carpentaria. Centre Island registered 72mm
while a gauge on the Limmen River 140km WNW along the southern Gulf coast registered
81mm. Median rainfall in this area is typically between 25 and 50mm for the entire 6 months
of Winter and Spring.
- Heavy rain and snow in southern France and the
Pyrenees Mountains caused flooding which left 1 dead and
forced hundreds of evacuations. The rain had subsided by Sunday, but
many homes remained without power. France's national power
company, EDF, was working to restore electricity to 700 homes in the
southeastern Rhone-Alps region. Many were forced to evacuate several
homes and campsites in the Ariege region near the Pyrenees. The
flooding was also blamed for a bus accident that killed one and injured
several others near the southwestern city of Toulouse.
- Four people are reported to have died, and another two
are missing, presumed dead, after heavy storms and
flooding in northern Spain.
Guardsmen drowned after their inflatable vessel
capsised in a river while they were searching for two
brothers who went missing after a road-bridge
collapsed, in north-eastern Catalonia. Spanish
newspapers reported that an elderly woman drowned in
floodwaters elsewhere in Catalonia, while an elderly
man was drowned off the Basque coast. There has been
snow and heavy rains on the French side of the
Pyrenees as well.
- At least 10 people are feared to have drowned in flash
floods in the north east Indian state of Arunachal
Officials say water levels in the Brahmaputra river and
its tributaries are dangerously high and still rising,
because of continuous rain in the Himalayan region.
The neighbouring state of Assam is also under threat
and preparations are underway to help stranded
More than 20,000 homes have been destroyed and
thousands of acres of crops and thousands of cattle have
been lost because of the floodwaters.
- A drought in central and eastern Europe is threatening
this year's food crops - with Romania, Slovakia, Serbia
and Croatia worst affected.
Much of the region has had no rain for six weeks.
- Record high temperatures and heavy air
conditioning demand overwhelmed parts of Northern California's power grid, with local utilities resorting to rolling blackouts in a bid to
avoid more widespread outages.
The San Francisco Bay Area was sweltering, with temperatures hitting
unofficial highs of 105F in San Jose and 95F
in San Francisco - a city better known for summer fog than
- Torrential rain wreaked havoc on Chile's
capital Santiago and surrounding areas on Wednesday, flooding streets,
causing traffic chaos and forcing authorities to close schools.
President Ricardo Lagos declared the capital a catastrophe zone, immediately
opening public coffers to fund emergency aid.
Houses in several districts were flooded under 1 metre of water and
hundreds of cars were stranded on streets that turned into rivers overnight
because of the rain which fell uninterrupted.
In the 24-hour period leading up to 1200 GMT on Thursday 43.3mm of rain had fallen in Santiago. This year 196.8mm has fallen in the capital, which is 141 percent above the average
- A long spell of drought and heat has damaged
crops in North Korea, which already depends on outside aid to feed its
hunger-stricken people. Hundreds of thousands of acres
of farmland were hard hit by drought.The bad weather did the worst damage in Pyongyang and plains on the
west coast. Water levels in lakes have fallen, and small reservoirs,
rivers and streams are dried up. Paddy fields are parched, with the
roots of rice plants exposed to sunlight.
- An avalanche thundered down on a rescue team working on
a snow-covered mountain in northwest Japan, killing four
people and injuring five others. The avalanche hit the 5,198-foot Mount
Asakusa in Niigata prefecture. The avalanche
claimed the lives of two policemen, one firefighter and a volunteer,
police said. The
avalanche struck near the village of Irihirose, about 124 miles northwest
of Tokyo. Snowfall on the mountain was exceptionally heavy this
- A drought spreading across north China has left at least
3.2 million people short of water, brought out swarms of locusts and
threatened hundreds of thousands of farmers with economic ruin. People are low on water in the eastern
province of Shandong and farmers are being forced to make long treks
and line up for water as reservoirs run dry. Just 24 inches of rain have fallen on Shandong since September
1998, the smallest amount of rain in nearly 50 years. In contrast,
provinces along the Yangtze, China's longest river, were warned
Tuesday to prepare for possible summer flooding following large
rainfalls on the river's upper reaches and tributaries.
- An exceptional heatwave on the longest days of the year has
led to all-time record June temperatures across parts of
central and northern Germany. On the 20th, the heat was
concentrated over lower Rhine valley with 37.3C in Koblenz,
while, further east, Berlin's 36.1C was a new June record.
Several stations reported minima above 22C on the following night
with an exceptional 23.8C recorded at Alexanderplatz in the
centre of Berlin. On the 21st, Berlin's Tegel airport reported
a new June record on 36.9C as the heatwave shifted further
east leading to peak readings of 37.9C at Cottbus and 38.6C
at Preschen, both in the low-lying Lausitz valley near the border
Similarly in Poland - Szczecin 35.6C, Poznan 36.5C.
- Torrential rain triggered landslides and crumpled houses in
southeast China, killing 19 people.
One Fujian county, Longhai, received 15
inches of rain in one day. The flooding signalled the onset of the often
devastating Chinese summer flood season, which causes widespread
damage and sometimes kills hundreds. Precautions are being taken
throughout much of China to prepare for the upcoming flood seaso
- Floods from unusually heavy rains threaten
Guyana's staple commodities and could hamper economic growth.
The flooding has hit rice and sugar crops and bauxite output, export products that are
critical to the economy.
- A brush fire spread by windy conditions
forced firefighters to evacuate 450 homes in suburban Halifax, Canada. No injuries were reported and no houses had caught fire by
Wednesday evening. The fire covered at least 100 acres of forest.
The fire came within
100 yards of a subdivision with about 1,000 homes. The cause of the fire
- Searchers recovered the bodies of two
people who were swept away along with four others by an
avalanche on Humboldt Peak in Venezuela. The avalanche was the worst climbing accident in
history at Humboldt Peak, civil defence officials said.
- Hurricane Carlotta, which was a 150 mph hurricane for a brief time on
Wednesday, has begun to weaken as it moves northwest over the
eastern Pacific Ocean. The storm, with winds of 100 mph, spared the
Mexico coastline all but a few showers and some big waves on Wednesday.
The hurricane is forecast to weaken during the next several days as it
moves over cooler water.
- A Chinese domestic airliner flying in a thunderstorm
crashed in central China, killing all 42 people on board. The domestically-manufactured aircraft,
carrying 38 passengers and four crew, went down at 3 p.m. in a
sparsely populated suburb of Wuhan city in Hubei province. The Wuhan Airline plane, a
domestically made YUN-7, was flying from Hubei's Enshi county to
Wuhan, the provincial capital, the airline said, attributing the crash to a
- Summer-like heat that began months earlier
than usual are taking a deadly toll on parts of South Asia. On the heels
of a warmer-than-normal winter, temperatures steadily climbed as
high as 122F as early as March this year, killing scores of people.
Pakistan and Afghanistan face the worst of the dry heat wave, with
lakes and wells drying up, crops killed, and disease breaking out. The
region?s monsoon season should bring relief to Pakistan next month,
meteorologists say. But Afghanistan does not have a monsoon season,
leaving many to wonder how they'll make it through an expected
- Moldova, hit by a severe three-month drought, is likely to
gather a meagre 500,000 tonnes of wheat this year, below even last year's disastrous 790,000
tonnes and just half the 1998 figure, the agriculture ministry said.
The drought had already cost Moldova $320 million.
- Very high temperatures again in Central Europe. Warsaw 35.1C; Poznan 35.5C; Vienna 35.9C; Bratislava and Budapest
36.3C; Brno and Gyor 36.6°C.
- LATE NEWS: The first thunderstorm on record moved through the Barrow (Alaska) area and dropped 0.16
inches of rain in just a couple minutes. In the past, numerous thunderstorms and lightning have
been reported in the records but always at a distance. Many calls were received at the weather
office from people who have just witnessed their first thunderstorm and lightning display.
- Summer-like heat that began months earlier
than usual are taking a deadly toll on parts of South Asia. On the heels
of a warmer-than-normal winter, temperatures steadily climbed as
high as 122F as early as March this year, killing scores of people.
Pakistan and Afghanistan face the worst of the dry heat wave, with
lakes and wells drying up, crops killed, and disease breaking out. The
region's monsoon season should bring relief to Pakistan next month,
meteorologists say. But Afghanistan does not have a monsoon season,
leaving many to wonder how they'll make it through an expected
- Lightning struck a tree where a dozen
farmers had sought shelter from a thunderstorm in the central
Philippines, killing seven and seriously injuring the others.
The dead in the town of Murcia in the Negros Occidental
province included two women, two brothers and a father and son who
had gone to a farm to plant rice. Police said those injured by the
lightning were being treated for body and head burns.
World weather news, July 2000
- The the worst dry
spell in 30 years in Afghanistan is devastating entire provinces in the south and relentless
rains are wiping out whole villages north of the capital. The drought has
wiped out entire herds and sent tens of thousands of people searching
for water. Meanwhile, powerful storms in the Sheikh Ali district of
Parwan province north of Kabul have destroyed entire villages,
according to Radio Shariat.
stalled over a little town called Vanguard in south-western
Saskatchwan dropped 333 mm of rain
in an 8 hour period. That's more than they normally
get in a year-and-a-half. Most of the town is flooded, roads are
closed or washed out and there is no drinkable water.
- Violent protests have broken out
in the town of Abadan in south-west Iran over a lack of
The protests were triggered by a severe heatwave, in
which temperatures have soared to 53C, and which have led to the water supply being cut
- Severe storms in the Philippines have left at least 12
dead and forced 80,000 to flee their homes.
The five days of heavy rains were caused by typhoon Kirogi and a tropical
depression, later to become typhoon Kai-Tek.
- High temperatures
seared southeastern Europe, the hottest day for most of
the region in a heat wave that has left
at least 23 dead and sent thermometers
climbing to 113F in Greece. In
Romania, where temperatures reached
109F, nine people were
confirmed dead due to the heat, most
of them farmers working in fields west
of Bucharest. Bulgaria, Greece,
Macedonia and Bosnia also reported heat-related deaths on Thursday. The
entire southeastern region of the continent has been gripped by a high
pressure area that has sent temperatures rocketing and broken
century-old records. Average daytime temperatures for much of the
Balkans normally range between 86-95F. Arid conditions have
also sparked forest fires, with major blazes in Greece and Italy.
- Flooding from the opening weeks of China's rainy season has
caused more than 410 deaths and local governments were being warned
to prepare for more floods.
In the latest catastrophe, torrential rains washed away a
mountainside, killing ten people in Dazhou city, Sichuan providence.
The rains have
caused $16 million in losses. While rains have begun falling on some
parts of drought-stricken north China, many areas remain parched. The
dry weather has contributed to unusually large hatches of locusts.
- High temperatures and a long
spell of dry weather have killed 40 people and damaged
some crops in Croatia this week. The interior ministry reported eight forest fires blazing in
various places along Croatia's Adriatic coast, wiping out
large areas of shrub and pine trees.
- Typhoon Kai-Tak wreaked havoc in the
northern Philippines, leaving 26 people dead and more than
700,000 homeless, relief officials said.
- Intense temperatures of well over 40C
that has left dozens of deaths in southeast
Europe eased. Strong northerly winds began cooling Greece, including
Athens, where temperatures on Thursday (6th) reached 44.4C.
- Power went out for several hours in
sweltering Nicosia when the electricity grid failed to cope
with a surge in demand as people switched on their air conditioners
amid soaring temperatures. The Electricity Authority said it had
received a record demand for power as the capital sizzled under
temperatures of 43C in the shade.
- At De Bilt in the Netherlands the pressure fell
to 987.5 mbar - equalling the lowest ever July pressure
recorded there on 11th July 1894.
- A typhoon that left a
trail of death in the Philippines
pummeled eastern Japan,
killing three people, flooding cities,
snapping power lines and burying
homes in landslides.
After traveling up Japan's Pacific coast,
Typhoon Kirogi headed for Hachinohe,
a city 300 miles north of Tokyo on
Japan's main island of Honshu.
Residents of Mito, northeast of Tokyo, trudged knee-deep through
torrents of muddy water that raced down streets and lapped
- In Ukraine, the Chernobyl nuclear power station has
been forced to shut down after being flooded by heavy
- A prolonged heat wave has
provided the fuel for numerous wildfires in
Greece. More than 50 people have died
throughout the region since last week - killed
by everything from heatstroke to drowning or
falling off roofs while trying to cool off.
- At least 42 people
died and 38 were injured when part of
a hill loosened by monsoon rain
collapsed on unauthorized slums. The tin and
mud huts built into a hillside that
overlooks a road in eastern Bombay
were smashed late on Wednesday when
the mud loosened due to the heavy
downpour since earlier in the previous
24 hours. The annual monsoon rain has
crippled transport services, with
clogged drains causing flooding of
roads and railroad tracks throughout
India's largest city.
Forest fires on the Indonesian island of Sumatra
are increasing, but officials on Monday played down the possibility of a repeat of
Southeast Asia's smog crisis of 1997.
That smog started to disperse on Monday, although health concerns remained.
Plantation firms in northern Riau province, near the border with North Sumatra
and not far from Singapore and Malaysia, were to blame for the fresh outbreaks.
- 11 people died in Canada's worst
tornado in 13 years,
at a lakeside trailer park in Alberta.
At least 130 people were injured, many of them treated for glass cuts and
lacerations from flying debris, others hurt after being tossed into the lake in their
The twister was rated as an F-3 tornado on a scale of zero to five, with five being
the most severe.
Alberta experiences an average of 16-20 tornadoes a year but most are considered
weak. A F-4 tornado killed 27 people and injured 300 in the provincial capital of
Edmonton in 1987.
- For the fifth day in a row, temperatures 6 to 8C above normal have occurred over a wide area
of Central and Western Australia. Today, records for July top temperatures were
broken at Roebourne (33.6C) and Pannawonica (32.0C) in Western Australia's north as both day and
night time temperatures stayed at levels more usual in mid autumn or spring. The unusual
spell of warmth has been caused by a prolonged stream of northwesterly winds over the
northern half of Western Australia.
- At least eight people have been killed by a week of
temperatures above 100F in Texas and neighboring states.
Un relenting sun has prompted the National Weather Service to issue heat advisories for much
of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Louisiana and Mississippi.
Heat-related deaths were reported in Houston; Dallas; Austin, Texas; and
Shreveport, Louisiana. Several of the victims were elderly shut-ins who had no
air conditioners or could not afford the electricity to keep the units running.
In Dallas, health officials declared a heat emergency triggered by six consecutive
days of temperatures over 100F.
- France's Burgundy grape crop is developing several days
ahead of schedule, despite the rain and low temperatures which have made for the
country's coldest July in 20 years.
Hail storms during the first weekend of the month have nonetheless caused
important damage in selected regions, in particular around Givry, affecting wines
such as Clos Salomon and Cellier aux Moines, among others.
- Sixty million people have been affected by a
severe drought in Central and South Asia that has killed livestock and
crops and threatens to uproot families as they look for food and water. Earlier this week the World Food
Program appealed to donors for $55.4 million to help some of the
estimated 3 million to 4 million Afghans most seriously affected by the
drought - the worst Afghanistan has experienced in three decades.
Other countries most at
risk include Tajikistan, where U.N. assessments indicate wheat
production this year will be off 30%. Parts of Pakistan are experiencing
the worst drought in the country's history. Iran estimates that 60% of
the rural population in the 18 provinces most affected - and another 12
million people elsewhere - are experiencing shortages of potable water.
- A thin blanket of smog from forest fires in
Indonesia has reached southern Thailand but the air pollution is unlikely to get
as bad as in other Southeast Asian countries, officials said.
In the first reports of smoke haze in almost three years, the Thai meteorological
office said air quality and visibility had deteriorated in the southern provinces of
Songkhla, Narathiwat, Yala and Pattani over the last week.
- Water levels in the Mekong River in
Cambodia have reached their highest in 40 years, displaced hundreds of families
and destroyed crops.
Hundreds had been forced to move by the rising waters and thousands of
hectares of rice and other crops were being destroyed.
Parts of Central Sweden are severely affected by flooding after recent heavy
rain - worst hit is the province of Halsingland. Sections of roads and some
bridges have been washed away by swollen rivers - on Thursday 35 roads in the area
were closed. Troops have been called in to distribute sandbags. Trains to the
area from the south have been suspended because the tracks have been undermined.
Ange - a small town between Sundsvall and Trondheim - is completely cut off.
- Landslides in northern Vietnam
province have killed 20 people, including seven children.
Twenty-two people have been injured in the landslides during the
past few days.
Official media reported earlier that up to 300 mm of
rain fell in the area on Sunday.
- Floods from heavy and prolonged monsoon
rains have triggered flooding throughout southern India. The Godavari
River has inundated low-lying parts of the Khammam district of
Andhra Pradesh state, forcing officials to evacuated 20,000 people to
safety. At least 200,000 people and 50 villages have been affected by
flooding that has swamped roads under five feet of water, uprooted
trees and disrupted communication links.
- Heavy rain Sweden this month has already led to July rainfall records being broken. At Hoglekarden 304mm exceeds the previous record of 274mm in 1993, while at Sveg 224mm is the greatest July total since 1875. Other totals include 215mm at Ostersund and 196mm at Orebro.
- A NASA study of Greenland's ice sheet reveals that it is rapidly thinning. In an article published in the July 21 issue of Science, Bill Krabill, project
scientist at the NASA Goddard Space Flight Center's Wallops Flight Facility, Wallops Island, VA, reports that the frozen area around Greenland is
thinning, in some places, at a rate of more than three feet per year. Any change is important since a smaller ice sheet could result in higher sea
"A conservative estimate, based on our data, indicates a net loss of approximately 51 cubic kilometers of ice per year from the entire ice sheet,
sufficient to raise global sea level by 0.005 inches per year, or approximately seven percent of the observed rise," Krabill said.
- Brazil's 2001/02 (July/June) coffee crop
may reach no more than 25.9 million 60-kg bags, sharply down from its
potential, after drought and frost damaged vulnerable trees.
- In Cambodia severe floods, which
have been wreaking havoc across the country since early July, have left as many as 15
dead and caused more than $6 million in damage.
- Floods and mudslides caused by
torrential rain have killed at least 8 people in northeastern
Brazil over the last two days and made more than 1,000 homeless.
Four people died in Recife, the capital of coastal Pernambuco state,
and another four in the neighboring city of Olinda. Television
showed hillside shacks being swept away by tonnes of mud and
whole districts flooded with water.
World weather news, August 2000
- Following the outstanding warmth of the early summer, July was an
extremely dismal month across Germany. Mean temperature anomalies
were widely below -2 C. Munich had its coldest July since 1980, after
having had its hottest June for 50 years. Sunshine totals in July were
especially low. In Berlin, only 103 hours of sun were recorded, 47of normal, easily the cloudiest July on record. Meanwhile, in the Harz
region, less than a third of normal sunshine was recorded.
- Rescue workers searched for bodies
after a flooded river Sutlej submerged villages near India's mountainous
border with Tibet, washing away 1,000 houses and drowning at least
107 people. Workers were having trouble in rescue efforts due to the
persistent rain, which also flooded several government offices, houses, and private hotels. Police and officials added that the death toll
was likely to rise once water recedes from the roads and rescue
workers reach the villages.
- 9mm fell in 6h at Izana, Tenerife; the monthly average is just 13mm.
- Torrential rains that killed 57 people in Brazil's
impoverished northeast and made over 150,000 flee their homes in the past five days,
stopped or weakened on Thursday.The region's worst deluge in 25 years, according to officials, submerged entire towns in
water, triggered mudslides that destroyed scores of hillside shacks and forced residents
to camp in makeshift shelters in schools, hospitals and gymnasiums.
In Pernambuco, 21 people had been killed mainly by mudslides and over
73,000 people had been forced to abandon their homes.
The press service for Alagoas state, where 36 people died and 90,000 were evacuated, said
the situation was stable, with water levels in overflooded rivers subsiding.
- Heavy monsoon rain flooded hundreds of
villages in northern Bangladesh, killing at least four people and leaving
hundreds of thousands of people homeless, the government said
Sunday. At least 100,000 people were marooned in the worst-hit
districts of Kurigram, Gaibandha and Lalmonirhat, 150 miles north of
Dhaka, the Bangladesh capital, the flood control ministry said.
- A flash flood hit a group of elementary school students and
their chaperones on a hiking trip in the mountains of northern Japan,
killing a 55-year-old man and injuring six other adults. Heavy rains early Sunday caused the Yubiso River at the foot
of Mount Tanigawa to swell, touching off mudslides, said local police
spokesman Kaoru Tashiro.
- Torrential rains triggered flash floods and
mudslides in South Asia, leaving about 170 people dead and millions
homeless. Over 2.5 million people have been
affected by floods in eastern India and neighboring Bhutan over the past
few days. At least 11 high-rise buildings in Tala collapsed because of
the unprecedented flash floods. Across the southern border, in India's
northeastern Assam state, the death toll rose to 80 from drowning or
disease, government officials said. In India's eastern state of Bihar, the
army and the air force worked to provide relief to more than 1,000
villages where at least 1.6 million people have been affected by the
surging flood waters. The floods also submerged a large part of the
Kaziranga National Park in India, home to 1,600 one-horned rhinos and
hundreds of elephants.
- Heavy rain submerged more of northeastern India
on Wednesday and two of the nation's largest rivers crested over their
banks, killing 116 people and leaving 4.9 million homeless. The Ganges
and Brahmaputra rivers were rising and expected to remain high above
the danger levels for the next several days. At least 40 people have died
in the last four weeks from waterborne diseases brought on by the high
water. Hundreds of others, including children and elderly people in
relief camps, were suffering from dysentery, diarrhea and other
waterborne diseases. The flooding water has washed away roads and
bridge, cutting off communication in many districts.
- Typhoon Jelawat, which pounded Japan's
southern island of Okinawa earlier this week,
is on a collison for the southeast China coast.
The typhoon, with winds of 80 mph Thursday
afternoon, Asian time, is forecast to slam into
the China coast south of Shanghai late on
Friday, Asian time. The typhoon will likely
bring battering waves, strong winds and
flooding rains to coast.
- The National Hurricane Center
lowered its yearly Atlantic estimate on Thursday,
predicting not eight but seven hurricanes are likely to
brew during the 2000 season.
The season, relatively quiet so far this year, runs from
June to November and usually hits its stride in
But cool equatorial waters along the Africa-Caribbean
hurricane belt, a diminished La Nina weather system and
a large vertical wind shear off Africa's coast lessened the
likelihood of strong storms, NHC meteorologist Chris
- Alberto, the first hurricane of the Atlantic season, continued
its northwesterly course over open ocean early Thursday, one day after
returning to hurricane strength.
At 5 a.m. EDT, Alberto was about 710 miles southeast of Bermuda and
moving northwest at 21 mph. Later in the week, Alberto is expected to
swing northward and pass well east of Bermuda, forecasters said.
- Hundreds of
homes are still inundated by flood
waters more than a week after
heavy flooding in Russia's Far East,
emergency officials say.
In the Lesozavodsk district alone
some 2,000 houses are flooded.
Floodwaters subsided by Thursday in southern parts of the Primorye
region, but remain high in northern districts, where several towns and
villages are battling floodwaters, said Zalyotov.
The flood, caused by heavy rains and a typhoon in the Pacific Ocean at
the end of July, are reported to have damaged 9,211 homes, washed out
196 bridges and downed 253 kilometres (157 miles) of power and
- For the first time in 50 million years, visitors to the
North Pole can see something extraordinary: water.
The thick ice that covers the Arctic Ocean at the North Pole has melted,
leaving a mile-wide (1.6-kilometer-wide) stretch of water at the top of
the world. Two recent visitors to the poles spoke about the unexpected
The water could be the result of global warming, although there is a
debate among experts about the cause. Some believe it could simply be a
natural occurrence rather than the result of a "greenhouse effect" caused
by manmade pollution and increased concentrations of carbon dioxide in
Scientists have said that the last time the North Pole had this much
water was 50 million years ago.
- Typhoon Bilis uprooted trees and triggered landslides that
destroyed a railway and wrecked more than 1,000 homes in coastal
China, officials said Thursday. Bilis, which killed 11 people in
Taiwan earlier, unleashed destructive winds and rain
throughout southeast China's Fujian province. Luckily, no
casualities were reported. In Jinjiang city and the provincial
capital Fuzhou, strong winds and heavy rain caused flooding,
uprooted thousands of trees, damaged fishing boats and wrecked
numerous dwellings. Economic losses are estimated to exceed 60 million dollars.
On Tuesday, Bilis pushed across Taiwan. Some 98,000 acres of
rice paddies and orchards were flooded in Taiwan.
- Sixty-five people have died in floods
following two days of heavy rain in the southern Indian state of Andhra
Pradesh, the state's chief minister said on Thursday.
Chief Minister Chandrababu Naidu told state legislators the situation
was grim in three districts - Guntur, Prakasam and Kurnool. Five
people were still missing.
About 300 are feared to have died in flooding that has hit north and
northeast India, Bhutan, Nepal and Bangladesh during the current
monsoon season leaving millions homeless, hungry and prey to disease.
- Gusting winds have dropped off, helping
firefighters contain major blazes that killed seven people and razed
dozens of homes in Greece this week, authorities said Saturday. Fire
chief Panagiotis Fourlas said firefighters had gained the upper hand at
the Albanian border and in southern Arcadia province, the scenes of the
worst destruction. Following an appeal for international assistance, a
60-member fire crew from Israel joined the effort Saturday. Greece has
had its worst fire season in decades this summer. Hundreds of fires
have broken out around the country, helped by successive heat waves
and strong winds. Up to 370,500 acres of forest have been blackened.
Seven people were killed in northern Greece on Thursday and Friday,
bringing the summer death toll to 12. Fourlas said he expected hot and
windy weather conditions to continue in September.
- A history-making drought in North Texas has all the
signs of continuing for days - or even weeks - and the rain forecast
elsewhere in the state isn't much better.
With no precipitation in the forecast Monday, the record of 58
onsecutive days without rain in the region - first set in 1934 - was
A rainless Sunday tied the record, which had been repeated in 1950.
- Satellite data from above
Antarctica show an unusually early and severe drop in
the level of ozone, the World Meteorological
Organization said on Tuesday.
The United Nations agency said an average drop of 30
percent was recorded compared to the benchmark
1964-76 period, before a hole in the protective ozone
layer was reported.
But it said meteorological conditions in the stratosphere
could change and it was too soon to say if there would
be record depletion of the layer this year.
- Firefighters said yesterday they had brought under control blazes which have ravaged at least 9,000 hectares of
woodland over the past week on the Mediterranean island of Corsica. With smoke rising from the ashes of forests and bush across the holiday
island, some 1,000 firefighters kept watch over areas where winds risked re-igniting the fires. Tanker planes prepared to make their final flights to
douse any lingering flames.
Firefighters said almost 2,500 hectares (6,100 acres) were destroyed in the scenic forest of Restonica, near the central town of Corte, while 4,800
hectares (11,900 acres) went up in smoke in the area of Vivario and Ghisoni. Fires swept across 1,600 hectares (4,000 acres) around the island's
capital Ajaccio. They said many of the blazes started simultaneously, a sign that arsonists were to blame.
- Italy's grape pickers worked the latest in a slate of 12- to
15-hour days Wednesday to complete the earliest wine harvest in
memory, hurried along by a torrid summer that threatens to turn the
crop to raisins on the vine.
July rains followed by two weeks in the high 90s (30s C) could make for a
great year of high-alcohol, full-bodied wine - or a harvest of shame, if
the grapes aren't in soon.
- Typhoon Prapiroon killed four
people and injured more than 80 as it brushed past
China's eastern province of Jiangsu, state media reported
The typhoon caused heavy flooding in the province,
submerging more than 364,000 hectares of farmland and
damaging some 7,500 houses, the official Shanghai Daily
An official at the Jiangsu Flood-Control Headquarters
told Reuters there was heavy damage in some districts
but he declined to confirm the casualty reports.
Rain swept Jiangsu province for 24 hours before ending
on Thursday morning, the official Xinhua news agency
said. It also reported the storm left four dead and more
than 80 injured, but gave no details.
- Volunteers have evacuated some 12,000
residents to cyclone shelters after floods deluged an island town, Red Crescent officials here said Thursday.
High tides from the Bay of Bengal put Sandwip island's main town four to five feet (12 to 15 metres) under water.
More than 1,000 homes had been flooded, and that number was rising, Red Crescent's regional chief Golam Rabbani told AFP.
Sandwip is one of the largest of Bangladesh's islands in the Bay of Bengal with a population of more than 362,000.
Weather officials said islands in the Bay of Bengal were gripped by high tides caused by monsoon clouds, and warned all fishing boats to return to their bases.
- Thirty-one people have died in floods in the
northern Indian state of Uttar Pradesh, officials said Thursday as rivers receded in
southern Andhra Pradesh state, ravaged by the worst floods in 46 years.
Uttar Pradesh officials said major rivers were in spate in the sprawling province
adjoining the Indian capital and added that relief and rescue operations were underway.
They said the 31 died in the past 48 hours in eight flooded Uttar Pradesh districts.
The latest deaths have taken the flood-related death toll in Uttar Pradesh to 226 since
the onset of the monsoon in June, a state government spokesman said by telephone
from the provincial capital of Lucknow.
Parts of Uttar Pradesh, India's most populous state, are in the grip of a harsh drought,
At least 140 people also died earlier this month in flash-floods which devastated the
northern summer resort state of Himachal Pradesh, which adjoins Uttar Pradesh.
World weather news, September 2000
- Very hot weather in S parts of the USA led to many record high temperatures for the date being set, including Salina, KS 110F,
Dallas, TX 109F,
Wichita Falls, TX 108F,
Wichita, LA 108F,
- A NASA spectrometer has detected an Antarctic ozone "hole" (what
scientists call an "ozone depletion area") that is three times
larger than the entire land mass of the United States - the
largest such area ever observed.
The "hole" expanded to a record size of approximately 11 million
square miles (28.3 million square kilometers) on Sept. 3, 2000.
The previous record was approximately 10.5 million square miles
(27.2 million square km) on Sept. 19, 1998.
- Hundreds of search and
rescue teams combed a campground for the
disabled, where a rain-swollen stream
swept 12 people to their deaths. Authorities say
at least four others are missing and 22 others
hospitalized, after mud and water washed over
the campground flipping over cars and shoving
trailers into trees. The campground was filled
with disabled people vacationing with their
volunteer aides. Environmentalists questioned
building a campground near a stream and Italian
lawmakers began investigating, to determine if
any laws had been violated.
- Five people have been killed and hundreds of thousands forced from their homes as Japan's
heaviest rains on record soaked the country.
Authorities in the major city of Nagoya ordered
about 363,985 people to move to public facilities or
other safe places as the country's biggest carmaker
Toyota Motor Corp was forced to stop production.
About 50,000 passengers were forced to sleep
overnight at railway stations or in trains that
ground to a halt. Services resumed in the afternoon after a
record interruption of more than 18 hours.
Television footage showed residents wading
waist-deep in muddy water and children navigating
flooded streets in rubber inner-tubes. Troops in
rowboats paddled past inundated buses to rescue
Winds of 89 mph are also churning close to the
coast of Okinawa and lashing areas of southern Japan
with powerful gusts.
A tornado has also swept through a residential
area in central Tokyo, destroying the roofs of several
homes, police said. There were no reports of injuries.
- Boulevards became muddy rivers and hundreds of thousands
of people were ordered to evacuate Tuesday as torrential rain soaked
central Japan, killing at least six people. Rainfall totaling 23 inches was
recorded in Tokai, near Nagoya, over the past 24-hour period, the local
observatory said. More than 360,000 people to evacuate their homes in
Nagoya, many of whom sought shelter on the second or third floors of
schools. Nagoya-based Toyota Motor Corp. stopped production
nationwide because of the relentless downpour, a company
- Typhoon Saomai forced hundreds of people to evacuate their homes in
China's coastal Zhejiang province, local authorities said on Wednesday
Sept. 13). At 7 p.m. local time, the typhoon was about 310 miles east of the
city of Shanghai, and city officials issued a typhoon warning.
- Rain from the seasonal monsoon and tropical storms
are causing floods across much of the Southeast Asia. The floods, which
have killed nearly 100 people in the region, have forced 600,000 people
from their homes in Cambodia, Vietnam and Laos. In Cambodia, the
level of the Mekong River flowing through the capital city of Phnom
Penh is at its highest in more than 70 years. The Cambodia director of
the Red Cross and Red Crescent federation says that 500,000 people need
emergency assistance such as clothes, food, plastic sheets and blankets.
Another 100,000 people require similar aid in Vietnam. The heavy rain
began in July, 45 days ahead of the normal monsoon. Despite the
widespread rains, only 2% of Vietnam's rice crops were destroyed
because of an early harvest.
- A 4,000-acre wildfire in Santa Barbara County, California, burned parts of
Vandenberg Air Force Base on Wednesday (Sept. 14). About 150 residents
from the nearby town of Casmalia were evacuated.
- More than 26,000 old people die from the cold weather in London
each year more than Finland which is twice as cold.
The death rate from cold in Britain is higher than Finland, the
Netherlands, Germany, Italy and Greece.
Every winter 26,596 elderly people die in London alone 3,129 in
every million compared to 2,457 per million in northern Finland.
Professor William Keatinge, who conducted the research, said:
`People in cold regions of Europe take more effective protective
measures against a standard degree of cold than people in warm
- In a torrential downpour 200 mm rain fell in Marseille between 17.00 and 23.00
local time - including 90 mm between 17.00 and 18.30 and 80 mm
between 19.00 and 20.30.
Many streets were flooded and the Old Harbour in the city centre overflowed. The
fire services were inundated with calls for help and the electricity supply failed
in parts of the central area. Two people were killed in road accidents.
In Montpellier 3 people were killed and 7 injured when 3 building cranes fell during a
thunderstorm accompanied by wind gusts of over 100 km/hr.
- At least eight people have died and thousands have been
left homeless by storms which have lashed both the east
and west coasts of Mexico.
The civil protection agency has declared alerts along the
coast of the western state of Michoacan, where hundreds
of people have been evacuated.
In the southern state of Chiapas, two adults and two
children were killed when they were buried under
falling mud and rocks, unleashed by the rains.
Meanwhile in the east of Mexico, heavy rainfall has
caused rivers to overflow in areas which suffered heavy
flood damage a year ago.
- One minute before midnight on the 23rd, enough drops had fallen in a rain gauge at the
Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport to register 1/100th of an inch - the only measurable
rainfall the official rain gauge had taken since June 30. Those few drops, and the showers that
followed on Sunday, officially ended North Texas' record dry spell. The streak had shattered
the previous record of 58 days set during the dust bowl in 1934 and reached again in 1950.
snowstorm that had earlier
blanketed most of Wyoming (USA) severely hit on Cheyenne over the
weekend, setting a record for snow
fall so early in the autumn, before
moving through Colorado and into
Wyoming's capital recorded 10.5
inches of snow, though the
accumulation was fleeting.
Throughout Sunday, clumps of snow fell from sun-warmed trees and
roofs and all but a couple of inches melted away.
- Floodwaters in Vietnam's upper Mekong Delta are continuing to rise at a
rate of 5-15 cm a day, and are now only 5-10 cm below the levels recorded
during the catastrophic 1961 floods. The Dong Thap, An Giang, Long An, Kien
Giang and Can Tho provinces are all completely flooded.
While water levels in central and northern Cambodia are beginning to
recede, water levels in Vietnam are expected to continue to rise in the next
few days. Some Vietnamese officials fear that water levels may not peak
until early October and high water levels are likely to persist into late October.
Many families may not be able to return to their homes until November or
- More than 700 people have died in India and Bangladesh since
September 18 as late monsoon rains pushed water over river banks and
dams, erasing the tree-lined frontier. More than 10 million people in
eastern India are homeless, and 125,000 in Bangladesh.
Most of the dead, 652, have been in India.
In Bangladesh there are fears the toll will rise from sickness and
- The UN's World Food Programme announced a major emergency operation intended to help more than one
million people in Tajikistan threatened by famine because of one of the worst droughts
in decades in central Asia.
The drought comes at a time when regional food supplies are strained, severe financial
restaints are limiting the Tajik government's capacity to purchase grain on the
international market, and the price of wheat in Kazakhstan - the main regional grain
exporter - has risen by 15 percent since last year.
- Authorities declared a state of
emergency in Italy's southern region of
Calabria after rain triggered
flooding and mudslides. Authorities
evacuated 400 people from homes in the
town of Bovalino, one of several
villages in the region fully or partially
isolated by the rains and mud. No
injuries were immediately reported.
Rain caused trouble across much of
northern and central Italy as well Saturday, with a record 14 inches of
rain in 24 hours reported in the Piedmont region. High water flooded
St. Mark's Piazza in Venice.
World weather news, October 2000
- Finland was at least very close to new October record.
Temperatures of 18-19C were reported. The absolute October
temperature record for whole Finland is 19.4C (Helsinki-Malmi
- Hurricane Keith battered the
Yucatan Peninsula and Belize with
torrential rain, damaging winds and
storm surge while remaining
nearly stationary off the coast. Since
encountering land on Sunday, Keith has
slowly weakened with top steady
winds decreasing to 75 mph.
Deadly flash floods and mudslides are
possible in the Yucatan Peninsula and
Belize in addition to Honduras and
eastern Mexico where up to 20 inches
rain are possible. Already more than 14 inches of rain has been reported
at the Belize Airport according to a statement issued by the National
Hurricane Center in Miami.
- The death toll from devastating floods in western Bangladesh
exceeded 100 as grim reports poured in Monday of tens of thousands of marooned
people waiting to be rescued.
There were 30 flood-related deaths in the worst-hit
Jhenaidah and Chuadanga areas during nearly two weeks of unprecedented floods in
10 western districts bordering India.
Reports of deaths from boats capsizing, snakebites and a lack of medical
attention were pouring in from the flooded areas, where hundreds of unfed and
marooned people were being exposed to water-borne diseases.
- Hurricane Keith continues to batter most of Central
America including Belize where it appears to have
caused its most serious damage.
The devastating storm toppled wooden houses and
ripped the roofs off hotels in Belize.
Reports from Nicaragua say ten people have been killed
by flooding caused by a hurricane affecting much of
The authorities said most of the victims drowned as they
tried to cross swollen rivers.
In neighbouring Guatemala, a young girl was also
- The pounding rains from a tropical storm flooded homes and
streets and forced schools and businesses in Florida to shut down early. Thousands of
residents were left without power.
The storm, which started as a disturbed weather system over Cuba, dumped
up to 11.5 inches of rain in some parts of Miami-Dade County over a 15-hour
Numerous flights were cancelled at Miami International Airport.
According to National Weather Service meteorologist Joel Rothfuss, the
deluge was comparable to Hurricane Irene, which last October dumped up
to 18 inches of rain on south Florida, causing millions of dollars in damage.
- As the death toll mounted along Vietnam's
deluged Mekong Delta, officials said an unexpected flash
flood killed at least 40 people in a remote mountain village of Lai Chauin the
Lai Chau has been hit by flash floods in recent years.
The flood, which occurred earlier in the
week, destroyed several houses, injured 17
people and caused subsequent landslides.
Elsewhere in Asia, flooding has claimed more than 1,000 lives and left
more than 20 million people homeless in Bangladesh and India.
Meanwhile, scores of others have been killed or marooned by flooding
in Cambodia, Laos and Thailand. Many of the victims have been
afflicted with diseases - including scabies, typhoid and dysentery.
The floods have destroyed rice fields in 29 of Laos' districts, most of
which would have been harvested later this year.
Vietnamese officials said that two new threats
faced the nation's flood victims -
the spread of cholera and
crocodiles swimming down river from Cambodia.
- The hole in the ozone layer over Antarctica has stretched over a
populated city for the first time, after ballooning to a new record
size, New Zealand scientists said.
Citing data from the US space agency Nasa, atmospheric research
scientist Stephen Wood said the hole covered 11.4 million square
miles an area more than three times the size of the United
For two days, September 9-10, the hole extended over the southern
Chile city of Punta Arenas, exposing residents to very high levels of
ultra violet radiation.
Last month, scientists expressed surprise when NASA data from
September 3 showed the hole at just under 11 million square miles
the biggest it had ever been.
Record-low temperatures in the stratosphere are believed to have
helped the expansion of the ozone hole during the southern
hemisphere's spring season.
- President Bill Clinton admitted he felt ``a little jinxed'' when he
became a victim of the torrential downpours that have flooded
First his bomb proof stretched limousine refused to start after he
had attended a rally in Jacksonville.
A secret service agent attempted to breath life into the engine
with jump leads and when that failed Clinton used a back-up car.
The president too was soaked by the non stop rainfall and then
missed attending a Democratic fund raiser when Air Force One, the
presidential jumbo jet, was grounded in Florida by the weather.
Up to 18 inches of rain has fallen in Florida this week.
Florida's record for the greatest amount of rainfall in a 24 hour
period is 38.7 inches which fell on Yankeetown in 1950.
- Weather related disasters should be a warning sign to the world's
leaders that climate change threatens the livelihoods of millions of
people, says a report issued today by the Friends of the Earth
Severe events have included storms in Taiwan, Brazil and Canada,
and flooding in Bangladesh, Japan, Vietnam and India.
There have also been fires in the US, Italy and the Balkans, and
droughts in Burundi, Croatia, Kenya and Iran.
The environmental group said that no individual disaster could be
directly blamed on man-made climate change.
But scientists believe that the number of such events will rise as
the effects of climate change are felt.
- The worst flood in the Cambodia's history
has caused \$79 million in damage. The
flood has affected more than 2.7 million people and nearly half of which
are in urgent need of food, housing and medicine. In all, 252 people died
in the flooding. 430 miles of national roads and bridges, and
925 miles of rural roads were destroyed or seriously damaged.
More than 741,000 acres of rice paddies were
destroyed. The Mekong River has been receding gradually for a week
but most parts of southeastern Cambodia remain submerged.
- Clear skies under a high pressure system caused several record low October temperatures this morning in the southeast of Australia, with late
frosts causing concern over frost damage to crops in Victoria's northwest. Nhill recorded a minimum of -2.0,C equal to its previous lowest
October minimum in 38 years of computerised records. This followed a minimum of -1.6C on Monday morning. Laverton Airport, between
Melbourne and Geelong, had its coldest October morning in 57 years with a minimum of zero. Local agronomists fear that some crops may have
suffered damage. Field peas in the Hopetoun area of western Victoria appear the worst affected with damage rates between 15 and 75%. In South
Australia, Parafield, north of Adelaide, broke a 38 year record with a minimum on 1.6C while Swan Island, off the northeastern coast of Tasmania,
recorded a record low of 4.3C. Widespread light snow was reported across Tasmania overnight, with falls as low as Maydena in the upper Derwent
Valley, and at Lake Leake in the northeastern highlands.
- A ferocious storm created havoc in Canterbury (New Zealand) today as many
residents faced evacuation, thousands experienced power cuts,
and road closures cut off access to outlying Banks Peninsula
Many Christchurch roads and all city parks were also
closed because of danger from trees toppling in the saturated
Residents in Eketahuna were being advised to boil drinking water
until Monday after the area's worst floods in 50 years.
- Heavy rains in southern Brazil swept away
houses and flooded cities, killing at least six people and driving more
than 5,000 from their homes, civil defense officials said Saturday. The
rain, which began last Wednesday, lashed 33 cities and rural towns in
Rio Grande do Sul state. The government and private groups distributed food and
supplies to victims. Although the rain stopped Saturday and flood
waters began to recede, weather forecasts predicted more rain in the
area over the weekend.
- Some high rainfall totals in SE France on Friday night and Saturday.
24 hrs to 18.00 GMT on Saturday - Marseille 50 mm, Bastia on Corsica 57 mm,
Montelimar 88 mm.
Montelimar already had 30 mm in the previous 12 hrs - total thus 118 mm in 36
24 hrs to 06.00 GMT on Saturday - Le Puy 46 mm, Orange 88 mm.
12 hrs to 06.00 GMT on Saturday - Carpentras 70 mm, Bec de l'Aigle 110 mm.
At Nice and Antibes warm air from the south caused a rise in temperature from 19°C
at 22.00 on Friday evening to 22°C at midnight.
- Flash flooding has claimed the lives of 47 people in
Vietnam in the past 10 days. Storms this past
weekend have left villages in Cambodia knee-deep in water. Since July,
the death toll in Vietnam from massive flooding has risen to 463 as a
result of tropical storms and flash floods. Floods claimed 31 lives in
central Vietnam, where the rains have since stopped and waters have
dropped to near normal levels, officials said. Sixteen more died in four
southern coastal provinces.
- 11 individuals died on Monday as
temperatures in northern Kyrgyzstan fell below zero. According to meteorologists a cold cyclone
from Siberia and Kazakhstan has been hitting the northland and capital city Bishkek with heavy
snowfall. On Monday, the highest temperature was just 2 degrees Celsius during the day. The average temperature in the country in October is
- Rescuers were resuming their searches across Switzerland and Italy
today for at least 21 people missing after a weekend of mudslides and
Seven people were missing in the Val D'Aosta region of Italy, one
of the hardest hit by the rains, as a state of emergency was declared
in the worst-hit areas. The death toll has now reached 10.
In Switzerland, rescuers with sniffer dogs combed the mountain
village of Gondo, a third of which was destroyed in a landslide on
Saturday. Twelve people are missing, feared dead.
In the Italian city of Turin, the Dora Baltea river burst its banks
overnight, flooding several of the city's main streets with about 20
inches of water and mud. At least 250 people were evacuated from
The Caselle airport was also shut down, while the road connecting
Piedmont and Lombardy was cut off.
The Rhone river receded slightly as the rain eased today. But much
of the Swiss state was still cut off by road, and rail links were
expected to remain closed for several days.
On the other side of the Alps, Lake Maggiore was at its highest
level in a century.
- Nearly 15,000 people were evacuated
in the northern Italian plains
Tuesday as two raging rivers -
the Po, Italy's longest river, and
the Ticino that feeds into it
from the Alps - took aim on
- Floods in southwest Bangladesh
inundated new areas, damaging or
destroying homes in nearly two
"New areas are being flooded with
water released from other areas
after the army had cut through
dykes and roads," said Bhabesh Chanda, a local administrator in
worst-hit Satkhira district.
The floods, which struck usually dry
southwest in the last week of September,
have killed more than 130 people, left over
two million homeless and caused huge losses
to the impoverished nation's economy
- Late-season Hurricane Michael slammed
into southern Newfoundland late Thursday, knocking down power
lines, disrupting ferry service and damaging homes. The hurricane
evolved into an extratropical storm and weakened as it moved inland.
Forecasters said it was packing winds of 85 mph late Thursday, down
from almost 100 mph - Category 2 hurricane intensity -earlier in the
day when it was still over the Atlantic. On land, winds blew at a
measured 80 mph, forecasters said, stripping siding from homes in Seal
Cove. Nearby, the village of McCallum bore the brunt of the storm. No
injuries have been reported so far. Michael was the 13th named storm of
this year's Atlantic hurricane season; eight have been hurricanes. The average year has 10
named storms and six hurricanes.
- The flood death
toll in Italy and Switzerland rose to 37
Saturday after search teams found
another body. Several people are still
missing and at least 23,000 people are
still unable to return to their homes. On
Saturday, the water level of the Po was reported to be dropping by
about two inches an hour. In Comacchio, where the Po empties into the
Adriatic, animal carcasses, tree trunks, and other flood debris clogged
the port, hindering navigation. Damage to roads, bridges and tunnels
have snarled traffic in much of the affected region. In some areas,
however, life was slowly returning to normal.
- Thick fog, strong winds
and rain threatened to curtail operations to
recover the bodies of 118 sailors inside the sunken
Russian nuclear submarine Kursk. A cold front
was forecast for late Sunday, raising the
possibility of gale force winds in the Barents Sea
that could complicate the work of divers in the
- Thunderstorms continued to soak West Texas and eastern New
Mexico during the evening, after Sunday thunderstorms reportedly
produced flooding and at least one tornado.
Parts of Edwards and Real counties flooded after as much as six and a
half inches of rain fell on Monday.
Storms stretching across the Texas Panhandle Monday afternoon
produced a tornado near the eastern edge of Amarillo. No injuries
workers searched for several people
believed to be missing after their
trailers were swept away by fierce
flooding in two western Arizona (USA) towns.
Hundreds of people were forced to
evacuate the neighbouring towns of
Wenden and Salome after a little more
than an inch of rain triggered major
flooding on Sunday. Witnesses saw at
least two people carried away in a torrent
- At least five people have been killed and three are
missing in floods that have been sweeping through
eastern Spain since the weekend.
Rescuers have been using helicopters and mechanical
diggers to reach people trapped near the River Ebro in
Catalonia, one of the regions worst affected by storms
and torrential rain.
Towns and villages along Spain's Mediterranean
seaboard have been inundated. Further down the coast,
in Valencia and Murcia, dozens of roads and railway
lines have been cut.
In all, states of emergency have been declared in 11
provinces, with Zaragoza, Teruel and Albacete also
In Valencia 149 mm fell in the 24 hrs to 1800GMT on
Tuesday, including 109 mm overnight. Valencia has had 227 mm between Sunday
morning and Tuesday evening.
- Naval commandos rescued trapped families from their
balconies as rain-driven floods swept across the Tel Aviv
area, temporarily closing the city's main highway and driving hundreds
of residents from their homes. A little more than 3
inches fell in 24 hours. Almost 600 people in the Tel Aviv area had to be
evacuated. The Ayalon
Freeway, Tel Aviv's main traffic artery, was blocked for hours on its
northbound lanes after the rain swept tons of mud onto the road.
- The death toll in weekend rainstorms in Bangladesh was at least
28. At least 200
people were injured and more than 100 fishermen missing after strong
winds and heavy rains lashed the Bangladesh coast on Saturday.
- Tropical storm Xangsane whirled away from
the Philippines on Sunday, leaving at least 12 people dead and 25
missing in its wake. More than 26,600 people were evacuated from
flooded villages in southeastern portions of Luzon Island, the worst-hit
area. Most of those who died either drowned or were killed by falling
trees or collapsing walls. Among the missing were 19 fishermen who
had been out in eight motorboats off Borlongan on the eastern island of
The Met Office UK said the weather in
southern England was the worst for more than a decade,
recalling the storm of October 1987.
At least four people were
killed on wet and
windswept roads in
England and Wales, and a
Dutch ship's captain was
found dead after falling into
the hold of his vessel
There were four deaths in
France and one in Ireland,
most of them caused by
The Eurostar train service, linking London with Paris
and Brussels, was suspended until 1500 GMT on
Monday, and in France the speed of the TGV
high-speed trains was cut to half, as high winds brought
trees down across railway lines.
Air France cancelled 140 flights in total, 30 of them
long-haul, and British Airways cancelled 88 flights on
Monday morning alone.
Ferries between Denmark and Sweden were also
disrupted, and light traffic - motorcycles and cars with
trailers - were prevented from travelling on the new
Oresund bridge connecting the two countries.
Several towns on Norway's southern coast were flooded,
with abnormally high tides, driven by wind and rain,
flooding the centre of Kristiansand and Arendal.
As gale-force winds lashed the Atlantic coast of France,
an Italian cargo ship carrying toxic chemicals sent out
distress signals, and all 14 aboard were taken ashore by
In N Holland, 24-hour rainfall totals to 0600GMT on the 30th included West Terschelling 81.2 mm, Midsland 82 mm, Formerum 91.3 mm. The village of Oost-Vlieland on the island of Vlieland had 85.5 mm - giving a
total of 114 mm there between Friday and Monday morning.
Five passengers were slightly hurt when a train caught fire near Utrecht - probably as a result of wind damage to the overhead wiring.
- Rescue efforts were halted Tuesday evening on
Indonesia's main island as heavy rains continued to pound sites where
landslides killed at least 34 people. In the Central Java
province town of Cilacap, 21 bodies were found after seven
rain-triggered landslides early on Monday and nine people were missing
and feared dead.
- Worsening Drought in Southeast US: In the U.S., drought conditions have worsened across
the southeast, with many areas in moderate to extreme drought. Some locations, including the
Greenville-Spartanburg airport in South Carolina, have recorded no rainfall for the entire
month of October. The 2000 drought, affecting agricultural regions of the south and southeast
since spring, has caused well over $2 billion in losses. This includes significant losses to the
corn, cotton, and soybean crops.
World weather news, November 2000
- A tornado hit the North Dakota capital city
of Bismarck Wednesday afternoon. More
than 40 homes were damaged and shoppers
at the city's largest shopping mall had to
It was one of several twisters reported in
North Dakota. It was the first
time a tornado had struck the state in
November since official record-keeping
began in 1916.
- Typhoon Xangsane whirled away from Taiwan and closer to southern Japan, leaving 54 dead and 32 missing in the island's worst flooding in three decades. The storm
also killed 40 people and left 66 others missing in
the Philippines last week. It caused the worst floods in Taiwan for 30 years.
- As a
blizzard dumped snow across the
Northern Plains (USA), a tour bus carrying
dozens of Canadian tourists flipped over in southwestern North Dakota
and landed upside down.
Many of the 56 people aboard the bus Thursday suffered broken bones
and a few were flown to Bismarck with more serious injuries.
The central and northern Black Hills area of South Dakota was hit the
hardest, while Lead, South Dakota, set a single-day accumulation record,
with 31.9 inches, according to the National Weather Service.
- Heavy rain in Hawaii. The rains were
the heaviest and most persistent across the eastern half (windward side) of
Hawaii. Hilo reported 27.24 inches of rain in a 24-hour period from approximately 1 PM HST on November 1st, 2000. This broke the previous 24 hour rainfall record of 22.30 inches set on
February 19th and 20th in 1979. Deep tropical moisture was pulled northward over parts of
the Hawaiian Islands fueling strong convection and flooding rains. The rainfall from the
thunderstorms flooded numerous homes, forcing dozens of families to evacuate. In addition,
several landslides were reported on Hawaii Belt Highway, and schools and most businesses
Kapapala Ranch on the island of Hawaii reported 27.49 inches of rain for a 24 hour period
ending at 2AM HST on November 3rd, 2000.
The Hawaiian state 24 hour rainfall record is 38.00 inches at Kilauea Plantation on the island of
Kauai and occurred on Jan 24-25, 1956.
- Typhoon Bebinca affected
the northern Philippines on Friday, killing
at least 26 people, triggering landslides and flooding
many areas. Packing
winds of up to 95 mph when it hit, the storm was
about 260 miles west-northwest of Manila midday
Saturday, moving toward southern China at 12 mph
with top winds of 65 mph. Bebinca is expected to re-gain strength as it
moves across the South China Sea. Typhoon Bebinca arrived a week
after Typhoon Xangsane swept through the northern
Philippines and left 54 people dead, 249 injured and 66 missing.
- Heavy rains and thunderstorms associated with the slow passage of a cold front and
upper-level low pressure system through Texas state was responsible for flooding that
claimed six lives.
- Alpes-Maritimes in SE France had hours of heavy rain and strong winds - leading to
flooding and landslips. Gusts of 85-95 km/hr in Nice.
In Nice a 60 year-old man was killed by a landslip. The seaward side of the
Promenade des Anglais seafront road was closed to traffic on Monday evening
because of shingle blown from the beach. Nice Airport was also closed for a
A 34 year-old man was killed by a mudslide in the town of Gap as he was helping a
driver whose car had got stuck in the mud.
Rainfall totals in the 24 hrs to 19.00 local time on Monday - Ajaccio on Corsica
46 mm, Bordeaux 49 mm, Marseille 54 mm, Nice 111 mm, Cannes 116 mm.
Vence in the hills above Nice had 143 mm between 18.00 local time on Sunday and
12.00 on Monday - including 98 mm between 04.00 and 10.00.
Amateur site at Besse-sur-Issole NE of Toulon had 93 mm between 22.00 on Sunday
and 12.00 on Monday.
Cap Ferret near Arcachon reported 83 km/hr gusting 130 km/hr and
Pointe du Raz in Brittany 91 km/hr gusting 120 km/hr.
Earlier in the day mean winds/gusts reported included Ouessant 83/111 km/hr, Ile
d'Oléron 60/110 km/hr, Belle Ile 70/120 km/hr and Ile d'Yeu 70/120 km/hr.
- On Sunday night Switzerland was swept by violent föhn winds - electric poles and
trees were blown down and some houses suffered damaged roofs. Gusts of 200 km/hr
were reported on the highest peaks.
- Rain-triggered landslides killed at least 52
people. As many as 14 villages in Central Java
province were hit on Sunday after two days of heavy monsoon rain. In the
village of Pacekelen, 14 people were buried alive. Ten are still missing.
Police and soldiers are working to find survivors. Last week, landslides
killed 36 people in the same region, about 280 miles from Jakarta.
- In northern Italy storms caused
floods and landslides, forcing scores
of people to evacuate their homes.
Three people, including an elderly man who drowned in his home, died
on Monday in Liguria, the area around Genoa which has been hit hard
by recent bad weather. Another man died in Val D'Aosta.
In the centre-southern Abruzzo region, a man was missing after his
fishing boat went down in a storm off the coast of Vasto, in the Adriatic
Sea. Another man aboard has been rescued.
24-hour rainfall totals included - Turin 36 mm, Rivolto 43 mm, Piacenza 52 mm,
Genoa 94 mm, and in the Giovi Pass 130 mm. Locarno in Switzerland had 91 mm.
- Powerful thunderstorms moved across Alabama overnight and spread into
Georgia, soaking Atlanta's morning rush hour.
The storm system battered parts of Louisiana, Mississippi and Alabama on
Wednesday and generated at least thirty-two tornado warnings. A warning
means that a tornado either has been sighted or has been indicated on radar.
- Snow moved into the Dallas-Fort Worth (USA) area overnight and iced roads and
bridges. The snow was heaviest in western portions of the state. The city of Sweetwater
reported 10 inches of snow. Five inches of snow fell on San Angelo, which tied
the city's record date for the earliest snowfall.
thunderstorms battered the Houston (Texas, USA) area Sunday night.
High winds tore the roofs off apartment buildings, knocked down trees and left
thousands of people without electricity.
Five people received minor injuries, when the winds ripped the roofs off five
apartment buildings in south Houston.
A wind gust of about 78 mph was recorded at Houston's Hobby International
At one point, 23,000 customers were without
power in Harris, Fort Bend and Wharton
counties. The storm also generated golf-ball sized
hail in some areas.
- The Leonid meteor shower is expected next
weekend and once again, NASA will offer a
stratospheric view of the annual show.
As many as 100 shooting stars per hour could streak across the sky on Nov.17 and
18, as the earth passes through debris from the comet Tempel-Tuttle.
The best viewing is expected from the eastern United States, Canada, Africa and
Europe. However, weather conditions, city lights and uncertain meteor forecasts
can disappoint Leonid fans, so the best view may be on your computer screen.
NASA plans to launch a camera-equipped weather balloon 100,000 feet above the
earth and then offer live pictures of the meteor shower on the web at
The balloon is scheduled for launch early Saturday morning, Nov.18 and should
reach maximum altitude during the last of three meteor stream encounters.
- The native people of the Canadian Arctic are seeing
something unknown in their oral history - thunder and lightning.
Electric storms in the upper Arctic are among the evidence of climate
change being reported in a new study by the International Institute for
Sustainable Development, based in Winnipeg, Manitoba. The study lists various
environmental changes, including melting permafrost and thinning ice.
And some more subtle changes, such as the appearance of robins and
barn swallows that allegedly weren't previously seen so far north.
- Venezuelan President Hugo Chavez declared a
state of emergency in 10 states after days of incessant
heavy rains left at least three people dead and 2,400 homeless in the
northern coast. The rains have raised fears of a recurrence of last year's
massive floods and mudslides that killed at least 15,000 people, left tens
of thousands homeless and wiped out entire towns in the northern
coastal state of Vargas. The capital city of Caracas, Vargas and eight
other states on the northern coast and to the west were declared in a
state of emergency. Two people died after
mudslides buried their homes and one man drowned after he was swept
away by an overflowing river. Rivers swelled, streets became streams
and mudslides buried hundreds of shanty homes this week as rains
poured down on the northern coast and west of the country.
- Yet more heavy falls of rain in parts of SE France and Northern Italy.
Rainfall totals in the 24 hrs ending 0600 GMT on Friday included
Nice 40 mm, Le Luc 53 mm, Hyères 55 mm, Cap Cépetn 93 mm and Locarno 68 mm.
Near gale force N-NW mistral in Marseille on Friday afternoon and evening with
gusts to 91 km/hr. Toulon and St Tropez had gusts to 110 km/hr; Cap Béar near
Collioure reported 125 km/hr. 24-hour rainfall totals ending 1800 GMT on Friday included Piacenza 47 mm, Turin 49 mm, Genoa 84 mm. Oran on the Algerian coast had 45 mm in the 24 hrs ending 0600 GMT on Saturday.
- Two avalanches swept away groups of skiers at
separate resorts in the western province of Tyrol, killing four
people. The first avalanche roared down a
mountain at the ski resort of Obergurgl, 215 miles west of Vienna,
killing three German skiers. The search using helicopters and dogs was
concentrated on the Rosskar ski area, where witnesses said skiers had
ventured onto runs that had been closed due to avalanche warnings. A
second avalanche struck hours later in Goelbner, another tiny Tyrolean
resort 260 miles southwest of Vienna. It swept away a group of seven
skiers, killing an Austrian man.
- Torrential rain sweeping across parts of western
and central Greece flooded thousands of homes and left
motorists stranded, from Athens to the holiday island of Corfu. Many districts in Athens were blacked out for several
hours, as rain water flooded central roads and buildings in the capital.
One woman was killed when her car was hit by falling rocks on a
southbound Athens highway. In Corfu,
fierce gales damaged homes, lifting the roofs off many properties.
- At least 11,000 people have been forced to
leave their homes in Sri Lanka's northeast after floods swept through
three cities. The displaced people
were rushing to safer areas from Batticaloa, Ampara and Polonnaruwah
towns and taking refuge in schools, hospitals and public buildings, the
broadcast said. Heavy rains lashed the region, damaging huts, harming
crops, lagoon fish and prawn yields.
- Flooding triggered by torrential downpours
derailed a train, caused rivers to overflow their banks and submerged
rice fields in central Vietnam. At least 31 people
were killed. An average of 12 inches of rain fell on nine coastal
provinces from Thursday to Sunday, causing the region's rivers to
train and three carriages derailed near the resort city of Nha
Trang when a culvert was washed away Friday night, killing the
engineer and injuring his assistant.
- Fueled by two weeks of heavy rain, floodwaters
cut off villages and destroyed crops Monday in two eastern Australian
states. About 50 homes in the village of Woolomin, about 150 miles
north of Sydney, were evacuated as the Peel River burst its banks. The
swollen river also threatened the nearby provincial town of Tamworth.
At least 12 rivers in northern New South Wales state were reported to
be flooding. To the north in Queensland state, damage in the town of
Mackay was being assessed after torrential rain forced the evacuation of
homes and damaged fields of sugar cane. Flood warnings also were in
force for rivers across eastern Queensland.
- Rising floodwaters disrupted rail and road travel in western
Sweden. A graveyard in the town of Arvika was reportedly submerged, as rivers
flowing south from the Norweigen Mountains, through western Sweden, reached record levels.
Sweden's largest lake, Vanern is reportedly so full that the state controlled utility Vattenfall has been
forced to release an unprecedented 1,000 cubic metres of water per second in to the Gota Canal
system leading towards Gothenburg.
- All schools in Vladivostok were closed
as snowstorms raged in the area for more than 24 hours. Many streets were reportedly under
1.5m of snow.
- Rescue workers pulled out the bodies of
four people who died when a mudslide hit their house in the Tuscan
countryside. One other person was missing and presumed dead. The mudslide hit the village of Vinchiana,
located about 6 miles north of Lucca, on Monday. Heavy rains have
caused floods in northern and central Italy, forcing scores of people to
evacuate their homes.
- Buffalo (New York) was moving again as
tow truck drivers, police officers and snow plows
worked through the night to clear roads
blanketed by a 25-inch snowstorm. Stuck schoolchildren were
reunited with their parents, and a 65-mile section
of the New York State Thruway reopened on
Wednesday morning. The monthly total as of 7 AM LST on the 21st was 42.20
inches, which is a new monthly November record
- A storm that has been raging
since the weekend has killed nine
people in Mozambique.
Five of those killed in the recent rains were in the central province of
Zambezia and four were in the northern province of Nampula.
- 1,800 individuals remained
in makeshift shelters in Canada de Gomez after a severe storm hit the city Wednesday night and
early Thursday causing a river bordering the city to overflow. Two deaths have been reported, and
more than 1,000 homes were damaged as 150mm of rain fell on the city in a few hou
- An elderly couple died when their home was
swept away in a mudslide on the Italian Riviera and hundreds
of people were evacuated after fresh torrential rains hit the
The town of Imperia and villages in the mountainous hinterland
were isolated by landslides and mudslides that also disrupted rail
traffic on Thursday and Friday morning on the coastal line between
Genoa and the French border, and closed down roads.
- Torrential rain and strong winds wreaked havoc in
Paphos (Cyprus). A total of 40-43mm of rainfall accumulated in Paphos as property was
damaged and power was disrupted. However, the highest rainfall total recorded was 96mm in Athalassa.
- Bad weather downed power lines, forcing two more Ukrainian nuclear
reactors to shut down and leaving millions of people without electricity.
Driving rain, snow, ice and heavy winds have swept across Ukraine
since the weekend, causing widespread power failures. Nuclear plants
provide 50% of Ukraine electricity. Half of its 14 reactors were down
- Cyclone 03B uprooted hundreds of trees and
demolished mud huts on India's southern coast, killing six people and
injuring 12. The storm's 75 mph winds struck
the mainland from the Bay of Bengal on Wednesday at Cuddalore, a
port town in Tamil Nadu state/
The cyclone weakened and later dissipated after it hit the coastline.
- The six-month Atlantic hurricane season
officially ends today with a tally of 14 named
storms, of which eight became hurricanes and
three reached major hurricane status with
steady winds faster than 110 mph. Despite the
busier-than-normal season, the USA escaped without a hurricane
strike. The last time that happened was in 1994.
- A late-season tropical storm brought heavy
rain, high waves and flooding to parts of the southern Philippines,
forcing residents to flee coastal villages. The storm affected
Siargao island, a popular surfing spot 470 miles southeast of Manila.
Nine towns were flooded in northern Mindanao, forcing 1,640 people to
flee their homes by rising floodwaters and big waves that threatened
coastal villages in the region. Elsewhere, more than 1,500 passengers
waiting for ferry rides from the main island of Luzon to central
Philippine islands were stranded after authorities halted ferry services.
World weather news, December 2000
- The lower 48 states (USA) had the second coldest
November on record (since 1895), mostly due to the cold in the West.
For instance, Denver's mean temperature of 28.9F was 8.7F below normal,
and was only surpassed back in 1880. See here for more figures.
- Reported on the radio this morning, New Zealand experienced the coolest
November for 50 years. This was attributed to the number of south
westerly weather systems passing over the country.
It was colder then usual in central and eastern areas of the North
Island and drier and more sunny in the north and west of the South
- Floods have killed at least 14 people and left
thousands homeless in Indonesia's North Sulawesi province. Days of monsoon rains caused the city's three rivers to
burst their banks late on Thursday. Flooding and landslides have killed at least 200
people in Indonesia in the last month. Environmentalists say widespread
deforestation - the result of timber cutting by logging operations and
villagers looking for firewood - has been a contributing factor in the
- A river swollen by heavy rains
overflowed its banks near the gold fields of northwestern Tanzania,
killing at least 26 people and injuring 17 others. More than two hours of heavy rainfall on Friday caused
the Mirongo River to swell on the outskirts of the Lake Victoria port of
Mwanza. It was the first time in
memory that such heavy flooding hit the region, which is the East
African nation's breadbasket and center of gold mining activities.
- Floods subsided in much of the central and
southern Philippines as tropical storm Rumbia moved away from the
country, but the storm left at least 12 people dead and seven missing
- Early snow storms in Mongolia
have killed almost 16,000 head of livestock and thousands of families are
migrating to save herds from another devastating winter, the State
- The 2001 Atlantic
hurricane season will be quieter after
six years of record activity, said
hurricane forecaster William Gray
Thursday. Gray and his team of
forecasters expect nine named storms,
five hurricanes and two major
hurricanes in 2001. Between 1950 and
1990, the Atlantic Basin, which
includes the North Atlantic, Caribbean
Sea and Gulf of Mexico, averaged 9.3
named storms, 5.8 hurricanes and 2.2
major hurricanes per year.
- Cyclone Sam
was upgraded to a category five
severe tropical cyclone early on Friday -
the top of a five-point scale - as
it moved closer to Australia.
At 4 a.m. WST (2000 GMT on the 7th) Sam was
located 93 miles west of
Broome, Western Australia
- A trough crossing Belgium on Sunday afternoon gave heavy showers with thunder in
many places and hail in some. Alsemberg near Brussels reported 1 cm diameter
hailstones. Gusts recorded included 70kn at Liège-Bierset.
In St Gérard near Namur one person was killed and another injured when they were
hit by roof tiles blown off by the wind.
In Wortegem-Petegem in East Flanders, the roofs of 3 houses were badly damaged.
In various other places the fire brigade were called to deal with blown down
trees, snapped electric cables and damaged roofs and chimneys. In Puurs near
Antwerp several cars were damaged when part of the roof of a block of flats blew
on to them.
Around 14.00 the village of Houdain south of Lille in Northern France suffered
what might have been a small tornado. A number of house roofs were severely
damaged and a man was hurt by debris.
Storms affected Germany later in the evening. In Trier roofs were blown off
stalls in the Christmas market - 5 people were hurt by flying debris. Nuremberg
Airport registered wind force 10 and around 40 calls were made to the fire brigade
there to deal with wind damage.
- Cold air from Canada, combined with a storm system that probably
was born near the Rockies, created ice and snow that coated much of
Nebraska, Iowa, Missouri, Illinois and Indiana (USA).
The cold reached south to Texas and as far west as California,
Washington and Oregon.
By midday, United Airlines had cancelled 364 of its 434 planned
departures from Chicago's O'Hare International Airport and 334 of its
434 planned arrivals. O'Hare is United's biggest hub
- The monsoon trough, extending NE from ex-TC Sam across the Gulf of Carpentaria (Australia),
continues to produce isolated heavy falls. Abington Downs, near Georgetown, southeast
of the Gulf, recorded 136.6mm to 9am. Over 400mm has fallen to the south and east of the
Gulf in the past week, with river systems, including the Gregory, in flood. Two people
were airlifted from their home near Lawn Hill National Park today as floodwaters rose.
- A group of up to 163 illegal immigrants feared drowned while trying to reach Australia from Indonesia likely sailed into a massive cyclone, Australia's immigration minister said.
Australia has said the 163 immigrants, probably from the Middle East,
were thought to have died after leaving Indonesia late last week in two
boats for Ashmore Islands, an outcrop of reefs about 600 km (370 miles)
off Australia's remote northwest.
The two boats -- one carrying 87 people and another with 80 aboard --
left while Tropical Cyclone Sam was building in intensity off Australia's
northwest near the Timor Sea. Four survivors were picked up by a
- Residents from the Plains to the Northeast (USA) coped with power outages
and treacherous travel as a winter storm that rampaged
across the nation moved out to sea. Nearly 500,000 homes and
businesses in Arkansas and Texas alone were without electricity after
Wednesday's ice storms caused power lines to fall. Slick roads and
heavy snowfall caused at least 11 traffic deaths from Texas to Indiana.
- One person was seriously injured and
others were feared buried under rubble Thursday after a portion of a
snow-covered roof collapsed in a suburban shopping mall in Sarnia, Ontario (Canada).
Much of central and eastern Canada have been under a blanket of snow
since Monday, with two winter storms dumping 40 to 50 centimeters (16
to 20 inches) of snow over the region.
- Winds gusting up to 90
mph left at least 100,000 homes and
businesses without electricity
in western Washington State (USA) as snow
snarled traffic in other parts of the
state. One death was reported on
- Freezing rain affected much of
Arkansas (USA) today, closing more than
100 schools throughout the state.
- Tornadoes killed 12 and injured over 50 when they hit Tuscaloosa and other parts of Alabama (USA).
- Thousands of people waited for
the electricity to be turned back on
today as the latest in a series of
storms blew blinding snow and
bitingly cold air across the USA. Police urged travellers to
stay off the roads in parts of the
northern Plains as blowing snow
cut visibility to near zero.
Highways had been shut down in
parts of Wyoming, cutting off
access to one town, and winds
gusting to 41 mph have produced
wind chills as low 47 degrees below zero at Fergus Falls, Minn.
- Floods and mudslides triggered by two days of
heavy rain killed 13 people and drove more than 2,000 from their homes
in southeastern Brazil, civil defense officials said Tuesday. Although the
torrential weekend rains that pounded the states of Espirito Santo,
Minas Gerais and Sao Paulo have subsided, some cities and towns
remained isolated because of damaged bridges and flooded highways.
- Mudslides caused by heavy rains in southern
Brazil killed three people and blocked roads. Two toddlers and an unidentified third person
were buried in collapsed homes Sunday night in the city of Alto Feliz,
said Ricardo Andre Lanius, a highway patrol officer in Rio Grande do
Sul state. He said heavy seasonal rains caused flooding in the northern
part of the state and washed out parts of a major state highway near
Porto Alegre, some 700 miles southwest of Rio de Janeiro.
- Workers cleared rocks and branches from Havana's major
thoroughfares today after heavy weekend rain killed two people and
damaged 135 homes. The deluge - an average of 6.9 inches - took its
toll on Havana's older neighbourhoods, collapsing 25 dilapidated
buildings. Local administrator
- Exceptional extremes in temperature continued today, with both minimum and maximum temperatures 10C to 15C above and below normal
reported. It was an unusually cold start to the day in southeastern Australia as the cold air that has been sweeping Tasmania over the past few
days made its presence felt. Canberra recorded its coldest summer morning since 1987 when the thermometer dropped to 3C, while Omeo, across
the border in Victoria, recorded -1.2C, 9.5C below normal, and Scamander on Tasmania's east coast recorded 3.8C, its lowest December minimum in a 17
year record. Meanwhile, towns in southwestern WA had a hot night with temperatures not dropping below the mid-20s, around 11 or 12C above
average. Today, cloud again kept much of Central Queensland 10 to 15 below, while Western Australia's heatwave moved east somewhat,
giving Albany Airport a top temperature of 40.9C, only 2C shy of its December record, and towns in the Great Southern tops of around 40C.
- Nearly a week after
a Christmas ice storm devastated the
southern Plains (USA), tens of thousands of
homes and businesses in Arkansas,
Oklahoma and Texas remain without
power. About 135,000 homes and
businesses in the state remained in
the dark. Some communities
have also been without water and
sewer service for days. In Oklahoma, about 104,000 people remained
without power, and some areas weren't expected to get service restored
for five to 10 days.
- A rare snowfall up to 4 inches deep made roadways slick and sent
numerous cars and trucks spinning off the road throughout northern
Louisiana on New Year's Eve. It was the largest accumulation in the
state in 15 years, as temperatures dipped down into the 20s overnight.
By nightfall, Interstate 49 and the eastbound lanes of Interstate 220 were
closed. Traffic was at a standstill along state Highway 3 after two
18-wheelers collided and three others slid off the roadway. I-20
between Ruston and Monroe was also clogged.
- At east one runway is open in each
of the New York area's airport
as the region
begins cleaning up from a record
snowstorm. As much as 29 inches of
snow plastered New York, New
Jersey and other parts of the
Northeast USA on Saturday, cancelling
hundreds of flights and slowing
motorists in and out of some of the
nation's major cities to a crawl. New
York's Central Park recorded 12
inches of snow, a record for Dec. 30.
If you have a snippet of weather news that you feel merits inclusion, then please feel free to email it to me.
Last updated 28 September 2015.