Wednesday, January 22, 2014

FIRE IN THE SKY: Meteor Fireball Streaks Over Dromore, Northern Ireland!

January 22, 2014 - IRELAND - People across Banbridge district and beyond have reported seeing a large meteor shooting across the night sky.

It was seen breaking up into pieces on the evening of Wednesday January 15, with sightings reported across the Banbridge district, Lurgan, Moira, Belfast and Dublin.

File photo.

People took to Twitter to report the sightings including Mark Kendall @annadale0 who posted to @ArmaghPlanet "Noticed a meteorite I think, (it was still alight) flying through the air above Banbridge about 6.30pm was an amazing sight!".

Many people described seeing a bright fireball moving across the sky with a large tail.

Armagh Observatory received many telephone and internet reports from members of the public reporting sightings of the meteoroid. Reports of the fireball can be viewed as a link from the Armagh Observatory website.

A report from Donaghcloney said: "An orange fireball in the East, travelling roughly South to North, about 35-40 degrees above the horizon. Became white before splitting in two, then became orange again and burst into four or five pieces and disappeared.

"It was very bright, traveled almost horizontally from my viewpoint and traversed roughly a 45 degree arc of sky. In view for about three or four seconds I think. Easily as bright as Jupiter, maybe brighter."

The fireball was described as a "streak across the sky lasting 4-5 seconds, lovely tail, bits breaking up towards the end" by a person in Rathfriland.

Another report from Rathfriland said: "I was facing due east and observed a medium bright orange coloured star sized object crossing the sky from right to left over Rathfriland.

"It lasted for about two seconds and then broke up into three or maybe four parts.

"It broke up just below and to the right of the moon as I looked at it. Very impressive."

The fireball was also witnessed by people out running near the Outlet Shopping Centre Banbridge.

The report said: "We were running around the outer road at the Outlet Shopping Centre (Dromore side)in Banbridge adjacent to the A1.

"I was running with a friend and our attention was drawn to the colour and the sound of a large fireball about 10ft-15ft in length.

"It was travelling at high speed.

"It was a clear evening which made it stand out beautifully!

"It came from the general direction of Newry and was travelling in general direction of Dromore just inland off the A1 dual carriageway. It wasn't that high off the ground approximately 150-200 ft but disappeared in direction of Dromore."  - Banbridge Leader.

MASS FISH DIE-OFF: Massive Die-Off Of Fish Occuring In A Branch Of The Nile In Desouk, Egypt!

January 22, 2014 - EGYPT - Increasing numbers of dead fish are floating to the surface of the water in the Nile’s Rosetta branch near the coastal city of Desouk, which indicates a potentially serious environmental disaster could be underway.

Photographer: Sherif Sadek

Fishermen reported a foul stench, thinking at first it was coming from the sewage or the industrial waste of the factories.
The governor has formed a committee to take samples of the fish and send them to the central laboratories of Kafr al-Sheikh to analyze and determine the causes.
The residents of the city complain that it has been three days and the numbers of dead fish are still growing, changing the color of the water.
Hani al-Mahlawy of the Preventive Security Administration claims the fish are dying due to the winter blockage of the Nile water that takes place around this time every year, which reduces the amount of oxygen in the water. - Egypt Independent.

WEATHER ANOMALIES: Acid Snow Falls In Seoul, South Korea - pH Levels Drop To "Abnormal" 4.2 On Average!

January 22, 2014 - SOUTH KOREA - Areas of South Korea were covered by acid snow on Monday, with pH dropping to 4.2 on average. The measurements were taken in the capital city of Seoul. The pH of normal rain is about 5.5, anything below that is consider abnormal.

The Seoul Research Institute of Public Health and Environment measured the acidity of snow at eight observation spots in the capital between 2 a.m. and 8 a.m. In the afternoon, the acidity level slightly improved to 4.3-4.4 as snow washed pollutants from the city.

The regions of Guro-dong and Yangjae-dong had the most acidic snow at pH 3.8 between 7a.m. and 8 a.m., somewhere between orange juice (pH 4.0) and wine (pH 3.5).

According to the report, some areas must have had snow even more acidic than in Seoul.

Acid rain, snow, or sleet is precipitation that is more acidic than pure water, which has a pH of 7.0. Normal rain contains carbon dioxide, which makes it a little more acidic than pure water. As mentioned earlier, the pH of normal rain is about 5.5. True acid rain, however, can have a pH that’s much lower. The lower the PH is, the more acidic the precipitation is. - Bob Tuskin.

PLAGUES & PESTILENCES: Mass Animal Die-Off - Massive Loss Of Wild Boars Due To Disease In Lithuania!

January 22, 2014 - LITHUANIA - lt received a letter of hunters who reported that in Alytus region observed massive loss of wild boars . Hunters believe that the reason for this phenomenon - swine fever , which came to Lithuania from Belarus. Moreover, hunters accuse government agencies that they hide the fact that the appearance of the disease in Lithuania. State Food and Veterinary Service ( GPVS ) claims that swine fever in our country is not fixed.

Hunter Ramunas Leonavičius said boar deaths recorded since last summer . And now , he says , are already dead boar and other areas , for example in Šalčininkai .

Most interlocutor outraged that still have not established the cause mortality boar : " If winter comes, then all will spread very quickly. But everyone is silent , trying not to panic. First boars found in the woods in summer Kalnishkes . But they said that they are just so izdohli . I suspect that the authorities are trying to hide it . "

Another interviewee told that Dzukija dead boars are from November . According to him, during this period found about 40 dead wild boar. The man said that the outward signs resemble African swine fever . According to his observations , most boars found in the woods Varchos , Kalesnikay and Gediminas . Hunter said that he had heard that all the dead animals on the face was blood and foam body dotted with black spots. However, he noted that all this does not convince experts GPVS that boars could hurt dangerous infectious disease.

However, the chairman of Alytus community of hunters and fishermen Evaldas Daynauskas said, that should not dramatize the situation . He did not deny the fact of unexplained mortality boars in Alytus region , however, argued that studies have not confirmed that the animals suffered from the plague.

" The situation is not very good, but not formally confirmed that the reason - a terrible disease . Kabanov find , but there are no signs of the plague " - reassured Daynauskas .

Representative GPVS inspector Marius Masiulis said, that the situation is heating up too . According to him, laboratory studies have not confirmed the plague .

"We always leave on a call , take samples . Laboratory studies do not suggest that this plague. But the cause of mortality can not be called . Late dead boar found over the weekend. He transported to the laboratory ," - said the source , adding that the such cases, only checked , not hurt if an animal dangerous diseases , in this case - the plague. If you do not hurt , other studies have not been conducted . However, as observed in the case for a long time , this time dead animals examined comprehensively. Hoping to clarify the cause of death of animals. - Delfi. [Translated]

INFRASTRUCTURE & SOCIETAL COLLAPSE: Mass Animal Die-Off - Freak Train Accident Leaves 48 Reindeer Dead In Sweden?!

January 22, 2014 - SWEDEN - Forty-eight reindeer were killed in an instant in northern Sweden after being run over by a speeding train they tried in vain to outrun, transport officials said on Tuesday.

The reindeer in the picture are not the reindeer mentioned in the article.
File photo: Magnus Hjalmarson Neideman/SvD

"It wasn't pretty to see," one reindeer rancher, Ingmar Blind, told state television network SVT.

The animals, which provide a livelihood for many in remote northern Sweden, met their fate on Saturday near the village of Kaitum in the country's Laponia region.

Near-misses by railways are common as herds migrate during winter in search of food.

But in this case it appeared the herd had wandered onto snow-covered tracks and were startled by the train, the regional transport official in charge of maintenance, Fredrik Rosendahl, told AFP.

The reindeer instinctively all ran along the tracks before the train, which crushed them.

"If you follow a reindeer in a car, for instance, it will tend to run in front of the car, it won't go to one side," Rosendahl explained. "So just imagine what happens with a train that needs more than a kilometre to come to a stop."

While the extent of the carnage in Saturday's train-reindeer collision was unique in its scope, reindeer herders have long complained about the fatal consequences of increased rail traffic in Sweden's far north.

Back in 2012, a new high-speed rail line claimed the lives of an estimated 200 reindeer in its first three months of operation, prompting one herder to compare the train to a meat grinder. - The Local.

FIRE IN THE SKY: Huge Meteor Lights Up The Night Skies Over Ukraine!

January 22, 2014 - UKRAINE - At 3:50am, a meteor is seen streaking across the night sky. The meteor broke up in the atmosphere.

A meteorite lights up the sky near Mount Castel, as bright as day, if only for a second.

A second piece of footage has surfaced, albeit with a wrong date, captured at Simferopol, Ukraine.

WATCH:  Huge meteor over Ukraine.

- Mount Castel / YouTube.

MASS MAMMAL DIE-OFF: Disaster Precursors - Over 50 Pilot Whales Stranded At Farewell Spit, New Zealand?!

January 22, 2014 - NEW ZEALAND - Nearly 50 pilot whales have re-stranded on Farewell Spit, frustrating efforts by experts and hundreds of volunteers to steer them back out to sea.

Source: AAP

The Department of Conservation says 48 whales were stranded at Triangle Flat, near the base of the spit, about 6:30pm today, after spending a few hours out in Golden Bay.

They will be cared for until dark by around 40 volunteers and it is expect the whales will refloat on the incoming tide.

DOC rangers will look for the whales at daybreak tomorrow.

"It is unsafe to attempt to refloat whales in darkness," DOC spokeswoman Trish Grant said.

DOC rangers, Project Jonah volunteers and others have been trying over the weekend to refloat the dozens of whales.

The pod of about 50 had spent a few hours in Golden Bay this afternoon, before they re-stranded.

That was despite eight whales, which had stayed close to the shore, being put down to prevent them causing the bulk of the pod to re-strand.

Today, 40 whales were refloated, 30 swam further out to sea but 10 whales hung back swimming parallel to the coastline. They then re-stranded. The other whales at sea then headed back to shore, also re-stranding on Farewell Spit.

WATCH:  Farewell Spit pilot whales strand again.

About 100 volunteers have assisted in caring for the whales and refloating them, many of them trained Project Jonah volunteers.

A total of 71 whales were found on the beach this morning, including eight dead, spread over 1.6km.

This morning, 53 whales stranded, including 13 which died.

The whales are believed to be part of the same pod seen off Taupata Point, south of Farewell Spit, on Tuesday. Later that day, 13 whales stranded on the spit - none of which survived.

Pilot whales regularly become stranded on Farewell Spit. On January 6, 39 whales stranded there and died or were put down. - 3News.

Several days earlier,...

Eight whales stranded off the northern tip of New Zealand's South Island will be euthanised after attempts over two day to refloat them proved unsuccessful.

The pilot whales that originally stranded on Farewell Spit on Tuesday were refloated on Wednesday and volunteers helped stop them beaching again when they were forced out of the water at nightfall.

The whales were found beached again on Thursday morning.

Department of Conservation ranger John Mason says they will not attempt to rescue them again and they will be euthanised on Thursday morning.

"It's been 48 hours since they stranded now, and they've been refloated twice, and they have had every chance to move to deeper water," he told AAP.

"They are now starting to show signs of physical deterioration and they are noticeably agitated, more than before."

The original group which stranded on Tuesday was made up of 13 whales, but five had died by Wednesday morning.

The remaining eight were refloated at high tide on Wednesday by DOC staff, Project Jonah volunteers and members of the local community, and a boat was used to keep them from stranding again during the day, but they did not show any signs of going back to sea.

Windy conditions on Thursday morning meant a boat could not be used if another attempt was made to refloat them, Mr Mason said.

Pilot whales regularly become stranded on Farewell Spit and last Monday 39 were stranded there. All either died or were euthanised. - The Australian.

GLOBAL FOOD CRISIS: Mass Animal Die-Off - Drought Continues To Kill Livestock In Parts Of South Africa!

January 22, 2014 - SOUTH AFRICA - Hundreds of livestock are continuing to die in the drought-stricken South African provinces of North West and Northern Cape.

File photo.

Government aid to affected farmers seems to be inadequate and farmers in Western Cape Province are rushing feed through to as many farms in the two provinces as possible. North West Province Agriculture Committee chairperson Korr Janse van Vuuren said they were grateful for the relief.

Western Cape Province Member of the Executive Council (MEC) for Agriculture Gerrit Van Rensburg announced that Western Cape farmers experienced good harvests in the last couple of years and are willing to assist the North West and Northern Cape provinces.

The problem, however, is transporting the animal feed from Western Cape, said Van Rensburg, who added that state-owned logistics corporation Transnet had agreed to transport the animal feed.

Van Vuuren said they expected the fodder to be transported to the North West at the end of this month, as loading the goods train might take a little longer because of the long distances that some animal feeds will be transported from.

Meanwhile, several parts of the country were experiencing a third day of an intense heat wave over the weekend as the temperature in some provinces hit highs of between 35 and 40 degrees Celsius.

For the third consecutive day Saturday it wasa scorcher and the high levels of discomfort was expected to continue throughout the weekend.

"A heat wave occurs when there is a high pressure system over a massive land, that sinking air, as it begins to sink, it gets warmer and drier and that's what causes a heat wave and by sinking it reduces the chances of cloud cover," says meteorologist, Philip Hawkins.

Over the past few days life-guards have increased their vigilance. "It has increased because people are coming in theirs numbers especially today. It's a Saturday, people are not working. They happy the sun is back as it was raining all December," says lifeguard, Sihle Kubheka.

Temperatures are expected to drop on Monday. The public had been urged to drink lots of water and stay out of the sun between 10 am and 4 pm. - Bernama.

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: Global Volcano Report For January 22, 2014 - Major Updates On Popocatépetl, Kirishima, Santiaguito, Etna, Gorely, Karymsky, Shiveluch, Tolbachik, Suwanose-jima, Bezymianny, Sakurajima, Sinabung, Colima, Pacaya, Fuego, Nevado del Huila, Machin, Galeras, Nevado del Ruiz, Cumbal And Sotará! [PHOTOS + VIDEOS]

January 22, 2014 - WORLDWIDE VOLCANOES - The following constitutes the new activity, unrest and ongoing reports of volcanoes across the globe.

Popocatépetl (Central Mexico): The volcano remains at low activity levels with little changes. CEAPRED reported 2 low-intensity emissions of steam and gas during yesterday, and 2 small explosions that produced minor amounts of ash with the largest yesterday morning at 10:28 (local time) producing a plume reaching 1000 m. Crater glow at night is visible.

Small eruption from Popocatépetl yesterday.

Kirishima (Kyushu): The alert level of the volcano was lowered back to 1, as volcanic activity continued to decrease. Volcanic seismicity remained at low levels and no remarkable change was observed from ground deformation observation and monitoring data.

"Supply of magma from deeper parts to the magma chamber located several km northwest of the the crater has stopped. Since volcanic activity of Shinmoedake has declined, JMA evaluated there was low possibility of eruption that may affect areas more than 1 km from the crater.

However, the lava accumulated in the crater has been in high temperature state, and the possibility of small eruptions remains even now."

Etna (Sicily, Italy): Since last night, sporadic small strombolian explosions have resumed at the New SE crater. The current tremor signal is low, but if Etna continues its activity as during much of last year, this could be a first precursor to a new paroxysm in the following days.

WATCH:  Etna volcano - Intermittent strombolian activity.

Gorely (Southern Kamchatka): No changes were reported by KVERT. The volcano continues to show intense degassing and elevated seismic activity.

Gorely, one of currently 5 volcanoes at unrest or in eruption in Kamchatka remains at Aviation Color Code yellow, along with Bezymianni and Tolbachik, while currently erupting Shiveluch and Karymsky volcanoes are at orange.

Karymsky (Kamchatka): The volcano continues to have sporadic small to medium-sized strombolian-vulcanian explosions from its summit crater. Small ash plumes are regularly being detected on satellite imagery.

Shiveluch (Kamchatka): Another explosion was reported this morning by KVERT via VAAC Tokyo. An ash plume rose to estimated 27,000 ft (8 km) altitude.

Tolbachik (Kamchatka): Although no new eruptive activity has been recorded in the past months, the volcano continues to be at Aviation Color Code yellow. Moderate seismic activity of the volcano continues. Satellite data showed a weak thermal anomaly over the northern area of Tolbachinsky Dol. (KVERT)

Bezymianny (Central Kamchatka): KVERT reports "no detectable seismicity. Moderate gas-steam activity was observed. Satellite data showed the volcano was quiet."

Sakurajima (Kyushu, Japan): The volcano had an explosion this morning followed by near-continuous ash venting. The eruption sent an ash plume over Tarumizu town to the SW (see video). VAAC Tokyo estimated the maximum height of the ash plume to 17,000 ft (5 km), but webcam images suggest a significantly smaller size (2-3 km altitude). Overall, the volcano has been comparably calm over the past week.

WATCH:  Sakurajima volcano activity - January 22, 2014.

Suwanose-jima (Tokara Islands, Japan): The volcano continues to be in eruption. It regularly has (probably strombolian-type) explosions that produce small to medium-sized ash plumes up to 1-2 km in height.

Ash plume from an eruption at Suwanose-jima this morning.

Sinabung (Sumatra, Indonesia): Activity at the volcano continues at reduced rate. The lava dome continues to be active with intense degassing and ash venting, and has produced a series of sporadic smaller pyroclastic flows over the past days.

Colima (Western Mexico): The volcano produces small explosions (reportedly 7-12 daily) generating small ash plumes up to about 1 km high.

Colima's western flank seen during an overflight a week ago (Unidad Estatal de Protección Civil y Bomberos, Jalisco)

An overflight revealed no significant changes at the summit crater where a lava dome is still growing at slow rate and produces small avalanches on the western side. Civil Protection warns of landslides from the steep slopes where a lot of fresh flows and loose material has accumulated over the past months.

Santa María / Santiaguito (Guatemala): Volcanic activity from the active dome remains more or less unchanged both explosive and effusive. The volcano observatory reports small explosions (on average 1-2 per hour), significant degassing, and weak to moderate block avalanches at the active viscous flows on the sides of the Caliente lava dome.

Pacaya (Guatemala): While explosive activity seems to have ceased, lava effusion from the southern fissure vent at the base of the Mackenney cone continues and feeds an active flow field that expands up to 3.6 km from the vent.

MODIS hot spot data (past 2 days) for Pacaya volcano (ModVolc, Univ. Hawaii)

Slowly advancing lava flow fronts continue to burn vegetation and have cut, as in 2010, the dirt road between the villages of El Rodeo and Pocitos.

The vent on the NW flank that fed the second large flow during the recent paroxysm is no longer active. Continuous tremor and bluish degassing from the summit accompany this process. According to the latest information of CONRED, the crater floor of the Mackenney cone has collapsed into a deep pit and the active cone at the vent that had been built over the past year has vanished.

Fuego (Guatemala): It appears that activity has increased over night. A strong continuous seismic signal (probably tremor) suggests an increase in lava effusion could be occurring. The next update from INSIVUMEH later today will give a better picture.

Fuego's seismic signal this morning (FG3 station, INSIVUMEH)

During the past days, activity had been dominated by frequent small to medium strombolian explosions that eject abundant lava up to about 150 m above the vent, ash plumes up to 1 km high, shock waves felt in up to 10-12 km distance and continuing weak lava effusion on the upper southern flank. Its length yesterday was estimated about 200 m.

Nevado del Huila (Colombia): A small increase in volcanic-tectonic earthquakes was noted by INGEOMINAS' volcano observatory in Popayán. A total of 138 seismic events were recorded over the past week, out of 112 were volcanic-tectonic quakes and the remaining 26 events related to fluid movements inside the conduits (long-period quakes and one tremor pulse).

Two earthquakes above magnitude 3 occurred on 17 and 19 January,, the latter (mag. 3.4) was felt in the village of Sin Candela and areas of Paez (Cauca).

Machin (Colombia): The volcano continues to be at yellow alert (one of 6 in Colombia) as seismic activity remains elevated, but at low energy levels.

Galeras (Colombia): Pasto volcano observatory reports in its weekly update persistent low levels in number and energy of seismic events, no new explosions. Two small volcano-tectonic earthquakes occurred on 15 and 20 January with magnitudes of 2.3 and 2.4 on the Richter scale.

Nevado del Ruiz (Colombia): No major changes have occurred over the past week. The volcano produces intense degassing, with steam/gas plumes rising up to 2.5 km above the crater. Seismic activity has remained similar to past weeks at fluctuating low to medium levels.

Current seismic signal from Nevado del Ruiz volcano (OLL station, INGEOMINAS)

Most seismic activity observed is related to internal rock fracturing (volcano-tectonic), but there are also weak pulses of tremor and earthquakes associated with internal fluid movements and the degassing.

Cumbal (Colombia): Seismic unrest at weak energy levels continues. 5 small earthquake swarms were recorded over the past week, the most prominent having 213 events up to a maximum of magnitude 1.9 during 5 hours on 19 Jan. Most quakes are associated with rock fracturing at shallow depths (3 km) beneath the La Plazuela crater. Pasto reports no unusual surface activity at the volcano.

Sotará (Colombia): Popayán volcano observatory reports no changes at the volcano, which continues to show weak seismic unrest.

Complete Earthquake list (worldwide) for January 22, 2014.

- Volcano Discovery.

FIRE IN THE SKY: Bright Fireball Lights Up The Night Skies Over Puerto Rico!

January 22, 2014 - PUERTO RICO - A brilliant fireball was seen yesterday from Puerto Rico and was observed from all around the Caribbean Island.

Lunar Meteorite Hunters/Google Earth.

"It was so bright that the intense light saturated our sky cameras", reports Eddie Irizarry from Sociedad de Astronomia del Caribe. Irizarry says the huge meteor can be seen illuminating his backyard and personal observatory at the end of a video. Images also show a smoke trail left behind by the small space rock, which took several seconds to dissipate.

WATCH:  Meteor over Puerto Rico.

- Lunar Meteortie Hunters.

INFRASTRUCTURE & SOCIETAL COLLAPSE: New Blast Of Cold Air Blamed For Wisconsin Coal Train Derailment, As Temperatures Plunge In The U.S. Northeast And Midwest - Nobody Injured In the Accident!

January 22, 2014 - UNITED STATES - A new blast of cold air that hit the Northeast and the Midwest on Sunday won't be as biting as the cold that kicked off January, but it was bad enough to cause the derailment of a coal train in Wisconsin.

State officials say the extreme cold caused 19 rail cars carrying coal to derail Sunday in Caledonia, Wis.

As millions of Americans were bracing for another chill after a relatively warm — albeit short — hiatus, Wisconsin officials were investigating cracks in the track near Caledonia, in the southwest part of the state, where 19 cars of a 135-car Union Pacific train heading to Wyoming ran off the rails.

Nobody was injured in the accident, which happened about 7:30 a.m. (8:30 a.m. ET), state Railroad Commissioner Jeff Plale told NBC station WTMJ of Milwaukee. But 5-Mile Road will be closed indefinitely as Union Pacific and state environmental crews clean up the scene, police said.

"In this brutally old weather, sometimes tracks get brittle, and this is what happened here," Plale said.

Although temperatures won't be as cold as during the polar vortex of a few weeks ago, the cold blast is predicted to be "a shock to the system and extremely cold," TODAY's Dylan Dreyer says.

A cold air mass was parked from the Northern Plains to the Upper Mississippi Valley, the Great Lakes, the Ohio Valley and the Northeast — bringing temperatures 10 to 25 degrees below average at times Tuesday through Thursday, The Weather Channel reported.

While snow fell in New England and parts of the Midwest on Saturday, accumulation won't be a debilitating problem to begin the workweek, but temperatures are due to plummet across the widespread region overnight Sunday, according to the National Weather Service.

"Maybe not as cold as that Arctic outbreak we had at the beginning of January, but still, this is significant," said Jen Carfagno, a forecaster for The Weather Channel. "We're looking at our temperatures as cold as they get when it comes to averages for the year."

"We'll certainly feel it," Carfagno said.

While leaving first lady Michelle Obama's birthday bash Saturday night, fashion designer Michael Kors told NBC News that he "went from the hottest room in the world to the coldest night ever."

But, at 25 degrees, Washington certainly wasn't the coldest it's ever been, and even though temperatures are expected drop into the teens in the coming days, the record-breaking lows that kicked off the month will likely remain untouched.

Chicago also won't be as cold. Temperatures might dip below zero, but they won't descend into the negative teens as they did at the start of January.

And Weather Channel meteorologists said Chicago wouldn't be as gusty, cutting down on the chills that make even short periods of exposure more unbearable.

While forecasters can't be certain, they warn that this latest patch of extreme cold may last through the end of January, as frigid air is pushed once again from Canada.

The Southern states will also see below-average temperatures for January, but will still sit comfortably in the 40- to 60-degree range, forecasters said. - NBC News.