Tuesday, April 22, 2014

WEATHER ANOMALIES: Strange Days - Tornado Activity In The United States At 60-Year Low As The Country Records The Third Coldest Start To A Year EVER!

April 22, 2014 - UNITED STATES - Tornado activity in 2014 so far is at its lowest level since 1953, according to the National Weather Service's (NWS) Storm Prediction Center (SPC). "2014 has likely established a new low in tornado activity through the 21st of April," according to SPC warning coordination meteorologist Greg Carbin.

Carbin also pointed out that the time gap between the worst tornadoes is also the fourth largest since 1953. "At 152 days on April 18, 2014, the span between EF-3 or stronger tornadoes is the 4th longest span... in the last 60 years," Carbin noted. The longest gap was 249 days in 2004.

The NWS defines an EF-3 (Enhanced Fujita scale) tornado as one with winds between 158 and 207 mph capable of causing "severe damage," including blowing off roofs, overturning trains, and uprooting trees.

Between 2001 and 2010, 563 Americans were killed by tornadoes, which occur 1,200 times a year on average.

Although Texas experienced the highest number of twisters per year (142 on average) between 1981 and 2010, compared to less than five in 15 Northwest and Western states, Alabama had the nation's highest annual number of tornado fatalities (6 per year), the NWS reported.

The deadliest tornado day in U.S. history was March 18, 1925 when 695 people were killed by twisters in Missouri, Illinois and Indiana. - CNS News.

US Having The Third Coldest Start To A Year On Record

US temperatures through April 23 are the third coldest on record.

 Generated by:
./ghcn.exe US23042014.txt through=0423 > US23042014_through_0423.csv

YearTDeptUS.png (688×531)

- Real Science.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVAL: Monumental Land Transformation In Wyoming - Abrupt Landslide Lurch SPLITS House In TWO; Land Subsidence Moving Fast Enough To Be Observed! [PHOTOS+VIDEO]

April 22, 2014 - WYOMING, UNITED STATES - A rapid and sudden shift in a slow-moving landslide in Jackson, Wyo., has residents rattled and experts looking for answers.

A home damaged by a landslide Friday, April 18, 2014 in Jackson, Wyo. is shown
in this aerial image provided by Tributary Environmental.
Tributary Environmental/AP Photo

The down-falling movement Friday created a fracture several feet deep in the ground beneath a house in the northwest Wyoming town in, causing it to split in two.

Workers who had been striving to stabilize the 100-feet-high hillside since early April, when town officials first noticed movement, were forced to suspend their efforts. Several other homes and businesses were also threatened by the abrupt land movement.

Officials began to notice significant land changes on April 4, and by the time the ground started shifting an inch a day by April 9, authorities were forced to evacuate 42 houses and apartments in the area.

On Friday, land shift had increased to a foot a day, with flutters of rocks and dirt continuing to stream steadily down the hill.

A house breaks apart as a slow-moving landslide in Jackson, Wyo. advances downhill on Friday, April 18. 2014.

The lurch also created surging ruptures in a road and the paved Walgreens parking lot at the foot of the hill, as well as pushing a small town water pump building about 15 feet from where it formerly stood.

Landslide specialist George Machan said at a town meeting Friday that despite the damage already caused, it is unlikely the sudden movement will cause a landslide akin to the devastation wreaked by the Oso, Wash., landslide on March 22, which killed 39 people.

Machan said geologists were still examining the cause of the ground movement and that in the meantime it is likely the earth could continue to fall, creating an ongoing threat, especially to the four homes, two apartment buildings and four businesses that lie directly below the hill in the high risk zone.

"Is it weeks, is it longer? I really don't know," Machan said. "I think it's really unpredictable how long it might take. I don't expect it to end in a day." - ABC News.

Wyoming Landslide Now Moving Fast Enough To Observe

Efforts have stopped to build a tall concrete barrier to stall part of the East Gros Ventre Butte from giving away. The incipient slide has changed from movement too slow for the naked eye to fast enough to draw a crowd. Cracks and bulges were noticed about a week ago, and a small part of northwest Jackson was evacuated (Budge Drive). Rain, snowmelt, and human activities at the toe of the slide and also on it are blamed for situation. Today and Tuesday rain will move into the valley - Jackson Hole.

Rockfall on Budge Drive draws a crowd Thursday as the creeping cliff continues its path downhill. Crews
were working to install a barrier wall along the road when increased activity forced them to stop.


For years roads, homes and businesses have slowly crowded the base of the landmark butte and begun to climb onto it. Busy U.S. Highway 89 (West Broadway Ave) parallels Budge Drive 200 to 400 further to the south. Despite the proximity of the slide to the highway artery into the busy resort community, Wyoming Department of Transportation (WDOT) still thinks the slide will not come down quickly onto the highway. Some onlookers yesterday were not so sure. See the story in the Jackson Hole Daily by Ben Graham.

The mountains adjacent to Jackson, mostly backcountry and wilderness, are notable for many landslides, most of them slow movers. However, the Snake River mountain range to the southwest of town, including some sections above busy Highway 89 in Snake River Canyon and U.S. 191 east of Hoback Junction have slide areas highway users know well. The grandaddy of slides, however, is the famed Gros Ventre slide east of Kelly and Jackson Hole. It gave way in late spring of 1925, fueled by springtime conditions and perhaps a few small earthquakes.

WATCH: Wyoming landslide.


In 1996, deep in the Teton Wilderness (Gravel Creek), we camped on what turned out to be a moving landslide. We broke camp quickly and ran when cracks opened up 100 feet downslope from our tent and the downed logs began to pop and crack. The entire hill slope came down later and formed a temporary small lake. - The Wildlife News.

EARTH CHANGES: Monumental Signs Of The Times - Minnesota, Wisconsin Buried In A Foot Of Spring Snow; Record Mid-April Hard Freeze Kill Great Plains Wheat; Rare 3.2 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Rutland, England; Flooding In Northern New York Closes Some Roads And Bridges; Strong Winds Cause 2 Ships To Collide In Chesapeake Bay, Third Vessel Runs Aground; Remnants Of Cyclone Ita Cause Flooding And Cuts Power In New Zealand; Spring Flooding Leads To Landslides In Quebec, Tim Hortons Closure In New Brunswick; And Avalanche Kills Skiers In Norway!

April 22, 2014 - EARTH - The following constitutes the latest incidents of Earth changes across the globe.

Minnesota, Wisconsin Buried In A Foot Of Spring Snow
Buffalo, MN.
Stephanie Montreuil Dolman

A small, but potent April snowstorm walloped Minnesota and Wisconsin with heavy snow this week, a continuation of the harsh 2013-2014 season in the region.

The storm emerged from the northern Rockies Tuesday night and quickly developed into an energetic spring snowstorm on Wednesday.

"An April snowstorm in Minnesota and northern Wisconsin is not unusual, but the amount of snow that fell is quite rare," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson said.

The image above depicts snow reports from the snowstorm. The purple dots indicate reports of 1 foot or more of snow.National Weather Service

A trained NWS spotter reported the most snow from the storm in Isanti, Minn., where 19 inches piled up.

Insanti, Minn., was in a 50-mile-wide swath of heavy snow that extended from central Minnesota into northwestern Wisconsin. A foot or more of snow was widely reported in this heavy swath.

The swath narrowly split St. Cloud, Minn., and Minneapolis.

"Snowfall totals to nearly 20 inches is impressive, but it covered a small portion of the state," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dale Mohler.

© Accuweather.com

The storm spawned multiple accidents, delays in air travel and postponed Wednesday's Minnesota Twins baseball game.

For those weary of wintry weather in the region, the chill will linger into Friday, but the weekend will turn much warmer.

Most areas impacted by the snow will have struggle to reach the upper 40s on Friday, a solid 10 degrees Fahrenheit below normal. By the weekend, highs will rebound into the 60s and even 70s. - AccuWeather.

Record Mid-April Hard Freeze Kill Great Plains Wheat

Last Tuesday, April 15, was the coldest "Tax Day" nationwide on record. Hard freezes extended as far south as northern Texas. Mid-April snows were seen throughout the Corn Belt states. Columbus, Ohio had nearly four inches of the white stuff on Tuesday, its heaviest snowfall ever for so late in the spring season. Traces of snow were reported in the Texas Panhandle, Arkansas and Tennessee. Even northern Louisiana had a few flakes. Detroit, Michigan set a seasonal snowfall record on Tuesday.

A hard freeze in the southern Great Plains on Tuesday produced temperatures between 21 and 24 degrees at Amarillo, Dalhart, Perry and Lubbock, Texas. Near Gage, Oklahoma, one rancher reported 18 degrees. Ponca City, Oklahoma dipped to a record low of 21 degrees for April 15.

In Kansas, the nation's leading wheat producing state, already plagued by winterkill this harsh winter of 2013-14 that refuses to end and parching drought, there were reports of morning lows near 15 degrees both Monday and Tuesday. It was a frigid 13 degrees at Valentine, Nebraska.

Jointing wheat was damaged by the record cold early this past week in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, especially in those areas where the mercury plunged into the teens and lower 20s for several hours. Any wheat heading out can be at risk even at readings near 30 degrees. Fortunately, there was very little wheat heading out despite recent 90 degree temperatures in the southern Great Plains.

Up near the Canada/U.S. border, the ground is still solidly frozen and snow-covered. Temperatures dipped below zero in parts of Saskatchewan and Manitoba on Monday, April 14. The -4 degrees at Prince Albert, Saskatchewan was the 100th morning since last October with lows at zero or below, an all-time record for any winter season in modern times. Grand Forks, North Dakota had 97 days of zero readings this past winter, easily breaking the previous mark of 73 such bitterly cold mornings in 1978-79, when many climate scientists were predicting "a new Little Ice Age."

Some of our Harris-Mann farmer clients in the Dakotas, Minnesota and the Prairie Provinces of Canada may not be able to plant their 2014 crops until at least mid to late May or even early June in some cases. This means that an early frost in late August or early September would be devastating. Many farmers in the North Country may be forced into "preventive planting" by the exceptionally frigid weather conditions this winter and early spring.

Things aren't much better weatherwise in the Corn Belt states. It was 13 degrees on "Tax Day," April 15, at Spencer, Iowa, the coldest morning there ever recorded for so late in the season. Mason City, Iowa had 17 degrees on Tuesday. Scotts Bluff, Nebraska plunged to 15 degrees. Marquette, Michigan had a record low of 6 degrees. It was 5 degrees at International Falls, Minnesota. It was 10 degrees at Hibbing and 17 degrees at Minneapolis and Redwood Falls, Minnesota.

Other record lows reported on Tuesday included; Kirksville, Missouri and Mansfield, Ohio each with 21 degrees. It was 22 degrees at Toledo, Ohio and Moline, Illinois. Cleveland had 23 degrees. It was 24 degrees at Indianapolis, Chicago and Bristol, Tennessee. St. Louis reported 28 degrees and heavy frost. Memphis, Tennessee dipped to a record low of 30 degrees on April 16.

By extreme contrast, we've recently seen record warmth above the century mark in the Desert Southwest with moisture-sapping 90s in Southern California. The most severe drought in modern times lives on. There is at least a 70% chance that this huge drought pattern will push through the Midwest all the way to the western slopes of the Appalachians by July or August. (One can view our predictions for this summer nationwide and locally in North Idaho by going to YouTube and searching for Cliff Harris, Climatologist, or go to www.LongRangeWeather.com. A large 4,500 year temperature trend chart is likewise available on YouTube.) . - LRW.

Rare 3.2 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Rutland, England
 Tremors were felt at Stamford and the Deepings in Lincolnshire. Residents report houses
shaking during earthquake that was felt up to 28 miles away. Chris Jobs/AlamyOakham, Rutland.

A 3.2 magnitude earthquake near Oakham, Rutland, which was felt up to 28 miles away, is being investigated by seismologists.

The quake, triggered at a depth of 2.5 miles at 7.07am on Thursday, was recorded by the British Geological Survey (BGS), which said that its seismologists were analysing the data.

Former English rugby union player Austin Healey tweeted: "We've just had an earthquake in Oakham. The house was shaking for about 10 secs."

John Park wrote: "What the hell was that. Whole house shook about 7.07am! It was either an explosion or earthquake in Rutland. Anyone else feel it?"

Kerry Rough tweeted: "Woke me up. I thought the house was falling down." Sara Dodd, who is in Whissendine, tweeted that it "felt like an explosion but without any sound".

Another resident - identified as Ali W - wrote on Twitter: "It was different to the last one ... A massive bang rather than a shake."

She added: "I even thought a train had crashed at the back of us."

Tremors were felt in Stamford and the Deepings in Lincolnshire, among other places. "Did anyone else just feel an earth tremor in Stamford? Things just fell off my shelves," tweeted Louise Warren, posting as LingBeast. She said she felt tremors at about 7.15am.

Lawrence Green, @lawrence41green, tweeted: "Are we expecting a tsunami from Rutland water after this morning's earthquake??"

He added: "Was on my knees painting the skirting boards, very weird situation, kept a straight paint line though."

The BGS said the 28-mile distance over which the quake was felt was not unusual for an event of its size. It has so far received more than 180 reports from local people.

The agency has launched an online questionnaire to help assess the impact on the local area. It has recorded 44 earthquakes around Britain over the past 50 days, but only one - in the eastern North Sea - of a similar magnitude. Several have been around New Ollerton in Nottinghamshire, where 91 small earthquakes, the largest of 1.8 magnitude, have been recorded since mid-December. That area has a history of seismic activity related to coal mining.

"There have been no reports of structural damage from mining-induced earthquakes in the UK in the past 40 years," said the BGS, but an event of a 3.0 magnitude could be strongly felt and cause some alarm. - The Guardian.

Flooding In Northern New York Closes Some Roads And Bridges
Campsites in St. Regis Falls, NY after the dam gives out. Chad Tebeau

A state of emergency has been declared in a northern New York county after rising floodwaters caused by melting snow and rain closed several roads and bridges.

Officials in St. Lawrence County tell local media that flooding is reported in several communities along the St. Regis River, while other local waterways were being monitored for possible flooding. No evacuation plans have been issued for any towns.

Road closures are also being reported in parts of the southeastern Adirondack, including areas along the upper Hudson and Schroon rivers in Warren County, 50 miles north of Albany.

The Hudson River in the Glens Fall area is expected to crest about four feet above flood stage Wednesday, prompting the National Weather Service to issue flood warnings in effect until Thursday. - CNY Central.

Remnants Of Cyclone Ita Cause Flooding And Cuts Power In New Zealand
Tamaki Drive in Auckland was closed because of flooding. RNZ / Lisa Thompson

Thousands of people were without power throughout New Zealand's Northland and Auckland regions as a band of wild wet weather moves down the country on Thursday, Xinhua news agency reported.

The Fire Service has been inundated with calls, starting in Northland earlier on Thursday morning then moving to Auckland's North Shore and West Auckland as well as the central city.

It said high winds are causing the most damage, with many reports of trees down across roads and power lines.

About 4,000 households are without power in various areas of Auckland, mainly to the north and west of the region, Radio New Zealand reported on Thursday.

Around 30 flights in and out of Auckland Airport have been delayed or cancelled as a result of the weather. Winds have gusted up to 98 km per hour on the Harbour Bridge.

The Transport Agency said there have been reports of light flooding on some sections of the motorway network and there is debris on several rural roads in Northland and Auckland.

Several slips have been reported in capital Wellington after a night of heavy rain and occupants were forced from two properties in Oriental Bay on Wednesday night due to a mudslide. - Bernama.

Spring Flooding Leads To Landslides In Quebec, Tim Hortons Closure In New Brunswick
Sherbrooke Flooding QMI Agency

The spring thaw and steady rain triggered floods that inundated Quebec towns, washing away homes, forcing evacuations and causing a landslide.

In Sherbrooke, Que., in the Eastern Townships, the Saint-Francois river reached a record 25 feet Wednesday and floodwaters cut the city in two.

Firefighters rang doorbells just after midnight on Wednesday and asked 480 people to leave their homes, bringing the total number of displaced people to 632.

Downtown streets flooded and quickly froze in Sherbrooke as morning temperatures neared -10 C.

The situation was also precarious in Saint-Raymond, Que., east of Quebec City. Torrential rains caused the Saint-Anne River to rise at breakneck speed on Tuesday evening, flooding the downtown core. Mayor Daniel Dion told QMI Agency that 300 people were told to leave their homes.

In Lac-Des-Seize-Iles, Que., north of Montreal, a landslide collapsed most of a lakeside hill, carrying away three unoccupied cottages as well as boathouses. No one was injured.

In the town of Sussex, N.B., residents had to go without their morning cup of coffee as photos and videos showed a local Tim Hortons surrounded by rising flood waters. - Toronto Sun.

Strong Winds Cause 2 Ships To Collide In Chesapeake Bay, Third Vessel Runs Aground
Two vessels collided in a main shipping channel and a 751-foot cargo ship ran aground in the lower Chesapeake Bay on Tuesday in high winds gusting up to 70 mph, the Coast Guard said.

The 79-foot rig vessel Petite and the 1,065-foot container ship MSC Charleston collided about 7:30 p.m. Tuesday "due to weather" in the Thimble Shoal Channel, the Coast Guard said in a news release. There were no reports of injuries, damage or pollution and both vessels were safely anchored, the release said.

About an hour after the collision, the 751-foot bulk carrier Ornak, anchored at the Lynnhaven Anchorage east of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel, ran aground near First Landing State Park, the Coast Guard said. There were no reports of injuries, damage or pollution from the grounding, and the vessel was not blocking other water traffic, said Coast Guard spokesman Petty Officer First Class Brandyn Hill.

Winds gusting to 70 mph at Cape Henry caused 12 ships anchored in the vicinity of Lynnhaven to drag anchor, the Coast Guard said. The Virginia Pilot office dispatched 11 pilots and local tug boat companies were recruited to help stabilize the vessels and to aid others struggling in high winds to stay moored, the news release said. - AP.

Avalanche Kills  Skiers In Norway
Norwegian police say rescuers have found the bodies of four skiers who were killed by an avalanche in central Norway.

The four men were reported missing late Monday after skiing off-piste in the Sunndalsfjella mountains.

Local police spokesman Alf Stormo says search and rescue efforts were hampered by bad weather but the skiers were found early Wednesday through their tracker beacons.

Stormo says the victims, all Norwegians, were experienced skiers in their 20s and 30s. - Yahoo.

FIRE IN THE SKY: Meteor Fireball Spotted Over Tucuman, Argentina - Witnesses Take To Social Media About The Event!

April 22, 2014 - ARGENTINA - An alleged meteor fireball passed through the Argentinian sky during the morning, causing surprise and amazement among those who were able to observe the phenomenon.


The incident occurred just after 7am local time, with witnesses writing on social networks about the event.

Apparently, and as seen in the picture, it was a small object - up to one centimeter- that due to the speed with which it enters the earth, burns and vaporizes, causing a large luminosity. - La Gaceta. [Translated]