Sunday, January 17, 2016

PLAGUES & PESTILENCES: The Ebola Virus - New Case Emerges In Sierra Leone, Hours After WHO Declares Outbreak Over!

The Ebola outbreak killed almost 4,000 people in Sierra Leone

January 17, 2016 - SIERRA LEONE - Sierra Leone officials have confirmed a death from Ebola, hours after the World Health Organization declared the latest West Africa outbreak over.

The country was declared free of the virus on 7 November, and the region as a whole was cleared when Liberia was pronounced Ebola-free on Thursday.

Tests on a person who died in northern Sierra Leone proved positive, an Ebola test centre spokesman told the BBC.

The WHO has warned, however, that more flare-ups are expected.

The Sierra Leone death occurred earlier this week.

Ebola test centre spokesman Sidi Yahya Tunis told the BBC that the patient had died in the Tonkolili district. He had travelled there from Kambia, close to the border with Guinea.

The tests were conducted by British health experts. The BBC's Umaru Fofana in the capital Freetown said health officials were now urgently seeking those who had come into contact with the victim.

Close to 4,000 people have died of Ebola in Sierra Leone, and 11,000 people across the region, since December 2013.

Liberia was the last country to see the end of active transmission of Ebola. But it had been declared clear twice before, only for the infection to re-emerge.

A country is considered free of human-to-human transmission once two 21-day incubation periods have passed since the last known case tested negative for a second time.

 - BBC.

Tracking the EBOLA Virus Outbreak


EXTREME WEATHER: Firefighters Battle Large Brush Fire In South Wichita - Associated With Loud, Mysterious Booms?!

Brush fire in south Wichita. © Justin Provence

January 17, 2016 - KANSAS, UNITED STATES - Wichita firefighters have contained a large brush fire Saturday afternoon on the city's south side.

Crews were called around 3 p.m. to a fire the area of South Hydraulic and the Kansas Turnpike.

Dispatchers said they received several reports that the fire was spreading within a row of evergreen trees near a neighborhood.

Fire in Wichita

Crews were able to keep the flames from spreading to any homes and had the fire under control about 30 minutes later.

Firefighters remained on scene through the afternoon.

No injuries have been reported.

There's no word yet on what caused the fire.


INFRASTRUCTURE COLLAPSE: Two Military Helicopter Collides Off Hawaii Coast - At Least 12 Marine Corps Feared Dead!

January 17, 2016 - HAWAII, UNITED STATES - The US Coast Guard is carrying out a search and rescue operation after two Marine Corps transport helicopters collided in mid-air and crashed in the waters north of the island of Oahu.

"The aircraft are from Marine Heavy Helicopter Squadron 463, Marine Aircraft Group 24, 1st Marine Aircraft Wing from Marine Corps Base Hawaii," the US Marine Corps said in a statement.

The helicopters were reportedly on a night-time training mission.

Rescuers arrived to the scene just after midnight local time, after multiple reports of the crash some 2.5 miles northwest of the coastal settlement of Haleiwa. They found debris, an empty life raft and fire on the water.

No survivors or bodies have been located so far.

“The Coast Guard is conducting search and rescue operations,” USMC spokesman Major Christian Devine said in a statement.

The Marine Corps can confirm there is an active search and rescue for 2 CH-53's of the coast of Oahu.
Twitter: U.S. Marines

By mid-day Friday, US Navy destroyers Gridley and John Paul Jones joined the Coast Guard cutter Kiska in search and rescue efforts, assisted by a MH-64 Dolphin helicopter from the Coast Guard Air Station Barbers Point, officials said. A Coast Guard C-130J taking part in the search had to return to base after it was struck by a bird, Coast Guard spokesman Lt. Scott Carr told the Marine Corps Times.

The USMC has asked the public not to touch any debris that might wash ashore and respect the cordons set up by police and firefighters.

© Google maps

The two helicopters were stationed at the USMC facility at Kaneohe Bay, and each had six people on board, according to Chief Petty Officer Sara Mooers of the Coast Guard.

The search and rescue operation could be hampered by waves forecast to reach up to 40 feet (12 meters) high - predicted to be the largest swells of this year's season.

According to the USMC, the 463rd squadron flies Sikorsky CH-53E Super Stallion helicopters, which entered service in the 1980s. - RT.

RATTLE & HUM: Mysterious Sounds Heard Across The Planet - Loud Booms, Violent Home Shaking Reported In Wichita, Kansas Area?!

© Kansas Leadership Center

January 17, 2016 - KANSAS, UNITED STATES - Sedgwick County emergency dispatchers report receiving numerous reports of explosions from various locations around Wichita Saturday.

Those calls began coming in at 1 p.m. They came from citizens at:
  • 5400 Block of S. Santa Fe
  • 1100 Block of E. 31st Street S.
  • 5100 block of S. Ash
  • 1900 block of E. Pine Bay
Several viewers sent KSN emails saying they heard a loud boom and felt their homes shake. One viewer who lives near Hillside and Mt. Vernon in southeast Wichita said in an email, "At 1:00 p.m. we felt the house shake violently accompanied by a loud bang. Everything looks fine, but we wonder what it was."

WATCH: Reports of booms in Wichita.

A person who lives in Haysville also reported the incident. "Shaking of house loud boom sound around 1 p.m. Forest Ct. in Haysville." A KSN viewer in Derby reported hearing a loud boom followed by the shaking of her house at about 1:02 p.m. A Derby viewer said she spoke with a friend near 47th Street South and Broadway who also heard what sounded like an explosion. Another viewer who lives in the 3300 block of S. Oak St. wrote asking if there had been an earthquake at 1:05 p.m.

It appears the boom was not an earthquake since no earthquakes were recorded in Kansas or Oklahoma by the US Geological Survey at the times the booms were heard. "I was told that we could contact command post about what people heard," says McConnell Airman First Class Christopher Thornbury. "And, they don't have any information on that event. Nobody at the base has knowledge at this time of what it could have been."

KSN asked a McConnell spokesperson if it could have been a "sonic boom" from an airplane. He said no one there knows what caused the booms. While it remains a mystery, what caused the questionable sound has a lot of people wondering. "Just made you wonder what it could be. I wasn't sure what in the world could make the house shake like that besides an earthquake, and they were saying it's not, and I'm like, okay, well then what was that?" said Wichitan, Aimee Brown.

Emergency dispatchers also told KSN News Westar Energy reports the company has had no power outages. That was confirmed by a visit to the company's online power outage map. Police and firefighters dispatched to the various locations reported to dispatchers uncovered no signs of any explosions or fires. - KSN.

SIGNS IN THE HEAVENS: Weather Phenomena - Rare Full Circle Rainbow Appears In The Skies Over Greenville, South Carolina!

This extremely rare full circle rainbow appeared over Greenville, North Carolina and was captured by Brad Hudson

January 17, 2016 - SOUTH CAROLINA, UNITED STATES - Yes it's possible to see them... when you are just up high!

This was the case of Brad Hudson, owner of The City Arborist in Greenville, SC.

When sunlight and raindrops combine to make a rainbow, they can make a whole circle of light in the sky.

But it's a very rare sight.

This rare sky phenomenon was captured on January 16, 2016.

Sky conditions have to be just right for this, and even if they are, the bottom part of a full-circle rainbow is usually blocked by the horizon.

That's why we see rainbows not as circles, but as arcs across our sky.

If you could get up high enough, you'd see that some rainbows continue below the horizon seen from closer to sea-level.

Brad Hudson with The City Arborist, LLC, a Greenville tree care company was at a 400-foot elevation when he snapped the full circle rainbow.

WATCH: In 2014, a perfect rainbow circle was filmed from the Skylon Tower Revolving restaurant at Niagara Falls, Ontario:

- Strange Sounds.

EXTREME WEATHER: Twisters Lay Waste To Florida Homes - At Least Two People Killed; Widespread Devastation! [PHOTOS + VIDEOS]

January 17, 2016 - FLORIDA, UNITED STATES - At least two people have died after severe thunderstorms ripped through the state of Florida.

Sarasota County appears to have bore the brunt of Mother Nature’s fury as Tampa’s WTSP reports how four tornadoes struck the area early Sunday morning.

Major Storm damage in Sarasota
Twitter: Eagle 8 HD Photo

Twitter: Eagle 8 HD Photo

Twitter: Eagle 8 HD Photo

Twitter: Eagle 8 HD Photo

The heavy rains and strong winds came on the back of a Saturday storm warning from the National Weather Service.

Forecasters initially appeared to underestimate the “slight risk” of wild weather before issuing a warning about multiple tornadoes.

Slight risk of severe storms over FL late tonight/Sun morning; make sure you have a way to get warnings overnight!
Twitter: NWS Southern Region

5:40am CST 0027 tornado watch 4..., , 
Twitter: NWS SPC 

A man and a woman were killed after powerful winds destroyed a mobile home in Duette, Manatee County, BayNews9 reported.

Storm damage @ Crystal Sands on Check out the pool wall made of cement blocks destroyed @SNNTV
Twitter: KellyRitenourSNN

Twitter: KellyRitenourSNN

Four children were also injured in the collapse.

Images of badly damaged homes and condominiums have been shared across social media showing the destruction caused by winds of up to 70 mph.

- RT.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: Possible "MeteoTsunami" Occurred In Southwest Florida - As A Powerful Storm System Cause Widespread Property Damage And A Tornado! [PHOTOS]

January 17, 2016 - FLORIDA, UNITED STATES - A tsunami struck the city of Naples, Florida Sunday morning, although this particular kind of tsunami, called a “meteotsunami,” did not bring the widespread damage and devastation normally associated with tsunamis, WZVN (Naples) is reporting.

Naples, a city of about 20,000 people on the Gulf Coast, was heavily battered by a strong storm system that moved through southwest Florida Saturday night and Sunday morning, spawning at least two confirmed tornadoes, according to The Weather Channel.

Car destroyed by fallen tree in Naples during storm. 9th Ave S and 4th St S @Fox4Now
Twitter: Mark Jackman

Street sign down in Naples from this morning's storm. Off of Golden Gate Pkwy @Fox4Now
Twitter: Mark Jackman

At the Naples Zoo and Caribbean Gardens, according to WBBH (Fort Meyers), high winds damaged structures at the park. Fortunately, the animals were all safe and accounted for, with no injuries.

Besides causing widespread property damage and spawning a tornado, Sunday’s storms also spawned an unusual weather event in Naples: a “meteotsunami.”

Unlike regular tsunamis, which are spawned by geological events (such as earthquakes) or impact events (such as a landslide or a meteor impact), meteotsunamis are generated by weather events – usually hurricanes, but also thunderstorms, such as the Naples meteotsunami.

Meteotsunamis occur when air pressure disturbances brought on by fast-moving weather systems over the ocean churn up waves. These waves then travel at the same speed as the storm system itself – as high as 80 miles per hour. Theoretically, a meteotsunami’s “deep water speed” can reach up to 455 miles per hour.

Meteotsunamis can be just as devastating as regular tusnamis, however. In 2008, a meteotsunami churned up by Hurricane Ike completely destroyed Galveston, Texas’ Bolivar Peninsula.

A “meteotsunami” churned up by Hurricane Ike destroyed Galveston’s Bolivar Peninsula. [Image courtesy of Fema via Wikimedia Commons by Public Domain]

In Naples, Sunday’s meteotsunami came right at high tide, bringing widespread coastal flooding to the city. Water level readings show that the meteotsunami brought the water level to seven feet – six feet higher than a normal high tide.

Per NWS possible "meteotsunami" in Naples earlier as tor warned storm moved in, check out sharp water level rise!
Twitter: Jim Dickey

Though Naples has been battered hard by Sunday’s storm, the tsunami does not appear to have brought the complete and utter devastation that can sometimes be associated with such events.

Elsewhere in southwest Florida, Sunday’s storm system knocked out power to over 100,000 homes. In nearby Duette, two people – a husband and wife – were killed when their mobile home was destroyed.

Steven Wilson and Kate Wilson were pronounced dead at the scene; a third adult, as well as four children, living at the mobile home were all taken to area hospitals to be treated for what are believed to be non-life-threatening injuries.

Neighbors are sifting through the rumble on Albritton road for any of the Grandparent's valuables
Twitter: Lynden Blake

The two adults are the first tornado-related fatalities in Florida since 2012, when Tropical Storm Debby spawned tornadoes that killed at least seven people.

In Sarasota, the storm damaged 45 homes and caused an estimated $3 million in property damage. In Siesta Key, winds up to 70 miles per hour damaged a condominium development; fire crews were seen going door to door on Sunday morning, making sure residents were safe and accounted for.

According to the National Weather Service, meteotsunamies, such as the one that strung Naples, are rare but not unheard-of in Florida, and have been known to strike The Sunshine State a few times per year. - Inquisitr.

EXTREME WEATHER: Seeing Red - Sand Storm Sweeps Across Libyan City! [PHOTOS]

Twitter: Ahmed Sanalla

January 17, 2016 - LIBYA - The port city of Tobruk on Libya’s eastern Mediterranean coast near Egypt has turned red, as a dust storm has smothered the area, according to reports on social media.

Social media users have posted images of the spectacular sight online:

Dust and sand storms are one of the most extreme weather phenomena that affect Libya. Common in the Sahara desert and other arid and semi-arid regions around the world, they are produced when a strong and turbulent wind lifts large quantities of dust or sand into the atmosphere.

Winds of up to 30 miles per hour (48 kph) are forecast for the area tonight and tomorrow with a drop to 17 miles per hour (27 kph) expected on Tuesday.

Twitter: Ahmed Sanalla

Twitter: Ahmed Sanalla

Twitter: HeMa El-wirshfani

Twitter: Gihan Badi

Twitter: Gihan Badi

Such storms are more frequent in Libya between January and June.

Red dust storms can increase air pollution to “very high levels” and aggravate breathing problems. Health professionals warn the dust may irritate lungs and cause flare ups in asthma.

Saharan dust, however, can prove beneficial to the environment. Trees and plants in the Amazon Rainforest rely on the nutrient-rich dust, which helps keep the area fertile, according to the New Scientist. - RT.

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: Peru's Ubinas Volcano Erupts - Emitting 3km High Smoke Ash Cloud!

Peru's Ubinas volcano

January 17, 2016 - PERU - Peru's Ubinas volcano erupted on 15 January at 12.53pm local time (7.53am GMT), emitting smoke and ash that affected seven nearby towns.

The volcano spewed an ash cloud some 9,842ft (3km) high, according to the scientists who monitor the volcano.

Volcanologists from the Volcanology Southern Observatory said the ash spread south and southeast some six miles (9.65km), affecting seven surrounding towns.

Scientists expect smaller eruptions of smoke and ash to continue throughout the day.

Just days earlier, a team of volcanologists had ascended Ubinas to study the crater and take readings.

After being dormant for several years, the volcano has become increasingly active since September 2013.

The Ubinas volcano is in Peru's Moquegua department, 776 miles south of Lima.

WATCH: Ubinas volcano erupts.



- IBT.

ANIMAL BEHAVIOR: Migratory Patterns And Disaster Precursors - Arctic Redpolls Bird Invade The Southeast Of Idaho?!


January 17, 2016 - IDAHO, UNITED STATES - With a group of 20 small birds attacking the seeds on the birch trees at Beaver Dick Park, seeds littered the snow turning it into a tan brown carpet.

"Common Redpolls," I thought as I got out of the truck for a closer look. They moved a little higher in the trees, but did not stop their eating in the bitter cold of a minus 12 degrees.

This winter is the first time I had seen flocks of them since the winter of 2012-2013 when they invaded most birch trees in the Upper Snake River Valley. While following big game migrations from the mountains two weeks ago, I found a small flock on the desert, north of the St. Anthony Sand Dunes. They have also been recorded in Ashton and on the Rexburg and Howe Christmas Bird Counts. In the last few days they have been visiting my backyard to feed on Niger seeds.

Common Redpolls are an Arctic breeding bird with most of their summer range above the Arctic Circle. They are not migratory, but are one of the irruption species, meaning they move to find food.
At times they will join mixed flocks of other finches in their movements and are usually seen with American Goldfinch and Pine Siskins. Their irruptions usually coincide with a successful breeding season followed by winter food storage in Canada and Alaska.



When birch and alder trees fail to produce large amounts of catkins for the redpolls' winter food they head south in large numbers. Three years ago flocks from 30 to 100 were observed along the highways of southeastern Idaho. Most observed redpolls are singles or small groups mixed with other wintering finches. Redpolls have several interesting habits and adaptations. One is they have a sac inside their throat area where they store seeds. During the winter they may knock seeds off plants, swoop down, store the food in these sacs, then fly to a more secluded area to shell and eat seeds. On windswept stubble fields, they may forage in waves of large flocks across the fields.

Another interesting habit for them is during cold weather they will fly from a high tree diving into the deep snow. They will then create a snow tunnel about a foot long as a roosting chamber. This allows the snow to act as insulation against the cold. Ruffed Grouse and Boy Scouts use these same techniques - though Boy Scouts shouldn't dive into the snow but dig snow caves. - East Idaho News.

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: The Fire Volcano - Mexico's Colima Volcano Erupts, Spewing Smoke And Ash 8,200 Feet High! [VIDEO]

Mexico's Colima volcano, also known as the 'fire volcano', has erupted again.

January 17, 2016 - MEXICO - Mexico's Colima or "Fire" Volcano spewed a large column of gas and ash high into a blue sky on Saturday (January 16).

The ash cloud reportedly shot more than 2,500 meters (8,200 feet) into the air.

The explosion at the volcanic crater was registered at 3:42 p.m. local time (21:42 GMT).

Located in the southwestern Mexican state of Colima, the Fire Volcano has been bursting to life since July 9 last year including three eruptions on New Year's Eve.

The Fire Volcano, officially known as the Colima Volcano, is part of the Pacific's Ring of Fire.

Mexico contains over 3,000 volcanoes, but only 14 are considered active.

Major eruptions in Mexican history have included the 1953 eruption of the Paricutin Volcano in Michoacan, the 1982 eruption of Tacana Volcano in Chiapas and the 1986 eruption of the Colima Volcano.

WATCH: Colima volcano erupts in Mexico.

- Reuters.

MONUMENTAL DELUGE: UK Village Gets Rain For 81 Days Straight - Even The Animals Are Depressed!

Fed up: Howard Lewis, 73, walks through the rain and wet fields at the centre.
© Athena

January 17, 2016 - UNITED KINGDOM - Fed-up residents in a Welsh village are holding their breath for a day of dry weather after 81 days of consistent rainfall.

People living in Eglwyswrw, Pembrokeshire, have experienced rainfall every day since October 26.

As well as dampening the spirits of locals, it has also caused problems for farmers - who have had to keep their livestock indoors.

However, while Eglwyswrw's predicament has seen it gain international headlines as well as close in on the previous record, villagers hope Saturday's predicted dry spell will be correct.

Farmer and local councillor John Davies, 52, described the rain as being as of biblical proportions.

He said: "I think everybody in the village is starting to get fed up with it now.

"The forecast for tomorrow is finally dry weather, but to be honest that's been predicted before and hasn't materialised.

"I think people would much prefer some decent weather than for the village to end up in the record books.

"It is grinding people down both physically and psychologically.

"Our sheep are pretty hardy animals but even they are looking depressed. Their fleeces are not getting the chance to dry out because of the endless rain. And I've also had to keep my cattle indoors since October.

Miserable: Cars Drive through the village of Egwyswrw.
© Athena

Howard Lewis, who runs a Shire horse centre in the village, said he had never seen the ground so saturated from rainfall.The 73-year-old added: "We've had some bad years but I can't remember it raining every day for so long.

"It's making people miserable, all we are getting is grey skies and rain."

A weather station nearby at Whitechurch has recorded at least 0.2mm of rain - to comply with the Met Office definition of a "rainy" day.

But while there has been no let-up in the rain, those living in Eglwswrw have at least escaped flood problems as the village stands 423ft above sea level.

And the tightly knit west Wales community also has a bit to go before it can claim the British record for most consecutive days of rainfall.

That was set between August 12 and November 8 1923 when it chucked it down for 89 days in Eallabus, Isle of Islay, Argyllshire, Scotland.

Met Office meteorologist Emma Sharples said the rainfall figures for the Whitechurch station were consistent with this winter's extreme rainfall.

She said: "The wind has been mild and moist from the south and south west. Warm air holds more moisture and the direction of the wind has been key - the Pembrokeshire coast is the first point at which the rain bearing clouds meet the land." - Mirror.