Friday, February 26, 2016

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: Apocalyptic Scenes As Indonesia's Mount Sinabung Erupts Again - Sending Avalanches Of Smoke As High As 9,843 Feet High! [PHOTOS + VIDEO]

Lavas and ashes rising from Mount Sinabung during an eruption in Karo, North Sumatra, Indonesia, on Feb. 25, 2016. [Photo/Xinhua]

February 26, 2016 - INDONESIA - Mount Sinabung spewing volcanic ash, seen from Gamber village in Karo district, in North Sumatra yesterday.

It is one of 129 active volcanoes in Indonesia.





The country sits on the Pacific Ring of Fire, a belt of seismic activity running around the basin of the Pacific Ocean. - Straits Times.

WATCH: Avalanches of smoke at Mount Sinabung.

GLOBAL COASTAL EVENT: Waves Reaching Up To 70-FEET HIGH Hit Hawaii - Forcing Hours-Long Closure Of Kamehameha Highway; Several Homes Damaged! [VIDEOS]

North Shore. © Clark Little/Facebook
February 26, 2016 - HAWAII - Waves with up to 70-foot faces rolled into Oahu's North Shore on Monday, forcing an hours-long closure of Kamehameha Highway and damaging homes, according to Hawaii News Now.

On Tuesday, National Weather Service officials said the swell was one of the strongest surf events in Hawaii in the last 50 years.

And, they warned, another swell is on its heels.

At least one home sustained serious damage from the waves, officials said, and they feared other homes were at risk. Officials also said surf had undermined the foundation of a lifeguard stand at Laniakea.


Waves toppled a Haleiwa home's seawall, undermined the home's foundation and washed away a tree.

Waves were also showering cars, creating hazardous driving conditions and pushing rocks onto the roadway.
Throughout Monday, residents and crews reported coastal flooding up and down the coastline, including at Laniakea and Rockpiles.

Residents compare this weeks waves to a swell in 1969, that damaged scores of homes along the North Shore.

WATCH: Giant waves seen in Hawaii.

A High Surf Warning remains in effect for the north and west shores of Niihau, Kauai, Oahu and Molokai, and the north shores of Maui and the Big Island through 6 a.m. Friday.  - Property Casualty 360.

SIGNS IN THE HEAVENS: Symbolic Weather Phenomenon - Northern Lights Take The Form Of A Phoenix Over Iceland!

These dramatic images of the aurora borealis appear to show a phoenix rising from the ground.© Hallgrimur P. Helgason/Caters

February 26, 2016 - ICELAND - What do you reckon? Is this mesmerising image up there with the best recent pictures taken of the Northern Lights?

Shot in Iceland, it shows what looks like a huge phoenix with wings outstretched rising in to the night's sky.

It was captured by photographer Hallgrimur P. Helgason in Kaldársel, who said he had been shooting for an hour when the mythical creature appeared.

'It's really a thrill shooting the aurora, especially when they are so playful like they were that night,' said the 64-year-old.

The stunning picture was taken in Iceland.
© Hallgrimur P. Helgason/Caters

'I have to admit that I always get an adrenaline kick when the lights burst out like that - that particular shot was the top one of the night.'

Hallgrimur uses a camera and tripod to photograph the lights and advises snapping in the dark away from city light pollution and never using a flash.

He said that the Northern Lights were mainly showing in green and yellow colours when he was shooting that night but also sported red and blue suggesting that the aurora was strong. - Metro.

FIRE IN THE SKY: "Seemed Very Close To The Ground" - Meteor-Fireball Spotted Over Luxembourg And France!

File photo.

February 26, 2016 - FRANCE / LUXEMBOURG - If you thought you spotted an meteor above Luxembourg on Thursday morning, you probably did.

The French Meteor Observation Network confirmed the phenomenon, which was spotted around 10:30am.

It said that the meteor travelled over the east of France between Reims and Nancy.

Social media was buzzing with comments from people who witnessed the fiery spectacle.

American Meteor Society (AMS) Event#732-2016 - 'heat map' showing location of observers.© Google/AMS

Frederick R said: "I looked out of my office window while I was on a call and clearly saw a fireball with a tail light. What struck me was that it seemed very close to the ground."

The meteor appears to have started its path above Chalons-en-Champagne, heading north-east and disappearing between Marn, Meuse and Brussels.

The phenomenon occurs when astral or comet debris travels at great speed into the earth's atmosphere. - Luxemburger Wort.

EXTREME WEATHER: 4-Inch Hail Pellets Found In Pembroke, North Carolina - Storm Left Several Homes Damaged!

© Adrienne Locklear

February 26, 2016 - NORTH CAROLINA, UNITED STATES - Large pellets of hail were found in North Carolina after a powerful storm made its way through the state.

US National Weather Service Wilmington NC shared a photo of two pieces of hail measuring about four inches each next to a ruler for comparison.

"Large hail fell in Pembroke, NC from a tornado-warned supercell in Robeson county earlier this evening - check this out!" They wrote while crediting Jason Lloyd for taking the photo.

A commenter shared a photo of seven large pieces of hail that also measured about three inches wide.

Large hail fell in Pembroke, NC.
© Jason Lloyd

The storm left several homes across North Carolina damaged as tornado warnings were announced in various parts of the state. - UPI.

DELUGE: Widespread Flooding In Jakarta, Indonesia - Roads Blocked, Traffic Problems And Some Damage To Buildings!

Flooding in the streets of Jakarta, 26 February 2016.© BPBD

February 26, 2016 - JAKARTA, INDONESIA - In Indonesia, Jakarta's Disaster Management Agency, BPBD, reported earlier today that heavy rainfall in Greater Jakarta and the surrounding areas has caused flooding across several parts of the city, causing traffic problems and some damage to buildings.

BPBD say that most of the rain fell in just one hour during the evening of 25 February 2016. In East Jakarta, the rain left flood water up to 90cm. BPBD say that around 40 people have been evacuated from their homes in Cakung.

Flooding has also been reported in areas of West and South Jakarta, and also in North Jakarta, in particular Kelapa Gading and Cilincing.

BPBD Jakarta carry out damage assessments after flooding, 26 February 2016. © BPBD

Flooding in the streets of Jakarta, 26 February 2016.© BPBD

Indonesia's Meteorology and Geophysics Agency (Badan Meteorologi, Klimatologi, Dan Geofisika - BMKG) has predicted further rain over the weekend for Greater Jakarta, surrounding areas and across many parts of Indonesia.

According to figures from WMO, Soekarno - Hatta International Airport recorded 119 mm of rain in a 24 hour period between 25 and 26 February 2016.

During the same period, Tanjung Priok saw 59 mm, Jakarta Observatory 89 mm and Serang in Banten province, about 70 km west of the capital, recorded 90 mm. - Floodlist.

EXTREME WEATHER ANOMALIES: Powerful Storm System Blows Through Lancaster County, Pennsylvania Spawning Two Tornadoes - FIRST EVER February EF-2 In State History; Dozens Of Buildings Damaged OVER A FIVE-MILE STRETCH; Amish Schoolhouse OBLITERATED; Two 600-FOOT Chicken Houses FLATTENED; $8 MILLION In Damages To At Least 50 STRUCTURES; Many Trees Uprooted; Several Cars TOSSED; Residents Say "It Was Quite UNUSUAL,... A Lot More Damage Than Expected"! [PHOTOS + VIDEO]

Aerial image of destruction left by a tornado that touched down in Lancaster County, Pennsylvania on Wednesday.
(Photo: Matt Rourke/AP)

February 26, 2016 - PENNSYLVANIA, UNITED STATES - A powerful storm that blew through Pennsylvania spawned at least two tornadoes, one that damaged dozens of buildings over a 5-mile stretch of rural Lancaster County, including homes, barns and an Amish schoolhouse obliterated by 100 mph winds.

The National Weather Service also confirmed Thursday that a tornado touched down near Wyalusing in Bradford County, where several buildings were reported damaged.

The tornado that hit eastern Lancaster County left a quarter-mile-wide swath of damage through Salisbury Township, tossing cars, uprooting huge trees and toppling 300-year-old grave markers. Two 600-foot chicken houses containing 16,000 birds were flattened, while cattle and other livestock became trapped in the rubble of collapsed barns.

Officials said the twister - classified as an EF2, meaning wind speeds fell in the 111 to 135 mph range - caused about $8 million in damage to 50 structures.

People clean up in the aftermath of a storm Thursday in Gap, Lancaster County. A tornado touched down near this area, in Salisbury Township,
Wednesday night, the National Weather Service said.
(Photo: Matt Rourke/AP)

"There had to be some real strong winds to blow these trees uphill," said Mark Friedenfeld, who is seen here making his way through some of the trees that
were knocked down on top of his York Township home following Wednesday night's storm. 
Jason Plotkin,York Daily Record

"There is a lot more damage than we expected," said White Horse Fire Chief Randy Gossert.

Hundreds of people, mostly from the Amish community, gathered at a fire station Thursday to get their cleanup and rebuilding assignments. A crew was already at work rebuilding an Amish schoolhouse, which roofer Derek Cummings said looked like had been hit by a bomb. He said it was hoped the 1,200-square-foot, one-story school could be rebuilt in a week.

Steps away from the school, as many as 200 Amish had taken refuge in a barn as the tornado passed through Wednesday night. Emergency management officials said they had no reports of deaths or injuries.

WATCH: Aerial Footage of First Ever February EF-2 Tornado in PA History.

A family that lives near a collapsed building in Lancaster County hid in their basement during the storm.

"We got alerts on our phone and it was quite unusual," Galen Huyard said. "So we hit the basement, and we stayed down there until we thought it was clear."

"We heard a gush of wind and that was about it," his wife, Caroline Huyard, said. - YDR.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: Sinkholes Keep Popping Up Across The United States - Massive Sinkhole Swallows Pickup Truck In Gilbert, Arizona! [PHOTOS + VIDEO]

Christian Wolf said he was traveling around 45 mph when his truck went into the sinkhole. (Source: KPHO/KTVK)

February 26, 2016 - ARIZONA, UNITED STATES - The man whose pickup truck was nearly swallowed by a sinkhole said he feels lucky to be alive.

A section of Greenfield Road collapsed around 10:30 p.m. Monday, forcing the closure of Greenfield between Germann and Queen Creek roads in Gilbert.

The front end of a pickup truck went into the massive sinkhole. The driver of that pickup, Christian Wolf, said he didn't see a sinkhole before the crash.

"It went in in slow motion as if I was falling down into it," Wolf explained. "I closed my eyes at first. I didn't know what else to do."

(Source: KPHO/KTVK)

(Source: KPHO/KTVK)

(Source: KPHO/KTVK)

(Source: KPHO/KTVK)

Wolf said he had to kick open the driver's side door so he could jump out.

He was shocked to see his truck was beginning to sink even further into the hole. His truck, he said, was totaled.

Wolf said he was traveling around 45 mph when he went into the hole.

WATCH: Sinkhole in Gilbert.

"I hit so hard going that fast that the whole back end whipped around," he said.

Amazingly, Wolf had only a few nasty bruises. He said he's thankful he walked away with his life.

The city of Gilbert did put out a statement saying that South Greenfield Road will be closed while crews figure out what happened and make repairs. - AZ Family.

ICE AGE NOW: Global Cooling Continues Relentlessly - Blizzard Leaves Crew Stranded On Antarctic Ice-Breaker! [VIDEOS]

© ABCScienceOnline / YouTube
February 26, 2016 - ANTARCTIC CIRCLE - A crew of 68 people remain stranded on board a polar research ship more than a day after it broke from its moorings and ran aground near Australia's oldest harbor in the Antarctic Circle.

The Aurora Australis, a 94-meter long ice-breaking ship, was ripped from its anchoring as a raging blizzard hit Mawson Station, East Antarctica, on Wednesday morning.

Efforts are being made to bring the crew back to base. However, the blizzard conditions are hampering the operation.

WATCH: Footage of icebreaker as storm moves in.

Footage recorded from inside the stricken vessel shows strong gusts of ice and snow battering the upper deck.

The incident happened as 130mph winds were recorded in the area. While the ship remains trapped in the Horseshoe Harbour, authorities say there is no immediate danger of oil seeping into the ocean.

"Sixty-eight expeditioners and crew remain on board the Aurora Australis, which remains aground... All continue to be safe and well," a government statement said Thursday.

The spokesperson for the Australian Antarctic Division added that a breach in the ship's hull has been discovered "in an area of the ship that poses no risk to the stability of the vessel or of fuel leaking into the environment".

"The crew continue to monitor the hull," they added.

The ship is capable of remaining at sea for approximately 90 days and has an average speed of 30kph. It's reinforced bow is designed to cut through pack ice up to 1.2-meters thick, which is quite rudimentary when compared with larger icebreakers.

The Aurora Australis had been carrying out marine science close to the Kerguelen Plateau region when it stopped to restock supplies at Mawson Station.

P&O Maritime Services are the registered owners of the vessel, which has been used to transport cargo and expedition teams to the Australian government's bases on the icy continent.

The company has said it could take up to three days to assess the full damage. - RT.