Saturday, April 23, 2016

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: Sinkholes Keep Popping Up Across The United States - Several Sinkholes Appear In Portland, Oregon; Closing Roads! [VIDEOS]

April 23, 2016 - OREGON, UNITED STATES - Crews with the Portland Bureau of Transportation responded to several sinkholes in the past week, including one on Friday morning that was discovered at NE 16th and Prescott which closed the intersection for part of the day.

A hole in the road also closed part of N. Interstate Avenue near the Broadway Bridge for part of Friday. Crews discovered the hole earlier in the morning while they were repairing damage to the storm water system.

Crews also worked to repair a sinkhole at SE Milwaukie Avenue and SE Reedway.

WATCH: Sinkholes popping up in Portland, closing roads.

Dylan Rivera, the spokesperson for the Portland Bureau of Transportation, told KOIN 6 News the city averages “a few hundred sinkholes” each year.

“It could be a construction issue, could be a worn out pipe,” Rivera said.

PBOT crews and the city of Portland are investigating the cause of both sinkholes and Rivera said the wet winter with record rain in December, combined with the record-breaking heat earlier this week also contributed to the problem. The source could be anything from leaky pipes, heavy rainfall or soil disruption from utility companies installing fiber lines.

“There are a lot of causes for these small cavities in the street. Fortunately in the Portland area we don’t have that massive geological movement that’s happening in Florida and places like that. With massive sinkholes that could fit a house,” Rivera said.

He said Portland gets a few hundred small cavities each year, a minor number when compared to potholes. So far this year, the city has patched more than 7,600 potholes. - KOIN.

WAR DRUMS: Tensions Escalating On The Korean Peninsula - North Korea Launches Ballistic Missile From Submarine!

North Korean leader Kim Jong Un watches the test-fire of a strategic submarine underwater ballistic missile. KCNA / Reuters

April 23, 2016 - KOREAN PENINSULA - North Korea has conducted its third submarine ballistic missile firing, Yonhap news agency reports, citing the South Korean military. There has been no immediate report on whether the launch was successful.

A submarine-launched ballistic missile (SLBM) was fired Saturday from the Sea of Japan (also known as East Sea) water zone in the open sea direction at about 6:30 p.m. local time (0930 GMT), Seoul’s Joint Chiefs of Staff (JCS) said.

The missile flew “for a few minutes,” Yonhap agency said, citing a military source.

Seoul believes the missile launch was made to make a point in the wake of a key 7th meeting of North Korea Workers' Party in May. A congress of the ruling party has been summoned for the first time in 36 years.The first underwater launch of North Korean SLBM missile KN-11 was made on November 27, 2015, and allegedly resulted in failure.

The next try on December 21 was reported to be a success, with Pyongyang demonstrating its leader Kim Jong-un observing the launch.

The initial information about Pyongyang using an upgraded Soviet-era ballistic missile submarine to establish the naval component of the national nuclear triad emerged in 2014.

It is believed that in the early 1990s North Korea bought from Russia 10 Golf-class diesel-electric missile-capable submarines, also known as “Project 629, designed in 1950s.” It is believed that Pyongyang has made at least one of the seaworthy and now is using it for tasting a sea-based ballistic missile of its own.

The South Korean military suspects Pyongyang of preparing its fifth nuclear test in the very near future, after satellite images exposed that North Korea had resumed tunnel excavation at its main nuclear test site. A similar activity was observed there prior to the latest alleged thermonuclear test in January. - RT.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: Planetary Transformations - Cop Saves Chinese Motorists From Plunging Into Large Sinkhole! [VIDEO]

YouTube screenshot. CCTV News

April 23, 2016 - CHINA - This CCTV footage from China could have gone viral for very different reasons if it weren't for a policeman who sprung swiftly into action.

His quick reaction saved nearby drivers, who would certainly have plunged into a crater along with a section of crumbling road as it dropped suddenly in Hangzhou city, Zhejiang province.

Just moments before the two-meter-deep sinkhole appeared in the middle of a busy road, an eagle-eyed traffic cop cordoned off the cracking area with cones.

He barely avoided being run over in process himself, thanks to impatient motorists.

Security cameras captured the chaos on Thursday, which was then shared online by a local news channel.

CCTV News reports that "further investigation over the collapse is currently underway".

WATCH: Prompt action from police help drivers escape road collapse.

- RT.

GLOBAL VOLCANISM: San Cristobal Volcano Erupts In Nicaragua - As Activity Increases Along The Pacific Ring Of Fire! [VIDEO]

Twitter: Adolfo Pastran

April 23, 2016 - NICARAGUA - he San Cristobal volcano, also known as El Viejo (the old guy) is the oldest volcano in Nicaragua. Today, April 22, 2016, the volcanic peak erupted in 3 large explosions at 10:20 am, 10:22 am and 10:27 am. Volcanic unrest along the Ring of Fire.

The fire is spreading rapidly along the Ring! After Guatemala, it's now the San Cristobal volcano in Nicaragua that registered three explosions generating a plume of gas and ash.

The cameras monitoring the activity of the volcano (INETER) recorded images of the strongest explosion at 10:27 am today:

The three loud explosions were followed by a rain of ash on the communities surrounding the volcano.

In Chichigalpa residents reported a strong ashfall after the eruption.

So far, no major damage has been reported, but residents fear a continued activity of the colossus.

The Ring of Fire is increasing in activity and that could have a really bad ending!

Just be prepared for the worst case!

- Strange Sounds.


ANIMAL BEHAVIOR: Attacks On Humans And Disaster Precursors - Family Dog Kills Newborn Baby In Bed In San Diego, California?! [VIDEO]

The 44kg pit bull breed cross was impounded after biting a newborn child to death in San Diego.
County of San Diego

April 23, 2016 - CALIFORNIA, UNITED STATES - A pit bull terrier crossbreed dog lying in bed with a San Diego couple bit and killed their three-day-old son when it was startled awake.

The parents had been watching television at the time with their newborn and the 44kg (97lb) American Staffordshire terrier-Great Dane mix was lying with them, said Sergeant Tu Nguyen of the San Diego police child abuse unit.

"The mum coughed unexpectedly and it startled the dog, which bit the baby, causing traumatic injury," said Nguyen, whose unit investigates the death of any child.

"The parents were able to separate the dog from the baby and they rushed him to the hospital but they were not able to save him."

Nguyen declined to say where the baby was injured and said police were waiting for the medical examiner's report on the exact cause of death.

WATCH: Family dog mauls newborn baby to death.

The dog was taken into custody by San Diego county animal services, officials said. Any dog that bites a person is placed in quarantine by animal control, said Dan DeSousa, deputy director of the agency.

DeSousa said the family could direct animal control to euthanise the dog or they could claim the dog at the end of a 10-day quarantine, but the agency had not yet received any instructions.

The American Staffordshire is one of a number of pit-bull dog breeds recognised as dangerous and subject to various breeding and ownership restrictions in different parts of the world.

The Texas-based charity lists three previous killings of children by pit bulls in the US in 2016, and a dozen people killed in 2015.

The group campaigns against dangerous dog breeds and on behalf of victims of attacks. - Guardian.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: Planetary Transformations - 105 Potential Sinkholes Discovered In Seoul City, Korea!

A sinkhole that opened up at an apartment complex in Sindorim-dong, Guro-gu, last year. Yonhap.

April 23, 2016 - SOUTH KOREA - Seoul City has discovered 105 underground cavities after four months of high-tech ground inspection.

According to the city government Wednesday, during its inspection of 48-kilometer section of arterial roads previously connected to cave-in accidents, 105 potential sinkholes were detected.

With an additional 246-kilometer section to be scanned this year, an estimated 195 more cavities are expected be found.

The latest investigation began in the wake of February 2015's sinkhole accident in front of Yongsan train station in Seoul. 

Last year, 56 sinkholes were detected in the city.

In the safety inspection that ensued, Ground Penetration Radar-mounted vehicles scanned the surface, then a portable GPR identified the exact location of the cavity and then the ground was drilled open to check the size of the hollow space beneath.

Using this method, On March 28, the bustling road in front of Chungjeongno Subway Station's exit four was restored just in time before it sank.

Seoul City said that among the 105 detected cavities, 61 that appear to be in a critical condition will be restored by end-April. Another 35 less-severe cases will be restored by end-May. The rest that do not pose an immediate threat will be studied by urban developers to learn the cause behind the phenomenon.

According to the city government, the cavities discovered so far were around decrepit sewer pipes. The city plans to undertake their maintenance before the monsoon season.

By 2018, more than 200 billion won ($176 million) will be spent to refurbish the 437-kilometer section of the worn-out 932 kilometer pipes.

Seoul City had borrowed help from a Japanese tech firm with the GPR technology for this round's safety check. It is currently trying to develop its own GPR gadgets in collaboration with Seoul's Sejong University and the U.S.' University of Central Florida.

The city plans to repeat the GPR test every three years.

- Korea Herald.

MONUMENTAL EARTH CHANGES: Strong 5.8 Magnitude Earthquake Hits Ecuador As Recovery Efforts Continue - The Death Toll Rises Over 600; More Than 8,000 Injured; Over 1,100 Buildings DESTROYED, 800 Others Damaged; The United Nations Launch $72.7 MILLION To Assist; World Bank Pledges $150 MILLION; Total Damages Estimated At A "STAGGERING $3 BILLION"! [MAPS + VIDEO + TECTONIC SUMMARY]

USGS earthquake location.

April 23, 2016 - ECUADOR - A 5.8-magnitude earthquake has struck off the coast of Ecuador, about 16 miles west of Muisne, a town in the northwestern Esmeraldas province, the US Geological Survey (USGS) reports.

The earthquake occurred at 01:24 GMT on Saturday (20:24 p.m. local time on Friday). There were no immediate reports of damages or casualties.

On April 16, Ecuador was hit by a 7.8-magnitude earthquake, with its epicenter located near the town of Pedernales in Manabi province, which is situated south of Esmeraldas province. Over 600 people died as a result and more than 8,000 were injured.

According to the UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA), over 300 aftershocks have been registered after the quake.

USGS earthquake location.

More than 1,100 buildings have been destroyed in Ecuador and over 800 have been damaged, including more than 280 schools, according to OCHA.

Ecuador and the United Nations have launched a $72.7 million appeal to assist the country in dealing with the consequences of the 7.8-magnitude earthquake. The World Bank has agreed to allocate $150 million to Ecuador.

According to Ecuador's President Rafael Correa, the damage caused by the 7.8-magnitude earthquake is estimated at $3 billion.

USGS Seismotectonics of South America (Nazca Plate Region)

The South American arc extends over 7,000 km, from the Chilean margin triple junction offshore of southern Chile to its intersection with the Panama fracture zone, offshore of the southern coast of Panama in Central America. It marks the plate boundary between the subducting Nazca plate and the South America plate, where the oceanic crust and lithosphere of the Nazca plate begin their descent into the mantle beneath South America. The convergence associated with this subduction process is responsible for the uplift of the Andes Mountains, and for the active volcanic chain present along much of this deformation front. Relative to a fixed South America plate, the Nazca plate moves slightly north of eastwards at a rate varying from approximately 80 mm/yr in the south to approximately 65 mm/yr in the north. Although the rate of subduction varies little along the entire arc, there are complex changes in the geologic processes along the subduction zone that dramatically influence volcanic activity, crustal deformation, earthquake generation and occurrence all along the western edge of South America.

Most of the large earthquakes in South America are constrained to shallow depths of 0 to 70 km resulting from both crustal and interplate deformation. Crustal earthquakes result from deformation and mountain building in the overriding South America plate and generate earthquakes as deep as approximately 50 km. Interplate earthquakes occur due to slip along the dipping interface between the Nazca and the South American plates. Interplate earthquakes in this region are frequent and often large, and occur between the depths of approximately 10 and 60 km. Since 1900, numerous magnitude 8 or larger earthquakes have occurred on this subduction zone interface that were followed by devastating tsunamis, including the 1960 M9.5 earthquake in southern Chile, the largest instrumentally recorded earthquake in the world. Other notable shallow tsunami-generating earthquakes include the 1906 M8.5 earthquake near Esmeraldas, Ecuador, the 1922 M8.5 earthquake near Coquimbo, Chile, the 2001 M8.4 Arequipa, Peru earthquake, the 2007 M8.0 earthquake near Pisco, Peru, and the 2010 M8.8 Maule, Chile earthquake located just north of the 1960 event.

USGS plate tectonics for the region.

Large intermediate-depth earthquakes (those occurring between depths of approximately 70 and 300 km) are relatively limited in size and spatial extent in South America, and occur within the Nazca plate as a result of internal deformation within the subducting plate. These earthquakes generally cluster beneath northern Chile and southwestern Bolivia, and to a lesser extent beneath northern Peru and southern Ecuador, with depths between 110 and 130 km. Most of these earthquakes occur adjacent to the bend in the coastline between Peru and Chile. The most recent large intermediate-depth earthquake in this region was the 2005 M7.8 Tarapaca, Chile earthquake.

Earthquakes can also be generated to depths greater than 600 km as a result of continued internal deformation of the subducting Nazca plate. Deep-focus earthquakes in South America are not observed from a depth range of approximately 300 to 500 km. Instead, deep earthquakes in this region occur at depths of 500 to 650 km and are concentrated into two zones: one that runs beneath the Peru-Brazil border and another that extends from central Bolivia to central Argentina. These earthquakes generally do not exhibit large magnitudes. An exception to this was the 1994 Bolivian earthquake in northwestern Bolivia. This M8.2 earthquake occurred at a depth of 631 km, making it the largest deep-focus earthquake instrumentally recorded, and was felt widely throughout South and North America.

Subduction of the Nazca plate is geometrically complex and impacts the geology and seismicity of the western edge of South America. The intermediate-depth regions of the subducting Nazca plate can be segmented into five sections based on their angle of subduction beneath the South America plate. Three segments are characterized by steeply dipping subduction; the other two by near-horizontal subduction. The Nazca plate beneath northern Ecuador, southern Peru to northern Chile, and southern Chile descend into the mantle at angles of 25° to 30°. In contrast, the slab beneath southern Ecuador to central Peru, and under central Chile, is subducting at a shallow angle of approximately 10° or less. In these regions of “flat-slab” subduction, the Nazca plate moves horizontally for several hundred kilometers before continuing its descent into the mantle, and is shadowed by an extended zone of crustal seismicity in the overlying South America plate. Although the South America plate exhibits a chain of active volcanism resulting from the subduction and partial melting of the Nazca oceanic lithosphere along most of the arc, these regions of inferred shallow subduction correlate with an absence of volcanic activity. -

More information on regional seismicity and tectonics

- Sputnik | USGS.

GEOLOGICAL UPHEAVALS: "I Was Flabbergasted" - Giant Coral Reef Found At The Mouth Of The Amazon River, Covering 3,600 SQUARE MILES!

The mouth of the Amazon River.NASA/Public domain

April 23, 2016 - AMAZON RIVER - In their most iconic form, coral reefs are found in crystal-clear tropical waters, not the muddy mouth of a river.

In fact, Patricia Yager, a oceanographer at the University of Georgia "kind of chuckled" when a Brazilian colleague, Rodrigo Moura, suggested they search for a reef in the mouth of the Amazon, The Atlantic reports.

When their team found evidence of a reef there, she told the magazine, "I was flabbergasted, as were the rest of the 30 oceanographers."

The reef they found is more than 600 miles long and covers 3,600 square miles, they describe in a study published in Science Advances.

In parts, it's covered by the silty outflow from the Amazon River only three months of the year, so that the corals' photosynthetic symbiotes can photosynthesize at will. In large parts of the reef, though, sunlight is harder to come by, and those areas are populated by sponges and carnivorous fish.

The scientists did have a clue that they might find a something of interest in this area: Moura had found a paper from 1977 in which fish indicating the presence of a coral reef had been found in the area.

On a research cruise, the team dredged the ocean floor and came up with coral, sponges and reef fish. They had found exactly what they were looking for. - Atlas Obscura.