World weather news

World weather news, August 2014

Heavy rain, thunderstorms and even a tornado hit parts of Istanbul, Turkey. The tornado, which started as a waterspout, moved inland dealing damage to parts of the Golden Horn and Eminonu districts of the city. Meanwhile, other parts of the city that were spared by the tornado had to deal with flash flooding as a thunderstorms rolled through the city Saturday afternoon into Saturday night.
A large ridge of high pressure over eastern Russia has brought extreme heat to areas from Poland eastward through the Baltic states, Belarus and Ukraine. Temperatures ranging from 5-10 degC above normal were common for several days in many locations. In fact, some of the most extreme heat was felt from Belarus into Latvia and Lithuania. Here record high temperatures were set, including the all-time record high in Latvia. The record was initially broken on Sunday 3rd as the temperature reached 36.7C in Ventspils. Only 24 hours later, that record was replaced with a new one as the mercury reached 37.8C in Ventspils.
Four people have been killed and 20 others injured after a flash flood tore through a festival in northern Italy. Reports from the scene talk of panic as a mud-filled torrent swept people away late on Saturday night at the festival at Refrontolo, north of Venice. The event, by an old mill house beneath a waterfall, was meant to celebrate and promote the attractions of the area. But during the festivities, there was a burst of very heavy rain and a wall of water suddenly ripped through the area. Other villages in the area were also affected by landslides caused by the rain, reports say.
At least one person has died in Sweden amid the nation's largest wildfire in over 40 years. The fire which is has burned more than 37,000 acres had been aided by recent dry and unseasonably hot weather. The region has averaged less than 25 mm of rain over the past month. Along with the rainfall deficit, temperatures continued to soar on Tuesday. The high temperature reached 34.7C in Sala, where the normal high temperature is close to 21C this time of the year.
Norway is in the midst of a wetter than normal start to August. Oslo picked up 70.4 mm of rain during the first five days of August, which is nearly 75 percent of what typically falls through the entire month.
A rare tropical storm battering Hawaii has already caused power blackouts and blocked roads on one island, but no deaths have been reported. Iselle made landfall early on Friday morning on the chain's Big Island, shortly after it was downgraded from hurricane to tropical storm. But Hurricane Julio, a Category 3 storm with winds of more than 120 mph, is about 1600 km away. Hawaiian officials have urged residents to stock up on emergency supplies. The last cyclone to hit Hawaii, Hurricane Iniki in 1992, killed six and caused $2.4bn (1.4bn) in damage. Iselle was weakening as it hit the terrain of the eastern-most island of Hawaii.
Police in Bosnia-Herzegovina are searching for two people swept away during the second bout of torrential rainfall since May, when the Balkans were hit by the worst floods in more than a century. The body of a woman was recovered on Thursday from the muddy bank of a river in northwestern Bosnia, and two people were listed as missing, police said. The country suffered almost 2bn (1.6bn) worth of damage to homes, infrastructure and industry in May, when heavy rains caused rivers to burst their banks, sweep away roads and bridges and set off hundreds of landslides. More than 20 people died in Bosnia and more than 60 in Serbia. There were similar scenes, on a lesser scale, this week in Bosnia and parts of Serbia, where a man drowned in his cellar on Tuesday.
Tropical Storm Halong was declared a post-tropical cyclone Monday morning (Japanese time) over the Sea of Japan after a long trek that took it past Guam before later dumping record rainfall amounts on Japan. The Japan Meteorological Agency issued an "emergency weather warning" for Mie Prefecture over the weekend. The maximum reported rainfall occurred in Yanase, Kochi Prefecture, on Shikoku. The site recorded 1,081 mm of rain in the 72-hour period ending at 12:30 p.m. JST Sunday 10th, including a remarkable 862 mm of rain in just 24 hours. According to Japan's National Institute of Informatics, the 24-hour total in Yanase ranks among the 10 greatest 24-hour rainfall amounts on record since JMA's high-resolution observation network was deployed in the mid-1970s. Halong made its first landfall just after 6 a.m. JST on the 10th, as a typhoon with maximum sustained winds of 75 mph near the city of Aki, Kochi prefecture, on the island of Shikoku. Around that time, the observatory at Cape Muroto, which sits on a high exposed bluff on the Pacific Ocean side of Shikoku, recorded a 94-mph sustained wind with a gust to 117 mph. After crossing the Seto Inland Sea, Halong made a second landfall shortly after 10 a.m. JST on Sunday as a tropical storm near the similarly-named city of Ako, Hyogo prefecture, on the island of Honshu, Japan's largest island. Ako is 45 miles west of Kobe. Maximum winds were pegged at 70 mph during this second landfall.
Commuters across the Northeast USA woke to widespread flash flooding after intense storms rumbled through Tuesday night and into Wednesday morning dumping over 13 inches of rain across the Long Island area. The flash flooding proved deadly as one fatality occurred early Wednesday morning during an accident caused by the high water levels on the Long Island Expressway according to the Associated Press. Islip, New York, received an overwhelming record of 13.27 inches of rain Tuesday night through Wednesday morning. The total eclipsed what the area usually receives over the course of an entire summer - 11.68 inches.
Although no longer a tropical system, remnants of former Hurricane Bertha slammed portions of the United Kingdom and Europe from the weekend into Monday. Around 80 sailing dinghies were hit by a storm east of Northern Ireland Monday after forcing a massive water rescue. The dinghies were competing in the GP14 World Championship Races at the time of the mass capsizing. Tornadoes were reported across France and Belgium on Sunday. One tornado near Marbay, Belgium injured dozens of people when a structure collapsed at a flea market. Another tornado damaged several roofs and uprooted trees in the municipality of Thuin. Heavy rains battered Tournai and Mouscron leading to flooding of homes and roadways Sunday afternoon.
A train has derailed at the top of a gulley after running into a landslide near the Swiss ski resort of St Moritz. Eleven people are reported to have been injured and taken to nearby hospitals by helicopter. The landslide happened after heavy rain in eastern Switzerland overnight. The accident comes amid unusually bad weather for the month of August, normally a popular time for tourists
Four more bodies have been found buried under mud in Nepal, pushing the death toll from landslides and flooding to 89, with 109 people still missing. Torrential rain last week stranded thousands of villagers and sparked fears of a cholera outbreak. Media reports on Sunday said several districts in the northern Indian states of Bihar and Uttar Pradesh were also flooded after heavy rain near
A long-lived and intense thunderstorm dumped hail that ended up being measured in feet in some parts of Mexico City Sunday afternoon and evening. City tunnels and roadways became impassable in some locations and emergency workers were forced into action to free vehicles and open roads. Heavy equipment was needed to clean up the hail, similar to the clean-up efforts needed after a blizzard. Mexico City sits at an elevation of roughly 7,000 feet which creates conditions where intense storms can run through the city, dropping heavy rains and even hail. Unique to Sunday's storms was the extreme amount of hail that pounded the area. There were reports of hail stacking to the point where ploughs had to shovel the roads in efforts to make them clear.
Rain-sodden slopes collapsed in torrents of mud, rock and debris on the outskirts of Hiroshima city on Wednesday, killing at least 36 people and leaving seven missing. Hillsides were swept down into residential areas in at least five valleys in the suburbs of the western Japanese city after heavy rains left slopes unstable. The land collapsed rapidly at multiple locations, with evacuation advice arriving an hour after the first mudslide, said Kenzo Kanayama, the city's disaster management chief. "We misjudged the situation. It was too late," he said.
A wave of low pressure brought torrential rain central and southern South Korea from Sunday night into Monday. Rainfall averaged 50-100 mm across the southern half of South Korea with isolated amounts over 250 mm. Some of the heaviest rain was reported around Busan and Changwon where widespread flooding has been reported. At least one person has died with widespread evacuations and rescues reported across the region.
Three flood rescues have been carried out in northern New South Wales as rain inundates the region, causing flash flooding and concerns that one community may be cut off. State emergency service volunteers helped a woman stuck in her vehicle in floodwater in Ballina on Wednesday night. Not long afterwards a couple were led to safety after their car was stuck in floodwaters at Marom Creek, west of Ballina, according to the SES. On the mid-north coast a minor flood warning is in place for the Bellinger, Orara and Hastings rivers. Toormina, near Coffs Harbour, recorded 110mm of rain in the 24 hours to 9am on Wednesday.

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Last updated 28 August 2014.

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