World weather news

World weather news, May 2017

Four people are missing after some of the worst flooding in decades in parts of Canada. In the eastern province of Quebec, police are searching for a man and a toddler who were swept away after their car swerved into a river. In British Columbia (BC), on the other side of the country, rescue crews are searching for two men, including a fire chief who went missing late on Friday. Flooding has also affected the provinces of Ontario and New Brunswick. With heavy rains persisting and waters still rising over much of waterlogged eastern Canada, the nation's military tripled the number of troops urgently working to evacuate thousands of residents Quebec's deluge has been caused by a combination of melting snow and much heavier than average spring rainfall in April and May. Federal civil servants were told to stay home on Monday to help keep roads clear for emergency vehicles. Federal government offices located in Gatineau, on the Quebec side of the Ottawa River, were closed on Monday. Flood levels in the Ottawa River are stabilising in the region though it will take several days for the water to recede to normal levels, despite light snowfall on Monday morning. David Phillips, senior climatologist with Environment Canada, said the spring rainfall in the flooded regions is historic. "We've had anywhere in eastern Canada of two to three times the (normal) amount of rain, and breaking records by a long shot," he said. Since 1 April, Montreal alone received 232 mm of rain. Mr Phillips said the average for the city is 86 mm. The previous record was 162 mm.
A severe thunderstorm hit Denver (Colorado) with large hail, causing damage and travel delays across the city. Roads looked as if they were covered in snow due to the amount of hail that fell. Hail as large as tennis balls was reported around Denver, smashing car windows, stripping trees of leaves and damaging some houses. Travellers taking to the air were also impacted by the hailstorm with over 150 flight delays reported at Denver International Airport, according to FlightStats.
Three people were killed after an avalanche struck near the French ski resort of Bonneval-sur-Arc. The avalanche struck around noon, local time, engulfing two men and one woman in deep snow. The victims were traversing the Vallonet glacier. The area had been placed under a yellow alert for avalanches due to mild weather which can destabilize the snowpack.
The official start of the eastern Pacific hurricane season is 15 May, but the first tropical system of the year has already formed. An area of showers and thunderstorms rapidly organized on Tuesday, becoming the earliest tropical depression and tropical storm on record in the eastern Pacific Ocean since reliable data began in 1966. The previous record for the earliest tropical depression was on May 12, 1990. This depression strengthened to Tropical Storm Alma on May 14. Strong winds high in the atmosphere have caused Adrian to since weaken back down to a tropical depression. A hostile environment may cause the storm to weaken further into the weekend.

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Last updated 11 May 2017.

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