Update info

Updated every Friday.

Friday, October 30, 2015

October 30, 2015

What happened this week?

Mexico: Hurricane Patricia made landfall as a Category 5 hurricane on October 23, 2015 near Cuixmala, Jalisco with sustained winds of 270 km/h) On October 24, 2015, Patricia had downgraded to a Tropical Depression. So far, no major injuries or deaths have been reported. Over 50,000 people were evacuated from coastal areas prior to the storm, since then improved weather conditions have allowed much of the population to return to their homes. The federal, state, and municipal Mexican governments are conducting assessment and monitoring the situation on the ground in affected areas... Read More

United States: Flooding in the Southern Plains: Conditions over eastern Texas continue to improve. Flood waters will move down the Trinity River into Lake Livingston through the remainder of the week. Texas Emergency Operation Center (EOC) returned to Normal Operations; Louisiana State EOCs are Partially Activated. Texas National Guard is providing 105 personnel for flood response operations. No widespread/significant damage and no injuries or fatalities reported... Read More

Guatemala: Rainfall in the village of Milagro, Masagua, Escuintla: The Guacalate River overflowed. About 48 people were affected by the flooding and at least five houses suffered damage... Read More

Costa Rica: Rains, floods, and landslides affected eight communities in the Central Valley, leaving two dead, at least 7 families evacuated, and 125 reports of incidents. 77 homes were affected in the province of Heredia... Read More

  • Drought: The Ministry of National Integrity declared state of emergencies in 382 municipalities in six states, mostly due to drought. 170 in Paraíba, 150 in Ceará, and 56 in Pernambuco. Also in the cities of Bahía, Minas Gerais, and Paraná... Read More
  • Rains: The National Civil Defense is assisting 49 municipalities in Rio Grande do Sul due to heavy rains... Read More
Interesting Facts

Researchers find cascading elastic perturbation likely contributed to small earthquakes in Japan. A team of researchers with members from Los Alamos National Laboratory, MIT and the University of Tokyo, has found evidence that suggests elastic disturbance caused by one earthquake may be one of the causes of another earthquake occurring in a far distant location... Read More

What's new in Disaster Risk Reduction?

What the Nepal earthquake teaches us about disaster resilience. Catastrophic events exact massive causalities and damage, severely disrupting populations, infrastructure, economies, and the environment. How can we, as a global community, prevent or limit such adverse effects in the future?... Read More

Costa Rica joined more than 100 nations on the protection of persons displaced by disasters. Representatives of the Government of Costa Rica were part in the global intergovernmental consultation of the initiative Nansen which was held in Geneva, Switzerland, as an act of conclusion for actions that support the "Agenda for the protection of cross-border displaced persons in the context of disasters and climate change"... Read More

Friday, October 23, 2015

October 23, 2015

What happened this week?

Mexico. Hurricane Patricia weakens, but still 'extremely dangerous'.Hurricane Patricia weakened to a Category 4 storm Friday night with maximum sustained winds of 130 mph, but remained "extremely dangerous" over southwestern Mexico, the National Hurricane Center said. Patricia made landfall hours earlier as a Category 5 storm, the fiercest... Read More

Belize. An area of low pressure is still affecting the country and as the rain continues flooding is expected. The Rio Hondo River is at flood stage and rising. Emergency personnel are on standby to assist Douglas and San Antonio residents in the event of an evacuation... Read More

Guatemala. 13 of the 22 departments have been affected by the rains. CONRED reported that about 223,000 people were affected by the rains that occurred in the past five days; 442 damaged houses, evacuations have been carried out; six landslides; 10 incidents on roads associated with landslides and fallen trees, as well as the collapse of the Bailey Bridge north of the country... Read More

Nicaragua. Heavy rains from the last hours have caused flooding due to the overflowing of the Ochomogo River. At least three homes have been flooded near the tributary; authorities are conducting risk assessments and will take appropriate action. The river will continue to grow as more rain is expecte... Read More

Argentina. One dead, injuries reported after earthquake hits the northwest... Read More

United States of America. Massive mudslide causes highway disaster. Emergency crews were working to dig out head-high mounds of mud from the 58 and Interstate 5, which was also shut down as hundreds of cars were trapped in the mud Thursday... Read More

Interesting Facts

Hurricanes, Typhoons and Cyclones: Storms of Many Names. There is an old expression that a hurricane is Mother Nature’s way of telling us that she is angry. But of course hurricanes are not just a byproduct of nature’s ire... Read More

NEC Tests Landslide Simulation Technology in Rio de Janeiro. NEC Corporation (NEC; TSE: 6701), has successfully concluded a series of trials in Rio de Janeiro, Brazil, using innovative technologies and solutions to monitor the potential of natural disasters... Read More

What's new in Disaster Risk Reduction?

ACS: Climate change and the Caribbean. This debate surrounding our climate has polarized the world into two different groups for a long time; some theorists maintain that an intrinsic characteristic of climate is that it changes while a large percent of others support the theory that global warming is anthropogenic or caused by human action... Read More

The California Drought And Standards Of IoT. If we start sharing information and capabilities, and thinking more holistically, we may just be able to solve a lot more than the water problem... Read More

Friday, October 16, 2015

October 16, 2015

What happened this week?

  • Municipality of Ipiranga in the State of Parana: The Ministry of National Integration recognizes the state of emergency due to heavy rains and hail... Read More
  • State of Rio Grande del Sur: The Ministry of National Integration declared an emergency for 26 municipalities due to heavy rains, hail, and flooding... Read More
USA: Hidden Pines fire in Smithville, Texas: Mandatory and voluntary evacuations for 200 people; 9 homes destroyed; 180 homes threatened; 2,500 acres burned and 10 percent contained... Read More

Interesting Facts

Professor engineers material to prevent landslides. Who knew a few plants could save a life? A civil engineering assistant professor, certainly did and he is letting others know how in a new paper on preventing landslides with plants... Read More

'1,000-year' flood: Weather hyperbole or hard science? the "1,000-year" flood terminology it's not political rhetoric or apocalyptic hyperbole. It's actually the preferred term used by climate scientists to describe the math behind the tragic events... Read More

What's new in Disaster Risk Reduction?

International Day for Disaster Reduction: This year’s International Day for Disaster Reduction, celebrated on 13 October, will focus on traditional, indigenous and local knowledge that complement modern science and add to an individual’s and societies’ resilience to disasters... Read More

Developing Flood-Prevention With the World's Largest Man-Made Waves. A new Dutch facility, called Delta Flume, can generate waves up to 15 feet high, it's a way the Dutch have  created about flood prevention... Read More

Friday, October 9, 2015

October 9, 2015

What happened this week?

Guatemala: Landslide in El Cambray II, Santa Catarina Pinula. CONRED reported an update on Thursday, October 8, that 220 people dead, 350 are missing, 368 are in shelters, 386 have been evacuated, 27 are injures, and 120 homes have been destroyed... Read More

  • A landslide in Huitzapula, Atlixtac collapsed 20 homes, another 45 are at risk. The state civil protection reported that they are providing humanitarian aid to those affected. Temporary shelters have been created, but most people have decided to stay with relatives... Read More
  • Update on rains: The remnants of Hurricane Marty have left 35,000 people homeless in nine municipalities (Bácum, Cajeme, Empalme, Etchoja, Guaymas, Huatabampo, Navojoa, Benito Juarez, and San Ignacio Río Muerto) in southern Sonora... Read More 
  • Drought. Producers raised an alarm due to the drought in Pujal-Coy where 75,000 hectares of soybeans were lost, severely affecting their families and the economy of that region, not only in San Luis, but also in Veracruz and Tamulipas... Read More 
United States: Flooding in the Southeast: Moderate to heavy rainfall and flooding/flash flooding continued across the region through the weekend - heaviest impact felt across South Carolina, an additional 3 inches is expected across the southern Mid-Atlantic through Tuesday morning. Numerous Interstates, local & state roads, and bridges were impacted, 4 fatalities, 1 injury, 26 shelters open in SC, 5 shelters open in NC, hundreds of people evacuated statewide in SC, multiple private dams breached or overtopped in SC. City of Columbia could be without water service for 3-4 days, local hospitals planning possible patient evacuation due to lack of water... Read More

Paraguay: Asunción. Overflowing of the Paraguay River forced families to evacuate. Although the Paraguay River levels are decreasing, about 22,500 people remain in shelters set up by authorities in Asunción... Read More

Nicaragua: Rains and landslides in Wamblán, department of Jinoteca, leave 70 homes at risk and forced local Government to evacuate five families... Read More

Panama: State of emergency declared in Puerto Caimito (District of La Chorrera, west of the province of Panamá) due to rain and swells that occurred on Tuesday, October 6; 246 families are waiting to be relocated... Read More

Uruguay: Department of Treinta y Tres: Rains affected homes and municipal land. Some departments in the North of the country also suffered damaged roads and paths. 13 people have been evacuated in Rivera; there is a significant increase in the level of the Quaraí River in Artigas... Read More

Interesting Facts

What earthquake maps should really look like. How much more powerful is a magnitude 7 earthquake than a magnitude 3? Most maps give the wrong impression... Read More

U.S. scientists use Twitter to track earthquakes. Since 2009, seismologists at the U.S. Geological Survey have teamed up with the social media company. The result? More accurate emergency alerts... Read More

Despite Midwest location, UW has seismic effect on earthquake research. A tricky science, one expert explains seismology with a question: 'What if meteorologists had no satellites, no technology and were blind?'... Read More

What's new in Disaster Risk Reduction?

Addressing Disaster Risk Reduction in a post 2015 framework. The Association of Caribbean States (ACS) through its Directorate of Disaster Risk Reduction convened the 23rd Meeting of the Special Committee on Disaster Risk Reduction at the ACS Secretariat in Port of Spain on 9th October, 2015... Read More

Jamaica Gets US$6.8 Million To Fight Climate Change. Jamaica has received grant funding of US$6.8 million to be used for improving the quality and use of climate-related information, which will inform effective development planning and action at the local and national levels in order to reduce the impact of natural disasters... Read More

Earthquake simulator becomes a tourism attraction in Costa Rica's old colonial capital. The earthquake simulator is meant to sensitize people to take preventive measures and actions in the homes and communities toward this kind of situations... Read More

Friday, October 2, 2015

October 2, 2015

What happened this week?

Guatemala: 73 killed in Guatemala landslide; hundreds may be missing. At least 73 people are dead and many more are missing after a massive landslide covered much of a town in Guatemala, according to the nation's Public Ministry... Read More

  • A wildfire in the municipality of San Sebastian, town of Rosal leaves at least five people injured, at least ten missing, and over 700 people affected in the village of Macizo Colombiano... Read More
  • Municipality of Timbiquí, Department of Cauca. Gale and high tides overflowed the rivers Timbiquí and Saija on September 29, leaving four roads flooded, 1100 people (220 families) affected, and three people missing... Read More
  • Hurricane-force winds in the village of Banquito, municipality of Tierraalta, department of Córdoba leaves at least 90 families affected, eight homes destroyed, 45 homes without roofs, and 8 hectares of farmlands destroyed... Read More

Peru: Ubinas Volcano erupted yesterday spewing ash 4000 meters high and scattered ash creating a 15 km radius covering the surrounding north-east and south regions. The towns that have been affected by the ash are, Santa Rosa de Phara, Ubinas, Yalagua, Lloque, and Lucco. After the explosion, the seismic activity associated with the eruption was recorded. The Regional Emergency Operations Center recommended the affected population to use masks and safety goggles... Read More

Costa Rica: High swells in the cities of Puntarenas, Golfito, and Osa in the province of Puntarenas. Unusual high tides flooded 220 homes on Tuesday, September 29, affecting more than 70 families and leaving 100 without potable water... Read More

Guatemala: CONRED reported that in the departments of Marcos, Petén, Quetzaltenango, El Progreso and Alta Verapaz several rivers have overflowed, flooding about 70 homes. Floods and landslides were also reported in the municipalities of Sacatepéquez and various sectors of the capital... Read More

Mexico: Rains from Tropical Storm Marty have flooded over 300 homes (in the municipality of Coyuca de Beitez and Atoyac), overflowed 6 rivers, and caused landslides on Highway 11 in Guerrero, state authorities reported. Declaration of emergency was issued for the town of Mulege, Baja California Sur and five municipalities in Sonora for damages caused by severe rains in recent days... Read More

Panama: Flooding in coastal communities in the Pacific. High tides and rains affected 1,076 people, over 35 families, and 276 homes, specifically in the community of El Salado in the province in Aguadulce and the community of Puerto Caimito in the province of La Chorrera, where a temporary shelter has been set up for 14 families. Humanitarian aid has been distributed by the Joint Task Force... Read More

Interesting Facts

No phone signal in a disaster? Solar network 'in a box' to the rescue. Pakistani researchers have developed a portable, solar-powered mobile phone network for use in disasters like floods and earthquakes when regular communications are often disrupted... Read More

3D Meteorological Experience: Tornado in the Cube. Researchers can better understand how tornadoes develop, allowing for more accurate predictions and improved warning systems... Read More

What's new in Disaster Risk Reduction?

Changing the Disaster Narrative. A group will work to find new ways of assessing and addressing damage caused by disasters. By combining data from physical and social sensors, they will help plot a path that helps disaster recovery teams act more effectively and efficiently... Read More