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Archive for June 4th, 2015

MERS Alert in South Korea: 1,200 Schools Closed, 1,600 People Quarantined

Posted by feww on June 4, 2015

MERS claims third victim in South Korea

The MERS virus has killed three people in South Korea since its outbreak on May 20, prompting the authorities to close down at least 1,200 scholls and quarantine more than 1,600 people.

The latest fatality from the virus was the 36th officially confirmed case of the infection in S. Korea.

US forces on alert

Meantime, the United States Forces Korea (USFK) said Thursday it will tighten health checks at its military bases to protect its service members from virus, according to a report.

“The move comes after a Korean chief master sergeant serving at the U.S. Air Force base in Osan, Gyoneggi Province, tested positive Wednesday for the deadly virus.”

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS)

Middle East Respiratory Syndrome (MERS) is a viral respiratory illness that is new to humans. It was first reported in Saudi Arabia in 2012 and has since spread to several other countries, including the United States. Most people infected with MERS-CoV developed severe acute respiratory illness, including fever, cough, and shortness of breath. Many of them have died, according to CDC.

Countries with Lab-Confirmed MERS Cases

Countries in or near the Arabian Peninsula with Cases
  • Saudi Arabia
  • United Arab Emirates (UAE)
  • Qatar
  • Oman
  • Jordan
  • Kuwait
  • Yemen
  • Lebanon
  • Iran
Countries with Travel-associated Cases
  • United Kingdom (UK)
  • France
  • Tunisia
  • Italy
  • Malaysia
  • Philippines
  • Greece
  • Egypt
  • United States of America (USA)
  • Netherlands
  • Algeria
  • Austria
  • Turkey
  • Germany
  • South Korea
  • China

Related Links

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Texas Emergency Disaster Proclamations Expanded

Posted by feww on June 4, 2015

Emergency Disaster Proclamation expanded to 94 Texas Counties

Texas governor has now declared States of Disaster in 94 counties, as extreme weather events and deadly flash flooding leave trails of death and destruction across the state.

Governor Abbott expanded his Disaster Proclamations of May 11, May 15, May 25, May 26 and May 29, 2015, certifying that the extreme weather events have now caused a disaster in 94 Texas counties, he said on his website.

I, GREG ABBOTT, Governor of the State of Texas, issued Emergency Disaster Proclamations on May 11, May 15, May 25, May 26 and May 29, 2015, certifying that the severe weather, tornado and flooding event that began on May 4, 2015, has caused a disaster in many Texas counties.  Disaster conditions persist in many parts of the state.

THEREFORE, in accordance with the authority vested in me by Section 418.014 of the Texas Government Code, I hereby amend these aforementioned proclamations and declare a disaster in Angelina, Archer, Atascosa, Austin, Bastrop, Baylor, Blanco, Bosque, Bowie, Brazoria, Brazos, Burleson, Caldwell, Calhoun, Cass, Chambers, Cherokee, Clay, Collin, Comal, Comanche, Cooke, Dallas, Denton, Dewitt, Eastland, Edwards, Ellis, Erath, Fannin, Fayette, Fort Bend, Gaines, Garza, Gillespie, Grayson, Grimes, Guadalupe, Harris, Harrison, Hays, Henderson, Hidalgo, Hill, Hood, Houston, Jack, Jasper, Johnson, Kaufman, Kendall, Lamar, Lee, Leon, Liberty, Lubbock, Lynn, Madison, Milam, Montague, Nacogdoches, Navarro, Newton, Nueces, Palo Pinto, Parker, Polk, Real, Red River, Refugio, Robertson, Rusk, Sabine, San Augustine, San Jacinto, Shelby, Smith, Somervell, Starr, Tarrant, Travis, Trinity, Tyler, Uvalde, Van Zandt, Victoria, Walker, Waller, Wharton, Wichita, Williamson, Wilson, Wise and Zavala counties.

Federal Disaster Declaration

The Disaster President declared a major disaster for Texas in the areas affected by severe storms, tornadoes, straight-line winds and flooding on May 30.

Related Links

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45 Million Birds Affected by Avian Flu in U.S.

Posted by feww on June 4, 2015

Bird Flu Continues to Devastate US Poultry Industry

Infected Commercial Flocks. Commercial flocks have been infected in at least 15 States: Arkansas, California, Idaho, Indiana (May 10, 2015), Iowa, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska (May 11, 2015), North Dakota, Oregon, South Dakota, Washington and  Wisconsin.

Update on Avian Influenza Findings – Poultry Findings Confirmed by USDA’s National Veterinary Services Laboratories

  • Detections Reported: 207
  • Birds Affected: 45,027,793
  • First Detection Reported: December 19, 2014
  • Last Detection Reported: June 2, 2015
  • No of Flocks pending tests: 14

Worst Affected Areas

  • Iowa: 29,261,400 Birds Affected
  • Minnesota: 8,394,450
  • Nebraska: 3,794,100
  • Wisconsin: 1,950,733
  • South Dakota: 1,168,200

States of Emergency

Iowa’s Gov. Branstad has extended a State of Disaster Emergency Proclamation until July 1 as more farms continue to report new cases of the deadly avian flu virus in their poultry flocks.

Nebraska Gov. Ricketts proclaimed a state of emergency in May following the discovery of avian influenza in the state’s poultry sector, according to a statement posted on his website.

Background and Additional Links

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Drought Destroys More Crops in Idaho, Oregon, Utah

Posted by feww on June 4, 2015

Drought Crop Disasters Declared for 15  Counties across Three States

The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has designated a total of 15 additional counties in three  states—Idaho, Oregon and Utah—as crop disaster areas due to damages and losses caused by the ongoing drought.

The disaster designations are for the following areas:

  • Idaho:  Adams, Gem, Idaho, Valley and Washington counties.
  • Oregon: Baker and Wallowa counties.
  • Utah: Piute, Sevier, Beaver, Emery, Garfield, Millard, Sanpete and Wayne counties.

Crop Disasters 2015

Beginning January 7, 2015 USDA has declared crop disasters in at least 1,224 counties across 16 states: Arizona, California, Colorado, Florida, Georgia, Idaho, Kansas, Nebraska, Nevada, New Mexico, Oklahoma, Oregon, Texas, Utah, Virginia and West Virginia.

About 99 percent of the 2015 crop disaster designations so far are due to drought.

Crop Disasters 2014

In 2014, USDA declared crop disasters in at least 2,904 counties across 44 states. Most of the designations were due to drought.

Those states were:

Alabama, Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Connecticut, Delaware, Florida, Georgia, Hawaii, Idaho, Illinois, Indiana, Iowa, Kansas, Louisiana, Maine, Massachusetts, Michigan. Minnesota, Mississippi, Missouri, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, New Hampshire, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah, Vermont, Virginia, Washington, Wisconsin, and Wyoming. [FIRE-EARTH has documented all of the above listings. See blog content.]

i. USDA trigger point for a countywide disaster declaration is 30 percent crop loss on at least one crop.

ii. The counties designated as agricultural disaster areas, as listed above, include both primary and contiguous disaster areas.

iii. Some counties may have been designated as crop disaster areas more than once due to multiple disasters.

iv. The U.S. has a total of 3,143 counties and county-equivalents.

v. The disaster designations posted above were approved by USDA on June 3, 2015 and posted on their website in two separate declarations.

Related Links

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