Severe weather threatens tens of millions of people across the U.S.
State of Emergency Declared in Alabama amid a “unique, significant rainfall event.”
Alabama Gov. Bentley has declared a state of emergency as floodwaters continue to bury homes, businesses and public infrastructure across the state in what a senior meteorologist called a “unique, significant rainfall event.”
“This isn’t the typical end of December weather,” said a meteorologist at the National Weather Service (NWS) in Birmingham, Alabama. “This is a unique, significant rainfall event for this time of year. We get some severe weather this time of year, but to get this much rainfall this time of year is not typical.”
The Storm Prediction Center (SPC) received three unconfirmed reports of tornadoes striking JEFFERSON and TUSCALOOSA counties.
Meanwhile, NWS forecast a strong storm system would be moving from Rockies to Plains this weekend.
A storm system will strengthen this holiday weekend as it moves from the Rockies eastward through the Plains. A dangerous winter storm is forecast across portions of N.M., Tex. and Okla. where blizzard conditions are possible. Severe storms and heavy rain are possible in parts of the Gulf Coast region through the southern Plains to Ohio Valley on Saturday and Sunday where flooding is possible.
Further east, severe weather and flooding can be expected from east Texas to portions of the Mississippi Valley. Travel conditions will be hazardous in many locations through Sunday.
Dozens of Warnings, Advisories and Watches for severe weather are in effect across the U.S., as of posting.
Major wildfire burning uncontrollably, forcing mass evacuations, highway closures in SoCal
The massive blaze is devouring brush along PCH north of Ventura, threatening dozens of homes.
- Mandatory evacuations have been imposed for the Solimar Beach community.
- Campers were forced to evacuate at Emma Wood State Park.
- Faria Beach Park campground was under voluntary evacuation.
- Multiple section of Highway 101 and PCH were forced to close.
- The fire grew to about 1,000 acres, as of posting.
Contributed photo/Johnny Corona/via VCS. A Ventura County Fire helicopter drops water on the Solimar Fire early Saturday morning.
Deadly floods Displace 150,000 in Latin America
States of Emergency declared in Argentina, Paraguay and Uruguay.
Deadly flooding have forced about 150,000 people from their homes in Paraguay, Argentina and Uruguay, prompting the authorities to declare states of emergency in multiple regions across the three countries.
At least 10,000 people were evacuated in Entre Rios province, and twice as many may need to be evacuated, as floods threatened Concordia [pop: 170,000] located on the banks of the Uruguay River, the worst affected area, said the mayor, calling the deluge “the worst flooding in 50 years.”
“In November and December, the Rio de la Plata river basin in Argentina’s northeast received between 150 and 300 millimeters more rain than is typical for the period, the farm industry ministry said in a statement.,” AFP reported.
Death toll from flood related incidents in the affected areas stood at about a dozen, as of posting.
Great Ocean Road fire: Christmas Day blaze destroys 116 homes in Victoria
The massive bushfire in Victoria, Australia has destroyed at lease 116 homes, said a report.
“The fire, which has so far burned more than 2,200 hectares, is not yet under control.”
UK flood warnings: Homes evacuated amid record rain
At least 15 severe flood warnings are in effect and scores of homes have been evacuated, as record – heavy rain lashes parts of the UK, with Lancashire and Yorkshire counties bearing the brunt of flooding, said a report.
The UK Met Office has also issued two severe weather warnings, meaning danger to life, for rain in the two counties.
The UK Environment Agency has warned as much as a month’s rainfall would likely fall in one day in some areas.
Every river in Lancashire has exceeded record levels, the Agency said. The flood sirens have been activated in several towns/villages.
Lancashire Fire and Rescue Service warned: “A severe flood warning means danger to life. It doesn’t mean ‘come and have a look’! Please don’t come to visit Whalley or Ribchester now.”
“The village is under siege really,” a Ribchester resident told the BBC, describing the situation as “pretty grim,” with many homes at risk of flooding.
“The routes to the south are cut off and the route to the north, to Longridge, is under threat.”
A resident in Whalley said the situation was “a million times worse” than a fortnight ago when floods also hit.
“There are no more sandbags anywhere. People are panicking. That’s my business and my home, it’s a double whammy.”
- The River Calder burst its banks in Mytholmroyd in the Calder Valley.
- Hebden Bridge town centre was one of the areas hit by floods on Boxing Day.
- Flood sirens sounded in Mytholmroyd, West Yorkshire.
Capel Curig in north-west Wales received the most rainfall in the 24-hour period to 09:00UTC Boxing Day, with a total of 168mm, the report said.
Up to 120mm of rain could fall over the most exposed sites in northern England on Boxing Day – with the average rainfall for the whole of December in the North West being 145mm, said Met Office forecasters.
Floods Minister Rory Stewart told BBC Radio: “As the rain falls, the rivers respond very quickly. Certainly what we’ve seen is rainfall levels that nobody’s ever seen before.”
M5.4 Earthquake Strikes DODECANESE ISLANDS, GREECE
Magnitude: 5.4mb [http://www.emsc-csem.org/]
Region: DODECANESE ISLANDS, GREECE
Date/time: 2015-12-26 11:00:53.2 UTC
Location: 35.46 N, 27.42 E
- 329 km S of İzmir, Turkey [pop: 2,500,603]
- 207 km E of Irákleion, Greece [pop: 137,154]
- 131 km SW of Ródos, Greece [pop: 56,128]
- 19 km E of Kárpathos, Greece [pop: 2,243]
Testimony: Witness location : Rhodes (Greece) (130 km NE from epicenter)
Today’s earthquake was very noticeable! Our Light fixtures in the living room, which are made of hanging crystals, like a Church Bell, they were moving horizontal ways creating really strong sound that is hard to miss, even being inside another room of the house. The Christmas Tree was also “dancing” in some ways but, Thank God, nothing fall from any wall, and no damage was occurred because of this earthquake.