Earthquakes

Magnitude 5+ Earthquakes – Global

5.2 Earthquake hits Mindanao in the Philippines.

5.1 Earthquake hits the South Sandwich Islands.

5.0 Earthquake hits south of Java, Indonesia.

5.0 Earthquake hits south of Fiji.

5.0 Earthquake hits New Ireland, Papua New Guinea.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the South Indian Ocean: Tropical Cyclone “Carlos” (04S) Carlos continues to weaken and is expected to dissipate as it moves southeast at 19 mph into the southern Indian Ocean.

Newsbytes:

Northern California, USA – Heavy floods continue to damage parts of Northern California Saturday. Despite seeing a break in the rain, residents continued to feel the effects of the latest storm. Evacuations have been issued in the low-lying areas of Wilton and Point Pleasant.

Western Australia – With much of the continent enduring intense heat, several small communities in Western Australia’s Wheatbelt region are dealing with floodwaters. Water levels within the Avon River catchment are expected rise over the weekend with up to 70mm of rain recorded in the 24 hours to Friday night, the Bureau of Meteorology says. Flooding hit the community of Toodyay, along Stirling Terrace, and Mortlock River East at O’Driscolls Farm on Saturday morning. Moderate flooding was also expected along the river in Beverley, with water under the town’s bridge at 1.75m and rising. Residents in Northam were also told to expect minor flooding with some already deciding to head to higher ground.

Indonesia – At least 13 people have been killed and thousands more made homeless after devastating floods swept across Indonesia. The idyllic tourist hotspot of Bali was partially submerged after five days of torrential rain triggered deadly landslides. Rivers on Sumbawa Island burst their banks following rainfall of 12 to 28 inches, flooding seven sub-districts. Some 8,000 were stranded in their villages in two sub-districts which are now only accessible by boat. The agency warned more heavy rains could be on the way, bringing with it further flooding and landslides adding to the misery of remaining residents, many of whom live in stilt houses. Millions of people live in mountainous areas or on flood plains, with heavy rainfall regularly causing landslides and floods on the archipelago.

Wildfires

Out of control bushfires rage across New South Wales, Australia

There are now 87 fires across NSW, with five at the most serious emergency warning status and Rural Fire Service Commissioner Shane Fitzsimmons warned that a southerly change expected to sweep across the state in the next few hours could make conditions far worse.

However there are hundreds of firefighters in action and thousands more at the ready from a total pool of some 2500 firefighters, with no firefighters needing to be called in from inter state.

While the Sir Ivan fire continues to rage near Dunedoo, with a fire front now some 20km long, and the Pappinbarra Rd fire near Port Macquaire shows no sign of slowing, there are also emergency warnings in place for fires at Binalong Rd Boggabri, White Cedars Rd, Kains Flat north east of Mudgee and Spring Hill Rd Dondingalong southwest of Kempsey.

There are nine more fires at watch an act status across the state.

The Baptist Church at Aberdare has been destroyed by fire. The evening service reportedly had only finished five minutes earlier. No one was hurt.

Disease

Bolivia – Yellow Fever

The Bolivia Ministry of Health has confirmed yellow fever in a 27-year-old male Danish tourist who likely contracted the mosquito borne virus while visiting the jungle, according to a Terra report. This is the first confirmed case in the country in ten years.

Saudi Arabia: MERS case reported in Mecca

The Saudi Arabia Ministry of Health reported an additional infection of Middle East Respiratory Syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV) from a patient in Mecca. The 60-year-old male expatriate is reportedly hospitalized in critical condition. The probable source of the infection is noted as direct contact with camels.

Bird flu hits poultry markets in major Chinese city

Authorities in China’s third-largest city warned that about 30 percent of its live poultry markets were contaminated with the H7N9 avian flu virus, as an eastern province ordered markets to shut, state media reported on Saturday.

East China’s Zhejiang province has ordered all markets across the province to halt live poultry trade on Saturday over bird flu concerns

In January, Zhejiang reported 35 infections of the H7N9 strain of bird flu, according to the provincial Health and Family Planning Commission.

Earlier on Saturday, China Daily said the disease control authority in Guangzhou, capital of the southern Chinese province of Guangdong, urged residents to avoid contact with live poultry after tests in the past week.