Disease

African Swine Fever – South Africa

An new outbreak of African Swine Fever (ASF) has been reported in the Heilbron area of the Free State Province in May 2019, according to the Agriculture, Forestry and Fisheries Ministry Monday. This follows outbreaks in April 2019 in the North West, Mpumalanga and Gauteng provinces.

African Swine Fever – Vietnam

According to the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development (MARD), ASF has spread to 2,296 communes, 204 districts of 29 provinces and cities, with a total of over 1.2 million pigs infected and destroyed, which accounts for for over 4 percent of the total pig herd in the country.

MARD noted that although the number of infected pigs accounts for only 4 percent, the speed of spread is very fast, along with favorable weather for disease spread.

Legionnaires Disease – Belgium

At least 16 people in the Evergem municipality of East Flanders province in northern Belgium has been sickened with Legionanaires’ disease, according to the Flemish Agency for Health and Safety. In addition, one patient has died while being treated at Ghent University Hospital

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Southern Hemisphere – Tropical cyclone 24s (Kenneth), located approximately 148 nm east-northeast of the Comoros, is tracking westward at 11 knots.

Tropical cyclone (tc) 25s (Lorna), located approximately 715 nm east- southeast of Diego Garcia, is tracking southeastward at 07 knots.

NewsBytes:

South Africa – At least 51 people are now confirmed dead in the flooding that hit parts of Durban and surrounding areas. Authorities say five people remain unaccounted for and hundreds more have been displaced. Meanwhile flooding caused by heavy rainfall in the Eastern Cape has claimed three lives. About 450 people have been affected by flooding in Port St Johns. Many bridges have been washed away across the district in many villages.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

In the Southern Hemisphere – Tropical cyclone 24s (Twenty-four), located approximately 716 nm north-northwest of Port Louis, Mauritius, is tracking west- southwestward at 05 knots.

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NewsBytes:

South Africa – Emergency rescue and medical services have worked through the night in the wake of torrential rains which have pounded parts of KwaZulu-Natal since Monday, claiming several lives and leaving devastation in its wake. The torrential downpours led to the evacuation of residents in the town of Port St Johns in the Eastern Cape on Monday evening. At least five people were confirmed dead and dozens others injured after their homes collapsed during flooding and mud slides in Durban.

Spain – The holiday hotspot of Alicante in eastern Spain has experienced some of the heaviest rainfall in its history, leading to the evacuation of more than 300 people during these Easter holidays. Heavy rainfall and storms have been ravaging the Alicante area since Thursday. As well as the flash floods, wind speeds have reached 100km/h along Spain’s central eastern coastline. In the nearby town of Jávea (Xabia) Sunday’s downpour saw 250 litres of rainfall for every square metre, flooding hundreds of homes and leaving cars floating in the streets like corn flakes in a cereal bowl. Numerous ports in the region have had to stop operations due to waves of up to three metres in height.

Canada – Spring flooding has killed one person and forced nearly 1,700 people from their homes in Canada’s Quebec province, with waters expected to continue rising on Monday due to rising temperatures and more rain forecast for the coming days.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 18s (Idai), located approximately 334 nm north-northeast of Europa Island, is tracking westward at 02 knots.

NewsBytes:

Malawi – Floods in southern Malawi have killed 30 people and left over 230,000 people without shelter, a minister said Sunday. The ministry had received reports of 30 deaths and about 238,000 villagers losing their homes since the start of the incessant downpours earlier this week.

Mozambique – Tropical Cyclone IDAI formed over the Northern Mozambique Channel on 9 March, moving south-east with a wind speed of 89 – 118 km/h. IDAI is expected to evolve to a Category 4 tropical cyclone making landfall south of Zambezia and north of Sofala provinces with a sustained wind speed of 204 km/h. As a consequence of heavy rains during the last days in the regions of Zambezia and Tete, 7 deaths have been reported, with 32 222 people affected and 4 242 people displaced. The Zambezi river basin has reached its maximum capacity and the propagation of the flood to the lower Zambezi is expected, affecting the provinces of Tete, Sofala, Zambezia and Manica.

South Africa – Heavy rain and flooding in parts of KwaMashu, Inanda and Ntuzuma in KwaZulu-Natal have left a number of homes flooded and damaged.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 17s (Haleh), located approximately 843 nm east-southeast of St Denis, Reunion, is tracking southwestward at 10 knots.

NewsBytes:

Johannesburg, South Africa – Heavy rain and hail flooded several roads across Johannesburg on Tuesday night. Traffic around Johannesburg was gridlocked. Roads were also flooded in Jet Park, Boksburg. The M1 north leading towards Pretoria was also flooded. A number of homes in Soweto and Eldorado Park were damaged.

Afghanistan – Update – The Norwegian Refugee Council says more than 32 people have now died and thousands displaced as heavy rains and flooding swept away homes across Afghanistan. The NRC says hundreds of homes were destroyed and around 4,000 families are in need of assistance in southern Kandahar province alone. The flooding began Friday and subsided Monday. Relief efforts were ongoing Tuesday. Heavy snowfall across Afghanistan has raised fears of severe flooding this spring and so far this year nearly 50 people have already died from flooding. Even before the floods this week, 6.3 million people were thought to be in need of humanitarian assistance across Afghanistan. At least 25 people have died in flooding in neighbouring Pakistan.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 15p (Oma), located approximately 275 nm west-northwest of Port Vila, Vanuatu, is tracking west-southwestward at 02 knots.

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Zimbabwe – Thirty-eight miners are feared dead after water from a collapsed dam flooded two mines in Zimbabwe. While panning for gold, 34 miners went underground at Silver Moon Mine and four miners entered Cricket Mine in Battlefields near Kadoma Tuesday evening before both mines flooded. Heavy rains overnight Tuesday led to the collapse of the dam wall. An emergency was declared after the dam burst. The flooding from the collapsed dam flooded mine shafts, which the miners entered illegally.

South Africa – Bloemfontein in the Free State has been experiencing heavy rains for the past few days resulting in floods across the city.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

There are no current tropical storms.

NewsBytes:

Queensland, Australia – Australia’s military has been deployed to tackle devastating “once-in-a-century” floods that have inundated homes, schools and airports in the country’s northeast, forcing hundreds to flee and bringing crocodiles onto the streets. The Australian Defence Forces filled sandbags, deployed amphibious cargo vehicles and helped pluck flashlight-wielding residents from their rooftops Monday, as monsoon rains drenched the northern state of Queensland. Australia’s tropical north typically experiences heavy rains during the monsoon season, but the recent downpour has far exceeded normal levels. In Townsville the residents have been warned that the peak of the floods has not yet arrived.

South Africa – Mop-up operations are underway following significant rainfall that led to flooding in the Little Karoo and Garden Route District. The Meiringspoort pass between Oudtshoorn and Beaufort West has also been reopened after it was closed due to streams of water flowing down. Some homes were flooded, while others were damaged by strong winds.

Italy – St Mark’s square and alleyways in Venice’s historic centre were affected by flooding on Saturday, after heavy rains caused an unusually high tide. Tourists and residents were seen using wooden platforms to cross the square, while some braved the high flood levels, walking through the water in rubber boots. Elsewhere in Italy, firefighters used ropes and planks of wood to rescue three teenagers from a muddy river after their car swerved off the road in heavy rain. Flash floods had caused the river Cornea, near the Tuscan city of Pisa, to burst its banks and the teenagers’ car had become blocked after they had attempted to cross the swollen waterway.

Wildfires

Wildfires – South Africa

Thirty-one residential properties have been completely destroyed and 28 properties sustained partial to major damage in the raging fires in the Betty’s Bay area, east of Cape Town, the city’s fire chief Theo Lane said on Saturday. It is estimated that more than 12 800 hectares of vegetation was destroyed.

Wildfires

Wildfires – Tasmania

An out-of-control bushfire is raging through a popular tourist destination after lightning struck in Tasmanian wilderness in the midsouth of the state, around an hour from Hobart. Total fire bans are in place across the state as temperatures soar. The Maydena, Tyenna and National Park townships are under threat as a fire around 8,800 hectares in size blazes just 20km away in the northwest.

Wildfires – South Africa

A number of homes were destroyed by a wildfire around Betty’s Bay and Pringle Bay in the Western Cape. It’s suspected that two flares were set off just after midnight on Tuesday, igniting a fire in the Kogelberg nature reserve. Strong winds fanned the flames and the fire reached Pringle Bay. Residents of Pringle Bay were evacuated early on Thursday morning when the fire jumped the R44 into the coastal town. One person is reported to have died during the panic, allegedly of a heart attack.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Southern Hemisphere: Tropical cyclone (tc) 06s (Kenanga), located approximately 1097 nm east of Diego Garcia, is tracking southwestward at 07 knots.

In the Indian Ocean: Tropical cyclone (tc) 08b (Phetai), located approximately 330 nm south of Visakhaputnam, India, is tracking north-northwestward at 12 knots.

NewsBytes:

South Africa – A severe hailstorm hit the North West region of the Pilanesberg and surrounding areas, seriously damaging the Sun City Resort. The popular resort says the storm has caused substantial damage to buildings and vehicles in the area. Numerous hotel rooms and facilities were damaged or flooded, the two golf courses were closed for extensive repairs and day visitors were advised to return home.

Singapore – Heavy rain led to flash floods at Jalan Boon Lay (International Road) and Yuan Ching Road on Saturday.

Malaysia – More people were evacuated overnight after more heavy rains, raising to 163 the number of flood evacuees in Terengganu as at 8 am today, according to the Civil Defence Force (APM). Several areas were still experiencing rain and people in the low-lying places face the risk of floods at any time, according to local officials.

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Wildfires

Wildfires – South Africa – Update

It’s been 13 days of raging wildfires from George to Knysna and now threatening Plettenberg Bay with more than 86 000 hectares burned an are more than four times the size of the 2017 Knysna wildfires. The blaze was being fought on several fronts on Tuesday by 323 firefighters‚ 39 vehicles‚ six spotter aircraft‚ five helicopters and three water bombers.

Wildfires

Wildfires – South Africa

A spate of wildfires across the Garden Route, which have spread from George to the Karatara area, claimed the lives of at least eight people – including a newborn baby and its mother, two children and a toddler – on Monday, and led to the evacuation of hundreds of people.

Wildfires

Wildfires – South Africa

Two raging wildfires in opposite sections of the Garden Route in the Western Cape are still burning out of control, with efforts beefed up in an attempt to stop them from spreading.

By Wednesday morning, two separate fires — both described as massive ‑‑ were reported along the Garden Route, one in the Tsitsikamma area, bordering the Garden Route National Park (GRNP), and the other in the Vermaaklikheid area in the Western Cape. The GRNP was forced to temporarily close the Otter Trail and evacuate hikers when the fire appeared to have jumped into the park.

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Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the Indian Ocean: Tropical cyclone 05a (Luban), located approximately 136 nm west-southwest of Salalah, Oman, is tracking west-northwestward at 07 knots.

NewsBytes:

South Africa – Saturday’s heavy downpours resulted in cars being swept away and roads being damaged in parts of Tshwane (Pretoria). Low lying areas in Hammanskraal, Ga-Rankuwa and Soshanguve have been severely affected. A heavy hailstorm has also been reported in Vereeniging and Laudium with hail lying more than 30cm thick in places.

Sumatra, Indonesia – Torrential rains triggered flash floods and landslides on the Indonesian island of Sumatra, killing at least 27 people, including a dozen children at a school, officials said Saturday. A flash flood with mud and debris from landslides struck Mandailing Natal district in North Sumatra province and smashed an Islamic school in Muara Saladi village, where 29 children were swept away on Friday afternoon. Rescuers retrieved the bodies of 11 children from mud and rubble hours later.

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Wales – Two people have been killed after storm Callum battered Wales, the western parts of Britain and coastal areas. A Met Office alert warned of danger to life from fast-flowing, deep floodwater and power cuts, and said some communities were threatened with being cut off completely.

Storms and Floods

Tropical Storms – Roundup of Tropical Storms:

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In the eastern Pacific Ocean: Post-Tropical Cyclone 06e (Emilia), located about 1005 mi…1615 km w of the southern tip of Baja California with maximum sustained winds…30 mph…45 km/h. Present movement…wnw or 295 degrees at 13 mph…20 km/h.

Tropical Storm Fabio is located about 720 mi…1155 km s of the southern tip of Baja California with maximum sustained winds…70 mph…110 km/h. Present movement…w or 280 degrees at 10 mph…17 km/h.

In the western Pacific Ocean: Typhoon (ts) 09w (Prapiroon), located approximately 105 nm north-northwest of Kadena AFB, Okinawa, Japan, is tracking north-northeastward at 09 knots.

NewsBytes:

South Africa – About 4 000 homes were affected by flooding in informal settlements around Cape Town after heavy rain, while at least two mountain passes in Witzenberg near Ceres have snowed over and are unsafe for travel. Around 4 000 homes in Khayelitsha, Philippi and Macassar were affected, but no evacuations or emergency shelters were activated. Power lines were also down in Lansdowne, Gugulethu and Wynberg, while trees were uprooted in Constantia, Vredekloof, Durbanville, Tamboerskloof and Pinelands.Assessments and mop-up operations are underway.