A quiet 2009 for natural disasters

By: Dr. Jeff Masters , 4:35 PM GMT on January 04, 2010

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It was a relatively quiet year globally for natural disasters in 2009. According to Munich Re insurance company, the death toll from 2009 natural disasters was approximately 10,000, well below the average 75,000 deaths per year seen over the decade of the 2000s. Damage from 2009 natural disasters was about $50 billion, compared to the decadal average of $115 billion, and far below the $200 billion in destruction wrought by 2008's natural disasters. The most costly disaster of 2009 was Winter Storm Klaus, which hit northern Spain and southwest France January 23 - 25, causing $5.1 billion in damage. The deadliest weather-related disaster was Category 2 Typhoon Ketsana, which killed 694 people in the Philippines and Southeast Asia. Category 2 Typhoon Morakot was a close second, with 614 fatalities, primarily in Taiwan. The deadliest natural disaster overall was the magnitude 7.6 earthquake that shook the Indonesian island of Sumatra on 30 September, killing nearly 1,200 people.


Figure 1. Cars being swept away by Ketsana's flood waters in a still frame from a dramatic YouTube video captured by medical students at the East Ramon Magsaysay Memorial Medical Center.

I'll be back Tuesday with my selection for the top global weather event of 2009: the Horn of Africa drought.

Jeff Masters

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Quoting tornadodude:


ha Public Relations, marketing, etc :P


What was your major?
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no fun, SQUAWK.....I've been banned way too many times on here....I think the geeks have me on auto-ban....
Member Since: January 24, 2007 Posts: 317 Comments: 31946

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Quoting NRAamy:
Yesterday 74 °F

in The OC.....


hi SQUAWK....


Hi kid, good to see you. Are we having any fun lately? Like maybe a new rain dance?
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Quoting hydrus:
Good Morning Flood, 18 degrees w/ flurries here. looks like diamonds in the air because the sun is shining through them. How is your back?


Generally pretty good...back spasms and a little pain, but walking (I don't have to use a cane) and the use of minimal pain meds/muscle relaxants seem to do the trick. Unless of course its very cold...LOL

Thanks, for asking!

It's about 29 here right now and clear as can be...now, Thursday will be another story...low in the low teens and a high in the mid twenties...
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
but I generally have an additional 20 lbs of layers on and it does slow me down

eyes...me too...it's called blubber...that's why I'm on a diet!

:)
Member Since: January 24, 2007 Posts: 317 Comments: 31946
Quoting help4u:
Janaury is predicted to be the 10th warmest on record this year,according to the experts.Nothing can stop it now.The heat is on people.


Tell that to the people all the way down to Mexico and over to Florida this weekend.
Member Since: September 6, 2007 Posts: 888 Comments: 15989
Quoting SQUAWK:


OK, I'll bite. To what?


ha Public Relations, marketing, etc :P
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Yesterday 74 °F

in The OC.....


hi SQUAWK....
Member Since: January 24, 2007 Posts: 317 Comments: 31946
Quoting tornadodude:
Well guys, I think I am changing my major :p


OK, I'll bite. To what?
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Quoting tornadodude:
...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT THROUGH
THURSDAY AFTERNOON...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NASHVILLE HAS ISSUED A WINTER
STORM WATCH...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT
THROUGH THURSDAY AFTERNOON.

* TIMING...4 AM CST THURSDAY TO 6 PM CST THURSDAY

* MAIN IMPACT...2 TO 4 INCHES OF SNOW ACCUMULATION...FOLLOWED BY
BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. THE SNOWFALL WILL STICK TO ROAD
SURFACES WITH NO MELTING...AND STRONG NORTHWEST WINDS WILL CAUSE
A PERIOD OF BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. THIS WILL CAUSE TRAVEL
PROBLEMS OR DELAYS ACROSS THE MID STATE.

* OTHER IMPACTS...ANOTHER SURGE OF ARCTIC AIR WILL MOVE INTO THE
MID STATE IN THE WAKE OF THE SYSTEM AND WILL DRIVE TEMPERATURES
INTO THE SINGLE DIGITS FRIDAY NIGHT...WITH WIND CHILL READINGS
BELOW ZERO.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT
SNOW...SLEET...OR ICE ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL.
CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE LATEST FORECASTS.

&&
This should prove interesting for us up on the Cumberland Plateau. Right now 14 degrees w/ flurries.
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773. unf97
Jacksonville, FL NWS Weather Forecast Office
Jax International Airport

Current Conditions 11:00 a.m.

SUNNY

Temperature: 35*F
Dew Point: 16*F
Wind: West 12 mph with gusts to 22mph
Wind Chill Index: 27*F
Pressure: 1023 mb F
Visibility: 10.0 miles

Official morning low temperature measured at Jax WFO for 01/05/10: 26*F
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As far as the stream of the clouds over Dade/broward counties there are 2 reasons for this is one being the subtropical jet stream is providing moisture and the polar jet stream is also far to the south which is providing enough dynamics to form clouds ahead of the impulses that are moving through.There's definitely a chance for freezeing temps for the far western areas.

adrian
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...WINTER STORM WATCH IN EFFECT FROM LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT THROUGH
THURSDAY AFTERNOON...

THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN NASHVILLE HAS ISSUED A WINTER
STORM WATCH...WHICH IS IN EFFECT FROM LATE WEDNESDAY NIGHT
THROUGH THURSDAY AFTERNOON.

* TIMING...4 AM CST THURSDAY TO 6 PM CST THURSDAY

* MAIN IMPACT...2 TO 4 INCHES OF SNOW ACCUMULATION...FOLLOWED BY
BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. THE SNOWFALL WILL STICK TO ROAD
SURFACES WITH NO MELTING...AND STRONG NORTHWEST WINDS WILL CAUSE
A PERIOD OF BLOWING AND DRIFTING SNOW. THIS WILL CAUSE TRAVEL
PROBLEMS OR DELAYS ACROSS THE MID STATE.

* OTHER IMPACTS...ANOTHER SURGE OF ARCTIC AIR WILL MOVE INTO THE
MID STATE IN THE WAKE OF THE SYSTEM AND WILL DRIVE TEMPERATURES
INTO THE SINGLE DIGITS FRIDAY NIGHT...WITH WIND CHILL READINGS
BELOW ZERO.

PRECAUTIONARY/PREPAREDNESS ACTIONS...

A WINTER STORM WATCH MEANS THERE IS A POTENTIAL FOR SIGNIFICANT
SNOW...SLEET...OR ICE ACCUMULATIONS THAT MAY IMPACT TRAVEL.
CONTINUE TO MONITOR THE LATEST FORECASTS.

&&
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GFS starting to come in a bit of agreement with the CMC, showing possible weak low in the GOM after our first one. Sleet into Orlando, can't wait to see the rain/snow precip GFS on this one.
Member Since: July 1, 2008 Posts: 13 Comments: 7437
Strong aftershocks rattle Solomons after quake and tsunami

* From: AFP
* January 06, 2010 2:49AM

A SERIES of powerful aftershocks rattled the Solomon Islands late last night, a day after a 7.2-magnitude quake and tsunami left around 1,000 people homeless on the remote Pacific islands.

The aftershocks, ranging from magnitude 5.3 to 6.9 struck just minutes apart from around 2315 (AEDT) and came as officials visited isolated villages to check on damage after Monday's earthquake.

The latest aftershocks struck very close to Monday's quake, according to seismologists at the US Geological Survey.

The Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre said there was no threat of a tsunami but warned localised destructive waves were possible.

Information from the remote area remained sketchy but a police patrol boat from the capital Honiara left on Monday night to assess damage in the region about 300km west of the capital.

There were no reports of deaths or serious injuries following the quakes and tsunami on Monday.

Start of sidebar. Skip to end of sidebar.

End of sidebar. Return to start of sidebar.

Another 5.1 magnitude aftershock rattled the region yesterday morning and a 6.2 aftershock late on Monday sent villagers fleeing for higher ground, said the director of the Solomon Islands Disaster Management Office, Loti Yates.

"The quake frightened a lot of people into running away from their coastal villages,'' Yates said.

He added that landslides had occurred on Rendova and Tetepare islands following the 7.2 quake and an earlier 6.5 tremor.

"We are still waiting for the latest reports since the survey of the area yesterday,'' Yates said.

The office said damage was caused by the earthquakes and a tsunami of up to about 2.5m, according to officials in the region.

Officials reported on Monday that at least 500 homes had been damaged or destroyed but Yates said these were all in the Morovo Lagoon area and further damage on Rendova and Tetepare was still to be assessed.

Rendova is home to around 3,600 people, according to UNICEF, which is rebuilding 19 schools on the island following an April 2007 tsunami that killed 52 people in the region, destroyed hundreds of homes and displaced thousands.

UNICEF Pacific representative Isiye Ndombi said rapid response teams had been sent to Rendova and Tetepare, a largely uninhabited island except for an eco-tourism venture.

"It will take several days however until we know the full extent and consequences of this tsunami because these islands are very remote and difficult to access,'' Ndombi said.
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JUST IN

Region: SOLOMON ISLANDS
Geographic coordinates:9.216S, 157.930E Magnitude:5.8 Mb Depth:35 km
Universal Time (UTC): 5 Jan 2010 13:11:43
Time near the Epicenter: 6 Jan 2010 00:11:43
Location with respect to nearby cities: 172 km (107 miles) SE (136 degrees) of Gizo, Solomon Islands
178 km (110 miles) SW (223 degrees) of Dadali, Solomon Islands
223 km (139 miles) W (277 degrees) of HONIARA, Solomon Islands
1178 km (732 miles) E (90 degrees) of PORT MORESBY, Papua New Guinea
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have a good one Aussie
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766. IKE
Looking at the 12Z GFS. Looks like the zero line comes into NW Florida at 60-66 hours and has some precip lagging behind it for a short distance.

Looks like about a 12 hour period of precipitation ending as possible frozen precip.
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Janaury is predicted to be the 10th warmest on record this year,according to the experts.Nothing can stop it now.The heat is on people.
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Quoting Floodman:


Yep, but my personal preference is for dull overcast and extremely cold, though bright bitter mornings are good as well
Good Morning Flood, 18 degrees w/ flurries here. looks like diamonds in the air because the sun is shining through them. How is your back?
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I guess i better get off to bed. its 3am and the kids will be awake in about 5hrs.
Goodnight all, stay safe and stay warm.
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Well guys, I think I am changing my major :p
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Quoting ElConando:


In many cold fronts in Miami i could always hear a trains horn and in fact it moving a long. The tracks are a mile away from my house.

I am about 1.5 miles from the nearest rail line and i hear the train horns. I also hear the traffic lights crossing buzzer which is about 1/4 mile away.
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Quoting atmoaggie:

This is one of those few mornings a year when one could see the dome, CBD, and CCConnection from the north toll booth on the bridge, thanks to the same.


Yep, but my personal preference is for dull overcast and extremely cold, though bright bitter mornings are good as well
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
759. unf97
Quoting PensacolaDoug:
Whats the status on the short wave coming thru the south west?


Doug, that shortwave is currently diving east -southeastward over the Northern Baha California area. It still looks rather vigourous this morning on the water vapor imagery. This piece of energy, if it can hold together and not get flattened out, can be the "trigger" for the GOM Low later this week.
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Quoting eyesontheweather:
Generally speaking I would much prefer a warm afternoon at an outdoor table of a nice Mexican resuraunt with a great view of the beach, a baskett of chips and a bowl or 2 of great Hot Sauce and a cold beverage to accomplish a sinus cavity cleansing

That was me last weekend at manly beach here in Sydney. I had crumbed fish and a basket of hot chips covered in salt and vinegar. oh and a few choice ale's too.
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Quoting Floodman:


You are correct sir! Less dulling of the sound waves due to lower moisture in the air...the other thing is that most folks aren't as crazy as me and stay in their warm houses when it's that cold; less background noise...LOL

This is one of those few mornings a year when one could see the dome, CBD, and CCConnection from the north toll booth on the bridge, thanks to the same.
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Quoting Floodman:


The other issue is that it freezes to everything...your outer garments, glasses, cars...my personal favorite: handrails and stairs


Ski lifts :P
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Quoting Floodman:


You are correct sir! Less dulling of the sound waves due to lower moisture in the air...the other thing is that most folks aren't as crazy as me and stay in their warm houses when it's that cold; less background noise...LOL


In many cold fronts in Miami i could always hear a trains horn and in fact it moving a long. The tracks are a mile away from my house.
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Quoting ElConando:


My relative in Ohio talked about a freezing fog once. First time i've heard that term in a while. They said it stinks for it to be so cold and not being able to see anything.


The other issue is that it freezes to everything...your outer garments, glasses, cars...my personal favorite: handrails and stairs
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting ElConando:


My relative in Ohio talked about a freezing fog once. First time i've heard that term in a while. They said it stinks for it to be so cold and not being able to see anything.


yeah it is really pretty though. I have been skiing during freezing fog at night, and it was a pretty sight.
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Quoting tornadodude:




My relative in Ohio talked about a freezing fog once. First time i've heard that term in a while. They said it stinks for it to be so cold and not being able to see anything.
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Quoting Floodman:


Yep...it makes you move lighter and faster too and you can hear things from miles off it seems...
Hearing things clearer and further off yes, I agree. As for moving faster and lighter.....Can't speak for others but I generally have an additional 20 lbs of layers on and it does slow me down LOL
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Quoting atmoaggie:

That is the lack of humidity as much as the denser cold air...I think.


You are correct sir! Less dulling of the sound waves due to lower moisture in the air...the other thing is that most folks aren't as crazy as me and stay in their warm houses when it's that cold; less background noise...LOL
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting ElConando:
i'm guessing the peak of the front is Sat into Sunday. Overnight lows in the teens then.


oh thats when another front comes in. Thurs.
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Quoting ElConando:


Freezing fog. LOL!


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Quoting AussieStorm:


OMG are you serious, I have never experienced temps like that. I don't think i ever will.


Nearly every winter until I was about 30; winters have been MUCH milder in the central US since then (about 1990).

It's really not hard Aussie; you layer your clothing and make sure you keep your feet warm. I bought a pair of Fabiano Hikers when I was 19 and working outdoors a good bit in the the winter and they made all the difference. Took me 20 years and 3 resolings but I finally wore them out...
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
Quoting Floodman:


Yep...it makes you move lighter and faster too and you can hear things from miles off it seems...

That is the lack of humidity as much as the denser cold air...I think.
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Quoting unclemush:
Current Conditions


Omaha, Nebraska (Airport)
Updated: 8:15 AM CST on January 05, 2010
-15 °F
Freezing Fog
Windchill: -15 °F
Humidity: 84%
Dew Point: -18 °F
Wind: Calm
Pressure: 30.48 in (Steady)
Visibility: 0.0 miles
UV: 0 out of 16
Clouds: Mostly Cloudy 100 ft
Mostly Cloudy 400 ft
(Above Ground Level)
Snow Depth: 16.0 in
Elevation: 984 ft




Freezing fog. LOL!
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Quoting jeffs713:

those bitterly cold mornings do wonders for clearing out your sinuses.


Yep...it makes you move lighter and faster too and you can hear things from miles off it seems...
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
i'm guessing the peak of the front is Sat into Sunday. Overnight lows in the teens then.
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Quoting jeffs713:

those bitterly cold mornings do wonders for clearing out your sinuses.
Generally speaking I would much prefer a warm afternoon at an outdoor table of a nice Mexican resuraunt with a great view of the beach, a baskett of chips and a bowl or 2 of great Hot Sauce and a cold beverage to accomplish a sinus cavity cleansing
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I enjoy the cold, but some snow would be nice!
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Quoting Floodman:
I have to tell you eyes, before I had the surgery, it couldn't get cold enough for me...after, though and I get the chills pretty easy. Hope that changes; bitterly cold crisp mornings are my favorite!

My back is worse in winter, at the moment, summer time, I am having no problem.
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Good Lord Aussie!!!!!!!!!!! Take that down!!! It's depressing...
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Quoting Floodman:
My home town

Fulton MO


OMG are you serious, I have never experienced temps like that. I don't think i ever will.
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Quoting eyesontheweather:
I grew up in Northern MI. and have been away from cold weather for 30 years, now i move to OK it gets pretty cold and seems extreme to me.

Your comment reminds me of how the grandparents would often say the weather is about to change due to an ache or pain in a healed wound or scar


There are studies that say that's nonsense, but I have 4 bolts and a carbon fiber lattice in my back that says otherwise
Member Since: August 2, 2006 Posts: 10 Comments: 9922
An old favorite I came across...thought specifically of Grothar and Portlight.

"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion.
If you want to be happy, practice compassion."
-Dalai Lama

Link
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Quoting Floodman:
I have to tell you eyes, before I had the surgery, it couldn't get cold enough for me...after, though and I get the chills pretty easy. Hope that changes; bitterly cold crisp mornings are my favorite!

those bitterly cold mornings do wonders for clearing out your sinuses.
Member Since: August 3, 2008 Posts: 16 Comments: 5891

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Jeff co-founded the Weather Underground in 1995 while working on his Ph.D. He flew with the NOAA Hurricane Hunters from 1986-1990.

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