Weather

Czech Republic reports twelfth death in floods

Czech Republic reports twelfth death in floods Prague - Flash floods in the northern Czech Republic claimed a twelfth victim, after a volunteer fireman drowned in the city of Jesenik, local media reported Saturday.

This week's flash floods in the eastern Czech Republic killed 11 people, officials said Friday. Rescuers were searching for a missing rafter who was assumed to have drowned in the country's south.

In the country's north, as many as 500 soldiers have been deployed as emergency aid workers. Meteorologists fear further rains may worsen the situation over the weekend.(dpa)

Flood alert in western Hungary, capital braces for wet weekend

Flood alert in western Hungary, capital braces for wet weekendBudapest - Parts of Hungary were on high flood alert on Thursday morning after a tributary of the Danube swelled to its highest level in over four decades, the local news agency MTI reported.

The Raab River rose to nearly 5 metres above its normal level in the western town of Szentgotthard, on Hungary's border with Austria.

This is 30 centimetres higher than a record set in 1965, when a major flood devastated large areas of western Hungary. Since then, however, flood defences have been built up along the river.

Six die amid floods in north-eastern Czech Republic

Six die amid floods in north-eastern Czech RepublicPrague - At least six people died overnight amid floods in northeastern Czech Republic, police said Thursday.

Four people were confirmed to have drowned, and two others died, although the cause of death had not yet been ascertained, police spokeswoman Miroslava Michalkova Salkova told the German Press Agency dpa.

"We can't rule out that there will be more victims," she said.

The victims lived nearby northeastern town of Novy Jicin, an area which has been hit the hardest by the floods.

Austrian flood situation stabilizes after three days rain

Austrian flood situation stabilizes after three days rainVienna - Flood levels stabilized Thursday in parts of Austria after three days of heavy rain.

"The worst seems to be over," a meteorologist at Vienna's central weather station told national broadcaster ORF radio.

Several towns near major river systems remain flooded in the provinces of Upper and Lower Austria in the northeast of the country, ORF said. Some of them Lower Austria were not accessible by road.

Dismal conditions at Ludhiana Zoo

Dismal conditions at Ludhiana ZooLudhiana, June 24 : As the mercury continues to rise, it has become increasingly difficult for animals to beat the heat at the ill-equipped Ludhiana Zoo.

The zoo authorities are finding it tough to provide relief to hapless animals in a temperature of 45 degree Celsius.

Animals have been provided with air coolers and straw mats in their enclosures, but they are not operational because of the long power cuts.

Hurricane warning in Mexico as Tropical Storm Andres gets stronger

Hurricane warning in Mexico as Tropical Storm Andres gets stronger Mexico City - As Tropical Storm Andres approached on the Pacific, the Mexican government Tuesday issued its first hurricane warning of the season.

According to the Miami-based US National Hurricane Centre, the storm - which was about 110 kilometres south of the southwestern Mexican port of Manzanillo on Tuesday
- was forecast to grow into a hurricane Tuesday. Measures were implemented to protect the population in coastal areas.

Government under pressure if present heat trends continue

Government under pressure if present heat trends continueNew Delhi June 23 : The slowdown in the southwestern monsoon, since June7 has put the Government under pressure, as India is likely to face a major agricultural crisis if the present trend in the weather continues.

The delayed monsoons may put the livelihood of millions of farmers at risk, as over 60 per cent of Indian agriculture is rain fed.

Season's first tropical storm heads to Mexico's Pacific coast

Season's first tropical storm heads to Mexico's Pacific coast Mexico City - Mexican authorities issued an alert Monday for towns near the country's southern Pacific coast as Andres, the first tropical storm of the season, starts to form.

The alert ranged from the port of Zihuatanejo, in the state of Guerrero, to Manzanillo in the state of Colima.

Thousands evacuated as floods, storm hit southern China

Beijing - Officials have evacuated more than 260,000 people as floods and a tropical storm hit two separate areas of southern China, the government said on Monday.

Floods in the south-western region of Chongqing left at least eight people dead and three missing, forcing the evacuation of 106,000 people by early Saturday, the Ministry of Civil Affairs reported.

A total of 220 millimetres of rain fell on many areas of Chongqing from Friday to Sunday, destroying 6,603 homes and damaging 15,218 others, the ministry said on its website.

The storms also ruined about 4,800 hectares of crops, bringing estimated direct economic losses of 400 million yuan (59 million dollars), it said.

Tornado rips off roofs, uproots trees in Philippine capital

Tornado rips off roofs, uproots trees in Philippine capitalManila - A tornado struck a suburb of the Philippine capital Manila Thursday, ripping off the roofs of several houses and uprooting trees.

No one was hurt when the tornado hit a group of houses near the University of the Philippines in suburban Quezon City, said Nathaniel Cruz, the country's chief weather forecaster.

"It was a relatively strong tornado," he told the German News Agency dpa from the scene. "Some of the roofs of the houses were thrown on top of trees. Electric posts were toppled."

How green is Obama, really?

How green is Obama, really?Washington - The newest calculations by the US government on climate change are nightmarish.

The level of carbon emissions released into the Earth's atmosphere will surge nearly 40 per cent by 2030 if governments can't force more limits on gases blamed for global warming, the Energy Information Administration (EIA) projected earlier this week.

The report sent a clear warning to negotiators who start meeting Monday in Bonn, Germany, to seek consensus on a post-Kyoto agreement before the final meeting in December in Copenhagen.

Flash floods kill 6 in Vietnam

Flash floods kill 6 in VietnamHanoi - Six are dead and two missing after three days of flash floods damaged hundreds of homes in central Vietnam, an official said Thursday.

The floods hit the central provinces of Nghe An and Binh Dinh between Monday and Wednesday.

Nguyen Thi Phuong, a disaster official in Nghe An Province, said the first flood struck at about 10 pm Tuesday, washing away a home where a family of five were sleeping.

"We found the bodies of three people about six kilometers away yesterday," Phuong said.

India cyclone death toll reaches 100, situation grim

India cyclone death toll reaches 100, situation grimNew Delhi - The death toll from cyclone Aila that pummelled India's West Bengal state reached 100 as the affected regions faced a severe drinking water crisis while power-outages led to protests in the state capital Kolkata, news reports and officials said Thursday.

Three days after the cyclone hit India's eastern coastal region leaving a trail of destruction in its wake, vast areas remained submerged, affecting a total of 5.1 million people.

Cyclone Aila toll rises to 87 in West Bengal

Cyclone Aila toll rises to 87 in West BengalKolkata, May 27 : `Cyclone Aila' has claimed 87 lives in West Bengal.

Sixteen of the 87 dead were victims of a landslide in North Bengal.

Chief Minister Buddadeb Bhattarcharjee reviewed the situation after visiting Nimpith area in South 24 Parganas on Tuesday.

Railway Minister Mamta Bannerjee also came with a bevy of officials and conducted a survey of the devastation.

Cyclone Aila kills 82 in eastern India, rescue work on

Cyclone Aila kills 82 in eastern India, rescue work onNew Delhi - The death toll from cyclone Aila that battered India's West Bengal state rose to 82 as authorities feared that tidal surges triggered by the storm had killed more than a dozen of the highly endangered Royal Bengal tigers, officials and reports said Wednesday.

Although the cyclone that hit coastal West Bengal and its capital Kolkata on Monday eased, heavy rains lashed the region through Tuesday, causing landslides and claiming more lives, officials in the state's emergency department said.

Death toll from cyclone rises to 34 in Bangladesh

Death toll from cyclone rises to 34 in BangladeshDhaka - The death toll from cyclone Aila that pounded parts of Bangladesh's coasts Monday rose to 34 as rescuers reported more bodies in the devastated areas, local administrations and media reports said Tuesday.

The Food and Disaster Management Ministry confirmed 34 deaths in 13 cyclone-battered administrative districts on the coastline.

Storms lash the Netherlands

Storms lash the NetherlandsAmsterdam - Hail, rain and strong winds battered the Netherlands Tuesday, felling trees, creating localised flooding and causing major road and rail disruption.

The Dutch meteorological institute KNMI said wind speeds of more than 105 km/h caused trees to fall on roads and rail tracks, resulting in long delays throughout the country for commuters.

In the southwest of the country, hailstones of more than 5 cm were recorded.

There were more than 300 km of traffic jams on the Dutch roads, with the A20 near Rotterdam entirely closed off in both directions due to flooding and fallen trees.

Barroso: Public and private sector needed to tackle climate change

Barroso: Public and private sector needed to tackle climate changeCopenhagen - The public sector alone cannot tackle climate change, EU Commission President Jose Manuel Barroso warned Monday at a climate conference in Copenhagen.

"In tackling climate change, public sector action will not be enough," Barroso said in his remarks to around 1,000 business leaders, adding that "all parties, policy makers, business and consumers" need to combine.

Two killed as cyclonic storm heads towards India's eastern coast

Two killed as cyclonic storm heads towards India's eastern coast New Delhi - At least two people were killed as a storm hit India's eastern metropolis of Kolkata hours before cyclone Alia was expected to make a landfall on India's eastern coastal areas Monday, news reports and officials said.

"Two persons were killed when a tree collapsed in the city, while 32 roads have been blocked by falling trees," Kolkata's police chief Goutam Mohan Chakraborty told the PTI news agency as the city experienced heavy rains and wind speeds up to 80 kilometres per hour.

Coast, islands inundated as cyclone Aila heads toward Bangladesh

Coast, islands inundated as cyclone Aila heads toward BangladeshDhaka - Many low-lying coastal districts and offshore islands on the Bay of Bengal have gone underwater as cyclone Aila heads toward Bangladesh, officials and local residents said Monday.

Bangladesh's Meteorological Department has asked its maritime ports to hoist danger signal number seven. The highest danger signal is number 10.

The department forecast that low-lying areas of at least 15 administrative districts and major islands in the bay are likely to be inundated by wind-driven surges between one and two meters above normal tide.

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