Thursday, 20 July 2017

This is what a weather bomb looks like

This is what a monsoon rain looks like in the Arizona desert, seen here hitting Phoenix area.

Terrifying clouds engulfs Kaluga in Russia

Hail stone storm in Spain killed sheep and wrecked cars

Incredible footage has emerged showing a giant hail storm that struck Spain killing sheep and smashing cars.

Hail stones the size of golf balls hammered down during the freak downfall which was captured on camera in the north of the country.

People sprinted for cover as dark clouds gathered while pictures later emerged of sheep lying dead in a field.

Windscreens were smashed to pieces and car bodywork was dented as hail peppered the landscape and wrecked property.

Video picks up the sound of the hailstones pounding the rood of one building and thudding into the ground outside.

It is not yet known whether the storm, which struck on July 13, caused any injuries.

The freak conditions were the latest to hit Spain this month.

Footage emerged of a hail storm hitting the town of Almazan, just outside the city of Soria - also in northern Spain.

It was so strong that emergency crews needed snow ploughs to clear the streets.

Another storm this month saw hail lash down on Murcia in southern Spain.

Hail falls after drops of water are continuously taken up and down through cumulonimbus clouds. When the drops go to the top of the cloud, they freeze.

Cumulonimbus clouds can grow especially large during summer when hot sun heats the ground causing warm air to rise.

Updraughts in thunderclouds are big and can keep hailstones for a long time, meaning they can get larger and larger by becoming coated with more and more ice, according to the Met Office.

Eventually, when they become too big for the cloud to hold, they fall to earth as balls of ice.

Wildfire outside Yosemite causes mass evacuations

California wildfire explodes in size as blazes scorch U.S. West

19 July, 2017

MARIPOSA, Calif. (Reuters) - A wildfire that has forced thousands of Californians to flee their homes exploded in size on Wednesday, threatening a picturesque gold rush town outside Yosemite National Park as dozens of blazes scorched the U.S. West.

More than 2,000 firefighters have contained just 7 percent of the Detwiler Fire, which is approaching the town of Mariposa and tiny communities in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada mountains, the Cal Fire state agency said on its website.

The blaze has mushroomed to 48,000 acres (19,424 hectares), an increase of about 23,000 acres (9,307 hectares) compared with the day before. The fire has destroyed 29 structures and is threatening some 1,500 more structures, local media reported.

Firefighters are facing "extreme and aggressive fire behavior" with solid walls of flame and sparks from the main blaze setting spot fires in grasslands, the California Department of Forestry and Fire Protection (Cal Fire) said.

Flames have destroyed eight structures southwest of Yosemite National Park and the fire is threatening power lines to the park, but no one has been injured, Cal Fire said.

The small communities of Coulterville and Greeley Hill were ordered evacuated on Wednesday.

Mariposa's 2,000 residents were told to leave town on Tuesday after its power and water links were damaged. In total, nearly 5,000 people are under orders to vacate their homes, officials said.

Many summer vacationers visit Mariposa, which is largely dependent on tourism.

The town, taking its name from the Spanish word for butterfly, was founded during the California gold rush in the 19th century and is surrounded by pine-covered hillsides. It boasts the state's oldest law court, built in 1854 in a Greek Revival style and topped with a clock tower.

The town's hospital, called the John C. Fremont Healthcare District, and its 14 patients did not evacuate, at the advice of fire officials, said the facility's interim CEO Matthew Matthiessen.

Moving the mostly elderly patients could endanger their health, he added. "If we can keep them here and limit that stress and they're safe, then that's what we're going to do."

The California blaze was among 37 active large fires spread across 12 western states as of Wednesday, according to the National Interagency Fire Center's website.

Governor Jerry Brown declared a state of emergency for Mariposa County on Tuesday, dispatching resources to the area

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