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Windstorm Xynthia Causes 45 Deaths in Western Europe

48.8N 2.3E

March 1st, 2010 Category: Winds

France - February 28th, 2010

France - February 28th, 2010

At least 45 people have been killed in storms that have lashed parts of Spain, Portugal and France, officials say. Forty of the victims died in western France, where many drowned or were hit by parts of buildings or falling trees.

The windstorm system, named Xynthia, has put five of the 95 French departments on red alert – only the second such warning since the new emergency system was introduced in 2001. Here, the storm can be seen over northern France. Upon opening the full image, Spain and Portugal are visible to the south, and Norway can be seen to the north.

Winds of up to 140km/h (87mph) caused chaos as they moved from Portugal up through the Bay of Biscay. Upon reaching Paris, wind speeds hitting 175km/h at the top of the Eiffel Tower, were reported. The storm system is moving north-eastwards and was expected to reach Denmark by the evening of the 28th, French meteorological authorities said.

Worst affected are the Vendee and Charente-Maritime regions on the western coast of France. Huge waves and strong gusts battered many coastal towns, spreading floods inland and destroying buildings. Residents took to their roofs in the Vendee region and police helicopters were in action attempting to locate and rescue them.

At least a dozen people are said to be missing in France and 59 others injured. In Germany, a man was killed and his wife injured when a tree fell on their car in the Black Forest region. Earlier on Sunday a falling tree killed two Spanish men in a car near Burgos. A Spanish woman was killed by a falling wall in Galicia, and a Portuguese boy was killed by a tree in Paredes.

More than a million homes in France have lost electricity. Rail services were severely affected in northern Spain and a number of trains in western France were delayed because of flooded tracks. Air France said 70 of its flights had been cancelled from Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris. Spain’s Canary Islands, particularly La Palma, Gran Canaria and Tenerife, were also hit by the storm, although there was no great damage.

Italy Hit by Storms on First Day of Summer

40.9N 14.0E

June 22nd, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Italy - June 21st, 2009

Italy - June 21st, 2009

Summer got off to a tragic start in Italy as an atmospheric disturbance brought severe downpours, whirlwinds and rough seas, causing seven deaths in 36 hours.

The storms also disrupted transportation on land and sea, and city infrastructures were damaged by water and high winds.

At least half of the country was touched by storms, although the most affected regions were Apulia, Latium and Tuscany. Here, the skies over Italy gradually clear as the disturbance moves away.

Disturbance over Patagonia, Argentina

January 29th, 2009 Category: Lakes, Rivers

Disturbance over Patagonia, Argentina - January 27th, 2009

Disturbance over Patagonia, Argentina - January 27th, 2009

Close-up of lakes

Close-up of lakes

A disturbance (top) looms over the provinces of Neuquén and Río Negro, in Argentine Patagonia.

The Neuquén River and several lakes can be seen south of the disturbance. The city of Neuquén is located at the fork in the river. The river south of the fork is called the Limay.

North of the fork is Pellegrini Lake, is an artificial lake  at approximately and 270 m above sea level. This reservoir was originally a natural depressed area that was later filled with water brought by a derivation channel from the nearby Neuquén River.

West of Pellegrini Lake is the Cerros Colorados Complex, a group of dams and hydroelectricity generation facilities.

The body of water south of the Cerros Colorados Complex is a reservoir created by the El Chocón Dam, which is part of the same engineering scheme as the Complex. The dam  is used to regulate the flow of the Limay River, for irrigation, and for the generation of hydroelectricity.

source Wikipedia

Storm Brewing Over Japan

January 13th, 2009 Category: Snapshots

Weather patterns over northern Japan - January 13th, 2009

Weather patterns over northern Japan - January 13th, 2009

A storm over Japan takes on an interesting swirled cloud pattern. Hokkaido is completely covered by clouds, as is most of Honshu, although the area around Tokyo can still be seen. The storm is expected to strengthen rapidly throughout the day tomorrow.

In the morning, while the storm is relatively weak, Japan will experience some clouds and scattered rain and snow showers.

As the storm strengthens, winds will pick up and the precipitation will become heavier. Areas of substantial rain and snow are expected by the late afternoon.

Meanwhile, clouds and precipitation associated with the storm will likely develop over the Korean Peninsula, southeastern Russia, and northeastern China on Wednesday, although any precipitation over those areas will be light.

Heavy flooding in Sardinia, Italy

October 23rd, 2008 Category: Floods

Storm over Sardinia, Italy - October 22nd, 2008

Storm over Sardinia, Italy - October 22nd, 2008

Movement of storm over Sardinia

Movement of storm over Sardinia (Meteosat IR/Eumetsat)

In the main image to the left, we can see a strong storm that hit the island of Sardinia, Italy, on October 22nd, 2008.

On the right, we have an enhanced image showing a detail of the storm as it looms over the Sardinian coast and an animated image showing its movement.

The storm caused heavy flooding, especially in Cagliari and the surrounding area, as it caused streams to overflow their banks.

The newspaper il Corriere della Sera has reported three deaths and three disappearances in Cagliari due to the storm and resulting floodwaters.

Storm over Sardinia - 3D map

Storm over Sardinia - Earth View Projection

Storm over Sardinia - overall image

Storm over Sardinia - overall image

Storm over Sardinia - enhanced image

Storm over Sardinia - enhanced image

Image Close-ups

Cars flung about by floodwaters (Giuseppe Ungari/Ansa)

Cars flung about by floodwaters

Forest ranger checks dike embankments (Giuseppe Ungari/Ansa)

Forest ranger checks dike embankments

Great damage has also been caused to many homes, buildings, city infrastructure and vehicles, as is visible in the photographs.