'MONSTER' storm hits Sydney with giant HAIL and tornado warnings
Sydney has been smashed by a 'very dangerous' storm that's seen a popular Westfield evacuated after the roof collapsed.
A tornado warning have been issued for Sydney and surrounding areas as the wild weather lashed Australia's east coast.
The Bureau of Meteorology issued the urgent weather warning to 'people in parts of the Blue Mountains/Hawkesbury, Greater Newcastle, Gosford, Wyong, Sydney and Greater Wollongong areas,' on Thursday afternoon.
Damaging winds, large hailstones and heavy rain have battered western with Penrith and Blacktown copping bearing the brunt of the system.
So far are no injuries have been reported but firefighters and police are working to secure the area.
'We've had quite an escalating storm situation within Sydney metropolitan area. As of around a half an hour ago, we have seen rotation within a thunderstorm which is moving through,' senior meteorologist Jordan Notara told 2GB radio on Thursday afternoon.
'We haven't as yet had any observations on the ground but the signatures that we are seeing on the radar are indicative of something that will produce damaging … wind gusts, large giant hail, again, quite a dangerous situation.'
© Provided by Daily Mail MailOnline logo
The low pressure system is expected to move down the coast in the next 24 hours with weather warnings issued for residents from Queensland to Victoria.
NSW residents as far inland as Goulburn and Orange in the central west could feel the brunt of mother nature from Thursday night.
The ACT is also forecast to experience similar wet La Niña conditions as the wild weather system intensifies.
Queensland's south east has already been battered by rain and lightning since the early hours on Thursday morning.
Melbourne metro and areas across Victoria are experiencing some wet weather conditions as the low pressure system brings rain for the rest of the week.
Meteorologist Jonathan Howe said conditions were making it possible for tornadoes to form in south-east Queensland.
'Today, the ingredients for a tornado really do line up. We cannot predict where they are going to form but the environment is there to see these super events,' he told the Today show.
'The advice is keep an eye on any of the advice is keep an eye on any of the warnings because when they do crop up they cause a lot of problems.'
The Bureau of Meteorology's David Wilke said thunderstorms forming yesterday will turn into full-blown monster storms on Thursday.
'We're going to see a cold front moving through NSW ... it's going to bring pretty widespread areas of showers and storms and some reasonable rain through the southern part of the state,' he said on Wednesday.
Hail the size of tennis balls are also forecast for parts of these areas, as well as regions around Goulburn, Orange and Port Macquarie in NSW.
Queensland's south east is already experiencing torrential rain and flash flooding alerts have been issued after a massive thunderstorm struck this morning.
A severe thunderstorm warning is in place for Brisbane and Moreton Bay.
Brisbane, the Gold Coast and Toowoomba have been pelted by torrential rain and lightning since the early hours of Thursday morning, with over 50mm falling in one hour at Dalby on the Darling Downs.
'Dalby copping an absolute monster at the moment,' local resident Adam Ogden said to The Courier Mail.
Thunderstorms are often small area events, which means some communities may experience intense weather activity while locations nearby aren't affected.
Hazards may include damaging winds, heavy rain, and large hail and flash flooding is possible in some locations around the east coast.
Recent rain has left catchments in those areas wet and many dams are near capacity, so there's the potential for more rain to cause rivers to rise and flooding.
These heavier than expected rainfalls are looking more likely during the summer months after the BOM raised its ENSO outlook from a La Niña 'watch' to 'alert' on Tuesday.
Conditions are expected to begin easing after Thursday, but there's still the possibility of thunderstorms on Friday.
SA and Tasmania are feeling the effects of the low pressure system as showers and chilly temperatures are forecast for Adelaide and Hobart in the coming days.
Over in Perth, cloud cover and showers are expected towards the end of the week, with highs reaching the low 30s.
Hobart is also experiencing the wet weather with rain forecast for the rest of the week and temperatures not surpassing 18 degrees.
While remaining warm, Darwin is expecting showers and possible storms for the remainder of the week.
Meteorite crashes through roof of Canada woman’s home and on to bed
A woman in Canada awoke in shock earlier this week when a rock crashed through the ceiling of her home and landed on her bed, narrowly missing her but spraying grit and other debris on her face, as her dog barked frantically.
Police were called and the culprit was initially suspected to be a construction site nearby, where work must have sent the fist-sized projectile onto the woman’s pillow. But when the construction workers said they had not set any blasts – but had just seen an explosion in the sky – the consensus quickly became that the rock was a meteorite, the Canadian Press reported.
© Provided by The Guardian Photograph: Trustees of the Natural History Museum/PA
Ruth Hamilton had been fast asleep in Golden, a small town amid the Rocky Mountains, in British Columbia, on 3 October when her dog began barking and she woke with a start.
“I’ve never been so scared in my life,” she said. “I wasn’t sure what to do so I called 911 and, when I was speaking with the operator, I flipped over my pillow and saw that a rock had slipped between two pillows.”
It turned out there had been a meteorite shower in the skies above the western Canadian region that night. Hamilton plans to keep the space rock and is very relieved she wasn’t injured.
“I was in shock and I just sat here for a few hours shaking,” she said. “The odds of that happening are so small so I’m pretty grateful to be alive.”
Reference: Guardian staff and agencies
Wham! bassist, Deon Estus, has died aged 65
Deon Estus, the bassist for pop band Wham!, has died aged 65.
Estus was a highly regarded bass player who also performed and recorded with Elton John, Marvin Gaye, Annie Lennox and Tina Turner.
His official Twitter page confirmed his death: “It is with real sadness I post that Deon Estus passed away this morning. Deon was mostly known as the third member of Wham! Deon was passionate about music and loved interacting with his loyal fans.”
Estus’ partner, Brenda Kaye Pearce, also wrote on Facebook: “My dearest, closest partner and significant other of 4 years transitioned and all I can remember is our last conversation the day before. My heart will need time to heal. RIP Deon. Love you forever.”
He joined Wham! as a touring bass player in the 1980s and went on to become a member of George Michael’s backing band after the pop star chose to pursue a solo career.
The bass guitarist played on the incredibly popular Faith tour and toured with Michael until his death in 2016.
He also released a solitary solo album. Entitled Spell, the majority of it was produced by Michael and reached number 89 on the Billboard albums chart.
Estus found greater success with the single, “Heaven Help Me” which peaked at number 5 and featured Michael on backing vocals.
Co-founder of Wham! Andrew Ridgeley took to Twitter to pay tribute: “V sad news today of Deon Estus’ death, A lavishly gifted bass guitarist, a charismatic and impish character and a rock of the Wham! rhythm section.”
He added: “He lives large in the memory, he radiated warmth, humour and life’s illuminating light, my heartfelt commiserations go out to his family.”
Wham! backing singer, Shirley Kemp also offered her condolences: “Shocked to hear the passing of such a lovely man. Spent so many years with Deon touring with Wham!. God bless. RIP.”
No cause of death has yet been confirmed.
Reference: Independent: Sam Moore
‘This comforter of blue’: how Shatner’s blast into space became an ode to Earth
There’s nothing like a vacation to make you appreciate home.
That seemed to be the sentiment behind William Shatner’s words as he returned from a brief journey to space on Wednesday. In remarks filmed after he landed, the actor described having had “the most profound experience I can imagine”.
But his focus wasn’t on boldly going where few have gone before. What left him most in awe was viewing Earth – “this sheet, this blanket, this comforter of blue that we have around us” – from far away. Space, according to Shatner, was “black ugliness”, a bleak contrast with the beauty of our home planet. “You look down [at Earth], there’s the blue down there, and the black up there, it’s just – there is Mother Earth and comfort, and there is – is there … death? I don’t know.”
It’s remarkable. When Captain Kirk finally achieves liftoff, he ends up reflecting on where he came from.
© Provided by The Guardian Photograph: Mario Tama/Getty Images
It’s perhaps even more remarkable given the driving force behind Shatner’s flight – the man to whom he said: “I hope I never recover from this” – is Jeff Bezos, founder of Amazon and owner of Blue Origin. Bezos nodded as Shatner rhapsodized, but his own approach to the future is quite different.
Bezos’s vision involves colonizing space – a trillion people living away from our home planet, in “very large structures, miles on end”, that “hold a million people or more each”. His belief, according to a 2019 presentation, is that “the Earth is finite, and if the world economy and population is to keep expanding, space is the only way to go”. He isn’t fully writing off this planet – the presentation was titled Going to Space to Benefit Earth – but his focus appears to be on humanity’s departure.
To be fair, Bezos has also pledged to donate $10bn to fighting the climate crisis (though he started a company whose carbon footprint in 2018 was the size of Norway’s). But perhaps Shatner’s words can serve as a reminder that the Earth is what we have, and we should fight for it. “This is life,” Bezos said, echoing his passenger. Let’s hope he believes it: with a little more help from those with endless resources, we might even be able to wring a few extra years out of this place. In the meantime, let’s celebrate where we live – below “this sheet, this blanket, this comforter of blue”.
Reference: The Guardian: Matthew Cantor
Rotting Red Sea oil tanker could leave 8m people without water
The impact of an oil spill in the Red Sea from a tanker that is rotting in the water could be far wider than anticipated, with 8 million people losing access to running water and Yemen’s Red Sea fishing stock destroyed within three weeks.
Negotiations are under way to offload the estimated 1.1m barrels of crude oil that remains onboard the FSO Safer, which has been deteriorating by the month since it was abandoned in 2017. The vessel contains four times the amount of oil released by the Exxon Valdez in the Gulf of Alaska in 1989, and a spill is considered increasingly probable.
The oil will spread well beyond Yemen and cause environmental havoc affecting Saudi Arabia, Eritrea and Djibouti, according to the latest modelling, which is unlike previous studies because it examines the impact more than a week after the spill.
Three-way talks between the Houthi rebels, the UN-recognised government of Yemen and the UN have foundered, despite repeated warnings, including at the UN security council, of the impact if the tanker explodes, breaks up or starts leaking. UN officials have been unable to secure guarantees to maintain the vessel, including its rotting hull, which is now overseen by a crew of just seven.
The modelling is published in the journal Nature Sustainability on Monday and showed the spill was likely to lead to the closure of the Red Sea ports of Hodeidah and Salif within two weeks, threatening delivery of 200,000 tonnes of fuel for Yemen, the equivalent to 38% of the national fuel requirement. Fuel prices are likely to rise by as much as 80%, and the absence of fuel for water pumps will result in 8 million Yeminis being deprived of running water. As many as 2 million will lose access to water if desalination plants in the region become polluted.
© Photograph: AP Houthi rebels have prevented the UN from inspecting the ship and three-way talks with the Yemeni government have stalled.
Although half of the oil is anticipated to evaporate on the sea within 24 hours, the rest will within six to 10 days reach Yemen’s western coastline, and ports further south in three weeks.
The numbers in need of food assistance vary from 5.7 million to 8.4 million people, depending on whether the spill reaches ports in the south, such as Aden. The estimates depend on the season when the the spill occurs and the extent of the oil loss.
The spill will threaten 66.5%-85.2% of Yemen’s Red Sea fisheries within one week, and 93.5%-100% of those fisheries within three weeks, depending on the season.
The effects of air pollution from a spill, including increased risk of cardiovascular and respiratory hospitalisations, range across 11.3m person-days for a slow-release winter spill to 19.5m person-days for a fast-release summer spill.
Red Sea coral reefs, which have been studied for their unique resilience to seawater warming, would also be threatened.
Related: 16 million in Yemen ‘marching towards starvation’ as food rations run low – UN
The report in Nature Sustainability warns: “The spill could hinder global trade through the vital Bab el-Mandeb strait, 29 km wide at its narrowest point, through which 10% of the global shipping trade passes. Exclusion zones created for clean-up could reroute traffic, and shipments will be delayed as ships potentially exposed to oil will require cleaning”
It adds: “The possibility of a spill is increasingly likely. The visibly dilapidated Safer is single-hulled, meaning a breach will cause the onboard oil to spill directly into the sea. Water entered the engine room in May 2020 through a seawater-pipe leak, and the vessel’s fire extinguishing system is non-operational. A spill could occur due to a leak or combustion.
“A leak could arise through continued deterioration of the vessel’s hull or by breach of the hull due to inclement weather; combustion could occur through build-up of volatile gases aboard the vessel or direct attack on the vessel.”
The UN has been seeking Houthi permission to inspect the ship, but the Houthis want undertakings that the vessl will also be repaired, an exercise that requires money the UN does not have available.
Reference: The Guardian: Patrick Wintour Diplomatic editor
Articles - Latest
- 'MONSTER' storm hits Sydney with giant HAIL and tornado warnings
- Meteorite crashes through roof of Canada woman’s home and on to bed
- ‘This comforter of blue’: how Shatner’s blast into space became an ode to Earth
- Wham! bassist, Deon Estus, has died aged 65
- Rotting Red Sea oil tanker could leave 8m people without water
- Ex on the Beach star Chris Pearson dies aged 25 after LA stabbing
- William Shatner's space launch on Blue Origin's New Shepard: When to watch and what to know
- James Brokenshire, ‘the nicest man in politics’, dies aged 53 after battle with cancer
- Perseverance images confirm Jezero crater is an ancient Martian lake
- Work by pioneering sculptor goes on display to mark Black History Month
- Luisa Mattioli dead: Italian actress and third wife of Roger Moore dies aged 85
- London flooding: The most dramatic pictures and videos as commuters left stranded
- After 3.5 million-year hiatus, the largest comet ever discovered is headed our way
- Bridgerton stylist Marc Pilcher dies of Covid
- Emergency clean-up launched as huge oil spill kills wildlife and closes beaches in California
- Tributes paid as former head of Royal Marines 'takes own life' aged 54
- Controversial French tycoon and former minister Bernard Tapie dies at 78
- Marie Antoinette's secret love 'affair' with Swedish count revealed by x-ray technology
- Rare images revealing 19th century China set to fetch £20,000
- Alan Lancaster death: Status Quo founding bassist dies aged 72
Articles - Most Read
- Contact Us
- Cosmic Consciousness - What is Cosmic Consciousness-2
- Cosmic Consciousness-Introduction
- Cosmic Consciousness - Introduction-2
- Cosmic Consciousness - What is Cosmic Consciousness?
- Cosmic Consciousness First Words - 1V - 2
- Cosmic Consciousness First Words - V -
- The Human Condition-Thomas Keating
- Cosmic Consciousness V - 2
- Cosmic consciousness - First Words - IV
- Cosmic Consciousness-On the Plane of Self Consciousness
- Drinking From The Mountain Stream - Milarepa
- The Human Condition - 4
- Evolution and Devolution-Chapter 2
- The Human Condition - Thomas keating-3
- The Human Condition-2-Thomas Keating
- Evolution and Devolution-Chapter 1
- Cosmic Consciousness - 3 - On the Plane of Self Consciousness
- The Human Condition - 6
- Milarepa's World
- Web Links
- On the Plane of Self Consciousness - 2
- The Human Condition - 5
- Milarepa's World-2
- The Buddhist System of Liberation
- On the Plane of Self Consciousness IV
- Contemplation and the Divine Therapy - 2
- On the Plane of Self Consciousness IV - 2
- The Buddhist System of Liberation - 2