From James Munley@21:1/5 to All on Mon Dec 20 16:55:27 2021
WORLD WEATHER HIGHLIGHTS
Thick fog blanketed Moscow from late Monday into Wednesday morning, causing hundreds of flights to be canceled in one of the biggest travel disruptions to impact the Russian capital in a decade (1st-3rd0. More than 200 flights were cancelled or delayed
at Moscow's major airports on Tuesday. The delays appeared to be the most since an ice storm blanketed the city in December 2010. On Wednesday, the return of fog led to another 60 flight cancellations or delays. Visibility was quickly reduced on Monday
evening when the fog first settled across the city. Observations from across the city showed that the visibility fell to near zero for as much as 14 consecutive hours. At several locations, temperatures fell below freezing overnight, which may have also
led to ice forming on some surfaces.
A severe dust storm that started in southern Kazakhstan hit parts of Uzbekistan in the evening, growing under favorable weather conditions into the worst since the country started keeping meteorological records in 1871 (4th). The worst affected were
Tashkent and the southern Syrdarya Region, and Kazakhstan's Turkestan Region. According to the country's meteorological service - Uzhydromet, under the influence of gusts of wind, the parched upper layer of soil rose up, creating the effect of a dust and
sand haze, with visibility just 100-200 m in a number of districts in the country.
Heavy blizzards in some parts of north-eastern China have brought record snowfall, raising concerns about keeping homes warm in an area hit by power outages earlier this year (7th-11th). In the capital city of Shenyang, in Liaoning province, average
snowfall reached 50 cm. This is the highest recorded snowfall since 1905, said state outlet Xinhua. In neighboring inner Mongolia, one person died and more than 5,600 were affected after a heavy snowstorm.
Heavy showers and thunderstorms have caused severe flooding in the southern Indian city of Chennai (8th). No deaths have been reported, but officials in the state of Tamil Nadu, of which Chennai is the capital, have issued warnings to evacuate people
from low-lying areas. Local media footage showed uprooted trees and cars submerged as water quickly rose to block roads. This is the heaviest rainfall in the city since 2015.
Authorities in the Indian capital, Delhi, have shut all schools and colleges indefinitely amid the worsening levels of air pollution (17th). Construction work has also been banned until 21 November but an exception has been made for transport and defence-
related projects. Only five of the 11 coal-based power plants in the city have been allowed to operate. A toxic haze has smothered Delhi since the festival of Diwali.
At least 26 people have been killed and more than 100 remain missing after heavy rains caused massive floods in parts of Andra Pradesh, southern India over the past couple of days. Many homes, roads, and bridges have been damaged or destroyed and
livestock swept away (18-20th).
A potent storm system moving over the Sea of Japan brought heavy sea-effect snow to parts of Japan, in some areas breaking all-time 24-hour snowfall records (23rd-24th). Shumarinai recorded 77 cm of snow over 24 hours, setting its new all-time 24-hour
snowfall record. Meanwhile, Nayoro registered 60 cm, setting its new 24-hour snowfall record for the month of November.
Severe flash floods hit the Indonesian island of Java, claiming the lives of at least 8 people and leaving three others missing (4th). The worst affected were Malang and the city of Batu where floods and mudslides inundated homes and destroyed bridges.
The National Disaster Mitigation Agency said that rivers on the slopes of Mount Arjuno overflowed their banks and their muddy waters inundated five hamlets in Kota Batu, a city in East Java province.
Heavy rains affecting Bosnia and Herzegovina caused severe flash flooding in parts of the country, causing power outages and forcing evacuations (4th-5th). Hundreds of homes in the Sarajevo suburbs, along the rivers Bosnia, Tilava, and Zeljeznica, and in
the southwest part of the country, around the town of Konjic, had to be evacuated on Friday under unrelenting heavy downpours that started falling on Thursday. Most parts of Sarajevo were left for hours without electric power on Friday morning due to the
flooding of one of the main substations on the outskirts of the city.
One person was killed and two others injured after a tornado hit the Italian island of Sicily (17th). The twister affected Trebalate, Serrameta, Sant' Elena, and Bosco in the southeast of the island, downing trees, collapsing walls, and causing a great
deal of damage to businesses, farms, and infrastructure.
A severe thunderstorm struck Malta in the morning, sweeping away cars in many parts of the country and blocking roads (25th). The worst affected were Msida, Gzira, Mosta, and Naxxar. Teams from Malta's civil protection, police, and military rescued
several people trapped in floodwaters. Two civil protection officers got into difficulty while rescuing a man trapped in his car in Burmarrad and had to be airlifted to safety. According to data provided by the country's meteorological service, an
average of 74.6 mm of rain was registered today, with Selmun registering a total of 107.6 mm in 24 hours. November is usually Malta's wettest month, with an average of 108.6 mm falling over the country.
An extremely rare November tornado hit the city of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada at 1710 PDT (0110 GMT, 7 November) (6th). The event started as a waterspout over the Strait of Georgia which then came ashore and caused minor damage at the University
of British Columbia (UBC) and immediate vicinity. The tornado was rated as EF-0 with wind speed between 90 and 110 km/h. It caused broken trees/tree limbs, scattered tree debris, uprooted trees, downed power lines, and caused damage to vehicles due to
falling tree branches. The last time a tornado hit Vancouver was on 25 July 1976. The last time a tornado hit the Vancouver area was on 10 March 1991. All past tornadoes in the area occurred from March to July, according to the Northern Tornadoes Project.
A powerful storm rapidly intensified over British Columbia, Canada, bringing heavy rain, powerful wind gusts, and heavy snow to mountain passes (9th). This is the third potent low to hit the region in less than three weeks. This is the third system in
less than three weeks that has reached 'weather bomb' criteria, which is a system whose pressure drops at least 24 hPa in 24 hours.
Another round of heavy rain caused by an atmospheric river caused major flooding and landslides in southern British Columbia, Canada, and parts of Washington and Oregon in the United States (14-16th). Some parts of the region received nearly 250 mm of
rain. At least 106000 customers lost power in British Columbia and another 140000 in neighboring Washington state, U.S. The worst affected was British Columbia where rivers overflowed, and authorities were forced to close roads and bridges. As many as
100 vehicles were trapped between two landslides on Highway 7, a scenic route running east of Vancouver. The entire area was then evacuated before rescue operations halted Monday night. Two motorways connecting the West Coast city were closed after being
damaged by severe flooding on Tuesday. A woman was killed in a highway landslide, and rescuers say at least two other people are missing.
Exceptional rainfall totals have been recorded in Queensland and Northern Territory, Australia overnight 9thand 10th, as a potent storm moved over the region. Residents are being urged to prepare for potential flooding across parts of Queensland, New
South Wales and Victoria as Bureau of Meteorology experts forecast heavy rain and thunderstorms for the rest of this week. Overnight 9th/10th phenomenal rainfall totals fell in parts of Queensland and Northern Territory, Australia, with the area north of
Rockhampton in Queensland receiving more than 300 mm and Alice Springs in Northern Territory recording 100 mm. The 24-hour rainfall total registered in Alice Springs has not been this high since 30 January 2001.
Scorpions in Egypt have stung three people to death in the southern city of Aswan after heavy storms brought them into the streets and homes (12th-13th). Some 450 more people were injured by scorpion stings, a health ministry official said. The hail and
thunderstorm in the area near the River Nile on Friday was particularly violent. Scorpions are regularly washed into the streets by heavy rain, while snakes have also been disturbed. People have been urged to stay at home and avoid places with many trees.
Egypt is home to fat-tailed scorpions that are among the most deadly in the world. Venom from a black fat-tail can kill humans in under an hour.
A severe windstorm hit Turkey's city of Istanbul, leaving at least 4 people dead and 38 others injured (29th). Turkey's weather agency issued an orange-level storm warning (3 of 4) for 17 provinces, and a yellow alert (2 of 4) for 35 provinces ahead of
the storm. The storm brought powerful winds, blowing away at least 33 roofs, knocked down 52 traffic signs, uprooted 192 trees, and damaged 12 cars, the Istanbul municipality officials said. A clock tower blew over because of the heavy wind in the
Catalca district. Also, two trucks and one pickup truck overturned in Catalca
A severe hailstorm classified by the South African Weather Service as a superstorm, hit the town of Lydenburg in Thaba Chweu Local Municipality, Mpumalanga highveld during the afternoon hours (14th). Some of the hailstones were larger than golf and
cricket balls. The storm hit Lydenburg, including Badfontein Road, Dullstroom Road (R36), and the Burgersfort Road (R37), resulting in severe property and vehicle damage. The Kannabas and Kiepersol Housing Units for the elderly were left in a
particularly bad state with severe roof damage.
A severe hailstorm hit the city of Klerksdorp, in South Africa's North West Province, causing widespread damage (25th). The storm flooded roads and damaged the roofs of many homes and businesses. This is the third destructive hailstorm to hit South
Africa over the past 3 weeks.
A massive hailstorm hit the Spanish city of Alicante, Valencia in the morning. The hailstorm was preceded by large amounts of rain in a very short period (23rd). According to AEMET, a weather station in Alicante registered 46 mm of rain in just 25
minutes. The Alicante-Elx airport registered 58 mm of rain in less than an hour, including 39.6 mm in 20 minutes. Photographs show the hail lying 15 cm deep in places.