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Earthquake hits Nicobar Islands

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Andaman Nicobar, 14 March: An earthquake measuring 5.9 on Richter Scale hit Nicobar Islands Region around 08:21 AM today.

However, no injury or damage reported.

According to the IMD, the earthquake, termed moderate, occurred at a point 6.4 degrees north latitude and 92.2 degrees east longitude in Nicobar Islands.

 Wefornews Bureau

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Disaster

Cyclone Gaja to cross Tamil Nadu on November 15

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Chennai, Nov 13: Cyclone Gaja, which is currently centred over the Bay of Bengal, is likely to weaken and cross the Tamil Nadu coast between Pamban and Cuddalore on November 15 by forenoon, according to the Met. 

Before it weakens, there would be rough to very rough sea conditions along and off Tamil Nadu-south Andhra Pradesh coasts from Wednesday morning and high swelling sea during that night.

The fishermen, who were in deep sea have been directed to return to coasts immediately.

As per the Indian Meteorological Department (IMD) bulletin, Gaja has been moving westwards with a speed of five kmph in the past six hours.

At 5.30 a.m., the cyclonic storm was centred about 750 km east of here and 840 km east-northeast of Nagappattinam.

It was anticipated to intensify further into a severe cyclonic storm in a span of the next 24 hours by Wednesday and maintain that intensity till Thursday. “It is very likely to move west-south-westwards,” IMD stated.

At the time of landfall, storm surge of height of up to one metre above astronomical tide was expected to inundate low lying areas of Nagappattinam, Thanjavur, Pudukkottai and Ramanathapuram districts of Tamil Nadu and Puducherry’s Karaikal district.

A total suspension of fishing operations along and off north Tamil Nadu and Puducherry and adjoining south Andhra Pradesh coasts during November 13 to 15 has been advised.

WeForNews 

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Disaster

44 killed in California wildfires

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San Francisco, Nov 13: The three raging wildfires in California have killed 44 people since it started last week, a record number of deaths from a wildfire in the US state, officials said.

Of the 44 people killed, 42 died in Northern California’s Camp Fire, while two others were killed in the Woolsey Fire in Malibu, Butte county Sheriff Kory L. Honea told the media on Monday night.

Honea said more than 200 people remain missing in and around the wooded town of Paradise in northern California, which sits in the foothills of the Sierra Nevada and was popular with retirees, The New York Times reported.

The Camp Fire which broke out in Paradise on the morning of november 8, has already burned about 117,000 acres, destroyed 6,453 homes, and was only about 30 per cent contained.

“My sincere hope is that I don’t have to come here each night and report a higher and higher number,” Sheriff Honea said.

Camp Fire, which continues to rage in the hills and ravines east of the city of Chico, is also the most destructive fire in California history, with more than 7,100 structures destroyed, most of them homes.

Meanwhile, an estimated 435 structures have been destroyed in the Woolsey Fire west of Los Angeles, up from the 177 figure provided on Sunday night.

Another 57,000 structures were believed to be under threat.

The blaze, which is 30 per cent contained and has charred more than 90,000 acres in communities like Malibu and Thousand Oaks.

The third blaze known as the Hill Fire has ripped through 4,500 acres in Ventura county. It was 85 per cent contained as of Monday, according to Cal Fire.

President Donald Trump on Monday evening said on that he had approved a request to declare the fires in California a major disaster, making people affected eligible for various types of federal government support.

According to the National Weather Service, weather conditions were forecast to worsen in Southern California, where the Woolsey and Hill Fires are raging, The New York Times reported.

Much of that region will face critical fire weather conditions through Tuesday afternoon, with low relative humidity, no rain and a high-wind warning in effect for the mountains. it added.

The strong winds propelled a new brush fire in Simi Valley on Monday morning, which quickly spread to cover about 105 acres before firefighters brought in under control.

IANS

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Disaster

California wildfire kills 9, ravages celebrity homes

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San Francisco, Nov 10: Two fast-moving wildfires that exploded in the Southern California hills have claimed nine lives and forced thousands to flee their homes, including the entire city of Malibu, a sprawling naval base and many Hollywood celebrity homes.

Fanned by ferocious Santa Ana winds and fueled by dry tinder, the fires immolated a mountain town and jangled the nerves of many tens of thousands of residents forced to evacuate their homes.

The blazes thus far have proved to be unstoppable, operating at flash-flood velocity. The big wildfire here in Southern California, known as the “Woolsey Fire”, quadrupled in size by Friday evening, covering more than 22 square miles, with no containment.

It easily jumped eight-lane Highway 101 and rambled over the Santa Monica Mountains to posh Malibu, where it torched homes and cars. The wildfire then finally ran into its only match so far: the Pacific Ocean, the Washington Post reported.

The bulletins from the northern part of the state were even worse. At least nine people died in or near their homes or vehicles as they tried to outrace the “Camp Fire” that started on Thursday morning, has devastated the mountain town of Paradise, about 90 miles north of the state capital, Sacramento.

Among the celebrity homes reportedly damaged — if not destroyed — was the home of Caitlyn Jenner, who posted an Instagram video reporting that she was in a safe house, but wasn’t sure what has become of her home.

Other celebrities in southern California who have reported on social media that they were evacuated from their homes due to the fast-moving fires include Lady Gaga, Kim Kardashian West, her sister Kourtney Kardashian and Mark Hammill.

Among the properties destroyed by the Woolsey Fire was the Paramount Ranch in Agoura, where hundreds of movies and television shows, including HBO’s “Westworld”, have been filmed, stretching back to the 1920s.

The freeway was closed in both directions near the Liberty Canyon Road exit due to “very active fire conditions”, authorities said.

The California fire season normally begins in late spring and lasts through summer.

But hot, dry weather has persisted this year well into autumn, and the winter rains have yet to arrive. The Santa Ana winds, which blow out of the Sierra Nevadas and toward the western coastline, are building into howling gales that dry the vegetation and the soil, creating potentially explosive fire conditions.

IANS

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