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Strongest Typhoon of the year Meranti hits Taiwan

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Taiwan, 14 September: The strongest storm in the world of this year Super Typhoon Meranti has brought parts of Taiwan to a standstill after ten thousands of homes lost power in the area.

Schools and businesses were closed and flights were cancelled in most eastern and southern counties while trains running along the east coast have been halted — affecting travel for the Mid-Autumn Festival long weekend which starts Thursday.

Taiwan’s Central Weather Bureau had alerted that the Category 5 storm would affect several southern and eastern cities, including Kaohsiung and Hualien, accompanied with strong winds, torrential rain and flooding.

Meranti, which grew in strength as it reached close to Taiwan, with a maximum speed of winds 216 km per hour (134 mph), said meteorologists.

The storm lead to the damage of power cables and trees in the areas.

“This typhoon is the world’s strongest so far this year,” weather bureau spokeswoman Hsieh Pei-yun said. “Its impact on Taiwan will peak all day today.”

Companies and schools in Kaohsiung and other cities have closed and almost 1,500 residents have been evacuated, the Central Emergency Operation Center said in a statement.
Nearly 200,000 households were without power, according to the Taiwan Power Co. Most domestic flights have been cancelled, including all of those from Kaohsiung airport, where international flights were also severely affected.

Taiwan will feel the full force of the typhoon through Wednesday and into Thursday before the storm barrels into China, meteorologists said.

Meranti is expected to trigger landfall in the southern Chinese provinces of Guangdong and Fujian on Thursday, where authorities were already cancelling train services and preparing to evacuate people, state media said.

Typhoon Meranti hits the island just after two months of the deadly typhoon Nepartak which cut power, grounded flights and forced thousands to flee their homes across central and southern areas of Taiwan.

In 2009, Typhoon Morakot cut a swath of destruction through southern Taiwan,claiming 700 lives and causing up to $3 billion of damage.

Wefornews Bureau

Cities

Earthquake hits Madhya Pradesh’s Singrauli region

Earthquake in Madhya Pradesh’s Singrauli: The earthquake hit the region at around 7.44 PM on Tuesday.

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Earthquake

An earthquake of magnitude 4.6 struck Madhya Pradesh’s Singrauli region on Tuesday. The earthquake hit the region at around 7.44 PM on Tuesday. No casualties or loss of property has been reported so far.

(This is a breaking news story; more details awaited)

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Earthquake to hit NCR creates fear among people

The scientists reached the conclusion of a devastating earthquake hitting Uttarakhand based on a study conducted in 2017.

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The news of an earthquake measuring more than eight on the Richter Scale may strike Delhi-NCR with Gurugram as its epicentre between April 7 and 15 has been viral on the internet.

Another prediction of a devastating quake to hit Uttarakhand, Himachal Pradesh and Nepal is also circulating which has instilled fear and panic among the people of the states.

The argument put forward by Piyush Rautela, Executive Director of Disaster Mitigation and Management Centre (DMMC) is “Frequent mild earthquakes in the hills of Uttarakhand should not be dismissed as common occurrences but treated as pointers to a major earthquake which is long overdue in the central seismic gap of the Himalayan front spanning Himachal Pradesh, Nepal and Uttarakhand.”

Rautela said the damage will be more in the thickly populated urban areas where there has been a rapid and unplanned growth of population and infrastructure.”

A message has been circulating of a warning that an earthquake measuring 9.1 on Richter scale would strike Delhi-NCR between April 7 and April 15 attributing the information to American space agency National Aeronautics and Space Administration. But it is a hoax as scientists are yet to find ways to predict earthquakes.

Seismologists, however, are of the view that no proven method exists for predicting earthquakes with any accuracy and the best way to save lives from Earth’s wrath is to beef up construction standards and educate people about seismic risk.

The scientists reached the conclusion of a devastating earthquake hitting Uttarakhand based on a study conducted in 2017.

The surface of the earth sits on several gigantic tectonic plates that move by a few centimeters known as faults that develop each year. Most devastating earthquakes had occurred in the Indian sub-continent. In fact, geographical statistics show that at least 54 percent of India’s land is vulnerable to earthquakes and India has four seismic zones, I, II, III, IV and VII being the lowest and V being the highest.

But for sure preparedness remains the best defense against devastating earthquakes.There must be an investment in preparedness such as early warning systems, tsunami systems, relocation of people from locations deemed to be vulnerable to disasters.

Five districts in Uttarakhand having population approximately 3-3.5 million on the Indo-Nepal and Indo-Tibet borders come in seismic zone V.

A State-wide mega mock disaster management drill was conducted by the Gurgaon district administration in December 2017. The governments of Delhi and NCR region should play a proactive role by checking the authenticity of the prediction by the National mitigation Disaster Management institution and engaging themselves to participate in the mitigation of natural disasters.

The central government should also discourage the construction of a skyscraper on the lines of Japan which also falls in the seismic zone.

 

By Arti Bali

Sr Journalist

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Disaster

6.8-magnitude quake hits Bolivia: USGS

Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) boffins issued a warning and forecast hazardous waves from the coast.

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A HUGE 6.8 magnitude earthquake has struck Bolivia in the Ring of Fire. It occurred near Tarija in the south of the country at a depth of 344 miles. The USGS estimates there is a 34% chance of damage and fatalities.

Its website states: “Overall, the population in this region resides in structures that are resistant to earthquake shaking, though vulnerable structures exist.

“The predominant vulnerable building types are adobe block and rubble/field stone masonry construction.”

The South American country is located in the Ring of Fire, a basin of the Pacific Ocean prone to seismic activity.

It occurred 96 miles from the town of Kokopowhich, home to about 20,000 people.

Pacific Tsunami Warning Centre (PTWC) boffins issued a warning and forecast hazardous waves from the coast.

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