Strong Storm Slams California

A massive storm rolled into northern California on Thursday, knocking out power, flooding highways and toppling trees.

Strong winds contributed to the death of a 40-year-old homeless man who had been sleeping on a trail when a tree fell on him.  An elementary school student survived in what local officials called a miracle after an 80-foot tree fell on him.  He is listed in good condition at a hospital.

“It’s a big storm, as we expected, and it’s headed south with very powerful winds and heavy rainfall,” National Weather Service meteorologist Will Pi told Fox News.

Parts of Southern California that are prone to mudslides have been evacuating ahead of the storm.  At least one apartment complex was entirely evacuated because of previous slides in the area.  Lumberjacks in the San Bernardino National Forest were putting concrete weights on lumber stacks to keep them from collapsing from the high winds.

Many stores have been blocking their doors with sandbags in anticipation of flooding.

California officials are concerned about the San Bernardino Mountains because of the wildfires in the last few years that has devastated the vegetation and made the land primed for major mudslides.

The storm is also expected to dump feet of snow in the mountains and ski resort operators say they expect to have over three feet of new snow by the weekend.

Midwestern Tornadoes Leave Six Dead

At least six people are confirmed dead after a Sunday outbreak of tornadoes across the Midwest.

The town of Washington, Illinois was devastated by a massive tornado that tore an 1/8th mile wide track through the entire town. Mayor Gary Manier said that up to 500 homes have been damaged or destroyed and that some neighborhoods are completely destroyed.

“How people survived is beyond me,” Manier said.

The tornadic storms are considered unusual for mid-November. Damaging winds and tornadoes were reported in 12 states: Michigan, Iowa, Illnois, Wisconsin, Indiana, Ohio, Kentucky, Missouri, Tennessee, West Virginia, Pennsylvania and New York.

The storms moved so fast at times that weather forecasters were warning people to see shelter even before they could see a change in the weather.

The storm threatened the Chicago area forcing the game between the NFL’s Chicago Bears and Baltimore Ravens to be delayed for two hours as teams and spectators huddled under the stadium.

Storm Leaves 13 Dead Across Europe

A storm with wind gusts near 120 M.P.H. roared across Europe on Monday leaving at least 13 people dead.

At least three were killed when they were crushed under falling trees and the heavy rains and high winds swept at least one woman out to sea. A teen girl in England died when a tree fell on the mobile home her family was living in while their main house was renovated.

Power outages reached 42,000 in northern France and over 600,000 homes in England.

German meteorologists recorded a record 119 m.p.h. wind gust in the North Sea.

The storm’s intensity reached the point that German officials had to stop all train service in the country and all shipping ports were closed for the duration of the storm.

Cyclone Phailin Leaves Hundreds of Millions In Damage

Relief groups have begun to operate in eastern India after Cyclone Phailin caused hundreds of millions in damage to property and crops.

Indian officials had forced one million people to flee the oncoming storm resulting in a low death toll. Eighteen people have been reported dead from the massive storm, seventeen in Orissa. In 1999, a cyclone killed 10,000 people in that region.

Authorities said they were better prepared this time. One official told the BBC it was the biggest evacuation in the nation’s history.

The cyclone made landfall on Saturday with sustained winds of 125 m.p.h. Trees have been uprooted throughout the region along with power lines destroyed and cell phone towers toppled.

Officials say at over 1,900 square miles of crops have been destroyed causing a loss of at least $320 million dollars.

Millions Still Lack Electricity After Super Storm

Over two million people are still without power and the death toll has risen to 18 in the aftermath of a weekend storm that roared across the eastern United States. Maryland, West Virginia, Virginia, Ohio and the District of Columbia have declared states of emergency due to the disaster.

Power is reported out along the eastern seaboard from New Jersey to North Carolina and as far west as Illinois.

Compounding the problem is a record heat waves that is keeping daytime temperatures at and over 100 degrees. Many residents have no access to air conditioning or refrigerators. Continue reading