Natural disasters

The New Madrid fault – and yet it moves

Seismologists take a look at the aftershock activity on this intra-plate seismic zone and then make a Monty Python joke. Unfortunately, it’s not funny… Study: New Madrid fault zone alive and active. The New Madrid fault zone in the nation’s midsection is active and could spawn future large earthquakes, scientists reported Thursday. It’s “not dead…

“Sinkhole” swallows houses in Brazil (UPDATE: Houses collapsed due to poor foundation)

This occurred in Brazil, in a town called Abaetetuba, in the northern state of Para. I’m currently looking into it. Updates to follow. Note this video is speeded up. It does not happen quite so quickly as depicted. NOTE: This is commonly referred to on mystery mongering sites as “earth changes” signaling some massive pattern of destruction.…

New paper on earthquake lights show they are a reality

I am so excited about this story. As a geologist who has studied anomalous phenomena connected to earthquakes, this is an excellent step forward to understanding earthquake lights. This will be of interest to Forteans, anomalists, geophysicists and even UFO chasers! Scientists find records of rare “earthquake lights”. They’ve been mistaken for UFOs or dismissed…

It’s just the normal noises here: Booming Kentucky, then a quake

A sharp-eyed reader sent me this story about an earthquake last week in Kentucky that was preceeded by a mystery boom days before. Related? It’s a possibility. Small early-morning quake recorded in Bath County | State | Kentucky.com. A relatively small earthquake early Monday morning shook parts of Bath County, the Kentucky Geological Survey said.…

Expert debunks Fukushima radiation as link to starfish catastrophe

In November, we brought you links to the disturbing story of the starfish wasting syndrome. The cause is unknown. The cause is STILL unknown. However, blame has fallen on Fukushima radiation for a huge array of real and imaginary problems noted in the Pacific. Here’s why this problem is NOT related to the Fukushima disaster.…

Pyrocumulus clouds over Australia

The unique weather phenomenon, pyrocumulus clouds, are predicted to occurs in Australia as a large fire influences an unstable atmosphere. The clouds are formed because of the heat and combustion products of the fire. Inferno expected to generate abnormal, high-altitude cloud. A bizarre weather phenomenon known as a fire cloud is likely to form over…

Madagascar faces plague epidemic

Recall that not long ago, we had a report of the plague in Kyrgyzstan. Now, we have an issue in Madagascar. BBC News – Madagascar bubonic plague warning. Madagascar faces a bubonic plague epidemic unless it slows the spread of the disease, experts have warned. The Red Cross and Pasteur Institute say inmates in the…

Florida will kill you

There may be something to this “Strange Florida” thing. Bizarre causes of death are common in Florida – Sun Sentinel. Welcome to Florida, where something’s always trying to kill you. The Sunshine State is the lightning-strike capital and the shark-bite capital. We have hurricanes, tornadoes, stealthy sinkholes, rabid raccoons, abandoned pythons, venomous spiders and, yes,…

Stop passing these scary stories about Fukushima fish around social media!

Much is being made in the news about the Fukushima radiation leakage catastrophe. Yes, it’s bad. It’s troublesome, but it’s currently not global. If it was, we’d be hearing more about it, not from questionable scare-blogs. First, we saw a graphic of what was said to be radiation spreading across the ocean. That was a…

Ants may behave differently before an earthquake, research says

A new study on animal prediction of earthquakes Ant-icipation: Insects know when earthquakes are coming Ants with the world’s worst taste in real estate seem to sense earthquakes before they strike, according to research presented Thursday at the European Geosciences Union annual meeting in Vienna. Research on ants in Germany showed that they follow regular…

Judge in Italian earthquake trial justifies decision against scientists

It sent shockwaves across the scientific community: scientists convicted of failing to adequately warn of a deadly earthquake in Italy. The judge goes on record to explain why he felt they were guilty of negligence. Judge in L’Aquila Earthquake Trial Explains His Verdict – ScienceInsider. The L’Aquila judge who last October sentenced seven scientists and…

Just nuke it! NOAA explains you can’t just bomb a hurricane.

There is the problem of scale and directing and focusing the energy. US weather agency NOAA responds to demands to nuke hurricanes | The Courier-Mail. The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has led its Hurricane Research Division’s frequently asked questions page with an extraordinary – even for America – statement: “During each hurricane season,…

Guilty verdict in earthquake trial: Scientists convicted for failing to give warning

This is a very disturbing outcome (an update to this story). Italian scientists convicted over earthquake warning – chicagotribune.com. An Italian court convicted six scientists and a government official of manslaughter on Monday and sentenced them to six years in prison for failing to give adequate warning of a deadly earthquake which destroyed the central…

Don’t flip out over magnetic pole reversal

2012: Magnetic Pole Reversal Happens All The (Geologic) Time Scientists understand that Earth’s magnetic field has flipped its polarity many times over the millennia. In other words, if you were alive about 800,000 years ago, and facing what we call north with a magnetic compass in your hand, the needle would point to ‘south.’ This…

Use of animals to predict earthquakes may be viable but fraught with difficulties

BBC Nature – How animals predict earthquakes. Animals may sense chemical changes in groundwater that occur when an earthquake is about to strike. This, scientists say, could be the cause of bizarre earthquake-associated animal behaviour. Researchers began to investigate these chemical effects after seeing a colony of toads abandon its pond in L’Aquila, Italy in…

Lessons in communicating a message from the L’Aquila earthquake trial

Trial Over L’Aquila Earthquake Focuses on Risks and Panic – NYTimes.com. An update on the trial of scientists and an official regarding the L’Aquila earthquake… The manslaughter trial of six seismologists and a government official in the central Italian city of L’Aquila, stemming from what the authorities say was a failure to warn the population…