|AROUND THE WORLD TODAY
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Subject: Around the World Today: Sunday 31st January 2010
SPAIN: An earthquake rocked the bay of Palma de Mallorca at 07.09hrs yesterday morning. Emergency services confirmed the quake reached 3.2 on the Richter
scale not severe enough to be life-threatening, but sufficient to lead to widespread panic and cause minor property damage.
GERMANY: German Police say helicopters and dogs are searching a mountain region in southern Bavaria after it was hit by an avalanche. Police told the news
agency DAPD that there were reports of several missing people after the avalanche in the Alps Sunday morning. Two rescue helicopters and one police helicopter as
well as mountain rescue crews from nearby Kempten are combing the area.
NEW ZEALAND: Flooding and slips have closed roads, prompted evacuations and isolated rural communities as heavy rain continues to hammer the eastern North
Island. Gisborne was particularly hard-hit on Sunday, with heavy rain leading to the evacuation of more than 20 people and forcing the closure of two major roads in
the region. Widespread slips and flooding prompted the closure of State Highway 5 between Napier and Taupo about 2pm.
RUSSIA: Over 200 children, most of them younger than three years, have been hospitalized with acute intestinal infection in the Magadan Region in the Russian Far
East, reported on Sunday. Doctors believe the children were poisoned after eating imported fruits - bananas, apples and citruses - largely supplied from China. Local
health authorities are taking measures to contain the spread of the virus. Doctors say the virus has affected whole families in the area, with children hit hardest.
CHINA: At least one person was killed and eleven others were injured in an earthquake that hit southwest China's Sichuan province, reported on Sunday. The
earthquake measuring 5.0 points on the Richter scale struck the province early on Sunday. More than 100 houses were destroyed by the tremor. The earthquake's
epicenter was near the city of Suining, which has a population of 3.8 million and is located 140 km (87 miles) east of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan.
HUNGARY: The Hungarian weather services declared a red alert in the centre of the country, saying up to 20 centimetres of snow was expected, adding that the
eastern region would be affected on Sunday. With snowfall already causing transport delays, Budapest airport was temporarily closed for snow to be cleared from
Subject: Around the World Today: Saturday 30th January 2010
BOLIVIA: Bolivian President Evo Morales has declared a state of emergency in areas of the country, as heavy rains and floods affect some 24,000 families. The
worst-hit areas are La Paz, Santa Cruz, Cochabamba, Chuquisaca and Beni. The flooding is expected to get worse as more rain is forecast. Rivers have broken their
banks and overflowed. There have been mudslides.
GERMANY: Heavy snowfall causes traffic chaos across Germany with 300 accidents in one region alone and three deaths nationwide.
MARSHALL ISLANDS: In Marshall Islands, a public health emergency has been declared. This has happened following an outbreak of drug-resistant tuberculosis.
The government is thinking of calling upon special powers of quarantine. In less than two months the number of people with the drug-resistant disease has risen from
six to 10 in the western Pacific nation. Everyone now fears that the situation would escalate and will reach to 500.
HAITI: Haiti's desperate earthquake survivors faced a new threat Friday as the United Nations reported a rise in cases of diarrhea, measles and tetanus in squalid tent
camps for victims. A vast foreign aid effort is struggling to meet survivors' needs 17 days after the disaster, which killed around 170,000 people and left one million
homeless and short of medicine, food and water.
USA: Texas - Officials are trying to find the cause of a pneumonia outbreak at the federal prison in Big Spring. By Friday, 25 cases of an unknown type of pneumonia
had been identified from an inmate population of 1,707. Initially, two inmates were diagnosed in November, according to a statement from the prison. The institution
is under normal operations, and visitation has not been affected. Those who are diagnosed with pneumonia are being housed separately for 48 hours and responding
well to antibiotics, according to the statement. The prison is working with health officials "for further evaluation to assist in identifying the exact cause of the
GERMANY: Currently an investigation is ongoing to explore and control an outbreak of Legionnaires' disease affecting 65 people as of 22 Jan 2010, in the cities of
Ulm and Neu-Ulm, southwest Germany. A hitherto unidentified wet cooling system in these twin cities is considered as the most likely source of infection. On 5 Jan
2010, Ulm University Hospital informed the local health office of a cluster of hospitalisations due to community-acquired pneumonia caused by Legionella
pneumophila serogroup (sg) 1. As of Fri 22 Jan 2010, 65 cases including 5 deaths were under investigation by the local and regional health authorities.
Subject: Around the World Today: Friday 29th January 2010
that is more likely to die from H5N1 infection. The new report also shows a connection between early treatment and recovery.
that is more likely to die from H5N1 infection. The new report also shows a connection between early treatment and recovery.
BOLIVIA: A landslide in the Bolivian capital of La Paz has destroyed at least 72 homes as occupants were still sleeping. More than one hundred families were affected
when the slide struck in the early morning hours on Thursday. Local authorities prepared to evacuate more homes as a preventative measure. The Vice Minister of
Civil Defense said their efforts will also focus on humanitarian aid as most of the victims lost everything.
CHINA: Hong Kong - One person was killed Friday when a rundown building collapsed in Hong Kong, while at least four others were missing and believed to be
trapped in the rubble, government and emergency officials said. The residential block, which was more than 50 years old, collapsed in Hung Hom, in Hong Kong's
Kowloon district, police said.
INDONESIA: The local husbandry agency in East Lampung regency, Lampung, reported Friday that a bird flu outbreak has killed hundreds of fowl in three districts
during the first month of the year. At least 1,176 fowl had died of the deadly flu in seven villages in the Sukadana, Purbolinggo and Marga Tiga districts during
January. The number was bigger than the total number of fowl killed by bird flu throughout last year, which was 708.
USA: Oklahoma - A powerful storm dumped snow, sleet and freezing rain on Oklahoma and the southern Plains Thursday, disrupting power to thousands of
Oklahoma homes and businesses, canceling flights at the state's largest airports and shutting down major highways. Ice accumulations of more than one-half inch
and high winds snapped electrical lines across Oklahoma, knocking out electrical power to about 57,000 homes and businesses.
NIGERIA: 18 persons have reportedly died of ailments suspected to have been caused by measles outbreak in the riverine settlement of Owukoro, Southern Ijaw local
government area of Bayelsa State. Most of the victims, according to reports, were children and young people. Sources told Vanguard that the outbreak of the
epidemic might be connected with resistance of the locals to immunisation due to religious beliefs.
PERU: About 1,400 tourists have been airlifted from near the Inca ruins of Machu Picchu in Peru following floods that destroyed road and rail links. A break in the
weather allowed the government to send in helicopters, but about 800 tourists are still stranded.
CHINA: The death toll from the continuing freezing temperatures and record snowfalls in northwestern China's Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region rose to 20, local
authorities said. The number of injured people rose to 1,304. The number of damaged houses has risen to 31,000.
Subject: Around the World Today: Thursday 28th January 2010
No information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Wednesday 27th January 2010
No information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Tuesday 26th January 2010
RUSSIA: A fire at a Moscow university dormitory has been put out, a police source told RIA Novosti on Tuesday. Some 300 people were evacuated early on
Tuesday from a dormitory of the Moscow State University of Geodesy and Cartography. Russia has an appalling fire-safety record. Over the last few years, Russia
has seen a number of deadly blazes at schools, universities, hospitals and other public places.
MONGOLIA: The United Nations has warned that extreme winter weather has killed more than a million livestock in Mongolia. The organisation said this was likely
to harm the country's food supply and worsen poverty. It said 19 of Mongolia's 21 provinces had been hit by heavy winter snow and -40C temperatures.
HAITI: EU MIC UPDATE - The number of confirmed deaths is 112,250 (OCHA SitRep 12), while the Haitian Ministry for Communication has mentioned the figure
of 150.000 deaths, for bodies collected in and around the capital by state company CNE (BBC). Search and rescue phase is officially terminated. According to the
latest information, 133 persons were extracted alive by the rescuers, but the figure is still to be fully confirmed. The EU CP Team Alpha has left Haiti. EU CP Team
Bravo is operational since 23.01.2010, and it includes 7 experts. So far, 24 European countries (Austria, Belgium, Bulgaria, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France,
Germany, Greece, Hungary, Iceland, Ireland, Italy, Luxemburg, Malta, Netherlands, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Slovakia, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, and UK) are
providing assistance to Haiti through the EU Civil Protection Mechanism including urban search and rescue (USAR) teams, health, shelter, water, hygiene, clothing.
The local Government is seeking for tents to set up hosting centers and have asked to be informed by the international community, as soon as possible, how many
tents are in country (and the capacity of hosting people) and how many are still in the pipeline. The MIC has started to compile relevant info from PS regarding the
total hosting capacity of shelter items sent to Haiti. The Port-au-Prince port is partly working now, at its southern pier has been repaired and re-opened. At least 4
cargo ships have now been able to dock at Port-au-Prince, Haiti, to deliver relief supplies. The portâ€™s main northern pier remains closed.
PERU: Peruvian highway police said that two thousand tourists have been stranded near the ruins of the ancient Machu Picchu citadel, after torrential rains caused
mudslides, blocking the train route that goes from the site to Cusco. Soledad Caparo, a spokeswoman for Perurail commented that the train operator suspended
service earlier today, and is trying to remove the mud that is blocking the rail.
Subject: Around the World Today: Monday 25th January 2010
RUSSIA: More than 200 people are suffering from poisoning in the east Siberian city of Irkutsk caused by "holy water" taken from wells during religious ceremonies
of Epiphany, the local consumer regulator said on Monday. Church officials denied the poisoning cases are due to sanctified water. The number of victims has hit
228 as of Monday, 114 of them are in hospital, Rospotrebnadzor said. Earlier reports said 40 people were hospitalized with symptoms of poisoning last week. The
regulator said tests showed that water from the city's Archangel Michael Church corresponded to sanitary norms, but samples taken from two nearby wells and a
swampy lake revealed the concentration of chloride and nitrate was two times above the norm.
PERU: The heavy rains that are hitting Cusco these days have generated at least 40 mudslides in the region, that have in turn caused several damages and even some
deaths. Isabel Champi (52) and her six months old grandson died when a wall fell down in the district of Santiago, after the Vilcanota river flooded and destroyed
houses, crops and public infrastructure along the Sacred Valley.
TURKEY: Snowstorms, heavy rains, and extreme weather conditions affected large parts of Turkey on Saturday, causing traffic jams and flooding a number of
houses. Heavy snowfall in the north has blocked road access to more than 550 villages, while temperatures have plummeted to -15 Centigrade. Municipality workers
have been striving to keep the roads open despite the continuing snowfall, which is expected to last until next week.
LEBANON: An Ethiopian Airlines plane with about 90 people on board has crashed into the Mediterranean Sea shortly after takeoff from Beirut, Lebanese aviation and
security officials said. The Boeing 737-800 took off for Addis Ababa from Beirut at 2:10 a.m. local time Monday, according to the officials who spoke on condition
of anonymity because they are not authorized to speak publicly. The plane disappeared from the radar about five minutes after takeoff. Police ruled out terrorism as
the cause of the crash and said it was likely weather-related. It has been raining heavily and there was lightning in Beirut since Sunday night.
Subject: Around the World Today: Sunday 24th January 2010
No information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Saturday 23rd January 2010
No information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Friday 22nd January 2010
HAITI: EU MIC Report - A second Mechanism team was deployed to Haiti today to reinforce cooperation of the international relief effort. Member States continue to
provide assistance to Haiti. For example, Slovenia offered 25 family tents, AT offered 400 family tents and HU will deploy a medical team. The USAR operation is
slowing down. Some teams have already left and remaining teams have started to plan for their demobilisation. The total number of live rescues is so far 126. Aid is
getting through to more and more locations. Water is available at many water points throughout Port-au-Prince but quality remains an issue. WFP has provided
around 3 million meals to more than 200,000 people. The goal is to distribute 10 million meals over the next week, reaching 100,000 people a day. Tens of thousands
of people still do not have access to shelter. The Government is identifying sites for temporary settlements. Untreated injuries, infectious diseases and sanitary
conditions remain a priority concern to prevent death. Some 150 planes are landing daily at the Port-au-Prince airport and another 1,000 planes are waiting to get in.
The road from the Dominican Republic remains the best option for the majority of incoming cargo. The Port-au-Prince port is functional and can receive 250
containers per day, with the goal of 350 containers per day by 25 January. The UN Stabilization Mission in Haiti (MINUSTAH) issued a request for a team (minimum
two) of certified structural engineers to assess the damages on MINUSTAH premises, and possibly others belonging to the Government of Haiti, in order to determine
the safety and usability of the buildings. MIC invited the Participating States to nominate experts through CECIS. They would be dispatched as EU technical experts.
ALBANIA - EU MIC Report: From the operational point of view, the emergency is focused now on humanitarian actions for helping the displaced people and those in
needs. Currently, the situation in affected areas is as follows. 4.964 ha of land are flooded, 1.643 persons have been evacuated, 135 houses are flooded, 473 people
are accommodated in reception centres. Albanian Government is determined to compensate all the damages in housing and agriculture and to rehabilitate the area as
soon as possible. The main priorities for the Albanian Civil Emergency Structures are: treatment of the evacuated population, security of territory, health and
humanitarian support for affected population, hygienic and infections control. The EU Mechanism Team has ended the mission in Albania on Saturday, 16 January
2010. All experts have safely arrived home.
GERMANY: A leak in a uranium enrichment plant in Germany exposed an employee to a high level of radiation but posed no danger to people outside the facility, the
firm operating the plant said on Friday. The employee was taken to hospital as a precaution, a spokeswoman for the German subsidiary of British nuclear firm Urenco
said. None of the radiation escaped, the company added. "There is no danger to the public. The necessary authorities were informed straight away," Urenco said in a
statement. The North Rhine-Westphalia local authority is studying a report into the incident. The plant is located near Germany's border with the Netherlands and has
been in operation since 1985.
SPAIN: Mayor of Madrid, Alberto Ruiz-GallardÃ³n, said that the action of the fire service avoided a tragedy in the capital on Thursday night. They had been called to
a building in the Bravo Murillo area of the city after residents saw cracks and heard groans from their building. They ordered the immediate evacuation of seven
families who were out of the block at 9,20pm on Thursday night, and at 10pm the whole building collapsed. There were no injuries. First indications are that the
collapse was caused by the recent rains which had affected the cement of the structure.
USA: Virginia - A Virginia doctor said a meteorite crashed through the roof of his office building and trashed a room only 10 feet from where he was filling out
paperwork. Frank Ciampi said he was in his office at Williamsburg Square Family Practice in Lorton, where he has worked for 18 years, just after 5:30 p.m. Monday
when he heard a sound "almost like a small explosion" from elsewhere in the building, reported Thursday. Ciampi said he found examination room No. 2, which is
only about 10 feet from his office, and the hallway outside its door was littered with debris with the ceiling and walls and three chunks of stone on the floor. Cari
Corrigan, a planetary scientist at the Smithsonian Institution's Museum of Natural History, confirmed the stones comprised a meteorite about the size of a tennis ball.
She said meteorites similar to the one that hit Ciampi's office fall to Earth "fairly often." "We're bombarded by stuff like that all the time," she said.
AUSTRALIA: Firefighters are continuing to battle a large fire in Victoria's east, which threatens to break containment lines if weather conditions turn bad. The fire is
burning through thick forest around the Wingan River, about 20km south of Mallacoota. Up to 266 firefighters are tackling the blaze, which has burnt through 6314
hectares of bushland. The blaze was started by lightning earlier this week and has been fueled by an abundance of dry ground fuel. Department of Sustainability and
Environment spokesman Mark Woodman said helicopters were drawing water directly from the river in an effort to halt the growing fire.
USA: Florida - A severe weather system, which may have included two or three tornado touchdowns, caused damage across Northeast Florida and Southeast
Georgia Thursday afternoon. The storm's first damage occurred about 12:45 p.m. in St. George, in Charlton County, Ga., the National Weather Service reported.
USA: Arizona / Mississippi / California / Alabama - Severe weather with tornados have struck across several states.
MEXICO: Tijuana is on state of alert as the powerful storm hitting the area has caused widespread flooding and claimed the life of a girl. The National Defense
Secretariat activated a plan that calls for military personnel to help local authorities evacuate families from high-risk areas The cityâ€™s emergency agency,
ProtecciÃ³n Civil, estimated that at least 3,000 homes were in high-risk areas. The cityâ€™s family-protection agency said that as of noon Thursday, about 182
people had fled to shelters. Tijuana Mayor Jorge Ramos said the city was on alert and urged to stay home and follow the recommendations of emergency personnel.
Subject: Around the World Today: Thursday 21st January 2010
CANADA: BP Canada reported a crude oil leak to the north of its Plank Road plant in Sarnia on Wednesday. The alert was issued shortly before before 5 p.m. No
further information was immediately available.
BRAZIL: Brazilian officials say at least eight people in the city of Sao Paulo have been killed by mudslides after heavy overnight rains. The public safety office in Sao
Paulo state where South America's largest city is located says that at least one person is also missing. Among those killed were two sisters ages 8 and 14. A toddler
was killed in another area of the city. Floodwaters have also overtaken many of Sao Paulo's major highways, snarling traffic that is chaotic even in good conditions.
More than 90 people have been killed in mudslides in southeastern Brazil since Jan. 1, including 29 who died early on New Year's Day when a slide took out a resort
on Isla Grande island off the coast of Rio state.
USA: Texas - At least seven homes near Canton in Van Zandt County were destroyed Wednesday by severe storms that raked Northeast Texas, a Red Cross
spokeswoman said. A tornado may have caused the worst damage, so the National Weather Service office in Fort Worth sent assessment teams to the areas to
determine if funnel clouds had indeed pounced there. No serious injuries were reported from the storms, but they were powerful enough to topple an 18-wheeler,
snap power lines and tear up some roofs.
HAITI: Planners are planning to house 400,000 earthquake survivors in tented villages outside the capital, officials announce.
Subject: Around the World Today: Wednesday 20th January 2010
HAITI: A strong aftershock has rocked Haiti, sending screaming people running into the streets, eight days after another quake devastated the country. The extent of
the damage is not yet known. The magnitude 6.1 tremor struck west of Port-au-Prince at 0603 local time (1103 GMT).
EGYPT: A 20 year old woman began experiencing symptoms [of avian influenza (H5N1) virus infection] on 6 Jan 2010. She had been admitted to Beni Suef Chest
Hospital on 15 Nov 2009. Her family reported she had contact with sick and dead poultry. She was reported to be in a stable condition on 13 Jan 2010. The Ministry
of Health reported that this was the 91st case of highly pathogenic avian influenza [H5N1 virus infection] in Egypt.
ISREAL: Torrential rains swept through northern Israel Wednesday flooding homes, streets, bridges and railway lines, authorities said. Pressure from the fast-flowing
water blew off concrete sewer covers in Haifa, creating little geysers in the streets. The rains delayed train service between Haifa and Narahiya with only one
southbound rail line operational from the Hof Hacarmel Station. Two supporting walls collapsed on Haifa streets but no one was injured. Some homeowners reported
water as high as 15 inches inside their homes. On Mount Hermon, snow was expected to continue for several days.
USA: Staff at the Prairie Island nuclear power plant are looking for six tools containing radioactive material that have been reported missing. Xcel Energy says the
tools contain sealed radioactive materials, with significantly less radioactivity than what's found in residential smoke detectors. They were discovered to be missing
during an inventory taken in December.
Subject: Around the World Today: Tuesday 19th January 2010
USA: Utah - A moderate swarm of earthquakes is rattling Yellowstone National Park. The earthquake swarm started Sunday night and that more than 200 had been
counted by Monday morning. The swarm is centered about 10 miles northwest of Old Faithful. The largest of the quakes was magnitude 3.3 at 7:39 pm PDT
Monday night. There has been one report of an earthquake being felt in the park. Scientist pay close attention to seismic activity at Yellowstone, which sits on an
active super volcano.
INDONESIA: Pamekasan regency`s veterinary office here Tuesday has destroyed 270 bird flu-infected chickens to prevent the spread of this dangerous virus in East
TURKEY: A Moldova-flagged cargo vessel sank off the Black Sea coast of Turkey after breaking into two due to harsh winter weather, Turkish coast security
bureau said on Tuesday. All 21 crew members on board the ship were rescued by the coast security members at 9:00 a.m. local time (0700 GMT) Tuesday. The 145-
meter "Orcun C" coming from Ukraine anchored at the Guven Foreland in Kilyos, nearly 30 km north of Istanbul.
JORDAN: Torrential rain and thunderstorms across the Kingdom on Monday formed flash floods that trapped scores of people and caused several road accidents,
authorities said yesterday, while meteorologists forecast the rainy conditions to persist through the week. Heavy rain, which started in the southern region Sunday
evening and put authorities on a state of alert, caused flash floods in Aqaba, Maan and Tafileh.
UKRAINE: The death toll in the explosion that partially destroyed a hospital in eastern Ukraine on Monday has risen to five, the Ukrainian emergencies ministry said.
Hundreds were in the building in the city of Lugansk when an oxygen cylinder exploded in an intensive care unit on the fourth floor. Several stories caved in.
ALBANIA: In Albania, Prime Minister Sali Berisha on Saturday announced an emergency situation in the region of Shkodra because of floods that were caused by
torrential rains. He also ordered the evacuation of people from some parts of the area. The evacuated people will be accommodated in hotels and student dormitories
and will be provided with food, clothes and shoes.
Subject: Around the World Today: Monday 18th January 2010
No Information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Sunday 17th January 2010
SCOTLAND: Flooding led to a landslide beside a major route in Dumfries and Galloway and forced the closure of several other Scottish roads. The A76 was closed
at Kirkconnel and between Cumnock and New Cumnock due to the landslide, but both stretches are now open. The Whitesands area in Dumfries remains closed due
to the risk of the River Nith flooding.
MALAYSIA: Flood situation in Kota Marudu worsened as heavy rain that persisted since Thursday, forced an estimated 1,600 people to be evacuated and placed at
relief centres. Kota Marudu Member of Parliament Datuk Seri Dr Maximus Ongkili said the authorities, led by the district office which had set up a disaster relief
committee, placed flood victims at seven evacuation centres and eight shelter homes.
IRAN: Two earthquakes which struck in the same area of southwestern Iran overnight damaged about 150 houses, an official said on Sunday. The quakes of
magnitude 4.9 and 4.1 respectively occurred near the town of Andimeshk in Khuzestan province.
INDONESIA: A landslide has isolated seven villages in Kupang regency, East Nusa Tenggara, said a local official on Sunday. Kupang public works agency head Joao
Soares Mariano said the landslide cut off road in Nekamese district. "Seven villages have been isolated. There is no alternative road to the villages," he said. He added
he had dispatched a team to build a temporary road to the villages.
PHILIPPINES: A Philippine official says a 5-year-old girl was killed and 4,000 people were left homeless in a fire that razed a squatters' colony near the main port in
the capital. Senior Fire Officer Emmanuel Gaspar says 500 shanties were gutted by a fire that broke out late Saturday at Manila's Baseco Compound, a crowded slum
along the rim of Manila Bay.
Subject: Around the World Today: Saturday 16th January 2010
HAITI: A complete overview of affected population and damage to property, public services etc. are at this stage not available.The EU CP TEAM (MIC), safely
arrived in Port-au-Prince yesterday 14:35 (Brussels time). USAR teams and other international relief teams continue to arrive. 17 USAR teams are on-site and 6 more
teams are arriving. There is insufficient capacity to handle the incoming relief flights at Port-Au-Prince airport; lack of handling capacity, fuel, transport, coordination
and communications. According to the OSOCC SitRep1, there is no more need for additional USAR teams. There is still a general lack of sanitation facilities and
equipment, medicines, water, medical equipment and electricity. Sweden is coordinating a joint effort with International Humanitarian Partnership (IHP) to cover
accommodation and office needs for approximately 300 persons. According to preliminary planning these resources will be deployed through chartered cargo flights
starting on Saturday morning 16 January. Sweden has been awarded the requested co-financing for their relief flights to Haiti.
ALBANIA: Water level in the affected regions is decreasing. Depending on further development of the situation the response phase for the Albanian government will
be over within the next days. The Minister of Interior stated that no further international civil protection means are needed at the moment. The EU CP team left
KENYA: Floods in Kenya after heavy rains have killed 38 people and forced more than 40,000 from their homes. Flash floods in the coastal district of Malindi on
Thursday caused a river to change course and submerge 100 acres of maize crops. The northern region of Turkana, which has been suffering from drought, was
badly hit. 8 people had died and nearly 5,000 households were uprooted by floods.
CUBA: Twenty-six patients at a psychiatric hospital in Havana died as a result of cold weather this week, Cuban authorities confirmed Friday. The Public Health
Ministry said in a televised statement that the deaths were related to unusually low temperatures of less than 10 degrees Celsius. The patients - all of them elderly -
had suffered from age-related illnesses, and died of natural causes, but reports said negligence and lack of resources at the hospital had contributed to the deaths.
USA: Texas - pair of duck hunters has triggered a security alert at a nuclear weapons assembly plant in Amarillo, Texas. Officials put the plant into lockdown after
getting reports of individuals in camouflage gear stalking across the road from the factory. They turned out to be two plant employees who had decided to spend their
day off hunting fowl.
Subject: Around the World Today: Friday 15th January 2010
AUSTRALIA: Australasia, the company behind an August oil spill considered one of Australia's worst environmental disasters, has plugged and secured the leaking
well at its offshore Montara rig.
AUSTRALIA: More than 100 people have been evacuated from a western Sydney factory and neighbouring buildings after a chemical spill, firefighters say. Six
people at the Jalco factory in Smithfield inhaled the unidentified chemical fumes following the spill at 2.15pm (AEDT) Friday, a NSW Fire Brigades spokesman said.
They were treated at the scene, while 104 other people evacuated from the factory and adjacent buildings were assessed and given the all-clear.
GERMANY: A fatal case of anthrax occurred in an injecting drug user in Germany, in December 2009. A potential link to similar cases in Scotland in the same time
period is currently under investigation. The Robert Koch Institute, in collaboration with the Friedrich Loeffler Institute in Jena, the Federal Research Institute for
Animal Health, and the respective local and regional health authorities in the Aachen district, North-Rhine-Westphalia, Germany, are currently investigating a fatal case
of anthrax in a 42 year-old male injecting drug user.
Subject: Around the World Today: Thursday 14th January 2010
FRANCE: The swine flu epidemic in mainland France that has killed hundreds has ended, a monitoring group of doctors said on Wednesday. "It's the end of the
epidemic," Thierry Blanchon, one of the doctors of the Sentinelles flu monitoring network, told AFP. The number of cases of the fever reported to doctors has "fallen
below the epidemic level for the past two weeks".
USA: North Carolina - Nuclear safety regulators said today that Progress Energy's Shearon Harris nuclear plant in Wake County leaked about 1,000 gallons of water
contaminated with tritium, a low-level source of radiation. The leak, which affected about 100 cubic feet of soil, did not affect public safety, according to the U.S.
Nuclear Regulatory Commission. The contaminated soil will be dried onsite to evaporate the tritium.
INDONESIA: Heavy rains in different parts of East Java on Wednesday night have flooded areas around major rivers in the province, forcing hundreds to evacuate as
the areas were paralyzed. In Pasuruan Regency where flash floods hit five days ago, residents were again forced to leave their homes. About four villages in Bangil
Subdistrict were inundated up to the knee level of adults on Thursday morning after rain fell incessantly for about four hours in the basin of River Kedung Larangan.
Secretary of the Indonesia Red Cross branch in Pasuruan Regency Sutrisno said it has set up a communal kitchen to prepare food for the refugees and deployed
volunteers to count the number of people affected and losses to determine the amount of aid needed. In the flash flood five days ago around 6,000 homes were
inundated, 1,000 hectares of farmland were drowned, four residents were killed and one missing with total loss estimated at Rp3 billion.
Subject: Around the World Today: Wednesday 13th January 2010
HAITI: Catastrophic earthquake. Thousands of people are feared dead following a huge quake which has devastated the country's capital. UN chief Ban Ki-moon said
the head of the UN mission in Haiti and his deputy were among more than 100 staff missing. The 7.0-magnitude quake, Haiti's worst in two centuries, struck south
of Port-au-Prince, on Tuesday. The Red Cross says up to three million people are affected. The capital's Catholic archbishop is reported killed. Many counteries and
global organisations are deploying resources.
ENGLAND: Natural disaster was narrowly avoided during the recent artic conditions after a lorry crashed on M20, spilling more than 600 litres of diesel into local
waterways. Environment Agency officers were dispatched to the scene near Maidstone, after ice and snow led to deteriorating driving conditions and caused a multi-
vehicle accident, acting swiftly to reduce the harmful effects of the oil. A spillage of more than 600 litres of diesel made its way through the motorway drainage
system, down the Lilk Stream and into the top of Majors Lakes fishery at Bearsted. Oil booms were successfully deployed to contain the spill and minimise the
damage done. HAZMAT
ALBANIA: Surrounded by raging waters, the villagers of Obot in northern Albania are determined to stay put to secure their modest homes flooded after heavy rains
pelted this rural region for days.
EUROPE: Switzerland's main publicly-owned salt works said Tuesday that it had turned down new orders from the snowbound Netherlands and Germany in order to
cater for booming domestic needs in the cold snap. Many countries are running low on salt to clear roads in the unusually widespread and lengthy wave of icy
weather that has cloaked much of Europe with snow over the past fortnight. The cold snap that has gripped Europe for two weeks has caused severe disruptions to
natural gas exports from the world's second-biggest gas exporter Norway, Norwegian pipeline operator Gassco said Monday.
FRANCE: The French capital braced for a snow and sleet storm Wednesday, banning lorries from motorways and warning of massive flight cancellations as icy
conditions made for treacherous travel around northern Europe. French road authorities issued a ban against heavy commercial road traffic starting at midnight until
noon on Wednesday on motorways in eight departments around Paris due to a new winter storm brewing. Conditions were expected to be especially hazardous
because of icy sleet. Some 58 departments in northern and central France have been placed under an orange alert by Meteo France.
ARGENTINA: A mud and water avalanche flooded the thermal resort located in Jardin de Reyes, a few meters from the Hotel by the same name. It covered several
cars and there are over 50 people injured. The phenomenon occurred at around 14 hrs, 35 kilometers north of the capital. Experts say it was caused by the rising of
ECUADOR: The Tungurahua volcano in central Ecuador erupted on Tuesday following frequent emissions recently, spewing ashes and lava. There are no reports of
casualties. The volcano, located about 180 km south of the capital Quito, underwent three emissions early Tuesday after a massive eruption on Monday, with ash
columns reaching as high as 3,000 meters, said the country's Institute of Geophysics in a report.
Subject: Around the World Today: Tuesday 12th January 2010
HAITI: On 1/12/2010 9:53:14 PM UTC (about 17:03h local time) an earthquake of magnitude 6.5 occurred in the very highly populated region of Ouest in Haiti. The
earthquake happened 14km from Port-au-Prince. The nearest populated places are: Aboni (16km), Henry (9km), Bellevue (7km). The closest civilian airport is Mais
Based on an automated impact model, this earthquake, which occurred in a region with medium vulnerability to natural disasters, has potentially a high humanitarian
USA: North Carolina - Moorhead port in the state of North Carolina has been closed after containers carrying explosive material were found punctured in Morehead
City. People have been told to leave the area. The chemical involved, known as PETN, is a powerful explosive. The mayor said a forklift operator had accidentally
punctured at least one container.
IRELAND: Householders and business people in Cork city and county were today counting the cost as torrential rain totalling more than 30 mm combined with
melting snows to create serious localised flooding in many areas. Business people in the centre of Blackpool on Cork's north side were hit by a flash flood at
lunchtime. In Cork county, householders and business people in Mallow and Fermoy were on flood alert tonight after heavy rain and melting snow on high ground in
the Boggeragh and Nagle mountains led to a huge rise in water levels in the Blackwater.
JAPAN: An annual evacuation drill involving fire, police and military personnel was held Tuesday in Sakurajima, Kagoshima Prefecture, which has seen a recent rise
in volcanic activity. The volcano had a record 548 minor eruptions last year, putting residents on high alert. The drill, a 40-year tradition, drew more than 5,000
IRELAND: The Irish Coast Guard are currently investigating the loss of seven containers from a vessel off the southern coast, one of which is believed to contain
hazardous material. The incident occurred earlier this afternoon, some 15 miles south east of Mine Head (Waterford), 20 miles east of Youghal and 16 miles south of
Tramore. "One of the containers is believed to contain hazardous material (Sodium Bromate)," a Coast Guard statement said.
AUSTRALIA: Fire authorities are warning an out-of-control bushfire in Perth's southern suburbs is threatening property. The fire broke out in bushland in Success
about 4:00pm (AWST) today. Several crews are working to contain the blaze and helitacs have begun dumping water on the flames.
ISLE OF MAN: Twelve homes were evacuated in Port St Mary last night following a landslide in the Happy Valley area. The main road into and out of the village was
closed from its junction with Victoria Road to its junction with the Bay View Hotel and, as a precaution, 12 properties were evacuated, the occupants initially taken to
Port St Mary town hall. In addition to the Emergency Services staff, personnel from the Department of Transport and the Civil Defence (under the guidance of the
Emergency Planning Officer) attended to inspect and assess the land and to co-ordinate the evacuation and safe refuge of property occupants disturbed.
Subject: Around the World Today: Monday 11th January 2010
No information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Sunday 10th January 2010
AUSTRALIA: Three hundred people in a gaming room were saved by poker machines after a ceiling collapse in Sydney's west early today. Firefighter Mark Graham
said the Canley Vale club was closed and about 1000 people evacuated into the car park after the 1am collapse. The 30m by 10m suspended ceiling landed on the
poker machines after falling a short distance, sheltering patrons from any injury.
USA: California - An earthquake of magnitude 3.8 struck the Silicon Valley area in the United States on Friday, a day after another tremor jolted the same region.
Preliminary data from the U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) showed that the latest quake occurred at 11:48 a.m.
INDIA: One person has been killed and 12 hurt in a fire at an athletes' village being built for the 2010 Commonwealth Games in Delhi, Indian media reports say. The
fire reportedly broke out in the residential quarters of on-site construction workers. It comes two weeks after a rugby stadium under construction caught fire. The
authorities are under pressure to finish construction work in major sports venues, amid criticism that some work has fallen behind schedule.
RUSSIA: A reactor block at a nuclear power plant in southern Russia is being shut down due to a steam generator failure, Interfax news agency reported on Sunday
citing local emergency services. The agency said radiation levels in the area around Volgodon nuclear plant remained normal. It said the plant's safety system was
triggered by a leak in the steam generator pipes, which required a stoppage of the whole reactor block.
CHINA: At least two people were killed and six others sickened after hydrogen sulfide overflow in a factory in southwest China's Sichuan Province Sunday, the local
government said. The accident took place in Nikeguorun New Materials Co. Ltd. In Pengshan County in the morning as workers added excessive amount of sulfuric
acid during an experiment, which led to the overflow of the toxic hydrogen sulfide, the publicity office of the county government said, based on an initial investigation.
FRANCE: A cold snap, coupled with heavy snowfalls, has interrupted traffic flows on roads, rails and in air while forcing up power consumption to a record high in
France. Meteo-France, the French national meteorological service, has decided to maintain till Sunday in most of the country's 26 administrative regions its orange
alert against the ongoing cold spell.
AUSTRALIA: WA - A small Wheatbelt town was yesterday struck by a storm which damaged ten properties and which police described as a "mini tornado". A police
spokesman said that the storm struck Trayning about 5pm yesterday and had damaged shops, homes and power poles. Police, FESA, Western Power and residents
had worked throughout the night to clear debris and restore power to the town. The power had finally been restored this afternoon and had been roads re-opened. No
one was injured in the storm.
Subject: Around the World Today: Saturday 9th January 2010
GERMANY: Flights are cancelled and people warned to stock up on essential supplies as heavy snow continues in Germany.
CANADA: A meteor crashing through the Earth's atmosphere could be responsible for sightings of a fireball over Montreal Thursday night, astronomers said.
Montrealer Humberto Dramasino witnessed the sight as he was driving home in the city's St-Laurent district around (07.01.2010) 7:30 p.m
IRELAND: St. Vincent's University Hospital today announced it has imposed visitor restrictions due to an outbreak of the so-called winter vomiting virus. The
Norovirus is currently affecting 34 patients through 10 wards and 27 staff members at the hospital. St Vincent's has appealed the people to attend the Emergency
Department only if necessary, to not visit patients unless it is essential, to not enter affected wards and to not bring children to the hospital.
CANADA: The community of Kindersley in Saskatchewan, close to the Alberta border, is in a state of emergency following a fire at the local arena. More than 60 fire
crews worked to control the blaze which destroyed parts of a local arena. Several cars and homes were also damaged. Some residents had to be evacuated because
of smothering patches and possible ambers, say police.
Subject: Around the World Today: Friday 8th January 2010
USA: Illinois - A severe winter storm, which is expected to drop up to 8-12 inches of snow here, has led to cancellations of over 500 flight from the city. The
National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning for northern Illinois and northeast Indiana that would remain in effect until this noon. Snow showers and
8-12 inches of snow accumulation is expected by this morning, with the greatest amount occurring from Chicago into the northern suburbs, the weather service said,
adding snow showers would finally taper off to flurries by this afternoon.
CHINA: Some provinces in east and central China have resorted to power rationing amid increased demand due to record cold temperatures. Coal transport has been
hampered by heavy snow. Beijing recorded its coldest day in 29 years Tuesday, with temperatures dropping to 3.2 degrees Fahrenheit, and the heaviest snowfall in 60
years over the weekend.
JAPAN: Ten people were injured in an explosion at a chemical plant explosion here on Thursday evening, police said. The explosion is believed to have originated at
the center of Japan Carlit Co.'s Yokohama plant in Yokohama's Kanazawa Ward at around 5:50 p.m. A subsequent fire razed eight buildings before it was brought
under control around 2 1/2 hours later. Eight employees and two passers-by were left with mild injuries. This is the second explosion accident at the plant, following
one that left one employee dead and another injured in April 2008.
CHINA: Two people were killed in an explosion at a chemical plant in China's northwest province of Gansu belonging to energy giant CNPC on Thursday, the state-
run Xinhua news agency reported. The incident occurred at a plant operated by the Lanzhou Chemical Company, which is owned by China National Petroleum
SPAIN: According to the Spanish Met Office (AEMET) 25 provinces across the country remain on amber alert (high risk) because of the threat of snow, extremely
low temperatures and strong winds. The affected provinces are: Teruel, Zaragoza, Cantabria, Albacete, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Toledo, Burgos, Lean, Palencia,
Barcelona, Gerona, Larida, Tarragona, Navarra, Alicante, Castellan, Valencia, Mallorca, Menorca, Alava, Guipazcoa, Vizcaya, Asturias and Murcia. AEMET has
issued a yellow alert (risk) in Huesca, Guadalajara, Avila, Salamanca, Segovia, Soria, Zamora, Madrid, La Coruaa, Lugo, Ibiza, Formentera, La Rioja and Melilla, also
because of snow, low temperatures and high winds. Winds of up to 100 kilometres per hour are expected in a number of places, including Teruel, Zaragoza and
Mallorca. There is a very high chance of snow in the provinces of Teruel, Cantabria, Albacete, Ciudad Real, Cuenca, Toledo, Burgos, Barcelona, Gerona, LÃ©rida,
Tarragona, Alicante, Castellan, Valencia, Alava, Guipazcoa, Vizcaya, Asturias and Murcia. Burgos, Lean and Palencia will see temperatures drop dramatically, as low
as minus 12 in some places.
CHINA: Over 150 workers at an electrical factory in southern China have tested positive for suspected mercury poisoning, state press said Thursday, in the latest
work-safety scandal to hit the nation. Urine samples from 590 workers at the Foshan Electrical and Lighting Co. in Guangdong province were tested late last month
after a smaller group was diagnosed with mercury poisoning, Xinhua news agency said.
PERU: Health Authorities in Amazonas reported today [6 Jan 2010] that 7 children have died in the district of Nieva, presumably of a bat-related rabies outbreak. The
disease has been found in several specimens of bats that live in the area, and all the victims showed the typical symptoms of rabies. However, the doctors have not
been able to perform any autopsy to confirm the cause of these deaths due to cultural issues, since the natives consider that would be an insult.
SOUTH KOREA: South Korea has reported its first outbreak of foot-and-mouth disease in eight years. The virus was confirmed in six cows at a dairy farm in
Puchon, 45 kilometres north of Seoul, the Ministry of Agriculture said on Thursday.
Subject: Around the World Today: Thursday 7th January 2010
ENGLAND: Military personnel have been coming to the assistance of civilian authorities and members of the British public who have been affected by the
severe weather conditions across the country today, Wednesday 6 January 2010. In southern England, where very large snowfalls have particularly affected
the Home Counties, military units have been undertaking numerous tasks to assist people coping with the weather. During the night, near Petersfield in
Hampshire, 47 Regiment Royal Artillery deployed a Land Rover and a four-tonne truck from their base in Thorney Island at the request of Hampshire
Constabulary who have been dealing with 600 stranded vehicles on the A3.
ENGLAND: About 4,000 homes in southern England were without power on Thursday as snow and ice caused major disruption to electricity supplies. The
worst affected area was around Petersfield in Hampshire, but problems were being experienced across the county as well as Surrey, Oxfordshire and
Berkshire. A spokesman for Southern Electric said the number of properties affected had improved from the 20,000 experiencing power cuts on
SURINAM: For the second time within days, residential areas in Suriname's capital Paramaribo were hit on Monday by tornado-like winds, causing severe
damage to homes, cars and power lines, while trees were uprooted.
TANZANIA: Part of Tanzania's railway network in the center of the country was flooded following extensive torrential rains in several parts of the eastern
African nation. Reports of weather-related problems came in from various parts of eastern Africa, where torrential rains hammered down, washing away
crops, flooding roads and bridges, and triggering landslides in the process.
Subject: Around the World Today: Wednesday 6th January 2010
No information posted
Subject: Around the World Today: Tuesday 5th January 2010
KENYA: Thousands of Kenyans have been displaced by devastating floods in recent days, prompting the government to ask for international help. The rains
have hit hard across the country - even in areas suffering from a prolonged drought. The Kenya Red Cross said 30,000 people were in dire need of food aid.
RUSSIA / SPACE: Russian scientists will soon meet in secret to work on a plan for saving Earth from a possible catastrophic collision with a giant asteroid
in 26 years, the head of Russia's space agency said Wednesday. "We will soon hold a closed meeting of our collegium, the science-technical council to look
at what can be done" to prevent the asteroid Apophis from slamming into the planet in 2036, Anatoly Perminov told Voice of Russia radio. http://www.
GERMANY: Millions of Germans have faced problems using credit and debit cards due to a new year software bug. According to one of Germany's
biggest banking associations, the problems are linked to issues reading the new date. The problem has been described as a "late Millenium bug" and is
affecting 20 million debit cards and 3.5 million credit cards.
INDIA: At least 10 people have died in a landslide triggered by snowstorms in Pakistan's northern region of Gilgit. Rescue workers believe that more than a
dozen people are buried in the rubble after the landslide in the Hunza area on Monday afternoon. The landslide also wiped out Atabad, a small village of
more than 25 houses.
USA: Ice on the Delaware River has caused the shutdown of the Unit 2 reactor at the Salem nuclear-power plant. It also has caused the Unit 1 reactor to
reduce its power output to 80 percent. Both plants draw river water for nonradioactive cooling purposes, and ice was threatening to jam or block large
screens that prevent river debris from entering the system. Neil Sheehan, spokesman for the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, said yesterday that the
shutdown occurred about 8 a.m. Sunday. It was unclear when the units would be restarted or returned to full power. Plant officials said strong northwest
winds and a low tide contributed to the unusual ice buildup.
ICELAND: Iceland's famous Hekla volcano could erupt soon with very little warning. University of Iceland geophysicist Freysteinn Sigmundsson says that
the pressure in the lava chamber below the volcano is similar now to immediately before the last Hekla eruption.
CHINA: A gas pipeline leak on Monday has killed seven workers in north China's Hebei Province, said local authorities Tuesday. A total of 16 workers
were poisoned while assembling a furnace at 11:45 a.m. Monday in Hebei Puyang Iron and Steel Co., Ltd., said Li Shuming, general secretary of Wu'an
municipal government, Hebei. Seven were confirmed dead and the other nine were in stable condition, Li said.
Subject: Around the World Today: Monday 4th January 2010
SOLOMON ISLANDS: Two strong earthquakes hit near the Solomon Islands in the South Pacific on Monday, triggering a small local tsunami with some
reports of damage, police said. The magnitude 7.2 and 6.5 quakes struck close together around 21h48 GMT and occurred around 90km south-southeast of
the small island of Gizo, the US Geological Survey and Pacific Tsunami Warning Centres said.
NORTHEAST ASIA: Record snow disrupted air and road travel in northeast Asia on Monday, grounding dozens of planes in China and South Korea and
forcing schools to close in Beijing, with more freezing weather on the way. One person was killed and at least two others were missing in the mountains of
central Japan after snow fell across the region.
CZECH REPUBLIC: One person died and three have been seriously injured due to an explosion in a boiler house of the Czech factory Avon Automotive in
Rudnik early in the morning, Martina Zahourkova, spokeswoman for the regional firefighters. Several other people suffered light injuries. The pressure wave
damaged a truck outside the boiler house. The truck then killed a person standing next to it. The truck driver was seriously injured. Other people were
injured after the roof of the boiler house collapsed. Eight teams of rescuers with a helicopter arrived on the spot. Avon Automotive produces car parts. It is
owned by British Avon Rubber.
ALBANIA: In Albania, Prime Minister Sali Berisha on Saturday announced an emergency situation in the region of Shkodra because of floods that were
caused by torrential rains. He also ordered the evacuation of people from some parts of the area. The evacuated people will be accommodated in hotels and
student dormitories and will be provided with food, clothes and shoes.
INDIA: At least eight people fell ill following a gas leak at a state-owned Rourkela Steel Plant in the eastern Indian state of Orissa Sunday, a senior police
official said. "Eight workers have been admitted to hospital after they fell ill following the gas leak in one of the blast furnaces. Four of them are said to be in
serious condition," the official said.
CHINA: Pollution from a broken oil pipeline in northern China has now reached one of the country's major water sources - the Yellow River, state media
say. Hundreds of workers had battled to contain the oil upstream, but officials discovered traces in the river itself. The traces were found about 200km (124
miles) upstream from Zhengzhou.
INDIA: Dozens of people die in a cold wave sweeping through northern India, the country's state broadcaster Doordarshan says.
Subject: Around the World Today: Sunday 3rd January 2010
TAJIKISTAN: Some 20,000 people were left homeless by an earthquake which hit Tajikistan's mountainous Gorno-Badakhshan province, a local
administration spokesman has said. The earthquake measuring 5.1 on the Richter scale took place on Saturday and affected two locations in the province's
Vanchsky district, in Tajikistan's Pamir Mountains, the spokesman said. "Several dozens houses inhabited by some 20,000 people have been destroyed
completely or partly," he said. Rock falls and mudslides caused by the quake blocked a road linking the Vanchsky district with the province's administrative
center of Khorog, he added.
COLOMBIA: The Galeras volcano in southern Colombia erupted on Saturday, shooting rock and ash and prompting authorities to order the evacuation of
about 8,000 people.
CHINA: Six people were killed Sunday after an overpass under construction collapsed in southwest China's Yunnan Province, local officials said. The
accident also left eight people seriously injured and 26 others with light injures. It happened at 2:20 p.m., when an overpass under construction collapsed in
an uncompleted airport in Kunming, the provincial capital, said a spokesman with the municipal government.
CANADA: A state of emergency has been declared in Port Elgin, N.B., after a huge storm surge forced dozens of people from their flooded homes. A
massive winter storm that swept through on Saturday dumped up to 30 centimetres of snow in the area but it was the strong winds that caused most of the
problems. Fire Chief Steve Alward says his crews were up all night helping evacuate people who were cut off by water levels that rose several metres above
normal, the result of strong winds and high tides.
AZERBAIJAN: A howling winter storm barreled through the southern and southeastern Azerbaijan, hitting the residential settlements with fierce winds. The
far-reaching storm system stretched from Lerik to Yardimli, snapping electric power and telephone poles, and leaving some parts of southeastern regions of
Lenkeran, Masalli and Astara without electricity. Fierce wind triggered a fire in Birkandul forest 40km off Lerik. Locals and fire-fighters are struggling to put
out the rapidly growing fire fed by wind speeds over 45 m/s. The emergency forces of the both regions have been mobilized to deal with the damage and
aftermath of storm.
ENGLAND: Twelve people were injured, two of them seriously, when a building collapsed in a suspected gas blast in Shrewsbury town centre. The building
on Bridge Street, thought to contain an empty shop and some flats, was cordoned off by police.
GHANA: Fire has destroyed parts of one of Africa's biggest markets, at Ghana's second city of Kumasi. The fire is reported to have lasted for several hours.
CHINA: Heavy snow has blanketed the Chinese capital Beijing, closing major roads and stranding air travellers. Several centimetres of snow covered the
city centre early on Sunday and forecasters warned of temperatures down to -14C (6.8F) in the next few days.
TURKEY: Two passenger trains have collided in north-west Turkey, killing a train driver and injuring seven other people. The accident occurred when one
train failed to stop at a signal near the town of Bilecik and rammed into the back of the other, stationary, train.
Subject: Around the World Today: Saturday 2nd January 2010
RUSSIA: A major snowstorm has battered Russia's Pacific island of Sakhalin since New Year's Eve, stranding almost 60 cars on the main highway, an
emergencies official said on Saturday. Accommodation had been provided at a local school and a small barbecue joint was laying on food. The storm system
struck the island on Thursday, with the heaviest snowfall occurring on Friday. More than 30 specialist vehicles were being used to clear the snow, but were
only able to advance about 5 kilometers (3 miles) an hour. The snow also blocked a rail line, with an avalanche engulfing a diesel locomotive and snowplow.
Two railroad workers were missing, with rescuers forced to work carefully due to the threat of further avalanches. More than 300 rail workers, along with as
many as 200 soldiers, were working to clear the line and restore rail service.
FRANCE: Rescue teams in the south of France have wrapped up their mission a day after giant waves swept six people off the French Riviera on New
Year's Day. At least three people were killed by the tidal sweeps. Rescue teams called off their search Saturday, following deadly giant waves that washed
the shores of the French Riviera on New Year's Day, killing at least three people. Coastal areas of Corsica also suffered extensive damage during the stormy
weather. While the weather had significantly calmed on Saturday, the seas were rough, with waves rising to between 1.5 and 2 metres.
CHINA: A large amount of diesel oil that leaked from a key pipeline of China National Petroleum Corporation (CNPC) polluted the Wei River in Weinan,
north China's Shaanxi province, China News Agency reported Saturday. The accident happened on the pipeline that connects Lanzhou in northwest China's
Gansu province to Zhengzhou in central China's Henan province on December 30, 20009. The leaked oil first entered into Chishui River, a tributary of Wei
River. A section of river spanning 33 kilometers reported pollution, Shaanxi TV said.
CONGO: A government official says a volcano has erupted in eastern Congo, sending lava toward a national park. Feller Lutahichirwa said Saturday that
the Nyamulagira volcano had erupted at dawn. While the area where the lava was headed is sparsely populated, wildlife officials say it is home to about 40
endangered chimpanzees. Lutahichirwa says government observers are monitoring the situation with help from U.N. helicopters.
Subject: Around the World Today: Friday 1st January 2010
CHINA: A firecrackers explosion killed eight people and injured another eight in northwest China's Shaanxi Province Friday, local authorities said. The
accident took place at about 3:20 p.m. in the Yilong Village of Sanhe Township, in Pucheng County, the Shaanxi provincial government said in a statement.
Local work safety, police and health authorities have dispatched emergency staff to the village, the statement said. No further details were provided.
FRANCE: About 65 people suffered from carbon monoxide intoxication on New Year's Day in Seine-Saint-Denis department to the northeast of Paris,
police said Friday. The city prefect of Pantin, the site of the incident, told local media that the intoxication occurred around 2:00 a.m. when over 200 people
were enjoying New Year feast in a dining hall.
BRAZIL: At least 15 people have been killed and 10 injured by a mudslide in a Brazilian island resort, say officials. The mud destroyed three houses and an
upmarket lodge on Ilha Grande, Angra dos Reis, near Rio de Janeiro. More than 40 people have now died in a series of landslides in and around Rio in the
past two days.