News Paris braces for record heat as Europe scorched again
„It’s likely that these three countries will see temperatures at or above 40C for the first time,” Francois Jobard, a forecaster from the French Meteo France weather office, told AFP.
The new blast of hot air comes less than a month after a heatwave scorched Europe at the end of June, forcing new attention on the issue of climate change.
„The heatwave that is too much,” declared the headline in Le Parisien newspaper, highlighting that „Act II” of this summer’s severe weather would further hurt production of crops from potatoes to grapes.
– ‘Historically hot’ –
Jobard from Meteo France said that Thursday was shaping up to be „a potentially historically hot day”.
„We are forecasting 41 or 42 degrees in Paris on Thursday and there is the strong chance of beating the record,” he added.
The highest ever temperature recorded in Paris was 40.4 degrees Celsius (104.7 degrees Fahrenheit) in 1947. Since records began in 1873, this was the only time a plus-40 temperature was recorded in the French capital, he said.With pollution climbing, only vehicles with a special clean air certificate will be allowed into central Paris on Tuesday, the local authorities said.Britain will also see high temperatures, but will still be significantly cooler than countries on the continent.Germany was already experiencing several forest fires and drying river beds while farmers fear another bad crop after last year’s low yield which was also caused by an unusually hot summer.The French government has warned that wine production will be down by between six to 13 percent over 2018, notably because of the ongoing heatwave.French Agriculture Minister Didier Guillaume has said that the government will ask the EU to bring forward the payment some one billion euros in aid to farmers to help them through the dry spell.He said farmers in around three dozen departments (regions) in France are being allowed to cut fallow fields as there was no food left to feed animals in the regular pastures.Huge wildfires that have ravaged the mountainous Castelo Branco region of central Portugal and left dozens injured have been „90 percent” controlled, firefighters said Monday, but warned that strong winds could cause the flames to spread.- ‘Prophetess in shorts’ -The new heatwave in northern Europe came as the United States also sweltered in extreme hot temperatures.The New York City Triathlon, which had been scheduled for Sunday, was cancelled for the first time since its founding in 2001.Scientists are increasingly confident that man-made climate change is driving up the length and intensity of heatwaves.The three-day temperature peak from June 26-28 in France was four degrees Celsius (7.2 Farenheit) hotter than an equally rare June heatwave would have been in 1900, the World Weather Attribution (WWA) team said this month.
One study by the Swiss Federal Institute of Technology also said the deadly, weeks-long heatwave across northern Europe in 2018 would have been statistically impossible without climate change.
France saw its highest ever temperature on June 28 — 46.0 degrees Celsius (114.8 degrees Fahrenheit) in Verargues in the Herault department of southern France.
Swedish teenage climate activist Greta Thunberg, who highlighted the problem of global warming through school strikes, is due to visit the French parliament on Tuesday.
Some right-wing MPs have said her visit is needless, with Julien Aubert of the Republicans describing her as a „prophetess in shorts, a Nobel Prize for Fear” in comments denounced by green activists.
A tropical depression has formed in the Bahamas, the National Hurricane Center announced Monday afternoon.
The depression is expected to remain weak, with its primary impact being about 1-3 inches of rain across eastern Florida on Tuesday.
Most of the system’s strongest winds should remain offshore.
„On its current forecast track, the center of the depression should remain just offshore of the east coast of Florida over the next day or so,” the hurricane center said.
However, vacationers aboard cruise ships may not enjoy the ride.
„Choppy seas and downpours associated with the tropical system can create less-than-ideal sailing conditions for those on cruise ships across the southwestern Atlantic,” AccuWeather meteorologist Brett Anderson said.
As of 5 p.m. EDT, the center of the depression was about 120 miles southeast of West Palm Beach, Florida, and was moving to the northwest at 13 mph.
If the depression’s winds reach 39 mph, which is not forecast, it would become Tropical Storm Chantal.
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Tropical depression forms in the Bahamas off South Florida
Tornadoes have always fascinated and terrified; they’re one of mother nature’s most incredible phenomena—and incredibly destructive occurrences to boot. If you ever wondered how they formed, we’ve got you covered.
Tornado vs. Twister
„Tornado” and „twister” are used interchangeably because they’re really the same thing: a rotating column of air that spins at high speeds. The width of a tornado can range from a couple of feet to several hundred feet across and they can last between a few seconds to a half hour although the tend to last an average of ten minutes or less.
How Tornadoes Form
Tornadoes are usually born from thunderstorms. High intensity tornadoes form from supercell thunderstorms, a storm that has a „deep rotating mesocyclone.” Supercell thunderstorms are usually when you’ll hear a tornado warning. A regular thunderstorm will hit before a supercell and for this to occur, a specific set of ‘ingredients’ need to come together.
The beginning of a thunderstorm looks like this: humid air, which rises, collides with cold air in the atmosphere above it. This creates wind shears, rolling columns of wind that spin above the space where the hot and cold air meet. The warmer air creates an updraft that takes one of the horizontal wind shears and moves it into a vertical position.
The peak of the updraft has two spinning columns on either side of it—the larger of the two columns overtakes the smaller one and becomes the thunderstorm. From here, the storm is able to expand due to the warm air being sucked into the spinning column.
When winds increase in speed and strength and create an updraft, a regular storm becomes a supercell. While the supercell churns in the sky, the chances of it becoming a tornado are slim—only 30 percent of these storms produce a tornado per National Geographic.
There are some things we still don’t understand about tornadoes. For one, scientists still aren’t completely sure why only some storms birth tornadoes. Second, we’re still unsure on specific details about how they die.
„Eventually, the air gets too cold and it chokes off the inflow of new air into the storm,” Harold Brooks, a National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) research meteorologist, told NatGeo.
For now, that’s about all we know about the disassembly of a tornado.
If you’re home, the first thing you should do is get away from windows and move to the lowest level floor.
Find a sturdy piece of furniture to sit under, ideally as close to the center of the room as possible, and cover your head with your arms. If you live in a mobile home, seek refuge somewhere else immediately.
If you’re outside during a tornado, try to get inside a home or building (not a mobile home). If you can’t get inside, get into a low area or place yourself against the building in a low position and be on the alert for flood waters.
If you’re at school or work or in any kind of public building, stay away from windows and open areas such as auditoriums and hallways. Find a sturdy table or piece of furniture to get beneath and protect your head.
If you’re in a car, the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) suggests you DO NOT try to drive faster than the tornado because they can change direction quickly and without notice. Instead, get out of the car and try to find shelter inside a building. If there are no buildings nearby, try to find a low area where you can wait out the tornado.
It also helps to have a predesignated meeting place where you can find friends and family after the storm has passed. You can also look to Red Cross for more tips on tornado safety and preparedness.
BOSTON (AP) — The East Coast on Sunday sweated through another day of extreme heat and humidity as organizers in Boston canceled a benefit run, Delaware Civil War re-enactors got the day off and the New York Police Department implored residents to take it easy.
„Sunday has been canceled,” the NYPD jokingly tweeted . „Stay indoors, nothing to see here. Really, we got this.”
The central part of the country, meanwhile, enjoyed some relief as a cold front moved steadily southward and eastward across the country, bringing down the temperatures. But the cooler weather settling in Monday and Tuesday is also bringing severe storms packed with powerful winds and heavy rains that have already caused damage in the Midwest. The National Weather Service warns flash flooding might be possible in some areas.
From the Carolinas to Maine, daytime highs reached the upper 90s Sunday. Coupled with high humidity, temperatures felt as hot as 110 degrees Fahrenheit (43 degrees Celsius) in places.
„There’s no point being out,” Washington, D.C., bus driver Ramieka Darby remarked while taking a quick break amid temperatures of nearly 100 degrees (37.8 Celsius).
Nearby, Jack Ogten was among a steady stream of tourists milling around outside the White House. Undeterred by the stifling heat, the resident of the Netherlands joked he’d lost about 22 pounds (10 kilograms) from sweating after just one day of sightseeing.
In New York City, where all eyes were on the power grid even before the hot weather following a Manhattan blackout last weekend, electricity company Con Ed reported roughly 50,000 customers were without power as of 10 p.m. Sunday because of scattered outages, the vast majority in the boroughs of Brooklyn and Queens.
Con Ed said it reduced voltage by 8% in those areas to maintain service as repairs are made and asked those customers to turn off non-essential appliances to conserve power.
New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio tweeted that the „accumulated heat and strain from the past few days has built up in the electrical equipment.” He said Con Ed will start bringing power back to customers 500 at a time starting at about midnight.
The city also directed office buildings to set thermostats no lower than 78 degrees (26 degrees Celsius) through Sunday to reduce strain on its electrical grid. A day earlier, a commemoration of the 1969 moon landing planned for Times Square and an outdoor festival featuring soccer star Megan Rapinoe and musician John Legend were nixed due to the heat.
In Boston, Sunday’s heat prompted cancellation of the annual Jimmy Fund 5K cancer benefit race as well as a popular Sunday market in the city’s South End. City officials also once again opened up city pools free to residents as the temperature topped 90 degrees (32 degrees Celsius) for the third consecutive day.
And police in one Boston suburb posted a tongue-in-cheek request on their Facebook page. „Due to the extreme heat, we are asking anyone thinking of doing criminal activity to hold off until Monday,” Braintree police wrote Friday. „Conducting criminal activity, in this extreme heat is next level henchmen status, and also very dangerous.”
In Pennsylvania, nine firefighters were treated for heat exhaustion and six transported to a hospital for treatment while fighting a house fire in sweltering conditions Saturday. Several hundred people were also evacuated from a retirement community Saturday because of a power outage that may have been heat-related.
In New Hampshire, rescue crews helped a 29-year-old hiker late Saturday after he was overcome by the heat in the White Mountain National Forest.
In New Jersey, the Oceanic Bridge over the Navesink River was closed Saturday evening after it got stuck open. Monmouth County officials say heat caused expansion of the metal encasing the drawbridge, which is a popular route for residents and beachgoers.
The heat even prompted Delaware officials to close Fort Delaware State Park, which served as a Union prison camp during the Civil War. Temperatures were simply too high for costumed interpreters who wear wool garb to work safely this weekend, officials said.
The National Weather Service reported high temperatures for July 20 were recorded Saturday at its weather stations in Atlantic City, New Jersey, New York City, Westfield, Massachusetts, Manchester, New Hampshire, and Wallops Island, Virginia.
The Minerve submarine was lost off France’s southern coast with 52 sailors on board on January 17, 1968
Marseille (AFP) – A French submarine that went missing in the western Mediterranean in 1968 has been found, officials said Monday, ending a 51-year wait for families of the crew who continue to seek answers to the naval disaster.
The diesel-electric Minerve submarine was lost off France’s southern coast with 52 sailors on board on January 27, 1968.
„We found the submarine Minerve last night located 45 kilometres (30 miles) south of Toulon, about 20 kilometres further south than where it was searched for in 1968,” the French maritime prefect of the Mediterranean, Vice Admiral Charles Henri du Che, told reporters in Toulon.
Defence Minister Florence Parly on Twitter hailed the discovery as „a success, a relief and a technical feat”, adding she was thinking of the families who had „waited for this moment for so long.”
At the start of the year, Parly announced a new search mission involving naval vessels and marine experts following fresh demands from families for an effort to find the final resting place of their loved ones.
„It’s a relief, hugely emotional,” the son of the Minerve’s captain, Herve Fauve, told AFP after years of calling for the search mission. „These 52 sailors had been abandoned in some ways.”
Tides and currents in the western Mediterranean were modelled by the French team, as well as seismic data from the time that indicated the likely implosion of the vessel as it dropped to the seabed.
The discovery was ultimately made on Sunday by a boat belonging to private US company Ocean Infinity, which found the Minerve at a depth of 2,370 metres (7,800 feet), a senior French naval officer told AFP.
The search vessel — the Seabed Constructor, which is equipped with underwater drones with powerful cameras — arrived on the scene last Tuesday, the officer said on condition of anonymity.
The Seabed Constructor was also successful in locating Argentina’s lost San Juan submarine in November 2018 which disappeared in the Atlantic Ocean a year earlier.
– Naval mystery –
The cause of the loss of the Minerve has never been confirmed but the news that it has been found fought joy and relief to families.
„I can’t find the words to describe my emotion,” the wife of one of the lost sailors, Therese Scheirmann-Descamps, told AFP on Monday from her home in Toulon where she lives surrounded by black-and-white pictures of her husband Jules.
„It’s extraordinarily soothing, for my children too. It’s such a surprise, such a joy,” she added.
Fauve, who maintains a detailed website on the disaster, said there was unlikely to be any trace of the bodies.
Earlier this year, Jacques Dannay, who was just two when his father disappeared on board, said he was hoping the search mission would give him closure.
„I know it’s stupid, but for me my father isn’t really dead for as long as we haven’t found the wreck,” he told AFP as the new search mission began. „If someone told me he was alive, I’d probably believe them.”
In keeping with naval tradition, du Che said the wreck would be left where it is and not touched.
„It is a maritime sanctuary, as is the case for all shipwrecks,” he said.
– ‘Deadly year’ –
The Minerve was on a training mission in bad weather early on January 27 when it went down while returning to its base in Toulon, France’s main Mediterranean naval port.
Experts have speculated that the disaster was caused by a problem with the Minerve’s rudder, a collision with another boat, the explosion of a missile or torpedo, or a fault with its oxygen supply systems.
France is a world leader in submarine technology and its modern-day fleet of nuclear-powered vessels are seen as a key part of its defence capabilities and independence.
The year 1968 saw the loss of three other submarines around the world.
The USS Scorpion sank in the Atlantic, while the Soviet K-129 submarine armed with three nuclear missiles disappeared in the North Pacific.
It was found by the US in a covert operation in 1974.
The year was also marked by the disappearance of The Dakar, an Israeli vessel on its maiden voyage with 69 men on board. It was only found off the Greek island of Crete in 1999.