California fire crews, aided by cooler weather, report ‘great progress’ against LNU, SCU lightning complex fires by Jessica Flores, USA TODAY•Why wildfires in the western U.S. are only going to get worse
Firefighters continued to gain ground Sunday against the nearly two dozen wildfires blazing in California — including the two complex fires in the San Francisco Bay Area that have burned more than 750,000 acres and forced hundreds of thousands of evacuations.
„Overall, firefighters [are] making great progress. We’ll continue to see containment efforts go up,” Cal Fire spokesman Daniel Berlant said on Twitter.
Evacuation orders have been lifted or downgraded to warnings for the LNU Lightning Complex Fire in the state’s wine country in the Napa Valley, north of San Francisco. But more than 60,000 people remain under mandatory evacuation throughout the state.
The LNU Lightning Complex Fire, which began Aug. 17, has burned 375,209 acres, destroyed over 1,200 homes and killed five people, according to Cal Fire. It was 56% contained as of 2 p.m. PT Sunday.
California’s air quality is worse than India’s: That’s not good in a pandemic
Meanwhile, the SCU Lightning Complex Fire, east of San Jose, has burned 377,471 acres across five counties since igniting on Aug. 18. It was 50% contained.
A third complex fire near Santa Cruz, the CZU, had burned nearly 85,000 acres and was 35% contained as of Sunday afternoon.
Cooler weekend weather helped fire crews, Cal Fire said. But temperatures are forecast to reach nearly 100 degrees this week, with gusty winds that can lead to „critical fire weather conditions,” the National Weather Service said.
The NWS issued a red flag warning with gusty winds and low relative humidity expected in interior Del Norte County and far northeast Humboldt County in Northern California from 5 p.m. Sunday local time through 11 a.m. Monday.
“Over the next week or two we will be at the climatological peak of fire weather season in northwest California, and fuel conditions are near or exceeding critical thresholds over much of our area,” the weather service said.
Contributing: The Associated Press
This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: California fire crews report ‘great progress’ against state wildfires
The number of people killed when a restaurant in northern China collapsed has climbed to 29, state media said Sunday, with efforts to find survivors brought to a close.
The two-storey building in Xiangfen county, Shanxi province, came down on Saturday morning during an 80th birthday party, according to official news agency Xinhua.
A total of 57 people have been pulled from the debris of the Juxian restaurant, with dozens injured.
Seven people are seriously hurt, although Xinhua said the injuries were „not life-threatening”.
State broadcaster CGTN said the rescue operation ended in the early hours of Sunday morning.
The cause of the collapse is unknown and the central government’s State Council said it would supervise an investigation by provincial authorities.
Footage on the CGTN website showed the roof caved in, with rescue equipment lifting rubble from the site.
Rescuers in orange overalls and hard hats combed the crumbled ruin as a painting remained hanging on one of the few walls still intact.
Seven hundred people were involved in the rescue operation, CGTN said.
China is no stranger to building collapses or deadly construction accidents, which are typically blamed on the country’s rapid growth that has led to corner-cutting by builders and the widespread flouting of safety rules.
A hotel collapse in southern China’s Quanzhou city in March killed 29 people and injured another 42.
An official investigation found three floors had been added illegally to the original four-story structure, and safety assessors had colluded with the hotel’s owner to produce false reports about the building, state broadcaster CCTV said.
LAFAYETTE, La. — It’s Wednesday, Aug. 26, at 8 p.m. Central time. Hurricane prep is complete, or at least as much as I am going to get done. I have moved in all of our patio furniture cushions, pulled in anything that can become a projectile. Gassed up the vehicle and closed up the garage and doors, sealed tight.
I feel rather safe, we have a rather new home that is completely up to hurricane code standards, I have two Great Danes, Whiskey and Mojito, (very Louisiana-appropriate names) and they will keep guard for the night. Earlier in the day, Gov. John Edwards closed Interstate Highway 10 for the safety of drivers as it will flood.
The most troubling part is that Hurricane Laura is hitting during the night, so we won’t be able to see a thing. You can’t see tornadoes coming. You can’t see how far the trees bend. You can’t sleep because of the sounds of the storm. It’s going to be a long 24 hours, I am guessing.
It’s Thursday now. Wow the winds and rain have picked up. The rain is coming down in what sounds like sheets hitting the back of the house and our large window in the bathroom. Still have power, which is amazing but I’m so afraid to jinx it!
This has gotten much worse in the last hour and there is just no relenting. It frequently sounds like a freight train coming through but since it is so dark out its near impossible to see if there are any tornadoes. We have had what feels like 30 tornado alerts go off; the TVs and cell phones are screeching which does nothing for your sanity.
We’ve experienced the second major power flicker, but power stays on! I’m noticing some pockets of time with semi calm. The streets in our neighborhood are designed to flood in these sorts of events and prevent water from entering our homes. Flooded they certainly are — looking at our outdoor camera it appears to be about 3 feet deep and water is coming up into our driveways.
Yup, a bit of a slowdown now. Certainly, can tell that things are getting better. And we still have power!
I am pull myself out of bed and check things out. Hot coffee brews while the winds still blow; water has receded down to maybe only 6 inches in our street. Neighbors are out walking around and folks appear rather happy. I turn on the news and the news crews are just beginning to venture out and survey the damage. Watching KATC channel 3 got me through the night and it is shocking now how well it appears Lafayette fared through this storm, which had winds stronger than 2005’s Hurricane Rita.
Live shots from Lake Charles, Louisiana, show that a casino boat has broken lose and hit the bridge going over I-10, that bridge is already unstable so this likely is going to close that leg of I-10 for a while.
There is a massive fire over in Lake Charles — from a chemical plant that makes chlorine to be used in pools. A shelter in place order has been issued for the area due to this. As is often the case with hurricanes, the issues arising just after the storm tend to be worse than the actual storm itself; just consider Katrina and the levees breaking. Started hearing from friends in the hardest hit areas — they evacuated, thankfully.
I step out to finally see for myself. The water is nearly gone from our streets but still our storm drains are full, likely due to the rivers being so high and potentially still flowing backwards.
Driving down Johnston Street it is great to see most businesses did really well, though shockingly one of the cement benches at a bus stop was pushed over by the wind.
Power service trucks are being deployed from the nearby mall with its huge parking lot. Crews head out to get to restoring power, clearly these trucks are from all over the nation, and it really makes you feel good seeing all this help and cooperation.
Gov. Edwards gives an update. Certainly, happy that the storm surge was not nearly as bad as we had thought it would be, mostly due to the slight change in the direction of the storm. It is beyond shocking that when Laura arrived in Shreveport, she was still a hurricane.
Still, four people are dead, over 600,000 people are without power and it just hit 90 degrees. This is one for the history books, in an already historic year.
Stephen Handwerk has lived in Lafayette, Louisiana, for more than 20 years, and has gone through several strong hurricanes including Katrina, Rita and Lili.
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This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Hurricane Laura: Louisiana dodged the worst of the storm
With the dissipation of former Hurricane Laura, the Atlantic tropical basin has settled down. But, this quiet period isn’t expected to last long as AccuWeather meteorologists will be monitoring multiple areas for tropical development this week as we approach the climatological peak of hurricane season.
A disturbance moving along a cold front in the southeastern United States is the first area being monitored for strengthening this week. This front is part of the same system that absorbed Tropical Rainstorm Laura after it helped to fuel areas of heavy rain and severe thunderstorms to the Northeast on Saturday.
This tropical disturbance emerged off of the coast of northern Florida early in the day on Sunday and forecast to move into an area of low wind shear and warm water.
„The first and most immediate threat for development is tracking away from Florida and will move along the Southeast coast of the United States early this week,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Adam Douty.
„This feature is expected to become better organized and can develop into a tropical depression by the middle of the week as it passes between the East Coast and Bermuda,” added Douty.
Through the second half of the week, the storm is forecast to track to the northeast into the northern Atlantic Ocean. If a non-tropical storm system is able to pull this tropical feature farther north, it could bring impacts to Atlantic Canada late this week.
„Other than an increase in surf and showers along the Carolina coast on Monday and Tuesday, this does not appear to be a significant threat to the United States,” stated Douty.
Another area being monitored for tropical development is a tropical wave, or disturbance, that moved into the eastern Caribbean on Saturday.
This disturbance is quickly organizing as it tracks through an area conducive for tropical development. Warm waters of the Caribbean Sea and an area of low wind shear over the region could allow this feature to develop into a tropical depression by the beginning of the week.
Regardless of development, this feature will bring tropical downpours and gusty winds to the Caribbean as it tracks toward Central America through Wednesday.
A third area will be monitored for tropical development later this week after a tropical wave moves off the coast of Africa. According to Douty, this feature could develop into a tropical depression around the end of week or into the weekend.
AccuWeather forecasters will continue to monitor this area for intensity as it tracks across the Atlantic and toward the Lesser Antilles into next week.
September is typically the busiest month for tropical storm development, and the peak date for tropical activity is usually around Sept. 10. Over the past 100 years on this date, there have been more than 90 active named storms.
The 2020 season has already brought 13 named storms, which is not only well ahead of the average pace, but also in record territory, even surpassing the infamous 2005 season. The year 2005 brought Katrina, Rita and Wilma. This year, Cristobal and all the storms from Edouard through Marco set early season formation records for their respective letters.
Thus far, Laura has had the most devastating impact on the United States and also left more than 20 dead in the Caribbean as it unleashed heavy flooding rain in Haiti, the Dominican Republic, Cuba and Puerto Rico.
The next names on the list for 2020 are Nana and Omar. Nate holds the early formation record for the „N” storms on Sept. 5, 2005, and Ophelia holds the early formation record for the „O” storms on Sept. 7, 2005.
There have been seven named systems that have made landfall in the continental United States this year, a record amount to have occurred by the end of August. This record was set when Laura made landfall on Aug. 27, breaking the previous marks set in 1886 and 1916 with six through the end of August, according to Colorado State University Meteorologist Phil Klotzbach. In addition to Laura, Marco, Isaias, Hanna, Fay, Cristobal and Bertha all made landfall.
Additional landfalls are likely in the U.S. prior to the end of the 2020 Atlantic hurricane season.
Keep checking back on AccuWeather.com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather Network on DirecTV, Frontier and Verizon Fios.
Already looking forward to fall? We don’t blame you—after relentless heat waves (and nowhere to be but home), those crisp, cool days are starting to look better than ever.
Autumn is less than a month away, but depending on your region, you might have to wait a little longer than normal to notice a chill in the air. Before you shut off the AC and light that pumpkin candle, here’s everything you need to know about the fall 2020 weather forecast:
When is the first day of fall?
The first day of autumn in 2020 is Tuesday, September 22—but don’t expect temperatures to cool down by then. Based on last year’s averages and this year’s lingering heat, most parts of the country probably won’t experience proper sweater weather until later in the season.
It’s not just you: Temperatures have soared this year. The highest temperature in over a century was recorded in Death Valley earlier this month. In July, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) reported that 2020 has a high chance of being the hottest year in recorded history. Fall will bring some relief, but you can expect warmer, weirder weather in the years to come due to climate change.
When will temperatures cool down in autumn 2020?
Most of the United States usually experiences summer-like temperatures through September, and that likely won’t change this year. For most parts of the country, the weather will start to cool down in October, but will remain above average through November, according to AccuWeather and The Weather Channel.
Past data from the NOAA indicates that the Rockies, the Midwest, the Pacific Northwest, and the Northeast experience the most dramatic drops in October. The Sun Belt and the Southeast, meanwhile, usually see lower temperatures starting in November.
What will fall temperatures feel like?
Even when temperatures do start to drop later in the season, they might not be as low as usual. Across the board, weather authorities predict above average temperatures throughout much of the United States.
NOAA’s Climate Prediction Center expects higher averages throughout all of the United States from September through November; warmer temperatures are most likely in the Southwest, Alaska, and the Northeast. The Weather Channel also predicts warmer weather in those regions. On the other end of the spectrum, parts of the Midwest and Southeast are more likely to be closer to normal, but they’re still expected to be above average.
Above average temperatures don’t automatically mean hot weather, though—they just won’t dip as low as they normally do. Chilly weather is still on the way; The Farmers’ Almanac even predicts light, sparse snowfall in many parts of the country before winter officially begins on December 21. (Until then, we’ll be busy watching fall movies, sipping autumnal cocktails, and looking forward to leaf-peeping.)