U.S.Oklahoma, Arkansas cities brace for ‘the worst flood in our history’ John Bacon•Central US braces for more tornadoes and flooding Oklahoma and Arkansas were bracing Monday for their worst-ever flooding as a new wave of storms forecast to roll through the region threatened to further bloat the Arkansas River that already has reached record crests in some areas.Tornadoes, high winds, hail and heavy rain were possible across the region, forecasters said. The storms are the latest to rip through the Midwest over the past two weeks, leaving at least nine dead and a trail of damage from high winds and flooding.In Tulsa, the Oklahoma National Guard was patrolling Tulsa’s stressed levee system.”The levee system is still operating as designed,” Mayor G.T. Bynum said Monday. But he said that could change: „We are asking for everyone to prepare for the worst-case scenario … the worst flood in our history.”More: Powerful EF3 tornado kills 2, injures 29 in Oklahoma townMore: Tornado season has been wild, and more storms are comingBynum urged residents near the levees to „proactively relocate,” and the city has opened multiple shelters. He said authorities were reviewing how such flooding would impact the city’s infrastructure.The river is forecast to reach a record crest Tuesday evening, according to the National Weather Service. Tulsa increased its releases of water from the Keystone Dam, adding to the woes downstream in Fort Smith, Arkansas, where the river already surpassed its historic crest Sunday.Justin Sloggett reacts while talking about his parents furniture store, The Saving Place Rustic Furniture and Mattress, after a suspected tornado destroyed their warehouse in Sapulpa, Okla., early Sunday, May 26, 2019.Some residents were forced to evacuate. Fort Smith Mayor George McGill said the city is experiencing record flooding, and high-water rescues were underway.McGill warned residents to be careful traveling around the city. But he said residents are known for their grit and expressed confidence the city would overcome and thrive.”It’s a sight that we’ve never seen before, but just like we recovered from other record-breaking floods we will recover from this,” McGill said. „There is nothing you can do about Mother Nature.”Scattered storms were forecast through Tuesday before the region sees a possible respite. But it might not last long.”There are early indications this weather pattern could return next weekend and into the following week with more rounds of severe weather across the central U.S,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Brett Rathbun said.This article originally appeared on USA TODAY: Oklahoma, Arkansas cities brace for ‘the worst flood in our history’
Magnitude 8 earthquake strikes Amazon jungle in Peru FRANKLIN BRICENO•Peru Earthquake Peru shaded relief map with Lima locator and EARTHQUAKE epicenter, EARTHQUAKE lettering, finished graphicLIMA, Peru (AP) — A powerful magnitude 8.0 earthquake struck a remote part of the Amazon jungle in Peru early Sunday, collapsing buildings and knocking out power to some areas but causing only one reported death.The quake struck at 2:41 a.m. and was centered in a vast nature preserve 57 miles (92 kilometers) east of the small town of Yurimaguas. Helping limit damage was the earthquake’s depth, at 70 miles (114 kilometers) below the surface, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. Earthquakes that are close to the surface generally cause more destruction.President Martín Vizcarra called for calm before traveling to the zone with members of his cabinet to survey the damage. He said first reports indicate a bridge had collapsed and several homes and roads had been affected.”It’s a quake that was felt throughout the Peruvian jungle,” said Vizcarra, who was scheduled to host a regional summit Sunday in the capital with the presidents of Bolivia, Colombia and Ecuador.Ricardo Seijas, chief of the National Emergency Operations Center, said one person died when a rock fell on a house in the Huarango district.A preliminary survey by authorities found that six people were injured and 27 homes damaged across seven provinces. Three schools, three hospitals and two churches were also affectedIn Yurimaguas, a bridge and several old houses collapsed, and the electricity was cut, according to the National Emergency Operations Center.Images circulating on social media showed residents in several parts of the country panicked as the quake shook buildings.The quake also awoke people in Lima, who ran out of their homes in fear.”It was a really long quake,” said Maria Brito, who lives on the fifth floor of an apartment building in the capital. „It could’ve been worse, and luckily it’s over.”Earthquakes are frequent in Peru, which lies on the Pacific’s so-called Ring of Fire. On August 15, 2007, a similarly sized quake struck near Lima, killing more than 500 people.
The teenager died of his injuries after begin taken to hospital in Peru’s northern region of La Libertad.
The other victim, a 48-year-old man, was reported Sunday to have been killed by falling debris while he slept at his house in Cajamarca in northern Peru. The quake struck at 2:41 am (0741 GMT).
Seijas said 15 people had been injured, with several hundred buildings destroyed or damaged.
The quake was the most powerful to hit the earthquake-prone country in 12 years, Peru’s President Martin Vizcarra said, adding that it blocked roads, damaged a bridge and knocked down houses.
„It is an earthquake affecting the entire Peruvian jungle,” he said.
Reports said 15 people had been hurt in Ecuador, where power-cuts were reported in parts of its Amazon basin region. Peruvian media said the tremor was also felt in parts of Colombia and Venezuela.
Peru lies on the so-called Ring of Fire — an arc of fault lines that circles the Pacific Basin and is prone to frequent earthquakes and volcanic eruptions.
The South American country records about 200 earthquakes a year, most of them going unnoticed by the public.
Climber reveals Everest ‘carnage’ as people step over dead bodies to reach summit
A Canadian filmmaker has vowed never to return to Everest after describing the “carnage” at the top of the mountain this year, which included having to step over a dead body.
Elia Saikaly climbed Everest for the third time this month as he filmed a documentary about four Arab women making the ascent but was shocked by the scenes at the summit.
More than 800 people have reached the peak this year, with at least 10 fatalities. A photograph of the queue to reach the summit went viral last week.
„Death. Carnage. Chaos,” was how Mr Saikaly, an experienced mountain climber, summed up what he saw after setting off to summit Everest on May 22.
In an interview with The Ottowan Citizen, the newspaper of his hometown, Mr Saikaly said that despite climbing the mountain three times he would not be returning again.
“Do I think I’ll go back? I don’t think so. Not after this season… It was pretty horrific.”
Mr Saikaly told The Telegraph: „When we left at 9.30pm it was very alarming as within 20 minutes we saw two Sherpas had brought down a deceased climber.
„Within 45 minutes an Indian climber was brought down who was delirious and screaming and yelling which are the signs of acute mountain sickness.”
Roughly three hours into the climb, his group was forced to walk over another dead mountaineer.
„It was incredibly bizarre… every single climber making their way to the summit had to step over this person – absolutely devastating.”
With temperatures dropping to minus 30 degrees his group was then forced to wait in the ‘death zone’ to reach the summit of the world’s highest mountain while „50 or 60” others at the top paused to take selfies.
Many were traumatised after passing another dead body near to the summit.
„You are climbing this very famous iconic obstacle and just beneath you is a climber’s body, lifeless and lying there and you don’t know what to do or feel but you know you have to move or else you could be the next victim, ” Mr Saikaly said.
„This is your dream… and we all reached the summit and most of us didn’t want to touch the highest point on earth because there were so many people up there.”
An American climber became the latest fatality on the mountain on Monday.
Christopher Kulish, a 62-year-old Colorado lawyer , died at a camp below the summit during his descent. The cause isn’t yet known, said his brother, Mark Kulish of Denver.
He had just reached the top of Everest with a small group after crowds of hundreds of climbers congested the 29,035-foot (8,850-meter) peak last week, his brother said.
„He saw his last sunrise from the highest peak on Earth. At that instant, he became a member of the ‘7 Summit Club,’ having scaled the highest peak on each continent,” Mark Kulish said in a statement.
He described his brother as a lawyer in his „day job” who was „an inveterate climber of peaks in Colorado, the West and the world over.”
„He passed away doing what he loved, after returning to the next camp below the peak,” Mark Kulish said.
A British climber Robin Hanes Fisher was also among those who died last week.
The 44-year-old died on his descent after reaching the 8,850-metre (29,035 feet) summit of the world’s highest mountain.
He had admitted before setting off that he feared the dangers of overcrowding in the „death zone”.
The scale of the problem was revealed on Monday when local authorities retrieved four bodies and some ten tonnes of garbage.
As this year’s climbing season comes to an end, army helicopters and porters transported the refuse down to Namche Bazar, the last major town on the route to Mount Everest.
Global warming means melting glaciers are revealing human remains and rubbish, which has gathered over decades of commercial mountaineering and as an increasing number of big-spending climbers who pay little attention to the ugly footprint they leave behind.
The four bodies were brought down by helicopter last week according to media reports.
The 14-strong team sent by the government spent about six weeks scouring for litter at base camp and at Camp 4 – nearly 8,000 metres up – scraping together empty cans, bottles, plastic and discarded climbing gear.