Hi everyone! It’s Justin Stapleton and we’re back for another whip around the world of wild weather!
Last week, Caroline showed the devastating flooding and subsequent damage to Yellowstone National Park. Thankfully, the update this week is a good one: While some of the park will remain closed for repairs, they were able to open a number of entry points so that people can, once again, enjoy one of the most beautiful places I’ve ever been to here in the old US of A.
There are a lot of other stories across the nation and across the globe that are really impactful, and fascinating. Let’s dive in!
At least 84 people have died in landslides, lightning strikes and flash floods across India and Bangladesh in the past week, according to officials in both countries.
Northeastern India and northern Bangladesh have been particularly badly hit by severe weather, which has prompted some of the worst flooding in the region in years and left some towns cut off.
According to officials and aid workers in the region, more than 633,000 people have been affected by the floods, and airdrops of essential commodities for certain districts that are cut off by road are being conducted.
In Bangladesh, flooding has submerged roads and highways and isolated entire districts from the rest of the country.
These extreme weather events in South Asia are becoming increasingly frequent due to climate change, with temperatures in parts of India and Pakistan reaching record levels during a heat wave in April and May. These heat waves are kicking off earlier and earlier in the season. Scientists said that climate change had made the possibility of a record-breaking heat wave hitting India and Pakistan “100 times more likely.”
Parts of Afghanistan were rocked by the deadliest earthquake in decades this week when a magnitude 5.9 earthquake struck the country’s east quad, killing more than 1,000 people and wounding many more, according to regional officials.
The Taliban-led government has been asking for foreign aid along with surrounding countries resources. Najibullah Sadid, an Afghan water resources management expert, said the earthquake had coincided with heavy monsoon rain in the region – making traditional houses, many made of mud and other natural materials, particularly vulnerable to damage. In addition, the early morning earthquake was fairly shallow, 6.2 miles deep so most of the damage was fairly localized; however, remember that most of Afghanistan and Pakistan (which was very close to the epicenter) are fairly mountainous, so impacts of elevation plus poor structural composition of homes and buildings can compound the damage.
Afghanistan has a long history of earthquakes, many of which happen in the mountainous Hindu Kush region that borders with Pakistan in the east. In 2015, a quake that shook parts of South Asia killed more than 300 people in Afghanistan, Pakistan and India. More than 1,000 people died in 2002 after two earthquakes in northwestern Afghanistan. A powerful earthquake struck the same region in the 1998, killing about 4,700 people, with information compiled from the National Centers for Environmental Information.
Back home -- hot remains the key focus when it comes to weather. No tropical trouble yet this season. Hopefully it stays that way. Remember you can find the KPRC 2 forecast whenever you need it on the Weather page of Click2Houston.com or on our weather and hurricane apps - which are available for free and can be found by searching KPRC in your app store.