The Northern Hemisphere Just Experienced Its First-Ever Category 5 Cyclone in February

‘Ice tsunami’ crashes onto northern lake shores. Here’s why.

Winter is coming to towns along the shores of the Great Lakes—literally, as walls of ice have risen from the lakes and piled up on shorelines.

These ominous “ice tsunamis”—some of which are big enough to overwhelm lampposts and retaining walls—aren’t marketing stunts for the final season of Game of Thrones. Instead, they’re piles of broken-up ice blown to shore by especially strong winds.

Since Sunday, gusts of 60 miles an hour or more have been hammering the region around the Great Lakes, knocking out power and delaying air travel. Pictures shared on social media and by local emergency services also show sprawling floes of ice cluttering up beaches, roads, and even some lakeside residences….


The Northern Hemisphere Just Experienced Its First-Ever Category 5 Cyclone in February

Typhoon Wutip near Philippine waters

We’ve seen a lot of weird-ass tropical cyclones in recent years. This week, we can add another one to the list.

Typhoon Wutip formed and brushed Guam late last week. That alone made it an oddity in terms of timing and location. But rather than weakening as forecast, the storm blew up into a Category 5 monster over the weekend. That makes Wutip the first Category 5 storm of any kind—typhoon, cyclone, or hurricane—ever recorded in the Northern Hemisphere in February.

When we covered Wutip on Friday, all forecasts pointed to the storm wimping out over the weekend. Instead, the storm exploded into a super typhoon, a storm with winds in excess of 150 mph, on Saturday into early Sunday morning. Its sustained winds leaped from from 125 mph to 160 mph in just 12 hours with gusts reaching up to 180 mph, according to the Joint Typhoon Warning Center. That put it well above the previous February record holder, Super Typhoon Higos, which saw winds top out at 150 mph winds in February 2015. It also made Wutip the first February Category 5-equivalent storm to form not just in the Pacific but anywhere in the northern hemisphere…


New fund to help protect Queenslanders from disasters

The Premier has announced the first round of a new $38 million fund to better protect Queensland communities from natural disasters was now open.

Premier Annastacia Palaszczuk announced in Parliament today that local governments, state agencies and non-government organisations could now apply for a share of the $38 million Queensland Disaster Resilience Fund.

“Queensland is the most disaster-impacted state in Australia,” Ms Palaszczuk said.

“Since 2011, the state has faced more than 60 natural disasters, causing more than $14.5 billion in damage to public infrastructure while disrupting homes, schools and businesses.

“This disaster season alone has shown we can be fighting catastrophic bushfires and dealing with unprecedented flooding and the possibility of a tropical cyclone in a matter of weeks.

“We all know that in Queensland, it’s a matter of “when” not “if” a disaster will strike…


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