Featured articles - The Watchers

Asteroid 2020 UF3 flew past Earth at 0.11 LD, 14th of the month within 1LD

A newly-discovered asteroid designated 2020 UF3 flew past Earth at a very close distance of 0.11 LD / 0.00029 AU (43 383 km / 26 957 miles) at 22:17 UTC on October 22, 2020. This is the 14th known asteroid to flyby Earth within 1 lunar distance thi...
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Severe weather claims 22 lives, affects 16 657 people across Mozambique

At least 22 people have lost their lives and 16 657 have been affected by natural calamities caused by severe weather in Mozambique since the beginning of October 2020. 16 657 people from 3 695 households have been affected by floods in the province...
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Shallow M6.0 earthquake hits West Chile Rise

A shallow earthquake registered by the USGS as M6.0 hit West Chile Rise at 01:46 UTC on October 23, 2020. The agency is reporting a depth of 10 km (6.2 miles). EMSC is reporting the same magnitude and depth. The epicenter was located 1 548 km (960 mi...
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Deep M6.1 earthquake hits south of the Fiji islands

A deep earthquake registered by the USGS as M6.1 hit south of the Fiji islands at 07:04 UTC on October 23, 2020. The agency is reporting a depth of 463 km (287 miles). EMSC is reporting the same magnitude and depth. The epicenter was located 692 km (...
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Low pressure intensifies into Tropical Depression "Quinta" -- threatening Bicol, Philippines

A Low-Pressure Area (LPA) over the Philippine Sea has developed into a tropical depression-- locally named "Quinta"-- at 06:00 UTC (14:00 LT) on Friday, October 23, 2020. It is forecast to reach a tropical storm strength on Sunday, October ...
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Ash emissions at Etna volcano disrupt flights at Catania International Airport, Italy

Increased explosive activity accompanied by significant ash emissions started at Etna's New Southeast Crater (NSEC) shortly before 06:00 UTC on Friday, October 23, 2020. The Aviation Color Code was raised to Red at 05:53 UTC and lowered back to O...
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Epsilon rapidly intensified into a major hurricane on its way to Bermuda

Epsilon rapidly strengthened into a major hurricane on its way to Bermuda and is now slowly weakening. A Tropical Storm Warning is in effect for Bermuda where tropical storm conditions are expected intermittently through this evening (AST). Accordin...
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Waterspout outbreak and flooding hit southern Greece

Flooding and waterspout outbreak hit southern Greece after heavy rains struck the islands on Wednesday, October 21, 2020. Several people were trapped in floodwaters but were successfully rescued. No injuries were reported. According to the World Mete...
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The Weekly Volcanic Activity Report: October 14 - 20, 2020

New activity/unrest was reported for 2 volcanoes from October 14 to 20, 2020. During the same period, ongoing activity was reported for 13 volcanoes. New activity/unrest: Karymsky, Eastern Kamchatka (Russia) | Klyuchevskoy, Central Kamchatka (Russia)...
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Strong eruption at Bezymianny volcano, ash up to 9.5 km (31 000 feet) a.s.l., Russia

A strong eruption started at the Russian Bezymianny volcano at 20:22 UTC on October 21, 2020, ejecting ash up to 9.5 km (31 000 feet) above sea level. The Aviation Color Code was raised to Red at 21:51 UTC and lowered back to Orange at 03:19 UTC on O...
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Widespread flooding leaves at least 31 people dead, more than 150 000 families affected across Cambodia

Extensive flooding has left about 156 137 families affected and at least 31 people dead across Cambodia as of Wednesday, October 21, 2020, as heavy rains have been pounding much of the country since earlier this month. Around 13 318 families have bee...
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M5.6 earthquake hits Reykjanes peninsula, the largest since 2003, Iceland

A shallow M5.6 earthquake hit about 5 km (3.1 miles) W of the geothermal area in Seltun on Iceland's Reykjanes peninsula at 13:43 UTC on October 20, 2020. This is the largest earthquake measured in the peninsula since 2003. According to the Icela...
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OSIRIS-REx touches down on asteroid Bennu in 'historic and incredible feat'

NASA's OSIRIS-REx (Origins, Spectral Interpretation, Resource Identification, Security, Regolith Explorer) spacecraft has successfully touched down on asteroid Bennu on October 20, 2020, in what was described by scientists as a "historic&quo...
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Early-season winter storm hits northern U.S., breaking scores of snowfall records

A winter storm hit parts of the northern U.S. this week, breaking scores of snowfall records in Montana, Iowa, and Minnesota, where more than 1 100 road accidents were reported due to heavy snow. A deepening upper-level trough and a surge of cold Can...
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Weeks of flooding leave 155 people dead in Nigeria

At least 155 people have been killed and 25 000 displaced after heavy rains and floods started affecting Nigeria in September. Torrential rainfall, river, and flash floods since September have cumulatively impacted 192 594 people across 22 Nigerian s...
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444 dead, 101 missing in monsoon-related disasters in Nepal

A total of 444 people died while 101 others went missing due to various monsoon-related natural disasters since April 2020 in Nepal, the Natural Disaster Risk Reduction and Management Authority (NDRRMA) said. The calamities include floods, landslides...
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Bright fireball explodes over Puerto Rico

A brilliant fireball exploded over the night sky in Puerto Rico around 07:45 UTC (03:45 LT) on Saturday, October 17, 2020. The trajectory suggests that it moved over the Mona channel towards Desecheo, according to the Society of Astronomy of the Cari...
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Tropical Storm "Saudel" (Pepito) intensifies ahead of landfall over Aurora, Philippines

Tropical Storm "Saudel" -- named Pepito in the Philippines -- is slowly intensifying before its expected landfall over Aurora Province, Philippines, between 10:00 and 14:00 UTC (18:00 to 22:00 LT) on October 20, 2020. Saudel is the 17th nam...
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Powerful Storm Barbara hits Portugal and Spain

An impressive deep cyclone named Storm Barbara by the Spanish meteorological agency is moving into Europe on October 20, 2020, bringing powerful winds and very heavy rainfall. The first to feel its effects are Portugal and Spain where Red and Orange ...
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Tropical Storm "Epsilon" forms, expected to be at or near hurricane strength near Bermuda

Tropical Storm "Epsilon" formed at 15:00 UTC on October 19, 2020, breaking the record for the earliest 26th named Atlantic storm. Epsilon formed 34 days before Tropical Storm "Delta" in 2005. Epsilon is the 3rd named storm in the ...
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