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Snow and Ice Close Bluewater Bridge and Highway; 300 Cars Stranded

A long stretch of Ontario’s Highway 402 is shut down indefinitely and under a state of emergency due to heavy snowfall on Tuesday.  The snow has also led to the closure of the Bluewater Bridge, a gateway between the U.S. and Canada.
Icy and snowy conditions have Highway 402 in Ontario designated as “closed” from the Bluewater Bridge to Highway 401 in London.  The Canadian military was called in for help, with search and rescue helicopters and snowmobiles looking for stranded motorists.  Front-end loaders were also reportedly brought in to remove drifts burying the vehicles.
“We have up to 300 motorists who’ve been stranded for up to 15 hours now,” Sgt. Dave Rektor of the Ontario Provincial Police western region said Tuesday morning. “It’s still snowing heavy, nonstop dense snow. We have snow banks four and five feet high we’re trying to traverse on snowmobiles to get to those people.”
The Detroit-Windsor Tunnel is open and ready to take commercial and passenger vehicles that would otherwise use the Bluewater Bridge in Sarnia/Port Huron, according to reports.

Posted in News, Travel, US, Weather24 Comments

Perseid Meteor Shower August 2010 NASA Chat Live INFO

The Perseid meteor shower is taking place during August of 2010 – and tonight is the peak for seeing the perseid meteors, or thefireworks in the sky.  To educate the public and gain awareness about the science behind the annual event, NASA is hosting a live chat and streaming video.  Users can tweet their questions to Bill Cooke, the scientist on duty. He will answer the inquiries as early as possible via NASA’s chat.

NASA CHAT HERE

Those who live in cities should drive out to the country, where the view of the shower won’t be blocked by the city lights.  For many this involves making tonight an early and unique date night.

As many as 90 to 100 meteors per hour can be expected, and in optimal viewing conditions about 40 per hour can be expected to be seen with the naked eye.  In many areas you won’t need binoculars to see the show – which starts at 10:00 PM no matter where you are.  Peak viewing occurs between 3 and 4 am. Dont forget about this year’s shower!

Posted in Science80 Comments

Discovery Channel’s Shark Week: Watch Live Shark Cam

Cue the “Jaws” movie theme … it is time once again for Shark Week on the Discovery Channel.

Discovery Channel's Shark Week

Shark Week

The entire week of programming is dedicated to sharks, but you can also check out the action online.

The “Shark Cam” on the Discovery Channel’s web site features live video of the “Ocean Voyager” exhibit at the Georgia Aquarium in Atlanta, Ga. The “Shark Cam” live events kicked off on Sunday with an interactive dive tour at 12:30 p.m. ET, a sand tiger and hammerhead shark feeding at 1:30 p.m. ET.

As for the rest of Sunday’s schedule, a whale shark feeding will occur at 3 p.m. ET and an expert chat at 11 p.m. ET.

Click here to view the “Shark Cam” online. You can also interact with other shark fans via Facebook, as well as watch videos and participate in a live chat session with a shark expert.

Below is the “Shark Cam” schedule for Shark Week:

Daily Schedule:
-   Live webcam at Ocean Voyager streams 24/7.
-   Lights out from Midnight ET to 7 a.m. ET.
Sunday, August 1:
-   12:30 p.m.: Interactive dive show in Ocean Voyager window.
-   1:30 p.m.: Tong feeding session with sand tiger and hammerhead sharks.
-   3 p.m.: Whale shark feeding session on top of Ocean Voyager.
-   11 p.m.: Live chat session with shark expert Chris Wojcik and web audience.

Monday, August 2:
-   12:30 p.m.: Interactive dive show in Ocean Voyager window.
-   1:30 p.m.: Tong feeding session with sand tiger and hammerhead sharks.
-   3:00 p.m.: Whale shark feeding session on top of Ocean Voyager.
-   11 p.m.: Live chat session with shark expert Chris Wojcik and web audience.

Tuesday, August 3:
-   12:30 p.m.: Interactive dive show in Ocean Voyager window.
-   1:30 p.m.: Tong feeding session with sand tiger and hammerhead sharks.
-   3 p.m.: Whale shark feeding session on top of Ocean Voyager.
-   10 p.m.: Live chat session with shark expert Chris Wojcik and web audience.

Wednesday, August 4:
-   12:30 p.m.: Interactive dive show in Ocean Voyager window.
-   1:30 p.m.: Tong feeding session with sand tiger and hammerhead sharks.
-   3 p.m.: Whale shark feeding session on top of Ocean Voyager.
-   11 p.m.: Live chat session with shark expert Chris Wojcik and web audience.

For more about Shark Week, click here.

Posted in Entertainment, Environment, News, Science, Television, US29 Comments

First Day of Summer Is Here, But What Is Summer Solstice?

The first day of summer is finally here!

Summer officially kicked off on Monday, June 21, 2010, at 7:28 a.m. ET, which means the beginning of the summer solstice and the longest day of the year, at least in the Northern Hemisphere.  According to National Geographic, the summer solstice is a result of the Earth’s north-south axis being tilted 23.5 degrees relative to the sun. The tilt causes different amounts of sunlight to reach different regions of the planet.

On the summer solstice, the Northern Hemisphere receives more sunlight than on any other day of the year, but that doesn’t mean the first day of summer is also the hottest day of summer.  To learn more about the science behind the summer solstice, click here.

Posted in Environment, News, Science, US, Weather, World26 Comments

Earthquake Rattles Puerto Rico

An earthquake rattled Puerto Rico early Sunday, damaging houses in western and northern towns and causing a rock slide on a highway, according to The Associated Press (AP).

The magnitude-5.8 earthquake struck at 1:16 a.m. (0516 GMT) Sunday about four miles from the small community of Espino on the western side of the U.S. Caribbean island and 63 miles from the capital, San Juan, where it was felt by high-rise dwellers, according to the U.S. Geological Survey.

Melina Simeonides, a representative for Puerto Rico’s emergency management agency, said the quake also spilled rocks over a highway in Utuado, where it also shifted a concrete house four inches from its foundation.

Engineers and authorities were assessing the damage on Sunday.  No injuries have been reported.

Posted in Environment, News, Science, World20 Comments

Ash Plume of Iceland Volcano Seen From Space

The ash plume from the Eyjafjallajokull volcano has been captured in satellite images from space.

Eyjafjallajokull Glacier Volcano in Iceland, Nasa Satellite Image

Iceland Volcano Ash NASA Satellite Image (AP)

NASA’s Terra satellite captured a visible image of the ash plume from the Eyjafjallajokull volcano (right).  For more images and information from NASA, click here.

The volcanic ash continues to drift across parts of Northern Europe on Friday.  It has halted air travel in some areas, leaving thousands of passengers stranded. 

Eurocontrol, the European air traffic agency, said the travel disruptions throughout the world Thursday were even worse on Friday, with about 11,000 flights expected to operate in Europe instead of the usual 28,000, according to The Associated Press. Eurocontrol said delays will continue well into Saturday as the ash cloud moves slowly south and east.

The U.N. also warned of possible health risks from falling ash.

Posted in Environment, News, Science, Technology, US, World69 Comments

Earthquake Shakes Southern California

An earthquake rattled Southern California early Tuesday morning.

The quake, which occurred at about 4 a.m., was measured at a 4.4 magnitude, according to the U.S. Geological Survey. It was centered about one mile from Pico Rivera, Calif., and about 11 miles from the Los Angeles Civic Center.

Los Angeles County Fire Department supervisor Andre Gougis told The Associated Press that the agency was surveying the area, but had received no immediate reports of damage.

Posted in Environment, News, Science, US27 Comments

Fire at Carlton Towers, 9 Dead 5o Hurt

Nine people have died in a major fire that broke out in the Carlton Towers, a high-rise office complex in Bangalore, India. The deaths were caused either by choking in smoke or injuries when someone tried to jump from the seven story building, fire officials said.

Nine, six men and three women, died and around 50 injured in the incident.

The fire broke out on the fifth floor office of an IT firm around 4 p.m., trapping several hundreds in the Carlton Towers, an office building on the busy old Airport Road in Bangalore’s central business district.

Visuals caught on cell phones and televisions showed a woman trying to jump from the seventh floor to the sixth, slipping and falling to the ground. Another showed a man jumping to the ground from the top floor. It is feared they are among the nine dead.

A large number of people were trapped in the building. A user stuck in the building tweeted about the incident:

“Carlton Towers is on fire and six of us are trapped inside the building. The fire’s above but there’s smoke everywhere. Saw people jump to their death. Don’t call me folks. You can’t help. Will keep you posted.”

The blaze suspected to have been triggered by a short circuit, created panic with several inside the building for help and many others breaking the window panes.

Posted in Companies, Fire, News3 Comments

Rare Earthquake Rattles Illinois

A rare magnitude-3.8 earthquake rattled northern Illinois on Wednesday morning.

The U.S. Geological Survey (USGS) reported a 3.8-magnitude quake at 3:59:33 a.m. centered in a farm field on Plank Road in Elgin near Hampshire and 3.1 miles underground.  The location is about 45 miles northwest of the city of Chicago.

USGS geophysicist Amy Vaughan said such quakes are rare in northern Illinois, according to a report by The Associated Press.

Vaughan said residents in Iowa, Indiana, Wisconsin, and Michigan also reported feeling the quake.

DeKalb County Sheriff Roger Scott said there have been no reports of damage or injuries, according to a Chicago Tribune report.

Posted in Environment, News, Science, US, Weather26 Comments

Anderson Cooper Rescues Boy in Haiti (YouTube VIDEO)

Anderson Cooper rescues boy in Haiti.  Anderson Cooper, popular CNN journalist, was caught on tape rescuing a boy that was being stoned and beaten by looters.  In the wake of the 7.0 earthquake that shook the city of Port-au-Prince it comes as no surprise that violent outburst occur over a week after the devastation.

People are suffering, hungry, and have lost everything.  Haiti is also a nation where violence occurs even under the best circumstances. 

The Haitian boy rescued by Anderson Cooper was struck with a large piece of concrete when looters tried to grab stolen items from a store.  Anderson Cooper grabbed the young boy, and swept him away to a safe place and handed him over to a local.

Currently, Anderson Cooper doesn’t know the whearabouts of the boy that he rescued.  He hopes that he is doing well, but the fact still remains that the boy is in a very dangerous place.

The death toll in Haiti is about 70,000 with as many as 100,000 feared dead. Relief efforts are underway and there was even a star studded concert last night that benefited the Haitian relief efforts.  If you missed the concert, CLICK HERE FOR DETAILS ABOUT DOWNLOADING THE PERFORMANCE ON ITUNES.

Posted in Calamity, News, Politics, US, World82 Comments