September 2013 Current Events: Disasters & Science News
Here are the key events in Science and Disasters news for the month of September 2013.
Colorado Floods Leave Thousands Stranded (Sept. 12): Flash floods around Boulder, Colorado cause massive damage, cutting off highways, destroying at least 19,000 homes and killing at least eight people. University of Colorado's main campus is closed and five hundred students and staff members are ordered to evacuate. The flooding is due to heavy rains producing record levels of rainfall. Officials expect the death toll to rise. (Sept. 15): More rain in the area complicates the rescue effort. The death toll rises to six people. More than 800 people are unaccounted for in Boulder and Larimer Counties. During a CNN Television interview, Colorado Governor John W. Hickenlooper says, "There are many, many homes that have been destroyed. A number have been collapsed, and we haven't been in them yet. So we're still dealing with that. How do we save lives first?"
Massive Fire Destroys Jersey Shore Boardwalk (Sept. 12): A fire destroys the Jersey Shore boardwalk nearly a year after Hurricane Sandy caused massive damage to the same area. The fire begins at an ice cream shop before spreading over six-blocks, taking out at least 20 businesses. The Funtown Pier, the same pier that was damaged by Hurricane Sandy, is immersed in flames. The fire wipes out months of rebuilding and recovery from the hurricane. At a news conference, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie calls the blaze "unthinkable" and admits that when he heard the news, "I said to my staff, 'I feel like I want to throw up.'" (Sept. 17): Officials declare the fire an accident. The investigation determines that the fire was caused by faulty electrical wiring, which may have been damaged by water and sand during Hurricane Sandy last fall.
Massive Storms Hit Both Coasts in Mexico (Sept. 12): Hurricane Ingrid, coming from the Pacific, and Tropical Storm Manuel, coming from the Gulf of Mexico, hit Mexico at the same time. The two storms cause flooding in several towns and cities. Major highways are cut off. Heavy rains cause deadly landslides. More than 120 people are killed. Thousands are left homeless. The government declares the storms, which are some of the most damaging in decades, a national emergency. As the storms continue, stranded tourists have to be airlifted from Acapulco to Mexico City. Although several hotels in Acapulco are not damaged from flooding and mudslides, power failures and destroyed highways make getting food and other provisions to tourists impossible. At least 40,000 tourists are stranded in Acapulco.
Magnitude 7.7 Earthquake Kills at least 327 (Sept. 23): A 7.7 magnitude earthquake hits Baluchistan, an area of deserts and mountains in Pakistan. The earthquake causes hundreds of mud houses to collapse on residents. At least 327 people are killed. The earthquake is the worst in the country since 2005 and is felt throughout South Asia. Hundreds of soldiers from Pakistan's army are airlifted to help in the rescue effort. The earthquake hits Pakistan while the country is still in mourning over the deaths of more than 80 Christians in the suicide bombing of the All Saints Church in Peshawar.