Death toll from cold front in Greece rises to three

admin   •   January 7, 2019   •   2233


A snow scenery in Athens, Greece on January 6, 2019 | Reuters

The death toll from the cold front which has been battering Greece in the first days of the new year rose to three on Sunday, local authorities said.

Firemen retrieved the bodies of two men, aged 66 and 67, at the outskirts of Keratea town, 30 km southeast of Athens, according to a Fire Brigade announcement.

On Saturday, search squads also found the body of a 66-year-old woman, one of the victims’ spouse.

They were all riding a car when a heavy storm hit the area on Thursday.

As the cold front named “Sophia”, which was sweeping across Greece from Tuesday bringing snowfall and downpour in many parts of the country, receded on Sunday, Greece’s national weather service warned that a new low pressure weather system was due to hit the country on Monday evening.

“Telemachos”, as meteorologists have named the new cold front, was forecast to bring snowfall in Athens and southern Greece, after “Sophia” caused travel disruptions in the northern and central regions of the country.

The lowest temperature of minus 19 Celsius degree was recorded on Sunday at Florina town in northern Greece. — Reuters

Smoke blankets Athens from wildfire on Evia island

Robie de Guzman   •   August 13, 2019

A large wildfire on Greece’s Evia island on Tuesday (August 13) fanned by strong winds blanketed the capital Athens some 110 kilometers (70 miles) away.

The fire, which generated thick smoke, destroyed tracts of forest on Evia, firefighters said, as authorities prepared to evacuate two villages potentially in the path of the flames.

Wildfires raged uncontrolled in at least four other Greek regions, and the fire brigade said it had been called to put out 182 fires in the last three days.

More than 120 firemen, aided by helicopters and other aircraft, battled the blaze on Evia, the country’s second-largest island, where a monastery had already been evacuated.

No fatalities had been reported, and the winds were expected to subside in the evening, a fire brigade official said.

Greece often faces wildfires during its dry summer months, and authorities have warned of the high risk of blazes this week.

Last year a wildfire killed 100 people in the seaside town of Mati near Athens, and in 2007 devastating fires killed 65, scorched thousands of hectares of forest and farmland and threatened archaeological sites. (REUTERS)

(Production: Vasilis Stogiannis, Phoebe Fronista)

DOH declares national dengue epidemic due to surge of dengue cases

Aileen Cerrudo   •   August 6, 2019

Patients suffering from dengue fever receive medical treatment at an isolation ward of a government-run hospital in Manila, Philippines, 16 July 2019. (Photoville Internatioal)

The Department of Health (DOH) has declared a national dengue epidemic due to the continuous surge of dengue cases in the country.

According to the DOH, dengue cases from July 14 to 20 alone already reached over 10,000.

From January to July 20, a total of 146,062 cases with 622 death were recorded. It is 98% higher compared to the same period last year.

READ: Dengue on the rise: How to protect your family against dengue virus

“It is important that a national epidemic be dared in these areas to identify where a localized response is needed and to enable the local government units to use their Quick Response Fund to address the epidemic situation,” Duque said during a press briefing on Tuesday (Aug 6).

Duque also said the health department along with other government agencies and local government unit will launch “the ‘Sabayang 4 o’clock habit’ para dengue out, focusing on search and destroy in mosquito breeding sites.”

The DOH also reiterated the importance of immediate consultation if an individual experiences dengue symptoms.—AAC (with reports from Aiko Miguel)

Death toll in Nepal floods rises to 55, thousands displaced

Robie de Guzman   •   July 15, 2019

The death toll in Nepal from flash floods and landslides rose to 55 on Sunday (July 14), with dozens missing and injured, the government said.

Ten thousand people have been displaced from their homes as incessant monsoon rains pounded many areas in mostly mountainous Nepal since Thursday (July 11), submerging large areas of land, inundating homes, and destroying bridges and roads across the country.

A Home Ministry statement said 55 people had been confirmed dead and 33 injured, with 30 still missing.

India’s north eastern state of Assam has also been hard hit by the floods brought by the monsoon, with at least 1.5 million people displaced and 10 dead.

In the Chittagong division of Bangladesh there have been 10 deaths and about 500,000 displaced, with 200 villages flooded.

Officials said in some areas rains had eased but rivers in the eastern part of the country were still above flood level.

The Kosi River, which flows into the eastern Indian state of Bihar, was among those that had risen above the flood level.

The Kosi has been a serious concern for both India and Nepal since it broke its banks in 2008 and changed course, submerging large areas of land and affecting more than 2 million people in India’s Bihar state. (REUTERS)

(Production: Emily Cooper)

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