This week started out with Russia receiving heavy rains, causing flooding and mudslides. The affected city of Sochi is the site of the 2014 Winter Olympic Games, mere months away. No injuries or fatalities have been reported, but having seen first hand the potential devastation of floods, it looks like Sochi will be cleaning up for a long time, and the damage could exceed several million or even billions of dollars. Unfortunately, several provinces in Thailand were not so lucky. The flooding there has claimed the lives of nine people across 29 provinces in Thailand and damaged numerous bridges, roads, and farmers’ fields. Typhoon Wutip has left at least three people dead in Vietnam, and killed at least two fishermen in China. The Chinese navy is still searching for another 58 fishermen. The same storm killed six people, all swept away in their car, in Cambodia.
In Namibia, the population is suffering from an extended drought, decimating citizens and livestock. The drought there is raising fears about more widespread desertification. President Hifikepunye Pohamba fingers climate change as the cause for the drought and the famine that may follow on its heels
In other news, a storm usually encountered in late fall or early winter dumped record rainfall on the Pacific Northwest and even spawned an EF1 tornado near Seattle. The tornado had sustained wind speeds of over 86 mph (138 km/h), peaking at 110 mph (177 km/h).
To see all of last week’s events in detail, click here.