The Daily USA Disaster Situation Report

The Disaster Center, Editor,
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**** ARTICLES ****
=> Article   Army Corps of Engineers releases national report on water resources challenges
=> Article   Assistance To Firefighters Grant Program Update
=> Article  The 1950 eruption of Mauna Loa:  a nightmare that could reoccur
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The Daily USA Disaster Situation Report

The Disaster Center, Editor,
=> USA Daily Temperature Extremes

=> Special Notes

=> Current Active National Weather Service Warnings:
Active Warnings are no longer being provided to see current warning please go to:
U.S. National Weather Service's Active Warning's page

=> Severe Weather Probability Forecast

The forecast probability of an event is by the stated percentage or greater
for the event, within 25 miles of any point for the area described.

Tornado Risk - Slight

Hail Risk - Slight

Wind Risk - Slight

Tomorrow's Risk -

Tomorrow's  Convective Outlook

Day Three's Risk -

=> Precipitation Forecast, Excessive Rainfall, Heavy Snow And/Or Significant
Icing Forecast

Precipitation Forecast
The 24 hour precipitation forecast

The 24 - 48 hour precipitation forecast

Excessive Rainfall Forecast - Today

USA heavy snow and/or significant icing
From noon to midnight today EST

From midnight to noon tomorrow EST

Current USA Snow and Ice Cover

=> USA Flood Report

=> USA NFIC National Daily Fire Situation Report (PDF)

=> USA Earthquake Report
not updated

=> Yesterday's USA Severe Weather Reports

=> Guest Column


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=> Army Corps of Engineers releases national report on water resources challenges

WASHINGTON, May 14, 2001 – Ten major water resources challenge areas facing the nation are the topic of a national report released today from the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers.

The national report documents the results of 16 public “listening sessions” held across the country from June to November 2000.  The listening session forums gathered people of varied interests to identify concerns regarding the nation’s water resources and to clarify the federal role in addressing those concerns.

“The listening sessions were lead by an independent facilitator and attended by a broad cross section of people across the nation with different outlooks on the nation’s water challenges,” said Mark Gmitro, the sessions’ program manager.  “Our role was simply to listen and gather their opinions.  It was very enlightening.”

The national report focuses on the federal role and will be used to make informed procedural and institutional changes within the federal government. It is also being presented to Congress and other decision-makers for consideration.

The 3,400 concerns identified by listening session participants were grouped into 10 general challenges.
Marine transportation system: Transform the marine transportation system to meet 21st century demands.
Restoring and protecting the environment: Restore degraded environment resulting from past development and seek to protect the environment in new development.
Managing watersheds holistically: Achieve balance between social needs, economic development and the environment within an entire watershed.
Floodplain and coastal zone management: Protect Americans from severe storms/natural disasters to minimize social, economic, and environmental impacts.
Responding to disasters: Plan for, prepare for, and respond to emergencies resulting from natural disasters and technological emergencies.
Community water infrastructure:  Consider and plan for the implications of aging water resources infrastructure, urban growth and development, and water supply and treatment on a community’s ability to be prosperous and sustainable.
Regulating dredge and fill activities: Ensure fair, adequate and efficient permitting to protect wetlands and other waters of the U.S. from development and improper use.
Recreation:  Provide recreation opportunities for all Americans and their guests on national lands and waters.
Project processes: Ensure significant communication, information, public input, and analysis for successful project development.
Institutional changes: Streamline and improve federal water resources authorities, laws, policies, and funding to better align the federal government’s priorities, goals, and objectives.

The full national report, executive summary of the national report, and reports from each of the listening sessions are online at:

=> Assistance To Firefighters Grant Program Update

WASHINGTON - More than 9,700 of the nearly 20,000 applications from fire departments across the country have been entered into the Assistance to Firefighters Grant Program database, the Federal Emergency Management Agency and the U.S. Fire Administration (USFA) announced today. Additional staff is expediting the processing and helping to ensure the program's September 30, 2001 deadline for decisions on award recipients is met.

The program's first priority is entering data and processing the applications, using program guidance materials that accompanied the application forms. Confirmation of receipt for individual applications and demographic analysis of the applicants by state, type of fire department, or other characteristics will not be available for several weeks.

In addition to application processing, a test of the grant application peer review evaluation was completed this week. This process will be used when the evaluation panels begin meeting at FEMA's National Emergency Training Center, Emmitsburg, Md. on May 20, 2001. The panels will conduct detailed reviews of the top ranked applications and make recommendations to FEMA and the USFA on the grant awards.

More information on the grant program, including regular updates on the number of applications processed, is available on the USFA web site at

=> Volcano Watch - May 10, 2001 The 1950 eruption of Mauna Loa:  a nightmare that could reoccur

      On the night of June 1, 1950, after many residents of Ho`okena-mauka
village in South Kona had already gone to bed, Mauna Loa began to erupt.
Soon the roar of the lava fountains could be heard from Highway 11, 24 km
(15 mi) away, as molten lava poured from fissures high on the volcano's
southwest rift zone.  In only three hours, an `a`a flow reached the highway
and invaded the village.  The streets were lit by flames as lava consumed
several houses and the post office.  Thirty-five minutes later, the flow
entered the ocean.  By daybreak, lava flows had crossed Highway 11 in two
places, cutting off the only escape route.  The villagers all reached
safety unharmed, but for some it was a close call.

      Mauna Loa has erupted twice since 1950, with a one-day outbreak at
the summit in 1975 and a three-week eruption on the northeast rift zone in
April 1984.

      Most of Mauna Loa's eruptions in the last 150 years began at vents
near the summit.  About half of these summit eruptions quickly developed
into flank eruptions along one of two rift zones that extend down its
northeast and southwest slopes. A few eruptions have also originated at
isolated vents on the volcano's northern slope.

      The 1984 eruption followed the typical pattern, beginning at the
summit and quickly migrating down the northeast rift zone.  Lava flows came
within 6 km (4 mi) of the outskirts of Hilo before the eruption ended.
This eruption paved 41 square kilometers (16 sq mi) of land with lava in
just three weeks, whereas the ongoing eruption of Kilauea that began in
1983 took three years to cover a comparable area.  Fortunately, most of the
property buried by lava in 1984 was uninhabited land owned by the state.

      Eruptions on the southwest rift zone present a much greater threat to
life and property.  The slopes are steep, and residential areas extend from
Highway 11 right up to the rift zone.  Although the population has
increased greatly since 1950, the two-lane highway remains the only escape

      The good news is that our ability to monitor, and possibly forecast,
the next eruption of Mauna Loa has been greatly enhanced by better
instrumentation.  Since 1984, the Hawaiian Volcano Observatory installed
two more seismometers on the southwest rift zone.  In the summer of 2000,
three dilatometers, instruments that measure expansion and compression,
were cemented into boreholes 130 m (425 ft) deep on Mauna Loa's flanks.
      From 1975 through 1983, measurements of ground deformation near Mauna
Loa's summit indicated slow but persistent inflation.  For over a year
prior to the 1984 eruption, the number of earthquakes beneath the summit of
Mauna Loa gradually increased.
      If Mauna Loa follows a similar pattern of deformation and seismicity
before the next eruption, we will have a year or so of warning. Since the
rate of inflation has slowed considerably over the past several years and
the seismicity has not increased, we don't think that the next Mauna Loa
eruption is right around the corner.  But that doesn't mean we can forget
about it.  It means that if we act now, residents and county officials
still have time to prepare for the inevitable.

Fight fire aggressively but provide for safety first.

Initiate all action based on current and expected fire behavior.

Recognize current weather conditions and obtain forecasts.

Ensure that instructions are given and understood.

Obtain current information on fire status.

Remain in communication with crewmembers, your supervisor, and adjoining forces.

Determine safety zones and escape routes.

Establish lookouts in potentially hazardous situations.

Retain control at all times.

Stay alert, keep calm, think clearly, and act decisively.

Fire not scouted and sized up.

In country not seen in daylight.

Safety zones and escape routes not identified.

Unfamiliar with weather and local factors influencing fire behavior

Uninformed on strategy, tactics, and hazards.

Instructions and assignments not clear.

No communication link between crewmembers and

Constructing line without safe anchor point.

Building line downhill with fire below.

Attempting frontal assault on fire.

Unburned fuel between you and the fire.

Cannot see main fire, not in contact with anyone who can.

On a hillside where rolling material can ignite fuel below.

Weather gets hotter and drier.

Wind increases and/or changes direction.

Getting frequent spot fires across line.

Terrain or fuels make escape to safety zones difficult.

Feel like taking a nap near fireline.

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