Saturday, December 05, 2015

Swept away by a mammoth wave near Baltimore, Ireland

This very very tragic news published in  the reports the result of an inquest of the case happened last June as the report starts with:
AN HEROIC father dived into the sea in a doomed bid to save his son and the young man's girlfriend after they were swept away by "a mammoth wave."
and these details
The revelation came as a Cork coroner's inquest heard that Barry John Ryan (51), his son, Barry Davis Ryan (20), and the young man's girlfriend, Niamh O'Connor (20), all drowned off Baltimore last June after an afternoon fishing trip ended in tragedy.
The four went to the eastern section of Beacon Point outside the picturesque west Cork fishing village of Baltimore.  "They were fishing from the rocks when a mammoth wave came in and swept two people from the rocks and into the sea. " 
So this mammoth wave caused the whole tragic very sad happening that started by swept the two younger persons off the rocks where they were fishing and the heroic father followed into the sea trying to rescue.  Seemingly just all ordinary things that ended in so very sad consequences like in this report. Beyond pray, what else can we do?

How can we cope with such ordinary happenings as the hit of a mammoth wave? At this time, unfortunately, there's really nothing much science can do to help! Facing the possibly of a mammoth wave is part of the risk in life, some may be lucky, but others were inevitably being swept off helplessly. 

Sunday, November 29, 2015

Freaque wave happened in Caribbean Thursday night.

A freaque wave happened in the Caribbean Thursday (Nov. 26, 2015) night as reported in the Travel Mole. Here're the details:

Freak wave hits MSC cruise ship

Two cruise passengers suffered minor injuries when a freak wave struck the side of MSC Divina as she sailed in the Caribbean.

The wave hit the side of the ship at 23:40 local time on Thursday, damaging a small cabin porthole.

"One of two Mexican guests staying in the cabin sustained minor abrasions, while an Argentinean guest in another cabin slightly injured a finger when closing a balcony door," said the cruise line.

MSC Divina was sailing from San Juan, Puerto Rico, to Nassau in the Bahamas when the incident happened.

"The safety and wellbeing of guests and crew are MSC Cruises' number one priority, and onboard technicians immediately sealed the damaged porthole," said the cruise line in a statement.

"As a further precaution, MSC Cruises has given alternative cabins to the guests from the affected cabin and those adjacent to it."

MSC Divina remained seaworthy and is continuing her itinerary, it added.
Friday, November 27, 2015
MSC is a Swiss based company. As usual that there's no details info available about the freaque wave other than it was hit at the side of the ship. Thank God for no serious mishaps.

Friday, November 06, 2015

Remembering the Fitz 40 years later

Every year around this time in early November, the Great Lakes area remembers the loss of SS Edmund Fitzgerald on November 10th, 1975. This morning the Detroit News published this article entitled "40 years later, Edmund Fitzgerald remains a mystery" written by Susan R. Pollack, Special to The Detroit News. So it's been 40 years, time flies! I still remember vividly the day after it's happening my colleague Tim Kessenich told me the news about it's happening. That was long before I got interested in rogue waves while we were deeply interested in Great Lakes waves. After that I did some hindcasting study on the possible wave conditions. I presented my study in the Great Lakes conference held in Ann Arbor the next year. As I remember that was the only time in my whole career, I made presentation to a room full of people even with people standing in the back. Hmm I was 40 years young then! The mystery Susan Pollack alluded about is basically what we are still not sure about what was really happened to the Fitz! For me personally as an interested bystander for 40 years I can only cite my favorite lines of Gordon Lightfoot's lyric:  

Does any one know where the love of God goes                                                                   when the waves turn the minutes to hours?   


Monday, November 02, 2015

Was it a freaque wave?

This is a follow-up to the previous post regarding the capsizing of the whale-watching boat. This article in the Province,, by  Jeff Lee of PostMedia News, provided a eyewitness account as told to a rescuer, Frank, who recounted:
“They were saying they were looking at the seals and they saw this real big wave coming, bigger than the rest,” Frank said. “It brought them up and they fell over and just started tumbling, over and over. 
“The next thing they know the boat is full of water and they were all rushing out. The only thing they could see was the life raft, so they all swam for the life raft.”
Now here's a quite good description of wave happening: they can see the wave coming! Clearly there was no time for them to react and prepare when the wave hit them. I have two questions regarding this case: 1). They can see the wave coming, did the wave make any noise? and 2). Is this a freaque wave or just a regular large wave?

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Whale-watching boat tragedy caused by freak wave

This tragic news was reported in  the Guardian as:
A freak wave that struck as sightseers crowded to one side of the top deck caused the sinking of a Canadian whale-watching vessel, killing five Britons and an Australian near Vancouver Island, investigators have said. 
Canada’s transportation safety board said that after questioning some of the 21 survivors, including three crew, it had initially concluded that the Leviathan II sank on Sunday after it was hit by a wave when most of the passengers were gathered on the top deck watching sea lions.
The article was written by Chris McGreal.

This is another one of all the tragic cases that was never expected to, and should not ever have, to happen but unfortunately happened. A most unsettling news is what the coroner disclosed: "none of the five who died had been wearing life jackets, although they were available."

I guess no one can emphasize more strongly this advise to the tourists:
 whenever on board a tourist vessel and there're life jackets available, by all means WEAR it! Your life depends on it!!!
May God bless the lost souls, may they R.I.P

Monday, September 21, 2015

Swept off Lighthouse Pier at Michigan City in Southern Lake Michigan

Here's a news from the Times of NW Indiana:
MICHIGAN CITY | A northern Indiana man's body was recovered Sunday after he was swept off the Lighthouse Pier at Michigan City's Washington Park a day earlier by a large wave, officials said. 
Earl Helmuth, 24, of Napanee, his fiancee and two other Amish couples were taking photos at the end of the Lighthouse Pier about 6:30 p.m. Saturday when a large wave came over the rocks and "knocked them off their feet," said Sgt. Shawn Brown, an Indiana Department of Natural Resources conservation officer. 
The six friends were standing on the middle tier of rocks north of the lighthouse as the waves were crashing in, Brown said. There are pilings but no railings at the end of the pier, which is "pretty open," he said. 
"It was a nice day. The waves were neat, and they were just taking pictures," Brown said.
After the group was swept off the pier, three were able to get out on their own. 
U.S. Coast Guard officers, who happened to be patrolling the creek that goes from Lake Michigan into Michigan City, rescued two others — including a pregnant woman — who were clinging to the concrete wall of the lighthouse. 
The Coast Guard and conservation officers launched a search by water and air for Helmuth, who could not swim, Brown said. Ten-foot waves and treacherous conditions late Saturday forced divers to suspend their underwater search until Sunday, officials said.
Helmuth's body was recovered about 8 a.m. Sunday, shortly after conservation officers divers resumed their search. He was found in 12 feet of water, about 20 feet from where he was last seen, officials said. 
Helmuth and his fiance were planning to marry in October, Brown said. Officials initially said Helmuth lived in Shipshewana. Brown said he was planning to move there, but legal documents still listed a Napanee address. 
As every happenings inevitably reckon with sad, tragic consequences, this one is certainly not an exception. It all started with an excited lighthouse outing and taking some pictures. Disaster is always lurking behind all the seemingly routine activities like taking pictures at the lighthouse. Another swept away by a freaque wave, a young bridegroom with a long productive life ahead -- dashed. God have mercy, RIP!

Thursday, September 17, 2015

Swept off Pearl Beach of Australia, July, 2014

I guess the common sayings that "All news are local" is quite true, especially when it comes to the news of freaque wave encounters.  I just come across another "swept off" to sea case happened in July at the Pearl Beach, New South Wales, Australia.  Another terrible tragic occurrence did not makes into world wide news cycle: A 5 years old  was swept off NSW beach reported on July 12, 2014, massive rescue efforts were eventually called off with no trace of finding the young boy's body. Any one familiar with the area or have seen a picture of the beach there would certainly marvel the beauty and the seemingly tranquil peacefulness of the area that should not expect such a terrible tragedy to happen. Here's a post by the aunt of the lost boy:
"Devastating news for our family today . . .the passing of our nephew Chayce Kofe . . .Where there areno words know the silenceare carrying the thoughts and prayers of all who love you Charyce."

"I will Hold you in my heart forever Charyce . . . Loving you always."

What a tragedy! Time may not heal the loss, a year had passed, little had already back to God's place, but the family's pain of losing him remains forever. May God bless them!

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Rugby coach fell freaque wave victim

This case took place about a month ago as was reported in The full headline reads: Rob Walton: popular rugby coach killed after suffering whiplash when he was hit by freak wave.

Here's the detail story as reported:

A top rugby coach drowned after suffering from whiplash when he was hit by a freak wave on a family holiday. 
Rob Walton, 36, was overwhelmed by the giant wave as he swam off Labenne beach, near Biarritz, on the French west coast. 
The dad-of-four, known to his friends as Yoghurt, was a talented rugby player-turned-coach, who had played alongside future World Cup winners during a spell in New Zealand. 
A French police source said: “He was hit in the spine by a big wave and suffered whiplash injuries.”The spot where Mr Walton drowned is one of the most popular surfing spots in the area, thanks to the waves that roll in from the Atlantic. 
It is believed he was caught in a giant surge of sea water and was spun around before his body was released by the waves.

Very tragic, "hit in the spine by a big wave" and the wave is clearly unexpected is something that should not ever happen but happens more often than recognized. We feel extremely sorry for him,  his friends, and family. May God grant him RIP.

Now can this kind of cases be avoided? Let's hope so!

Thursday, August 27, 2015

Another "swept out to sea" tragedy

Another "swept out to sea" tragedy, this time in Ireland, as this news from  reports:

A man has died after being swept out to sea by a large wave while fishing in Co Waterford. 
The incident occurred on Bunmahon Beach near Dungarvan at approximately 1.45pm on Tuesday.Dublin Coastguard, which co-ordinated the rescue attempt, received a 999 call at 1.50pm from the man’s friend who was also fishing. 
A spokesman for the coastguard said the man was swept out to sea by a large wave before his friend entered the water and attempted to rescue him. 
He was unsuccessful and returned to shore to raise the alarm. 
The spokesman for the coastguard said that because the man had been reportedly in the water for five minutes, the Waterford-based coastguard helicopter was dispatched, along with the RNLI lifeboat and a community rescue boat.
The helicopter crew located the man but he was found to be face down in the water and non-responsive.

How tragic! Perhaps the following comments one should always kept in mind:

The spokesman for the coastguard urged people to remain vigilant of large waves and not to fish in areas that are not frequented by local people. 
“These waves are often described as freak waves,” he said. “One in every seven waves is a large wave - so they’re not freak waves - they’re large waves.”
I am not quite certain what the last comment means!

Saturday, August 22, 2015

Rogue Waves sink Phi Phi cargo ship

Here's a headline from the Phuket Gazette yesterday: Rogue Waves sink Phi Phi cargo ship.

For us outsiders not familiar with geography of Thailand area, Wikipedia has these to say: The Phi Phi Islands are in Thailand, between the largest island of Phuket and the west Strait of Malacca coast of mainland.

Now please check their website for details of what had happened.

In essence, according to the Captain, Mr. Anan, they left in the morning in calm seas, then clearly an unexpected freaque wave, about 3 m high, struck them hard, the boat started to take on water, then another large wave hit it and sunk it.

To a large extent, this is probably a typical case of freaque waves happening with an auspicious ending: Both crew members are being rescued! Thanks be to God!

, where they were being taken care of by Phi Phi National Park officers,” said Lt Col Anurak.

Both men were taken to Phi Phi Hospite received a report from fishermen that they had located the pair and took them to Koh Pai, where they were being taken care of by Phi Phi National Park officers,” said Lt Col Anurak.

Both men were taken to Phi Phi Hospital for treatment, after having been clinging to debris for hours.

“The captain, Mr Anan, said that they departed Krabi at 10am in calm seas. However, a rogue wave, that was about three meters high, struck them hard,” said Mr Anurak.

Tuesday, August 11, 2015

Happened in Labenne in the Landes region of SW France

This latest news item in Mirror is a depressing happening: "British tourist dies after freak wave breaks spine and causes whiplash" as the headline states.
The man was bathing in a supervised swimming area in Labenne in the Landes region in Aquitaine in south-western France. 
 The 36-year-old suffered whiplash which broke his spine, according to authorities.The man was bathing in a supervised swimming area in Labenne in the Landes region in Aquitaine in south-western France.
How terrible!

The article also has this:

Facing the open Atlantic, the 60 miles of Landes beaches are famous for large waves.

The area contains the largest number of surf spots in Europe.

So care should be especially observed in famous tourist places! It is really upsetting to see  a life lost like this. On the other hand, some may regard this to be a romantic way to go. May God bless the victim, RIP.

Thursday, July 23, 2015

Dog rescued from crushing waves by tourist at Honolulu rocky shore

This UK Daily Mail article tells a story of a tourist rescuing a dog that was crushed by large waves at Honolulu China Wall cliff with pictures and a video clip. Here's main story line:

This is the incredible moment a brave tourist rescued a small dog after two powerful waves crashed into it and carried it out to sea

The video and the online pictyures pretty much ca[ptured the whole drama well worth a watching!
Note that it was two large waves, not necessarily freaques.  But are there any differences?

Saturday, July 18, 2015

When a pummeling wave struck

Here's the happening:

A young surfer used her surfboard leg rope as a tourniquet to stop the blood flowing from a gaping fin wound after in a freak accident.
She was bleeding on a deserted Waikato beach at night with no cellphone reception to call for help.
Leah Cameron, a 22-year-old intensive care nurse, was out for a twilight surf off the rugged west coast beach of Ruapuke this week in what started as calm, 3ft conditions, when a pummeling wave struck.
It toppled the surfer, embedding her beloved 5'10" Fish board into the sand and sending the fibreglass fin deep into the surfer's inner left thigh.
"Conditions were perfect, quite small and it was like a freak wave that shut down on me. I ended up in the wrong place, wrong time. It was quite surreal.
The story was published in a few days ago. What I was particularly interested in this report is the new term used -- a pummeling wave struck! I am intrigued! A new way to describe a freaque wave, hmmm, was a pummeling action can be considered as something freaque? Well, why not?

Sunday, July 05, 2015

Hazardous during full moon and high tide!

Here's an interesting article in Irish Times entitled "Coastlines 'hazardous' during full moon and high tides" which I think provides useful information and warning:

When the moon is full and tides are high, the coastline can be a more hazardous location than being out to sea. 
Parts of the Atlantic seaboard are particularly exposed to the swells and surges, rather than freak waves, which are associated with such strong tidal movements, Irish Water Safety (IWS) chief executive John Leech has pointed out. 
While there is a public perception that “offshore” is synonymous with danger, the statistics show that most drownings occur during bathing or walking along coastlines or riverbanks.
It reports these results:
 A 25-year analysis for IWS from 1988 to 2012 found that of some 40 per cent of drowning cases with an identifiable cause, 10 per cent were associated with bathing, and another 10 per cent with walking. 
Some 7 per cent were associated with boating, 6 per cent with commercial fishing, 4 per cent with shore angling and 3 per cent with road traffic incidents.
Ability to swim is no safeguard in certain circumstances and the majority of drownings here still occur on inland waterways, the report found.
And their concluding advise that people should always wear a life-jacket and maintain a safe distance from the water's edge is certainly well taken and should be be observed by all. Anyway watch out for the hazards during full moon and high tides!

Saturday, July 04, 2015

Whither freaque waves?

With Google taking over the Blogger system and turned it around to something I no longer recognize, I am having trouble access my blog now a days. Nothing is forever, may be Freaque Waves blog has ran long enough with a good showing. I don't know how long I can still keep it up like the good old days. I like to thank readers and followers of this blog sincerely, I hope I can continue, but what ever will be will be. A sad lesson to learn in this life is what I just said: Nothing is forever!

Saturday, June 20, 2015

Did the disciples encountered a freaque wave?

The Gospel reading today:

Jesus Calms the Storm

(Matthew 8:23-27

Then he got into the boat and his disciples followed him. Suddenly a furious storm came up on the lake, so that the waves swept over the boat. But Jesus was sleeping. The disciples went and woke him, saying, “Lord, save us! We’re going to drown!”
He replied, “You of little faith, why are you so afraid?” Then he got up and rebuked the winds and the waves, and it was completely calm.
The men were amazed and asked, “What kind of man is this? Even the winds and the waves obey him!”
(Mark 4:35-41)
On that day, when evening had come, Jesus said to the disciples, "Let us go across to the other side." And leaving the crowd behind, they took him with them in the boat, just as he was. Other boats were with him. A great windstorm arose, and the waves beat into the boat, so that the boat was already being swamped. But he was in the stern, asleep on the cushion; and they woke him up and said to him, "Teacher, do you not care that we are perishing?" He woke up and rebuked the wind, and said to the sea, "Peace! Be still!" Then the wind ceased, and there was a dead calm. He said to them, "Why are you afraid? Have you still no faith?" And they were filled with great awe and said to one another, "Who then is this, that even the wind and the sea obey him?" 
So freaque waves had happened in the biblical time 2000 years ago. Now an interesting question would be: Did the disciples encountered a freaque wave or waves in that instance?  I don't think anyone can affirmatively provide an answer to this question.  The only thing that I can surmise is that if the instance happens somewhere in US today, one or two things might happen: (1) US main stream media will probably not going to report it, because Jesus is politically incorrect, and (2) if it become known by local people and Coast Guards and may be some journalists, in their general discussions on the case the term will most likely to bring up ( without mentioning the "Peace! Be still!"! of course!

Tuesday, June 09, 2015

A dog lost to Sea in New Zealand.

Here's a report from New Zealand:

A witness spotted a Jack Russell swimming for its life while being battered by massive waves off Dunedin.
People continue to comb the beaches between St Clair and St Kilda after the 15-year-old dog disappeared in heavy seas at about 2pm on Sunday.
Graeme Newton said he was walking in the area when he saw a woman on the beach, which was hit hard by heavy waves, "and I thought what the bloody hell is she doing?".
Later he spotted a dog in the water, "and it was getting hit by the white water again and again".
"I saw the dog trying to swim towards St Clair and I thought, 'good luck to it'."
He estimated the dog had been in the water for 10 minutes and later lost sight of it.
Those same waves had earlier brought down a large sand dune, "and just scoured huge chunks off".
He later scrambled around a slip to talk to the woman, who was obviously upset.
"I went up to her and said 'are you missing a dog'."
"She asked me if I had seen it and I said 'yes, but you are not going to like the outcome'."
The Otago Peninsula resident told him she had been on a dune when it gave way.
Another witness Anthony Legg also talked to the "distraught lady", later helping search for her dog.
He said the track [between the beaches] needed better signage from both ends to prevent people walking in the area, "because it could have been a kid who got washed away".
The track was clearly signposted from the southern end of St Clair beach.
Dunedin City councillor Andrew Whiley said the council was aware of the incident.
Contractors were repairing the area, he said. 
O.K. the story here is a dog was swept out by a freaque wave and did not survive on a beach that was hit hard by large waves. Was that a freaque wave?  That's not easy to say. So this may or may not be a freaque wave story.

Tuesday, June 02, 2015

Queen Mary's 1942 encounter revisited

I came across a reading material from Milwaukie High School entitled "Swallowers of Ships" with this description:
 1942: The clouds of war seem at their darkest for America and her allies against
Hitler's awesome Nazi military machine. Allied hopes hang on the slim thread of ship convoys
moving across the North Atlantic from the United States to Britain.

 Nazi U-boats constantly threaten Allied shipping. But in the late winter of 1942, Atlantic
storms are more menacing than anything the enemy can throw at the convoys.

 On this particular day, the English coast is wracked by a vicious gale. Some 700 miles
westward, the 81,237 ton liner Queen Mary labors through the storm toward England. On
board are 15,000 American soldiers. The majestic liner pounds her way through an
unrelenting train of 20 and 30 foot waves. Her captain and crew are grimly determined. They
have weathered North Atlantic storms as fierce as this before.

 Suddenly the sea seems to drop away alongside the Queen Mary. She is drawn into
the deep trough of a giant wave coming at her broadside. Looking up, the men on the bridge
cannot believe their eyes. Although they are located high above the ship's waterline, the
mountainous wave rises so high they cannot see its top. As the mass of water comes down
on them, its crest tears away in an avalanche of sea. The upper decks are under water. The
greater liner lists to one side. She is within inches of capsizing!

 At the time the London newspaper The Daily Mail reported: "...those who had sailed in
her since she first took to sea were convinced she never would right herself. Her safety
depended on no more than five degrees. Had she gone those inches farther to port, the
Queen Mary would have been no more."

 Miraculously the Queen Mary did not go under. A disaster worse than that of the
Titanic was narrowly avoided. Yet many ships since then have encountered giant waves and
have not been so lucky.
 Liner Queen Mary encountered a freaque wave is well known and legendary, but I never really noticed these much details ever given elsewhere as those reported here, especially that what they encountered was a deep trough! That's not something well known to my knowledge. Yes, deep trough is an integral part of freaque waves. Not all freaque waves are of Draupner type! That's something people may have difficulty to comprehend especially those nonlinear physicists thinking ocean freaque waves can be solved in optics!!

As a matter of fact, Dr. Al Beeton, our former beloved Director of GLERL also encountered a deep trough in Lake Michigan in the mid 1950's when he was a young scientist, piloting a small research vessel in eastern Lake Michigan near Luddington, Michigan when all of a sudden a deep trough appeared in front of his route and his boat just dropped into it. Fortunately no disaster ensued, so he can told me all the details about the encounter years latter. That's some valuable life's experience not many can expect to have and surviving a freaque wave encounter can not be appropriately and prominently listed as a life's accomplishment  -- but it WAS!  I really appreciate when Al learned about my interest in study freaque waves then eagerly told me all about it. Thanks, Al!

Wednesday, May 27, 2015

Waves at Game of Thrones set

I just noticed this Euronews news item that was happened ndwhich somehow I missed when it happened at a Maltese island in February of this year with this following picture:

There's also an interesting video attached to the article that makes it well worth to pay a visit. As a matter of fact, watching those videos convince me that it is sufficient to look at the videos to appreciate the power of those waves. One might even question: which one is the real freaque wave?


Thursday, May 21, 2015

Sweeps off cliff's edge

This news happened in Ireland's Aran Islands as reported in Good Morning America on April 15, 2015. The incredible video below the report is a must watch. You have to watch it to believe what sweeps off cliff's edge is about and how lucky was that the rescue over a real freaque wave encounter took place!  Here's the story:
A woman visiting Ireland’s Aran Islands was saved by a young couple after a giant wave knocked her off a cliff and into the sea.
Apu Gupta, 21, from London, was taking video from the cliff’s edge last week when she was knocked 40 feet down onto rocks by the wave.
“I tried to run, but it pushed me straight down. It was like being in a waterfall and that probably cushioned the fall,” Gupta told the Irish Times. “I was so scared because I thought the wave was going to come again.”
“My ankle was completely smashed and the pain was bad,” Gupta, who was visiting the islands with her mom, told the newspaper.
Two other tourists visiting the island saw Gupta’s fall and immediately sprang into action, according to the Times.
“We could see her almost being swept out to sea, so I took out my phone to dial 999 but there was no reception,” Seamus McCarthy, a paramedic, told the newspaper.
The other tourist, identified by the Times as Fionnuala Quigley, a teacher, ran to the nearest house to get help. The pair, by now aided by others, fashioned a rope out of a jacket and a backpack and lowered it down to Gupta.
Gupta tightened the backpack around her waist while her rescuers pulled her up the cliff to safety.
We have to believe that somehow God's hand is right there handling the whole thing!

Thursday, March 12, 2015


This is the picture I captured from a newspaper article showing am coastal freaque wave in action. I have since lost the article connection, just this picture to marvel for now. I'll finish it if I can find the article! 

Wednesday, February 25, 2015

ThunderSnow and Lightning

Hmmm. . .  "thundersnow" is a new term for me just noticed from this article in entitled "THUNDERSNOW and Lightning very very frightening!"

STORM-HIT Britain was last night lashed by 50ft super-tides as 80mph winds and thundersnow battered the nation.
Massive waves clattered coastal towns while the screaming gales caused chaos across the UK.
The “weatherbomb” resulted in tragedy as one man was swept to his death off the seafront at Scarborough, North Yorks.
A freak wave dragged the man in his 30s into the water as he walked his dog along the seafront – despite desperate attempts by his pal to pull him to safety.
The friend was left clinging to the sea wall as a monster wave whipped up by gale force winds crashed against him. The other man was recovered unconscious from the water about 40 minutes later, but died in hospital.
More than 100 flood warnings were in place across the country yesterday with gales, lightning, thunder and snowstorms due overnight and into this morning.
Forecasters at The Weather Network warned of “further spells of wet and windy weather and snow on the higher ground”.
Meanwhile thundersnow – a rare phenomenon combining lightning with snow flurries – pelted down in western Scotland and Northern Ireland yesterday.
And there was road chaos in the Lake District as drivers lost control in treacherous conditions.
One incident saw two people cut out of a car after it ended up on its roof after a “number of collisions”, on one dangerous stretch. Volunteers from Langdale and Ambleside Mountain rescue service cared for the pair until ambulances arrived.
Leon Brown, forecaster at The Weather Channel UK, said another cold front will smash into the UK on Thursday, just in time for the weekend.
Good to noticed this article from the internet. It may be too much to expect US' reporters to understand that there's a whole wide world out there outside of Washington D.C., Whitehouse and Hollywood cesspool. This article reported a tragic case, being rescued is still not enough, so sad!
I must admit that I have never heard of thundersnow during lightning with snow flurries, it is frightening!  Nature seems never tired of surprising us mortal humans!

The deadliest wave on the planet

When one sees a title like "THE DEADLIEST WAVES ON THE PLANET" it most certainly screams for a click! It's an article from Sydney, Australia's Daily Telegraph, an article about surfer and surfing waves. The title may have succeeded  in generating shock feelings. But it's a compilation of world's dangerous surfing sites according to surfers.  Click it and be enlightened or entertained!

Saturday, February 21, 2015

A video of freaque wave in action

Now here's an interesting News Video Segment from Australia's 9News that you can only feel it by watching it! What had happened was the real thing, may be you have to be right there at the right time to catch it.  Though the write-up says she can choose to run away. I doubt she had enough time really to get away. If you truly wish to avoid it, you have to be ran away much sooner. Luckily they just only got wet. If the power was somewhat larger they may not be showing us this demonstration. Anyway, that's the real life wave -- freaque wave -- in action. It's real you can't make it up!

Sunday, February 15, 2015

Happy-ending story on Happy Valentine's day at Whirinaki Beach

Here's a heart warming happy-ending story published in yesterday's New Zealand Hearld written by Harrison Christian.  The article starts with this picture that everyone's rightfully smiling.  

HEROES: Rescuers David (left), Rex and Lisa Bateman with Matilda Kersjes and her father, Alex Kersjes, who were rescued from the surf at Whirinaki Beach, north of Napier, last Saturday.PHOTO/DUNCAN BROWN

It is also a well-written story that needs to be read in full to appreciate what was happening. Here's the whole story:
Little Matilda Kersjes was standing in ankle-deep water when a rogue wave dragged her 20m out to sea.
Her father, Alex Kersjes, ran fully clothed into the surf and battled through the breakers to reach his 7-year-old daughter.
"We'd been collecting seashells on the shoreline," he said of the freak incident at Whirinaki Beach last Saturday.
"A wave knocked her over. This massive set just suddenly started coming in. The waves were rapid and they were big. The next thing I knew she was about 20m out there."
The Havelock North businessman left his three young sons on the beach and managed to swim out to Matilda.
"The first thing she said to me when I got to her was, 'Thank you, Daddy'. It's a moment I'll never forget."
But as he held Matilda above the water, he realised he was not going to make it back to the beach under his own steam.
"I had one free hand to negotiate the swell, it just wasn't working. [When the waves hit] I was in a line-out position to keep her above the water."
After treading water in the choppy seas for about 10 minutes, he saw two quad bikes driving along the beach.
It was Whirinaki local David Bateman and his family, going for an afternoon ride.
Mr Bateman said he did not see Mr Kersjes and his daughter at first, but stopped because he noticed the Kersjes boys unattended.
"We were asking them, 'Where's your Dad'? It turned out he was out there with his child beyond the breakers."
He jumped off his quad bike, ripped off his hat, shirt and glasses and dived into the water.
"I thought, 'I don't even know if I can make it to him', but then I thought, 'Just do it. It's a job - go and do your job'."
He had reached Mr Kersjes and grabbed hold of him. "I put my hand through his singlet. I said, 'Get on your back and kick'."
As they fought towards shore, a set of waves picked them up and dumped them in shallow water, but the only thing that stopped them being pulled out again was a 5m rope, thrown at them by David's brother, Rex Bateman.
A large wave caused Rex to fall over, injuring his knee. It also swept David's wife, Lisa, off her feet.
"What saved us is Alex grabbed the rope and my wife grabbed his daughter. I felt myself getting dragged back out. I thought, 'I won't make it back in, I haven't got the strength'.
"Then I saw Alex's ankle and I grabbed on to it."
The three exhausted swimmers clambered on to dry land. Soon after, Mr Kersjes collapsed and was taken to Hawke's Bay Hospital. He had swallowed a lot of sea water but has since made a full recovery.
Everyone involved is still coming to terms with the incident.
Rex is nursing his knee and David is having a break from work this week.
"[Alex] could have died. He was quite close," he said. "And quite frankly, I was very close, too. I didn't know if I was coming back in."
He has lived at Whirinaki for a year and wanted to stress it was "not a dangerous beach".
"You've just got to be wary. It's a steep beach, you go out 3m and you go from ankle to neck."
Mr Kersjes, too, was taking a step back.
"Even this morning in the shower I had a moment of panic at what could have been, and what nearly was. It's going to take some time."
He had since travelled back to Whirinaki to thank his rescuers, whom he described as "beyond heroic".
"The kindness of them just to stop because they saw unattended children - I'm forever thankful they were as selfless as they were."

One can clearly read in this story with God's hand and His angels are busy at work even they are not part of the casts. That part of the story that's truly of interest to this blog is the first sentence: "Little Matilda Kersjes was standing in ankle-deep water when a rogue wave dragged her 20m out to sea."  Even though there's not much more description as usual about the villain waves that's enough there to convince us that it was really a freaque wave occurred in the ankle-deep water that started the whole event. We thank God for the happy ending story reported on a Happy Valentine's day! (Do they celebrate St. Valentine's Day in New Zealand?)

Monday, January 19, 2015

Big wave hits lighthouse

The above picture is from last Thursday's South China Morning Post with the headline
"Typhoon Neoguri threatens cities on Japan's central islands"
but this AP picture has an caption as "A big wave hits a lighthouse off Jeju in South Korea."  Whatever it is, this is a fascinate picture of a large wave engulfing the lighthouse -- not an everyday happening thing! Here's some from the article:

A strong typhoon swerved towards Japan's heavily populated central islands yesterday after it slammed through Okinawa, dumping heavy rain, knocking out power and injuring at least 30 people.
Typhoon Neoguri left toppled trees, flooded cars and bent railings on the island chain, which experienced its heaviest rainfall in a half century, according to the Okinawa government.

I did not even paying attention to the typhoon yet. Aside from the news part I found this from the article of interest:
Neoguri, which means "raccoon dog" in Korean, was moving northwards at 15km/h packing sustained winds of 108km/h by evening, the Japan Meteorological Agency said.
Hmm, raccoon dog, I wonder what do they translate the term in Chinese?

Monday, January 05, 2015

Cargo ship Cemfjord in Pentland Firth

This following picture is from the Press and Journal of UK reporting the case near Scotland coast with the headline: "Capsized cargo ship could have been hit by a ‘rogue wave’"

Here's what had happened:

Rescue efforts to find the eight-strong crew of a huge cargo ship lost off the north coast of Scotland were stood down last night with no sign of survivors. 
The Cemfjord sank in the Pentland Firth, just hours after its upturned hull was spotted in the water by a passing ferry.
One theory is that the boat, which was carrying thousands of tonnes of cement, may have been hit by a “rogue wave” as the area was battered by high winds. 
Rescuers spoke of difficult weather conditions in the Pentland Firth on Friday when the Cemfjord was last seen.
Very depressing to hear that there's no survivors yet. And here's some more:

Mystery surrounds the final moments of the vessel, which did not issue a mayday when it got into difficulty. 
The last recording by marine tracking devices was at 1.15pm on Friday when it was detected between the islands of Stroma and Swona, drifting at 5.2 knots, roughly 6 mph.
The Cypriot-registered cargo vessel left Aalborg in Denmark on December 30 and was heading for Runcorn, Cheshire, with a cargo of 2,000 tonnes of cement.
It was due to arrive at its destination on January 5, however, the upturned hull was spotted 11 miles off the Pentland Skerries on Saturday afternoon by the NorthLink ferry, MV Hrossey, which was heading to Aberdeen from Shetland with 241 passengers on board. 
A search was launched but failed to find any trace of the eight crew, including seven Polish members and one Filipino.
Finally this:

Wick Lifeboat coxswain Ian Cormack said: “We have exhausted all the possibilities and we are running out of places to look. 
“We searched from Wick up to Duncansby Head, all around the Pentland Skerries and then on South Ronaldsay to Grim Ness, but there’s just nothing.” 
Mr Cormack said it was unusual that the Cemfjord’s emergency positioning indicating radio beacon had not activated. The device is meant to transmit the vessel’s position to emergency services. 
He added: “It all points to a sudden catastrophic event. All I can think is that they were hit by a rogue wave.” 
He said there had been 60-70mph gusts in the firth on Friday, and that in windy conditions standing waves could be created by ebb tides in a phenomenon known as the Merry Men of Mey. 
Mr Cormack said: “It’s all supposition but they could have been hit by a freak wave which turned them. 
“It must have been massive.”

Remembering a huge 'rogue' wave

This very intriguing news item is from the Eureka Times-Standard with an equally intriguing headline: "Remembering a huge 'rogue' wave"!
that was posted yesterday. This headline is actually the title of an event commemorating an event happened 100 years ago:
The Trinidad Head Lighthouse is shown here perched high up on Trinidad Head. In late 1914 and early 1915, Lighthouse Keeper Fred L. Harrington witnessed a massive wave that washed over Pilot Rock to the south and crashed into Trinidad Head, jarring the lens out of alignment. The Bureau of Land Management is partnering with the city of Trinidad, Trinidad Rancheria, Cher-Ae Heights Casino and the Trinidad Museum Society to host an event at the lighthouse on Jan. 10 from 2-5 p.m. to commemorate the 100th anniversary of the wave. The event is free of charge, and a shuttle will run hourly from the Seascape Restaurant to the lighthouse. For more information, call the BLM’s Arcata Field Office at 707-825-2313. Photo courtesy of the Bureau of Land Management
The article was written by Caly McGlaughlin.

This light house is one located in a spectacular location but not itself a spectacular building as one might expect. As McGlaughlin tells:
But 100 years ago, another type of weather extreme was battering the North Coast, as a “massive storm blew gale-force winds over this area for about two weeks” in 1914-15, according to Bureau of Land Management Interpretive Specialist Leisyka Parrott. Based on reports from the time, the storm caused a “200-foot wave that shook the Trinidad Head Lighthouse,” disturbing the lens and making life difficult for lighthouse keeper Fred L. Harrington and his wife, Josephine.
So they are going to have this special event to remembering this event! Since the main witnesses of this event are the lighthouse keeper and his wife, they no longer around, there was a newspaper interview as :

Firsthand account
According to an interview with Harrington published in a newspaper shortly after the event, “The storm commenced on Dec. 28, 1914, blowing a gale that night. The gale continued for a whole week and was accompanied by a very heavy sea from the southwest. On the 30th and 31st, the sea increased and at 3 p.m. on the 31st seemed to have reached its height, when it washed a number of times over (93-foot-high) Pilot Rock, a half mile south of the head.
“At 4:40 p.m., I was in the tower and had just set the lens in operation and turned to wipe the lantern room windows when I observed a sea of unusual height, then about 200 yards distant, approaching. I watched it as it came in. When it struck the bluff, the jar was very heavy, and the sea shot up to the face of the bluff and over it, until the solid sea seemed to me to be on a level with where I stood in the lantern,” Harrington said.
“Then it commenced to recede and the spray went 25 feet or more higher. The sea itself fell over onto the top of the bluff and struck the tower on about a level with the balcony, making a terrible jar. The whole point between the tower and the bluff was buried in water. The lens immediately stopped revolving and the tower was shivering from the impact for several seconds. Whether the lens was thrown off level by the jar on the bluff, or the sea striking the tower, I could not say. Either one would have been enough. However, I had it leveled and running in half an hour.
“About an hour later another sea threw spray up on the level of the bluff, and the constant jars of the heavy sea was much over normal during the night and the whole of the next day. On the 3rd, the sea moderated to some extent, but a strong southeast wind and high sea continued until the 5th. During the 26 years that I have been stationed here, there has at no time been a sea of any such size as that of the 31st experienced here: but once during that time have I known the spray to come onto the bluff in front of the tower, and but twice have I seen sea or spray go over Pilot Rock,” said Harrington.

What an event! Too bad I can't make it to Trinidad now, I would love to hear about all the remembrances! Look at the picture of the bluff where the lighthouse locates, there had to be much more than a "huge" wave to be able to get to that high. Yes, incredible it may seem, it DID happened!