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Threat of powerful eruption at Kuchinoerabu volcano prompts evacuations, Japan
The Japan Meteorological Agency raised the alert level for the Kuchinoerabu volcano in Kagoshima Prefecture from 2 to second highest level of 4 at 01:30 UTC (10:30 JST) on Wednesday, August 15, 2018. This volcano is located on the Kuchinoerabu Island in southwestern Japan, some 1 000 km (620 miles) SW of Tokyo. Its last eruption took place in 2015. The decision to raise the alert was made due to 26 volcanic earthquakes detected within just a few hours. The largest was M1.9 at a depth of 5 km (3.1 miles) in almost the same location as a similar pre-eruption quake that struck 3 years ago. JMA warned that eruption could be powerful enough to cause serious damage to the island's residential area. Level 4 alert means that elderly and disabled people should be evacuated and everyone else should prepare to evacuate. This is the first such warning for this volcano since May 2015 when a powerful eruption forced …

State of emergency in Paraguay's capital Asunción after floods leave 20,000 homeless

State of emergency in Paraguay's capital Asunción after floods leave 20 000 homeless

A state of emergency was declared in Paraguay's capital Asunción on Wednesday, January 24, 2018, after Paraguay River burst its banks, leaving at least 20 000 people homeless.
The river levels grew 2 cm (0.8 inches) on Wednesday and reached 5.72 m (18.7 feet), 22 cm (5.66 inches) over the critical level, but floods caused by it have been affecting the region for more than a week. Emergency Management Director Victor Hugo Julio told EFE that if the rains continue, the river will rise to 6 meters (19.7 feet).
Nearly 15 000 people, according to the most recent reports, were evacuated to shelters that are insufficient in number and others are on their own, occupying public places where they erect small precarious improvised temporary shelters, local media reports.
According to the General Direction of Meteorology, there is a tendency of slow and permanent rise of the Paraguay River due to heavy rainfall over the last few weeks and more rain in the forecast.
The most recent storm came in over northern Argentina and dumped 480 mm (18.9 inches) of rain over the past 5 days, affecting more than 50 000 people in the neighboring Argentinean Chaco region, and adding more rain to already swollen Parana and Paraguay rivers.
Featured image: Floods in Asuncion, Paraguay - January 2018. Credit: AFP

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