Hurricane Frances strengthens to a Category 3, but it's too early for predictions
By KEN KAYE
Posted August 27 2004, 4:50 PM EDT
MIAMI -- The long-range forecast calls for Hurricane Frances, which grew into a 115-mph category-three storm Friday afternoon, to build into a major system. Then it could aim directly at South Florida.
But considering it's about 2,000 miles and at least a week away, "it's a little too early to worry," said hurricane specialist Jack Beven of the National Hurricane Center in Miami-Dade County.
The hurricane center said additional strengthening is expected in the next 24 hours and Frances could become a category four hurricane over the weekend.
"It's a long ways away," Beven said. "Storms in this position have been known to go to a great variety of places. Some have gone into the Caribbean; some have gone north toward New England. We've even had some that turn and go back out to sea."
Forecasters expect it to slow down and intensify over the next three days, with winds greater than 120 mph.
Meanwhile, the National Weather Service in Miami said Friday afternoon that a well-defined low-pressure system southeast of Charleston, S.C., has become better organized and became Tropical Depression 7. Storm alerts will be issued for portions of the Georgia and South Carolina coastlines and possibly North Carolina. The depression is moving west.
Frances is the fourth hurricane of the 2004 Atlantic season, which already has seen two major hurricanes in Alex, which brushed North Carolina's Outer Banks Aug. 3, and Charley, which hit Florida's Gulf Coast Aug. 13.
For now, a ridge of high pressure called the Bermuda High is keeping the storm on its westerly path, Beven said. Forecasters said that ridge might weaken and allow the storm to turn more to the north, which would reduce the risk to the Florida coastline.
Meanwhile, Beven said, "the Lesser Antilles are definitely not off hook for this storm."
Under the hurricane center's five-day forecast, Frances is expected to be about 400 miles northwest of Puerto Rico Tuesday morning.
Under a worst-case scenario, at its current forward speed, Frances would approach South Florida a week from Saturday or Sunday.
Beven said it would be another three to four days before it is known whether the U.S. coastline actually is a potential target. In the meantime, residents should monitor the storm's progress, he said.
Frances is the sixth named storm of the 2004 Atlantic hurricane season, which runs from June 1 to Nov. 30.
Staff Writer Ken Kaye can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org or 954-385-7911.
Friday, August 27, 2004
Wednesday, August 18, 2004
Friday, August 13, 2004
Category 4 Charley Slams Fla. Mainland
Category 4 Charley Slams Fla. Mainland at Charlotte Harbor; Gov. Bush Says Damage May Top $15B
The Associated Press
PUNTA GORDA, Fla. Aug. 13, 2004 Â? A stronger-than-expected Hurricane Charley roared ashore Friday as a dangerous Category 4 storm, pounding the heavily populated Gulf Coast with 145 mph wind and towering surges of water expected to swallow up miles of shoreline.
Airports and theme parks hurriedly closed and storm shelters quickly filled up as nearly 2 million people were told to flee ahead of the strongest storm to hit Florida in a decade. Gov. Jeb Bush estimated that damage could exceed $15 billion.
Charley's eye reached land at 3:45 p.m. EDT when it passed over the barrier islands between Fort Myers and Punta Gorda, some 70 miles southeast of the Tampa Bay area. It struck the mainland 30 minutes later.
"We are ground zero for Hurricane Charley," said Wayne Sallade, director of emergency management in Charlotte County.
By 4 p.m., it was centered about 20 miles west-northwest of Fort Myers, according to the National Hurricane Center. Wind of at least 74 mph extended outward 30 miles from the eye. The National Weather Service issued tornado warnings for parts of the region.
Charley was expected to slice north through the state, with 6.5 million of Florida's 17 million residents in the projected path. Four to 8 inches of rain was possible.
The hurricane was initially expected to strike as a Category 2 storm, but was upgraded as it approached the coast. Sallade lashed out at forecasters because authorities learned so late that Charley was a Category 4.
"This magnitude storm was never predicted," he said. "(Forecasters) told us for years they don't forecast hurricane intensity well and unfortunately, we know that now."
Residents who had not left were told to stay home or head to shelters, and even the Charlotte County emergency operation center was evacuated as a precaution. The wind snapped pine trees in half, and offshore the gulf churned like water in a washing machine.
"When the ocean decides to meet my bay, that's a lot of water. It's already in my pool," said Lucy Hunter, the hotel operator at the Pink Shell Beach Resort and Spa.
Six resort employees, including Hunter's husband, hunkered down in a room in the hotel's center. "Every now and then you hear a big whistle, but the noise isn't bad," Hunter said before the phone line went dead.
Charley had been expected to hit shore near the Tampa-St. Petersburg area but veered toward the northeast before making landfall.
That change wasn't enough to make Sarasota County Emergency Management Chief Gregg Feagans relax. "As long as this thing still has a name, it's like sleeping with rattlesnakes," he said.
Earlier, as it blew through the Caribbean, Charley had been blamed for at least four deaths, three in Cuba and one in Jamaica.
The evacuation rivaled the largest in state history, and Bush urged people in the storm's projected path to keep off highways and roads. He declared a state of emergency and asked his brother, President Bush, to declare a federal state of emergency.
The storm was almost on par with Hurricane Andrew, which smashed into South Florida in 1992 with 165 mph wind, killed 43 people and caused $31 billion in damage.
Hurricane warnings were posted along Florida's west coast and along the Atlantic Coast from Cocoa Beach, just south of Cape Canaveral, all the way to South Carolina.
The storm even affected the nerve center of the war in Iraq, MacDill Air Force Base, where residents evacuated and only essential personnel remained.
On the state's Atlantic coast, 10 Navy ships from Mayport Naval Station near Jacksonville were sent out to sea to avoid damage from the storm, the Navy said Friday.
About 1,000 Florida National Guard members had been activated and more were likely.
At Cape Canaveral, traffic was bumper-to-bumper at noon as Kennedy Space Center employees left work early. All but a skeleton crew of 200 of the nearly 13,000-person work force was sent home, or told to stay home, and the space shuttle hangars and the massive Vehicle Assembly Building were sealed tight.
In Orlando, theme parks Walt Disney World, Universal Orlando and SeaWorld Orlando, closed in the early afternoon and Disney's Animal Kingdom didn't open at all. The only previous time that the parks closed for a hurricane was in 1999 for Floyd. Guests remaining at hotels were to urged to stay in their rooms.
Amtrak canceled long-distance service between Miami and New York for Saturday, and trains coming from Los Angeles will stop in New Orleans instead of continuing on to Orlando.
The barrier island of Sanibel, home to 6,000 people, is known for the hundreds of types of seashells that hide just beneath the sand's surface, and the posture associated with bending over to hunt them is known as the "Sanibel Stoop." An annual shell fair is attended by thousands, and a museum is devoted to the hobby.
Earlier Friday, the heart of storm slid to the west of Key West, sparing the Florida Keys. Charley hit the lower Keys with occasionally heavy rain and gusts of 58 mph but officials reported only minor damage.
If it remained at its current strength, Charley would be the strongest hurricane to hit Florida since the Category 5 Andrew hit south of Miami in 1992. Hurricane Mitch, which stalled over Honduras in 1998, also was Category 5 with sustained wind over 155 mph. Mitch killed some 10,000 people in Central America.
Associated Press writers Mark Long in Fort Myers, Ken Thomas in Key West and Vickie Chachere in Sarasota contributed to this report.
On the Net:
National Hurricane Center:
Saturday, August 07, 2004
Soaring UFO Sightings Reaching Record High
From a translucent, saucer-shaped object in British Columbia to mysterious lights buzzing motorists in New Brunswick, we are on our way to a record number of UFO sightings this year.
Also see: A Novel of End Times Disclosure
Mysterious lights, dazzling mid-air manoeuvres reported. More than 400 encounters of the curious kind filed so far this year
OTTAWAÂ?From a translucent, saucer-shaped object in British Columbia to mysterious lights buzzing motorists in New Brunswick, Canadians are on their way to reporting a record number of UFO sightings this year.
More than 400 stories of curious encounters were filed through the end of July, compared with just over 300 by this time last year, says Ufology Research of Manitoba, a group that tracks reports of unidentified flying objects.
At this rate, the total for 2004 will surpass the current record of 673 sightings reported last year, said Chris Rutkowski, research co-ordinator for the Winnipeg-based organization.
The group receives reports directly by telephone and e-mail from sister agencies that follow the phenomenon, and via federal departments such as transport and national defence.
Rutkowski isn't sure why the numbers are rising, but suspects it might be linked to public awareness of recent exploratory missions to planets such as Mars and Saturn.
"I think there is a resurgence of interest in space," he said yesterday.
Dazzling mid-air manoeuvres were a feature of some of the more dramatic otherworldly episodes.
At a military base in Beaverbank, N.S., on April 23, three people spotted several lights in the east, including a slow-moving red one bobbing up and down. Suddenly, a second red light swooped in, prompting the first one to climb upwards and fly over it.
In a July 5 incident, a Rosemont, Que., couple saw a very bright red light moving slowly westward. Travelling much too low to be an airplane or helicopter, the object plunged to the ground and disappeared after about a minute.
Two people sitting on a hill in an Edmonton park on June 23 watched four distinct lights hover above them.
"At first they thought it was some sort of satellite," Rutkowski said. "But then the lights gathered together, close in the sky, and spread out again. They would travel in one direction for a while and then curve back in a very sharp turn in another direction. And they watched it for 90 minutes."
The Prairies seem to be a hotbed of unexplained activity.
In Alberta, 61 sightings occurred up to the end of July, compared with 76 in all of last year. There were 50 in Manitoba, already double the total for 2003, while 19 reports emerged from Saskatchewan, topping last year's 13.
In a widely reported incident, the pilot of Prime Minister Paul Martin's plane reported seeing a "very bright light" falling through the air, with smoke trailing, while the aircraft passed over Suffield, Alta., on March 21.
Rutkowski believes that while most UFO reports have simple explanations Â? many being meteors Â? a small percentage are puzzling and deserve the attention of scientists.
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Monday, August 02, 2004
Interesting that the dates mentioned herein include August 15th, the Feast
of the Assumption in the Catholic Church calendar.
I have noticed that several times in my life important and unexpected
personal changes have happened to me on or around that date.. big job or
career changes, entering a new course of study, etc.
And the Pope happens to be making a pilgrimage to Lourdes August 14th and
15th. See http://www.catholicnews.com/data/stories/cns/0404177.htm Lets
pray for his safety - if he were assassinated or otherwise made
incapacitated, there would indeed be "monumental changes for our
civilization" as mentioned in the below article. Some prophecies say that
he is the 'last' Pope, and others says there are a few more to come, and not
necessarily 'true' popes.
Thanks to Thunder for this:
Mary Elizabeth Thunder
Sent: Monday, August 02, 2004 12:08 PM
Subject: Angel Message
Thank you & Aho ... Blessings Thunder
At 08:24 AM 8/2/04 -0400, you wrote:
>A Message From The Archangels
>We stand at the Threshold of monumental changes for our civilization. In
>August of this year, a 2000 year Christian Dispensation that was over
>lighted by the Beloved Masters Jesus, Mother Mary and Archangel Gabriel
>will permanently shift as Earth commences with the next phase of its
>evolution appropriately called Resurrection. All three of these Masters
>will take on new positions in service to the next cycle of evolution. This
>period will proceed for nine years as we reach 2012. This shift catalyzes
>the final phase of the Piscean Age as we follow the leadership of these
>and other over lighting Masters that will continue to guide us in the
>direction of our Ascension.
>Everyone Will Demonstrate Their Gift Of Free Will
>On August 15, 16 and 17 the Cosmic, Angelic and Ascended Host will
>withdraw their Over lighting Forces of Light and Protection that has been
>supporting Earth's and its people's awakening,as well as, counteracting
>and buffering the toxic, unconscious and careless actions of humanity.
>(This begins at 5pm Mountain Time on the 14th) Over these three days,
>citizens of Earth will exercise their pure, individual free will without
>any outer influences impacting them. They will get to make a choice to
>serve the light of God or stay in unawakened survival and fear. There will
>be no more extensions. Each individual's experience will be unique to
>them, but this may be a sobering confrontation to their consciousness and
>its current creations OR miscreations. With or without the Cosmic Presence
>over lighting Earth and its kingdoms, this kind of self reflection
>inevitably happens when a soul is evolving into higher consciousness .
>On the 18th of August, the Cosmic Forces will return to rejoin ONLY the
>citizens of Earth who have chosen to stand with and for Love-based
>activity and purpose. Those who choose otherwise, will not be receiving
>this support any longer. There are those who commit sinister action who
>before now still had Cosmic Influence available to them, but no longer
>will this be. On that day and from now on the Energies of Resurrection
>will begin pouring into all systems and structures of consciousness to
>fund and nourish exclusively the Fifth Dimensional Civilization Paradigm.
>Your individual Spirit is the power behind this outpouring of love and
>intelligence emanating from the interconnected grid of Unity
>consciousness. The old paradigm will collapse even faster now as less and
>less sustaining life force remains to keep it alive anywhere there is the
>absence of Love. The nine years of Resurrection are a period of massive
>reorganization within social, economic and political structures that birth
>new innovations that continue to bridge life forward into higher
>We offer this startling transmission to ignite your devotion, allegiance
>and gratitude to the Power of Love and the God Identity that lives within
>you. This event opens the Pathway of Love for our Beloved Earth and all of
>it's human family.
>What Can Individuals Do To Prepare:
>Our first question to you is this: Have you made the fundamental choice to
>follow the impulses and direction of your inner God Self? A fundamental
>choice is a lifestyle choice, one that all others feed into. Most
>fundamental choices seem to be survival and fear oriented and deny the
>existence of a life that is filled with access to higher truth, powerful
>inner knowing and the self-discovery of soul gifts, talents and abilities.
>We wonder what glorious divine character might be discovered within you if
>you decided to make the choice of all choices. Say Yes to your Divinity!
>Before August 15th arrives, further the self exploration of your Divine
>Spirit and your Angelic Guides. Ask them to start right now preparing you
>for this three day event if not the rest of your life. Your call to your
>Spirit may sound like this: "Mighty I Am Presence- who am I, why am I here
>on Earth, what is my truth, place me on my true path. Prepare and
>strengthen me in all the ways that I need to be at my strongest and
>clearest. Show me where I am vulnerable to interference and close the
>doors to it immediately. Reveal ways that I can serve others during this
>time of transition. Teach me Gratitude and Reverence for life."
>So, during these three days, you will have your I Am Presence, which is
>your Spirit and you will have your Guardian Angel to sustain you however
>conscious or unconscious you are of this. Beyond measure your own Beloved
>Spirit is the most powerful resource you have or will ever have. Deepen
>your awareness of this aspect of your life, this vast intelligence within,
>fall in love with it and ask it to love you every day and every hour, over
>light you and protect you from all discord. Those of you who are on the
>awakened path can deepen even more your determination and dedication to
>fiercely stand for the Light. Those yet to awaken, or those who still
>determine to execute maleficent acts are in the hands of their Eternal
>Spirit which is the most powerful asset they have to guide them forward.
>This transmission is a call to prepare and be alert and aware, which
>doesn't end on August 18th. As a planet in evolutionary transition, all is
>well and all is as it should be. Reorganization is at hand as the Forces
>of Evolution, which are more powerful that anything Earthly, moves forward
>into its destiny. The truth is that you are really gifted change agents
>who have marvelous resources within you to assist the dimensional shift.
>Exercise as frequently as you can, your energetic clearing tools such as
>the Violet Consuming Flame, taught by the St. Germaine Foundation. Share
>this information with loved ones and friends with the language they
>understand. We will not predict the impact this event will have on Earth
>changes or in the lives of people who are still heavily attached to
>self-destructive intentions and choices. Deterioration is already evident
>in peoples' lives, their jobs and relationships. It may become so obvious
>that they seek out higher guidance and so, let it be understood that even
>after the 18th, people will be waking up to making new choices and
>following love-based pathways for living. This is a phase shift.
>Remember and exercise this Law of Life: What ever you think and feel is
>what you bring into form. Where your thoughts rest is where you are, for
>you are your consciousness. Thoughts can never become things until they
>are clothed in feelings. You are already standing in the dimensional field
>of instantaneous creation.
>Keep your fascination upon the Holy Spirit, which is the feeling and
>feminine side of life - God- the activity of Divine Love -Divine Mother
>our strength and salvation. Your spiritual task is to keep returning to
>the heart and replace what pains you with compassion and forgiveness. A
>simple prayer is "Beloved Holy Spirit, God I AM- I desire to experience
>____and fill in the blank. Suggest Compassion, Self-Love, Peace, Truth and
>on and on. Get creative with it. Another quick process you can use in the
>motion and movement of life is to imagine placing an expanding gold ball
>in your heart center where you will immediately begin to feel this warm,
>comforting vibration. That's your Spiritual Heart Light. Let it nourish
>with pure love and center you with your inner strength and truth, like an
>internal tuning fork. You will find that it gently harmonizes the mind
>with the heart and brings you u "back" into your body. It's just about
>that simple. What a proving experiment to practice these two ideas in the
>boardrooms of Corporate America, the rush hour traffic or when
>disagreements break out in families and jobs, and so on. Teach them to
>your children and practice them together so they have resources available
>to them when you aren't around.
>Not only during these three days, but from now on: Pay attention. Pay
>Attention. Pay Attention. Form support systems and 'Circle the Wagons'
>with like minded people. Last, but not least, pour your love and gratitude
>out to the Angelic Forces, the many devoted and oh, so loving dear ones,
>who every day intervene hundreds of times on your behalf without you ever
>knowing the magnitude of their love and assistance.
>With Loving Support, Uriel
Hau Kola. This list (compliments of http://www.nxs.net), is for the use
of Mary Thunder. To have a friend added, just ask!
You might also wish to see the website http://www.marythunder.com
To communicate with Thunder address your mail to her at email@example.com
"We can easily forgive a child who is afraid of the dark. The real tragedy
of life is when men are afraid of the light."
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