Global Hazards - April 2005

Please note: Material provided in this report is chosen subjectively and included at the discretion of the National Centers for Environmental Information (NCEI). The ability to report on a given event is limited by the amount of information available to NCEI at the time of publication. Inclusion of a particular event does not constitute a greater importance in comparison with an event that has not been incorporated into the discussion. Data included in this report are preliminary unless otherwise stated. Links to supporting information are valid at the time of publication, but they are not maintained or changed after publication.

Global Focus
Map of the Vegetation Health Index during mid-April 2004
Horn Of Africa Drought
Global Hazards And Significant Events
April 2005
A multi-year drought continued through parts of the Greater Horn of Africa during April 2005. Additional information can be found below.
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Drought & Heat | Flooding | Storms | Tropical Cyclones | Extratropical Cyclones | Severe Winter Weather
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Drought conditions
A multi-month period of wet weather across southwestern areas of the United States ameliorated drought conditions in parts of California, Arizona and New Mexico. Extreme to exceptional drought persisted farther north throughout portions of the northern and central Rockies.
Click Here for the Drought Monitor depiction as of April 26, 2005
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For comprehensive drought analysis, please see the current U.S. drought report.
Precipitation anomaly estimates across Africa during February-April 2005
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Long-term drought continued across areas of the Greater Horn of Africa (eastern Kenya, southeastern Ethiopia, northern/central Somalia and Djibouti) and southern Africa. In Kenya, two million people were in need of food aid (WFP). Widespread crop failure over much of Mozambique, southern and eastern Zimbabwe, as well as adjacent parts of Malawi and South Africa, was the result of less than half the normal rainfall during the rainy season. For the latest African analysis and forecast, see the Famine Early Warning System Network.
Across Australia, rainfall deficiencies since January 2005 enhanced drought conditions across much of Western Australia southeastward into New South Wales. Please refer to the drought statement from the Australian Bureau of Meteorology.
Precipitation anomaly estimates for February through April 2005 across Australia
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Temperature anomaly estimates across Australia during April 2005
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Drought in Australia was exacerbated by hot weather. Averaged across the country, it was the warmest April on record (Australian Bureau of Meteorology). There were numerous daily maximum temperature records set across the country.
Drought across Thailand is reportedly the worst in seven years. Two million hectares (5.2 million acres) of farmland have been damaged, while causing $191 million (USD) in economic losses. More than 9 million people in 71 of Thailand's 76 provinces have been affected by water shortages. Government-sponsored cloud seeding operations were employed as an attempt to mitigate the drought conditions (Associated Press).
Precipitation anomaly estimates for February through April 2005 across Thailand
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Heavy rainfall and flooding
In the United States, heavy rainfall in the Northeast produced flooding in parts of New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania. Severe flooding along the Delaware River forced the evacuation of 6,000 residents in New Jersey and over 5,700 in Pennsylvania during the weekend of the 2nd-3rd. Around 3,200 homes in New Jersey were damaged, while one fatality was reported in New York (Associated Press).
Precipitation across the United States for the 24-hour period ending at 1200UTC on April 3, 2005
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Across Zanzibar Island off the coast of Tanzania, heavy rains associated with showers and thunderstorms during April 17-19 produced heavy flooding described as the worst in 40 years. At least 150 familes lost their homes due to the flooding (IFRC).

In Romania, flooding in the northern and western parts of the country damaged thousands of homes and submerged 30,000 hectares (75,000 acres) of farmland. More than 140 towns were affected by the flooding, which prompted government officials to issue a regional state of emergency (AFP).

Heavy rain in the Somali region of Ethiopia during April 21-30 produced flooding that caused 134 fatalities and displaced nearly 250,000 (AFP/OCHA).

In the Indonesian province of Aceh, flooding rains were responsible for 15 deaths and the destruction of 490 homes in the village of Lawe Mengkudu on the 26th. (AFP).
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Severe Storms
Radar animation of severe thunderstorms affecting Mississippi on April 6, 2005
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Thunderstorms erupted on April 6 and produced severe weather including 32 reports of tornadoes, most of which touched down in Mississippi and Louisiana. Between 20 and 25 homes were destroyed and 7 people were injured. Mississippi governor Haley Barbour declared a state of emergency (CNN).
Severe thunderstorms affected the eastern China province of Jiangsu on the 20th, producing a deadly tornado near the city of Yancheng. There were seven people killed and at least 60 injured (AFP/Associated Press).
Severe thunderstorms in eastern China on April 20, 2005
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Tropical Cyclones
Satellite image of Typhoon Sonca on April 24, 2005
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Typhoon Sonca developed in the western Pacific Ocean on the 20th, and passed near the Yap Islands as a depression on the 21st. Sonca attained typhoon status by the 23rd, but remained offshore before recurving to the northeast and weakening over cooler waters.
For 2005 basin tropical cyclone statistics, please refer to the following:
Australian Basin
North Indian Ocean Basin
Western North Pacific Basin
South Pacific Basin
South Indian Ocean Basin
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Extratropical Cyclones
No reports of significant extratropical cyclones were received during April 2005.
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Severe winter weather
Heavy snow affected the Colorado Rockies during April 10-11, 2005, as up to 76 cm (30 inches) of snow affected the mountains around Denver. In the Denver metro area, 25-38 cm (10-15 inches) of snow accumulated.
Snowfall in Colorado during April 10-11, 2005
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Elsewhere in the United States, snow fell across portions of the Great Lakes southeastward into the central and southern Appalachians on April 24. In the greater Cleveland, OH area, locally one foot (30 cm) of snow accumulated.
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Basist, A., N.C. Grody, T.C. Peterson and C.N. Williams, 1998: Using the Special Sensor Microwave/Imager to Monitor Land Surface Temperatures, Wetness, and Snow Cover. Journal of Applied Meteorology, 37, 888-911.

Peterson, Thomas C. and Russell S. Vose, 1997: An overview of the Global Historical Climatology Network temperature data base. Bulletin of the American Meteorological Society, 78, 2837-2849.

Citing This Report

NOAA National Centers for Environmental Information, State of the Climate: Global Hazards for April 2005, published online May 2005, retrieved on January 17, 2018 from