Friday, May 04, 2012

Makkot 2 & 7

Toads in China

JINGZHOU, China (CNN/CCTV) - Thousands of toads have invaded central China's Hubei Province.

Residents are worried the thumb-sized toads may spread parasites and diseases.

The sight of thousands of toads has frightened many of the townspeople, who say there are so many on the roads, it turns them black.

Scientists say the invasion may be the result of abnormal weather conditions.

Chicago-area hail:

EVANSTON, Ill. (CBS) — A round of heavy spring storms caused serious damage in some areas overnight, including the collapse of a façade at a church in downtown Evanston that left a person injured.

CBS 2 Meteorologist Megan Glaros says as of 5 a.m., the more intense storm activity had left the area, and the remaining storms were expected to track to the south. Flash flood warnings in the immediate Chicago area had expired, although wet roads still posed a risk for the morning commute.

But the National Weather Service says a chance of showers and thunderstorms remains through 7 a.m., and through the night Friday and into Saturday.

As CBS 2’s Susanna Song reports, the storms caused particularly severe damage in the near north suburbs.

In Morton Grove, wind snapped a tree and knocked it onto a roof. No one was injured.

In Lincolnwood, streets were filled with water, and air was visible bubbling up from the sewers as cars made their way through.

But the most severe damage was seen at St. James Armenian Church, at 813 Clark St. in Evanston just southwest of the Northwestern University quads.

Severe weather caused bricks on the front of the church to come crashing down. Firefighters rushed to the church around 8:20 p.m. Thursday.

Evanston Fire Department Division Chief Tom Janetske said the first 911 callers told dispatchers that the building itself had collapsed. Emergency workers arrived to find that bricks and masonry from the top third of the façade crashed to the sidewalk, also covering several parking spaces in front of the church.

Firefighters immediately cordoned off the area with yellow warning tape, and hundreds of bricks were scattered on the sidewalk and front lawn behind the tape. A building inspector will check the church Friday to determine the severity of the damage.

Janetske said one person was nicked by the falling debris as she scurried to seek cover from the high winds and heavy rain. Paramedics transported her to St. Francis Hospital for observation, but Janetske said the injuries appeared to be minor.

A neighbor, Graham Murphy, said he came out right after he heard the collapse.

“I heard a bang, but there was so much hail banging against the window, you couldn’t even hear the TV in the apartment, so it was pretty loud and pretty bad,” Murphy said. “I didn’t know what happened; I mean, I wasn’t sure if the road had blown up or some gas line had exploded.”

The storms Thursday night pelted the ground with heavy drops of rain, and nickel-sized hail. When it was over, streets were flooded in many areas.

“It’s a lot of water,” said Niles resident Mike Galante. He came outside wearing waders, and ended up in knee deep water in the middle of his residential block.

“Typically here, this is what happens when there’s heavy, heavy storms, fast, in this area, the street floods, and my mother-in-law’s car; her house across the street, and she will get water inside the house if we don’t get the sewers clear,” Galante said.

To prevent that from happening, Galante and another neighbor spent some time unclogging the sewers.

Galante says flooding on Niles streets has been an ongoing problem for four decades, and the only way to prevent a flooded basement is to unclog the sewers manually.

The storms also prompted airlines to cancel numerous flights at O’Hare International Airport Thursday night.

Some travelers said agents told them flights were canceled because planes needed to be inspected for hail damage.

Twelve American Airlines plans are being examined for hail damage in the hangar at O’Hare, airline officials said.


At Sat May 05, 03:22:00 PM 2012, Anonymous Neshama said...

Toads in China...
Hail in Illinois...
Is there a connection?

At Sat May 05, 04:51:00 PM 2012, Blogger Dov Bar-Leib said...

When the hail was falling in Evanston, were the skies clear in West Rogers Park and Skokie?? Now that would be a plague!

At Sat May 05, 10:40:00 PM 2012, Blogger yaak said...

No, it was crazy amounts of rain and a nice amount of hail where I live.


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