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Nuclear Event – Automatic Reactor Trip: (Unusual Event – Emergency Declared) Waterford Unit 3, Killona, LA [UPDATE]

North America – USA | State of Louisiana, Killona, Waterford Unit 3 Nuclear Power Station
Location: 29°59’43.0″N 90°28’16.0″W
Present Operational Age: ~32 years
Emergency Class: UNUSUAL EVENT
10 CFR Section:
50.72(a) (1) (i) – EMERGENCY DECLARED
50.72(b)(2)(iv)(B) – RPS ACTUATION – CRITICAL
50.72(b)(3)(v)(A) – POT UNABLE TO SAFE SD

Nuclear Event in USA on Thursday, 14 September 2017, 1233 [EDT].



“Waterford 3 is retracting a follow up notification made on July 19, 2017 for EN# 52863, concerning the loss of safety function associated with the Condensate Storage Pool (CSP) per 10 CFR 50.72(b)(3)(v)(B). The Condensate Storage Pool was performing its required safety function by providing inventory to the Emergency Feed Water pumps when the required Tech Spec level (T.S. dropped below 92%. The Technical Specification was entered at 1624 [CDT] on July 17, 2017 and exited after filling at 0039 on July 18, 2017. The total allowed outage time allowed by Tech Spec is 10 hours to be in Hot Shutdown if not restored. The Condensate Storage Pool level was restored to greater than 92% prior to exceeding the allowed outage time. Based on level being restored and the Condensate Storage Pool performing its required safety function, 10 CFR 50.72(b)(3)(v)(B) does not apply. Prior to the automatic reactor trip, Condensate Storage Pool level was greater than 92%.

“The NRC Resident Inspector has been notified of the retraction.”

Notified R4DO (Groom).

Source: NRC  Event Number:  52863


The Shackles of Dialectical Materialism’s Social Transformation

The Marxist Archipelago

“No man is an island entire of itself; every man
is a piece of the continent, a part of the main;
if a clod be washed away by the sea, Europe
is the less, as well as if a promontory were, as
well as any manner of thy friends or of thine
own were; any man’s death diminishes me,
because I am involved in mankind.
And therefore never send to know for whom
the bell tolls; it tolls for thee.”

~ John Donne (1624)

“Two things are infinite: the Universe and human stupidity; and I’m not sure about the Universe.”  Albert Einstein

In the political struggle for man’s superiority over the state (the Right), and supporters of the state’s superiority over man (the Left), we naturally arrive at a final crisis. Why final?  Because the Left seems to have exhausted all of its ammunition, and they have nothing left.

From the very beginning, it was clear that Leftist ideas were a dead-end in the development of mankind, although in some cases everything looked quite the opposite on the surface.

One of the most dismal examples is Romneycare, a payment system for medical services in the state of Massachusetts. The system worked fine, but when an attempt was made to spread it to the entire United States (i.e. Obamacare), the system for some reason stopped working. Why?  Simply because the anti-market system of Romneycare in just one state was kept afloat only thanks to monetary injections from the U.S. federal budget. In other words, all taxpayers in America sponsored a very good medical care plan for the benefit of the people of Massachusetts. Obama’s attempt to copy Romneycare for all 50 states would inevitably fail because of the absence of an extraneous source of money.

Did the Left know that Obamacare was doomed?  Of course, they did. Not only did they know, they consciously implemented what the Left has been doing for two centuries.

The Leftists turn everything that comes to hand into a political weapon.

Freedom of speech was one of the first things that Leftists turned their attention to. The Left invented “political correctness” which is nothing more than the use of censorship as a political weapon. Do the Leftists know that political correctness is the antithesis of freedom of speech?  Of course, they do, but for them, as you know, “the end justifies the means.”

The Left did not ignore science, either. Darwin’s evolutionary theory was to remain what it is–the theory of the evolution of species within the framework of biology, and nothing more. This theory was not intended by Darwin to be weaponized. Nevertheless, the Leftists liked this theory very much, and for more than a century now, it has been successfully used as a political weapon.

For example, in many countries, including the United States, prisons have long ceased to be called “prisons”. They are now referred to as “correctional facilities”. The idea of “correcting” people by creating special conditions for them comes directly from the theory of Darwin. The Marxists borrowed only what they needed from Darwin’s theory, and called it “Social Darwinism.”

Until the end of the nineteenth century, prisons were a tool of punishment and only that. In the “progressive era,” Leftists began holding mass experiments using people as their unwitting subjects. The theory of the “correction” of human nature says that if one places a person in appropriate prison conditions, it “forces” human beings to “evolve” toward the ideals set by the government.

In countries where Leftists seized power, the ideas of Social Darwinism were used to “correct” all kinds of “enemies of the people.” Thanks to the idea of social Darwinism, the seizure of power by the Leftists sooner or later leads to mass repression. Darwin, himself, did not support the idea of Social Darwinism.  However, Karl Marx planned to devote the first volume of Das Kapital to Darwin.

We all know how effective this “correction” is in these “correctional facilities.” Do the Leftists know about this? Of course, they know, but for some reason, they are trying to hide the fact that the Nazi concentration camps under Hitler were originally conceived as institutions for “correcting” people and “creating an advanced human race.” They turned into the death camps later, when the number of Jews in the occupied territories of Europe became so great that Hitler believed in the real possibility of a “final solution to the Jewish question.”

Other pseudo-scientific social experiments did not bypass the Leftists. Prohibition was at one time the crown jewel of the Left “progressive era.” It was canceled, but another legacy of the “progressive era”–the leapfrog with the transition to summer/winter time–still lives. These and other experiments on people and common sense are typical examples of using science as a political weapon, eugenics, and the “global cooling” in the 1970s as well as the “global warming” of the 1990s.

Former President Barack Obama, an avid Social Darwinist himself, went so far as to weaponize public toilets. Obama is rightfully the founder of politically correct toilets. He will undoubtedly go down in history as the “anti-segregationist” President of women’s and men’s toilets, showers and locker rooms.

Gays and lesbians were described in ancient chronicles, and no one actually interfered with them until the Left managed to turn them into political weapons. The gays were used by Leftists to control freedom of speech. The Leftists initially convinced gays of their “victimhood.” Then they demanded that the society renounce its traditional Judeo-Christian morality and practice self-censorship so as not to “discriminate” against sexual minorities.

Any negative statement about gays is elevated to the rank of a holy politically correct taboo, and rarely does anyone dare to break it. Does this mean that society has changed its attitude toward gays?  Of course, not, but Leftists, as planned, gained a reliable electorate from this marginal group and successfully established a dictatorship of political correctness.

The Leftists even got to the Boy Scouts, and the process of politicizing the Boy Scouts and turning them into Gay Scouts was, by historical standards, very fast. Boy Scouts were one of the groups most resistant to aggressive politicization.  For more than 100 years, they were apolitical, and they rejected all attempts to transform them into a branch of paramilitary training.

But the numerous and well-organized accusations of “sexual discrimination” pushed scouts out of balance, and mounting legal costs forced them to surrender.  Now, gay boys and transgender girls can be scouts, too, and scout masters can be female, gay, or even transgender. No additional electoral benefits were acquired by Leftists in this case, but another area of human activity is now closed from public discussion with the help of this same dictatorship of political correctness.

The idea of using medicine as a political weapon by the Leftists dates back to the times of the USSR and their use of so-called forensic psychiatry. It was shipped over to the United States and promptly adopted by the Left here. Recently, an attempt was made to use this weapon against Trump by declaring him mentally ill, despite the Goldwater Rule.

Genetic engineering, which saved millions of human lives from starvation, has long been used by Leftists as a political weapon. Genetically modified foods (GMOs) are severely criticized because only a hungry person can listen to Leftist preachers for their despair. A well-fed people are absolutely indifferent to Leftist ideas.

Leftists used smoking as a political weapon as well. Do you really think that the Leftists care about your health? After all, in 1998 they initiated a “peace treaty” with the leaders of the American tobacco industry. In accordance with this agreement, U.S. citizens forever lost the opportunity to sue tobacco companies in exchange for multi-billion payments to the states. Smoking was used by Leftists not only as a primitive scam but also as a regular method of “correcting” people’s behavior.

Female sex organs, too, were weaponized by Leftists. Remember the rally of pink hats? The color of human skin was repeatedly used by Leftists as a political weapon. And abortion since the time of Margaret Sanger became a weapon in the political struggle. Obama transformed the IRS into a formidable political weapon to crush the Tea Party. And other federal agencies also were weaponized.

The virtual Internet space also began to be used by Leftists as a political weapon. Google turned into a kind of re-toucher of Soviet photographs, “correcting” photos of Stalin with “inappropriate” people – “enemies of the people.” Disrespect for communism is now a “thought crime” on YouTube.  All videos on YouTube by “unwanted” content providers that contradict the “general line of the party” are demonetized by Google.

Just like during the Soviet Union, where Communists forcibly evicted troublemakers beyond 100 kilometers from Moscow, now Google “evicts” links to sites they do not like beyond the first 100 links. They know perfectly well that more than 90 percent of all Internet searches end up on the first 10-20 links. Nevertheless, Google believes that it is intellectually honest because they formally do not hide the information and do not delete it.

Facebook regularly closes about a million accounts a day. The list includes all those whom Facebook does not like–including terrorists, pornography, criminals, etc. But ordinary political dissenters also fall into the category of “undesirable elements.” A similar practice exists on Twitter and Instagram.

Recently it became known that YouTube, Twitter, and Instagram are negotiating with religious fanatics from Iran about the censorship of texts and pictures that the government of Iran regards as “not in accordance with Sharia law.”

History and culture have long been the idee fixe for Leftists. Often the use of history as a political weapon takes on an acute form by Leftists, and they begin to burn unwanted books and demolish unwanted monuments. However, both books and monuments play here only as a tool, and the goal of the Leftists, in accordance with Social Darwinism, is to create such “external living conditions” that all political opponents will shut their mouths and “correct” their behavior.

The use of science as a political weapon leads to corruption of science.

The use of women’s problems as a political weapon corrupts both women and men.

The use of censorship as a political weapon corrupts information.

The use of education as a political weapon leads to corruption of education–indoctrination.

Check your level of education–who among you know that the exact translation of the word “fascism” from Italian is “collectivism?” How many know that the leader of the Russian Communists Lenin sent Mussolini a congratulatory telegram when the fascists collectivists seized power in Italy in 1922? Who remembers the words of Joseph Goebbels that “Lenin was the greatest man, second only to Hitler, and the difference between communism and the Hitler faith was very slight?” How many of you are familiar with Hitler’s dictum about the Nazis: “We are socialists, we are the enemies of today’s capitalist system of exploitation…and we are determined to destroy this system under all conditions.”

Even microscopic groups of people are dragged out by Leftists from ordinary life and forced to transform into political weapons, for example, the transgender community. A more complex example is the use of financial leverage as a political weapon. The point is that in the normal economy, the level of the stock exchange index correctly reflects the current state of the economic cycle. But since Obama, the level of the stock market reflects not the level of the economy, but the level of monetary injections of the central bank–the Federal Reserve–into the stock market, and this is largely due to borrowing cash from future generations of Americans.

But all these are signs of an end.

Everything that could be politicized and turned into a political weapon has already been politicized and weaponized. In other words, the Leftists have run out of ammunition. The list of marginal groups has ended. There are no more reserves. The time of the last argument has arrived.

What will be the last argument? It was predicted back in 1990 by lawyer Mike Godwin, who noticed that when one of the parties in a long discussion exhausted all of its arguments, the latest argument–the accusation of an opponent as being a fascist–is in play. Of course, this is not true fascism-collectivism, but the fascism which everyone knows is bad, but do not fully understand why. The accusation of fascism is typically the last argument in a lost dispute.

The defeat in the elections of 2016 served as the trigger, which forced the Leftists to intensify the riots by the ANTIFA gang (shortened from “Antifascists”). The very name is a good indicator that the opponents of ANTIFA, according to the Leftists, should be … fascists. On the same basis, the infamous Berlin Wall was officially called the Antifaschistischer Schutzwall (Antifascist Defense Wall).

The Leftists from the Marxist Archipelago know that there are no more reserves. They know that this time they are not facing just an annoying slap in the face, but a crushing defeat. The Marxlag Archipelago is going underwater, and the time is near when the wave of supporters of the alternative capitalist idea, which from century to century proves its advantage, will overwhelm it.

The last argument of Leftists is the bloodiest. But we know that it is the last.

[Byine Gary Gindler]

06 September 2016
The Liberty Conservative (edited)


The annual Annenberg Constitution Day Civics Survey reveals that Americans no longer have the slightest clue regarding the Constitution that defines the country they are so lucky to live in.

Leftists have gained a reliable electorate from these marginal groups and successfully established a dictatorship of “Useful idiots.”

How The KGB Used Leftists As ‘Useful Idiots’, to Destroy America

Becoming a Neo-Luddite Paradise: The pain, the blame, and the Introduction of Cargo Cultism after Cataclysmic Disasters

Maslow's Hierarchy of Needs

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs. Image: Huitt, W. (2007). Maslow’s hierarchy of needs. Educational Psychology Interactive. Valdosta, GA: Valdosta State University. Retrieved 2017/04/20 from,

Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs

Abraham Maslow (1954) attempted to synthesize a large body of research related to human motivation. Prior to Maslow, researchers generally focused separately on such factors as biology, achievement, or power to explain what energizes, directs, and sustains human behavior. Maslow posited a hierarchy of human needs based on two groupings: deficiency needs and growth needs. Within the deficiency needs, each lower need must be met before moving to the next higher level. Once each of these needs has been satisfied, if at some future time a deficiency is detected, the individual will act to remove the deficiency. The first four levels are:

1) Physiological: hunger, thirst, bodily comforts, etc.;

2) Safety/security: out of danger;

3) Belongingness and Love: affiliate with others, be accepted; and

4) Esteem: to achieve, be competent, gain approval and recognition.

According to Maslow, an individual is ready to act upon the growth needs if and only if the deficiency needs are met. Maslow’s initial conceptualization included only one growth need–self-actualization. Self-actualized people are characterized by: 1) being problem-focused; 2) incorporating an ongoing freshness of appreciation of life; 3) a concern about personal growth; and 4) the ability to have peak experiences. Maslow later differentiated the growth need of self-actualization, specifically identifying two of the first growth needs as part of the more general level of self-actualization (Maslow & Lowery, 1998) and one beyond the general level that focused on growth beyond that oriented towards self (Maslow, 1971). They are:

5) Cognitive: to know, to understand, and explore;

6) Aesthetic: symmetry, order, and beauty;

7) Self-actualization: to find self-fulfillment and realize one’s potential; and

8) Self-transcendence: to connect to something beyond the ego or to help others find self-fulfillment and realize their potential.

Maslow’s basic position is that as one becomes more self-actualized and self-transcendent, one becomes more wise (develops wisdom) and automatically knows what to do in a wide variety of situations. Daniels (2001) suggested that Maslow’s ultimate conclusion that the highest levels of self-actualization are transcendent in their nature may be one of his most important contributions to the study of human behavior and motivation.

Most of the luxuries, and many of the so-called comforts of life, are not only indispensable, but positive hindrances to the elevation of mankind.” –Henry David Thoreau

Cataclysmic Disasters and some agenda driven reporting to pull at our purse strings.

‘For first time in 300 years, there’s not a single living person on the island of Barbuda’

14 September 2017

(USA Today) Barbuda has been left completely devastated by Hurricane Irma. An estimated 95% of Barbuda’s structures are damaged, and the entire island of around 1,800 people has been evacuated.

“The damage is complete,” says Ambassador Ronald Sanders, who has served as Antigua and Barbuda’s ambassador to the U.S. since 2015. “For the first time in 300 years, (since 1717) there’s not a single living person on the island of Barbuda — a civilization that has existed on that island for over 300 years has now been extinguished.”

According to Sanders, Irma was “the most ferocious, cruel and merciless storm” in the island’s history. The hurricane was 378 miles wide when it descended on Barbuda, which is just 62 square miles. [The highest elevation is 38 m (125 ft)].

“This was a huge monster,” he says. “The island and the people on the island had absolutely no chance.”

Evacuees from Barbuda were sent to Antigua, (108 sq mi) which did not suffer the same level of damage from Irma.

“We’ve had most of the people we’ve brought over to Antigua in shelters,” says Sanders. “We’ve tried to make living accommodations as good as humanly possible in these circumstances. Fortunately, we had planned ahead for this hurricane, and we had ordered supplies in from Miami and the United States before the hurricane hit.”

Though Barbudan evacuees are safe, Sanders says the situation is not ideal — people are living in cramped quarters in government facilities and nursing homes, including some 500 school-aged children. Now that school is back in session, Antigua must find room for these students.

The situation is unacceptable, and it’s costly,” he says. “We’re going to have to keep this going for sometime because Barbuda’s not going to be rebuilt in a hurry, and when we do rebuild it, we’re going to have to rebuild to massive hurricane standards. This is going to take a while. There is no electricity there, there is no potable water anymore, there is no structure in which people can survive. We have a mammoth task on our hands.”

Sanders says the world must step up and help Barbuda.

“We are a small island community — the gross domestic product of Antigua is $1 billion a year,” he says. “We cannot afford to take on this responsibility by ourselves. Barbuda is not just a disaster, it’s a humanitarian crisis. We are hopeful that the international community will come to our aid, not because we’re begging for something we want, but because we’re begging for something that is needed.”

Right now, initial estimates suggest that Barbuda will need about (*) $200 million to recover. Antigua and Barbuda will create a sustainable development plan for rebuilding Barbuda, Sanders says, adding that he hopes the global community will provide (free) humanitarian recovery aid.

“We have declared a state of emergency in Barbuda because it is a complete disaster and uninhabitable,” he says. “We cannot cope with our own resources alone.”

In addition to financial aid, Sanders says the global community must also stand up to climate change.

We believe climate change is here to stay — it’s a reality, despite all of the naysayers,” he says. “We know that these things have occurred as a result of the profligacy of the countries that are rich, and have abused the system. We, unfortunately, who contribute less than naught point naught percent of pollution of the world’s atmosphere, are the world’s greatest victims.”

This story first aired as an interview on PRI’s The Takeaway. (edited)

(Emphasis in bold)


(*) Note, this cost equals approximately $3,226,327 per sq. mile or $111,111 per person on Barbuda. This far exceeds The GDP per Capita Ppp, in Antigua and Barbuda. (See below) 

Per capita GDP is a measure of the total output of a country that takes gross domestic product (GDP) and divides it by the number of people in the country. The per capita GDP is especially useful when comparing one country to another, because it shows the relative performance of the countries. Source: Per Capita GDP – Investopedia

The Gross Domestic Product per capita in Antigua and Barbuda was last recorded at 20,777.60 US dollars in 2016, when adjusted by purchasing power parity (PPP). The GDP per Capita, in Antigua and Barbuda, is equivalent to 117 percent of the world’s average. GDP Per Capita Ppp in Antigua and Barbuda averaged 18,898.51 USD from 1990 until 2016, reaching an all time high of 24,245.80 USD in 2007 and a record low of 16,380.50 USD in 1990. Source: Trading Economics

See Also

Antigua and Barbuda GDP and Economic Data

Demographics (Antigua)

Population: 80,161 (2011 Census)
Pop. density: 285.2 /km2 (738.7 /sq mi)
Ethnic groups: 91% Black, 4.4% Other Mixed Race, 1.7% White, 2.9% Other

GDP – composition by sector (2016 estimate)

agriculture: 2.2%
industry: 17.8%
services: 80%

Source: CIA World Factbook / GDP – composition by sector

Being the tumultuous island paradises they are at present (or once were), we may discover that they were originally built upon low-tech imported slavery, political imprisonment, and nefarious marine criminal syndicates. And for those unfamiliar with Neo-Luddism , the Luddites are the denizens of these somewhat original primitive utopias. A Luddite may be defined as someone who fears or simply does not like technology nor do they find it a necessary tool for their basic survival (obviously). The original Luddites protested (sometimes violently) against textile production innovations in England in the early 19th century. Even Haiti with it’s plantation gulag, has a colorful history of such violent and bloody revolts, as have other of these island resort nations.

Now. in the 21st century, we can find Neo-Luddites scouring out antiques shops and estate sales  for ‘primitive’  writing instruments like typewriters, or competing for the possession of a set of ink and quills, desperately denying that print and script will ever die out, and avoiding places such as technology stores like they would an infectious virus or communicable disease .

Seems we sometimes forget that there are so many artisans and farmers around that it is feasible to fill our lives with goods and stomachs with foods untouched by much–if any–nightmarish technology or machinery beyond what is ordinary. Yes, the devout and near cultic worshipers of Facebook, Youtube, email, Google and others, will still be around to taunt us and what better tools are there to track who, what, and where we are or what we do, and distract us with silly animal videos and huge mundane libraries of applied human idiocracy?

Of course, it is absolutely unnecessary to wander the earth destroying technology as our Luddite forbears. Natural disasters and hazards will always do a good job of that for us, and without our help, though some fringe eco-conspiracists will disagree. So, in the aftermath of these natural ‘resets’ we may find that it is possible to live a bit more simply, albeit kicking and screaming for some. However, most of us will, and do adapt and evolve if with nothing else, a different perspective to pass on to our progeny. As for the storms of greed, exploitation and power, they seem to be as eternal as human nature, and will still continue on their course, at least until the next natural reset, and of course, afterward.

Natural Hazard – Extreme Weather Event: Hurricane Irma Caribbean Aftermath

Hurricane Irma Turns Caribbean Islands Brown

Hurricane Irma Turns Caribbean Islands Brown

Hurricane Irma Turns Caribbean Islands Brown. Image acquired August 25 – September 10, 2017. download large image (6 MB, JPEG, 11117×7664) download large image (5 MB, JPEG, 11117×7664)

Hurricane Irma churned across the Atlantic Ocean in September 2017, battering several Caribbean islands before moving on to the Florida Keys and the U.S. mainland. As the clouds cleared over places like the Virgin Islands, the destruction became obvious even from space.

These natural-color images, captured by the Operational Land Imager (OLI) on the Landsat 8 satellite, show some of Irma’s effect on the British and U.S. Virgin Islands. The views were acquired on August 25 and September 10, 2017, before and after the storm passed. They are among the few relatively cloud-free satellite images of the area so far.

The most obvious change is the widespread browning of the landscape. There are a number of possible reasons for this. Lush green tropical vegetation can be ripped away by a storm’s strong winds, leaving the satellite with a view of more bare ground. Also, salt spray whipped up by the hurricane can coat and desiccate leaves while they are still on the trees.

Irma passed the northernmost Virgin Islands on the afternoon of September 6. At the time, Irma was a category 5 storm with maximum sustained winds of 185 miles (295 kilometers) per hour. According to news reports, the islands saw “significant devastation.”

NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey. acquired August 25 – September 10, 2017

A close-up of Virgin Gorda gives a better sense of the changes. Note how some of the vegetation on the south and west of the island is a bit greener, likely because it was partly shielded from winds by the hills in the center. Differences in ocean color likely stem from differences in the ocean surface; rougher surfaces scatter more light, and appear brighter and lighter.

NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey.

acquired August 21 – September 8, 2017
acquired August 21, 2017 download large image (857 KB, JPEG, 1308×1114)
acquired September 8, 2017 download large image (691 KB, JPEG, 1308×1114)

The destruction is also clearly visible on Barbuda. This small island in the eastern Caribbean was directly hit by the category-5 storm early on September 6. These images were acquired by the Moderate Resolution Imaging Spectroradiometer (MODIS) on NASA’s Terra and Aqua satellites. The left image shows Barbuda on August 21, 2017. The right image shows the ravaged landscape on September 8.

In contrast, vegetation on Antigua appears relatively healthy and intact. With the storm’s center passing to the north, the island sustained less damage. Ground reports noted that by September 7, electricity had been restored to most of the island, and the international airport reopened.


National Hurricane Center (2017, September 6) Hurricane Irma Intermediate Advisory Number 30A. Accessed September 11, 2017.

National Hurricane Center (2017, September 6) Hurricane Irma Intermediate Advisory Number 28A. Accessed September 11, 2017.

National Public Radio (2017, September 7) Hurricane Irma Leaves Devastation Of ‘Epic Proportions’ In Caribbean. Accessed September 11, 2017.

South Florida Caribbean News (2017, September 8) Antigua back to normal, relief under way in Barbuda. Accessed September 11, 2017.

NASA Earth Observatory images by Joshua Stevens, using Landsat data from the U.S. Geological Survey. Story by Kathryn Hansen.

Landsat 8 – OLI
Terra – MODIS
Aqua – MODIS

See Also

Barbuda and Saint Barthélemy Browned by Irma

Source: NASA Earth Observatory


More regional information @

This report is for advisory number 52 of tropical cyclone IRMA-17 issued at 12 Sep 2017 03:00 UTC (GDACS Event ID 1000393, Latest episode ID: 52, inserted at 12 Sep 2017 00:49 UTC ).

This tropical cyclone is expected to have a high humanitarian impact based on the storm strength and the affected population in the past and forecasted path.

Current Green alert for wind impact in United States, Bahamas, Cuba, Turks and Caicos Islands, Dominican Republic, Puerto Rico, Virgin Islands, U.S., Virgin Islands, British, Anguilla, Saint Kitts and Nevis, Antigua and Barbuda as of 12 Sep 2017 03:00:00 UTC

Up to 14.7 million people people can be affected by wind speeds of cyclone strength or above. In addition, people living in coastal areas below 5m and can therefore be affected by storm surge.

For a full list of available products related to this event, please refer to the GDACS Resources page.

GDACS is a cooperation framework between the United Nations, the European Commission and disaster managers worldwide to improve alerts, information exchange and coordination in the first phase after major sudden-onset disasters.

Virtual OSOCC
Real time disaster coordination

Hurricane IRMA – 17 – Eastern and Central Caribbean
GLIDE: TC-2017-000125-DOM – updated: 13-Sep-2017

Situation Overview

  • Hurricane Irma made landfall on northeast Caribbean islands during the early hours local time of 6 September, affecting Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Cuba, St Barthélemy, St. Martin, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Haiti, US Virgin Islands, and Turks and Caicos.
  • 48 people have been reported dead. 1.2 million people have been affected by damage to water infrastructure. 17,000 people are in immediate need of shelter.
  • Most of the Caribbean islands battered by Irma were spared by Hurricane Jose
  • Key priorities are: Restoration of essential services, water and sanitation kits, canned food, fuel, building materials for reconstruction, equipment to clean islands, health and dignity kits, seeds and agricultural goods.
  • See here where UNDAC teams and partners are located.

UNDAC deployment to Barbados/Antigua:

  • A team of 8 people has been prepositioned in Barbados (3 UNDAC members, 1 ROLAC, 2 IHP, 2 MapAction) in order to coordinate with the RC, and relevant partners, such as CDEMA.
  • Team members have been reassigned to Anguilla, Antigua and BVI. For more information see the presence map or the contact list.
  • The coordination hub in Antigua is the National Operations Disaster Center, in Barbados it is the CDEMA office.
  • UNDAC Team Leader is Peter Muller:, +41 79 535 0434.
  • UNDAC team e-mail address:
  • Mission Focal Point in FCSS Geneva is George Murray:, +41 76 691 0115.

UNDAC deployment to Sint Maarten:

  • FCSS deployed 2 UNDAC members to Sint Maarten. See here the contact list.
  • The UNDAC Team Leader is Jacob Sjaak Seen. His contact details: email:, Tel: +31 65 395 6001, Satellite phone 00881621427406
  • The Coordination center is located here: 18° 1’31.79″N 63° 2’42.33″W
  • the Base of Operation of the USAR team is at the hospital Sint Maarten Medical Center located here: 18° 1’35.02″N 63° 3’58.34″W
  • UNDAC Team in Sint Maarten e-mail:
  • Mission Focal Point in FCSS Geneva: Stefania Trassari,, +41 22 917 2815, mobile: +41 766910239

Please check yourself in on Humanitarian ID (list “Hurricane Irma – Sep 2017”):

Situation Overview

  • Hurricane Irma made landfall on northeast Caribbean islands during the early hours local time of 6 September, affecting Antigua and Barbuda, Anguilla, Bahamas, British Virgin Islands, Cuba, St Barthélemy, St. Martin, the Virgin Islands, Puerto Rico, Dominican Republic, Haiti, US Virgin Islands, and Turks and Caicos.
  • 48 people have been reported dead. 1.2 million people have been affected by damage to water infrastructure. 17,000 people are in immediate need of shelter.
  • Most of the Caribbean islands battered by Irma were spared by Hurricane Jose.
  • Key priorities are: Restoration of essential services, water and sanitation kits, canned food, fuel, building materials for reconstruction, equipment to clean islands, health and dignity kits, seeds and agricultural goods.
  • For more information about the countries please see the country sub-pages.

UNDAC deployment

  • FCSS deployed a 6 people UNDAC team to the Turks and Caicos Islands in order to support coordination, assessment and information management.
  • See here the contact list.
  • UNDAC Team Leader: Gilbert Greenall, +44 7831 111749.
  • The UNDAC team e-mail address is:
  • Mission Focal Point: George Murray:, +41 76 691 0115.
  • See here where UNDAC teams and partners are located.
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Biological Health Hazard – Religious migration and infectious pilgrimages …

The Hajj: a threat to infectious disease prevention?

See: Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV)

August 31, 2017

(Outbreak News Today) This week, millions of Muslims will make their pilgrimage to Mecca, Saudi Arabia, known as the Hajj. For observant Muslims, the Hajj is a religious duty and important act of faith. For public officials in Saudi Arabia and internationally, the Hajj poses serious challenges in the prevention and control of infectious diseases.

During the Hajj, more than two million travelers from over 183 countries throughout the world gather in Mecca. This is one of the most geographically and ethnically diverse mass gatherings in the world, and the scale, density and diversity of migration from all reaches of the planet has the potential to amplify the risk of disease transmission. For international businesses, this presents a considerable concern given the global nature of this event and its far-reaching impact.

While the risk of communicable disease outbreaks is not considered to be higher than expected for international mass gatherings of this size, the Hajj does pose unique public health concerns. Extended stays at Hajj sites, extreme heat (temperatures can exceed 120°F), and crowded living conditions increase the risk of disease transmission, especially airborne, food-borne and water-borne pathogens. For example, the probability of tuberculosis transmission is estimated to be around 10% in those with high levels of exposure; while in the past, 11% of Hajj returnees tested positive for influenza viruses in 2014 and 2015.  The World Health Organization has raised concerns about the risk of cholera during the Hajj, related to the ongoing outbreaks in Yemen and some African countries that may send pilgrims to Mecca. However Saudi health officials maintain they are prepared to deal with any potential health risks.

Although the Hajj has not given rise to large scale infectious disease outbreaks, there have been numerous, minor outbreaks that have been facilitated by the extreme congestion of people and the physically strenuous conditions of this pilgrimage. One notable example is the worldwide outbreak of serogroup W-135 meningococcal disease that occurred during the 2000 Hajj, which resulted in an estimated 400 cases in Hajj pilgrims and close contacts in 16 countries.

Due to the concern for disease transmission, the Ministry of Health (MoH) of Saudi Arabia carries out enhanced surveillance and staffing of health facilities prior to and during the event. To obtain a Hajjvisa, the MoH requires all pilgrims to produce proof of vaccination for meningococcal disease as well as polio and yellow fever for those coming from at-risk locations. Additionally, Saudi Arabia provides free medical care to all pilgrims in 25 hospitals with 5000 beds. All communicable diseases of importance at mass gatherings are monitored, especially respiratory tract infections, food poisoning, diarrheal diseases, meningococcal disease, viral hemorrhagic fevers (dengue, Alkhurma, Marburg, Crimean Congo, Ebola and Lassa), yellow fever, MERS, polio and plague.

While Saudi Arabia is prepared to identify and treat infectious diseases during this mass gathering, the risk of infectious disease outbreaks remains given the large, geographically dispersed number of pilgrims travelling to Saudi Arabia. Returning pilgrims can spread disease upon their return and thus trigger outbreaks in their home countries. It only takes one case to go unnoticed or undetected to cause an epidemic.  Examples of disease outbreaks linked to returning travelers (but not the Hajj) include MERS in South Korea and the global spread of SARS.

To contain epidemic-risk, the global community must be equipped to stop the spread of disease, which cannot be solely the responsibility of Saudi Arabia. While countries assess and prepare for potential outbreaks, international corporations also have a prime opportunity to assess and manage their risk, especially companies with supply chains dependent on Saudi Arabia and the surrounding region, or those with large amounts of international travel. Should the Hajj, or another mass gathering, spark the spread of an infectious disease, companies must act swiftly to protect their employees and maintain stability within the workplace.

To effectively and efficiently manage infectious disease outbreaks, international corporations should consider the following:

  1. Review, update and create outbreak contingency plans: Using plans that may already exist for natural catastrophic events such as floods or earthquakes, build a framework for responding to an outbreak that affects your employees, facilities, distribution supply chain or customer base. Having a plan at place before an outbreak, ensures the most rapid response.
  2. Assess risk at each location of your company: The risk for disease spread varies greatly by region and by location. Ensure that airborne and water-borne diseases likely for a given area are covered and that plans vary by geography and demographics of each location.
  3. Offer immunization programs: Corporations can reduce risk of vaccine preventable diseases by offering immunization programs, such as programs for seasonal flu. Several notable companies offer immunization programs and international travel immunization advice including Lowe’s Companies, United Continental Holdings, Hewlett-Packard, and American International Group.

[Byline Jaclyn Guerrero]

Biological Health Hazards – Emerged Pathogens: Infectious Diseases, Neisseriaceae (Kingella Infections)

Kingella organisms colonize the human respiratory tract. They cause skeletal infections, endocarditis, and bacteremia and, rarely, pneumonia, epiglottitis, meningitis, abscesses, and ocular infections.

Kingella, which belong to the family Neisseriaceae, are short, nonmotile, gram-negative coccobacilli that occur in pairs or short chains. The organisms are slow-growing and fastidious. Kingella are recovered from the human respiratory tract and are a rare cause of human disease.

Among Kingella species, K. kingae is the most frequent human pathogen; these organisms frequently colonize the respiratory mucous membranes. Children aged 6 mo to 4 yr have the highest rates of colonization and invasive disease from this respiratory tract pathogen. K. kingae is transmitted from child to child through close personal contact (eg, at day care centers). Infection has a seasonal distribution, with more cases in fall and winter.

Diseases Caused by Kingella

Skeletal infections (septic arthritis, osteomyelitis)


The most common manifestations of K. kingae disease are

Rare manifestations include pneumonia, epiglottitis, meningitis, abscesses, and ocular infections.

The most common skeletal infection is septic arthritis, which most frequently affects large, weight-bearing joints, especially the knee and ankle. Osteomyelitis most frequently involves bones of the lower extremities. Onset is insidious, and diagnosis is often delayed. Hematogenous invasion of intervertebral disks can occur, most commonly in the lumbar intervertebral spaces.

Kingella endocarditis has been reported in all age groups. Endocarditis may involve native or prosthetic valves. Kingella is a component of the so-called HACEK group (Haemophilus aphrophilus and H. parainfluenzae, Aggregatibacter, Cardiobacterium, Eikenella, Kingella), which includes fastidious gram-negative bacteria capable of causing endocarditis.

Diagnosis of Kingella infections requires laboratory isolation from fluids or tissues thought to be infected.


A penicillin or cephalosporin

Kingella organisms are generally susceptible to various penicillins and cephalosporins. However, antimicrobial susceptibility testing is needed to guide therapy. Other useful drugs include aminoglycosides, trimethoprim/sulfamethoxazole, tetracyclines, erythromycin, and fluoroquinolones.


All pathogenic aerobic gram-negative cocci belong to the Neisseriaceae family, which is composed of 5 genera:

Of these, Neisseria includes the most important human pathogens:

N. meningitidi

N. gonorrhoeae

Numerous saprophytic Neisseriaceae commonly inhabit the oropharynx, vagina, or colon but rarely cause human disease.

Moraxella catarrhalis causes otitis media in children, sinusitis in people of all ages, and exacerbations of COPD, sometimes community-acquired pneumonia in adults, and infrequently bacteremia. Over half a dozen other Moraxella sp and the related Kingella kingae cause infections in the CNS, respiratory tract, urinary tract, endocardium, bones, and joints.

Humans are the only reservoir of Neisseria, and person-to-person spread is the prime mode of transmission. Both N. meningitidis (meningococcus) and N. gonorrhoeae (which causes gonorrhea), can exist in an asymptomatic carrier state. Carrier states are particularly important with meningococcus because of its association with epidemics.

The Merck Manual – Kingella Infections/Infectious Diseases, Neisseriaceae

The presence of the bacterium Kingella kingae in children’s throats was strongly linked to bone and joint infection with the same bacterium, according to new research published in the Canadian Medical Association Journal (CMAJ).

Bone and joint bacterial infections in children can have devastating effects on long-term mobility and can cause death. Previously, most infections were thought to be caused by StaphylococcusStreptococcus and Haemophilus influenzae type b bacteria and were treated with long-term antibiotics and/or surgery. Over the last years, new highly sensitive techniques have allowed more precise identification of the bacteria responsible for these infections.

The study, between two pediatric centres in Canada and Switzerland, included 77 children aged 6 months to 4 years of age admitted for suspected bone or joint infection and 286 controls. Of the suspected infections, 65 children had confirmed bone or joint infection.

“Using improved diagnostic methods, our study found that the vast majority of children younger than 4 years old suffering from a bone or joint infection were infected by Kingella kingae bacteria,” states Dr. Jocelyn Gravel, Centre hospitalier universitaire Sainte-Justine, Université de Montréal, Montréal, Quebec. “More importantly, we discovered that 70% of children who had a bone/joint infection carried these bacteria in their throats, while it is uncommon in uninfected children (only 6%).”

These results are important because the proportion of unknown pathogen was very high in previous studies. Now, using innovative diagnosis methods, this study demonstrated the K. kingae is not uncommon. Rather, it is by far the most common pathogen for bone or joint infection in children.

“Based on this study, we plan to change the way we investigate children at risk of bone/joint infection, because the identification of K. kingae in the throat of a child with a suspected bone infection will point towards K. kingae as the culprit. This may decrease the number of other tests performed to identify the pathogen.”

The authors note that it was a small study and further studies in other North American cities are needed.

05 September 2017
Outbreak News Today

See Also

Principles and Practice of Clinical BacteriologyKingella Kingae Infections in Adults.  Stephen Gillespie, Peter M. Hawkey. John Wiley & Sons, 2006

Biological Health Hazard – Bioweapon cocktails and more: Tularemia

Tularemia: Molecular map shows how to disable potential bioweapon

During World War II, the Soviet Red Army was forced to move their biological warfare operations out of the path of advancing Nazi troops. Among the dangerous cargo were vials of Francisella tularensis, the organism that causes tularemia and one of the world’s most infectious pathogens.

Years later, a Soviet defector claimed that his country had unleashed their stores of F. tularensis on German soldiers, weakening them shortly before the pivotal Battle of Stalingrad. Others believe the outbreak on the German-Soviet front was more likely spread by rats, not Russians. Yet no one has disputed the bacteria’s capacity to inflict harm.

The Centers of Disease Control ranks tularemia as one of the six most concerning bioterrorism agents, alongside anthrax, botulism, plague, smallpox and viral hemorrhagic fever. And Russian stockpiles of it likely remain.

American scientists studying F. tularensis recently mapped out the complex molecular circuitry that enables the bacterium to become virulent. The map reveals a unique characteristic of the bacteria that could become the target of future drug development.

The research appeared early online Sept.1 and will be in the Sept. 13, 2017 journal Genes & Development.

“Now we have the coordinates for stopping one of the most infectious agents known to man. By having all of these pieces, and understanding how they fit together, we can design new drugs that can shut down virulence,” said Maria A. Schumacher, Ph.D., senior study author and the Nanaline H. Duke Professor of Biochemistry at the Duke University School of Medicine.

F. tularensis is an exceptionally hardy organism that can infect a variety of hosts, including humans, rabbits and mosquitos, and can survive for weeks at a time in dead and decaying carcasses. It is so virulent that a person only has to inhale 10 microscopic particles of the bacterium to become infected. The Russians and Japanese, as well as the Americans and their allies, all explored its potential as a biological weapon during World War II.

After the war, Russians continued to develop the agent, searching for mutations that could make it resistant to antibiotics and thus even more deadly. The World Health Organization has since projected that 110 pounds of F. tularensis dispersed over a city of 5 million people would cause about 250,000 cases of severe illness, and 19,000 deaths.

Despite decades of fervent study, the factors that make this bacterium so pathogenic are still not fully understood. Recently, a cluster of genes called the “Francisella pathogenicity island” emerged that is essential for its virulence. In this study, researchers carried out a battery of structural, biochemical and cellular studies to define the molecular factors that turn these pathogenicity genes on and off.

They suspected that a stress-sensing molecule or “alarmone” called ppGpp might play a role. Alarmones are known to respond to stressful conditions by promoting survival and virulence in bacteria.

Lead study author and Duke graduate student Bonnie J. Cuthbert started by looking at factors that might interact with ppGpp, such as the aptly named protein pathogenicity island gene regulator or PigR, the macrophage growth locus protein A or MglA, and the stringent starvation protein A or SspA. Cuthbert used a technique called x-ray crystallography to produce atomic-level three-dimensional structures of each of these proteins, and then assembled them one by one, like the components of a circuit board.

She found that MglA and SspA partner up to form a two-part protein that contains a unique binding pocket on its underside for ppGpp. Once this molecule is bound, it recruits PigR and subsequently stabilizes RNA polymerase to this area of the F. tularensis genome, creating a large complex that latches onto the DNA to flip on the pathogenicity genes.

The researchers then created mutations that destroyed the binding pocket for ppGpp. They found that when the alarmone couldn’t bind, pathogenicity couldn’t be activated.

“We have uncovered a totally novel way for controlling virulence,” said senior study author Richard G. Brennan, Ph.D., James B. Duke Professor of Biochemistry and Chair of Biochemistry at Duke University School of Medicine and also an advisor to Cuthbert. “If we could block this binding pocket, then we could stop virulence in F. tularensis. It would be a new way of fighting this bacteria, by disabling it with antivirulence drugs rather than by killing it outright with antibiotics.”

06 September 2017
Outbreak News Today


The following is extracted from
Pedati C, House J, Hancock-Allen J, et al: Notes from the Field: Increase in Human Cases of Tularemia — Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming, January-September 2015.
MMWR Morb Mortal Wkly Rep. 2015 Dec 4;64(47):1317-8;

“Approximately 125 cases have been reported annually in the USA during the last 2 decades. As of 30 Sep 2015, a total of 100 tularemia cases were reported in 2015 among residents of Colorado (n = 43), Nebraska (n = 21), South Dakota (n = 20), and Wyoming (n = 16). This represents a substantial increase in the annual mean number of 4 (975 percent increase), 7 (200 percent), 7 (186 percent) and 2 (70 percent) cases, respectively, reported in each state during 2004-2014.

“Patients ranged in age from 10 months to 89 years (median = 56 years); 74 were male. The most common clinical presentations of tularemia were respiratory disease (pneumonic form, [n = 26]), skin lesions with lymphadenopathy (ulceroglandular form, [n = 26]), and a general febrile illness without localizing signs (typhoidal form, [n = 25]). Overall, 48 persons were hospitalized, and 1 death was reported, in a man aged 85 years. Possible reported exposure routes included animal contact (n = 51), environmental aerosolizing activities (n = 49), and arthropod bites (n = 34); a total of 41 patients reported 2 or more possible exposures.

“Although the cause for the increases in tularemia cases in Colorado, Nebraska, South Dakota, and Wyoming is unclear, possible explanations might be contributing factors, including increased rainfall promoting vegetation growth, pathogen survival, and increased rodent and rabbit populations. Increased awareness and testing since tularemia was reinstated as a nationally notifiable disease in January 2000 is also a possible explanation for the increase in the number of cases in these 4 states. Health care providers should be aware of the elevated risk for tularemia within these states and consider a diagnosis of tularemia in any person nationwide with compatible signs and symptoms. Residents and visitors to these areas should regularly use insect repellent, wear gloves when handling animals, and avoid mowing in areas where sick or dead animals have been reported.”

Tularemia is a classic zoonosis, capable of being transmitted by aerosol, direct contact, ingestion, or arthropods. Inhalation of aerosolized organisms (as in the laboratory or as an airborne agent in an act of bioterrorism) can produce a pneumonic form. Direct contact with or ingestion of infected carcasses of wild animals (such as cottontail rabbits) can produce the ulceroglandular, oculoglandular, oropharyngeal (local lesion with regional inflammation of a lymph node), or typhoidal form. Immersion in or ingestion of contaminated water can result in infection in aquatic animals. Ticks can maintain infection transstadially and transovarially. Transstadial transmission occurs when a pathogen remains with the vector from one life stage (“stadium”) to the next. Transovarial or transovarian transmission occurs in certain arthropod vectors as they transmit disease-causing bacteria from parent arthropod to offspring arthropod, which makes them an efficient reservoir as well as a vector. Recognized vectors in the USA include _Dermacentor andersoni_ (wood tick), _Amblyomma americanum_ (lone star tick), _Dermacentor variabilis_ (dog tick), and _Chrysops discalis_ (deer fly).

Tularemia does not spread from person to person essentially in contradiction to another category A bioterrorism agent, _Yersinia pestis_, in which the pneumonic form can easily be transmitted.

See Also

ISIS and bioterrorism: Tularemia planned use in Turkey’s water