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Summer thunderstorm

Rare summer thunderstorm sparks new wildfires in California – NBC News

LOS ANGELES — A rare summer thunderstorm brought lightning that sparked several small blazes in Northern California on Sunday and stoked a huge wildfire that has forced hundreds of people from their homes north of Los Angeles.

More than 4,500 buildings remained threatened by the fire burning toward thick, dry brush in the Angeles National Forest. Firefighters already battling the blaze in steep, rugged terrain with scorching heat faced more hurdles when hundreds of lightning strikes and winds up to 15 mph pushed the flames uphill.

“We set up a containment line at the top of the hills so the fire doesn’t spill over to the other side and cause it to spread, but it was obviously difficult given the erratic wind and some other conditions,” said fire spokesman Jake Miller.

The Lake Fire was just 12% contained Sunday and has burned nearly 28 square miles of brush and trees. Fire officials said 33 buildings had been destroyed, including at least a dozen homes.

Temperatures reached more than 110 degrees and a pyrocumulus created erratic fire behavior, fire spokesman Tom Ewald said.

Thunderstorm and excessive heat were also a concern for firefighters battling a blaze that blackened almost 4 square miles in the foothills above the Los Angeles suburb of Azusa. The fire, believed to be started Thursday by a homeless man, is only 3% contained.

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Many areas of the state saw triple-digit temperatures through the weekend and the combination of prolonged heat and smoke from wildfires sent ozone pollution to levels not seen in a decade in some areas. Air quality may reach unhealthy to very unhealthy levels in several regions of Southern California on Sunday and Monday afternoons, the South Coast Air Quality Management District said.

In Northern California, moisture from an offshore tropical storm fueled a thunderstorm that brought nonstop lightning strikes early Sunday, some of which ignited small fires and knocked out power across the San Francisco Bay Area.

Wind gusts reached 75 mph (121 kph), according to the National Weather Service, which said another round of lightning may develop early Monday.

“This is probably the most widespread and violent summer thunderstorm event in memory for Bay Area, & it’s also one of the hottest nights in years,” tweeted Daniel Swain, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles.

Unsettling weather triggered an unusual warning by the weather service of a fire-induced tornado at an out-of-control forest fire that broke out north of Lake Tahoe on Saturday afternoon.

A massive fire cloud known as a pyrocumulonimbus formed over the fire, which started east of the town of Loyalton, about 40 miles west of Reno, Nevada. When high winds collided with the fire and whipped it into the air, a spectacular tornado-shaped spiral of flames was formed.

The fire has burned at least 45 square miles and triggered evacuation orders for sparsely populated communities along State Route 395 by the California-Nevada border, said Tahoe National Forest spokesman Joe Flannery.

Firefighters aided by water-dropping helicopters and air tankers faced “extreme fire behavior,” he said, and worked through the night to extinguish spot fires and protect threatened structures.

At one point, the fast-moving fire jumped a highway and came dangerously close to a fire truck. A fire crew from Truckee tweeted a video of firefighters dragging hoses as they ran alongside a moving truck that was dodging the flames.

Ryan Peel said firefighters created some defensive space around his slot machine distribution warehouse in Chilcoot, but he was worried the erratic winds could still put his business in the line of fire.

“Yesterday was extremely emotional, as we were at the mercy of the wind and the unpredictability of the fire,” Peel said. “I was stressed and terrified at the idea of losing everything I’ve spent my life working for.”

With zero containment and strong winds in the forecast, he said, “we are not out of the woods yet.”

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Categories
bringing Summer

Summer Game Fest bringing over 60 pre-release demos to Xbox One later this month – Eurogamer.net

Including Haven, Skatebird, and more.

Summer Game Fest, the months-long video games showcase helping to fill the void left by this year’s cancelled E3, continues to rumble on and will be turning its attention to Xbox One later this month, offering a week of playable, pre-release demos.

The occasion is officially being referred to as the Summer Game Fest Demo Event, and it’s along the lines of the similar Steam Game Festival on PC, which, you might recall, recently returned in June. The gist is that from Tuesday 21st July to Monday 27th July, Xbox One players will be given access to a host of playable demos, many for upcoming, unreleased games.

According to Microsoft’s announcement, there’ll be more than 60 such pre-release demos available across the week, and likely a total of between 75 and 100 demos in all.

A full list isn’t yet available but Microsoft has detailed a small number of games getting the demo treatment during the event, including developer The Game Bakers’ romantic co-op sci-fi adventure Haven, Glass Bottom Games’ avian-themed skateboarding game Skateboard, audio-based action-adventure The Vale: Shadow of the Crown, biographical island adventure Welcome to Elk, Nodding Heads Games’ Raji: An Ancient Epic, and more.

That tease of a list can be found as part of Microsoft’s announcement post, but it says the full list will be revealed closer to the Summer Game Fest Demo Event’s launch on 21st July .

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Categories
Games Summer

Summer Games Done Quick 2020 moving online this year – Polygon

Games Done Quick announced on Friday that Summer Games Done Quick (SGDQ), the annual charity speedrunning event, will be held entirely online this year because of the COVID-19 pandemic.

SGDQ was already postponed earlier this year due to the pandemic. The event’s original dates were June 21-28, and it would have been held in Minnesota. In March, as the coronavirus was starting to spread across the U.S., Games Done Quick postponed SGDQ 2020 until Aug. 16-23, but the plan was to still hold the event in person. However, with concerns about the virus still high, Games Done Quick has now chosen to move the event online instead. It will now be called Summer Games Done Quick 2020 Online.

This year’s event will have an official broadcast from the Games Done Quick studio, while the runners themselves will remain in their own homes. There will still be commentators for runners if they’d like to have them.

This won’t be Games Done Quick’s first online event. In April, the organization held an entirely online event called Corona Relief Done Quick, where it raised money for Direct Relief to help those affected by COVID-19.

Summer Games Done Quick 2020 Online will still run from Aug. 16-23, and will start at 11:30 a.m. EDT. All of SGDQ will be broadcast from the Games Done Quick Twitch channel, as usual. All donations to SGDQ 2020 Online will benefit Doctors Without Borders.


The PlayStation 4 Pro is 4K-ready, and several of the PS4’s best games are enhanced to take advantage of the more powerful console’s improved visuals and frame rates.

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