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knocker

Heavy Rains In Central And South America

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The Panama Canal closed for 17 hours in early December 2010, only the third time in its 96-year history. Authorities closed the canal after heavy rains raised two artificial lakes associated with it, Alajuela and Gatun, to unprecedented levels. The heavy rains occurred in a persistent low-pressure area along the Intertropical Convergence Zone where winds from the Northern and Southern Hemispheres meet and fuel strong storms. The canal-closing rains in Panama continued a pattern of heavy rain in Central and South America from the previous month.

This color-coded image shows rainfall amounts from December 6 to December 12, 2010. The heaviest rainfall—more than 600 millimeters or nearly 24 inches—appears in dark blue. The lightest amounts—less than 75 millimeters or 3 inches—appear in light green. The heaviest rainfall occurs along the coast of northeastern Panama. Another pocket of heavy rain occurs along Colombia’s Pacific coast.

http://earthobservatory.nasa.gov/IOTD/view.php?id=47745

Image NASA

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