Entries in Storm (3)


Storm Blamed for Instagram, Netflix, and Foursquare Outages

THOMAS COEX/AFP/Getty Images(NEW YORK) -- If you had some trouble over the weekend uploading a photo to Instagram, checking in on Foursquare, watching a movie on Netflix, pinning something to your Pinterest board, or posting to Reddit, you’re not alone.

Amazon’s Web Services, which powers many sites and Cloud services, was taken out by the same lighting storms that caused power outages across the country. Amazon’s main server facility in Northern Virginia was hit hard by the storm, which left over 3 million people on the East Coast without power.

The outages started around 9 p.m. ET on Friday and lasted close to 12 hours for some of the services. Instagram and Netflix informed users via Twitter, however, many still were looking for answers. Instagram became one of the highest searched terms on Google on Saturday. Most services were up and running by Saturday afternoon.

This is the second time Amazon’s Web Services went down this month.

Copyright 2012 ABC News Radio


Tracking Hurricanes on Your Smartphone

Stockbyte/Thinkstock(WASHINGTON) -- Hurricane Irene, now moving through the Caribbean and perhaps threatening the Southeast by week's end, is only the latest sign of one of the most active hurricane seasons in years. So you want to know where the action is and whether you're in the line of fire. Your smartphone could be your most valuable tool during or after a hurricane, with dozens of apps available to provide crucial information.

Here are a few apps:

Hurricane HD: iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch. $3.99Hurricane HD lets you track storms, with moving radar and satellite imagery from the National Hurricane center. It provides tropical bulletins, forecasts, and advisories for the Atlantic and Pacific Basins. You can watch video updates for storms currently underway or forming, and find data on major storms of the past, like Andrew, Hugo and Katrina.

The Weather Channel: iPhone, iPod touch, and iPad, Android. FreeThe Weather Channel has fully customizable weather maps, animated radar maps, detailed weather conditions and forecasts, severe weather alerts, and a notification bar with the current temperature and severe weather alert indicator. In addition to the popular location-based local video forecasts, the video section now includes the "Must See Six" videos each day from a national collection. It allows you to get weather forecasts for your location or search by city, ZIP code, street address or landmark. The app also includes interactive maps that are fully customizable and feature the functionality of Google Maps. Customers can decide to display layers such as radar, clouds, UV index, rainfall and more.

Global Alert Network: iPad, iPhone, iPod Touch, Android Blackberry. Free
– The Global Alert Network delivers hands-free national traffic and weather alerts. See iTunes for Apple devices, or go to BlackBerry for a download. The Global Alert Network is a location-aware network platform that automatically broadcasts audible hands-free alerts to mobile devices.


National Hurricane Center – Tips on hurricane preparedness, storm surge, marine safety, with archives so you can track the past accuracy of storm forecasts.

The American Red Cross has an app called Shelter View that tells you what shelters are open and how close they are to capacity. After the storm is over, this free app from the government helps you locate and apply for relief.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio


Monsanto Company Pledges $100K to St. Louis Relief Efforts

Monsanto Company(ST. LOUIS) -- One company has stepped forward and pledged to help with relief efforts in St. Louis after storms swept through the area Friday and left a trail of devastation in its wake.

The Monsanto Company issued a press release on Saturday saying it pledges $100,000 to the American Red Cross to aid in early relief efforts. The company says its donation is expected to support the Red Cross in local efforts related to the storm, while providing the organization with some flexibility as crews work to clean up the mess left by the apparent tornado.

"St. Louis is our home and we're doing our part to help our friends and neighbors begin the clean-up and rebuilding efforts," said Jan Holloway, Senior Vice President of Community Relations for Monsanto. "We're so thankful there were minimal injuries and we believe this pledge to the Red Cross can provide the agency with an initial boost to help more quickly advance their relief efforts."

Storms pummeled parts of Missouri Friday evening, resulting in severe damage to the Lambert-St. Louis International Airport, and minor injuries to four people.

Copyright 2011 ABC News Radio

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