Some climatic problems from around the world:


Autumn has, as usual, taken the rail companies by surprise with "leaves on the line" blamed for delays. Despite the introduction of leaf-busting trains and high-pressure water cannons, disruption to services is expected to continue for weeks.


The organisers of the Winter Olympics fear that a warmer than usual winter, caused by El Nino, may bring problems. "If it is a warm winter, we might have problems in the cross-country and freestyle skiing," the director of the organising committee said. Artificial snow-making machines will be used if necessary.


A tornado ripped through Covington, Louisiana, smashing windows and destroying a small apartment complex. There were 30 confirmed injuries and one death, mostly from weather-related road accidents.


Fears are growing for the potential effect of El Nino on the weather in Cuba, where a particularly wet and stormy winter is expected. The sugar harvest will begin early, but the greatest attention is on the period from 21-25 January when a visit to the island by Pope John Paul II is planned. The date was deliberately chosen to avoid the summer heat.