Cloud Lightning

'Extremely rare' weather phenomenon hits Louisiana Parish

© KPLC Viewer
Rutherford Beach
Severe weather hit Southwest Louisiana Saturday night, but south Cameron Parish was hit quite a bit harder. Residents from Rutherford Beach to Sabine Pass woke up around 2 a.m. Sunday to thunderstorms and flooding.

Many residents said it was something they've never seen before, at least outside of a hurricane. It was a storm surge without the tropical storm, an occurrence so rare that there is not a name for it.

In a matter of minutes, the land was covered by water. RVs were knocked off their blocks, fences and AC units were tossed around the landscape. Authorities shut down La. 82 due to the high water and debris. Andy Patrick with the National Weather Service called the weather phenomenon extremely rare.

Cloud Precipitation

Floods across snow-hit U.S. East coast? Temperatures look set to rise 30 degrees to 70F before Thanksgiving holiday

© Reuters
Flood warning: The National Weather service said a year's snowfall in Buffalo, NY, could melt by Thursday
Thanksgiving could be marred by floods as snow-hit areas across the east coast look set for a sharp rise in temperatures, the National Weather Service has warned. The big freeze saw areas such as Buffalo, New York, buried in historic blizzards, reaching a year's snowfall - 88 inches - in just five days. But that could melt in less than 24 hours if temperatures soar from 40F to 70F as predicted.

The heat wave is expected as an intense cyclone sweeps north east from the Midwest, driving warmer climes into West Virginia, Maryland, New Jersey and New York.

It could spell a moment of relief for Minneapolis after an historic stretch of freezing temperatures that has lasted 12 days - the longest since 1880.

Lake effect snow: Nature's greatest snow machine

Buffalo snowstorm
© Jeff Suhr
The above photo, taken from a plane above Buffalo yesterday by photographer Jeff Suhr, shows the brutal lake effect snow storm in effect over Western New York right now. Some areas are expecting up to six feet of snow by the end of the week. These snowstorms are among the most intense in the world, and the processes that create them are pretty spectacular.

The Great Lakes

Lake effect snow is possible in cold spots around the world, but this post will focus on the extreme weather that's often centered around the Great Lakes. The five lakes in the Upper Midwest - Superior, Michigan, Huron, Erie, and Ontario - are the perfect size and in the perfect location to maximize the impact of this annual snow bonanza.

As prevailing winds are most commonly from the north and west, the southern and eastern shores of each respective lake are known as the "snowbelt" because they take the brunt of most heavy lake effect snow events.

Comment: The articles below show the effects of nature's snow machine on Buffalo, NY this week:


So what happens when all this melts? 'Mother Nature is showing us who's boss' says New York Governor

If "Mother Nature is showing us who's boss," as New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo said of snowfall that dumped five feet on parts of Buffalo, she's not done with the lesson.

Hard as it may be to believe, the weather in areas of upstate New York socked in by a historic mountain of snow this week will be springlike by early next week - and that means melting, which could, in turn, could cause floods, the National Weather Service warned Wednesday.

Temperatures are forecast to begin warming up on Saturday, and by Monday, they could approach 60 degrees around Buffalo and other communities that are still bracing for as much as two more feet of snow on top of the 5 feet or more that many of them are buried under. It's also expected to rain on Monday - a combination that the weather service said could trigger "major snowmelt" and "significant" flooding in small streams, as well as at least some larger creeks and rivers.
Cloud Precipitation

Severe storms and flash flooding cause chaos in Brisbane

© Adam Smith/News Corp Australia
Flooding caused many residents to abandon their cars.
Video of a man doing backstroke in Brisbane's Queen Street Mall has emerged after the city suffered through one of its most devastating thunderstorms in years. Residents and businesses have been cleaning up today after a severe storm caused flooding and saw houses set on fire in south east Queensland. Damage from the storm and flash flooding includes a four metre sinkhole that opened up on Orchard Rd, Richlands.
© Tara Croser/News Corp Australia
A sinkhole (located behind the dirt) in Richlands.
© Jessy Webber
During the storm yesterday afternoon more than 16,000 lightning strikes were recorded on the GPATs system, according to electricity provider Energex. Footage also emerged of a possible tornado on the outskirts of Brisbane.

While some watched in awe at nature's display from the comfort of their homes, others embraced the downpour, with one man captured doing breaststroke in Brisbane's Queen Street Mall.
Snowflake Cold

3 feet of snow blankets Buffalo, NY area, forces the closure of a 105-mile stretch of the state Thruway

© Harry Scull Jr. , AP
John Dowl waits for roadside assistance after going off the 219 in Springville, N.Y., on Nov. 17, 2014.
Parts of New York are measuring the season's first big snowfall in feet, rather than inches, as nearly 3 feet blanketed the Buffalo area Tuesday, forcing the closure of a 105-mile stretch of the state Thruway.

The Thruway Authority says white-out conditions have closed Interstate 90 in both directions Tuesday morning from the Rochester area to Dunkirk, on Lake Erie, 35 southwest of Buffalo. The National Weather Service says a foot to almost 3 feet of snow has fallen on areas south and east of the city.

Other major highways in the area are closed, numerous schools have canceled classes and Buffalo officials have issued a driving ban for parts of the city. Before the storm hit Monday evening, the National Weather Service warned that snow off the Great Lakes could pile more than two feet high around Buffalo and across the Tug Hill region north of Syracuse through Wednesday afternoon. Winds gusting more than 30 mph were making travel impossible along the Thruway. Similar conditions were expected later Tuesday and into Wednesday along Interstate 81 between Syracuse and the Canadian border.

The highest snowfall total early Tuesday was just under 3 feet in Elma, just east of Buffalo, according to weather service meteorologist Tony Ansuini. The storm was dumping 3 to 4 inches of snow per hour, he said.
Arrow Down

Landslide kills two as storm death toll reaches 11 in Italy

Flooding in Genoa.
A landslide triggered by torrential rain engulfed a house on the shores of Italy's Lake Maggiore on Sunday, killing a pensioner and his granddaughter in what a neighbour described as a "horrific" tragedy.

The 70-year-old man died after the house was partially buried in a "sea of mud" unleashed after the hill behind the building gave way as a result of the unprecedented volumes of rainfall experienced across swaths of northern Italy in the last two weeks.

Rescue workers managed to drag the 16-year-old granddaughter from the rubble after more than four hours of digging but she died later in hospital.

Her parents and grandmother survived. The family's small, two-storey villa was the only property affected in Cerro, a hamlet on the outskirts of Laveno Mombello, a popular holiday spot.
Cloud Precipitation

UK bracing for gale force winds and floods as conveyer belt of winter storms approach

Somerset floods

The rivers in the area, including the River Parrett, rose by a staggering two metres, amid further warnings of localised flooding
Residents in Somerset are bracing themselves for another round of catastrophic flooding after the area's main river rose to a dangerous level, amid warnings of a 'conveyor belt' of winter storms.

Heavy rain has caused the River Parrett at Burrowbridge, near Bridgwater, to rise by a staggering two metres, leaving it just one metre away from bursting its banks.

The perilously-high levels caused the water to spill over into dozens of houses and gardens, just 11 months since the last major flooding incident in Somerset.

It comes less than two weeks after the Environment Agency finished dredging two of the area's rivers in an attempt to prevent future flooding.

Three feet of snow gets dumped on northern Michigan

The big, wet flakes of snow fall on downtown Marquette on Monday, November 10, 2014.
A pre-winter chill, with the possibility of light snow flurries, has settled in over the metro Detroit area, but southern Michigan residents can be thankful they don't live further north.

Parts of the Upper Peninsula are buried in as much as 3 feet of snow this morning.

As of this morning, 36.1 inches of snow had fallen since Monday in Marquette County near Negaunee. Up to 2 feet fell in other parts of the Upper Peninsula with lower totals along the Lake Michigan shoreline, the Associated Press reports.

Detroit today will see highs in the upper 30s with perhaps a few flurries, said National Weather Service meteorologist Sara Schultz. A few more flurries are possible Thursday from the morning into the afternoon, and highs from now into the weekend are to be in the 30s with lows in the 20s.

Up North, meteorologist Justin Titus says a major winter storm system that brought all that snow to the U.P. has moved out of the area, but lake-effect snow of 8 to 15 inches is forecast along Lake Superior through Saturday, according to the Associated Press.
Cloud Grey

High winds, power outages in Pacific Northwest from powerful 'winterlike air mass'

Strong winds broke out in parts of the Pacific Northwest Tuesday and Wednesday, prompting high wind warnings for parts of western Washington and northwest Oregon, injuring one person in Portland and blowing trees onto houses in the Seattle-Tacoma area. At least 66,000 customers were still without power Wednesday morning in the two states as winds continued to knock down trees and power lines.

The winds are the result of the same winterlike air mass that has plunged all the way south to the Gulf Coast and eastward into the Ohio Valley behind a powerful cold front. A powerhouse high-pressure zone over western Canada and the northern U.S. is also trying to literally push this frigid but shallow air through gaps in the Rocky Mountains and from there into the Northwest, where it faces a second obstacle in the form of the Cascade Range.

The high, whose central pressure was 1051 millibars (31.03 inches of mercury) over Canada's Northwest Territories Tuesday afternoon, has proven plenty strong enough to do just that. Winds began howling before sunrise Tuesday in the Columbia River Gorge just east of Portland, Oregon -- the most prominent gap in the Cascades, cutting a 4,000-foot-deep valley through the mountains.