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Snowflake Cold

Rare snowstorm near Syria-Lebanon border brings havoc, disrupts aid

lebanon snow storm
© AFP Photo / STR
A Syrian refugee shovels snow outside her tent in the makeshift refugee camp of Terbol near the Bekaa Valley town of Zahleh in eastern Lebanon on December 11, 2013.
At least two people were killed and 14 injured as the first snowfall of the season hit Syria and Lebanon. High winds and freezing temperatures affected refugee camps and disrupted international aid. More severe weather is expected this winter.

The storm, named 'Alexa,' took the lives of two people and injured 14 others in Lebanon, Ya Libnan reported, citing Red Cross Secretary General George Kettaneh.

The winter storm caused transportation chaos in the region and grounded the UN humanitarian airlift, which was scheduled to bring food and supplies from Iraq to the northeastern Kurdish areas of Syria. Tens of thousands of people are isolated in those areas, waiting for the aid to arrive.

"Qamishli airport (in Syria) has suspended all flights due to weather conditions, snow and poor visibility," UN High Commissioner for Refugees (UNHR) spokesman Dan McNorton told Reuters. "We're not going to be able to make those flights happen until the weather improves."

The storm is estimated to last until Saturday, with temperatures plummeting below seven degrees Celsius in mountainous regions of Lebanon.

"I don't know if this tent will hold up, it's just a few flimsy pieces of metal holding it up," refugee Abu Suleiman told AP. He resides in the Lebanese town of Marj, located near the border with Syria.

In the northeastern Lebanese town of Arsal, temperatures hovered just above zero degrees Celsius. A member of the town's municipal council, Wafiq Khalaf, said that refugees were "shivering with cold, especially the ones in tents."

"At the moment there is more than 10 centimeters of snow on the ground, but more is expected," he told AFP.


Ice slides from roof, crushes cars in Texas

This scary video was taken in Plano, Texas, where warming weather caused thick ice sheets deposited by a winter storm to slide from the roof of an apartment complex Sunday. According to WFAA 8, ice several inches thick crushed cars and tore through trees.

Residents recorded the falling ice with their smartphones as it smashed onto sidewalks and cars parked on the street. Luckily, no one was hurt. At least eight cars were damaged, some with collapsed roofs and shattered windshields.

Ice Cube

Watch the moment enormous sheets of ice in Texas CRUSH a Jaguar after falling off a building

A Jaguar has been destroyed and several others seriously damaged following a spate of ice sheets thawing and falling from sloped buildings in Plano, Texas

Authorities closed streets as maintenance crews worked to push the ice from buildings to prevent any accidents

The ice storm that hit the area this week left over 250,000 residents and businesses without power and caused over 1000 flight delays

Shocked bystanders watched aghast as huge sheets of ice slipped off the top of a building in Texas and onto cars below, completely crushing them.

Plano, in north Texas, has been hit hard with snow and ice since the weekend, but thawing temperatures have started to melt the large quantities of snow and ice that have built up.

The affect has caused major damage to vehicles parked in the streets.

In one case, which was caught on video, a Jaguar was crushed in Plano, after its roof collapsed and windows smashed under the weight of the falling freeze.

The sheets also damaged a Corvette and several other vehicles.

Snowflake Cold

Lebanon takes action ahead of snowstorm Alexa

sidon residents
© The Daily Star/Mohammed Zaatari
Sidon residents buy essentials to prepare for Alexa.
Caretaker Education Minister Hassan Diab announced Tuesday the closure of public and private schools as municipalities across Lebanon began taking precautionary measures in anticipation of a brutal snowstorm.

"Because Lebanon is subject to the harsh snowstorm, 'Alexa,' which has already caused a sharp decline in temperatures, and rainwater is expected to increase and block traffic, to avoid the risks caused by the storm and its impact on school students ... public and private schools will be closed and classes will not be held Wednesday," the statement from the Education Ministry said.


Istanbul, Turkey, left suffering from effects of heavy snowfall

Istanbul snow
© AA photo
Snow began falling on Istanbul’s outskirts in the afternoon and intensified in the late hours of the evening in the center of the city.
The first snow of winter started to fall in Istanbul tonight as the Istanbul Metropolitan Municipality took tight measures to prevent disruptions to traffic and public transport.

Snow began falling on Istanbul's outskirts in the afternoon and intensified in the late hours of the evening in the center of the city. The snowy weather is expected to affect Istanbul until Dec. 12, meteorological officials said.

Snowflake Cold

Historic cold across Pacific Northwest‏

Historic December cold descended upon parts of the Pacific Northwest early Sunday morning, as the mercury dipped to as low as -41 degrees below zero in Oregon. Under a thick blanket of snow, several locations set new records.

At Lakeview, Oregon the mercury dropped to -27 degrees below zero, setting a new all-time record for that location. The previous record was -22 degrees below zero set back in February of 1933 and again in January of 1937.

Perhaps even more impressive was on the west side of the Cascade mountains where Eugene, Oregon fell to -10 degrees below zero Sunday morning. Ironically, this is not an all-time record for Eugene. As luck would have it, Eugene's all-time record low is -12 degrees below zero was set on this very day back in 1972, making today the second coldest day in Eugene modern day history. Records date back more than 123 years (to 1890) in Eugene.

Snowflake Cold

Arctic blast sent subzero chill to Rockies, Plains; Hard freeze for California

staying cold
A bitterly cold air mass spread across the western states and into the Plains and Midwest during the first week of December. One of the coldest temperatures recorded happened the morning of Saturday, Dec. 7, when the temperature in Jordan, Montana dropped as low as -42!

In some cities, the frigid air mass has been the coldest seen in years or has broken daily record lows. Here's a few examples:

Snowflake Cold

Global warming? Antarctica hit a new all-time coldest temperature record of -135 degrees Fahrenheit TWICE in last three years

Feeling chilly? Here's cold comfort: You could be in East Antarctica which new data says set a record for "soul-crushing" cold.

Try 135.8 degrees Fahrenheit below zero; that's 93.2 degrees below zero Celsius, which sounds only slightly toastier. Better yet, don't try it. That's so cold scientists say it hurts to breathe.

A new look at NASA satellite data revealed that Earth set a new record for coldest temperature recorded. It happened in August 2010 when it hit -135.8 degrees. Then on July 31 of this year, it came close again: -135.3 degrees. The old record had been -128.6 degrees, which is -89.2 degrees Celsius.
© Ted Scambos, National Snow and Ice Data Center
NASA Spots Coldest Place on Earth in Antarctica at a Record -94.7 Celsius
Ice scientist Ted Scambos at the National Snow and Ice Data Center said the new record is "50 degrees colder than anything that has ever been seen in Alaska or Siberia or certainly North Dakota."

"It's more like you'd see on Mars on a nice summer day in the poles," Scambos said, from the American Geophysical Union scientific meeting in San Francisco Monday, where he announced the data. "I'm confident that these pockets are the coldest places on Earth."

Comment: They sure took their sweet time publishing this information... is that because it conflicts with their 'climate models' and supports the imminent ice age theory?

Ice Cube

The sun in November 2013: You're going to have to add more antifreeze

In November 2013 the sun showed signs of more activity as sunspot number (SSN) was 77.6. This solar cycle month (the 60th of the current cycle) was therefore "only" 32% below the level of a normally active sun. Just as a reminder: February 2013 was 66% below the mean value of all the previous observed cycles 1-23! Compared to the mean (blue) the current cycle (red) appears as follows:
Solar cycle 24
© Frank Bosse and Fritz Vahrenholt
Figure 1: Current cycle 24 (red) versus mean solar cycle (blue) and solar cycle 5 (gray).

Snowflake Cold

More of U.S. expected to see snow, sleet, ice - National Weather Service

snow storm Texas
© Associated Press/Tony Gutierrez
Vehicle traffic in IH-35 North and South bound is shown at a dead stop due to ice road conditions, Saturday, Dec. 7, 2013, in Sanger, Texas. Officials with the Texas Department of Transportation said "several miles" of the interstate had been backed up for 24 hours.
After cold rain and winds lashed the Southwest and other parts of the country Friday, millions of residents hunkered down for icy conditions expected to last through the weekend as the cold snap was forecast to continue causing problems and trekking northeast.

Face-stinging sleet, thick snow and blustery winds led to slick road conditions, school closures, power outages and event cancellations as the wintry blast dropped temperatures to freezing and below from Texas to Ohio to Tennessee on Friday.

In California, four people died of hypothermia in the San Francisco Bay Area while the region was gripped by freezing temperatures.

The weather created a strangely blank landscape out of normally sun-drenched North Texas: Mostly empty highways were covered in a sometimes impassable frost.

It forced the cancellation of Sunday's Dallas Marathon, which was expected to draw 25,000 runners, some of whom had trained for months. A quarter of a million customers in North Texas were left without power, and many businesses told employees to stay home to avoid the hazardous roads.

Meanwhile, around 7 inches of snow fell in northeast Arkansas and the Missouri boot heel, according to the National Weather Service in Memphis. Ice accumulated on trees and power lines in Memphis and the rest of West Tennessee after layers of sleet fell throughout the region Friday.

The storm dumped a foot of snow and more in some areas of Illinois, with police scrambling to respond to dozens of accidents and forced scores of schools to remain closed.