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Extreme Temperatures

Snowflake Cold

Record setting snow and brutal cold cause New Hampshire town to cancel ice carnival

cambridge MA blizzard
© Reuters/Brian Snyder
Pedestrians make their way along a snow covered street during a winter snow storm in Cambridge, Massachusetts in this file photo taken on February 9, 2015.
Following a series of record-setting snowfalls, New England on Friday got a new metric for how severe its winter has been: The town of Alton, New Hampshire called off its annual ice carnival due to a forecast calling for more snow and brutal cold.

"It'll be zero degrees and blowing snow, and that's not a good time for everybody," said Roger Sample, who owns a construction business in the town on the shores of New Hampshire's Lake Winnipesaukee and serves as the carnival's chairman.

The carnival, which Sample said has been held for more than two decades, typically draws about 1,000 visitors out onto the frozen lake's Alton Bay for games and rides, as well as to see small planes that land on the ice.

Comment: The northeast USA cannot seem to get a break from the record setting cold and snow, which shows no promise of ending soon:

Ice Cube

Ice breaker rushes to free vessel stuck in thick ice during Antarctic summer

© AP

Coast Guard Cutter Polar Star opens a channel through the ice.
Australian 207-foot ship, the Antarctic Chieftain, hit ice up to 10 feet thick and suffered propeller damage near the Ross Sea

A rescue vessel is rushing to free a damaged Australian fishing ship with 27 people aboard which has become trapped in thick Antarctic ice.

The 207-foot ship, the Antarctic Chieftain, suffered propeller damage after hitting a chunk of ice on February 7 in an isolated region near the Ross Sea, south-east of New Zealand. The ship, which is used for harvesting Patagonian toothfish, became stranded in ice floes up to 10 feet thick and lacked the power to break free.

Les Scott, managing director of Tasmanian-based Australian Longline, which owns the ship, said an underwater video inspection showed three of the four propeller blade tips were damaged. None of the crew has been injured.


Valentine's weekend blizzard to rage in Northeast; bitter cold, powerful winds, whiteout conditions possible

A storm moving through the Northeast during the Valentine's Day weekend will develop into a blizzard with snow, fierce wind and bitterly cold air.

While the first of two clipper storms this week will stay weak until swinging east of New England, the second clipper storm rolling in this weekend will strengthen significantly.

People on weekend ski trips or partaking in other travel from the Great Lakes to New England will run the risk of getting stuck in the storm and the frigid air moving in.

According to AccuWeather.com Senior Meteorologist Henry Margusity, "The storm could bring life-threatening conditions, especially in New England with very low temperatures and strong winds combining with snow to bring blizzard conditions."

Initially, light snow will move across the Midwest Friday night into Saturday. However, winds will increase after the snow begins as bitterly cold arctic air arrives and AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures plunge below zero F.

The snow and increasing wind will move into the central Appalachians during the day Saturday and will reach the Interstate-95 corridor in the mid-Atlantic and southern New England Saturday afternoon and evening.

As the storm reaches the Atlantic Ocean Saturday night, it will strengthen.

The storm has the potential to bring a moderate to heavy snowfall from the upper part of the mid-Atlantic to southern and central New England Saturday night into Sunday.

Ice Cube

Frigid air to bring harshest winter conditions to Midwest, East through mid-February

Waves of arctic air will bring the lowest temperatures and the harshest conditions of the winter from late this week through the middle of the month.

The arctic air will be pushed along by a couple of Alberta Clipper storms with rounds of light snow in parts of the Midwest and the potential for a couple of heavy snow events in part of the coastal Northeast.

In perspective, the benchmark low, or the coldest it has been thus far this winter, in New York City was 8 F, on Jan. 8. On that same day, the temperature dipped to minus 2 F in Detroit, minus 1 F in Boston, 11 F at Atlanta and 12 F at Washington, D.C.

Like the frigid air during early January, the waves of arctic air moving in could bring disruptions to some of the trains in the northern cities. The prolonged cold penetrating deep into the ground could also cause water main breaks from the Midwest to the Northeast.

According to AccuWeather Meteorologist Brian Lada, "The combination of frigid air will not only be painful to endure for short periods of time outdoors but can bring life-threatening conditions for those not properly dressed."

The dangers will range from difficulty breathing to frostbite and hypothermia.

The first blast of arctic air will sweep from the Midwest to the Atlantic coast through the end of the week.

During multiple days, temperatures will not climb above zero F in northern Minnesota and part of northern Michigan.

While on the coldest days temperatures will climb into the single digits and teens from Minneapolis to Chicago, Detroit, Pittsburgh and Boston, AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures will be below zero for many hours on multiple days. Actual nighttime low temperatures will dip below zero on occasion.

Comment: In January, an extraordinary amount of snow was dumped all over the world. It looks like February might do the same.

Checkout the latest SOTT Summary Video - January 2015: Extreme Weather, Earth Changes, and Fireballs

Snowflake Cold

Kitamaat Village evacuated following 3 days without power due to near record snowfall in British Columbia

© Amanda Debeurs.
Kitimat, British Columbia.
B.C.'s Haisla First Nation ordered the evacuation of Kitamaat Village and its 800 residents on Saturday night, three days after the community lost power following a major snowstorm.

Many residents are staying at the Kitimat Riverlodge Leisure Centre, about 15 kilometres north in the town of Kitimat.

Others are staying with family and friends.

The small towns of Kitimat and Terrace were hit with heavy snow earlier this week - nearly two metres of snow from a Pineapple Express weather system was dumped on the region.

The record for a 24-hour snowfall, set on Feb. 5, 1961, was 112 cm. Weather officials say Kitimat came close with 109 cm of snow in a 24-hour period.


Heavy snowfall traps over 200 motorists in Spain


Some people could be stranded for days
Spanish emergency services have rescued at least 220 people trapped by snow on roads in northern Spain.

Hundreds of cars were stuck for up to 17 hours overnight on roads between Cantabria and the province of Palencia.

Local media report temperatures of -15C (5F) and up 40cm (1.3ft) of snow.

Around 100 British expats and tourists were among those trapped. Spanish police rescued several stranded in their vehicles shortly after arrival in Santander by ferry from Portsmouth.

Many had come to Spain hoping for a warm-weather holiday, but ended up having to spend the night in the sports hall of a local school and the dining room of a hotel.

The country is in the middle of a cold spell that is expected to worsen over the next three days, with cold weather alerts issued for 20 provinces.

Snowflake Cold

Cold snap brings heavy snowfall to Italy

© MeteoWeb
Heavy snow fell across northern and central Italy on Thursday, causing travel problems and some schools to close, while the south was hit by floods and landslides.

Snowfall blanketing parts of Italy hampered travel plans, causing trains in north-west Piedmont and Liguria to be cancelled. So far 35 trains have been affected, including those on the Genoa and Turin lines, Tgcom24 reported.

The cold snap has, however, been good news for skiers, with up to 60cm of snow falling in the mountainous Cuneo province by the French border. Schools in the area have been closed for the rest of the week, MeteoWeb said.


Chicago experiences 10th snowiest winter on record

© Scott Olson/Getty Images
A man clears snow from the sidewalk in front of an apartment building on February 2, 2015 in Chicago, Illinois. Snow began falling in the city Sunday morning and did not stop until early Monday morning, leaving behind more than 19 inches. It was the fifth largest snowfall in the city’s history.
Not only was this weekend's blizzard the 5th largest snowstorm in the city's history, it also made the past week the 8th snowiest week on record for Chicago.

According to the National Weather Service, a total of 21.3 inches of snow was measured at O'Hare from Jan. 29 through Feb. 4. Virtually all of that - 19.3 inches - came during the snowstorm that started Saturday night and ended Monday morning.

Also thanks to the blizzard, this February is already the 10th snowiest on record in Chicago, with more than three weeks left until the end of the month.

With 36.7 inches of snow so far this winter in Chicago, we've already reached the normal snowfall for the entire average winter season in Chicago, meaning - despite no measurable snow in December - Chicago is virtually assured of having above normal snowfall this winter.

There will be a nice break from the snow during the next couple days. CBS 2 Meteorologist Megan Glaros reports no precipitation is expected for the next 24 to 48 hours.

While Thursday is the first time in the past eight days that Chicago won't get any snow, temperatures plunged below zero overnight.

Shortly before 8 a.m., the temperature dipped to 2 below zero at O'Hare International Airport, with a wind chill of 10 below.

It was even colder in some outlying suburbs, Thursday morning, with temperatures of as low as 14 below in Kankakee, and 16 below in Aurora.

The frigid conditions won't last long though. While Thursday's high will be only about 16 degrees, temperatures will return closer to normal the next several days, with a high of 32 on Friday, 35 on Saturday, and 32 on Sunday. Next week will start about the same, with highs in the upper 20s or lower 30s through Wednesday.


New statewide snowfall record set in Eastport, Maine: Over 6ft in 10 days

© Don Dunbar
Snow was piled up on sidewalks of Eastport on Tuesday, after a major storm brought several inches of snow to the small city in Washington County.
Seventy-six inches and counting.

That's how much snow has fallen in Eastport since Jan. 25, which is a new 10-day record for documented snowfall anywhere in Maine. The previous record of 71 inches was set more than 50 years ago at Ripogenus Dam, just west of Baxter State Park in Piscataquis County, over a 10-day period, from late December 1962 to early January 1963, according to the National Weather Service.

Victor Nouhan, a forecaster with the National Weather Service in Caribou, emphasized Wednesday the amount of data and information available to the federal agency is limited, so he cannot say whether Eastport's 76 inches is the most snowfall ever in Maine in a week and a half. He said the Fryeburg area got an exceptionally heavy dumping of snow in February 1969, which may rival the amount that officially has been measured in Eastport.

Ice Cube

New Brunswick braces for fourth snow storm in a week; state of emergency declared in Saint John

© Dan Culberson for The Globe and Mail
New Brunswick is bracing for another blast of snow after being battered by a third storm in less than a week.

A local state of emergency has been declared in the southern peninsula of Saint John, whose streets are piled high with snow. Environment Canada says more snow is expected to begin Wednesday night in some areas of New Brunswick and will continue well into Thursday.

Snow vs. Snow: How high is it?

So far this year, Saint John has seen more than 160 centimetres of snow. Normally, Saint John has 15 to 20 centimetres accumlated at this time of year. Environment Canada meteorologist Claude Cote said Wednesday night's incoming system could bring 15 to 25 more centimetres to the city.

For some perspective on how much snow that is: Here's how Saint John's recent snowfall compares with one of the city's most famous sons, actor Donald Sutherland. Recently renowned for playing President Coriolanus Snow in the Hunger Games film franchise, Mr. Sutherland is 6-foot-4, yet his hometown's piles of snow would nearly bury him.

Saint John's snowfall is also formidable when compared with the rest of Canada, parts of which saw less snow in a month than Atlantic Canada has seen in three days.

Atlantic Canada's snowy week
Saint John

Mayor Mel Norton says it was the first time in almost three decades that the city declared a state of emergency, which allows the city to ban on-street parking.

He says the state of emergency will be in effect for up to a week in the city's southern peninsula.

Comment: Listen to SOTT's interview with the authors of Earth Changes and the Human-Cosmic Connection, for an in depth look at the crazy weather we are having here on the planet and the possible human connections.