Extreme Temperatures


Furious snow storm descends on Chicago - 1000 flights canceled

Mother Nature is apparently saving the best, or at least the biggest, for last. Chicago residents expected to find themselves in the midst of a storm that could wind up dumping as much as 10 inches of snow in the area before the end of Tuesday - the most since the 2011 blizzard and its more than 20 inches of snow. "This will be the biggest widespread storm of the winter," National Weather Service meteorologist Amy Seeley said. The forecast is for 8 to 10 inches throughout northeastern Illinois and northwest Indiana, a far cry from last March, which saw less than a half-inch of snow and was the warmest one on record in Illinois. Hardware stores in and around the city did brisk business Monday, selling salt and snow shovels at a time many usually turn their thoughts toward gardening and baseball.

"Everybody's got a little comment with every bag they're buying," said Mike McIntosh, who works at Dressel's Hardware in Oak Park just outside Chicago. Workers had started to stock the shelves with tools and supplies associated with spring and summer, only to find the shovels and salt they thought they'd hold for another year were still in demand. "Everybody's a bit surprised, but it's good for us, we've got a lot of this stuff to move," he said. On Monday, the system moved across the Dakotas and Minnesota, dropping up to a foot of snow in some areas and freezing rain in others. Some schools closed and officials warned motorists to stay off the roads.

Comet 2

Giant ice meteors fall from clear skies

Remains of an ice meteor on a factory roof in Spain.
20-pound chunks of ice falling on a sunny day? It's no urban myth.

Climate experts have long warned that global warming could bring an increase in extreme weather, such as hurricanes and drought. They never mentioned 20-pound chunks of ice falling from the clear blue sky, tearing through roofs, shattering windshields, and gouging impact craters. Yet reports of such "clear-sky ice fall events" have been on the rise worldwide in recent years, and in February Spanish researchers offered further evidence that the increase could be due to climate change.

Snowflake Cold

Snowstorm expected to cause hazardous travel over U.S. Midwest

© The Bismarck Tribune via APSnow-covered trees form a scenic canopy over Bismarck, N.D., on Monday, March 4, 2013, in the wake of a slow-moving winter storm that passed through the state.
A late-winter storm was expected to gum up travel Tuesday as it crept slowly across the Central and Midwest U.S. before heading east later in the week, forecasters said Monday.

The storm was expected to peter out by the time it hits New York and Boston later in the week, but not before it creates a mess for commuters from Upper Mississippi and Ohio River valleys eastward to the Atlantic Coast.

Significant snowfall will make travel dangerous Monday night and Tuesday in the Upper Midwest, especially around major cities like Minneapolis, Indianapolis and Chicago. The Weather Channel warned that major delays were likely Tuesday at O'Hare and Midway airports.

Chicago is expected to get its biggest snowfall of the season - as much as 10 inches by Tuesday evening. The National Weather Service said accumulation rates of one to two inches an hour beginning Tuesday morning would make "snow removal difficult and travel extremely dangerous."

"Consider only traveling if in an emergency," it said in issuing a winter storm warning for the city.

Unseasonably warm temperatures Monday melted some of the winter's snow in the Twin Cities of Minneapolis and St. Paul - just in time for a new blast of winter that could drop as much as 7 inches of new snow overnight and Tuesday.


Toronto breaks snowfall record for February 27, 2013

© MOMIN QURESHI/680NEWSGTA residents had a difficult time shovelling the heavy wet snow, Feb. 27, 2013
It's another sloppy drive to work and school Thursday morning as the slow-moving storm system that dumped record amounts of wet snow on the GTA Wednesday continues to hang around.

Snowfall record

Toronto broke a snowfall record for Feb. 27, according to Environment Canada.

At Pearson International Airport, 12.4 centimetres of the heavy wet snow covered the ground, breaking the record of 7.1 centimetres set in 1967.


Record snowfall in Amarillo,Texas

© AP Photo/The Amarillo Globe News, Michael Schumacher Brandon Green works through a 5-foot snow drift in his driveway, Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013 in Amarillo, Texas. The blizzard that hammered the nation's midsection broke a 120-year-old record in Amarillo for one-day snowfall in February with 19.1 inches.
The blizzard that hammered the nation's midsection broke a 120-year-old record in Amarillo for one-day snowfall in February with 19.1 inches.

National Weather Service meteorologist Krissy Scotten in Amarillo says the snowfall total Monday bested a record set Feb. 16, 1893, when 19 inches fell.

Snowflake Cold

Pacific storm pushes heavy snow, winds into Alberta, Saskatchewan

© Graham Hughes/The Canadian PressPoor road conditions are a concern today in Alberta and Saskatchewan.
Canada - The rain storm that drenched the B.C. South Coast over the past few days has become a snowstorm as it pushed over the prairies, bringing freezing rain, heavy snowfall and strong winds throughout the day today and Monday.

Precipitation from this system had already started to fall last night, in a line from west-central Alberta into southern Saskatchewan, with Edmonton reporting light rain in the evening and freezing rain around midnight. This switched over to all snow, heavy at times, overnight and continued to fall through the morning, with gusty winds causing blowing and drifting snow.

The storm is spreading into southern Alberta this morning. Heavy snowfall is expected at times throughout the day, dropping between 10-15 centimetres of snow by tonight, with blowing snow from winds gusting up to 70 km/h.


Living with Calcutta's record low temperatures

Cold Weather Calcutta_1
© Associated Press
Dressing for the cold has become a major talking point in Calcutta, where the temperatures are the lowest for a century. One piece of cold-weather gear appears to be de rigueur in this city - the monkey hat.

When my newspapers started arriving two hours late, I asked the delivery man why.

He replied: "No-one can get up early in this cold so why do you need your papers? Go with the flow."

At least I think that's what he said, I could hardly hear through my earmuffs.

When you think of India you think of heat - whether it is the country's temperature, or its food.

So how do people here cope with winter? Well, that varies from region to region.

When I asked a friend of mine from southern India they laughed as they replied: "We do not have a winter, it is always hot."

My family in Delhi - in the north, where the temperature really does drop - just shrugged their shoulders and said: "We are used to it".


Six people die as blizzards hit northern Japan

© AFP PhotoSnow-covered rooftops across a neighborhood in Tokyo on February 6, 2013. At least six people died in a spate of snow-related incidents as blizzards swept across the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido over the weekend, police and news reports said Sunday.
At least six people died in a spate of snow-related incidents as blizzards swept across the northern Japanese island of Hokkaido over the weekend, police and news reports said Sunday.

A 40-year-old woman and her three teenaged children were found dead late Saturday in a car buried under snow in the town of Nakashibetsu, eastern Hokkaido, a local police spokesman said.

They are believed to have died of carbon monoxide poisoning as the car's exhaust pipe and was blocked by snow and the windows were up, Kyodo News said, adding that snowfalls of more than two metres (6.6 feet) were recorded in the area.

Ice Cube

Massive ice balls attracting attention along Lake Michigan

Chicago - People in Michigan are enjoying a very cool winter sight.

Massive ice balls are washing ashore. They are created when pieces of ice break away from ice floes in the lake and are rounded off by waves.

Thousands of them have piled up near Good Harbor Bay where they have become quite an attraction for local residents and tourists.


Record snowfall buries parts of Japan under 5 metres of snow

Parts of Japan have been covered in more than five metres of snow this week. But the world record is still more than double that

© The Asahi ShimbunSnow to the depth of 5.15 metres is recorded in Aomori, Japan on February 21st.
This is proving a freakish year for weather, but Japan is having an odder time of it than most. The country has had a record winter for snow, and northern Japan is currently coated by unprecedented volumes of the white stuff - more than five metres at higher altitudes, with houses turned into igloos and roads into snow tunnels.

In the Hakkoda mountains the depth of snow has been measured at 5.61 metres - a record for Japan. Even lower down, in the city of Aomori, snow is standing at almost 1.5 metres and bulldozers are having to work round the clock.

Comment: From the BBC: