Monday, February 26, 2024
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Coast to Coast, a Brutal Mix of Snow, Rain and Bitter Cold

With frigid temperatures starting to spread, more than 30 million people were under winter weather advisories on Saturday. 

*Midwest: Heavy Snowfall and Chilling Winds* 

Residents in Billings, Montana woke up to a bone-chilling temperature of 25 degrees Fahrenheit below zero. Meanwhile, Des Moines saw homeowners battling icy storms, digging through snow, and confronting winds at 45 miles per hour. Coastal towns and cities on the East Coast were bracing for possible flooding due to ongoing heavy rain. Communities near the Gulf Coast were preparing for deep freezes. 

*National Weather Service Alerts 30 Million Americans* 

On Saturday, more than 30 million Americans were under weather advisories, facing everything from rain and strong winds to heavy snowfall. The anticipation is for the coldest conditions ever recorded for a significant part of the United States. 

*Regional Updates: Midwest* 

Until Saturday morning, Iowa, along with most parts of North Dakota, South Dakota, and Nebraska, experienced the effective warning of a snowy tempest. 

*Transportation Disruptions and Power Outages* 

In Iowa, many rural roads were impassable, and several roads were closed in the eastern part of the state. PowerOutage.us reported over 300,000 homes without electricity in the Great Lakes region on Saturday morning. Kansas City, hosting the playoff game between the Bills and the Pittsburgh Steelers on Saturday night, expected temperatures “well below zero” during kickoff. 

*Northeast: Rain and Flooding* 

New York, New Jersey, and parts of Connecticut received nearly two inches of rain since Friday, with more expected in some areas on Saturday. Flooding occurred in some parts of New Jersey on Friday night, requiring evacuations near the Passaic River in Paterson and Little Falls. 

*New England: Thousands Without Power* 

Saturday also left thousands in the dark in New England as the third significant storm of the week passed through the region. Most disruptions were in Vermont, Rhode Island, and New Hampshire, where winds reached 30 miles per hour or more overnight. 

*South: Preparing for Icy Conditions* 

Governor Kathy Hochul declared a state of emergency in New York due to heavy rain, and several rivers experienced a rise of one to two feet, with further increases expected by Sunday afternoon. 

*West: Upcoming Winter Storm and Flooding Threats* 

Another concern is snow. As another winter storm approaches the West, mountainous areas will see crucial snowfall. Heavy rain is also predicted in several states, including Oregon, which may experience flooding on Saturday night and into Sunday. 

*Texas: Preparing for Subzero Temperatures* 

In Texas, officials are preparing for subzero temperatures as a significant cold front moves southward in the latter part of the Martin Luther King Jr. holiday weekend. Eastern Texas, Arkansas, and Louisiana are expected to see a wintry mix of precipitation, including rain, freezing rain, and snow from Sunday to Monday. 

The diverse challenges posed by this weekend’s weather underscore the geographical and climatic contrasts across the United States. Each region faces its unique set of obstacles, from snow-covered roads to power outages and flood risks, prompting residents and authorities to stay vigilant and prepared. 

Mountain States: Concerns about flooding and freezing temperatures

Temperatures in Montana are forecast to drop as low as minus 40 or perhaps minus 50 degrees this weekend. The central plains are predicted to be affected by the chilly air that will linger until Monday. The meteorological scenario is further complicated by concerns about flooding in some parts of Montana on Saturday.

Rain and Snow in the Pacific Northwest

In the Pacific Northwest, another winter storm is predicted, posing a new challenge. While low-lying areas, including Oregon, may experience severe rain on Saturday night and Sunday, the mountains are preparing for crucial snow accumulation. A nationwide emphasis on the complex character of the weather disturbances is highlighted by the issuance of flood warnings.

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