U.S. told to brace for extreme winter weathergreenspun.com : LUSENET : Grassroots Information Coordination Center (GICC) : One Thread
Posted at 5:14 p.m. PST Tuesday, Dec. 19, 2000
U.S. told to brace for extreme winter weather WASHINGTON (Reuters) - An early blast of winter storms that has frozen many parts of the United States is only a preview of what Mother Nature has in store for the rest of the season, government metrologists said Tuesday.
Jack Kelly, director of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's National Weather Service, said extreme conditions were expected this winter in the northern Plains, upper Midwest, Great Lakes, northern Rockies and parts of the Northwest.
``The recent cold spell, including the ice storms, is an example of what most of the nation will likely face throughout the winter,'' Kelly told reporters at a briefing on the government's winter weather outlook.
``Take precautions now to prepare for this winter, because it's here,'' he added.
Across much of the United States this week snow, sleet and bone-chilling temperatures have shut-down schools, played havoc for travelers and left thousands without power. In Washington, an aircraft carrying President-elect George W. Bush was delayed at Dulles airport while snow was cleared from the runway.
The wintry weather even dipped into the heart of the American South with Alabama, Arkansas and Georgia all hard hit by an icy blast. At least 3 inches of wet snow fell on northern Georgia.
``As we progress through the winter, there is a good chance of seeing a couple more major cold outbreaks, and considerable swings in temperature and precipitation across the nation,'' Kelly said.
In the next two weeks, more precipitation -- including more snow -- is expected from Texas to the Carolinas to New England, NOAA said. The Pacific Northwest can expect more heavy rain.
The wintry weather comes on the heels of a November that NOAA said was the second coldest on record.
-- Martin Thompson (firstname.lastname@example.org), December 20, 2000