A historic winter storm is affecting a large portion of the United States, including the US-Canadian border, the Gulf Coast, the Pacific Northwest, and the East Coast. It is estimated that over 200 million people are under some form of winter weather advisory or warning.
The winter storm is causing a variety of impacts, including thousands of canceled flights, warming shelters at capacity, and blizzard conditions. High winds are also producing dangerous wind chill readings, with some areas experiencing wind chills as low as minus 36 degrees Fahrenheit. There is also the potential for power outages due to the expected high winds, heavy snow, significant icing, and overall increased power consumption.
Many people are being impacted by the winter storm, including those who have had their flights canceled, those who have lost power in their homes, and those who have had to seek shelter in warming centers. The issue of homelessness amid freezing temperatures has also sparked online conversations about how to get more people off the streets in these dangerous conditions.
The winter storm is being caused by a bomb cyclone, which is a rapidly intensifying storm that is created when atmospheric pressure drops quickly. The bomb cyclone is bringing blizzard conditions, including heavy snow and high winds, to the affected areas.
Officials and organizations are taking a variety of measures to respond to the winter storm. The National Weather Service is issuing winter weather advisories and warnings to alert people to the potential hazards. Some states, such as Wyoming, have deployed highway maintainers, snowplow drivers, and other personnel to help keep roads clear and safe. Warming centers are also being made available for those who need a warm place to stay.
The Storm of the Century was a powerful blizzard that affected the East Coast of the United States in March 1993. It was characterized by heavy snow, strong winds, and extreme cold, and it caused widespread damage and loss of power. The storm was responsible for more than 270 deaths and $11.3 billion in inflation-adjusted damage.
The Cleveland Superbomb was a strong nontropical storm that hit the Midwest and Ohio Valley in 1978. It was accompanied by extremely cold temperatures and strong winds, and it caused heavy snowfall and widespread damage. The storm is known for its particularly low pressure and high winds, which gusted up to 80 mph. It resulted in more than 70 deaths and disrupted infrastructure in the affected regions.
The Great Appalachian Storm was an intense storm system that affected the Northeast, Great Lakes, and Ohio Valley in 1950. It was powered by a massive dip in the jet stream and was characterized by extreme cold, strong winds, and heavy snowfall. The storm caused severe coastal flooding and erosion, and it set statewide single-storm snowfall records in West Virginia and Ohio. It is estimated to have caused more than 350 deaths and to have been the costliest weather event in U.S. history at the time.
The Blizzard of 1888 was a severe blizzard that affected New York and southern New England in March 1888. It was characterized by heavy snow, low temperatures, and strong winds, and it caused widespread damage and disrupted transportation. The blizzard was particularly severe in New York City, where it dropped up to 3 feet of snow and caused temperatures to plummet to 6 degrees. In Upstate New York and portions of Connecticut, the storm dumped 45 to 60 inches of snow.
The Schoolhouse Blizzard, also known as the Children’s Blizzard, was a major blizzard that hit the Great Plains in January 1888. It was characterized by a rapid drop in temperature, strong winds, and fine, powdery snow that was easily blown around. The blizzard struck unexpectedly and caught many people, including schoolchildren, off guard. It is estimated to have caused more than 200 deaths, many of them schoolchildren who were caught outside when the storm hit.