A historically powerful storm slammed into Western Alaska Friday night and into Saturday, bringing major flooding and high winds to a huge swath of coastal communities. By Saturday evening, the state said it had received no reports of injuries or deaths related to the storm. But damage had torn across hundreds of miles of Alaska’s coastline impacting communities all along the way. Alaskans described water flooding homes and roads. Wind tore off roofs. Houses floated off their foundations. Boats sank.
The creek slide is the latest environmental incident to strike the Kenai Peninsula this week: a massive landslide in Seward on May 7 continues to block Lowell Point Road, a wildfire broke out near Sportsman’s Landing on May 8 and a separate wildfire broke out on May 10 near Wildman’s.
All roads out of Iceland’s capital Reykjavík are closed due to extreme weather conditions, including Route 41, the road to Keflavík International Airport. A yellow weather alert is in effect across the country, with strong winds and snow showers expected to continue until tomorrow afternoon in most regions. Travel is discouraged across the country.
A steel-framed building was broken apart by wind in Hafnarfjörður on Friday, search & rescue teams attended over a hundred call-outs, and Hellisheiði and other important roads were closed once more. February was one of the coldest and windiest for many years.
A winter storm caused power outages and property damage across Iceland. Winds reached speeds of 40 meters per second (89 mph) in the Southwest region, though precipitation was less than forecasted. See related article: A total of ten waves of 25 meters high and four waves over 30 meters high were recorded. A 40 m wave was the highest recorded since 1990.
These windy conditions have started to negatively impact sea ice coverage in the Bering Strait. Based on satellite imagery and observations from residents across the region, more open water has started to appear along coastlines and thicker ice has been pushed around, climatologist Rick Thoman said. He noted that sea ice conditions are drastically different in the Bering Strait than they were five days ago.
A dangerous winter storm is whipping the East Coast with significant snowfall, strong thunderstorms and blustery winds. Meteorologists said a foot or more of snow fell in parts of New York state, Ohio and Pennsylvania through Monday.
Strong south winds hit 71 miles per hour in St. Michael, Shishmaref had its sea ice blown away and the Nome Airport saw 0.64 inches of precipitation – mostly in the form of rain - last weekend. The storm that hit on Saturday, Dec. 18 and continued all day Sunday brought the total precipitation for December thus far to 2.04 inches.
Unalakleet’s supply of water was running on empty following a nasty freeze-up at the end of December. Freezing rain led to a frozen pool of standing water that shifted the community’s pump house before the New Year. This dropped the flow of water into the water tank and levels were down to two feet earlier the first week of January.
Back-to-back winter storms hit Nome and the region with very strong, screaming winds and accompanying blowing snow. While the first storm on Friday seemed just like a warm up, the second storm hit the region with very strong winds that knocked out power in Wales, ripped buildings apart in Golovin and brought water levels up 6.73 feet over normal. The high winds also pushed away ice cover.
Strong winds whipped across Ketchikan Thursday evening and Friday morning, and a strong morning gust snapped power lines and severed Ketchikan’s connection to the Swan Lake hydropower reservoir.