Thursday, March 1, 2018

Clashing Storms Bring Record Snow and Cold To Europe

Deutsche Welle reports:
        Across Europe on Thursday, flights were delayed, trains canceled and roads blocked as Storm Emma tracked north from the coast of Portugal over France bringing 150 kilometer-per-hour (93 mile-per-hour) wind gusts, gales and snow for the weekend. 
         The storm from the south was tracking a path that would have it collide with the "Beast from the East," which has brought blizzards from Siberia and freezing temperatures to Europe. 
         Unusually warm temperatures over the Arctic have weakened the jet stream that usually brings warm air in from the Atlantic to Ireland and Britain, allowing the icy winds from the east to dominate the weather over Europe. 
         Europe's coldest temperature was recorded by the Norwegian Meteorological Institute on Thursday at -41.8 degrees Celsius (-43.25 Fahrenheit) in the southeast of the country. 
        Irish Prime Minister Leo Varadkar urged people to get home early on Thursday afternoon and stay home until the storm passed. He said the forecast predicted blizzards, 100 kph winds, zero visibility and deep pockets of snow.
        The "Beast from the East" is a strong storm system that has swept west from Siberia into Europe bringing bone aching cold and record snowfall throughout all Europe. As for the that storm system, Deutsche Welle had reported that "[e]ven countries used to dealing with extreme weather such as Denmark and Sweden have recorded the worst conditions of the winter." Naples, Italy, has seen the most snow since 1956 and record snowfall in northern Croatia. Geneva, Switzerland's airport was temporarily closed due to snow. Per the article, "[t]emperatures across Europe fell to below -20 Celsius (-4 Fahrenheit) overnight into Wednesday and overnight Sunday to -40C in the Italian Alps at Campoluzzo." Also: "Belgium and Switzerland both recorded their coldest nights of the winter so far" and "[t]he Norwegian municipality Folldal in the south-eastern county of Hedmark on Thursday recorded Europe's coldest temperature - the mercury there also plunged to -41.8C." Ireland and Scotland were looking at receiving 10 inches of snow by today.

        To someone from Montana, North Dakota or Wisconsin, this may sound like a typical winter. But for Europe, which generally has more mild weather, it has been a shock. 

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