Some schools close for the day. Media get excited. Climate spin doctors have work to do.
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Heavy snow fell in southern California on Friday, as the first blizzard in a generation pounded the Los Angeles area, with heavy rains threatening flooding in other places, reports Phys.org.
Breathless television weather presenters more used to delivering a same-every-day forecast of warm sunshine found themselves knee-deep in the white stuff as the region grappled with its worst winter storm for decades.
Major roads were closed as ice and snow made them impassable, including sections of Interstate 5, the main north-south highway that connects Mexico, the United States and Canada.
Authorities said there was no estimate when it would be re-opened.
“Dangerous and potentially life-threatening snow related impacts are likely for mountain, desert, and foothill roadways in southern California,” the National Weather Service (NWS) said.
“Multiple rounds of heavy snowfall coupled with strong winds will lead to blizzard conditions over some of the higher terrain and mountain passes.
“Areas very close to the Pacific Coast and also into the interior valleys that are not accustomed to seeing snow, may see some accumulating snowfall.”
Snow and high winds brought down power lines, knocking out the lights for 118,000 customers in California, according to poweroutage.us.
Television stations dispatched their presenters to mountain areas, where some reported on traffic misery and others chatted with gleeful children given the day off school.
Social media platforms were inundated with pictures of varying amounts of snow in gardens, as residents marveled at the winter weather.
The NWS offered a Twitter tutorial for Californians struggling to put a name to the unusual white stuff spoiling the view of palm trees.
“Wondering what kind of frozen precipitation is falling from the sky in your area (assuming you are at a higher elevation)? Here is an informative graphic… that distinguishes between graupel and hail,” NWS Los Angeles tweeted.
Hail (“hard & solid”) is “frozen raindrops of ice from thunderstorms,” while graupel (“soft & wet”) is “snowflakes that collect supercooled water droplets on the outer surface,” the agency informed readers.
Full report here.
via Tallbloke’s Talkshop
February 25, 2023 at 04:00AM