In the United States, a dangerous winter storm is likely to sow chaos this Christmas
In the city of Denver, temperatures are expected to reach a 30-year low.
A A powerful winter storm is expected to batter much of the United States this weekend, threatening to wreak havoc just as tens of millions of Americans plan to travel for the holiday season. x27;year.
The storm was expected to begin building overnight Wednesday, strengthen through Friday and persist through the Christmas weekend, bringing with it extremely low temperatures, snowfall and strong winds over a large northern and eastern part of the country, according to the US Weather Service (NWS).
This is a once-in-a-generation storm, its local agency in Buffalo, New York, warned on Twitter.
The Midwest and the Great Lakes region will be particularly affected this weekend, with blizzards.
The mercury should drop very sharply in just a few hours, and reach a felt temperature of up to -55°C in the Great Plains region.
“Cold of this magnitude could cause frostbite on exposed skin within minutes, as well as hypothermia and death if exposure is prolonged.
— The United States Weather Service
In the city of Denver, where temperatures are expected to reach a 30-year low, authorities have transformed a huge covered room, the Denver Coliseum, as a refuge for those in need of shelter and warmth.
The Denver Coliseum has been transformed into a refuge for those in need of shelter and warmth.
Gusts can also blow up to 80 km/h, causing possible falling trees and power cuts.
The private weather site AccuWeather warns of the possible formation of a cyclonic bomb, formed by the meeting of polar air with a mass of warmer air, causing a very rapid drop in pressure.
These conditions will be very dangerous for travel, whether by road or air, the NWS warned.
But starting Thursday, millions of Americans are expected at airports across the country, with the holiday season expected to be busier this year than in 2021, with a return to pre-pandemic levels , according to the Transportation Security Agency (TSA).
As many as 47,500 flights were scheduled in the United States for Thursday alone, according to the United States Aviation Authority (FAA).
United Airlines has encouraged customers to check their flight status, and even change it free of charge if possible.
The storm will clearly cause disruption, including delays, US Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg said in a television interview. be crowded, with 102 million Americans having to drive to where they will be spending the holidays, according to the American Automobile Association (AAA).
In total, about 112 million people must travel at least 80 km between December 23 and January 2, according to this organization, the third highest level since it began counting in 2000.
Cold weather watches and alerts have been issued in portions of at least 26 states, according to the NWS, and extend from the border with Canada to the border with Canada. to the Gulf of Mexico coast in Texas.
Snow is not the most worrying thing about this storm, but rather the cold and the winds. The heaviest snowfall is expected over the Great Lakes region between Wednesday evening and Friday, with just over 30 centimeters expected.
In February 2021, freezing cold set in x27; was down on Texas in particular, causing a surge in energy consumption followed by massive power cuts lasting several days.
The meteorological services this time wanted reassuring in this State, the temperatures should be less low and for less time than during this episode.