Winter Storms Blow Across the Midwest
Hundreds of Flights Canceled Ahead of Frigid Blast
By DANA FIELDS, AP
KANSAS CITY, Mo. (Dec. 1) – The first major snowstorm of the season blew across the Plains and Midwest on Thursday, grounding hundreds of flights, closing schools, glazing highways and threatening to dump up to a foot of snow on communities that had basked in balmy weather only days earlier.
The wintry weather spread across an area stretching from Texas and Oklahoma to Michigan, and a blizzard warning was posted in parts of Oklahoma.
Clay Ender, who works for a heating service company, struggled to get around in the 3 inches of snow that fell overnight in Lubbock, Texas. A trip across the city that usually takes 20 minutes stretched to an hour, he said.
“There were so many cars spinning out of control,” he said. “They couldn’t get any traction.”
The system roared through the Northwest and Rockies earlier in the week. Coming on the heels of near-record high temperatures, it rolled through Kansas on Wednesday, coating tree limbs and power lines with half an inch of ice. By Thursday, the storm was moving northeast from Oklahoma on the way to Illinois.
Sleet, snow and freezing rain forced the cancellation of 200 flights out of Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport and closed some schools. In the Texas Panhandle, roads were covered with ice and up to 7 inches of snow.
Northern Oklahoma expected to receive 8 to 12 inches of snow, while parts of Illinois prepared for 6 to 12 inches. Varying amounts were also forecast for Missouri, Kansas and Arkansas.
The full story can be read here.
Cold in Chicago!
You’ve heard it many times, but every year, drivers in these climates make the same mistakes or overlook the likely weather patterns:
1) Check the local weather forecast daily during storm season!
2) Carry tire chains or “tracks” and learn how to put them on your vehicle. Better still, have an extra set of studded tires and use them during the storm season!
3) Be reasonably certain that your automobile is in a good state of repair, keep a near full tank of gasoline (petrol), and know it’s limitations! Your life may depend on it!
4) Use practical defensive driving techniques: if you don’t know if/where there is black (invisible) ice on the highway, drive slowly, or better still avoid any unnecessary trips! If you don’t know the condition of the highway, look it up on the internet, tv, radio, weather radio, call a friend, stop and ask at a service station, etc.!
5) When beginning your journey, in a place where there is no traffic, at a suitable low speed, say 10 miles per hour (16 kilometer per hour) apply your brakes and see how much or if you slide. Try it at 20 mph (32 kph) and so forth, and adjust your driving accordingly. Above all, drive downhill or curves not banked SLOWER than normal. Remember the weight and momentum of your vehicle wants to continue in the direction you are initially moving (downhill or in a straight line)!
8) Above all, don’t lie to yourself about your skill driving…don’t be afraid to ask advice of a more experienced, helpful, non-boastful driver who avoids unnecessary risks, your safety depends on it!
7) Remember, it’s the weather, it’s not going away…EVER! Deal with it!
Cold in Tulsa!!