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The United States is gearing up for Wild Weather Week

Much of the central United States, from the Rocky Mountains to the Midwest, was braced for blizzard-like conditions on Tuesday, while states further south were warned of the risk of flash flooding and tornadoes from a storm. massive blowing across the country.

An area stretching from Montana west to Nebraska and Colorado was under a blizzard warning, and the National Weather Service said up to 2 feet of snow was possible in parts of western South Dakota and northwestern Nebraska. Meanwhile, ice and sleet were expected across the eastern Great Plains.

The National Weather Service warned that up to about a half inch of ice could form and winds could blow up to 45 miles per hour in parts of Iowa, Minnesota and South Dakota. Power outages, damaged trees, falling branches and dangerous traveling conditions threatened the area.

“It’s kind of a ‘we’re not kidding’ storm,” South Dakota’s Department of Public Safety said Monday in a tweet urging people to stock up on essentials and then stay home for a while. once the storm hit.

The weather is part of the same system that dumped heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada over the weekend before moving east.

Portions of Interstate 90 and Interstate 29 across South Dakota were scheduled to be closed by mid-morning Tuesday due to “freezing rain, large snow totals, low visibility, windblown snow and high winds,” the state Department of Transportation said. Secondary highways will likely become “impassable,” he said.

Those further south in Texas and Louisiana could receive heavy rain with flash flooding, hail and tornadoes by Tuesday, the National Weather Service said. The storm was expected to continue southeast into Florida later in the week.

“It will be a busy week as this system moves across the country,” said Marc Chenard, meteorologist at National Weather Service headquarters in College Park, Maryland.

The weather is part of the same system that dumped heavy snow in the Sierra Nevada over the weekend before moving east.

People walk in the snow.
Traveling during the storm can be extremely dangerous, warns the National Weather Service.

In northern Utah, a tour bus crashed Monday morning as snow and freezing temperatures blanketed the area. The bus flipped onto its side in Tremonton after the driver lost control while changing lanes, the state Highway Patrol said in a statement. Highway Patrol said 23 passengers were injured, some seriously.

Thousands of students from Native American communities in Wyoming, Nebraska and the Dakotas traveled to Rapid City, South Dakota, for this week’s Lakota Nation Invitational, a high school athletic event. Brian Brewer, one of the organizers, said he urged schools and attendees to travel early.

“We told them with this storm coming – if you go tomorrow, chances are you won’t,” he said Monday.

People are playing in the snow.
The storm warning is expected to end late Monday evening.

In northern California, most mountain highways had reopened Monday. The remaining warnings in the mountains of southern California were set to expire late Monday evening, the National Weather Service said.

More than a week into winter, it was the last fall storm to bring significant rainfall to California, which is dealing with the effects of years of drought that have prompted calls for water conservation .

The UC Berkeley Central Sierra Snow Lab northwest of Lake Tahoe reported the storm dropped 54.5 inches of snow.

The Sierra’s snowpack, which averages at its peak on April 1, is normally an important source of water when it melts in the spring. Throughout the drought, experts have cautioned against optimism about early-season storms as climate change makes once-average conditions rare.

Last year, a powerful atmospheric river dumped huge amounts of rain on California in October, and a wet expanse in December left parts of the Sierra Nevadas buried in snow. Then the state had its driest January to April on record.

New York Post

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