Cross country skiing near US Capitol, Washington, DC, USA, 13 Jan 2018 (Twitter/Nathanaj80)
A major winter storm brought heavy snow and mixed precipitation from the American Midwest to the mid-Atlantic states over the weekend.
The snow began falling in Kansas and Missouri with some areas getting almost 50 cm.
The storm knocked out power, disrupted air travel and created slippery highways with numerous collisions including an Illinois crash which killed a police officer.
Freezing rain led to a build-up of ice on surfaces in North Carolina and Virginia.
Between 15 and 30 cm of snow fell over the Washington, DC area – its heaviest snowfall in three years – which closed schools and federal government offices on Monday.
Forecasters say melting during the day would create hazardous black ice after sunset as temperatures fell back below freezing.
The storm system has moved out into the Atlantic but will brush Cape Breton Island and eastern Newfoundland on Tuesday.
Man cuts fallen tree blocking a road in South Carolina, 09 Dec 2018 (Reuters)
Several deaths have been reported after a massive snowstorm buried parts of the Southeastern United States with more than 30 cm falling in several major cities to as much as 60 cm in the Appalachian Mountains.
North Carolina and Virginia were especially hard hit by the storm system which slowly moved out into the Atlantic Ocean today.
Highways became hazardous as snowy, icy conditions led to hundreds of collisions, dozens of flights were cancelled and schools and businesses shut down.
About 300,000 customers also lost electricity during the peak as the storm knocked trees onto power lines.
The 2018 Atlantic hurricane season is shifting into high gear as it often does this month.
Florence is the newest storm to pose a threat and the Category 3 storm is now churning toward Bermuda.
Some computer models are suggesting Florence could impact the U.S. Eastern Seaboard by the middle of next week.
Even if Florence stays out to sea, forecasters say numerous other systems are developing over the Atlantic as the hurricane season reaches its average peak on September 10th.
Tropical Storm Philippe, the 16th named storm and 18th tropical system of the 2017 Atlantic hurricane season, is no more according to the U.S. National Hurricane Center.
The storm brought heavy rain to central Cuba and the Bahamas in addition to spawning several tornadoes when it crossed south Florida.
Sustained winds reached 95 km/h with higher gusts reported before Philippe weakened over the western Atlantic.
However, Environment Canada says the remnants are combining with a low pressure system which will bring strong winds and heavy rain to New Brunswick on Monday.
Schools and businesses closed in Ireland when the remnants of Hurricane Ophelia brought destructive winds up to 160 km/h which downed trees and power lines creating widespread power outages.
Flights, ferries and even buses were cancelled and at least three deaths are attributed to the storm which officials say is the worst to hit Ireland in 50 years.
Strong winds also caused disruptions in Scotland and northern England where rail services were halted after fallen trees blocked lines.
Ophelia formed in the eastern Atlantic on 11 October and became a Category 3 hurricane three days later.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center says Ophelia was the furthest east ever recorded for an Atlantic hurricane.
The parade of hurricanes in the Atlantic continues with Maria making landfall late tonight over the eastern Caribbean island nation of Dominica as a powerful category 5 storm packing sustained winds of 260 km/h.
The U.S. National Hurricane Center is outlying a path for Maria which is eerily similar to the recent Hurricane Irma with the U.S and British Virgin Islands and Puerto Rico expected to be impacted on Wednesday.
Maria will be accompanied by a dangerous storm surge and between 300-500 mm (12-20 inches) of rain to some of the islands causing life-threatening flash floods and mudslides.
Meantime, Hurricane Jose is still churning northward as a category 1 storm with heavy surf and rip currents along the U.S East Coast from North Carolina to Massachusetts.
Canadian forecasters say the remnants of Jose have already brought high humidity to the Maritimes and will give Nova Scotia persistent moisture and cloud cover as well as rough surf along the Atlantic coast.
The impact of Hurricane Irma in Miami, FL, USA, 10 Sept 2017 (AP)
Irma was downgraded from a hurricane to a tropical storm today after slamming Florida with destructive wind, heavy rain, flash flooding, high storm surges and even tornadoes.
Irma, one of the most powerful hurricanes ever recorded in the Atlantic Ocean, made landfall over the Florida Keys on Sunday before coming ashore near Naples and then heading up the state’s west coast.
Miami was not in the storm’s direct path but was still battered by strong winds which swayed high rise buildings, brought down three construction cranes and downtown streets were swamped.
In northeast Florida, Jacksonville had historic flooding after the swollen St. Johns River spilled its banks and officials said dangerous conditions were expected for several days.
Prior to arriving in the United States, Irma claimed 10 lives in Cuba according to state media after battering Havana and tourist resorts such as Varadero and Cayo Coco where the international airport was destroyed.
The U.S. National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration is predicting hurricane activity in the North Atlantic Ocean in 2017 is likely to be above normal (45 percent) or near-normal (35 percent).
The Canadian Hurricane Centre says it responds to 4 or 5 tropical cyclone events each year on average, with 1 or 2 of those affecting Canadian land and another 2 or 3 threatening offshore waters.
Hurricanes are typically a greater concern in Canadian waters later in the season but the Canadian Hurricane Centre monitors the Atlantic Ocean year‑round for any tropical or tropical‑like cyclone that could pose a threat to Canada or its waters.
Sunset at Parlee Beach, NB, 05 Sept 2016 (Dearing)
The warmth of summer is expected to continue well into September in Southeast New Brunswick according to Environment Canada.
Meteorologists say the waters surrounding the Maritimes (Bay of Fundy, Atlantic Ocean, Northumberland Strait and Gulf of St.Lawrence) are about 2-3 Celsius above normal for this time of year.
Warm water generates energy which will help elevate temperatures throughout the region.
Precipitation is difficult to predict at this time of year since remnants of a post-tropical storm could easily deliver a hefty rainfall in just a few hours.
Post-Tropical Storm Colin, 08 June 2015 (CTV/Twitter)
By the time Colin had arrived in Canadian waters earlier today, it had become a post-tropical storm – essentially a strong low pressure system.
Much of Florida had received heavy rain from Colin before the storm moved into the Atlantic Ocean and tracked northeastward.
Wind was not a factor for the Maritimes but heavy rain fell in eastern Nova Scotia, Cape Breton Island and Newfoundland.
Greater Moncton received less than 20 mm of rain between remnants of Colin and another low pressure system which was crossing New Brunswick.
Colin was the third named storm of the 2016 Atlantic Hurricane Season – after Bonnie in late May and Alex in mid-January.