Arctic blast: Snow, record-breaking cold temperatures; Across U.S., flights cancelled, at least 4 deaths blamed on weather – CBS News
An arctic blast could shatter more than 300 records across the U.S. as it brings freezing temperatures to nearly 222 million Americans. The dangerous weather on Monday caused accidents and travel delays in the Midwest.
Nearly 6 inches of snow fell in Chicago, where a plane slid off the runway at O’Hare International Airport. None of the passengers or crew members were injured, officials said.
“The coldest we can be”
The National Weather Service said Tuesday and Wednesday may see record cold from the southern Plains to the Mississippi Valley to the Great Lakes and beyond, thanks to what it calls an “arctic airmass” that started in Siberia and has been spilling over a big chunk of the Midwest and East Coast.
There will still be plenty of snow into Tuesday in parts of the Northeast as the weather service reported the region may see up to a foot of snow, creating what it called “hazardous travel conditions.”
Meanwhile, temperatures were forecast below freezing as far south as the Texas Gulf Coast.
Records are expected to be broken in Chicago, as well. Weather service meteorologist Kevin Birk said the high for the Windy City is expected to reach 21 degrees, which is seven degrees lower than the previous record set for Nov. 12. Low temperatures in Illinois, Wisconsin and Iowa could drop into the single digits, according to Birk.
“This is an air mass that’s more typical for the middle of January than mid-November,” said Birk. “It is pretty much about the coldest we can be this time of year (and) it could break records all over the region.”
– The Associated Press
4 deaths linked to poor driving conditions
At least four people have been killed Monday in car crashes linked to snow, ice and poor driving conditions, officials said.
In Michigan, three people were killed in a two-vehicle car crash, according to a Facebook post from the Eaton County Sheriff’s Department. “It is believed that the very poor road conditions were a factor in this crash, however, it remains under investigation,” the sheriff’s office wrote.
In Kansas, an 8-year-old girl was killed when a car lost control on an icy highway, according to the Kansas Highway Patrol. The car crossed the center line and hit the vehicle carrying the child head-on, causing another vehicle to rear-end her car.
More than a foot of snow expected in parts of the Northeast
More than a foot of snow is expected in parts of the Northeast in the coming days. The National Weather Service said northernmost Maine could see 10 to 14 inches of snow through Tuesday, and parts of central and northern Vermont could also see up to a foot of snow.
Lesser amounts are expected in northern New Hampshire and parts of the western Maine mountains and foothills. Other areas will see a mix of freezing rain and only an inch or two of snow.
Temperatures will dip into the single digits Tuesday night in the northern half of Maine and New Hampshire. The cold temperatures will continue Wednesday before warming a bit later in the week.
— The Associated Press
More than 1,000 flights canceled in Chicago
Airlines at O’Hare and Midway airports have canceled more than 1,000 flights amid snowy conditions, CBS Chicago reported.
The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory, which was in effect until 2 p.m. Total accumulations are expected to reach 3 to 6 inches, with the heaviest snowfall expected over the northern and central parts of the Chicago area. Snow totals were expected to amount to 2 to 4 in the city.
A daily record was set for snowfall at O’Hare by midday with 3.4 inches of measurable snow. Average delays are over 90 minutes at O’Hare and less than 15 minutes at Midway.
Snow wreaks havoc on St. Louis rush hour
Sixty-one crashes were reported near the St. Louis metro area Monday as snow began to fall, CBS affiliate KMOV-TV reports. Nine people were injured in the crashes, according to the Missouri Highway Patrol Troop.
The snow also worsened traffic on a number of interstates. On one interstate, a jack-knifed tractor-trailer blocked all eastbound traffic, KMOV reports. On another, an overturned tractor-trailer blocked all but one eastbound lane.
The city is under a winter weather advisory until 6 p.m. CST, with 1 to 2 total inches of snow expected. Winds are expected to reach up to 30 mph. The National Weather Service warned that “the rapid fall of temperatures into the 20s could result in a flash freeze of untreated roads, bridges and overpasses.”
Plane skids off runway in Chicago
An American Airlines flight from Greensboro, North Carolina, slid off a runway at Chicago’s O’Hare International Airport on Monday morning after its landing gear snapped. None of the 38 passengers or three crew members were injured.
“I think everybody was just holding their breath because we didn’t know what was coming. A lot of people were bracing for it, grabbing the seats in front of us,” passenger Shaun Steele told CBS Chicago.
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