News / USA

Chicago Braces for Storm that Buried US Plains

City snow plows clear 23rd Street in Lawrence, Kansas, Feb. 26, 2013.
City snow plows clear 23rd Street in Lawrence, Kansas, Feb. 26, 2013.
Reuters
A potent winter storm that buried much of the U.S. Plains and left at least three people dead moved into Chicago on Tuesday, forcing hundreds of flight cancellations and raising the specter of a nightmarish evening commute.
    
The National Weather Service's Chicago office issued a winter weather advisory from noon through 9 p.m. Central time.
    
Forecasters predicted the storm, which packs a dangerous mix of wet snow, sleet, rain and high winds, would reach peak intensity around the evening rush hour, reducing visibility and creating treacherous driving conditions.
    
The Illinois Tollway agency, which maintains nearly 300 miles of highway around Chicago, said it was mobilizing its fleet of more than 180 snowplows in anticipation of the storm, which was expected to dump as much as 6 inches of wet snow north of the city.
    
At Chicago's O'Hare International Airport, sleet and low clouds on the front end of the storm were causing delays of nearly two-and-a-half hours, according to Flightaware.com, and nearly 300 arrivals and departures were canceled at O'Hare and Chicago's Midway Airport.
    
In Oklahoma, Texas and parts of Kansas, where some residents were still digging out from a winter storm last week, the storm dumped up to 17 inches (43 cm) of snow on Amarillo, Texas, and whipped Kansas City, Missouri, with winds of up to 30 miles (48 km) per hour.
    
Highways in the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles and parts of Kansas remained closed because of heavy and drifting snow.
    
Forecasters with the National Weather Service said the storm would dump three to five inches of wet snow on Detroit overnight and into Wednesday morning.
    
The storm has contributed to at least three deaths, two in Kansas and one in Oklahoma.
    
A woman died and three passengers were injured Monday night on Interstate 70 when their pickup truck rolled off the icy roadway in Ellis County, Kansas Governor Sam Brownback said. Earlier Monday, a man was killed when his car veered off the interstate in Sherman County near the Colorado border, he said.

"We urge everyone to avoid travel and be extremely cautious if you must be on the roads,'' said Ernest Garcia, superintendent of the Kansas Highway Patrol.
    
In northern Oklahoma, one person died when the roof of a home partially collapsed in the city of Woodward, said Matt Lehenbauer, the city's emergency management director.

"We have roofs collapsing all over town,'' said Woodward Mayor Roscoe Hill Jr. "We really have a mess on our hands.''
    
Kansas City was also hard hit by the storm, which dumped as much as 13 inches of snow on some parts of the metro region on Tuesday, said Chris Bowman, meteorologist for the National Weather Service.
    
Bowman said another one to three inches could fall Tuesday evening and nearly two-thirds of the flights at Kansas City International Airport Tuesday afternoon were canceled.
    
The storm cut power to some 80,000 households in the Kansas City metropolitan area and to more than 12,000 rural customers, officials said. About half the Kansas City customers had power restored by noon Tuesday, said a spokeswoman for Kansas City Power & Light.

Heavy wet snow weighed down power lines and tree branches, making them vulnerable to collapse, especially with winds of 10 to 20 mph, said Sharon Watson, spokesperson for emergency management in Kansas.
    
Watson said this week's storm has in ways had a greater impact than last week's.

"It has covered far less of an area but it has been more deadly and there is the big concern about power outages,'' Watson said.
    
Governors in Texas and Oklahoma had declared states of emergency in the areas struck by the snowstorm to speed assistance to those in need. Interstate and other highways were closed across the Texas and Oklahoma panhandles.

Areas around Amarillo and Lubbock received more than a foot (30 cm) of snow during the storm, which had cut visibility to near zero on some roads, Texas transportation officials said.
    
In addition to the winter storm, National Weather Service forecasters on Tuesday issued tornado watches across central Florida and up the eastern coast to South Carolina.

You May Like

Video British Fighters On Frontline of ISIS Information War

It’s estimated that several hundred British citizens are fighting for Islamic State alongside other foreign jihadists More

Multimedia Hit Song Delivers Ebola Message in Liberia

'Ebola in Town' has danceable beat, while also delivering serious message about avoiding infection More

Video New Technology Gives Surgeons Unprecedented Views of Patients’ Bodies

Technology offers real-time, interactive, medical visualization and is multi-dimensional More

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Native Bees May Help Save Cropsi
X
Deborah Block
August 22, 2014 12:23 AM
U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video Native Bees May Help Save Crops

U.S. President Barack Obama has called for a federal strategy to promote the health of bees that have been declining. The honeybee has been waning due to parasites, disease and pesticides. Wild bees may be used to take over their role as crop pollinators. Scientists first need to learn a lot more about wild bees, says biologist Sam Droege, who is pioneering the first national inventory on native bees. VOA’s Deborah Block went to his research laboratory in Beltsville, Maryland, to bring you more.
Video

Video US Defense Officials Plan for Long-Term Strategy to Contain Islamic State

U.S. defense officials say American air strikes in Iraq have helped deter Islamic State militants for the time being, but that a broad international effort is needed to defeat the extremists permanently. Defense Secretary Chuck Hagel warned Thursday that the group formerly known as the Islamic State in Iraq and the Levant, or ISIL, is better organized, and financially and militarily stronger than any other known terrorist group. Zlatica Hoke has more.
Video

Video Drug-Resistant Malaria Spreads in Southeast Asia

On Thailand’s border with Myanmar, also known as Burma, a malaria research and treatment clinic is stepping up efforts to eliminate a drug-resistant form of the parasite - before it spreads abroad. Steve Sandford reports from Mae Sot, Thailand.
Video

Video Gaza Conflict, Hamas Popularity Challenge Abbas

The Palestinian unity government of Mahmoud Abbas has failed to convince Hamas to agree to Egyptian-negotiated terms with Israel on a Gaza cease-fire. VOA State Department Correspondent Scott Stearns reports on what the Gaza conflict means for President Abbas, with whom U.S. officials have worked for years on a two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Video

Video Nigeria's 'Nollywood' Movie Industry Rolls in High Gear

Twenty years after its birth in a video shop in Lagos, Nigeria's "Nollywood" is one of the most prolific film industries on earth. Despite low budgets and whirlwind production schedules, Nigerian films are wildly popular in Africa and industry professionals say they hope, in the future, their films will be as great in quality as they are in quantity. Heather Murdock has more for VOA from Lagos.
Video

Video UN Launches 'Biggest Aid Operation in 30 Years' in Iraq

The United Nations has launched what it describes as one of the biggest aid operations in 30 years in northern Iraq, as hundreds of thousands of refugees flee the extremist Sunni militant group calling itself the Islamic State. As Kurdish and Iraqi forces battle the Sunni insurgents, the fighting has forced more people to flee their homes. Kurdish authorities say the international community must act now to avert a humanitarian catastrophe. Henry Ridgwell reports for VOA from London.
Video

Video Cambodian American Hip Hop Artist Sings of Personal Struggles

A growing underground movement of Cambodian American hip hop artists is rapping about the struggles of living in urban America. Most, if not all of them, are refugees or children of refugees who came to the United States from Cambodia to escape the Khmer Rouge genocide of the 1970s. Through their music, the artists hope to give voice to immigrants who have been struggling quietly for years. Elizabeth Lee reports from Long Beach, California.
Video

Video African Media Tries to Educate Public About Ebola

While the Ebola epidemic continues to claim lives in West Africa, information technology specialists, together with radio and TV reporters, are battling misinformation and prejudice about the disease - using social media to educate the public about the deadly virus. VOA’s George Putic has more.

AppleAndroid