SHAWNEE, Okla. – Parts of Texas, Oklahoma and Kansas were ravaged by wild storms and tornadoes while heavy rain and snow blanketed much of California and parts of the West on Monday as the warlike weather marched menacingly across the country.
A winter storm watch was in effect across much of the northeast. And in Michigan, more than 157,000 homes and businesses were left in the dark Monday night after five days of high winds, snow and ice that wreaked havoc on power lines.
Elsewhere in the Midwest, a tornado watch was in effect Monday afternoon across much of Ohio as storms swept through the state. Parts of the Columbus metro area were under a tornado warning late Monday afternoon. There was a report of an unconfirmed tornado touchdown earlier Monday afternoon in Germantown, Ohio, about 15 miles southwest of Dayton, according to the National Weather Service.
Nine confirmed or suspected tornadoes swept through Kansas and Oklahoma late Sunday and early Monday, the National Weather Service reported. Texas was also ravaged by storms that brought high winds and hail to some areas – a 114 mph gust of wind was reported in Memphis, Texas, 130 miles northeast of Lubbock. More than a dozen injuries were reported in the area.
“A lot of us couldn’t get into (the shelters) it was that fast,” Dia Ingersoll, 42, said hours after an apparent tornado ripped through Shawnee, 40 miles east. east of Oklahoma City.
New York braces for winter’s heaviest snowfall
While the heaviest snowfall is expected in parts of upstate New York and New England, New York City is expected to experience its heaviest snowfall so far this winter.
New York City has yet to see any measurable snowfall this winter, but AccuWeather forecasters said precipitation was expected for the city Monday night.
As temperatures approach freezing, precipitation will likely be a mix of snow, sleet and rain that will continue overnight into Tuesday morning, AccuWeather said. While the amount of snowfall varies across the region, AccuWeather said about one to three inches of snow is expected in Manhattan and Central Park.
“While this is historically not a lot of snow for New York City, it will be noticeable, especially given the lack of snow for the city so far this season,” said AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dave Dombek. .
Ingersoll, who has lived in her home for 17 years, said her roof had a hole where her chimney was torn out by the storm. She lost shingles and a fence and outdoor furniture was damaged, she said. Next-door neighbors suffered significant damage; much of their roof has disappeared. Ingersoll said the house began to leak, which led to emergency vehicles shutting off gas and power to the neighborhood.
Ingersoll has a storm cellar in the garden, but she, her fiancé and her mother were still in their living room when the tornado hit. The family was watching news reports that a tornado had hit the nearby Shawnee Mall when “not but two minutes later it hit us”.
“When the electricity went out, my mum was stuck in her recliner,” she said. “My fiancé must have jumped on it because right next to it is a sliding glass door.”
In northern Nevada, many government offices have been closed except for essential staff. The winter storm was expected to hit the Reno area around 1 p.m. local time and drop a foot of snow atop the 6 inches that fell Sunday. The mountain areas expected much more.
Bethany Drysdale, who lives in Carson City, said she was driving to work in Reno on Monday morning, but eventually turned around and decided to work from home because authorities were enforcing screening laws traction on Interstate 580. The area averages about 300 sunny days a year, Washoe County spokesman Drysdale said.
“We don’t usually get that amount of snow this late. Schools are closed, roads are covered in snow and ice, and it’s windy, which makes it worse,” she said. “It’s strange to have two months of snow on the ground in Carson City.”
Mammoth Mountain ski area in California was under a blizzard warning on Monday, and officials warned of “intense” snowfall and high winds. The ski area sits 11,000 feet above sea level in the Sierra Nevada mountain range and is quickly approaching 500 inches of snow for the season. The resort received about 5 feet of snow last week and another 19 inches Sunday night, with another 5 feet expected Wednesday morning. Even before the end of winter – March is usually a snowy month – this season was among the snowiest on record for the resort.
“What a season,” Mammoth spokeswoman Lauren Burke told USA TODAY. “The skiing and riding was amazing over the weekend, and although we expect some limited lift operations over the next few days, we are looking forward to more amazing powder days later this week. once this huge storm system is gone.”
Severe damage was reported in Norman, home to the University of Oklahoma, as winds and tornadoes swept through the area Sunday evening.
“Tornado WARNING in effect for OU-NORMAN campus,” the school tweeted Sunday evening. “Seek shelter NOW inside the building you are in. Go to the lowest floor/inner room.” Other tweets warned the school’s more than 20,000 students to stay indoors and away from windows.
Gas leaks, downed power lines and uprooted trees have been reported in Norman, Mayor Larry Heikkila said. AccuWeather.
Sylvie Mawoh read her two children a bedtime story in their house in eastern Normandy when it came time to take shelter. They hid in a closet in the master bedroom as the tornado passed overhead, causing havoc throughout their neighborhood.
“It was scary. I felt like the whole house was going to fly away,” Mawoh said.
Statewide, Oklahoma officials received reports of 55 people with severe weather injuries at area hospitals.
In western Oklahoma, near the town of Cheyenne, at least one person was killed and three others injured after a tornado touched down on Sunday night, county emergency manager Levi Blackketter reported. Roger Mills.
Normandy officials confirmed 12 weather-related injuries and classes were canceled Monday at two damaged elementary schools, Normandy Police Chief Kevin Foster said.
California sees more snow, rain; travel ‘almost impossible’ in Sierra
Most of California was experiencing rain or snow Monday morning. Southern California and other parts of the state were relieved on Sunday by blistering snow, record rains and flooding that hit the weekend. But another storm is expected to last through mid-week.
“A continuation of cold and unstable conditions is expected along the West Coast through midweek this week as waves of energy and moisture plunge from the Pacific,” AccuWeather meteorologist Brandon Buckingham said.
Here are some of the latest developments:
- A blizzard warning was in effect for the Sierra Nevada. The area could see 2 to 6 foot snow accumulations with wind gusts up to 75 mph. The National Weather Service says travel will be “almost impossible”.
- Los Angeles County will have “cold and choppy” weather midweek, with the region receiving up to an inch of rain. The San Fernando Valley received over 10 inches of rain over the weekend and downtown Los Angeles received over 4 inches.
- Snow levels could drop as low as 1,000 feet above sea level, according to AccuWeather.
- State officials were working on several freeway closures in the Los Angeles area; snow could cause more closures.
AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Adam Douty said this week’s new storm “won’t contain as much moisture” as the previous storm.
A BLIZZARD IN SOUTHERN CALIFORNIA: What you need to know about weird weather.
Freezing rain and snow were expected in parts of Minnesota, Wisconsin and Michigan.
“Bad: Freezing rain and additional ice accumulation expected Monday,” the weather service tweeted. “Good: accumulations should be less and stay north of areas affected by the ice storm.”
In Michigan, more than 157,000 homes and businesses were left without power across the state on Monday, according to PowerOutage.US.
A winter storm watch went into effect Monday across the northeast, and snow likely came from northeast Pennsylvania across the rest of the region.
Heavy snow – several inches to a foot – was possible in the following areas:
- Vermont high ground
- New Hampshire high ground
- Parts of Maine
- new York
According to AccuWeather, there is a high risk of significant travel disruptions in upstate New York and much of the New England region.
Temperatures throughout the northeast will be below zero; the highs will be in the low 30s.
Winter storm tracking
National Weather Radar
Contributor: Jessie Christopher Smith, The Oklahoman; The Despatch of Columbus; The Associated Press. Follow Jordan Mendoza on Twitter: @jordan_mendoza5.