A winter storm system consisting of severe thunderstorms, heavy rain, thick snowfall, and strong winds struck the Gulf Coast and Southeast United States. The system also spawned a tornado outbreak in the regions, resulting in the deaths of at least four people, as powerful winds downed power lines and trees, according to local sources.
The deadly weather hazards reported in the southern and southeastern parts of the US are associated with the “monster storm system” amid the continuance of the North American winter season as of first ten days of January 2024. On Monday, January 8, the National Weather Service (NWS) issued a weather alert for the occurrence of major winter storms across the Lower 48 states this week.
Southeast Severe Weather
A large portion of the South and Eastern US will be subject to new rounds of disruptive, life-threatening severe storms, flooding rain, and strong winds into the weekend, according to AccuWeather meteorologists on Thursday, January 11. The Southeast severe weather is caused by an unrelenting weather pattern of storms from the West Coast to the East Coast.
The weekend weather hazards may continue to impact states such as Florida, Georgia, the Carolinas, and their surrounding areas across the region. Aside from property damage and dangerous weather conditions, power outages and the disruption of local travel are possible in the coming days.
AccuWeather’s forecast also indicates that the next round of storms will make areas from Louisiana to Georgia as a moderate risk zone. The threat area also includes New Orleans, Louisiana; Montgomery, Alabama; and Pensacola, Florida until the end of the week.
Also Read: US Weather Forecast: Major Winter Storms To Hit Lower 48 States This Week [NWS]
Deadly Tornado Outbreak
The recent deadly tornado outbreak saw the deaths of four people as storms and potential tornadoes left a trail of destruction through the Southeast US. Dubbed as the “East Coast winter storms,” the weather system led to the cancellation of hundreds of flights and power outage of more than 500,000 homes.
Succeeding reports indicate that five people died instead of three or four storm-related fatalities. Aside from the tornado outbreak, the risk from the severe storms includes riverine flooding due to swollen rivers. This was the case when the powerful winter storm barreled through the Eastern US.
Major Winter Storms
In the NWS’ US weather forecast mentioned earlier, the agency’s Weather Prediction Center (WPC) highlighted the likely occurrence of strong to damaging winds, severe storms, and heavy rain from the South to the Northeast US. In previous years, similar severe weather conditions have occurred in different parts of the country.
In particular, the NWS forecast of the major winter storms this week include two weather systems; with the first impacting most parts of the US and the second to be more focused on the Pacific Northwest. Elsewhere, weather hazards associated with the current winter season involved blizzards that dumped several inches of snow across the Midwest region.
Related Article: Severe Storm System Ravaged Mid-Atlantic to Northeast, Leaving 3 Dead and Thousands Without Power
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