Extreme Weather Puts America Under Siege

The United States of America is a pretty big country. A little over 3.8 million square miles, in fact. So, when 49 of our 50 states are under some type of weather alert – as they were earlier this week – you know there’s some nasty weather moving around.

A powerful storm brought snow, flooding, and other severe weather to our nation this week. The Great Lakes got heavy snow, which then moved to the Northeast. 

Down in the Southeast, severe storms including 14 tornadoes proved deadly. They caused massive amounts of power outages. Ironically, North Dakota was the only state that avoided weather watches, warnings, or alerts. That’s a state that normally has extreme winter weather. 

Altogether, more than 800,000 homes and businesses lost power in the eastern U.S. alone. Mainly in Pennsylvania, New York, New Jersey, Virginia, and North Carolina. 

Blizzards, Tornadoes, Heavy Rain Pound U.S. 

The snow that pounded the Great Lakes area on Tuesday, accompanied by strong winds, was the same storm that had deluged the Plains with blizzard conditions the previous couple of days. Nationally, more than 100 million people were under wind alerts. 

Also on Monday and Tuesday, radar-confirmed tornadoes struck Southeastern states. Thunderstorms were racing eastward at speeds of up to 70 miles per hour.

Tornado watches were spreading from Florida to North Carolina. Heavy rains resulted in considerable flooding. Several people had to be rescued in Florida’s panhandle.

Four deaths and critical injuries were reported in Alabama, Georgia, and North Carolina. One driver was killed in Georgia when a tree fell on the car he was driving on a highway. An elderly woman in Alabama died when her mobile home was flipped upside down.

The same system moved up to the Northeast on Tuesday and Wednesday. Rain, snow, and high winds caused plenty of damage and more power outages. 

More than 10,000 Flights Affected 

As always happens with severe winter weather, travel delays occurred. About 1,350 flights were canceled and more than 8,700 were delayed. 

Flight disruptions in some of the country’s busiest airports – such as Dallas Ft. Worth International and Hartsfield-Jackson Atlanta International – were caused by thunderstorms. 

States of emergency were declared in a variety of states. Including Florida where four tornadoes were confirmed. And in New Jersey prior to the storm arriving. 

Numerous Crashes; Other Drivers Stranded

Earlier I mentioned how the Plains states were affected by the storm that hit them on Monday. Heavy snow and high winds caused blizzards that forced road closures. Some drivers found themselves trapped on roads, with rescues nearly impossible. 

In Iowa, drivers were encouraged to stay off the roads. Whiteout conditions resulted in numerous crashes on Interstate 80. Especially east of Moline to the Illinois border and in the Cedar Rapids area.

At least 25 people were rescued in Kansas during blizzard conditions. They were moved to a local school for safety. 

Conditions were similar as far south as New Mexico. About 50 drivers were stranded on Highway 56 due to a blizzard. Some of their cars had to be dug out of snow. 

Downpours Cause Flooding 

With some areas getting much more rain than snow, flash flooding quickly became a major issue.

Especially on the East Coast. From the Carolinas up to New York and beyond. Heavy rains increased the rate of snowmelt, which added to the problem.

The Northeast was already vulnerable to flooding due to a recent nor’easter. Heavy rain and high winds increased that risk. 

Meanwhile, in the Northwest, blizzard conditions were still occurring on Wednesday. Snow totals were expected to reach several feet at higher elevations.    

How to Prepare for the Next One

The storms that swept the country this week may be over. But with more than two months of winter remaining, more are sure to come. 

We can’t control that, but we can do everything in our power to prepare for them. Make sure you have these items ready and waiting when you need them: 

  • Survival food. Without the vitamins, nutrients, and overall sustenance you can only get from eating enough food, every storm will be more challenging to deal with. 
  • Plenty of clean drinking water in secure containers. As well as ways to purify water you may have to gather from potentially contaminated sources.
  • Backup power in the form of a generator. Extra points if it’s solar powered.  
  • First-aid kit.
  • A reliable way to receive vital information. Such as an emergency weather radio. 
  • Portable power bank. Make sure your cell phone and other electronic devices stay charged.
  • Plenty of blankets and extra clothes to say warm, inside or out. 

The next storm is probably right around the corner. Get ready for it.


  • Dave Perkins - January 14, 2024

    I chose you initially for your power cells in preparation for our outages already and will be occurring in the future.

  • Dick Sargent - January 14, 2024

    I blieve 4Patriots and my 18kw Gereric Generator has me covered … Thank for heads up …

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