Yahoo News is publishing first-person accounts from readers who are surviving the cold snap that's affecting large portions of the west, Midwest and southern plains this week.
FIRST PERSON | ST. LOUIS -- Thursday dawned bright and clear, but there was an undertone of a winter storm brewing in the air here in the St. Louis metro area. The day was unseasonably warm - we saw highs of around 70 degrees. Normal temps are in the upper 30s for this area. I actually spent the day outside with my dogs and washed my car in shorts and a T-shirt, thanks to the warm temperatures. I was supposed to drive to Indianapolis on Thursday evening, but moved my trip up a day because of the dire predictions from the weather gurus. We actually started receiving text alerts of the impending storm as early as Tuesday morning.
I got to Indianapolis late on Wednesday night. It was still warm outside, so I ensured that my car's gas tank was filled and ready to go, and got a few food items to keep in my hotel room. When I went to bed at midnight, it was still around 61 degrees outside. When I left for work this morning at 6, the temperature had already dropped to 39, and it was 29 at lunch time and still dropping. The wind has been blowing constantly since yesterday as the cold front was coming in; right now the winds are blisteringly cold and blowing heavily.
So far, we've seen a lot of precipitation, but nothing too dangerous. We had light rain this morning that turned to sleet around lunchtime, and continues to come down. The real precipitation is supposed to hit us later tonight; officials are expecting up to seven inches of snow in my area. Earlier predictions had the rain arriving at 3 p.m., turning to snow by 6 p.m. The estimates were a little off, as everything is moving much faster than predicted. Already the roads are slick, the parking lots are becoming slick and difficult to walk across, and power lines are freezing.
Schools where I live, on the Illinois side of St. Louis, sent students home this morning and have cancelled all afternoon and evening activities. I went with a coworker at lunch and got sand bags for his truck. We were hoping this system would all go south of us, but it looks like we are going to get the brunt of the storm. The majority of us working this weekend are from out of town, so we are making preparations for the bad weather and hoping everyone stays safe.
- Natural Phenomena
- Nature & Environment