Thousands without power as new storm pummels West Coast while National Guard deploys to Buffalo

[ad_1]

A storm pummeling the West Coast has made an already disastrous weather week in America even worse, as much of Western New York remains buried under the ‘bomb cyclone’ that killed 34 people and thousands remain stranded due to Southwest Airlines canceling flights.

The new storm hit the West Coast with such force that trees were ripped out from their roots, drivers were stranded and wet on flooded roads, all while winds reached up to over 100mph. 

Meanwhile, the National Guard is set to go door-to-door for wellness checks in the city of Buffalo over the next 48 hours, as they brace for more than the 34 already pronounced dead throughout western New York.

All across America, the Department of Transportation has been called into question regarding the air travel disaster causing mass disruption this holiday season as Southwest Airlines canceled another 2,507 flights Wednesday morning. 

Thousands without power as new storm pummels West Coast while National Guard deploys to Buffalo

A storm pummeling the West Coast has made an already disastrous weather week in America even worse, as much of Western New York remains buried under the ‘bomb cyclone’ that killed 34 people and thousands remain stranded due to Southwest Airlines canceling flights 

Troops from the National Guard are set to go door-to-door for wellness checks in the city of Buffalo over the next 48 hours, as they brace for more than the 34 already pronounced dead in the western New York region

Troops from the National Guard are set to go door-to-door for wellness checks in the city of Buffalo over the next 48 hours, as they brace for more than the 34 already pronounced dead in the western New York region

On Tuesday evening, hundreds of thousands of people were without power throughout the Pacific Northwest. 

That number has since dwindled to 52,521 in Oregon and 17,453 in Washington as of Wednesday afternoon. Some areas of Washington state are expected to get their power back between 4pm and 10pm local time.  

Perhaps most concerning was a new high tide record set after it hit 18.4 feet on Tuesday morning, beating the 17.99 feet record set in 1987. 

The rising waters left massive flooding in many areas until about 10am when the tide lowered, leaving residents driving through mid-tire high water and restaurants having to close for breakfast. 

Coastal flooding and high wind advisories are still in place for Western Washington and a flash flood warning was issued for parts of Northeast California, Lake Tahoe, and Sierra Nevada for Friday and Saturday. 

See also  How a last minute phone call from Prince Charles led to the Queen's appearance at the Jubilee finale

Heavy gusts of wind were also reported by the National Weather Service in Reno, which said Heavenly Summit, Mt. Rose Ski, and Mammoth Mountain all had wind gusts between 108 and 111mph. 

Elsewhere in Nevada, Carson City, South Lake Tahoe, and Northwest Reno saw gusts between 51 and 56mph. 

Most frightening, a new high tide record was set after it hit 18.4 feet on Tuesday morning, beating the 17.99 feet record set in 1987. Other parts of the area, including Seattle (pictured) also experienced flooding

Most frightening, a new high tide record was set after it hit 18.4 feet on Tuesday morning, beating the 17.99 feet record set in 1987. Other parts of the area, including Seattle (pictured) also experienced flooding 

The storm hit the West Coast with such force that trees were ripped from their roots (pictured), drivers were stranded on flooded roads, and winds up to over 100mph

The storm hit the West Coast with such force that trees were ripped from their roots (pictured), drivers were stranded on flooded roads, and winds up to over 100mph

Some areas got up to 111mph wind gusts as the storm rocketed through and another is on its way, set to hit Thursday. The second storm is set to bring more heavy rainfall and potentially snow

Some areas got up to 111mph wind gusts as the storm rocketed through and another is on its way, set to hit Thursday. The second storm is set to bring more heavy rainfall and potentially snow

A woman in Olympia, Washington, saved a jellyfish (pictured) that was washed up

A woman in Olympia, Washington, saved a jellyfish (pictured) that was washed up 

In the Portland area, several highways were shut down on Tuesday due to flooding, according to KOIN

Further south in California, many residents saw a similar view, with 60 collisions on freeways during rush hour traffic. 

In Mount Tamalpais State Park – near the San Francisco Bay Area – saw 4.1 inches of rain by 6am, according to CBS

All the trouble is being compounded by the threat of another storm heading toward the West Coast and expected to hit the Pacific Northwest on Thursday, bringing another round of heavy rain. 

That second storm could cause everything from mudslides and landslides and potentially feet of snow in some areas.   

A man pours water out of his home in Seattle that he barricaded with sandbags

A man pours water out of his home in Seattle that he barricaded with sandbags 

One man in Seattle kayaked through the streets after the storm

One man in Seattle kayaked through the streets after the storm 

On the opposite side of the country, Buffalo continues to deal with the ‘blizzard of the century’ as troops come in to help local authorities.  

Mark C. Poloncarz, the executive of Erie County, made the announcement that the Guard will join other local authorities to visit neighborhoods that lost power. 

See also  House of the Dragon: Rhaenyra and Daemon return to King's Landing after another huge time jump

Less than 1,000 homes are still without power in the county. Those who had no power going past 72 hours have been asked to file utility reimbursement claims.  

Poloncarz also said that three of the 34 dead have still not been identified and pleaded for families to contact local police. 

Many remain buried in New York’s second largest city, with a let-up in temperature expected toward the end of the week, but the National Weather Service has warned of flooding. 

The ‘bomb cyclone’ has killed at least 68 people across America and struggling emergency crews are expecting the death toll to rise further. 

A shocking 92 inches of snow blanketed the city from Friday to Sunday, which is about the same amount the city generally sees in a year.

New York Governor Kathy Hochul – a Buffalo native – said the aftermath resembled ‘a war zone’, while Poloncarz called it ‘the worst storm probably in our lifetime’. 

‘Certainly it is the blizzard of the century,’ Hochul told reporters.

As temperatures went down, commuters and some residents were fleeing their freezing homes became trapped on highways, unable to be rescued.

A loader makes its way along South Park Avenue to assist with the mammoth clean up

A loader makes its way along South Park Avenue to assist with the mammoth clean up

In a city well accustomed to snowstorms, some residents were blaming a travel ban they said was enacted too late on Friday morning as contributing to the mayhem

In a city well accustomed to snowstorms, some residents were blaming a travel ban they said was enacted too late on Friday morning as contributing to the mayhem

The problem was made even worse when some areas were inaccessible to ambulances for dozens of hours and snowplows were unable to perform their job due to the ferocity of the storm.

Many Buffalo residents were blaming a travel ban they said was enacted too late on Friday morning as contributing to the mayhem. 

The warning for that travel ban came just 41 minutes before it was put into effect, at 8.49am on Friday. By that time, many people were already out on the road.

Nationwide, people are reeling from the meltdown occurring with Southwest Airlines. 

Southwest has already canceled another 2,507 flights on Wednesday morning after they canceled 2,348 on Tuesday – bringing the two-day cancellation total to nearly 5,000.

See also  Lockdowns saved just 10k lives in Europe and US combined: Study finds they had 'little to no effect'

According to FlightAware, other U.S. airline companies have already returned to normal from the major winter storm. Spirit Airlines canceled just 32 flights and JetBlue canceled 24 as of Wednesday morning.

Sam Graves, Ranking Member of the Transportation and Infrastructure Committee, told DailyMail.com in a statement that he is in contact with Southwest Airlines and ‘monitoring their efforts to get passengers moving again.’

‘Severe weather is beyond anyone’s control, but it’s clear that the widespread disruptions we have seen go beyond normal delays,’ Graves said. ‘The right thing to do is to ensure that customers have full access to refunds and reimbursements for hotels, food, and alternative travel costs – and that appears to be Southwest’s intent.’

Travelers are stuck waiting at airports and desperately trying to get a hold of their luggage after Southwest canceled another 2,507 flights as of Wednesday morning

Travelers are stuck waiting at airports and desperately trying to get a hold of their luggage after Southwest canceled another 2,507 flights as of Wednesday morning

‘There’s nothing more frustrating than being stranded and delayed in reaching your final destination, whether that’s to see family for the holidays or return home safely,’ he added.

Graves adds that he ‘expects [Southwest] to do everything possible to make their loyal customers whole.’

In addition to the delays and cancellations, passengers are also frustrated with baggage hold ups. Some are seeing their luggage stranded at other airports, while others have to wait in massive lines to obtain their suitcases that were checked.

As Southwest’s flight cancellation continues into Wednesday, crew members are also being stranded in airports alongside passengers, according to Secretary of Transportation Pete Buttigieg.

The DOT head met on Tuesday with unions representing Southwest pilots and flight attendants, and said they told him crew members were in just as ‘terrible a situation’ as passengers.

‘They’re frustrated and often stranded, and they themselves are often sleeping in airports so you have a company that’s got a lot of cleaning up to do,’ Buttigieg told CNN. 

Members of the Senate Commerce Committee are promising to investigate Southwest Airlines as flight cancellations top 10,000 over the holiday week. 

[ad_2]

Source link