East coast hit with 'bomb cyclone' snowstorm

Don't fear the bomb cyclone. But beware the polar vortex.   REUTERS  Aaron Lynett

Don't fear the bomb cyclone. But beware the polar vortex. REUTERS Aaron Lynett

The standard surface pressure on Earth is 1013.2 millibars, and the lower the pressure drops within a cyclone, the more intense a storm it creates.

Deadly conditions: At least 19 people have died this week because of severe weather, officials said.

The severe weather has led the Foreign Office to update its advice to United Kingdom travellers in, or heading to, the region.

A winter storm dubbed Grayson has been described as a "bombogenesis", "bomb cyclone" and "winter hurricane". By Thursday, it was wreaking havoc as blizzard warnings and states of emergency went into effect along the Eastern Seaboard. A brutal winter storm dumped snow in Tallahassee, Fla., on Wednesday for the first time in almost three decades before slogging up the Atlantic coast and smacking Southern cities such as Savannah and Charleston, South Carolina, with a rare blast of snow and ice. The storm is likely to bring winds between 65 km per hour and 95 km per hour, and around 12 inches of snow, CNN reported.

"We are expecting some really cold temperatures and wind chills", Andrew Hagen, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Miami said Wednesday night. The Atlanta-based carrier has placed embargoes of varying lengths on a number of East Coast airports, including BOS, LGA, Charleston (CHS), Savannah (SAV), Providenc (PVD), Hartford (BDL), Norfolk (ORF), New York-JFK, and Newark (EWR).

"A powerful low pressure system will continue to bring heavy snow, strong winds, high surf, and unsafe travel conditions to much of northern New England into Friday".

This new wave of cold weather this weekend will be close to the level of cold experienced at the end of 2017 and start of 2018 in the Midwest, central Appalachians and interior South, according to forecasters.

Polar Vortex

More than 4,300 U.S. flights were canceled for Thursday, according to FlightAware.com. In addition, the vast majority of other eastern states are in the midst of bone chilling cold, with some temperatures at below -10F. The storm becoming powerful in a short amount of time. Heavy wind gusts also means the potential for widespread power outages.

Schools have been closed in response, with weather warnings in place across the east of the country.

The so-called "bomb cyclone" storm took the East Coast by storm - for lack of better words - with many turning to social media to document the extreme weather conditions.

They include the Delmarva Peninsula, which includes parts of Delaware, Virginia and Maryland; coastal New Jersey; eastern Long Island, New York; and coastal eastern New England.

As for the D.C. metro region, this storm system may be too far out at sea in the Atlantic to bring any significant snow.

States of emergency have been declared by the governors of Florida, Georgia, North Carolina and Virginia.

The storm has resulted in thousands of cancelled flights at major airports such as Boston's Logan International Airport and New York's LaGuardia Airport and disrupted the schedules at regional airports.

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