Tuesday, January 21, 2020
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Weather alerts and school cancellations in US, Europe

Cold weather and heavy winter storms across the southern US and across Europe have caused a few problems with traffic, schools, and just getting around.

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In Atlanta, for instance, several schools announced they would open late or simply close their doors on Wednesday, even ahead of the arrival of any wintry weather. The Associated Press reported a steady snowfall Tuesday night on the Interstate 75 corridor leading from Atlanta through its northwest suburbs. Scattered reports of fender benders were coming in.

The Houston Independent School District, the biggest one in Texas, also canceled classes for Wednesday. The reason there: bitter cold temperatures promised to keep roads icy.

“HISD officials have been monitoring the weather forecast and have determined that continuing icy road conditions across the Houston area may make for dangerous driving on Wednesday morning,” the district said in a statement. “As a result, all HISD schools and district administrative offices will be closed Wednesday as a precautionary measure.”

The larger school districts in Maryland, after re-evaluating the weather conditions following an announcement of a simple delay, decided to close Wednesday as well. Districts included, at least, Anne Arundel, Baltimore, Harford, Howard, Montgomery, and Prince George’s counties.

In Georgia, a growing list of schools and local governments announced closings for Wednesday, and the governor declared a state of emergency for 83 counties, the Atlanta Journal-Constitution reported. “Arctic temperatures and harsh winter conditions” were prevailing across the northern part of the state.

Finally, in Yakutia, which is about 3,300 miles east of Moscow, in Russia, students often go to school in temperatures as cold as –40°F. But even there, officials cancelled school amid temperatures as low as –88°F. The AP reported that local police also ordered parents to keep their children at home, where every house has backup generators to keep the heat on as a matter of routine life in the tundra.

Paul Katula is the executive editor of the Voxitatis Research Foundation, which publishes this blog. For more information, see the About page.

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