Travel Alert January 2019: Winter Weather to Impact Eastern United States and Southeastern Canada

If the eastern half of the United States or southeastern Canada are in your travel plans over the next week or so, you may want to consider delaying your travel — or, at least, keep yourself updated as to the latest information pertaining to the weather — due to a major winter storm which is already disrupting travel at a minimum of 90 airports in as many as 16 states and five provinces…

Travel Alert January 2019: Winter Weather to Impact Eastern United States and Southeastern Canada

…and those numbers are expected to increase.

Until Monday, January 28, 2019, up to one foot of snow is expected to accumulate in such cities as Minneapolis, Burlington, Chicago, Brainerd, Madison, Bangor, Green Bay, Fargo, Milwaukee, Québec and Saint Paul; while up to six inches of snow could occur in cities such as Detroit, Albany, Concord, Bismarck, Allentown, Bristol, Worcester, Montréal and Portland.

Cities such as Cleveland, Philadelphia, Buffalo, Sioux Falls, Roanoke, Toronto, Pittsburgh, Boston, Cincinnati, Hartford and the District of Columbia are forecast to receive as must as three inches of snow.

After the snow ends, a brutal blast of Arctic air caused by a polar vortex will plunge temperatures from Alberta to central Florida to Maine on Tuesday, January 29, 2019 with the most frigid air in years in many locations. As one example, the low temperature in Fargo — which was experiencing blizzard conditions at the time this article was written — is forecast to be -33 degrees Fahrenheit; and the air will feel as cold as -44 degrees Fahrenheit when the factoring in the wind. Some local areas in the northern plains states and southern plains provinces could experience ambient temperatures as low as -50 degrees Fahrenheit, which could shatter weather records.

Risks of a prolonged spell of such frigid air include frostbite and hypothermia — as well as dead car batteries and the potential for water pipes to freeze and burst.

Meanwhile, snow is forecast to fall as far south as central Louisiana on Tuesday, January 29, 2019 as the result of temperatures which are expected to be colder than normal. The northern half of the state of Florida could see temperatures plummet to as much as 20 degrees below normal. Atlanta, Birmingham, Little Rock, Nashville, Jackson, Chattanooga and Montgomery are some of the cities which could see frozen precipitation, as the air will certainly be more than cold enough; and some areas could experience several inches of snow. A few flakes of snow may fall as far south as the central Gulf Coast region. The phenomenon known as black ice — which is ice that cannot easily be seen by the human eye and is especially dangerous to motorists — could occur in some areas of the southeastern United States.

Flight Waivers, Delays and Cancellations

If the eastern half of the United States or southeastern Canada are in your travel plans over the next week or so, expect delays and cancellations of flights. Keep up to date on the latest information pertaining to this winter weather system which may affect your travel plans. Better yet, postponing or canceling your trip might be a better option — no matter which mode of travel you plan on taking.

If you have a flight scheduled, your flight may be delayed or canceled — and you may be eligible for a waiver of a fee to change your itinerary. If you are driving in any of the affected areas, watch out for deteriorating weather conditions and traffic problems.

Here are eleven airlines which have issued travel alerts as a result of this weather system:

Summary

I just received an alert for a Winter Storm Watch for Tuesday, January 29, 2019 for the greater Atlanta metropolitan area. No travel waivers have been issued for the southeastern United States — yet, anyway — so expect additional airlines to issue more travel waivers as a result of this winter weather system as it continues to travel eastward.

Be sure to contact your airline or transportation provider for the latest information pertaining to your travels — if they are adversely affected — and please: travel safely.

Photograph ©2017 by Brian Cohen.

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