Previously published in Examiner on Mar 25, 2013
Spring is in the air but not for some people in the Midwest. The Chicago tribune published today that, “An early spring snowstorm forced the cancellation of more than 100 flights at Denver International Airport and closed several roads Saturday as it moved eastward, dumping more than a foot of snow in some places.”
Snowstorms are common in Montreal where I live. Canada generally has a harsher winter than the USA.
The storm dumped heavy snow across the region and is expected to bring more. This storm is the same system which crossed Colorado and Kansas bringing with it 19 inches of snow. Ariel Cohen, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service said, “The storm was moving across the mid-Mississippi Valley region on Sunday and had already left more than 6 inches of snow by mid-afternoon in parts of east-central Missouri, including the St. Louis area. Indianapolis, Columbus, Ohio, and Pittsburg were also expected to be hit with heavy snowfall as the storm tracked east, possibly affecting coastal New Jersey and New England by late Monday and early Tuesday.” Interstate 70 from the east Denver to the Kansas State line is closed because of gusty winds and blowing snow.
Many of these places are not prepared for this type of weather. Even here in Montreal there are delays which constantly prevent the snow from being removed each winter.
Although there are differences between a blizzard and severe snowstorms, namely the force of the wind and not the amount of snow, both conditions make visibility difficult which in turn can cause road accidents.
I have walked in storm storms many times during my life. The snow was blowing so hard in my face that I could not see a thing. Sometimes my city comes to a standstill; even cars cannot operate. Many cars are stalled all over the place making it a hindrance for the snow plough crew to clear the roads.
Furthermore, snow blindness is a condition caused by corneal burns caused by excessive exposure to ultraviolet B (UVB) rays. Symptoms of snow blindness usually include intense eye pain, severe headaches, a feeling of “grit” in the eyes, swollen and red eyelids, visions of halos around light, blurry and temporary loss of vision; these symptoms usually first show themselves around six to 12 hours after initial exposure to UV rays.”
My son just came home yesterday saying he was blinded by the snow. He was looking down on the ground and the brightness temporarily blinded him.