Home New mexico united Dust Bowl winds hit the western United States devastated by a tornado

Dust Bowl winds hit the western United States devastated by a tornado

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December 15 (Reuters) – Less than a week after a swarm of powerful tornadoes devastated Kentucky and four other states, an abnormal windstorm produced “dust bowl” conditions and gusts of over 100 mph (161 km / h) in parts of the Great Plains and the Upper Midwest, meteorologists said Wednesday.

The low-pressure wind system, driven by unusually high temperatures for the season in Nebraska, Iowa and Minnesota, triggered power outages in four US states, including more than 100,000 homes and businesses in Colorado on Wednesday evening.

The storm system could also hit the area with thunderstorms and snow, the National Weather Service said in an advisory.

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“There have been historic ‘Dust Bowl’ conditions without visibility in parts of New Mexico and Colorado,” said Marc Chenard, forecaster for the National Weather Service’s Weather Forecast Center in College Park, Maryland.

“It’s very unusual,” Chenard said. “It’s moving east and is unusual for such a large area, it will pass through the Great Lakes region, Michigan and Canada by Thursday morning,” he said.

A rainbow and a cloud of dust are seen in Boulder, Colorado, the United States on December 15, 2021 in this screenshot obtained from a video on social media. Matt Benjamin / via REUTERS

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The Dust Bowl refers to a time in the 1930s when severe drought and destructive farming practices disrupted the ecology of parts of the American and Canadian prairies. Meanwhile, huge clouds of loosened topsoil regularly blanketed the area, causing an economic crisis for farmers and a massive migration to California.

The windstorm follows one of the deadliest tornado outbreaks in U.S. history. At least 74 people were killed in Kentucky and 14 died in other states as this storm system swept through the Great Plains and parts of the South last Friday evening and early Saturday morning. Read more

President Joe Biden visited some of the devastated communities on Wednesday.

The National Weather Service said in its forecast that the strong winds in the current system would pick up overnight Wednesday and cross the Upper Midwest into Canada by Thursday.

“As a result, blower dust and power outages will likely be found across the region,” the weather service said. “An extremely critical fire weather also exists tonight, from northern Texas Panhandle to north-central Kansas.”

The NWS Storm Prediction Center issued a “moderate risk” warning to the area and said blowing snow could create driving hazards in Minnesota and the Dakotas.

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Reporting by Rich McKay in Atlanta and Dan Whitcomb in Los Angeles; Editing by Stephen Coates and Christian Schmollinger

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