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Winter storms of 2009–2010

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Winter storms of 2009–2010

Winter storms of 2009–2010
satellite photo showing most of the UK. It shows the extent of snow cover across the entire island. From Plymouth in the south to Aberdeen in the north, the UK was hit with the heaviest snowfall in 32 years.
Formed 21 August 2009
Dissipated 3 March 2010
Lowest pressure 968 millibars (968 hPa) in North America.
Lowest temperature −45.6 °C (−50.1 °F) (Folldal, Norway)
Maximum snowfall or ice accretion 53.0 in (135 cm) (The town of Potter Hollow, New York)
Damage £- N/A?
Fatalities More than 400, mostly in the Peoples' Republic of China, Afghanistan, India, Poland and Mongolia (and many more indirectly).
Areas affected Northern Hemisphere

The global storm activity of early 2010 includes major meteorological events in the Earth's atmosphere from January 1 through to the last day of April, including winter storms (blizzards, ice storms, European windstorms), hailstorms, out of season monsoon rain storms, extratropical cyclones, gales, microbursts, flooding, rainstorms and other severe weather.

The thunderstorm season for the Northern Hemisphere began this time of year, beginning on March 1, and ending on August 31.

January

January 1–3

Fresh overnight snowfall on New Year's Eve and New Year's Day caused disruption in north east England, with roads across Northumberland, Tyne and Wear, County Durham and Teesside affected. Snow also fell in parts of East Cumbria. In places it was as deep as 10 centimetres (3.9 in) and motorists were warned not to travel unless their journey was absolutely necessary.[1]

A major snow-related weather warning was put out in Alaska on 30 December.[2] The expected snowstorm was probably part of the same weather system that hit the Russian Far East from December 30 to January 5.

Between January 1 and 2, 2010, 50- and 70-year record low temperatures and snowfall hit northern China and Korea starting 1 January.[3] Blizzards also hit Mongolia's Dundgobi province.

A heavy storm surge hit northeastern New Brunswick on January 2, leading to over $750,000 in damage in the community of Port Elgin.[4][5]

Heavy record-breaking snow also fell in Moscow in early January 2010.[6][7] and light snow briefly fell in Greece and Turkey.

On January 2, a weather front with a northerly wind brought heavy snow to the northwest of England. Wythenshawe near Manchester Airport had 5 inches (130 mm) of snow. This affected road transport on 2 January, particularly in the Greater Manchester area[8] with conditions on the M60, M602 and M66 reported to be poor, while Snake Pass, which links Manchester with Sheffield was closed.[8]

As a snowstorm entered Scotland, a number of roads across the country were closed including three junctions of the M9[9] while the motorway was shut in both directions at the Newbridge Roundabout in Edinburgh during the evening because of heavy snow, and did not open again until the following day. Problems were also reported on the A96 and the A939.[9] Rail services between Inverness and Central Scotland were also affected by poor weather.[9]

Possibly more than 200 people died in northern India, mostly in Uttar Pradesh after a cold snap and accidents in heavy fog around 2 and 3 January.[10]

Heavy rain fell in parts of southwestern Brazil. The worst affected municipality has been Angra dos Reis, about 150 kilometres (93 mi) southwest of the city of Rio de Janeiro. At least 35 people were killed at a resort on Ilha Grande:[11] about 40 people were staying in the hotel which was buried under a mudslide, and the death toll is expected to rise further.[12] In Rio Grande do Sul, at least seven people are dead and 20 missing after a bridge collapsed due to heavy rains.[13] It is reported to be one of the worst mudslides in Reo De Janero's history.

January 4–5

Heavy rain fell in Brazil[6] on the 4th.

Heavy snow fell in northern China and grounded hundreds of flights on the 4th. It and forced Hong Kong's Financial Secretary John Tsang and Monetary Authority Chief Executive Officer Norman Chan to cancel a trip to Beijing.[14] Beijing was hit by a blizzard starting the evening of the 2nd, with 70–80% of flights cancelled out of Beijing Capital International Airport on January 4.[3] Close to 20 cm of snow fell in the north of the city, and close to 25 cm in Seoul.[15][16] Schools across the area were closed, and Premier Wen asked local governments to ensure safe transportation, continued food supplies, and continued agricultural production.[3] Continued snowstorms were forecast for the city of Beijing and the province of Inner Mongolia. It was also predicted on January 7 for snow to reach the provinces of Jiangsu, Anhui, Henan and Hubei on January 9 according to China National Radio.[17] One person was killed in Xinjiang Autonomous Region as a result of the storm.[18] Emergency services handed out extra cattle fodder in Tibet.

Japan's Hokkaido island was hit by heavier snowfall, causing heavy travel disruption and some airport closures.

By January 4 about 30 people, including 28 children and an elderly man, died from cold-related causes in the last 11 days across Bangladesh as snow and a cold wave swept over the north and centre of the nation. Freezing fog also occurred on the 4th in Punjab, India.[19] Some parts of Bangladesh were the hardest hit with temperatures plummeting as low as 6 °C according to meteorologist Sanaul Haque, who predicted the cold wave may continue for another day.[6][20]

The New Brunswick villages of Upper Cape and Port Elgin were devastated[4] as a massive hurricane-strength blizzard hit Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Prince Edward Island on January 4, causing massive blackouts in its wake.[4]

Light snow briefly fell in Lebanon, Jordan, Israel and Palestine and further snow was reported in Niigata, Japan.

By January 4 about 30 people, including 28 children and an elderly man, died from cold-related causes in the last 11 days across Bangladesh as snow and a cold wave swept over the north and centre of the nation. Freezing fog also occurred on the 4th in Punjab, India.[21] Some parts of Bangladesh were the hardest hit with temperatures plummeting as low as 6 °C according to meteorologist Sanaul Haque, who predicted the cold wave may continue for another day.[20][22]

Heavy rain and severe cold hits southern Bangladesh and Italy.[6][22]

On the 4th, the UN issued a Green Alert in Albania as northern rivers swell with melt water[23]

In its monthly summary, Met Éireann, Ireland's weather service, said December was the coldest month for 28 years for most of the country and the coldest of any month since February 1986 at a few stations.[24]

In Scotland, Fife Council became the first local authority to confirm that its supply of grit was exhausted on 4 January, after it received less than it had ordered from suppliers. Government Ministers denied there was a shortage of grit and salt and insisted there were "very substantial" supplies for Scotland's roads.[25][25]

Italy suffered from both heavy rain in the south and heavy snow in the north.[6]

January 4 saw four villages in Sakhalin lose power as a result of a storm. The 2,000 strong town of Tamari was worst hit. Blizzard struck Sakhalin island, a narrow island in the stormy Sea of Okhotsk, off the coast of Siberia and just 25 miles north of Japan's snowy Hokkaido island.[26]

On the 4th, many motorways in Shandong were closed and 19 flights cancelled in the Yantai International Airport. Eventually the No. 1820 train, carrying more than 800 passengers, started off at after being stranded for 12 hours.

January 4 saw Seoul's heaviest snowfall since 1937 according to the Korea Meteorological Administration (KMA). The blizzard dumped 25.8 centimetres (10.2 in) of snow on the town.[27]

Avalanches and heavy snow hit the Russian's Sakhalin Island, which was smothered by a snow cyclone and blizzard, the Island's emergency officials said.

Civil authorities were put on a major alert in the snow-torn province of Shandong[28] on January 4 as more snow fell in both Shandong and Beijing. Travel wasaffected as the snowstorm paralyzed Beijing on January 4, 2010.[29]

January 5 in northeastern China saw a smooth flow of traffic, with no gridlock or serious traffic accidents being reported[30] after the snowstorm that caused traffic chaos on the 4th, according to the Beijing Traffic Management Bureau.[30] The city's bus and subway train services were up and running according as plan.[30] During the peak hours on Monday morning, the Beijing Subway Operating Company dispatched 20 additional trains to ease the heavy passenger flow.[30] The bus of all routes started off on time that morning, according to the Beijing Public Transport Holdings.[30] Inner Mongolia was still in a critical situation as teams batteled to clear severe rural snow drifts.

4–8 inches (10–20 centimeters) of snow fell in Beijing on the 5th, in the largest snowfall since 1951.[31]

The 2,000 weather modification offices in China, which are responsible for bombing the skies with silver iodide to induce rain or snow, were put into use.[32] Schools in Beijing and Tianjin closed and because the cities' traffic was in chaos. The capital received the harshest Siberian winds in decades.[32] Temperatures for the 5th were forecast to plunge to −16 °C, a 40-year record low, after a daytime maximum of −8 °C.[32] The head of the Beijing Meteorological Bureau, Guo Hu, linked the blizzard-like conditions of the first week of January to unusual atmospheric patterns caused by global warming.[32]

Heavy snow started to fall in Seoul, South Korea[33] and it was reported that a leading North Korean Communist party official had frozen to death, in his home, situated in the country's Sepo kun (or county).

During the traffic peak hours of Monday morning, the Beijing Subway Operating Company dispatched 20 additional subway trains to ease the heavy passenger flow. City workers were deployed to clean the snow in the city's main roads with about 15,710 tonnes of snow-dissolving agent, Beijing Environmental Sanitation Group Co., Ltd. official Zhang Zhiqiang said.[34] On the 4th, many motorways in Shandong were closed and 19 flights were cancelled at Yantai International Airport.

In Inner Mongolia, 13 trains were delayed that Monday in Hohhot, the regional capital, according to the Hohhot railway authorities.


The Met Office issued weather warnings for every region in the UK except the Northern Isles. An extreme weather warning was issued for southern areas for overnight snowfall which could bring accumulations from 25 to 40 centimetres (9.8 to 15.7 in).[35] BBC Weather and the Met Office also warned that temperatures in the Highlands of Scotland could drop to −20 °C (−4 °F) later in the week. The Met Office also confirmed that the UK is experiencing the longest prolonged cold spell since December 1981.[36] The Harrogate district endured over six inches and had been a regular feature on BBC News broadcasts.

A local record of 48 centimetres (19 in) of snow was lying in Aviemore and 3 to 4 feet (0.91 to 1.22 m) of snow was recorded within the Cairngorms National Park. Most parts of Scotland had further snowfalls during the night of 4/5 January.

Due to shortage of road grit conventionally made from rock salt, road grit was being made by or for road-gritters from cooking-type salt mixed with builders' sand;[37] and the public bought up large amounts of cooking salt and table salt from food shops to put on their paths and drives. The Government was reported to have reallocated reserve supplies of road salt and grit from Oxfordshire and Buckinghamshire and sent it to Cumbria and Fife due to the higher priority of even lower salt and grit reserves, along with the greater snow clearance work, according to Radio Oxford.[37]

A heat wave and/or unforeseen monsoon weather also hit parts of Australia in early 2010. Victoria, the scene of horrific bushfires the year before, had a far colder summer, with hot weather arriving more than a month later than usual in 2009.[6][6] August 17 saw a dust storm at Laguna Mar Chiquita as a major drought hit Argentina,[38] and flooding and hailstorms hit southeastern Australia and Queensland in March 2010. The lack of winter precipitation in parts of China, however, contributed to a severe drought in the southwest. Bolivia, Venezuela, Mali, Mauritania, Morocco and Spain have also seen periods of drought in 2009 and 2010. On between May 12 and 26, both Mauritania, the Sénégal River Area and neighbouring parts of both Senegal and Mali faced both a drought and famine in 2010.[39][40]

January 6–9

Snow and fog occurred in Germany from January 3 to January 10.[41] The Finnish railways and Helsinki airport are disrupted by further snowfall and record low temperatures for the Helsinki region.[42]

On January 6, the London Borough of Harrow closed 58 schools and 73 flights were cancelled at Heathrow as 3 cm of snow fell at Heathrow Airport.[43]

Continued snowstorms were forecast for the city of Beijing and the province of Inner Mongolia. Electricity rationing started on January 7.[44] Snow had started falling in Gangsu province by January 7. It also was projected on January 7 to have reached the provinces of Jiangsu, Anhui, Henan and Hubei on January 9 according to China National Radio.[44]

The Chinese government said that China faced its worst ice risk in 30 years. By the night of January 8–9, the major snowstorms predicted on January 7 for the provinces of Jiangsu and Anhui, had arrived and the emergency services were put on alert.

Continued snowstorms were forecast for the city of Beijing and the province of Inner Mongolia. Snow reached the provinces of Jiangsu, Anhui, Henan and Hubei on January 9.[17] One person was killed in Xinjiang Autonomous Region as a result of the storm.[18]


The synoptic situation in northern Europe settled to a steady northeast wind which brought snow showers and belts of snow.

The British Army had to help stranded motorists in southern areas.[36] The Met Office confirmed that 40 centimetres (16 in) of snow fell in some parts of southern England.[45]

A "severe" warning issued by the Met Office was in place for every region in the UK. Scottish First Minister Alex Salmond said Scotland was experiencing its worst winter since 1963.[45]

Further deaths in Wales, Shetland and Aberdeenshire were recorded. Roads in the southeast were left with long traffic jams and abandoned cars. 8,000 schools were closed.[46]

In Eastern Parts, there were accumulations of 40 cm to 50 cm in places. In Kent, six inches of snow fell in four hours in the early evening.

By 7 January 2010, 22 people had died in the UK because of the freezing conditions.[47]

Heavy snow blocked many roads in the Irish Republic.[48] Dublin Airport closed on Wednesday 6 January[49] and again on Friday 9 January. Cork Airport closed on Sunday 10 January at 6:30 pm and didn not re-open until 12:30 pm on Monday 11 January.[50] Dublin Bus canceled all services for a time.[51] Knock Airport was also closed.[52] A new Irish record low temperature of −9 °C (16 °F) was also recorded in Dublin, Ireland. Temperatures in County Limerick dropped to −11.1 °C (12.0 °F). Varying amounts of snow fell across Ireland on the 7th and 8th and road salt reserves began to run low.

The snow fell heavily in some places of Spain including Prades (Tarragona, southern Catalonia) which received 120 cm of snow after a storm lasting over 30 hours. The BBC News reported heavy snowfall as far south as Granada, in Spain.

25 Nepalese people, mostly children, died as a blizzard swept over most of Nepal on January 7.[53][53][54] Snowstorms probably also occurred in mountainous Bhutan and Sikkim, but no reports were forthcoming.

Heavy snow also fell in Chicago on the 7th [55]

In Norway, temperatures hit −42 °C on the 7th in the central village of Folldala as snow fell across Scandinavia[56] and −42.4 °C (−44.3 °F) at Tynset.[57] on the 8th as Kuusamo in Finland, the lowest registered temperature was −37.1 °C (−34.8 °F).[58] Heavy blizzards and snow storms raged across Germany, Scandinavia and the northwestern parts of European Russia.

In Poland, more snow hit the Lower Silesian Voivodeship and nine people died across the country in a 48-hour period, bringing the total weather-related deaths to 139 since the start of November, a police spokesman said.[56] Most of the victims were vagrants, whose tragic lifestyle left them prone to the cold.[56]

Switzerland's 24.5-kilometre (15.2 mi) Gotthard Road Tunnel reopened to trucks on the 8th, following heavy snowfalls over the previous 2 days.[56]

A heavy and snowy cyclone hit the Aleutian Islands on January 7 and 8. Snow accompanied a cold wave moving south through North America on January 8, and Mexico City received snowfall accumulations. In the mountainous regions, temperatures dropped to −10 °C, killing nine people.[59] The snow continued to fall on the 10th.[60] Bitter weather may have wiped out some Alaskan reindeer[61] as temperatures and snow depths exceeded those of the extraordinarily harsh winter of 1963 to 1964.[61]

January 7 saw the snow and ice continuing to affect the snow-tormented counties of Oxfordshire, Warwickshire, Buckinghamshire, Gloucestershire and Northamptonshire.[62] Because of the dangerous conditions concerning the build-up of snow and black ice, Banbury Museum, the Cherwell District Council customer service centre and Cherwell District Council tourist information centre were closed.[62] Many Oxfordshire locations had between 1 and 2 ft of unmelted snow by then.[63] Cherwell District Council workers began using a mixture of table salt and sand instead of their diminishing road grit and rock salt supplies.

Record overnight temperature lows of −22.3 °C (−8.1 °F) were recorded in Altnaharra, Caithnessshire, in the Scottish Highlands on the 7th.[64] as another area of low pressure over the North Sea started bringing further fronts of snow over the east of Great Britain on 7 January, accompanied with cold, easterly winds. The snow continued in to the 9th and the UK almost ran out of road salt, rock salt,[65] table salt and road grit supplies due to the heavy demand from various agencies and local government bodies.[66]

By 7 January 2010 twenty-two people had officially died in the UK because of the freezing conditions.[47] The Department of Health wildly overestimated that the cold weather could cause up to 40,000 excess deaths in the UK if it continued much longer.[67] 122 people had already died in Poland, most of them reportedly homeless[68] and 11 had died in Romania. Deaths in Bosnia and Austria luckily stood at only 4, with Kosovo only losing 1 life so far.

The heavy snowfall across the British Isles between January 6 to 9, resulted in large-scale traffic disruption, closed airports, many canceled trains and hundreds of school closures.[69][70] A polar low developing in the English Channel brought fronts of snow over southern England before moving south and dissipating. Two middle-aged men died after falling into a frozen lake in Leicester, in the English Midlands.[56] 27 major companies in Britain were ordered to halt using gas on the 9th in order to maintain supplies amid unprecedented levels of demand and major companies had their gas turned off on the 8th, in the first such move since 2003, although there was no immediate danger for households of supplies running out.[56] The Automobile Association, a motor vehicle breakdown service, said they had dealt with about 340,000 breakdowns since December 17,[56] including a local government snow plough that had overturned after it had hit black ice near Huddersfield.[56] A representative from Oxfordshire also confessed to the local media that they had a snowplough breakdown earlier in the day.[56] Several thousand schools remained closed and several of the weekend's Premier League football matches were cancelled.[56]



Overnight temperatures of −22.3 °C (−8.1 °F) were recorded in Altnaharra in the Scottish Highlands.[71] Heavy snow fell in the North of England throughout the day giving significant accumulations. A high of −7.7 °C was recorded at Tulloch Bridge.

Heavy snow fell in Denmark on the 8th. By the evening of January 8, the Rügen Islands off the northeast coast of Germany was covered, on average, in 30 centimetres of snow while the capital Berlin was carpeted with snow and ice.[56][72] Autoclub Europa warned that chaotic traffic conditions could potentially leave large parts of Germany completely paralysed as the country prepared for further freezing conditions as forecasters warned that temperatures would drop below −20 degrees Celsius (−4 degrees Fahrenheit) overnight.[56] German officials had also acknowledged a shortage of grit and fear that high winds and drifting snow had closed may German autoroutes and roads, along with parts of Frankfurt airport.[72][73] As shortages in road salt and grit were already being feared, while the authorities recommended that people consider stocking up with a few days' worth of food and water. The A5 autoroute leading from Baden-Württemberg into France was closed on Friday afternoon, leading to a queue of hundreds of lorries building up.[74] The road was opened again on Saturday morning, enabling careful drivers to proceed with their journeys. Snow was also proving to be a major problem in Saxony and the Rhineland.[74] The country's nature protection group N.A.B.U. has recommended that people put out food for birds since the cold and snowy weather had ruined their usual feeding patterns.[74]


Meanwhile, some light snow also fell in Kosovo, Udmurtia and Ryazan Oblast, but heavier snow fell in many parts of Ukraine. Temperatures fell as low as −30 °C and −29 °C in parts of Ukraine and similar temperatures occurred in neighbouring parts of Russia. Heavy show would hit Moscow on the 9th.[75]

A husky dog race took place in Thetford on the 8th.[76]

On Saturday, the 9th of January, Banbury officer PC Paul Froggatt urged people not to try walking on the frozen Oxford Canal by the Castle Quay Shopping Centre in Banbury or in Oxford city.[77][78] Thames Valley Police had also logged cases of people falling through the ice in Milton Keynes, Bracknell and Aylesbury.[77][78] One man even tried to drive his car down a part of the frozen canal in Oxford and nearly died after it fell through the ice, while another man died on Teesside as he tried to rescue some puppies that were stranded on melting ice on the River Tees. Oxford City Council also warned of the dangers of playing on the frozen canal and/or frozen lakes.

A new wave of heavy snow was first reported in central and northern of France on the 9th, with the both the Cotentin Peninsula and Paris being the worst-affected parts of France.[56][79] The French government said all non-essential travel should be avoided in these localities.[56] Significant snowfalls caused major delays to train services, blocked roads and some 15,000 people in areas around city of Arles experienced power cuts power lines collapsed under the weight 30 centimetres of snow.[56] Airlines cancelled a quarter of flights on Paris's main Charles de Gaulle airport.[56] Road salt and grit supplies were running low in some districts due to their unexpectedly heavy use.

January 10–11

Main article: 2010 Albania floods


Heavy rain and melt water caused the worst floods in Albania in nearly 50 years, as 2, 500 homes being evacuated. An artificial lake in the Kosinj valley overflowed after it rose by 8 centimetres in 1 hour. The worst hit areas in Albania were the Shkodra district and to a lesser degree Tirana.[81]

On 10 January, Croatia declared a national flood emergency as the Neretva river valley is flooded. The town of Metkovic was also flooded as the river reached a near-record high level.[82] Northern Croatia also got flooded in related storm system. Heavy hailstorms also hit the Dubrovnik that day.[81]

Snow hit the Czech Republic on 10 January.[83]

During the early hours of 10 January, light snow showers spread across parts of Central England and Wales. The maximum temperature was −13.5 °C (7.7 °F) in Altnaharra and low of −18.4 °C (−1.1 °F) was recorded at Kinbrace. On the 11th rain, sleet and snow travelled northwards throughout the early hours. Allenheads in England had fears over a potential 15 ft (4.6 m) snowdrift. A low of −21.0 °C (−5.8 °F) was recorded in Altnaharra in Highland Region.

More than 300 flights were cancelled in the 10th and 11th at Germany's Frankfurt Airport. All three runways were cleared and being used by the 12th despite of light snow falls that day.


The snowstorms and blizzards of the 11th brought widespread travel chaos to Germany, Austria, Switzerland and Hungary.[84] Airports, Motorways and railways were closed en masse due to heavy snow and ice.[84] Lithuania, Latvia, Estonia, Finland, Liechtenstein, the Czech Republic and Slovakia also reported some snowfall.

The Banbury Guardian and Oxford Mail released videos and photos of Oxford and Banbury on the 11th as part of a name and shame campaign against the idiotic people walking on the frozen canal.[85] [86]

January 10 saw heavy snow fall in Chicago.[55]

On January 10, Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa cancelled a trip to Washington to monitor L.A.'s response to the Southern California rainstorms.[87] Villaraigosa had been scheduled to address the U.S. Conference of Mayors' winter meeting at the nation's capital on Wednesday and was going speak about the success of the city's summer jobs program for at-risk youth.[87]

Freezing rain storms battered parts of Sichuan, Yunnan and Hubei, killing dozens of people.

On 10 January, 1 person died and 5,435 were evacuated after a snowstorm in Xinjiang Uygur Autonomous Region according to the Ministry of Civil Affairs. A total of 261,800 people in 12 counties or cities were affected by the blizzards.[88]

On 11 January, intense snowstorms hit a still beleaguered Europe. Many cars and a lorry were stuck in drifting snow near the northern German town of Soehlen. The German transport ministry warned people to travel on essential journey only.[84] Polish authorities reported that there were about 140 hypothermia deaths in Poland, that nearly 50,000 Polish residents without electricity, that the PKP trains were delayed by as much as 9 hours and that most of Poland's homeless shelters were overflowing. Some shops were running out of drinking chocolate.[89] A similar situation was also occurring in the shops and homeless shelters of the Czech Republic. Snow also fell in Belarus.

Coal supplies ran low at power plants as the death toll rose to two in the strong snowstorm in the Altai and temperatures fell to −40 °C on 12 January.[90]

January 12–14

On 12 January, heavy snow caused hundreds of accidents, halted flights, and downed power lines in Poland; more than 160 people were trapped overnight on a frozen stretch of German roadway. Hundreds of road accidents were also reported in Germany over the weekend, especially along the Baltic Coast, where two men were killed in a car they were driving when it hit a tree in Nordvorpommern after skidding in the treacherous conditions. Austria, Switzerland and Liechtenstein were also badly hit by snowy and freezing conditions.


Both the National Beef Association and National Farmers' Union Scotland asked for the Scottish Government to help rebuild steadings, which in some cases are not covered by insurance. Heavy snowfall continued for a second day in Aberdeenshire, Aberdeen and Rutland.[91]

A further 5 to 10 cm of snow fell across the UK during the midday of January 12, including Stafford in Staffordshire. Many schools were once again closed across England and Wales. There were many road accidents and closures; the M25 motorway was down to one lane between Leatherhead and Reigate whilst roads stretching right across southern Great Britain were untreated causing havoc for commuters. Gatwick and Birmingham airports were closed and many flights were delayed at Heathrow.

During 13 January the weather system continued north affecting much of Northern England before reaching Scotland.[92]

Eight of Oxfordshire's 33,000-volt electricity substations, which were situated in Kennington, Kidlington, Wheatley, Wantage, Deddington, Eynsham, Berinsfield and Cholsey, near Wallingford failed apparently due to an electrical overload, causing several local blackouts; later saboteurs were officially blamed in the damage, and not an overload or mechanical failure as initially thought, according to Oxford Mail.[93] The only way into the Wye Valley on the 13th, was by snow plough, tractor or quad bike.[94] Teachers and parents helped dig out Princes Risborough School as about 6 inches of snow falls across Buckinghamshire and Oxfordshire, according to Bicester Advertiser and Bucks Herald newspaper. Peter Cornal of Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents and Principal Jonathan Johnson of Aylesbury Vale Academy both warned people not to skate on Watermead Lake in Buckinghamshire.


On 14 January, southerly to south-easterly winds brought bands of snow to northern parts of Britain. An inch of snow fell in Glasgow with further accumulations in areas outside the other towns and cities. Travel was disrupted somewhat.

About 440 Welsh schools were either fully or partially closed on Thursday the 14th.[95]

The English snowfall began to ease on the 14th and the British government ordered an inquiry into the road salt and grit shortage scandal crisis, travel disruption and the poor handling of the disaster by various British companies and agencies.[96]

As the thaw took hold in the UK and France, rain began to fall across the UK. An 11-year-old girl named Naeemah Achha slid up on a patch of ice outside St. Michael from St. John Primary School in Blackburn, Lancashire on the 14th and died later in Royal Manchester Children's Hospital the next day.[97][98] Head teacher Kay Cant described her as an intelligent, vivacious, kind and popular girl. Blackburn with Darwen Council's leader Michael Lee described her death as a very shocking incident.[98]

It was revealed on the 14th that all of the British county councils, London boroughs and unitary authorities were advised by the government to have six days' supplies of road salt in 2009.[97][99] Up to 30 councils rejected last year's offer of thousands of tonnes of de-icing salt at a reduced price, to use on the roads this winter according to the BBC.[97][99] The British Salt Director David Stephen made an offer out of the firm's 60,000 tonnes stockpile at Middlewich, Cheshire, in April 2009, but virtually no one to take up the offer.[97][99] Evidence suggests that only a few took up the government's advice. The Highways Agency had 13 days worth of road salt, while Glasgow, Kirklees, Derbyshire, Derby City, Buckinghamshire, Cherwell District and the London Borough of Harrow took up the offer and raised their stock piles to seven days worth. The Cherwell Borough, Bicester Parish, Oxfordshire, Slough borough, Harrow, Leicestershire, Buckinghamshire, Fife, Brighton and Hove unitary authority, Liverpool city, Pembrokeshire, Lancashire, Belfast city and Perth and Kinross councils nearly to run out of salt.[97][99] Scotland, Cumbria, Northumbria and Northern Ierland were getting priority access to salt due to the severity of the local landscape and storm activity.[97]

There were also road closures in Ceredigion including the A4120 at Ponterwyd, and the A4086 at Nant Peris in Gwynedd had been shut down due to hazardous driving conditions. All of Caerphilly's 90 schools and Rhondda Cynon Taf's (RTC) 130 schools either were fully or partially shut except to pupils sitting there.[95] To Wales' Education Minister Leighton Andrews, Welsh First Minister Carwyn Jones and the WJEC exam board helped organise the Welsh GCSEs and A-level exam locations.[95] A Merthyr Tydfil exam was held in a local sports centre's hockey arena according to the BBC.

Temperatures of +43.6C were reported in parts of Australia as a heat wave hit most of the country.[100] Heavy rain also fell in parts of Indonesia and Queensland, Australia.[100]

January 15–18

As the snow cleared from the United States, the British Isles and Europe, rain began to fall in place on the 14th and the snow also began to relent in both China, Korea and Japan on the 15th. Light snow was reported in Latvia on the 14th and 15th.

On the 15th, Greater Manchester Police said seven people had been injured when 10 cars crashed on the A627(M) in Oldham.[101] Met Office severe weather warnings covered Wales and western parts of England and Scotland and snow was forecast for the Pennines and Scottish and Welsh hills. The Environment Agency has warned about flooding in some areas of England and Wales. BBC weather forecaster Sarah Keith-Lucas warned of localised flooding in western parts of the UK caused by melting snow, rain and gale-force winds.[101]

Later on, the Environment Agency warned that heavy rain and snow melting in slightly warmer temperatures meant that there was a risk of some localised flooding from drains, especially in Wales and parts of England, but homes were unlikely to be affected as 15 flood watches were put in place.[102] They warned that flood warnings for possible isolated river flooding in these areas, as heavy rain moves in from the south west on Friday evening.[102] The Met Office and said heavy rain would move in from the west accompanied by strong to gale force winds on Saturday.[102] The Scottish Environment Protection Agency had five flood watches under way.[102] Thames Valley Police warned motorists about surface flooding and aquaplaning on Oxfordshire's roads.

The 15th brought rain and thawing to much of southwest England and a pocket around Greater Manchester. In the city of Manchester rain on frozen ground had overnight caused glazed frost which had largely (but not completely) gone by morning, and at midday the clouds were running fast from the south; the January snowfall was melting fast, but the pre-Christmas snowfall, which was trodden had half thawed to slush and then frozen hard to solid ice overnight, was slower to melt. In Scotland the thaw melted fresh snow. Flood warnings were issued.

Snow fell in parts of southern Scotland and Yorkshire on the 16th. The Cairngorm Ski Centre was closed as an army of diggers was trying to clear its car park after further snowfalls. The river Derwent was put under a flood watch in places on the 16th.

On January 17, Inner Mongolia Autonomous Region was given more than 850 tons of grain, edible oil and other daily supplies, 4,950 tons of coal and 900 tons of emergency cattle fodder.[103]

On January 17, both melting snow, heavy rain and frozen ground have caused flooding in much of England, Scotland and Wales.[104] The Environment Agency issued a total of 23 flood warnings were issued in England, one in force for Scotland and two in Wales.[104] In Scotland a landslide led to the temporally closure of the A76 in Dumfries and Galloway, while a section of the M74 was shut temporally shut due to flooding.[104]


Many properties in Maesteg, Bridgend, Ebbw Vale and Monmouth were also flooded. Mid and West Wales Fire service sent extra appliances to the Carmarthen Bay holiday village at Kidwelly, where the flooding was described as 'major to severe'.[104] The River Wye, River Dee (Welsh: Afon Dyfrdwy) in the lower Dee Valley, River Cherwell (at Banbury) and River Severn were all in full flood.[104]

Severn Trent Water, which provides water to central England and parts of Wales, said it had drafted in extra staff as ruptured and frozen pipes began to thaw.[104] Many pipes had ruptured in the Welsh Marches and a sewerage pipe had become blocked in outer Birmingham.[104] The company's senior operations manager, Fraser Pithie, said the firm had been called out to more than 470 burst and ruptured pipes since the 10th and their call centre staff had taken more than 10,000 calls.[104]

January 17–26

On Sunday, January 17 to Saturday, January 26, a series of five very powerful rainstorms bore down on Southern California, and spread eastward on the 20th, piling more snow across the Great Plains and even as far as parts of Pennsylvania and New Jersey.[105] 200 homes were evacuated as floods hit parts of California as up to 6 inches (15 cm) of rain fell in the first of the storms.[105] Rescue and flood prevention services soon got everything under control, but one man was killed when a tree fell onto his house.[105] Two horses died after being hit by lighting in a Santa Barbara field. Rare tornado warnings were enforced in parts of Southern California, including southern Los Angeles, Long Beach, southeastern San Diego County, and Anaheim. Flash flood watches covered Los Angeles, Santa Barbara, and Ventura counties.[105] An EF-0 tornado was reported in southeastern San Diego County that lasted for 1 minute, 30 seconds. Jim Rouiller, the senior energy meteorologist at Planalytics Inc., said that the storms (more specifically, the fifth storm, which was the strongest one) were the worst series of storms since 1997 (the one that caused the 1997 Northern California New Year's Day Flood). The fifth storm also neared the record of the lowest pressure system ever experienced in San Diego, registering a minimum pressure of 973 millibars.[105] Rouiller expected that evening's storm to bring from 4 to 12 inches (100 to 300 mm) of rain, severe mudslides, a few tornadoes and heavy mountain snow ranging from 6 to 15 feet (1.8 to 4.6 m) across the Sierra Nevada.[105] A heavy rain storm hit Santee, California, on January 19.[106]

Heavy rain fell in Oxfordshire and King's Sutton, causing some flooding. The River Cherwell nearly flooded Banbury and parts of Oxford. Light snow fell in the Pennines the 19th.

January 19–30

On 20 January, heavy rainstorms wreaked havoc in Haifa, as snow covered Mount Hermon in Israel.

Both Wakehurst Place, near Ardingly, West Sussex and Bedgebury Pinetum, near Lamberhurst in Kent, were damaged.[107] Iain Parkinson, Wakehurst's woodland and conservation manager who has worked on the estate for 23 years, said it was the worst storm he had ever seen in the park.[107]

California state water officials warned on January 21 that one week of heavy rain and snow was not enough to end the drought,[108][109] which is entering its fourth year by 2010.[108][109] According to measurements on the Thursday, the average water content of state's mountain ranges' snowpacks, considered the state's biggest de facto 'reservoir', was at 107% percent of normal capacity.[108][109] As the fourth and potentially most powerful of the week's storms slammed in to California, officials predicted as much as four feet (1.2 metres) of snow would fall in Northern California.[108][109]

A new snow storm came over the Peter the Great Gulf, near Vladivostok on January 21.[110] The Onland Mountains and Sikhote-Alin Mountains were buried in snow as the weather system swept through Primorsky and Khabarovsk Krais, Russia. Lake Khanka froze over and was then covered in snow.[110] The ice on the lake was reported to be several inches thick and the snow was spreading into China's Heilongjiang province.

21 January witnessed the final day of some Banbury schools remaining shut after 2 weeks general closure, in which most remained shut throughout the fortnight. The video of people skating and walking on the Oxford Canal was shown on regional TV again, along with a nationwide online version.[111] Heavy rain fell in Oxfordshire, Warwickshire and Leicestershire as light snow fell in the Pennines on the 22nd.

The snowstorm that began on Friday night, the 22nd was also hitting parts of Bulgaria, where a man suffering from a heart attack died in the country's northeastern region of Silistra, when the ambulance he was being carried on was road that was blocked by several snow drifts.[112] Power, gas and water cuts occurred in Istanbul.[112] In Turkey's western region, near the Greek and Bulgarian borders, villages were cut off and all the major roads were blocked by heavy snow.[112] A bus overturned in Istanbul, injuring 10 people; Bulgarian authorities urged people to avoid travel due to heavy snowfall.[112] Dozens of stranded cars and trucks were abandoned due to heavy snow in eastern Bulgaria and a train was trapped near the border with Romania.[112] Some snow was also reported in neighboring parts of Romania.

Freshly fallen snow blanketed the north side of the San Gabriel Mountains on the morning after the fourth storm of the week dissipated on January 23, 2010 northwest of Wrightwood, California.[113][114] Snow was reported in many parts of California.[113] Severe rain fell in parts of Los Angeles[113][114] on the 24th. 500 people were evacuated from a small village in La Paz County, Arizona due to a flash flood.[115]

A total of four people died on the 24th and 25th as snowstorms hit Turkey.[112] The frozen body of 78-year-old Mehmet Aksit was found outside the small town of Akkisla in central Kayseri province after relatives reported him missing.[112] On the 24th, Nuri Turhan, an 81-year-old Korean War veteran's corpse was found in a mountainous region of Turkey's Aydin province, where he had gotten lost walking the day before[112] and a 75-year-old man died of hypothermia in the northwestern Turkish province of Tekirdag.[112] The 4th person was found dead in a fierce snowstorm that caused power outages in Turkey and traffic chaos in neighbouring Bulgaria on the 25th.[112]

Turkish climatologists working for Istanbul's Natural Disaster Coordination Committee told Turkey's Hurriyet Daily News that snowfall was predicted to continue until Monday evening and reach about 35 centimetres (14 inches) in parts of Istanbul.[112]

It was revealed that at least 22 people had died due to low temperatures in Romania in the last five days by January 25.[116][117][118][119]

In late 2009 and early 2010 a series of massive snow and ice storms that swept the Dakotas caused a number of Indian Reservations to lose power, heat, and running water for an extended period of time. The storms were most severe in both Ziebach and Dewey counties, South Dakota. The heavy snow, ice storms and low temperatures of January 26 led to Interstate 90 being closed from Chamberlain to the Minnesota border.[120] At nightfall on Monday the 25th, Interstate 29 was closed from Sioux Falls to the North Dakota border.[120]

Power company officials estimated that about 7,600 customers in South Dakota and 100 in North Dakota did not have power on Monday. Some phone systems have also experienced brief telecommunications outages.[120] Kristi Truman, director of the North Dakota Office of Emergency Management was concerned about failing water and power supplies.[120]

Power outages began with a storm in December knocking down around 5,000 power poles, and has been accelerated by an ice storm on January 22 knocking down another 3,000 power lines on the reservation. Among the tribes of South Dakota said to be suffering from the multiple storms are the Cheyenne River Sioux, Crow Creek Sioux Tribe, Flandreau-Santee Sioux Tribe, Lower Brule Sioux Tribe, Rosebud Sioux Tribe, Sisseton-Wahpeton Oyate and Standing Rock Sioux Tribe.[121]

"There's been winters this bad before, but not with rain so bad it freezes the power lines and snaps the poles", said Joseph Brings Plenty, the 38-year-old chairman of the Cheyenne River Sioux tribe.[122] The worst day was on the 28th, when a Native American froze to death in his home after running out of fuel.

The reservations were further buffeted by the First North American blizzard of 2010, which further depleted foodstocks and exacerbated the power problems.

25 Nepalese people, mostly children, died as a blizzard swept over most of Nepal on January 7.[53][54] Snowstorms probably also occurred in mountainous Bhutan and Sikkim, but no reports were forthcoming.

January 28–31

On January 28 floods tore through the River Dnieper's and Prypiat River's floodplains. Climatologists from the Ukrainian Hydro-meteorological Centre warned that the 2010 spring flood could be most severe in the past 10 years and that snow packs in some regions are more than usual.[123][124] They also told the Ukrainian news agency UKRINFORM that February would bring more snow.[123] Weather forecasters said that the abnormal winter in Ukraine has seen severe snowfalls being replaced with long-lasting frosts and temperatures as low as −30 °C[123] and the predicted flooding was an inevitability, both along the Prypiat River in the Volyn Oblast and in Ternopil Oblast and the River Dnieper in Kiev as the snow layer is twice as high than in recent years.[123]

A stiff frost, temperatures of −2 °C to −3 °C and a light mist occurred in Oxfordshire and western Northamptonshire, during the night as a cold front crossed the UK. Several cars crashed due to skidding on black ice.

On January 28, blizzards and severe sub-zero temperatures that have killed more than a million livestock in Mongolia would force thousands of herders to migrate to shantytowns near the capital city of Ulan Bator.[125] Extreme winter weather that began in December and followed a hard summer drought that prevented farmers from stockpiling food for their livestock.[125] Dangerously heavy snow and temperatures as low as −40 °C have affected 19 of Mongolia's 21 provinces, with more than 14,000 Mongolian and Chinese Red Cross volunteers across the region scrambling to deliver emergency food aid to impoverished herders who have lost nearly all their cattle.[125]

The extreme weather had killed more than one million livestock, the herders' main source of income, according to the National Emergency Management Agency (NEMA) on the 29th.[126] The bad weather has also reduced food security, intensified poverty and increased domestic rural-urban migration for many families.[126] Central Dundgobi Province is one of those in the grip of a 'dzud' event (that is to say a 'major natural disaster').[126] A local herder named Javzmaa Batbold, a herder in Adaatsag County, Dundgobi province said that 120 of his 500 cattle had died so far.[126] His ger (a traditional Mongolian felt and wood dwelling) was completely covered in snow, and only when the door's side cleared off did it reveal a dwelling lay underneath. The weather became rather extreme as 80 percent of Mongolia's territory was covered by snow, with depths of 20 to 90 centimetres.[126]

The State Emergency Commission issued an appeal to Mongolia's people to launch a campaign to offer aid to herders and called for the international community to donate food, medicines and equipment as well as funds to help herders.[126] Most cattle in Adaatsag county of Dundgovi Province (Central Gobi), Mongolia died of hypothermia on the 30th.[126] Fuel supplies were also running low.[126]

Snowstorms hit the east coast of the United States and the Sierra Nevada of California on the 30th and 31st.[127]

Heavy snow fell in the German Rhineland on the 30th and 31st. Travel chaos was widespread as the snow spread into Hungary and the rest of Germany.[128]

Heavy snow storms also hit Luxembourg on January 31.[129]

The 30th saw heavy snow storms hit the East Coast of America.[130]

A nor'easter dumped tons of snow over much of central and eastern parts of the United States. The nor'easter unleashed heavy snow over the Central United States, and left some places with over 15 inches or (39 cm) of snow. It then moved eastward and made a sly turn up the coast of America, and left some places with over 12 inches of snow on Saturday, January 30, 2010. Rain and floods also hit Southern California. 6 inches of rain and temperatures of 15 °C were recorded at Long Beach and L.A.[131] on the 31st.

February

February 1–4

On February 1, the Chinese government aid arrived in Mongolia and included 10 million Yuan's (1.46 million U.S. dollars') worth of food, portable power generators and quilts.[132] Mr. Miyeegombyn Enkhbold, Deputy Prime Minister of Mongolia and head of the State Emergency Commission,[132] said the aid given showed an embodiment of brotherhood between China and Mongolia, and Chinese Ambassador Yu Hongyao said he was confident that Mongolians would overcome the disaster in time.[132] It was said to be the worst snow storms in both Mongolia and Inner Mongolia in at least 30 years.[132] The Red Cross Society of China has also announced a donation of 30,000 dollars for Mongolia,[132] and Kazakhstan sent several hundred tonnes of food aid to the country. Mongolia formally requested aid from the United Nations on the 2nd, after the extreme cold is calculated to have killed about 3% of the nation's 44,000,000 head of cattle thus far.[133]

Main article: First North American blizzard of 2010


On February 1, utility crews were working overtime to get power back to the 14,000 residents of Cheyenne River Sioux Reservation.[134] The wind chill factor averaged about −25° and there was about 1 foot of snow on the ground on average.[134]

A powerful Alberta clipper-type storm came from the north and headed towards an area of moist air left over from the previous day's thunderstorm over the Midwest on 1 February and was merging over central North America. It was estimated that it could potentially drop up to 6 inches on the Canadian Prairies and North Dakota initially and eventually add 2 more inches as it hung around overnight.

February 1 saw the earlier Californian storm track its way through northern Mexico and New Mexico. It would shortly hit the east coast and cause chaos in the Washington, D.C., Virginia and Maryland areas by the February 6.

A cyclone and heavy rain-induced floods hit the Canary islands on February 1 and 2.[135] An unusual event dropped 82 mm of rain and flooded out 27,000 homes over a 24-hour period. Some mobile phones become inoperable due to storm-related interference and power supplies were cut overnight in some places. The average February rainfall is only 36 millimetres.[135]

February 4 saw the worst winter in Beijing in 50 years, worst in Seoul in 70 years.[136]

The snow and frost activity was proving to be exceptionally bad that winter across northern India. Official reports suggest that the states of Punjab, Bihar, Haryana and Uttar Pradesh have borne the brunt of the freezing temperatures in India.[136]

Officials at Canada's Vancouver Games were also worried about the lack of snow and frost as the city experienced its warmest January ever as the temperature never went below -2°C . The average daily high and low for January 2010 was 9.7 and 4.3°C at the airport, which was way above the average high of 5°C and the average low of -1°C for January. No snow was also recorded in January compared to an average of about 17cms and an average snow depth of 1cm. [136]

The east coast had records various record low temperatures in southern states such as Georgia Alabama and Florida in the USA.[136] The eastern seaboard, had like the Western Seaboard also suffered one of the worst winters on record. An already snow bound Washington, D.C. was expected to receive up to another 20 inches of snow that weekend . Snow was also threatening the American football championship event known as the Super Bowl.[136]

11 were killed by avalanches in Farah, Bamyan, Ghor and Daykundi provinces between the 4th and the 8th a spokesman of the Afghanistan National Disasters Management Authority said.[137] The Afghan flash floods and avalanches left 20 others dead in the rest of the country on February 8.[137] The provincial authorities had summoned an emergency meeting and loya Jurga to discuss responses on 8 February. Both Shah Wali Kot and Shorandam districts were the worst affected. Afghanistan generally expects about 400,000 people every year, according to experts at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).[137]

A series of avalanches caused by a storm in eastern Afghanistan killed 172 people on February 8 and 9.[138][139][140]

February 5–11

Power outages in both the Dakotas now covered only 100 rural electric customers and minimal numbers in Bismarck, North Dakota by February 5.[141]

The second big snowstorm of the winter hammered the Washington, D.C. area on February 5.[142] The El Niño phenomenon was blamed for the unusually high sea surface temperatures in the Pacific Ocean that moved east, thus pulling rainfall along with it.[142] Normally, El Niño brings increased rainfall across the east-central and eastern Pacific, leading to drier than normal conditions over northern Australia, Indonesia and the Philippines.[142]

The storm created historic snowfall totals in the Middle Atlantic states, rivaling the Knickerbocker Storm of 1922, as well as extensive flooding and landslides in Mexico. The blizzard stretched from Mexico and New Mexico to New Jersey, killing forty-one people in Mexico, New Mexico, Maryland, Virginia and other places along its track.

Some places across Eastern West Virginia, Maryland, Northern Virginia, Washington, D.C., and Delaware were buried in between 2 and 3 feet (0.61 and 0.91 m) of snow,[143] causing air, rail, and Interstate highway travel to come to a halt.[144] On February 6, authorities said about 4 inches of rain fell in Hollywood Hills and 3.2 inches in Santa Barbara.[145]


The snow storms of February 6 and 7 left record levels of snow in many cities. Approximately 2 ft (60 cm) of snow had fallen by midday on Saturday.[143] The mayor of Washington, D.C., and the governors of Virginia and Maryland declared states of emergency as the storm hit both Washington, D.C., Virginia, Maryland, West Virginia, Delaware, Pennsylvania and New Jersey.[143] Amtrak canceled several trains between New York and Washington, D.C., and also between Washington, D.C. and some southern destinations.[143] The storm arrived less than two months after a December storm dumped more than 16 inches (41 cm) of snow in Washington, D.C.. Many power outages were also reported in the city.[143]

February 7 saw yet more major power outages in the Washington, D.C. region. At least 420,000 homes were under a blackout as the snow felled trees and cut power lines.[146] Some 300,000 homes were without electricity in Maryland and neighboring Virginia, while Washington, D.C. was reporting an initial figure of 100,000 power outages for that day.[146] Emergency workers struggled to restore power as 2 ft (61 cm) of snow and a record snowfall 3 ft of (91 cm) fell on Maryland. Transport was badly disrupted from West Virginia to southern New Jersey.[146] Washington, D.C., Virginia and Maryland have declared a short term state of emergency, allowing them to activate the National Guard in order to help cope with the storm's onslaught.[146]

A father and daughter of McKeesport were killed by carbon monoxide poisoning after improperly using a domestic petrol generator after a power outage.[147][148] On the February 7 two children drowned trying to cross the swollen Chapulin River in the central state of Guanajuato, and other child deaths occurred in Angangueo, Zitácuaro, and Ocampo. In total, twenty-eight deaths in the states of Michoacán, Mexico State, and the Distrito Federal (Mexico City) in Mexico have been attributed to the storm on February 6 and 7.[149]

On the 7th 10 people are dead in across Kandahar Province according to the Afghan Red Crescent Society (ARCS). Najibullah Barith, ARCS's director in Kandahar complained of lack of the local and national resources.[137]

A series of avalanches caused by a storm in eastern Afghanistan killed 172 people on February 8 and 9.[138][139][140]

On the 7th 10 people are dead in across Kandahar Province according to the Afghan Red Crescent Society (ARCS). Najibullah Barith, ARCS's director in Kandahar complained of lack of the local and national resources.[137]

11 were killed by avalanches in Farah, Bamyan, Ghor and Daykundi provinces between the 4th and the 8th a spokesman of the Afghanistan National Disasters Management Authority said.[137] The Afghan flash floods and avalanches left 20 others dead in the rest of the country on February 8.[137] The provincial authorities had summoned an emergency meeting and loya Jurga to discuss responses on 8 February. Both Shah Wali Kot and Shorandam districts were the worst affected. Afghanistan generally expects about 400,000 people every year, according to experts at the United Nations Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs (OCHA).[137]

A series of avalanches caused by a storm in eastern Afghanistan killed 172 people on February 8 and 9.[138][139][140]

The 2010 Salang avalanches consisted of a series of at least 36 avalanches[138] that struck the southern approach to the Salang tunnel north of Kabul, Afghanistan on February 8 and 9 in 2010, burying over two miles of road, killing at least 172 people[139] and trapping over 2,000 of travellers.[150][151][152][153] They were caused by a freak storm in the Hindu Kush mountains located in Afghanistan.[151][152][153][154]

Several heavy avalanches killed 15 and on a highway north of Kabul killed at least 15 and injured 55 on the 8th and 9 February, according to the Afghan Ministry of Public Health (MoPH). A few other avalanches and landslides also hit other parts of the snow laden Hindu Kush at this time.[155]

60 died and hundred were still missing On February 9 a treacherous mountain pass in Afghanistan series of avalanches smashed into and badly damaged an 2.6 km (1.6 mi) long Soviet-built Salang tunnel after several days of heavy snow in the Hindu Kush.[108] Afghan Interior Minister, Hanif Atmar 24 dead were found and 40 more were feared dead. The Defence Minister, Abdul Rahim Wardak said 3,000 people had been trapped in vehicles along the mountain pass, that is at an altitude 3,400 meters (11,000 feet), but about 2,500 were rescued later that day.[108] The road passengers got trapped in their vehicles out side of the Salang Tunnel, 9 miles north of Kabul. The International Security Assistance Force (ISAF) sent 2 helicopters to help evacuate people and drop essential supplies, a spokesman for the Afghanistan National Disasters Management Authority (ANDMA) said. Only helicopters and pack horses could get there.[155]

Main article: Second North American blizzard of 2010


A powerful Alberta clipper from western Canada and moist air from a line of thunderstorms over the mid-western United States merged over the central US on the 7th. In some places this dropped 6 inches (15 cm) over the Central and Eastern United States, much of it over areas already hit by the previous blizzard. 10–15 inches (25–38 cm) was expected to fall on Washington, D.C., and up to 1–2 feet (0.30–0.61 m) of snow was forecast from New York City northward into New England.[156] Several inches of snow fell in both Washington, D.C. and New York City on the night of February 10 and 11.

On February 8, there was nearly 45 centimetres (18 in) of snow recorded at Reagan National Airport, and nearby Dulles International Airport recorded a local record of 80 centimetres (31 in).[157] The storms were dubbed "Snowmageddon", by US president Barack Obama, after an SUV in his motorcade carrying journalists was damaged by a snapped limb, injuring one person.[157] An area all the way from Pennsylvania to New Jersey, across the BosWash corridor and south down to Virginia, was under at least 60 centimetres (24 in) of snow. Parts of Northern Maryland had 90 centimetres (35 in).[157] The storm killed three people.

Snow began to fall throughout Oxfordshire, North London, and Bavaria on the February 8 and February 10. Heavy winds and snow flurries also hit parts of Leicestershire, Northamptonshire, in Turkey, and Amur Krai, on February 9. 1 person suffered moderate injuries after slipping on ice in one of the rural northern districts of Amur Krai. On February 10 a deep cyclone formed over the Adriatic Sea bringing heavy snowfall over large parts of Bulgaria, Serbia, Macedonia and lesser parts of Romania. Severe weather warnings have been issued in these countries.[158] In Western Bulgaria it snowed non-stop for more than 48 hours, with up to a metre of snow accumulation in Kyustendil.

United States federal government activities were ground to a halt by the, in some places 3 ft deep, snowfall in Washington, D.C. on the 10th.[159]

February 11 saw heavy snow east coast USA,[160] but power workers resorted electricity supplies to 100,000 users in Maryland on February 11 and some more was predicted for the next day.[161]

On the 11th, about least 10 cm (4 in) of snow fell in some areas and strong winds have caused drifting in places across Kent and East Sussex.[162] Snow also fell in Sheffield, Berkshire, Brighton and the Grampian Mountains.[162] Dover's coastguard helped dig out a stranded ambulance in the town. Kent County Council said all primary routes and secondary routes where possible had been gritted on Wednesday afternoon ahead of the snow showers.[162] Kent Fire and Rescue Service said it was helping some motorists stuck in snow drifts in parts of the county including Margate, Dover and Lydd.[162] Chief Inspector Simon Black, of Kent Police, said that all main routs were passable, but some were down to a single snow-free lane and BBC Radio Kent said that drivers should make essential journeys.[162] Also 4 of its 4x4 vehicles were helping to transfer staff and patients to and from hospitals in Eastbourne and Hastings, in East Sussex. The exit slip road off the M20, at junction 11a, closed because of the snow.[162] A Dover lad was moderately burnt after spilling paraffin he was trying to put in to a portable domestic generator unit that day.

February 12–19

Following a storm in the southeast United States on February 12–13, snow was on the ground simultaneously in all 50 U.S. states, an event believed never to have occurred previously.[163] Snow was confirmed in 49 states by February 13, and small patches of remnant snow on the north face of Mauna Kea in Hawai'i were confirmed soon after. The snow on February 12–13 forced the cancellation of Bi-Lo Myrtle Beach Marathon XIII after the 5k portion had been run the previous night. A record depth of 12.5 inches of snow fell within 24 hours in the DallasFort Worth urban metro on the 13th.[164] The result of the massive snowstorm led to whole school districts being shut down and over 200,000 buildings were left without power, and forced to use fire and candles to light and heat their homes. A 1 ft tall wind-induced wave swept 3 people off of various southern Californian beaches on the 14th, slightly injuring one. Light snow fell in both parts of Hampshire and Fife, and heavily in the mountainous regions of Sakhalin Island on the 15th. About 1800 out of 2400 flights at Hartsfield Jackson Atlanta Airport were cancelled on February 13. Numerous minor car accidents happened all around the Metro Atlanta area.

Moderate amounts of snow fell in Gwent and Northamptonshire on the 16th. Weather forecasters warned of more snow predicted across South East Wales and parts of Central England.[165] Moderate snow fall was reported in both Oxfordshire, Northamptonshire, Leicestershire, the Malvern Hills, Pembrokeshire, Bristol, Aberdeenshire and Greater London on the 17 and 18 February. The various London Authorities warned of growing travel chaos in London on the 18th.[166]

Over two inches of snow had fallen in part of Gwent,[167] Pembrokeshire[168][169] and Gloucestershire on the 18th. The roadways in the Gloucestershire town of Dursley had been quickly covered in snow that as a cold weather front moved over the west of the county of Gloucestershire,[170] Chief Inspector Steve Porter, of Gloucestershire Constabulary told motorists to take care and warned that many roads including the B4221 at Gorsley and the A4136 at Longhope had had major accidents.[171] Most of the roads would be closed due to heavy snow for the next few days.[171] Moderate amounts of snow also fell in part of Oxfordshire and Northamptonshire on the 19th.

February 20 – 22

Heavy snowfall occurred in Wales and the Midlands between the 18th and 20th.[172][173][174] including in the Welsh town of Pant Glas, Gwynedd between the 18th and 20th.[172][173][174]


Heavy snow in Ireland forced the cancellation of the National Hurling League (NHL) hurling match between Kilkenny and Tipperary at Semple Stadium in Thurles on February 20.[175] A horse racing meeting in Naas was abandoned due to heavy snow the following day.[176]

Light snow fell in Oxfordshire overnight on the 20th and 21st, causing minor traffic disruption. Manchester Airport was heavily disrupted late on the 20th, closed at 07.10am on the 21st, but opened later that morning after much heavy work clearing the snow off of the runways. Flights were still disrupted by midday.[177]

A Eurostar train, with between 700,[178] 740 [179] and 800 passengers[180] on board, broke down in Kent due to the extremely cold weather and heavy snow in the United Kingdom.[178]

The Paris-to-London service eventually left Gare du Nord railway station[181] in Paris two hours late at about 8.15pm[180] UK time[180] after an unattended bag caused a security alert.[181][181] Everything was going according to plan, until they were two minutes away from Ashford at 10.15 pm,[178][180] when the train suddenly stopped, the lights flicked briefly and all power failed, leaving the victims in complete darkness[180] at around 10.45 pm.[180] Passengers reported that the lighting was flickering on and off in a "very spooky manner" throughout the journey, until the Eurostar suddenly stopped,[180] and the lights finally went out completely.[179] It then became stiflingly hot inside the train[179][181] as the ventilation system shut down due to the power outage on board the stricken Eurostar train. The chaos grew when most of the toilets stopped working and the staff struggled to find emergency lighting switches.[181] Eventually the train manager walked through all the train carriages, using his emergency torch, announcing that another train and a bus were being sent to rescue them.[180] Passengers carrying luggage then had to clamber down ladders onto the tracks and then back up onto the rescue train that arrived alongside the failed one.[181][181] The rescue train arrived at St Pancras just after 2.30am on the 22nd, more than four-and-a-half hours later than the scheduled arrival time[178] and the bus also took a few to Ashford, where they took local trains to London. Eurostar technical spokesman, Mr. Bram Smets, said it has stopped in what he described as a "major technical problem".[178] Eurostar has launched a probe into the breakdown which left passengers stranded for 4 hours.[178]

Between 6 a.m. and 11 a.m. local time (and UTC), 108 mm (4¼ inches) of rain was recorded at Funchal weather station and 165 mm (6½ inches) of rain at the weather station on Pico do Areeiro.[182] The average rainfall in Funchal for the whole of February is 88.0 mm (3½ inches).[183] Damage was confined to the southern half of the island.[150]


About 42 people were reported dead[184][184][185][186][187] and about 68[186] to 100 [187] injured as rain-induced floods and mudslides hit the Portuguese island of Madeira on the 20th,[186][187] local authorities said. The floodwaters tore down buildings, overturned cars and knocked down trees.[188] The local civil protection service declared that it was "overwhelmed" by emergency calls, according to a duty police officer in an interview with a journalist from the Reuters news agency.[186] According to Portuguese media, the storms were the deadliest on the east Atlantic island since prior to October 1993,[186] when 8 people died and 19 were injured.[186]

The Portuguese military sent specialist rescue teams to the island of Madeira on the 21st, when it was estimated that least 38 people were known to have died[189] in the most extreme rainstorms in 17 years[187] as tonnes of mud and stones brought down the slopes of the island, flooding the streets of the regional capital, Funchal, and other towns.[189] All utilities were knocked out across large swathes of the island.[189] Ribeira Brava was also badly flooded on the 21st.[188] Portuguese Prime Minister Jose Socrates, who was in Madeira, ordered an immediate rescue and aid mission for the island.[189] Portuguese President Cavaco Silva expressed his condolences in a televised statement.[188]

A Portuguese Navy supply ship, with a helicopter, food and medical equipment was sent to the islands that lie about 900 km/560miles from the Portuguese mainland.[189] The Island is very popular with foreign tourists.[189] Officials from the Portuguese Department of Emergencies said that emergency teams, 56 military rescuers, search dogs and 36 firefighters were being sent to the island straight away.[189]

The Island's authorities and the local civil protection board told CNN that one British tourist was missing.[190][191] 10 British music students from a religious school in the Channel Islands were found alive in Funchal[192] along with an Irish tourist as the city is thrown in to meteorological chaos. Local authorities informed the AFP news agency that 70 people were hospitalized.[193]

On the 22nd, 102[194] to 120[195] were confirmed injured and 42 were confirmed dead in Madeira.[194] 2 British tourists were among the dead.[195]

February 23–28

Heavy snow fell in Oxfordshire, the English Midlands and Merseyside on the 23rd and heavy snow fell in the Scottish Highlands on the 24th.


On February 24 a meteorological state of emergency was declared in 21 Mongolia's provinces due to the exceptionally cold conditions. It is purported to be the coldest snap for 50 years and that a person has already died of hypothermia.[196]

Main article: Third North American blizzard of 2010

A major winter storm started plowing its way through upstate New York, southern Vermont and Berkshire County, Massachusetts on the 23rd. Colonie, New York saw a total of 17 inches of snow. Hancock, Massachusetts had seen 9.5 inches, with the forecast total at 10-15 inches, and Stamford, Vermont had seen 9 inches.

Salem County, New Jersey was hit by heavy snow fall on the 24th,[197] and 4 to 12 inches of snow were predicted to fall the next day by weather forecasters.[197] Just under 1,000,000 were left without electricity in New England, Pennsylvania and New York.[198]

On February 23, snow fell in Southeast Texas. Snow accumulated in counties north of Houston such as Conroe, Texas, which received 2 inches of snow. Huntsville, Texas had seen about 2 to 3 inches as well as College Station. Only a trace of snowfall fell in Houston, Texas.

A winter storm warning was issued for counties north of Houston, while Houston had a winter weather advisory.

The extreme winter storm spun around the Northeast by the 25th. Oneonta, New York had seen 44.5 in (113 cm) of snow from this storm. New York City had seen 20.9 in (53 cm), and Philadelphia had seen 11.5 in (29 cm) of snow. Washington, D.C. and Baltimore had remained under light rain. Boston has seen 4.5 in (11 cm) of rain from this storm, and 9.2 in (23 cm) was reported in Belfast, Maine. Major flooding prevailed along coastal New England. The Shawsheen River at Wilmington, Massachusetts was at 8 feet above its banks, and the Merrimack River at Amesbury, Massachusetts was at 20 feet above banks. On Friday morning and night, most of Massachusetts, New Hampshire and Maine were without power. Sustained winds of up to 65 mph pounded the Cape Ann area of eastern Massachusetts. Wind gusts of up to 95 mph were reported in Gloucester, Massachusetts and Rockport, Massachusetts. Millions of trees were felled in the wind from Providence to Bangor. Boston received 52 mph sustained winds and 74 mph gusts. Between February 25 and 26 flood warnings covered most of Rhode island, the Pawtuxet River valley, Boston and Norfolk County in eastern Massachusetts.[199] Orange County, New York saw 2 to 3 feet of snow in Montgomery and Bullville.

Widespread snowfall across Scotland brought extreme distruption. 61 cm of snow was recorded in Aviemore as hundreds of people were stranded in cars in Dunblane. Schools and transport services were distrupted. Two people died in Glencoe in an avalanche. Temperatures reached −19.2 °C in Braemar. Some people in Perthshire were stranded in their cars for 17 hours. 45,000 homes in Scotland were left without power. 30 schools were closed on the 25th.

On February 26, heavy snow hit New York and more was forecast for the next day.[200]

Main article: Haitian floods of 2010

On February 27 unusually heavy monsoon rains hit Haiti. 11 people died the town in Les Cayes, 3 died in the village of Torbeck, 5 died in the village of Les Cayes's Gelee as rain induced mudslides and flood waters hit them.[201]

In January 2010, heavy rain caused flooding which buried or washed away roads and railways leading to the ancient city of Machu Picchu, trapping over 2,000 tourists in addition to 2,000 locals. Machu Picchu was temporarily closed,[202] but it reopened on 28 February 2010.[203] Peru's rail crew has been hard at work since then, and Machu Picchu reopened to tourists on 1 April 2010.

February 28-March 2

Xynthia

Main article: Xynthia (storm)


51 were killed, 59 injured[204] and 12 are missing in France, 6 killed in Germany, 3 killed and 2 severely injured in Spain, 1 killed in Portugal, 1 in Belgium, 1 in the Netherlands and 1 in England[204][205] as heavy rainstorms hit the Bay of Biscay and central France on the 27th. Winds of up to 140 km/h (87 mph) caused chaos as the storm moved from Portugal up through the Bay of Biscay, while a maximum gust of 228 km/h (142 mph) in Spain and 241 km/h (150 mph) in France were recorded. Both Belgium and Denmark were hit by heavy rainstorms overnight as the windstorm moved further northeast.[204] The storm system moved across the Massif Central into the Brittany peninsula, and areas of France bordering Belgium and Germany are on alert for heavy rain and high winds. An Italian was also injured when a hurricane-force wind capsized his yacht off the coast of Portugal. The French President Nicolas Sarkozy expressed his condolences to relatives of victims, and said that he would visit the stricken area on Monday.[204] The French Prime Minister François Fillon said France would formally declare the storm a natural disaster, freeing up funds to help communities rebuild themselves.[204] Rail services were severely affected in northern Spain and a number of trains in western France were delayed because of flooded tracks in southern and western France.[204] British Airways canceled several flights and Air France said 100 of its flights had been cancelled from Charles de Gaulle airport in Paris. Wind speeds hit 175 km/h at the top of the Eiffel Tower, French radio reported on the 28th.[204] The French meteorological service said that shortly after 1700 local time (1600 GMT) the storm passed into Germany, Belgium and the Netherlands, and there also were reports of high winds in the Swiss Alps on March 1. Spain's Canary Islands, particularly La Palma, Gran Canaria and Tenerife, were also hit by the storm, although there was no great damage.[204] The French Departments of Vendée and Charente-Maritime were in ruins and over 1 million homes lost electricity supplies.[204] Television, radio and mobile phone service were also disrupted in some places.

On February 28 the French part storms killed 7 people drowned in various villages in the Vendée region, while 3 old folk people and a kid were found dead in Charente Maritime near La Rochelle. A bloke was killed by a falling tree branch in the south-western town of Luchon, where winds reached 90 mph. At least 5 other people were reported missing and dozens others injured and a kid died in Northern Portugal [206] 5 people were missing and 1 was injured in Aytre. The French Interior Minister Brice Hortefeux declared the storm as a natural catastrophe.[207][207][208] The Météo France weather agency predicted the storm was by then heading towards Denmark.[206]

March

March 1–5

It was confirmed on March 1 that 45-52 (reports vary) French people had died and the government had launched an equine in to why the incident had been so disastrously miss handled.[209] especially around La Rochelle and L'Aiguillon-sur-Mer.[210] Nicolas Sarkozy visited the coastal town of Aiguillon-sur-Mer, the hardest hit area of France where a total 25 had died in the storm.[211]

The 2010 Queensland floods saw inundation of the towns of Charleville, Roma, St George and Theodore among others.[212] The floods were caused by rainfall generated by a monsoon trough described by a Bureau of Meteorology forecaster as "almost like a tropical cyclone over land".[213] Over the period 1–3 March, rainfall totals of between 100–300 mm (4 to 12 inches) were observed in the area.[213][214] This water ran into already saturated rivers and creeks in the area.[213] Losses from cotton crops destroyed at Theodore and the area around St George and Dirranbandi are expected to be significant.[215]

The floods, described by the Queensland Minister for Primary Industries Tim Mulherin as the "worst flood in 120 years" are however expected to provide a billion dollar boost to the local economy, following the "worst drought since Federation"[216] The floods have seen a large increase in the Australian plague locust population and the Australian Plague Locust Commission is concerned the locusts will head south and destroy what is expected to be a bumper winter grain crop.[217] On 21 March,

Main article: 2010 Uganda landslide

The 2010 Uganda landslide occurred in the district of Bududa in eastern Uganda on 1 March 2010.[218][219] The landslide was triggered by heavy rain between 12 pm and 7 pm that day.[220] At least 100 people were believed to have been killed.[218]

The Ugandan Red Cross stated that rescuers had recovered 50 bodies, whilst a Ugandan government minister has put the death toll at over 100.[221][222] The chairman of the eastern Bududa district suggested that the death toll could be as high as 300.[223] The landslide struck villages on the slopes of Mount Elgon, including Nameti, Kubewo, and Nankobe.[223] Officials and aid workers have warned that there may be further landslides, as heavy rain continues to fall in the region.[224]

AirTran Airways cancelled several flights out of Atlanta Airport due to bad weather[225] on March 1 and 2.[225]

On March 1, the Environment Agency issued 169 flood warnings in over East Anglia, Yorkshire, Wrexham, Tyne and Wear, Cambridgeshire, Bedfordshire, Oxfordshire, Kent and West Sussex.[226] The Thames Flood Barrier closed twice in less than 24 hours to protect London from a combined high tide and tidal surge in the Thames estuary, where it had been predicted that the water would rise by another 50 cm.[226] Andy Batchelor, Tidal Area Flood Risk Manager, said that the Thames Barrier would close yet again should we need to protect the 1.25 million people living and working in London's floodplain.[226]

Heavy snow storms hit the Virginians and parts of Maryland on March 2.[227]

The Ewaso Nyiro River river in Kenya burst its banks and flooded a safari park's guest house on the 3rd,[228] killing nine people.[229]

20 people died on the 4th as an avalanche hit 2 villages in the mountains of Afghanistan's Wakhan Mountains.

Several dozen ships, some with nearly one thousand passengers were stranded in rapidly forming sea ice due to cold weather and strong winds in the Gulf of Bothnia, between Sweden and Finland and near the Baltic Sea. Some of the ships were freed by icebreakers on March 5.[230]

On March 5, 20,000 were made homeless as flood induced landslides hit Bududa, Uganda.[231]

March 6–19

Main article: 2010 Victorian storms


The 2010 Victorian storms were a series of storms that passed through much of the Australian state of Victoria on 6 March and 7 March 2010. One of the most severe storms passed directly over Greater Melbourne, bringing lightning, flash flooding, very large hail and strong winds to the state's capital.[232][233] It was described as a "mini-cyclone".[234]

On March 8, Catalonia saw its heaviest snowfall in 25 years; up to 50 centimetres fell in Barcelona. Over 200,000 residents of North-Eastern Spain were left without power, and up to 500 passengers were evacuated from a train travelling to Southern France, which also was experiencing blizzard conditions, with many schools closing. Nîmes and Perpignan were the worst-hit.[235]

A state of emergency was declared in Northern Spain, on the 10th of March, due to the unseasonal blizzards. Forty roads in France were closed with snow reportedly 3 ft deep in some areas. Italy also experienced the effects of the Arctic blast; there was traffic chaos in Siena, Assisi and Pisa, with snowstorms stretching as far south as Rome. On the sunshine island of Majorca, havoc ensued with 6 major roads closing, due to unseasonal snowfall.

On March 10 Transport and power supplies were disrupted by blizzards around Zagreb, hurricanes around Rijeka and a mixture of both in Dalmatia. Both Istria, the northern Adriatic coast and Lika, had electricity supply problems, according to Croatian Power Company (HEP).[236]

Heavy rain and rapid snow-melt contributed to the failure of the Kyzyl-Agash dam in Kazakhstan on March 11, killing more than 40 people.[237]

On March 12, about 4,000 people were made homeless by floods in the Kazakh towns of Almaty, Kyzyl-Agash, and Zhylbulak.[238][239][240][241] A total of 30 people had been confirmed dead as the flood waters from, the dam that had burst on the 12th reached 2 meters deep on March 13.[242]

The American military officials closed Misawa Air Base on 10 March as a blizzard swept across northern Japan, dumping a record-setting 20 inches of snow on the base by mid-afternoon. A cyclone with snowstorms approached Kamchatka coast from the Sea of Okhotsk on the 13th and preceded to move inland by the 15th, after which the storms died out in Eastern and Central Kamchatka with no casualties. The Ust-Bolsheretsk, Petropavlovsk-Kamchatsky and Yelizovo districts of Kamchatka were badly hit by the high wind and snowfall.[243]

The fourth major winter storm to strike the East coast of the United States caused widespread flooding, severe beach erosion, and tree and structural damage from Virginia to Maine on the 13th. The storm killed at least nine people, and left over 1 million without electricity.[244] After the storm, severe to record flooding occurred at the Pawtuxet River in Rhode Island and along the upper tributaries of the Mississippi River.

BBC Weather reports that areas of Portugal and Spain have witnessed the heaviest recorded levels of precipitation since the Second World War on the 16th.

Australia faced the worst flooding in 60 years as 134 people in the small rural town of Wanaaring, just south of the Queensland/New South Wales boarder, remains cut off on the 18th. The Paroo River peaked at 4.8 meters and broke its banks on the 17th.[245]

A major sandstorm Kano in northern Nigeria on the morning of March 19 . The whole federal state was filled with sandstorms. All flights into and out of the federal state were cancelled amid softy fears.[246] Similar events occurred over the border in the drought hit Niger.[247] The Harmattan wind caused others in Mauritania. Rain fall had paradoxically gone down in the African Sahel region as it went up in most other parts of the World.

20 people died on the 4th as an avalanche hit 2 villages in the mountains of Afghanistan's Wakhan Mountains.

March 21–24

Cyclone Ului made landfall in southeastern Queensland on the 21st, producing heavy rains and flooding.

After nearly a month of flooding in the Croatian Kosinj Valley has been the centre of about 11 million Kuna/ (1,514,000 Euros) worth of damages in the region of Lika, Croat officials said on the 22 of March.[248][249]

Heavy sandstorms hit Beijing between March 20 and 22.[250] On March 23, a major storm sweeps of the lens west of the Bohai Sea and the Yellow Sea, and finally falls on the North Korea and South Korea. The Xinjiang, Shanxi, Shaanxi and Hebei regions were already faceing drought and sandstorms earlyer this month.[251]

A major sandstorms hit both Mauritania, Senegal, the Gambia, Guinea Bissau, Guinea and inland Sierra Leone. Another gets southern Algeria, inland Mauritania, Mali and northern Côte d'Ivoire.[251]

A major hail storm hit Perth, Western Australia, more than 158,000 houses were blacked out at the height of the storm and estimates on the insurance damage are over a $1 billion.

March 28–31

The UK was expecting one last shot at winter a huge snow storm is expected to drive up from the South West with rain turning to snow Midlands northwards. The UK Met Office has issued severe weather warnings for the following regions: Northern Ireland, North West England, Wales, Yorkshire & Humber, West Midlands, S.W. Scotland, Lothian and Borders, East Midlands and North East England. Temperatures are expected to go sub zero once again. Snow is forecast from Cardiff, Wales northwards. The warnings come a day after top British meteorologists from outside the UK Met Office predicted the UK's hottest summer on record for 2010 on the 28th.

Snow fell in Scotland on 30 March, stranding drivers on a motorway leaving them to dig out their cars, the MetOffice released weather alerts for only Scotland and Northern Ireland as the south wasn't as cold as forecasted however heavy snow is falling on higher ground in England and Wales, however temperatures in the South West of the UK fell dramatically around lunch time of the 30th of march and snow is falling in some areas in South Wales and South West England.

The Met Office updated its warnings on March 30, the following areas of the UK are in severe weather warnings; Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland. The Met Office has also issued extreme weather warnings of Severe Blizzards, Severe Drifting Snow & Very Heavy Snowfall in Western Northern Ireland and North East Scotland where 40–50 cm of snow is now forecasted to fall with drifts over 5 feet tall. Heavy thuner storms hit parts of Hampshire [252] and temperatures begin to rise in Southern England and Greater London.

On March 31, 48,000 Northern Irish, 24,000 Scottish and 150 Irish homes are without power as heavy snow falls in both Northern Ireland, parts of Staffordshire, and Scotland's Southern Uplands.[253] About 300 people are freed by rescue services when 120 vehicles ventured out during a blizzard in County Londonderry's Glenshane Pass.[253] Sadly, 17 year old Natasha Paton, from Cleghorn in southern Lanarkshire dies as the coach she was in skids and crashes in the snow on the A73 road, outside Wiston, also in southern Lanarkshire.[253] She was om a trip to visit Alton Towers, Staffordshire on a trip from Biggar in Lanarkshire, that was organised by Lanark Grammar School [253] The UK Met Office has issued severe weather warnings for the next day in the following regions:Northern Ireland, Northern England, Wales and Scotland.[253]

The storm follows the coldest winter in decades to hit the UK and this is the second most severe storm to hit the UK this year, the most severe was the January 6 snowfall in Southern England and South Wales, despite lower snow depth of 40 cm the south is less prepared and has a higher population density than Northern Ireland and Scotland so caused more chaos and damage to the UK economy. First Great Western closed both Islip railway station and Bicester Town railway station for part of the day due to heavy snow fall on exposed stretches of track. Snow also causes travel disruption for buses and cars in South Glamorgan.

Both the Rhone and the Danube begin to swell at there upper sections due to heavy rain and snow related melt water on the 31st.

April

April 1–6

On March 31, the UK Met Office issued severe weather warnings for April 1 in the following regions: Northern Ireland, Northern England, Wales and Scotland.[253] Heavy rain fell in Banbury and moderate snow fell in Scotland on the 2nd.

April 1 and 2 had temperatures plummet to minus 50 degrees in Mongolia's Tuul valley, The peasant villager Urna said she bought "400 bundles of grass and tons of feed so that we would be ready" for any further bad weather. According to the Mongolian Red Cross have reported that about 4,500,000 head of livestock perished as a result of the bad weather this year.[254][255] Tume, who lives in Ulan Bator said that he had noticed that there were several particle harsh winters in a row to. He blamed climate change, but experts said that overgrazing by cattle had also child of most of the country's grassland.[255]

The April 2010 Rio de Janeiro floods and mudslides are an extreme weather event that has affected the State of Rio de Janeiro in Brazil in the first days of April 2010. At least 212 people have died,[256][257][258] 161 people have been injured (including several rescuers),[259] while at least 15,000 people have been made homeless.[260] Meteolagists exspessed concern over the intensity of the storms and there aftermath. The worst part was on the 5th and 6th.

April 17

Two buildings suddenly fell into the River Buriganga in Nababerchar city's Kamrangirchar district during a heavy storm on April 17, 2010. Bangladeshi police claimed the foundations were weakened by illegal lifting of sand by local sand traders.[261][262]

Heavy rain also hit the borders of Armenia and Azerbijan in the evening.

April 27–28

A major snowstorm hit New England after the western side of a low pressure system sank southward from eastern Ontario on April 27, merging with part of a second low. Vermont was hit with the most snow, which totalled as much as 60 cm (2.0 ft). Close to 30,000 customers were left without power.[263][264][265]

April 28–30

Snow fell east of the Rocky Mountains in southern Alberta as the cold sector of a storm dumped over 25 cm (9.8 in) of snow in the Calgary area. Highway 2 was closed, ice coated some roads, and another 10 cm (3.9 in) was expected to fall on Friday along with strong winds.[266][267]

Gallery

See also

References

Weather by year
Preceded by
2009
Global storm activity
2010
Succeeded by
May-Aug' 2010
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