Rain, snow, wind batter West while record warmth lingers in East
Heavy snow, downpours, twisters and record-breaking warmth — the county has seen it all this weekend.
Back-to-back storm systems Sunday will keep a week-long deluge of rain going strong on the West Coast and continue to blanket the Northwest and Rockies with snow, according to the National Weather Service.
The San Francisco Bay Area and the San Joaquin Valley in California will get up to half an inch of rain and central part of the state could see wind gusts up to 55 mph, said National Weather Service meteorologist Nathan Owen.
A storm in Southern California Friday had already dropped 6 inches of snow at higher elevations and brought rain, hail and thunderstorms elsewhere.
Sunday's snow targeting Oregon, Washington and the Rockies could linger until Monday, according to Weather.com. Eight inches of snow had already fallen in Klamath Falls, Oregon, Saturday night, while the mountains of Idaho and high elevations in Montana, Wyoming, Utah and Colorado have up to 2 feet of snow coming their way through Monday night, Weather.com reported.
Another storm system that brought at least one tornado to Texas Saturday, leaving 50 homes damaged, was winding down, but the Southwest was still at a small risk of seeing some tornado activity, according to the Weather Channel's Dr. Greg Forbes. The destructive tornado registered as an EF-2, the National Weather Service said Sunday.
Meanwhile, a good part of the country is seeing anything but typical holiday weather. Arctic air that has been locked up in Canada isn't budging, making for record-high temperatures from the South, through the Plains and into the Northeast. Temperatures in those regions soared to 15-30 degrees above average, according to meteorologists.
Preliminary data shows that at least 574 record daily highs were tied or broken across the U.S. during the first 10 days of December, and that number will rise drastically when temperatures from Friday through Sunday are documented, according to Weather.com.
Islip, New York, where the average high for December is 44 degrees saw the mercury hit 68 degrees on Saturday, and record highs were set at New York's LaGuardia Airport, where the thermometer read 66 degrees, as well as JFK Airport and in Bridgeport, Connecticut, which both saw spring-like weather,according to NBC New York.
"It's roasting," said Niall Traynor, who was in New York City on business with two coworkers from Belfast, Ireland. His colleague, Mack Murtagh, said the trio didn't expect the balmy weather.
"We kind of packed for 0 degrees [Celsius] and now all our clothes are too hot ... and without buying something else, we're kind of stuck — so we have to just walk around really hot all day," Murtagh said.
Arshad Shahadat, who sells paintings on the street near Rockefeller Center, said he didn't mind the uncharacteristic weather because he is selling substantially more this Christmas season than any other year. "I like the warm," he said.
Many revelers who participated in New York's Santa Con on Saturday took advantage of the Christmas-in-July like temperatures, donning un-Santa-like shirt sleeves, shorts and tropical-wear.
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