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Weather of 2021- Some of the biggest weather events across the country

Published: Dec. 30, 2021 at 10:08 PM EST
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HARRISONBURG, Va. (WHSV) - Every year features snow, severe weather, wildfires and more. the United States is a country with a lot of active weather. Here are some of the biggest weather events across the country in 2021.

We start with the deep freeze of Texas. A winter storm in February with snow and ice dropped through the Plains, but the bigger impact was the extreme cold that followed for more than a week.

The power grid failed. Pipes frozen, and then bursting. With the extreme cold in February, this was the coldest February in the United States in 30 years.

From extreme cold to extreme heat- in the Pacific Northwest. A west coast heat wave in late June sent temperatures soaring above 100° across several states. The heat extending into Canada, where the country’s all time hottest temperature was recorded at 121 degrees in British Columbia. Most in that region don’t even have air conditioning. More than 1,400 deaths are attributed to the heat.

That extreme heat also leading to numerous large wildfires. The smoke so thick, for weeks it was carried east by the Jetstream. Hazy skies became common across the East Coast as the fires burned in the west.

One of the largest fires, the Dixie fire in California started in July. Burning nearly one million acres of land, that fire was finally contained three months later.

Another fire in September threated thousands of giant sequoia trees in California. Many were saved.

From fire to water. An active hurricane season from the Gulf to the East Coast. Hurricane Ida, a powerful category 4 storm slammed into the Louisiana coast on August 29th. This, eleven years to the day since Hurricane Katrina

Flash flooding spread inland. In Hurley, Virginia (southwest Virginia), intense and rapid flash flooding with mudslides destroyed dozens of homes and one person died.

Locally, after a spring and summer drought Ida’s rain was much needed. However it did bring flooding to prone areas and some of our local rivers did reach flood stage.

That flooding, spreading to the Northeast. New York city under water with as much as 7-10 inches of rain falling in one night.

Two of the biggest weather stories of the year happening in just the last few weeks. A powerful storm system led to a December tornado outbreak on December 10th.

The death toll, nearly 100. Two long track tornadoes destroying communities from Arkansas, to Kentucky, but several states have been affected.

A few days later on December 15th - it was a day of everything. Ferocious high wind spread from the Rockies to the Great Lakes with gusts over eighty miles an hour.

A dust storm moved from Colorado, to Nebraska and Kansas, and severe weather leading to another tornado outbreak.

Several tornadoes confirmed in Minnesota, the state’s first ever in December. The severe weather leaving a path of destruction for hundreds of miles. The National Weather Service classifying the storm as a derecho.

Tornado outbreaks in December might seem unusual but they are not uncommon.

In December 2021, 188 tornadoes are confirmed bringing the yearly total to just over thirteen hundred tornadoes. Which almost exactly the average number each year.

As the year comes to an end, remember that there are still so many communities trying to pick up the pieces.

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