Great Lakes Ice Cover Among Worst in 40 Years

MarineLink.com
Friday, March 07, 2014

By Kim Palmer, Reuters

The Great Lakes saw some of their worst ice cover in nearly four decades because of a frigid winter with months of below-freezing temperatures in large sections of the northern United States, the National Ocean and Atmospheric Administration said.

As of Thursday, 92.2 percent of the five lakes were under ice, breaking a record set in 1973 but still short of the 94.7 percent set in 1979, the federal agency said.

The area under ice this winter covered about 86,000 square miles, which is a little bit larger than the state of Minnesota.

With a spring thaw approaching and temperatures warming, the 1979 record appears poised to stand for at least another year.

"We had lots of ice on the lakes early this year and then with the polar vortex at the end of December, we saw the ice continue to grow," said George Leshkevich, a physical scientist with NOAA's Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory.

Four of the Great Lakes are more than 90 percent under ice, according to Leshkevich, something that has not happened since 1994. The 40-year average ice coverage for all the lakes is about 51 percent, the NOAA said.

The lone hold-out, Lake Ontario, has only 59 percent ice coverage because of its depth and smaller surface. The relatively shallower Lake Erie was 96 percent iced-over, it said.

With the increased ice coverage, the Coast Guard spent more time than usual rescuing snowmobilers who had ventured out onto the frozen surfaces, Coast Guard Petty officer Levi Read said on Friday.

Ice-breaking crews have been working almost non-stop helping to keep commercial waterways clear, with transport time increasing greatly because of the limited passage, Read said.

"We had a truck fall through the ice this year, but no one was in the truck at the time," Read said.

(Writing by Jon Herskovitz; editing by Gunna Dickson)

Maritime Today


The Maritime Industry's original and most viewed E-News Service

Maritime Reporter July 2016 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Environmental

Singapore, Malaysia Conduct Joint Chemical Spill Drill

The Maritime and Port Authority of Singapore (MPA) and the Marine Department of Malaysia (MDM) conducted a joint chemical spill exercise at sea along the East

Insights: Kunkel Weighs in on Propulsion Technology

LNG? Methanol as fuel? Hybrid systems? Tier 4? Reducing noise? Cutting emissions without crushing fuel economy? Marine News readers have questions and Bob Kunkel has answers.

Safety and Preparation on the Brownwater Radar

Weather Channel Forecasters are predicting a “near-average” hurricane season for 2016, but warn that an average season does not mean businesses and residents shouldn’t prepare for the worst.

News

MED AMERICAS will Replace MGE Service

CMA CGM is revamping it MGE service becoming the MED AMERICAS, stand-alone CMA CGM service with dedicated fleet of 11 vessels of 2,500 TEU, in a continuous effort to improve service coverage,

Horizon Delivers Towboat Marty Cullinan for FMT

In June 2016 Horizon Shipbuilding, Inc. of Bayou La Batre, Ala. delivered the M/V Marty Cullinan, a 120’ towboat with a retractable pilot house, to its home port of New Orleans, La.

First US LNG Shipment Goes to China

The first liquefied natural gas vessel from the lower 48 U.S. states is on its way to China, according to a Reuters interactive map on Friday, the latest sign that

Coast Guard

Safety and Preparation on the Brownwater Radar

Weather Channel Forecasters are predicting a “near-average” hurricane season for 2016, but warn that an average season does not mean businesses and residents shouldn’t prepare for the worst.

Alaska Juris Sinks, 46 People Rescued

The Fishing Company of Alaska, based in Renton, owns the  238-foot  Alaska Juris that started sinking in the Bering Sea shortly before noon on Tuesday, says a report in Seattle Times.

Sunken Barge Impedes Waterway Traffic Near Galveston

A barge sank east of the Galveston Causeway railroad bridge Tuesday, causing the U.S. Coast Guard to issue a safety zone and temporarily restrict traffic on the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway.

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Offshore Oil Pipelines Port Authority Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Shipbuilding / Vessel Construction Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | contributors | top maritime news | about us | copyright | maritime magazines
maritime security news | shipbuilding news | maritime industry | shipping news | maritime reporting | workboats news | ship design | maritime business

Time taken: 0.0945 sec (11 req/sec)