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 Reporter July 2014 Digital Edition
FREE Maritime Reporter Subscription
Latest Maritime News    rss feeds

Environmental

MARAD: Total Fuel Cycle Study for Natural Gas

The Maritime Administration (MARAD) released a study that evaluates total fuel cycle emissions for natural gas versus conventional marine fuels. Results showed

Caribbean Storm Likely to Strengthen, Veers Away from US

A low-pressure system moved over Puerto Rico on Friday and is expected to veer northeast away from the U.S. East Coast but still has an 80 percent chance of forming

DoD Awards US$117-M New Orleans Dredge Contract

The US Department of Defense informs that it has awarded Boh Bros. Construction Co., LLC, New Orleans, Louisiana, a US$116,956,672 firm-fixed-price contract with

News

Mexican Navy Delegation Visits NSSA

The U.S. Navy reported that its Norfolk Ship Support Activity (NSSA) welcomed the Mexican Navy Delegation to Building CEP-200, Naval Station Norfolk, Aug. 21 for

MARAD: Total Fuel Cycle Study for Natural Gas

The Maritime Administration (MARAD) released a study that evaluates total fuel cycle emissions for natural gas versus conventional marine fuels. Results showed

LNG Transport Barge Design Approved by ABS

Conrad Shipyard, L.L.C. engaged Bristol Harbor Group, Inc. (BHGI) to develop a 3,000 cubic meter Liquefied Natural Gas (LNG) transport barge utilizing a Bristol

Coast Guard

USCG Boatcrew Searching for Burglary Suspect

U.S. Coast Guard (USCG) search-and-rescue crews are currently searching for a burglary suspect in the vicinity of the Rickenbacker Causeway near Miami, Fla. Friday morning.

Massive Haitian Refugee Rescues off Bahamas

Coast Guard crews and Royal Bahamian Defence Force (RBDF) rescued more than 400 Haitians illegally migrating in three separate at sea interdictions in the span of 11 days, informs the USĀ Coast Guard.

400 Migrants Rescued by USCG & RBDF

Coast Guard crews and Royal Bahamian Defence Force (RBDF) rescued more than 400 Haitians illegally migrating in three separate at sea interdictions in the span of 11 days.

 
 
Maritime Careers / Shipboard Positions Maritime Security Navigation Offshore Oil Pipelines Pod Propulsion Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Simulators Winch
rss | archive | history | articles | privacy | terms and conditions | 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: 0.0990 sec (10 req/sec)