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

Environmental

Port Everglades, EPA to Study Air Emissions

Port Everglades has signed a partnership agreement with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) to study air emissions.   The EPA's Office of Transportation

Lloyd's Register Extends Drilling Rig Integrity Support

Exploration begins by BHP Billiton using the Deepwater Invictus rig and supported by Lloyd’s Register’s rig integrity team. Lloyd’s Register (LR) announced it

Groningen Seaports First in Line for Damen InvaSave

The first production version of Damen’s InvaSave ballast water treatment system – intended for use at Groningen Seaports – will be on display at the upcoming ‘DelfSail’

News

Senate Confirms Three to Serve on Federal Maritime Commission

The U.S. Senate has confirmed the nominations of three individuals to serve as Federal Maritime Commissioners: Rebecca F. Dye, Michael A. Khouri and Daniel B. Maffei.

Norsafe Secures Contract with VARD Group

Norsafe informs it has signed a new contract with VARD Group, and will supply lifeboats complete with davit systems to a series of 15 new vessels.    Topaz Energy

Enclosed Space Safety Rule Enters into Force

A new regulation aimed at protecting seafarers who need to enter enclosed spaces, by requiring ships to carry portable atmosphere testing equipment on board, enters into force on July 1, 2016.

Coast Guard

Tanker Allision on the Piscataqua River

The U.S. Coast Guard says it is continuing to monitor the condition of the chemical tanker Chem Venus, after it allided with three unoccupied, moored sailboats

Beijing Slams South China Sea Court Proceedings

Permanent Court of Arbitration ruling set for July 12. An international court said it would deliver a hotly anticipated ruling in the Philippines' case against

BSM Acquires USCG Qualship 21 Program Approval

Bernhard Schulte Shipmanagement is proud to announce that it has received US Coast Guard (USCG) Qualship 21 Program approval for the BSM India-managed, Algoma-owned

 
 
Maritime Contracts Maritime Security Maritime Standards Pod Propulsion Port Authority Salvage Ship Electronics Ship Repair Sonar 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: 0.0936 sec (11 req/sec)