Alaska faces one of its worst storms ever, forecasters say
The National Weather Service forecast map for Alaska on Tuesday.
November 8th, 2011
05:57 AM ET

Alaska faces one of its worst storms ever, forecasters say

Alaska is facing a life threatening winter storm with near hurricane force winds, more than a foot of snow and severe coastal flooding, the National Weather Service says.

"This is an extremely dangerous and life-threatening storm which will be one of the worst on record over the Bering Sea and the west coast," NWS forecasters said in a bulletin Monday afternoon.

The storm was about 600 miles southwest of Shemya in the far western Aleutian Islands on Monday afternoon and was expected to move over the Bering Sea toward Alaska's west coast on Tuesday.

Winds near hurricane force of 74 mph were expected to generate seas as high as 25 feet in the northern Bering Sea, forecasters said. The winds were expected to raise sea levels as much as 9 feet in the Norton Sound. Those levels combined with the high waves were expected to cause significant coastal erosion and major flooding. The winds may also push sea ice on shore, adding to the dangers, NWS forecasters said.

Alaska's west coast could also see as much as 14 inches of snow in blizzard conditions, forecasters said. The storm was expected to last into Wednesday.

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Filed under: Alaska • Flooding • Weather • Winter weather
soundoff (465 Responses)
  1. Mark Carlton

    It's enough to make a person wish that the global warming "scientists" had been telling the truth.

    November 8, 2011 at 11:59 am | Report abuse |
    • palintwit

      Global warming means an increase of moisture in the atmosphere. Which is what this is. The "warming" need only be 1 or 2 degrees.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
    • driranek

      Climate change is expected to produce more weather extremes, which is exactly what everywhere from Texas to the Mississippi valley to Thialand have been experiencing all year. Looks like all those scientists are right.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:10 pm | Report abuse |
    • palintwit

      driranek... Palin and her baggers and birthers don't believe in science. If she had been elected, she would have promptly launched this country forward to the 12th century.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:16 pm | Report abuse |
    • Not an idiot

      Wow... someone doesn;t understand science...

      November 8, 2011 at 12:17 pm | Report abuse |
    • Brad

      Climate change is a fancy term for what already exists throughout the world's history. What GW alarmists are arguing is the speeding up of a process, which is ironic given we're on the precipe of moving into a mini-ice age where upon the additional moisture/temperature boost could well keep planetary conditions relatively level over a 1,000 year timeframe. But who cares about the actual history.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:18 pm | Report abuse |
    • newsreel

      You just help prove that global warming deniers are just not that bright nor well educated. Thanks, and wake up, educate yourself and join the smart/responsible side.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • palintwit

      Brad... care to speculate why the Greenland ice sheet is disappearing so fast?

      November 8, 2011 at 12:24 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jarno

      Mark – learn just the very basics of climate change, and what it means, please, before making a fool of yourself with a comment like that.

      First, global warming means that the AVERAGE temperature of the Earth is increasing – all the statistics confirm that this has been happening. Even a recent Kohch brother funded study of the temperature monitoring statistics, run by climate change skeptics, concluded that – unlike they expected – the statistics did indeed show an undeniable warming trend.

      This doesn't mean that somehow winters would end, or that every place on Earth would be warming by the same amount, or that very cold spells wouldnt' exist anymore – it just means that when you take a year's temperatures, average them over, you see that they are warmer than a decade ago, and the averaged year's temperatures a decade ago are warmer than those same values were 50 years ago.

      The effects of the warming trend are actually an increase in the severity of all whether events – because as the atmosphere warms up, it has more energy – more energy, more energetic weather events. This means an increase of severe winter storms, and severe summer droughts, or summer flooding, and storms.

      In other words, this sort of thing as Alaska is about to experience, is just what the climate models predict. Learn the basics, and go beyond your current naive and innaccurate view of what climate change and clobal warming mean.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
    • Liberty Jane

      @Twit. Those Greenland numbers have been greatly exaggerated.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:35 pm | Report abuse |
  2. dowdotica

    ...hm...uh...can it just dump all the snow on sara?.....okay that was un called for...lolol

    November 8, 2011 at 12:00 pm | Report abuse |
    • Dee G

      Yeah, but still funny!

      November 8, 2011 at 12:11 pm | Report abuse |
  3. Patriot

    @Bryan Abbot – Not suggesting that an Alaskan doesn't know bad weather. My sister and her husband lived there. Before you call me a fool, if you let yourself be caught in those type of seas, then who is the bigger one? I am pointing out that 1) don't put yourself in the situation in the first place, 2) don't mouth off about how tough you all are, and 3) and then given 2), act like you don't need help from us here in the lower 48. Your self images are on the one hand, tough and independent, and then on the other, taking State and Federal money in great gobs.

    If you all are truly tough and independent as your ex Gov states to the rest of us, then we can close down the Coasties, NOAA, USGS, and all those other big bad Federal agencies that you so seem to loath.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:02 pm | Report abuse |
    • MDWhite

      It's "U.S. Coast Guard," or "Coastguardsmen," dork. Not "Coasties."

      November 8, 2011 at 12:14 pm | Report abuse |
    • carl

      That's ok to call us coastie's I never had a problem with it.. And this is not that bad I was a coastie up there for 3 years ball's to the walls SAR seen some good storms in the Bering Sea waves 40ft high and that's no joke!! All Mariners be safe out there...

      November 8, 2011 at 12:46 pm | Report abuse |
  4. glyder

    how will this storm compare to cnn and it's sheep going through palins e-mails.dissapointment?

    November 8, 2011 at 12:04 pm | Report abuse |
  5. Ardiva

    What does all this stuff about Palin have to do with this terrible storm in Alaska?? I pray that no one will be hurt!

    November 8, 2011 at 12:12 pm | Report abuse |
    • Jim Jensen

      Some people are so filled with hatred they will take a sniper shot at anybody they disagree with, at any opportunity. These same people know nothing about Sarah Palin but are simply echoing what they read or hear in the liberal biased news. These people don't have the ability to think or reason on their own.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:42 pm | Report abuse |
  6. Dan

    shut up with the palin comments. that is played and nobody cares.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:13 pm | Report abuse |
  7. Miss Demeanor

    cue the "it's cuz of global warming and stuff"... "like, ummm, mother earth is angry " crowd...

    November 8, 2011 at 12:22 pm | Report abuse |
    • bachmanntwit

      How about "god is angry with liberal Alaskans" ?

      – Michele Bachmann –

      November 8, 2011 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
  8. Alex

    I've live in Alaska and have worked on ships in the Bering Sea, and the Gulf of Alaska. This is NOT a bad storm, yes it is a storm but I myself have sailed on much worse seas in the Bering. Try 35 foot swells with 40 foot waves and 80 to 90 knot winds. I am very disappointed in this report.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:25 pm | Report abuse |
  9. djdjdj

    I live in Kotzebue, right in the middle of the storm's path. Everyone's gearing down for it. Expecting everything to be closed tomorrow. But don't call it a snowday, up here it's more like a "don't go outside or you'll die and they won't find your body until summer" day. Can't imagine it being worse than the storms last winter or the ones I've heard about. One thing this article doesn't consider is the sea ice, it's not that thick yet, but with rising sea levels, it's going to wreck havoc on the less prepared coastal villages like Kivalina. It'll be interesting to see what comes of this storm for sure.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:28 pm | Report abuse |
  10. Not My Government

    Oh no! Snow and wind coming ashore from the Bering Sea to Alaska. Just as winter approaches too. Who would have thought?

    November 8, 2011 at 12:29 pm | Report abuse |
  11. James K.

    Bet they're glad Palin is no longer Gov.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:32 pm | Report abuse |
  12. Cjw

    What we are experiencing this year is just the very beginning of some serious climate changes. Rapid Desertification in Africa and Central China, and the worst flooding in South Korea's and Southern China's history My hope is that we find/start using alternative energy before the changes start wiping out our planets climates, oceans and plants and animals. I hope that is some way we can reverse the damage.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:33 pm | Report abuse |
    • time for your shots

      Go get yourself a cute little hemp grocery bag and drive your new Subaru plastered with "Love Your Mother' and "Coexist" stickers to Trader Joes. Then you can go online and berate anybody else not exactly like you. I see your type everyday here in Seattle. Like little herds of head-bobbing lemmings in fleets of Subaru wagons with freshly removed Obama stickers.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:40 pm | Report abuse |
    • mewp12

      We have had climate change since we have had climate. what most of you need to do is take a class in geology and learn a little about history.

      November 8, 2011 at 12:43 pm | Report abuse |
  13. time for your shots

    74mph wind and 14" snow. LOL. Amateurs.

    What kind of nonsense story is this?

    November 8, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  14. Steve

    It's not "global warming" or "climate change" it's a scientific phenomenon know as "La Nina". that is a cooling of the Pacific ocean. It is temporary and part of a natural cycle that has existed for centuries, before any industrial revolutions. El nino and La Nina, combined with sun spots, have much more to do with our weather and its cycles than anything that man could do. When you think about it, it is pretty arrogant to think we could actually change the weather.

    November 8, 2011 at 12:34 pm | Report abuse |
  15. crown

    Isn't Alaska "life-threatening" by default.
    40mph winds, nasty snowstorms and hungry bears are a norm – no?
    So I figure with the little bit of extra wind, maybe the bears will not be venturing out?

    All joking aside – stay safe Alaska !!!

    November 8, 2011 at 12:37 pm | Report abuse |
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