Wednesday, January 8, 2014

It's Freezing...Even in South Georgia

Polar Vortex: "Is a persistent, large-scale cyclone located near either of a planet's geographical poles.  On Earth, the polar vortices are located in the middle and upper troposphere and the stratosphere.  They surround the polar highs and lie in the wake of the polar front.  These cold-core low-pressure areas strengthen in the winter and weaken in the summer due to their reliance upon the temperature differential between the equator and the poles.  They usually span less than 1,000 kilometers (620 miles) in which the air is circulating in a counter-clockwise fashion (in the northern hemisphere)."

Much of the United States has been experiencing extremely cold temperatures this past week and it has caused quite an alarming media response.  For a nation founded with covered wagons and pioneering survival tactics, we sure have lost our touch through the years when it comes to withstanding the cold.  This is an argument I have heard several times over the last few weeks but to be fair, these temperatures have also not been seen in decades if ever in history.  In the city of Chicago, a record low temperature of -11 Degrees F had existed until the bone chilling -16 Degrees F hit the metropolis with an added wind chill that took Chicago down to -34 Degrees F.  This Polar Vortex has forced even residents in south Georgia to learn what its like to have frozen pipes in their homes and businesses.  There also have been several instances where fire emergency systems have frozen over or have been broken due to pipes bursting, causing a security hazard for many large functioning agricultural and industrial facilities.  Between the current freeze, and the South Dakota blizzard in 2013, mother nature is sure reminding us how powerful frozen moisture can be.