Travel conditions normal on Friday morning despite cold


Travel conditions on Friday morning were normal despite freezing temperatures across Acadiana.

The Louisiana Department of Transportation and Development made preparations for any possible ice accumulations on bridges and overpasses on Thursday.

Those roads were pre-treated with a brine solution. See that work, below:

No roadways in Acadiana were closed on Friday.

Scott Brazda was LIVE on GMA with a look at road conditions in Lafayette and Iberia Parish.

A look at road conditions on Friday in Acadiana

According to Meteorologist Daniel Phillips, there hasn’t been any significant change over from rain to ice so far Friday morning. He says it doesn’t look like conditions will be right to see any impactful winter weather.

To read his full forecast: Very cold Friday, but no major travel impacts

Louisiana State Police Troopers will be actively patrolling the state to monitor roadway conditions. They shared a few tips for drivers:

  • Avoid unnecessary travel and stay up-to-date on weather conditions
  • Ensure all vehicle occupants are properly restrained
  • Reduce speed and allow extra time to reach your destination
  • Increase your following distance behind other vehicles
  • Do not drive using the cruise control in icy conditions
  • Anticipate stops (such as stop signs and traffic signals) and brake gently while stopping
  • If you encounter a skid, take your foot off the accelerator and steer into the skid until you regain control
  • Use low beam headlights if it is raining or sleeting

Anyone who experiences difficulties or witnesses hazardous situations while on the highway, can notify the nearest Louisiana State Police Troop by dialing *LSP (*577).

Traffic conditions can be monitored at 511la.org or the Louisiana 511 smartphone app.

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Cold kills 22 stuck in cars in heavy snow at Pakistan resort


ISLAMABAD (AP) — At least 22 people, including 10 children, died in a popular mountain resort town in Pakistan after being stuck in their vehicles overnight during a heavy snowstorm as temperatures plummeted, officials said Saturday.

Most of the victims died of hypothermia, officials said. Among them was an Islamabad police officer and seven other members of his family, fellow police officer Atiq Ahmed said.

More than 4 feet (1 meter) of snow fell in the area of the Murree Hills resort overnight Friday and early Saturday, trapping thousands of cars on roadways, said Interior Minister Sheikh Rashid Ahmed. The snow was so severe that heavy equipment brought in to clear it initially got stuck during the night, said Umar Maqbool, assistant commissioner for the town of Murree. Temperatures fell to minus 8 degrees Celsius (17.6 degrees Fahrenheit).

Officials called in paramilitary troops and a special military mountain unit to help. By late Saturday, thousands of vehicles had been pulled from the snow but more than a thousand were still stuck, Ahmed said.

Most roads leading to the area’s resorts were largely cleared of snow by late Saturday, and military troops were working to clear the rest, Maqbool said. The military also converted army-run schools into relief camps where they provided shelter and food for the tourists who had been rescued.

Emergency officials distributed food and blankets to people while they were trapped in their snowed-in vehicles, but many died of hypothermia. Others may have died from carbon monoxide poisoning after running their car heaters for long periods of time, said rescue services physician Abdur Rehman. As of late Saturday, the death toll included 10 men, 10 children and two women, Rehman said.

In one instance, a husband and wife and their two children all died in their car. In another, four young friends died together, he said.

Located 28 miles (46 kilometers) north of the capital of Islamabad, Murree is a popular winter resort town that attracts well over a million tourists annually. Streets leading into the town are often blocked by snow in winter.

___

Associated Press writer Asim Tanveer contributed to this report.



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Winter storm set to bring up to 30 cm of snow to South Coast as extreme cold grips north


Environment Canada has issued a slew of weather alerts for British Columbia as coastal and interior communities brace for heavy snowfall and frigid temperatures continue to create dangerous conditions in central and northern areas of the province.

Winter storm warnings are in effect Wednesday for several regions including Metro Vancouver, the Fraser Valley, Vancouver Island, the Central Coast, Howe Sound, the Sunshine Coast, the Okanagan Valley and the West Kootenay.

A low-pressure system is forecast to spread heavy snow across the South Coast starting Wednesday night, with up to 20 centimetres of snow predicted for Metro Vancouver by Thursday and up to 30 centimetres possible over Howe Sound and the Fraser Valley.

On Thursday, the snow will begin to transition to rain across Metro Vancouver as the system brings in milder air and temperatures begin to rise. 

Environment Canada is recommending people only travel in Metro Vancouver for essential reasons until conditions improve as rapidly accumulating snow could make road conditions treacherous. 

TransLink says crews are preparing for the storm by swapping out its 18 metre-long articulated buses for more agile 12-metre vehicles on steep routes such as up Burnaby Mountain and around the North Shore.

Spokesperson Tina Lovgreen advised transit users to pad their commutes with extra time and check TransLink’s website and Twitter for the latest route conditions.

Travellers can also expect up to 25 centimetres of snow across most of Vancouver Island before Thursday morning. The northern tip and Haida Gwaii could see a possible 30 centimetres and, along with the central and north coasts, high winds.

Snow on the Island is expected to turn to freezing rain early Thursday. During this transition, there is a risk of freezing rain for central and eastern Vancouver Island, as well as the Malahat Highway.

Extreme cold continues

The federal weather agency has also placed many central and northern communities under extreme cold warnings, with temperatures expected to dip below -40 C in the Peace River area, the Bulkley Valley, Cassiar Mountains, the Chilcotin, Fort Nelson and Prince George.

It says a very cold air mass is hovering over northeastern B.C. and will remain in place for the rest of the week.

For the Peace River region, there will be minimal relief from the cold during the daylight hours due to persistent winds.

At the most northern point of the province, around Dease Lake, wind chill values could drop to near or below -45 C, especially during the morning and overnight hours.

Wintry conditions in northern B.C. led to an ice jam on the Fraser River near Quesnel, B.C., on Tuesday. (Submitted by Kevin Toews)

There are also extreme cold warnings for southeast B.C. In the Elk Valley, it will feel like -35 C with the wind chill Wednesday afternoon, Environment Canada said.

“Extreme cold puts everyone at risk,” it warned in a statement.

The agency is reminding people to cover up if they need to go outside, as frostbite can develop within minutes.

To find the precise weather predictions for your community, visit Environment Canada. For current road conditions, visit DriveBC.





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City Alerts Community about Strong Cold Front


CORPUS CHRISTI, TX – According to the National Weather Service a strong cold front will move into Corpus Christi Sunday morning between 1:00 a.m. and 3:00 a.m. Temperatures are expected to drop into the low 40s with winds between 40 and 45 miles per hour until around noon. While it is expected to warm up during the day, the area will experience several hours of at or below freezing temperatures Sunday night into Monday morning. The City has an emergency management plan to address issues such as individuals and pets in need of shelter and utilities.

Homeless Shelters:

On Sunday, January 2, the Salvation Army will open the old shelter location at 521 Josephine for overflow. Intake will be from 6:00 p.m. to 8:00 a.m. Good Samaritan is also opened and taking people in at 210 S. Alameda. Males and females are welcome. Intake is 24 hours a day. The City is partnering with the Gulf Coast Humane Society to shelter the pets of persons who are homeless. The City will be conducting outreach on Sunday to reach people who may need assistance.

Warming Centers:

The City will also offer daytime warming centers within the city limits. City Warming Centers are not a place to sleep nor eat. No pets will be allowed, and no food will be provided.

Strict COVID-19 protocols will be in place to include temperature checks upon entry and facemasks are recommended. Visitors will be expected to follow Center for Disease Control (CDC) and State COVID-19 recommended guidelines such as maintaining 6 feet social distancing, along with other best personal-protection practices.

Sunday, January 2, and Monday, January 3, from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.:

Broadmoor Senior Center                 1651 Tarlton                        826-3138 

Northwest Senior Center                   9725 Up River Road           826-2320

Library location available Monday, January 3 from 9:00 a.m. to 6:00 p.m.:

La Retama Central Library                  805 Comanche                  826-7000

Animal Care Services:

In anticipation of the upcoming cold weather, Animal Care Services has increased the number of on-call officers from one to three to help with calls concerning pets left outside in cold weather. This increase of officers will be in effect for tonight and Sunday night when the temperatures are expected to be at their lowest. Citizens are encouraged to bring their pets inside in advance of the temperature drop.

The City reminds pet owners that there is a city ordinance requiring adequate sheltering of canines during cold weather.

Protect Property:

To minimize property damage, citizens are advised to take appropriate steps to help protect their property and:

  • Wrap all exposed pipes located outside or in unheated areas of the home with newspaper, insulation, or towels.
  • Remove garden hoses from outside faucets. Insulate outside faucets with a Styrofoam cover, rags, or paper.
  • Cover vents around the foundation of your home.
  • Know where the water cut-off valve is located and how to use it. You should apply oil such as WD-40, to the cut-off valve before operating to prevent the valve from breaking.
  • Open kitchen and bathroom cabinets so warmer air can circulate below the sinks.
  • Shut off irrigation systems. Water runoff from irrigation systems can travel onto the street and freeze, creating hazardous conditions for drivers.
  • Commercial customers should insulate or drain all exposed pipes.

If you are not staying at home:

  • Cut water off at the property owner’s cut-off valve.
  • Drain all outside water faucets if your house will be unoccupied for several days (leave outside faucets open).
  • Set the thermostat in your house at no lower than 55ºF
  • Open cabinet doors under sinks adjacent to outside walls.
  • Ask a friend or neighbor to check your house daily to make sure it’s warm enough to prevent freezing.

Space Heaters:

The Corpus Christi Fire Department wants to make sure residents stay safe and warm during winter weather conditions by providing the following safety tips when using portable space heaters:

  • Inspect all heating equipment prior to use.
  • Make sure all space heaters are clean and dust-free.
  • Choose electric space heaters that are UL approved with automatic shut-off or tip over safety features.
  • If using extension cords, make sure they are the proper size and length.
  • Never run extension cords under rugs or carpets.
  • Keep space heaters at least three feet away from furniture and other flammable items.
  • Install smoke and carbon monoxide detectors, replace batteries regularly.
  • NEVER use charcoal grills or other fuel-burning devices indoors.
  • Keep an eye on children and pets when using space heaters.
  • Always turn space heaters off when leaving home.  

Protect your plants:

  • Bring your smaller container plants, especially succulents, indoors. Mulch or cover outdoor plants with straw, blankets, or cardboard.
  • To prevent heat loss from sides of containers, push together large outdoor pots and wrap the bases with a blanket.
  • Rosemary topiaries or potted citrus plants or roses should be moved close to the wall of your house for warmth.
  • Don’t worry if plant leaves wilt; they protect themselves against the cold by dehydrating themselves. Given time, most will perk back up.
  • If you see damage from frost (black or purple flaccid leaves or stems), particularly on woody perennials, wait until the spring to prune to not shear off healthy tissue.

For more information, stay connected with our City social media channels Facebook @citygov and Twitter @cityofcc.



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Cold And Wintry New Year’s Day Across Green Country


Bundle up! Some Arctic air is surging into Green Country to kick off the new year.

Temperatures are in freefall mode Saturday. In the Tulsa metro, we’ll drop into the 20s during the afternoon with stiff north winds pushing wind chills into the teens and single digits.

Any afternoon precipitation will be much lighter than what we had early this morning, but some patches of freezing drizzle will be possible across northeastern Oklahoma.

A secondary band of light to moderate snow will move across eastern Oklahoma later tonight, most likely from about the 9 p.m. to midnight timeframe. Any accumulation would be minor for most of us, but a few localized areas west and southwest of Tulsa could see a quick coating of ½” or so of snow on grassy surfaces.

Jan. 1, 2022 WX blog

That snow will taper off to flurries early Sunday morning with bitter cold conditions. We’ll have lows in the lower teens with wind chills below zero Sunday morning.

WX blog Jan. 1, 2022 3

I hope you have a great New Year’s, Green Country! We’ll be keeping you updated throughout the day on our cold and wintry New Year’s. You can follow me on Twitter @StephenNehrenz as well as my Facebook page Meteorologist Stephen Nehrenz to stay up to date with the very latest.  



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Weather forecast: Snow and cold will make for difficult post-Christmas travel for US West and North


Across the Intermountain West, “travel will remain dangerous and is discouraged, especially along mountain passes where long duration closures are likely. Dangerous avalanches are also likely in the Sierra Nevada, Washington Cascades, Northern Rockies, and Wasatch,” the Weather Prediction Center said Saturday.

Bitter cold in the coming days will impact states from Montana to Michigan.

“Dangerously cold wind chills. Wind chills as low as 55 below zero,” the National Weather Service office in Great Falls, Montana, said Sunday in an update. “The dangerously cold wind chills could cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 5 minutes.” The warning remains in effect until Monday afternoon.

Meantime, unseasonable warmth will continue to toast the South as wildfire risk stretches across the central Plains.

Avalanche warnings in 6 Western states

All this snow may be a ski lover’s dream, but it also covers roads and reduces visibility. Avalanche warnings were in effect Sunday for portions of Nevada, Utah, Idaho, Montana, Colorado and California as recent heavy snowfall and wind have made for widespread areas of unstable snow.

Injuries reported in 20 car pileup during whiteout conditions in Nevada
“Avalanches may run long distances and can run into lower angle terrain typically thought of as safe,” the Eastern Sierra Avalanche Center warned Sunday.
Large snow and rain systems have moved through Western states in the past few weeks, resulting in impressively high snowpack for California. The Golden State by Saturday had recorded 130% of its normal snowpack for that date; it had been at only 18% on December 1.
And more moisture is on the way for much of the West over the next several days. New snowfall will be measured in feet across the Sierras, Cascades and Rocky Mountains. A band of heavier snow has setup in the Seattle metro area Sunday, with snow accumulations of 4 to 6 inches expected, with locally higher total possible.
Heavy rainfall is expected in lower elevations, possibly leading to localized flash flooding in places where the ground is saturated. Las Vegas, for example, has picked up 2 inches of rain since Wednesday — four times its December average. Rain is due to return there Monday, potentially mixing in with some snow on Tuesday.
More rain also is forecast for parts of the West Coast that saw heavy rain the past 24 hours. That includes areas of Santa Barbara County, California, and other northwestern Los Angeles suburbs, which just picked up over an inch of rain. A weather gauge near the University of Southern California campus reported nearly a 10th of an inch in just 2 minutes overnight Saturday, according to the NWS office in Los Angeles.

Frigid conditions for the Midwest

Snow will fall Sunday across the Upper Midwest, with accumulations of over a foot possible from the Dakotas through northern Michigan. Winter storm alerts have been issued for eastern North Dakota, northern Minnesota and northwest Wisconsin.

Skier dies after being 'fully buried' in a Colorado avalanche
“Accumulating snow, along with potential drifting will make some roads nearly impossible to traverse,” the weather service office in Grand Forks, North Dakota, said Sunday. “As we head into Monday, blowing snow becomes more of an impact, with reduced visibility likely.”
As this system sweeps over the Great Lakes, lake-effect snow enhancements are certain as most of the lakes remain ice-free. Heavy lake-effect snow coupled with winds gusting to 40 mph will lead to near-blizzard conditions. Blizzard warnings could be issued, according to weather service in Duluth, Minnesota.
“Temperatures outside in the Northern Plains will be frightful this week,” the prediction center said Sunday in a tweet. “A large area will drop below 0F with some areas falling to -30F. Wind will make it feel even colder. Very limited exposure — if any — outside would be ideal.”

Even after this system moves through, the cold temperatures don’t let up.

Morning lows are forecast to be sub-zero across portions of Montana and North Dakota, with daytime highs Sunday struggling to get out of the single digits. By Monday morning, lows are forecast to be bitterly cold, potentially as cold as below 15 to below 25, and wind chills will be even colder.

Fargo, North Dakota, goes from a high of 25 degrees on Monday to a high of only 1 degree on Tuesday. Denver sees a similar drop, from 48 degrees Monday to 34 degrees Tuesday.

Warmth continues further south, as does fire threat

Remarkably warm temperatures remain anchored over the southern US and will continue into the first half of the week. Over 250 total daily record warm lows and highs are expected to be broken in the next few days.

Temperature departures today will be warmest in the southern Plains, with highs in the 70s and 80s — 25 to 40 degrees above normal.

A “critical risk” of fire weather — level 2 out of 3 — is in effect across the Texas and Oklahoma Panhandles and in eastern Colorado and western Kansas owing to the unusually warm temperatures, low humidity levels and windy conditions.

Sustained winds of 30 to 50 mph with gusts of 60 to 80 mph could lead to blowing dust and difficult travel conditions across these regions Sunday. High wind warnings and red flag warnings are in place.





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Six Ways to Escape the Cold This Winter


Guides

Here’s your step-by-step winter playbook for getting out of town and into the sun.


Indulge your wanderlust with Antigua’s turquoise waters. / Photo via Roberto Moiola/Sysaworld/Getty Images

1.
Hop on a Direct Flight

Pack your bags, take an Uber to Logan, and let the getaway begin.

San Diego, California

Flight Time: 6 hours, 40 minutes
Avg. January High Temp.: 66°F

WHY GO: Less traffic and pretension than L.A., better weather than San Francisco.

STAY: Set in the Gaslamp Quarter, the 317-room Pendry oozes luxury with custom furnishings and marble-clad bathrooms. Relax at the rooftop pool by day and tip back a pint or two at Nason’s Beer Hall—the on-site pub—at night.

DO: Paddle your way through seven sea caves at San Diego-La Jolla Underwater Park, an ecological and marine wildlife reserve and literal hidden gem. Have kids in tow? Check out the rides and live shows at Sesame Place, which debuts this March.

EAT: Portside Pier at the Embarcadero opened in 2020 with four eateries, including the well-loved Brigantine Seafood & Oyster Bar. Might we suggest the swordfish tacos? —D.G.

Sand and surf in San Diego. / Photo via Corey Jenkins/Getty Images

Dubai, United Arab Emirates

Flight Time: 12 hours
Avg. January High Temp.: 75°F

WHY GO: Audacious skyscrapers, dazzling nightlife, and resorts that offer uncommon luxury.

STAY: One of Dubai’s newest resorts is Th8 Palm, which
features floor-to-ceiling windows and full kitchens in its all-suite accommodations. Bonus points for the outdoor bar– and food truck–equipped beach club.

DO: Journey to the top of the world’s tallest building, Burj Khalifa, for 360-degree views of the city. Not into heights? Find your next Insta post at the Miracle Garden, home to more than 150 million flowers, instead.

EAT: Steal away to Shanghai Me, where you can tuck into modernized East Asian dishes such as crispy duck salad and sweet-and-sour prawns in the company of bamboo and banana trees on the restaurant’s jungle-like terrace. —D.G.

The desert outside Dubai. / Suzana Topita/Getty Images

Austin, Texas

Flight Time: 3 hours, 40 minutes
Avg. January High Temp.: 63°F

WHY GO: Killer live music, even better barbecue, and spectacular natural attractions including the Barton Springs Pool, a natural swimming hole warm enough to splash in year-round.

STAY: Set in a Greek Revival–style mansion, the 47-room Hotel Ella balances historical charm with quirky touches such as the former owner’s extensive pistol collection (because, Texas).

DO: Before hitting the funky boutiques in Austin’s SoCo neighborhood, embrace the city’s legendary weirdness at the Cathedral of Junk—a delightfully strange sculpture of discarded car parts, tools, toys, and other found items.

EAT: Fill up on brisket, pulled pork, or ribs at Franklin’s, Salt Lick, or La Barbeque. You’ll need the fortification for a night of carousing on “Dirty 6th” Street, from which you can recover with breakfast tacos at Rainey Street Burgers the next morning. —J.S.

The Texas State Capitol in Austin. / Photo by DSZC/Getty Images

San Juan, Puerto Rico

Flight time: 4 hours
Avg. January High Temp.: 83°F

WHY GO: Sun-kissed beaches, stunning fortresses, and exciting nature adventures.

STAY: Check into the 43-room Palacio Provincial, which opened in 2021. Nestled inside a restored 19th-century building with high ceilings and Juliet balconies, the boutique hotel features sweeping San Juan Bay views from its rooftop pool.

DO: They call Puerto Rico “La Isla del Encanto,” or the island of enchantment. Experience its wonders firsthand with a guided hike and waterfall tour in El Yunque National Forest, a tropical oasis set in the Luquillo Mountains.

EAT: Exceptional cuisine is easy to come by in San Juan, which celebrated its 500th anniversary last year. Raise a glass to the town—and feast on such dishes as salmon confit with local pumpkin—at the Condado Vanderbilt Hotel’s renowned 1919 Restaurant, helmed by Michelin Star–winning chef Juan José Cuevas. —D.G.

A peek at El Yunque National Forest. / Photo by DENNISVDW/Getty Images

Key West, Florida

Flight time: 4 hours
Avg. January High Temp.: 76°F

WHY GO: Epic sunsets, world-class seafood, and carefree island vibes.

STAY: The new oceanfront Margaritaville Beach House features 186 coastal-chic suites, plus a lagoon-style pool and lawn games, among other amenities.

DO: Stroll down bustling Duval Street on your way to Sebago Watersports, where—as part of the Bugeye Backcountry Adventure Eco Tour—you’ll sail, kayak, and snorkel while peeping blue herons, dolphins, sea turtles, and more.

EAT: Milagro Restaurant and Bar is arguably the hottest new place in town, but then again, no one argues here. Sip on a pineapple mojito before indulging in wood-grilled octopus or beef-shank pozole. —D.G.

A coral reef near Key West. / Photo via EDB3_16/Getty Images


The Cholla course at We-Ko-Pa Golf Club. / Photo by Lonna Tucker

2. Hit a Hole in One

Perfect your golf game—and score a tan while you’re at it.

You’d be hard-pressed to find a more relaxing setting for golf than Arizona’s Sonoran Desert. Exhibit A: We-Ko-Pa Golf Club near Scottsdale, owned and operated by the Yavapai Nation. The two 18-hole championship courses—the award-winning Cholla and the newer Bille Coore– and Ben Crenshaw–designed Saguaro—wind over painted desert ridges, shadowy canyons, and gently flowing arroyos. The recently refurbished resort and casino, meanwhile, features a spa, horseback riding, off-road tours, and more. Want to switch it up? Book a tee time just down the road at the Grand Canyon State’s newest golf destination, Sterling Grove Golf & Country Club in Surprise, home to Arizona’s first Jack Nicklaus–designed course for public play since 2016. The tree-lined, par-72 beauty has been open since January 2021, but Sterling Grove’s clubhouse—complete with a spa and a fitness studio—is slated for its big reveal in early 2022. —D.G.


Photo courtesy of Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Riviera Maya

3. Take the Kiddos to a Nickelodeon Resort

Family time in five-star accommodations? Yes, please.

Until now, slime has never been a selling point of any luxury resort, but things change. Opened in August 2021 along a gorgeous stretch of beach on the Yucatán Peninsula, the five-star Nickelodeon Hotels & Resorts Riviera Maya includes 280 oceanfront and swim-up suites, six restaurants, plus a wealth of additional Nick-specific touches (think: themed décor and character meet-and-greets). The resort’s true jewel, though, is the 6-acre AquaNick waterpark, where you’ll find lazy rivers, an activity pool, and 21 thrilling slides for all ages. To that end, rest assured: There are plenty of diversions for the 21-plus crowd as well. Indulge in a couple’s spa treatment or venture to the Bikini Bottom Bar, where mixologists are at the ready. For live music and games, there’s even an orange-couch-equipped Snick Lounge—the perfect spot for Gen-Xers and older millennials to try to explain the ’90s to their kids. —D.G.


A Hillside Pool Suite at Hermitage Bay. / Photo by Alexis Andrews/Hermitage Bay Antigua

4. Embrace Nature at an Eco-Lodge

Say “yes” to sustainability without sacrificing luxury at these Earth-friendly resorts.

Nayara Springs
Costa Rica

Consistently named one of the world’s top all-inclusive resorts, this jungle lodge near Arenal Volcano features a sloth preserve, gardens that give Eden a run for its money, and on-staff naturalists to guide you through the rain-forest canopy. Looking for a different kind of excursion? The surrounding area offers opportunities for horseback riding, kayaking, ziplining, and more.

Hermitage Bay
Antigua

An all-inclusive, five-star resort overlooking a pristine beach, Antigua’s Hermitage Bay was specially designed to blend in with its environment. Its pared-down suites, accented by dark-wood finishes, help keep the focus on stunning ocean views. Natural detergents and bath products, meanwhile, affirm the resort’s dedication to sustainability.

A peaceful perch at Awasi Iguazu / Photo courtesy of Awasi Iguazu Argentina

Awasi Iguazu
Argentina

It’s easy to feel connected to Mother Earth at this Relais & Châteaux resort, set in the Atlantic Forest. With walls of oversize windows, wrap-around wooden decks, and private plunge pools, each of the property’s dreamy villas—built on stilts to curb environmental impact—offers a front-row seat to the sights and sounds of the jungle. Admire any number of bird or plant species from the comfort of your pad or hop into your personal 4×4 vehicle to get closer to the action; it’s included with your stay. —J.S.


A bird’s-eye view of the Aerial resort in the Caribbean. / Photo courtesy of Aerial BVI

5. Revisit the Revitalized Caribbean

It’s safe to say lots has changed since your last island vacay.

With Hurricane Irma in the rearview, the hardest-hit area of the Caribbean took the past few years to reboot and rebuild. On St. Barts, the legendary Hôtel Barrière Le Carl Gustaf—a five-star resort in the island’s capital city—reopened in 2020 with an outpost of the beloved Paris eatery Fouquet’s and a private beach club. Similar luxury awaits at the brand-new Oil Nut Bay in the North Sound area of Virgin Gorda; accessible only by boat or helicopter, the plush property features rentable villas and a marina complex popular among the super-yacht set. You’ll also find fresh digs at the Aerial. Located on a 43-acre private island near Tortola, the wellness-focused resort—which began welcoming guests last May—offers tranquility and solitude via five swoon-inducing lodges. The U.S. Virgin Islands, meanwhile, now boasts Lovango, a self-contained oasis near St. John with outdoor-shower-equipped treehouses, posh glamping tents, and the region’s first beach and pool club. —J.S.


Glenwood Hot Springs in Colorado. / Photo via LynnGrae/Getty Images

6. Dip into the Hot Springs

What could be more relaxing than kicking back in nature’s own Jacuzzis?

Glenwood Hot Springs
Glenwood Springs, Colorado

Spanning more than 40,000 square feet, this Colorado mainstay is the largest hot-spring pool in the world. Spend the day lounging or swimming laps in its toasty waters, which also include a splash zone for the little ones in your crew, then head to the historical Hotel Denver. With roots stretching to 1915, the soon-to-be-renovated hotel charms with hardwood floors, exposed-brick walls, and antique furnishings.

Yellowstone Hot Springs
Gardiner, Montana

Towering conifers, snow-capped mountains, and bald-eagle sightings are all part of the experience at this literal hot spot in Montana, located just under 15 minutes from Yellowstone National Park. Once you’re done exploring the two warm-water pools (plus the cold plunge pool, if you’re feeling brave), retire to Sage Lodge, opened in 2019 in nearby Pray. Gas fireplaces, freestanding soaking tubs, and an on-site steakhouse await.

Crystal Hot Springs
Honeyville, Utah

These pleasantly warm Utah waters, which bubble to the surface from a depth of 8,000 feet, boast the highest mineral content of any hot spring on the planet. Soak up all of the benefits from elements such as calcium and iron before making the one-hour trek to Salt Lake City; that’s where you’ll check into the plush Grand America Hotel, bedecked with Italian glass-enclosed showers, handcrafted cherry-wood furniture, and down bedding. —Andrea Timpano





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Cold Weather US States Struggling to Hire Snowplow Drivers | Pennsylvania News


By AMY BETH HANSON, Associated Press

HELENA, Mont. (AP) — More U.S. drivers could find themselves stuck on snowy highways or have their travel delayed this winter due to a shortage of snowplow drivers — a reality that could hit home Friday as winter storms start dumping snow from the Intermountain West to the Upper Great Lakes.

States from Washington to Pennsylvania, including Montana and Wyoming in the Rocky Mountains, are having trouble finding enough people willing to take the comparatively low-paying jobs that require a Commercial Driver’s License and often entail working at odd hours in dangerous conditions.

“We want the traveling public to understand why it could take longer this season to clear highways during winter storms,” said Jon Swartz, the maintenance administrator for the Montana Department of Transportation, which is short about 90 drivers. “Knowing this helps motorists to plan ahead and adjust or even delay travel plans.”

The labor shortage and lingering concerns about the pandemic have left employers scrambling to find enough school bus drivers, waiters, cooks and even teachers. The shortage comes as the number of Americans applying for unemployment benefits dropped last week to the lowest level in 52 years and some are seeking a better work-life balance.

Political Cartoons

Several states are either already feeling the crunch or could be soon: Heavy snow is predicted in the coming days in large swaths of the country, including Utah and Colorado, where more than a foot (30 centimeters) is forecast in higher elevations. Over a half a foot could drop in parts of Nebraska and Iowa. Parts of Nevada and New Mexico also expect winter storms.

State transportation departments say there are several reasons for a lack of snowplow drivers: the record low unemployment rate, an aging workforce and an increased demand for diesel mechanics and CDL drivers in other industries. Private companies can also be more nimble — raising salaries and offering bonuses to drivers — than state agencies, which usually have to get legislative approval to change salaries.

“Everyone’s sort of competing for the same group of workers and private companies can often offer higher salaries than the state government,” said Barbara LaBoe, spokesperson for Washington state’s Department of Transportation.

Along with the competitive market, LaBoe said Washington also lost 151 winter operations workers who did not want to comply with the state’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate.

One of the main competitors for states seeking workers with a Commercial Driver’s License are private trucking companies that have been raising driver pay, in some cases several times this year, to fill their own shortages and meet the increasing demand to move freight and clear supply chain bottlenecks.

The American Trucking Associations estimates there will be a record shortage of just over 80,000 drivers this year, and that doesn’t include the shortfall in drivers for school buses, public transportation or snowplows.

The ATA says the shortage has many roots, including many drivers nearing retirement age, the pandemic causing some to leave the industry and training schools churning out fewer new drivers in 2020. Others may leave the industry because they don’t like being away from home while an increase in the number of states legalizing marijuana leads to more drivers being unable to pass a drug test, the ATA says.

Some states are willing to hire snowplow drivers and pay for their CDL training, but it’s not likely those hires will be ready to work this winter, officials said.

Some snowplow drivers work year-round in highway maintenance jobs, while seasonal workers are hired to fill the additional shifts in the winter.

The shortage is leading states to make plans to shift mechanics and other full-time employees who have Commercial Driver’s Licenses into plows, which can cause problems if a plow needs maintenance work and the mechanic is out driving.

Wyoming has priorities for which roads will be plowed first and for how many hours per day plows will operate on each roadway. Interstate 80, the major east-west corridor across the southern part of the state, can be plowed around the clock while plowing stops on other roads, such as Interstates 90 and 25, between midnight at 4 a.m. Those guidelines may come into play more this year, said Luke Reiner, director of Wyoming’s Department of Transportation.

In Washington, LaBoe said some roads and mountain passes will be closed longer than usual during and after significant storms and some roads may not receive the same level of service.

Brief or isolated storms won’t cause problems in most states, in part because departments can move drivers and equipment around based on the weather forecast.

“If we have a series of storms over several days or if it hits the whole state at once, (the shortage) is going to become more evident because we don’t have as deep a bench,” LaBoe said.

Washington is still short about 150 seasonal and full-time workers, but things have improved since October when it was short 300 workers.

Even if states are able to hire drivers with commercial licenses, they still have to train them to run a snowplow and load the truck with salt and sand before learning a route.

“When you’re plowing the road you need to know where the bridge abutment is and where the expansion joints are so you don’t hook that with a plow,” LaBoe said.

Pennsylvania is short 270 permanent positions and 560 temporary ones, but the Department of Transportation said that doesn’t mean the roads will be treacherous this winter.

“Our goal is to keep roads safe and passable rather than completely free of ice and snow,” said Alexis Campbell, spokesperson for the Pennsylvania Department of Transportation. The roads will be cleared once the snow stops, she said.

Ease of travel is important to businesses. Capitol Courier has contracts with deadlines to deliver electronic replacement parts from their warehouse in Helena, Montana, to about 30 businesses around the state as soon as they call.

“The roads are critical to what we do,” said Shawn White Wolf, co-manager of Capitol Courier.

Snowplow drivers are devoted to their jobs, understanding their work is critical to the safety of the traveling public and to emergency responders, said Rick Nelson director of the winter maintenance technical service program for the American Association of State Highway and Transportation Officials.

Still, he understands that convincing newcomers “to be out there in the worst conditions” can be difficult.

Nelson said the shortage means states will be shifting resources when they can and making sure roads are clear during times of peak demand while “you try to recruit, get out there and beat the bushes and convince folks that jumping in a plow in the middle of the night at Christmastime is a good career choice.”

Copyright 2021 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.



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Athlete vaccines; Holiday travel reminder; Breezy, cold day


RICHMOND, Va. (WWBT) – Before you head out the door to travel for the Thanksgiving holiday, here’s a look at our top headlines!

Breezy & Cold

Coldest day and night of the season then a slow warmup peaks on Thanksgiving.

Today will be mostly sunny, breezy and cold. Highs in the mid 40s.

Deadly Parade Crash Update

The SUV driver who plowed into a Christmas parade in suburban Milwaukee, killing at least five people and injuring 48, was leaving the scene of a domestic dispute that had taken place just minutes earlier, Waukesha’s police chief said Monday.

Police Chief Dan Thompson said that there was no evidence the bloodshed Sunday was a terrorist attack or that the suspect, Darrell Brooks Jr., knew anyone in the parade. Brooks acted alone, the chief said.

Darrell Brooks
Darrell Brooks(Waukesha Co. Sheriff’s Office)

Brooks, 39, of Milwaukee, had left the site of the domestic disturbance before officers arrived, and was not being chased by police at the time of the crash, according to the chief, who gave no further details on the dispute.

Police said they were drawing up five charges of intentional homicide against Brooks.

Hopewell Considers Vaccines For Athletes

As we continue living through a pandemic, school districts in the area are working to navigate what’s appropriate for teachers and staff when it comes to vaccines.

For Hopewell Schools, that means the possibility of soon requiring vaccines for student-athletes who take part in what leaders call “close contact” sports.

While the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine decreases over time, doctors say if you’re...
While the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine decreases over time, doctors say if you’re vaccinated, you don’t need to dictate your behavior based on what month past your second dose you may be in.(WBAY Staff)

That includes wrestling and basketball, as opposed to other sports like golf or cross country, where players don’t have to be in close quarters.

Right now, the only requirement is for Hopewell athletes to get a COVID test each week.

Suspect In Big Stone Gap Officer Murder

Thirteen charges have been brought against 33-year-old Michael Donivan White following the November 13 shooting that left Officer Michael Chandler dead on his 29th birthday.

SW Virginia Regional Jail (Courtesy)
SW Virginia Regional Jail (Courtesy)(SW Virginia Regional Jail (Courtesy))

White was arrested that night by the Kingsport, Tennessee Police Department’s Patrol Division, Criminal Investigations Division and SWAT Team at the Travel Inn in the 800 block of Lynn Garden Drive.

He is being held without bond. He is scheduled for arraignment on the probation violation served by the Wise County Sheriff’s Office on Tuesday, Nov. 23, 2021.

Vaccine Clinic In Goochland

A free COVID-19 clinic will be held in Goochland County on Nov. 23.

Anyone age 5 and older can get a vaccine and a flu shot.

(Source: KAIT-TV)

Appointments are required. To set up an appointment, visit the Chickahominy Health District’s website.

The vaccine clinic will take place at Reynolds College Goochland Campus from 3 p.m. to 6 p.m.

Holiday Hours

The Virginia Department of Health’s Chesterfield Health District is announcing its holiday hours for Thanksgiving week at the Community Vaccination Center (CVC).

The center is located in the Rockwood Shopping Center at 10161 Hull Street Road in Midlothian.

(Allison Baker)

The Rockwood CVC offers first, second and booster COVID-19 vaccination doses at no cost. To make an appointment visit vaccinate.virginia.gov or call 877-829-4682 (TTY users call 7-1-1).

Click here for a list of hours for the week of Nov. 22-28.

Car Seat Inspections

The Richmond Ambulance Authority, AAA Mid-Atlantic, and Richmond Fire Department are resuming Child Safety Seat Inspections ahead of Thanksgiving travel.

(ky3)

According to AAA, holiday travel will reach pre-pandemic levels. Over 53 million people are expected to travel for Thanksgiving this year, with more than 1.4 million travelers in Virginia.

Today, car seat inspections will take place at Walmart Supercenter located at 2410 Sheila Lane from 3 p.m. to 5 p.m.

A Reminder From VSP!

Virginia State Police are urging drivers to be patient and practice caution during this Thanksgiving week as there will be more cars on the road and more traffic enforcement present.

State police will be participating in Operation C.A.R.E. (Crash Awareness and Reduction Effort) to prevent traffic deaths and injuries during the holiday. Police will increase visibility and traffic enforcement from Wednesday, Nov. 24 through Sunday, Nov. 28.

FWPD investigates suspicious death
FWPD investigates suspicious death(WPTA)

Virginia State Police also want to remind drivers of the “Move Over” law requiring vehicles to move over when near an emergency vehicle stopped alongside the road.

If unable to move over, drivers are required to cautiously pass the emergency vehicle. The law also applies to workers in vehicles equipped with amber lights.

Final Thought

Life isn’t a matter of milestones, but of moments – Rose Kennedy

Copyright 2021 WWBT. All rights reserved.

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Rain, wind and cold temps could impact Thanksgiving travel in Connecticut


News 12 meteorologists say rain, wind and cold temperatures may impact travel plans ahead of Thanksgiving.

TODAY: Sun to mostly cloudy skies later. Chilly, less wind. Highs in the upper-40s.

TONIGHT: Clouds gather. Dry and mild. Lows around 40.


SUNDAY: Mostly cloudy, rain arrives in time for dinner and beyond. Breezy and milder. highs middle-50s.

MONDAY – AM ALERT: Rain moves through quickly, gone by mid-morning. Winds freshen. Sun returns. Temps drop from 50s into 40s.

TUESDAY – WEATHER TO WATCH: Partly cloudy, cold and blustery. Highs lower-40s, winds gust to 35 mph. Feels like middle and upper-20s at times. Passing flurry possible.


WEDNESDAY: Less wind more sunshine. milder highs in upper-40s.

THURSDAY- THANKSGIVING: Mostly sunny middle-50s.



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