Nome seems to have received the biggest battering from the Bering Sea mega-storm that pummeled Western Alaska on Wednesday.
The Alaskan city, population 3,600, was the focus point of the storm, which forced authorities to issue a winter storm warning until 9pm Wednesday. With storm surges of 10 feet, a coastal flood warning was also in effect until 6pm. As you can see from above, some people weren’t taking said warnings that seriously.
Nome, on Norton Sound in the Bering Sea, is roughly 160 miles from the U.S.-Russian border.
Before the storm took hold, the National Weather Service was estimating as much as 18 inches of snow would fall. There would also be near-zero visibility, blizzard conditions, and winds between 50 mph and 70 mph. Said the NWS, gravely:
“Travel and outdoor activities will be extremely difficult and dangerous.”
Prior to the arrival of the storm, Nome’s small population was panic-buying, with the cost of food and water reportedly rising by the hour. How do we know? Simple: Nome resident and avid tweeter Scott A. Johnson told us so.
Johnson’s Twitter account (@akscojo) seemingly discusses every aspect of the storm, and details collapsed houses, flooding, waves powering over sea walls, and details of how city officials were having to shoo people away from roads by the coast, even as the storm peaked. Some of his tweets are below:
“Asparagus and corn selling well. Interesting the things people buy when bad weather approaches. #akstorm”
“It’s blowing so hard, the chandelier in the house is swaying side to side. #akstorm”
“Confirmed. Parts have Nome just lost power. I saw a big blue flash in the darkened sky and the street lights are gone. #akstorm”