Wednesday, December 31, 2008

Following up on the Fairbanks Freeze

From Dermot Cole's blog at the Fairbanks Daily News-Miner;

"Record cold is not in the forecast, but the duration of the cold snap could create problems with mechanical equipment. Forty below is not just the number at which the temperature scales match. It also marks a dividing point, below which certain temperate zone objects refuse to function.

The longer this lasts, the greater the chance that poorly insulated pipes will freeze and that cars will decide to hibernate.

"It appears increasingly likely that an even colder airmass will progress west out of the Yukon and across the Interior Thursday and Friday," the weather service said Monday.

'This will likely send temperatures down to as cold as 60 to 70 below in a few of the normally cold spots in the eastern Interior valleys."

'In urban Fairbanks, temperatures may get as cold as 50 below in town by late in the week and 50 to 60 below in the rural valleys.' "

He says that maybe next year (that would be next week), the temperatures will start to rise. The good news is that next year will arrive as at least one new years celebration is off the cancelation list.

“It’s not going to be as comfortable for the spectators,” said Mike Thomas, sponsor of the annual Sparktacular on the UAF’s West Ridge. “But you know, most of us have been here for awhile and we just deal with it.”

Lynn Dowler, secretary of the Goldstream Valley Lions Club, agreed.

The club has sponsored a fireworks display at the Kunkel Center on Goldstream Road for the last five years. The show starts between 9:30 p.m. and 10 p.m.

“I guess we’re going to do it no matter how cold it is,” Dowler said. “Everyone dresses pretty warm, and we’ll have a bonfire right there.”

Stick by that bonfire, and whatever you do, don't go to Circle (Hot?) Springs, which is one of the locations expected to get a lot colder.

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