A rare blizzard warning has been issued for mountains on Hawaii’s Big Island, potentially bringing up to a foot of snow.
The National Weather Service (NWS) has warned that wind gusts of above 100mph (160 kph) and 12 inches (30.4 centimetres) or more of snow were possible.
From Sunday morning, the NWS has advised that travel should be restricted to “emergencies only”.
As of 3pm EST, only two states in the U.S. have a winter weather product issued within their borders. One is Alaska and the other? Hawaii! 🌴 The current snowpack on Mauna Loa’s summit can be seen with visible satellite, with more snow expected to fall this weekend. pic.twitter.com/EVFkXHzRFN
— NWS Weather Prediction Center (@NWSWPC) December 2, 2021
For those who must travel, a winter survival kit has been recommended.
Blizzard warnings in Hawaii are rare. CNN reported it has been three-and-a-half years since a warning has been issued by the NWS in Hawaii.
Mountains on Big Island have peaks measuring almost 14,000ft (more than 4,200 meters).
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Hawaii’s rare blizzard warning comes as regions far more used to snow go without.
The Rocky Mountains, which stretch some 3,000 miles across Canada and the US, typically experience wintry weather, however this year they are nearing a record number of days without any snow.
In comparison, Denver, Colorado, known for its cold winters and heavy snowfall, has matched a record set in 1973 for high temperatures of 23C (73F).