The first winter storm of the season has swept across northern Mexico, painting its landscapes in snow and bringing with it a chill that has surprised residents. The communities of El Vergel in Balleza and Guadalupe y Calvo were particular recipients of the snowfall, with temperatures plummeting to -8 and -3 degrees Celsius respectively. The city of Parral also felt the chill with temperatures dropping to -1 degree Celsius, accompanied by a notably cold wind.
Snowy Surprise Despite Forecasts
This wintry event, brought about by Cold Front Number 11, took residents by surprise despite prior forecasts. The transformation of their communities into snow-covered landscapes prompted many to share pictures of the spectacle on social media. The National Meteorological System (SNM) had previously predicted that the winter storm would affect the northern plateau, leading to rain or snow in the mountainous regions of several states including Chihuahua, Coahuila, Nuevo León, San Luis Potosí, Zacatecas and Durango. The polar air mass associated with the cold front was also predicted to bring frigid temperatures to high altitude areas across the country.
Weather Phenomena Leading To Snowy Conditions
The National Meteorological Service attributes this weather event to a polar trough that extends over the northwest of Mexico, which is expected to develop a cold core vortex at the junction of Chihuahua, Durango, and Sinaloa states. This system is interacting with polar and subtropical jet streams, leading to snowy conditions in the mountainous regions and rain elsewhere in the state. These conditions are anticipated to continue at least until the following Thursday.
Impacts and Precautions
The snowy conditions have led to the closure of several road sections in Durango and Zacatecas for the safety of motorists, including the Durango-Villa Unión and Durango – Mazatlán highways. As well, authorities have urged drivers to exercise caution and reduce their speed to avoid accidents. Civil Protection units have also urged the public to take extreme precautions against the low temperatures to prevent respiratory diseases, particularly among children, older adults and individuals with certain medical conditions.