John Bender / RIPR

Despite reports of flurries this morning, Rhode Island has not had its first official snowfall of the season. National Weather Service meteorologist Stephanie Denton says the center received reports of light flurries, in Northern Rhode Island, the Providence area, and South County.

“However, at the airport, which is where we officially measure for the state there was none reported. So officially there was no snow however many people did see snow,” said Denton. (By the way, that's T.F. Green Airport in Warwick.)

This I Believe Rhode Island: Seasons

Apr 15, 2015

No doubt you have noticed how our lives ebb and flow, much like the seasons.  Both literally and figuratively we get to experience the wonder of stunningly beautiful spring days and the bitter assault delivered by the occasional winter blizzard.  Such is life.  Indeed, seasons seem to be able to teach us so much about coping with life's inevitable ups and downs, including its bittersweet moments.  Consider the quote penned by the French Nobel existentialist Albert Camus: “In the depth of winter, I finally learned that within me there lay an invincible summer."  These are the sentiments echo

This I Believe Rhode Island: Still Winter

Mar 31, 2015

Nature can teach us so much about our world, about its glory and its anguish.  In nature we find so many lessons about hardiness, resilience, triumph and, yes, destruction and death.  The British poet William Wordsworth captured this sentiment in one line of his profound 18th-century poem entitled The Tables Turned: “Come forth into the light of things, let Nature be your teacher.”  And that’s what we hear from Meghan Elizabeth Kallman.

Meghan Elizabeth Kallman is a Ph.D. candidate in sociology at Brown University. She is a musician, a climate activist, co-founder of the Prison Op/Ed Project, and teaches at the Rhode Island state prison.

This harsh winter has been hard on all of us, and it's also taken a toll on our wildlife, especially waterfowl and songbirds. February is on record for the most number of injured birds a wildlife clinic in North Kingstown has taken during a winter season.

Kristin Fletcher, executive director of Wildlife Rehabilitators Association of Rhode Island, said frozen waters have made it difficult for waterfowl to fish. The nonprofit’s clinic is taking care of emaciated and dehydrated birds, including many Canada geese. Fletcher said winter is usually the clinic's quiet season. 

Yet more snow is on the way for Rhode Island.  The national weather service expects about one to three inches of snow starting late Tuesday afternoon.  

The snow is predicted to switch over to a wintry mix by midnight, lasting into Wednesday morning. Meteorologist Benjamin Sipprell said this could affect the Wednesday morning commute.

“As we go into Wednesday morning, temperatures will be pretty well above normal, so the expectation is for the morning commute, it may be a little soupy out there with very low visibility along area roadways,” said Sipprell.

John Bender / RIPR

This February is officially the snowiest on record in Providence, according to the National Weather Service.  A light snowfall on Tuesday night pushed the monthly total to 31.6 inches, breaking the city record set in 1962. 

Meteorologist Alan Dunham says that’s even more than the famed February blizzard of '78. “1978 is in third place with a total of 28.6 inches, for the month of February," said Dunham.

And forecasters predict the new record could get just a bit higher before the month is out.  An inch or less of snow could fall this afternoon. 

This I Believe Rhode Island: Winter

Feb 24, 2015

Here we are, right smack in the heart of another New England winter.  For some, this stretch of months with early sunsets is filled with dread -- frosty temperatures, snow piles to shovel, and ice patches to dodge.  But for others of us, this wintry mix is the stuff of pure delight.  As the poet Robert Frost wrote, "You can't get too much winter in the winter."  And we hear similar sentiments in this encore essay from Gabriel Warren.

John Bender / RIPR

Rhode Islanders will soon get a break from arctic temperatures, but the trade is more snow this week. After several days without a glimpse of the white stuff, the National Weather Service is predicting snowfall will return Tuesday night.  

Meteorologist Alan Dunham said Rhode Island won’t see the foot or more it’s seen in previous storms this winter.  “Maybe two to four inches.  Mainly Providence down towards Newport and points east, but even northwest part of Rhode Island up in the northwest hills could see an inch or two,” said Dunham.

Rhode Islanders are in for another arctic blast starting Friday.  Temperatures plunged into the single digits, and the National Weather Service says things will only warm up to the high teens through the weekend.

Meteorologist Mathew Belk, said wind chills will make temperatures feel far below zero. “Wind chills are going to be generally in the minus fifteen to minus 24 range, so it’s going to feel pretty chilly out there,” said Belk. 

Ambar Espinoza / RIPR

Despite the recent stream of bitterly cold temperatures, Rhode Island’s Low Income Heating Assistance Program still has plenty of money for the cold months to come.

Rhode Island received about $27 million dollars in federal assistance to support the program this year.  LIHEAP, as it’s known, helps some 34 thousand households pay for heating costs throughout the winter. 

Yet another winter storm has blanketed Rhode Island in snow.  This weekend saw more than a foot of the white stuff fall in areas including North Providence, Burrilville and Warren.  Residents are now dealing with arctic temperatures.

National Grid has completed installing the last of seven weather stations throughout Rhode Island. This program collects local weather information in real time.

The weather stations are strategically located in Coventry, Bristol, Charlestown, Exeter, Hopkinton, and Little Compton. The town of Westerly has had its weather station for only a couple of weeks, and already it’s proved to be useful, said Amy Grzybowski, the town’s emergency management director.

John Bender / RIPR

The snow is no longer falling, but transportation remains snarled across much of Southern New England.  Public transit has all but shut down in Boston, leaving commuters and others stranded in Providence.

The Massachusetts Bay Transit Authority halted all commuter train and Subway service at 7 p.m. Tuesday. That left riders in Rhode Island with few good options except Amtrak trains, and even those are running on a limited schedule.

Rhode Island Emergency Management officials are urging residents to help friends and neighbors dig out after the third snow storm in as many weeks.

State Emergency Management Director Peter Gaynor said everyone needs to pitch to help the state’s most vulnerable residents. "So the elderly, the very young and pets. They don’t have the ability to stand up to really cold temperatures or wind so keep an eye on your neighbor or your parents or your loved ones and make sure that they’re safe during these next couple days."

The latest in a series of snow storms is putting pressure on municipal budgets.  City and town leaders are reacting in different ways. 

In Pawtucket, snow-removal costs have led Mayor Donald Grebien to tell department heads to hold the line on new spending.