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Weekly Wrap-Up: Deadly Ice Storm Slams Central US; Historic Flooding Inundates Chennai, India

A major ice storm slammed the central United States, bringing treacherous travel to many drivers over the Thanksgiving holiday weekend. The storm was blamed for multiple traffic fatalities in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas, according to the Associated Press.

From Friday, Nov. 27 to Saturday, Nov. 28, nearly 400,000 people in Oklahoma were without power at one point. As a result of the storm, Oklahoma Gov. Mary Fallin declared a state of emergency.

A snowstorm swept through the northern Plains and Upper Midwest on Monday and Tuesday. Fargo, North Dakota, received 3.2 inches of snow, while up to 10 inches fell across parts of South Dakota. Elsewhere, the Minneapolis area received its first significant snowfall as 2-4 inches covered the ground. The Minnesota State Patrol reported nearly 400 car crashes between midnight and 9 p.m. Monday.

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As the calendar flipped to December, several cities around the U.S. boasted their warmest November on record.

In New York City, the average temperature for November at Central Park was 52.8 F, surpassing the previous record of 52.7 F set in 2001. With an average of 69.2 F Tallahassee, Florida, broke its old record of 66.9 set in 1986. Naples, Florida, also had its warmest November on record, with an average temperature of 78.4 F beating the previous record of 77.8 F set in 1986.

Snow has been scarce across the East so far this season. In Buffalo, there has still not been any measurable snowfall, a stark contrast from last year's historically snow-filled November.

Meanwhile, Monday marked the conclusion of the Atlantic and eastern Pacific Hurricane seasons. There were 18 named storms, 13 hurricanes and 10 major hurricanes in the east Pacific, while the Atlantic had 11 named storms, four hurricanes and two major hurricanes.

Over the last month, persistent downpours across southern India have brought dangerous flooding and some parts of the country experienced the wettest November in over 20 years.

The daily downpours continued this week. On Dec. 1 Chennai, India, experienced its wettest December day in more than 100 years when more than 300 mm (12 inches) fell in the city.

According to the AP, at least 259 people have been killed in the state of Tamil Nadu since the rains began. The AP said thousands have been forced to evacuate as a result of the flooding, while hundreds of emergency personnel continued to help rescue people who were trapped in their homes.

Several AccuWeather meteorologists and staff writers contributed content to this article.


Have questions, comments, or a story to share? Email Kevin Byrne at Kevin.Byrne@accuweather.com, follow him on Twitter at @Accu_Kevin. Follow us @breakingweather, or on Facebook and Google+.