Great Lakes Filled With Plastic Bits
In mid-February, ice covered 90 to100 percent of Lakes Superior, Erie, Huron, and St. Clair. Lake Michigan was 82 percent ice covered, while 43 percent of Lake Ontario lay under ice, reported the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
This year's ice coverage stands in contrast to the trend of the past four decades. From 1973 to 2010, maximum ice coverage on the Great Lakes declined by 71 percent, according to NOAA.
'Polar Vortex' Event Paltry Compared to Past Freezes
On February 17, frozen Lake Huron proved to be a life-saver for six passengers and the pilot of a small airplane, reported 9 and 10 News. The pilot made an emergency landing on the solid water of the lake after the aircraft's engine quit during a trip to Mackinac Island. Rescue crews placed plastic sleds under the plane's wheels and towed the aircraft to St. Ignace, Mich. using snowmobiles.
Top Image: An ice-covered pier on Lake Erie. Credit: Corbis. Bottom image: Great Lakes ice coverage, Feb. 25, 2014. Credit: NOAA, Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory, National Ice Center