Speed Reads

there's a storm coming, mr. wayne

Massive storm expected to hit western Alaska this weekend

A massive storm is expected to move through western Alaska this weekend, bringing with it threats of costal flooding, heavy rain, and high winds, The New York Times reports.

The incoming weather system is thanks to Typhoon Merbok, remnants of which are "forecast to move north through the Bering Sea region from Friday through Sunday," the Times writes, per the National Weather Service. Flood and wind warnings have been issued for Nome, Stebbins, and Point Hope, among other areas. Widespread power outages are also possible.

"It looks like it could be one of the worst storms we've seen in at least 50 years, out on the west coast," Scott Berg, a meteorologist with the weather service's Fairbanks, Alaska office, told the Times.

In Nome, the weather service has warned of water levels up to 11 feet above the normal high tide line; in Golovin, it's 13 feet. In some areas, "peak water levels will persist for 10 to 14 hours before water recedes," the Fairbanks office said, per The Associated Press.

Most of the locales bracing for impact are most concerned about any potential infrastructure damage, Berg told the Times. "We're looking at inundation of the communities," he said. "We do get storms several times during the winter, but this is a pretty significant storm that's going to push water into areas that probably hasn't seen flooding in 50 years or more."