"Hatsuyuki" was experience in Tokyo Japan this month. The colloquial term means the first snowfall. For the first time in 54 years, the country's capital experienced November snow on Thursday, November 24. The rare weather condition shocked its residents as the snow came 40 days earlier than its normal appearance. The city averages four inches of snow annually which usually falls during months of January and February.
The sudden snowfall slowed down public transportation, causing traffic, accidents and increased electricity usage due to the heating demand. According to Japan Times, "East Japan Railway Co. said services on parts of the Ome and Chuo lines were suspended as snow-laden tree branches sagged over the tracks. Trains on other lines, such as Seibu and Keio, as well as subway systems in Tokyo also experienced delays, operators said.
On Thursday morning, electricity consumption spiked to 95 percent of capacity due to rising demand for heating, according to Tokyo Electric Power Company Holdings Inc." According to firefighters and other authorities, there are also reports of injuries surrounding prefectures. Some people accidentally slipped on snowy roads and pavements that leads to fractured bones and inconvenience.
The unusual occurrence was brought by the Arctic air that escaped in its normal route around the North pole. Arctic oscillation is an index that fluctuates over time with no specific periodicity. It is of the dominant pattern of non-seasonal sea-level pressure variations north of 20N latitude, and it is categorized by pressure irregularities of one sign in the Arctic with the opposite anomalies positioned about 37-45N.
The last time Tokyo experience November snow was in 1962, though it did not accumulate on the ground. During that time, the first contemporary skyscraper, the Kasumigaseki Building, is still on construction and not yet erected. After the Thursday freezing, nowadays Tokyo is back to its regular weather condition.
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