Posted by on February 15, 2021 3:16 am

Tags:
Categories: Coal Region Newswire 2 Local News Pennsylvania Winter Weather

SPIA index ice storm severity

With the potential for an ice storm to hit Schuylkill County this week, we wondered, what makes an ice storm a “bad” ice storm?

We all know that ice storms can lead to treacherous travel conditions. But the effects of an ice storm can be even more life-threatening the more that ice continues to accumulate.

Power outages can last for days – or even weeks, sometimes – and tree limbs could break which might lead to property damage.

But how much ice is too much?

SPIA Index

Luckily, there’s a chart to determine just how bad an ice storm can be and what to expect from the ice accumulations under varying circumstances. It’s called the SPIA Index, or Sperry-Plitz Ice Accumulation Index. It was developed by a meteorologist (Steven Piltz) and severe weather response expert (Sidney Sperry) who created this system that assigns a level of severity to ice storms similar to how tornadoes and hurricanes are rated.

The SPIA Index uses a scale of 0-5. And an ice storm gains intensity on this scale based on several factors:

  • Ice accumulation
  • Temperature
  • Wind speed

SPIA Index was developed only back in 2009.

Ice Storm Damage Index

Let’s take a look at how ice storms are rated by the SPIA Index.

Here’s a handy chart Sperry and Piltz developed to help gauge when an ice storm increases in severity:

Photo: License via Depositphotos

Subscribe to Coal Region Canary

Get email updates from Coal Region Canary by becoming a subscriber today. Just enter your email address below to get started!
Loading

Canary on Social Media

Follow Coal Region Canary on Facebook.

And check us out on Twitter.

News Tips?

Let us know of news happening in your area. Use our NEWS TIPS ENTRY FORM

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *