Summer Surprise: Guadalajara, Mexico is buried in several feet of ice due to a hailstorm.

Residents of Guadalajara, Mexico, were stunned at the end of June 2019 when a freak hailstorm left behind several feet of ice, destroyed countless homes, and buried vehicles. What’s more perplexing is that the storm occurred in the middle of summer, with temperatures hitting over 90 degrees Fahrenheit the day before.

More than 450 homes were heavily damaged by the hailstorm, with some being buried all the way up to their walls, according to officials. Furthermore, more than ten people were treated for hypothermia symptoms.

Since Guadalajara is Mexico’s most populous city, over 1.5 million people were affected, necessitating the use of heavy equipment to dig people out of their homes and clear the streets. Governor Enrique Alfaro Ramrez says the storm was unlike anything he’s ever seen, and he hopes it will raise awareness about the dangers of climate change.

Of course, as the temperatures started to rise again, the ice began to melt, transforming the streets into open rivers with enough force to sweep cars away. This wreaked even more havoc on the local communities. The disaster destroyed 30 cars and over 60 homes in the city’s Ranch Blanco neighborhood.

Given that the majority of the hailstones were the size of a marble, John Allen, a meteorologist at Central Michigan University, was perplexed by the volume of hail. “Given that Guadalajara is well into the subtropics, you appear to have a major impact in melting as hailstones fall from the cloud toward the earth, and so having hail to remain on the ground like this needs intense amounts of hailstones to cool the air near the ground,” he explained.

Thankfully, the ice melted within a few days.

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