Alaska getting covered in snow

CORDOVA, Tenn. (CBS) -- The National Guard is still digging out Cordova, Alaska, working 24 hours a day to unbury homes and businesses.

Now with temperatures in the mid thirties, much of that snow is turning to slush.

A steady rain has made the snow even heavier and harder to move.

Glenn Anderson is the deputy harbor master, who's trying to keep boats from sinking. "With the rain on top of it each shovel load is...I don't know...weighs 30, 40, 50 pounds? It's like taking big large stones out of quarry."
That's why they called in the Coast Guard to help save Cordova's harbor.

Petty Officer Tyler Juel spent hours digging out the piers. "What does a boat mean to people around here? This is their livelihood. It means everything to them. These guys here, all they have is fishing. These boats go down, they can't feed their families, can't do anything."

Fifteen feet of snow contains more than 20 billion gallons of water. Folks there now fear flooding and temperatures are expected to plunge to the single digits here by Friday.

So the city is moving as many mountains of snow as it can before they freeze into icebergs.

There's so much snow in Cordova and nowhere left to put it so they actually brought a snow melter in on a barge. They dump the snow in it, heat it to 150 degrees and then it shoots out as water. That water will go to an inlet.

They'll have to make way for more snow to come. February and March are two of Cordova's snowiest months.

This weekend, officials in the town of Cordova are expected to receive an order of special shovels that can clear one cubic foot or more of snow at a time.


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