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Frostquake story was informative, helpful

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I would like to compliment Dr. Revetta’s report in the Watertown Daily Times on Jan. 6 regarding the cold-weather thumping sounds that north country residents have been experiencing.

The recent ice storm left a thickness of interlayered ice and sleet pellets both on the ground and on the roofs of homes creating a frozen crust as rigid as ice on a lake. As lake ice forms, it expands, letting out a sharp report resulting in pressure ridges and internal cracks. Similarly, ice storm ice on a roof that is warmed during the day expands as the temperature drops at night and produces a thunderous house-shaking boom.

In my backyard, I have seen pressure ridges in the ice crust, and I have heard an audible component as they form. Also, bare water-saturated ground will produce noisy frost-heaves as the temperature drops.

John T. Johnson

Gouverneur

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