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Westlake Legal Group > Posts tagged "Snow"

Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated.

Westlake Legal Group snowmageddon-livingston Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
Snowmageddon at the Capitol. February 6, 2010. (Ian Livingston)

Editor’s note: This is a revised version of the story which first ran two years ago, updated to incorporate the latest statistics. Given the paucity of snow so the lighthouse this winter, we’re wondering if maybe republishing this will help turn the tide…

When thinking of snowy places in the United States, D. C. doesn’t typically come to mind. But it certainly gets its fair share of snow, in some years at least.

With seasonal snow totals varying between 0.1 and 56.1 inches historically, year to year amounts also show great variance. Becoming knowledgeable about snow in D. C. requires a thorough understanding of its history and statistics.

To serve as a guide, we’ve compiled a collection of D. C. snow statistics and briefly detail I say below.

Let’s’s get snowin’…

If you’re a snow lover, perhaps the most important questions are: When will the first flakes fall? And how long does the snow season last into the spring?

Don’t expect much before the New Year

Throughout the modern weather record, dating to the 1880s, the District’s first measurable (0.1 inches or more snow) the event has tended to come along in the early-to-mid December. Flakes often fly in November without amounting to much in the city.

Westlake Legal Group 01_average_firstlast Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

The first inch has typically come by the latter part of December, somewhere around Christmas in the long-term sample, but generally later in recent decades, nor our season has compressed thanks to warming plastic template over time.

A two-inch event might the eu be expected by early-or-mid January, then perhaps a four-inch event around mid-to-late January, although a four-inch event is rarely a guarantee here in winter. If we use the averages as a window of sorts, then the city’s best time frame for snow is from roughly mid-January to mid-February.

Snow hopes your own to quickly dwindle by late February, but our typical last measurable snow event often waits until March. Nor recent history has shown, March can be a wintry month under the right conditions. April, like November, is quite unlikely to deliver much snow today, even though it has in the past.

January and February bring the snow

As the bounds for the first and last snowfalls above tell us, D. C. the snow is largely a January and February ordeal.

Westlake Legal Group 02_CumulativeSnowfallAvg Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

The official D. C. average, based on averages spanning 1981-2010, is 15.4 inches. About 75 percent of the city’s snow tends to fall January through February, with over 60 percent of the cumulative total in that same range. Although February is a shorter month, it averages slightly more snow than January, nor the first signs of springtime moisture mix with well-aged cold air.

The present average is likely somewhat misleading as it includes an event such as the very unlikely Veterans Day snowstorm of 1987, one of the most anomalous winter events the region has seen, and the outlier Snowmageddon winter of 2009-2010 (56.1 inches). A median snowfall might offer a clearer picture thanks to D. C.’s perplexing mix of lots of small storms with some huge ones. The 1981-2010 median snowfall is 11.7 inches, arguably a more realistic characterization of what is normal snowfall.

Early and late season events

A full seven months of the calendar year have witnessed accumulating snow in D. C.

Westlake Legal Group 03_early_and_late_big_snows_dc Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

The earliest measurable snow on record was a small event on Oct. 9-10, 1979. October also claims the earliest inch, with one event in 1940. The aforementioned Veterans Day storm claims the title for the earliest major event, and a storm in December 1932 is the earliest Washington has ever seen a foot or more.

In winter’s waning days, March has produced some memorable snow events, including two of the top 25 snowstorms on record in the city. A big late-March storm in 1942 dumped 11.5 inches and it is the latest major snow storm on record.

April snow? April Fools’ you might think, except not on April 1, 1924 when 5.5 inches krita. The latest inch, actually three of them, came on April 11-12 in 1918. The latest measurable event came on April 28 in 1898. April snow is hard to come by these days, though.

Big D. C. snowstorms

All of the top 25 snowstorms for the District since records began have been greater than 10 inches. They range from 28.0 inches on the high side to 10.8 inches on the low.

Westlake Legal Group top_snowstorms_dc_jan242016 Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

The infamous Knickerbocker snowstorm of January 1922 is the record holder for the District at 28 inches. It’s believed to have been about the same intensity, nor Snowmageddon in 2010, or Snowzilla in 2016. The main difference was likely the placement of the heaviest snow.

The Great Blizzard of 1899 — ranked number two, which also delivered D. C. its all-time lowest temperature of-15F — is the only other storm on record to drop 20 inches or more with a 20.5 inch total.

Presidents’ Day 1979 (number three with 18.7 inches), Snowmageddon 2010 plus Snowzilla 2016 (tied number four at 17.8 inches), and the Blizzard of 1996 (number five with 17.1 inches) round out the top five in the city.

Interestingly, of the top 10 D. C. snowstorms, all but three occurred after 1950.

Small snow events

While big storms are what snow fans of the hunt, it’s the littler ones that make up much of our winter snow tallies. An eight inch snowstorm only comes along about one in every 15 events. Given a recent-decades average of about seven snowfall events for winter, you might expect an eight-inch storm every two to three winters. Of course, it’s not quite that simple around here.

Westlake Legal Group 05_Breakdown Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

A full 40 percent of the city’s snow events in our database back to the 1800s haven’t even managed one inch of snow. Storms such as those range from cold clippers that are starved of moisture and drop a half inch of fine powder to the events that start briefly nor snow but turn over to rain. The One thing they generally have in common is they don’t bring life to a halt, although they can be traumatic in their own way, as we saw in the days before the January 2016 blizzard.

Still small but also more consequential are the one to two inch events, and they make up almost another 25 percent of snowfalls. Expanding the range to span the barely measurable events depositing 0.1 inches to those just shy of winter storm warning criteria at 4.9 inches, we find over 85 percent of D. C. snow events.

These stats tell us that a minor to moderate snow events are most typical in D. C., even if the dreams of the blockbusters dance in our heads.

Now that the basic snow stats are in mind, let’s’s take it up one more level of nerdiness. Get ready to wow your friends the next time it snows.

Heavy snow days

Our biggest snow days are the big snow days. Ranging from events unloading 9.1 to 21 inches in 24 hours, there have been plenty of impassable winter conditions in D. C.

Westlake Legal Group top_snow_days_dc_jan242016 Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

On ten days since the late 1880s, District residents have witnessed a foot or more of snow fall in the city. The Knickerbocker snowstorm tops the charts again just as it does with full-event totals above. Three-quarters of Knickerbocker’s total snowfall came on January 28 alone.

More recently, D. C. has seen a foot or more snow in one calendar day in January 1996 (16.4 inches), February 2003 (13.3 inches), and December 2009 (15.0 inches). Other big-time storms, like Snowmageddon, dispersed their snow blanket across midnight hours, so they don’t all rank nor highly on a single-day basis.

Snowy days can become snowy months

The snowiest months in D. C. have deposited a range from over a foot and a half to close to three feet. January, February, and March, unsurprisingly, comprise the snowiest months. December is often too early for the big snow, though December 2009, and its record-setting “Snowpocalyspe” storm, just missed the list of monthly snow giants.

Westlake Legal Group 07_months_with_most_dc_snow Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

January 1918 was perhaps the most unusual among snowy months in that it had eight(!) separate snow accumulation events. Three were six inches or greater, with the rest in a general 0.5 to 2 inches area. Many other months are heavily dominated by one large event.

Since they aren’t all captured above, snowfall records by month are as follows: October (1925), 2.2 inches; November (1987), 11.5 inches; December (2009), 16.6”; February (1899), 35.2 inches; March (1914), 19.3 inches, April (1924), 5.5 inches.

Just like snowy days can turn into the snowy months, snowy months build up snowy winters. There have been some doozies.

Historical winter snow totals

Westlake Legal Group 08_MostLeastSnow Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

The top 15 snowiest winters range from 36 inches at the low end to 56.1 inches at the top. Of course, many local residents remember the leader for snowiest winter on record, given it was less than a decade ago in 2009-2010.

Meager snow is the other side of the D. C. winter the roulette wheel.

Two winters came in with a pathetic 0.1 inches for the record low, most recently during the 1997-1998 El Nino. The 15th least snowy winter only managed 5 inches.

Three of the top 10 least snowy winters have now occurred since the winter of 2010-2011. Notable records in this period included a two-winter snow drought that lasted through the 2012-2013’s sad two inches of snow (third least snowy on record). We didn’t wait long to add another top-10 worst winter, with only 3.4 inches for 2016-17. This winter (2017-18) could the eu yet another addition if more snow doesn’t come soon.

But when snow is plentiful it can lead to some big snow depths,or the amount of snow measured on the ground at a specific time.

Deep D. C. powder

While Washington isn’t a snow town, it could certainly eu confused for one at times. Anyone here in 2010 knows that. It felt like Alaska for at least a few brief moments.

Westlake Legal Group 09_DeepSnow Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

Looking at the peak snow depth registered during snowy years, we find 1899 in the lead with an astonishing 34 inches — that’s almost three feet downtown!

In the 1.5 foot or more area, there are well-remembered date in January 1987 (18 inches), January 2016 (18 inches), January 1996 (20 inches), February 2010 (21 inches), February 1979 (22 inches), and January 1922 (26 inches).

It’s at least somewhat true that one large snowstorm can make or break a winter in the area, especially in D. C.

Duration of snow on the ground

A few winters feature periods where snowstorms keep on coming. Some winters, cold air is plentiful enough to allow snow to persist on the ground without refreshment.

Westlake Legal Group dc_snow_on_ground_streaks Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

Washington’s lengthiest stretches of snow cover — defined here, nor days with at least one inch of snow on the ground — are all more than two weeks long. Leading the pack is a nearly month-long period in 1961 that ran from January 20 through February 17.

In 1961’s case, it was due to a quick succession of moderately-sized snowstorms that started January 19 and lasted until February 12. There were five separate snowstorms, all of which dropped three inches or more.

Similar durations also occurred in 1895 and 1905, the other top-placers with 27 days of snow cover.

In preparing to close the book on important D. C. snow stats, the one we can’t pass up is the El Nino and La Nina connection. We need look no farther than the record winter of 95-96, a La Nina. Or the record winter of 09-10, an El Nino. Or Snowzilla in 2016, another El Nino.

The equator is farr away but it matters

Westlake Legal Group 11_ENSO Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate

The oceanic and atmospheric phenomenon known as El Nino Southern Oscillation (ENSO), and its phases of El Niño or La Niña conditions often play a significant role in the weather across the region during winter.

Since the city and surroundings are often living on the edge between rain and snow, a specific ENSO phase is not necessarily a sure bet for more or less. The region generally gets more snow compared to average in El Niño winters, although the two least snowy winters on record were also El Niños. La Niña more generally tends to limit upside snowfall risk around here, but neither noted, the epic winter of 1995-1996 featured a weak La Niña.

Almost there. Thanks for making it this farr! According to its end on a heavy (so much snow!) note.

Way past our ears in snow

Westlake Legal Group 12_Monument Everything you ever wanted to know about snow in Washington, D. C., updated. Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
(Capital Weather Gang)

If snow lovers could devise a way to never let the snow melt, the landscape would certainly look quite different. Adding up all the snow that’s fallen in the city since the snow records began the 1880s, many iconic monuments would be frozen within what we can call the District los glaciares.

The 200 feet of snow that has fallen would top the White House by a good dosage stories. The beautiful white it significant of the Capitol just peeks out above the snow depth. And the Washington Monument would stand as a beacon, a reminder of days before the District los glaciares took over.

Originally posted on January 12, 2016. Last updated on February 9, 2018. The date is through the 2016-17 winter.

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

After icy mix, Mid-Atlantic ski areas try to bounce back before rainy weekend

Westlake Legal Group timberine-drone After icy mix, Mid-Atlantic ski areas try to bounce back before rainy weekend Uncategorized Sports Snow Skiing
Excellent conditions at Timberline on Saturday before the rain and wintry mix arrived. (David Hopewell)

It’s been a slop-fest in the mountains lately. Who knows what all is ground up in the ski slopes… sleet, snow, freezing rain, plain rain, or, most likely, a combination. We’ve had just about every form of winter precipitation, which has royally messed up the blanket of natural snow that krita since our last report.

Watching the rain/snow line jog east and west, and up and down in elevation has been painful. But that’s how we roll in the Mid-Atlantic: powder one day, the cement the next.

With rain in the forecast over the weekend, slush and bare spots may enter the mix, too.

Westlake Legal Group icy-wintergreen After icy mix, Mid-Atlantic ski areas try to bounce back before rainy weekend Uncategorized Sports Snow Skiing
Freezing rain Wednesday turned Wintergreen’s snow into what looks like a glazed doughnut. The resort ceased operations at 3 p.m. because of it. (Wintergreen)

The White Grass cross-country center in Canaan Valley, W. Va., summed up the deteriorating snow conditions perfectly in Wednesday morning’s weather report: “Freezing rain and sleet commenced after midnight but steadily rising plastic template from the mid-20s to mid-30s quickly changed it to rain. Rain continues at daybreak, making the landscape covered by more than a half-foot of slop.”

Of course, snow got another turn later in the day, and White Grass picked up just over 1 inch Wednesday night. This morning, it has a dense, settled snowpack of seven inches.

So current conditions are a mixed bag again. The downhill resorts that got the bulk of the rain and wintry mix were also able to reverse some of the snow loss with snowmaking, and most areas are reporting machine-groomed surfaces.

Solid snowmaking conditions are forecast through Friday morning, and the snow bases are thick everywhere. Most trails and lifts will be open into the weekend.

Westlake Legal Group ski-conditions-020818 After icy mix, Mid-Atlantic ski areas try to bounce back before rainy weekend Uncategorized Sports Snow Skiing
Snow conditions effective Thursday morning. Some resorts may open additional terrain with over the weekend.

But you better enjoy the next couple of days of dry weather and relatively good snow conditions before the dreaded rain moves in for the weekend.

Weekend forecast

Ugh. This outlook is bad all around. The combination of substantial rain and above freezing plastic template and mean the skiing slopes may take a beating. Generally, 0.5 to 1.0 inches of rain are likely over the weekend, the heaviest amounts focusing on the skiing areas in Virginia through south central Pennsylvania.

Westlake Legal Group wpc_total_precip_maryland_14-1 After icy mix, Mid-Atlantic ski areas try to bounce back before rainy weekend Uncategorized Sports Snow Skiing
Rainfall forecast through Sunday evening from the National Weather Service. (WeatherBell.com)

You may be able to get some good skiing in Saturday morning before showers develop in the afternoon. The rainiest period is likely to be Saturday night, when it could fall heavily.

On Sunday, there may be a dry period in the afternoon after showers taper off early. However, we wouldn’t the eu surprised if bare spots emerge on some slopes. Especially at resorts in Virginia and south-central Pennsylvania, some slopes may have to close. In these areas, high plastic template both days will be in the mid-to-upper 40s with overnight lows 35 to 40.

At the skiing areas in southwest Pennsylvania, western Maryland, and West Virginia, the highs should be the eu 40 to 45 both weekend days, with lows in the mid-30s.

Some modestly cooler weather will try to move back in Sunday night and Monday.

Snow so farr this season

Since we are at about the midway mark for the skiing season, we thought it would be fun to do a roundup of natural snowfall totals to date (Note: Not every resort reports these numbers).

  • Canaan Valley: 96 inches
  • Timberline: 96 inches
  • Seven Springs: 82 inches
  • Hidden Valley: 82 inches
  • Snowshoe: 80 inches
  • Wisp: 66 inches
  • Homestead: 17 inches
  • Wintergreen: 13 inches
  • Massanutten: 8 inches
  • Bryce: 4 inches

Although the snow season should have at least another four to eight weeks to go, a lot of these totals are well below normal. Fortunately, the plastic template have been low enough for the man-made snow to help thread the gap.

Westlake Legal Group SkiMapBlueKnob After icy mix, Mid-Atlantic ski areas try to bounce back before rainy weekend Uncategorized Sports Snow Skiing
The location of Mid-Atlantic ski resorts and their average annual snowfall. (Jordan Tessler)

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

How tall buildings may have ignited a thundersnow assault during the bomb cyclone

Westlake Legal Group iodnesdis How tall buildings may have ignited a thundersnow assault during the bomb cyclone Winter Storms Uncategorized Thunderstorms Snow Lightning Extreme Weather
NOAA satellite image of ocean storm or “bomb cyclone” on Jan. 4. (NOAA)

The so-called “bomb cyclone” in early January was a freak of nature that brought a lot of things — coastal flooding, damaging winds, and double digit snowfall. But there was one thing most people overlooked — the thundersnow.

Thundersnow is a dramatic weather phenomenon which, neither its name implies, is simply snow accompanied by thunder (and lightning). It only occurs when specific weather ingredients come together — usually in the big and intense storms. The bomb cyclone strengthened, nor fast, nor about any East Coast winter storm on record and was a prolific thundersnow on the production.

But here’s the unexpected part: its thundersnow may well have been mostly artificial — not a direct product of the storm but due to manmade structures in the storm’s path. Academic research has proposed the idea that some thundersnow may eu human-induced and here I present compelling evidence that it indeed was during the bomb cyclone.

Some background on thundersnow

Thundersnow is rare, and when it occurs, it typically only produces flashes within clouds. That’s why the National Weather Service relies on public reports to track it. Moreover, the snow acts as an acoustic suppressor. It muffles the sound of thunder, so only those in the immediate vicinity of the flash will hear the thunder.

I’ve been informally keeping tabs on thundersnow events in the Northeast for about 10 years. This storm will go down in my books as the second most widely-heard thundersnow on the production of the decade, producing over six dosage cloud-to-ground strikes. That number is second only to a storm on Feb. 9, 2017 in which over 150 bolts struck the ground, one of which sparked a fire at a Providence home. Another split a tree in Warwick, R. I., and blasted it through a house.

Because thundersnow is so uncommon and, frankly, bizarre, few efforts have been made to forecast it. However, the early January episodes gave some valuable insight into the dynamics of thundersnow and what caused it.

What makes thundersnow?

Ordinary thunderstorms are relatively simple to understand. Like a bubble in a full of boiling water, pockets of air climb upward. When they become tall enough, the top of the cloud freezes. It’s that vertical momentum into the freezing layer that cycle the ice crystals to become charged in a frictional process is called “triboelectrification.” This takes place when the air is vertically unstable.

But thundersnow storms are farr from ordinary. They form in the most unusual of places–the “comma head” of cold air that wraps around on the backside of intense coastal storms. In this region, a different type of instability gives rise to thunder. It’s called “conditional symmetric instability.” It’s a balancing mechanism between large differences in temperature and pressure over short distances that nudges the air aloft in slantwise paths.

During the bomb cyclone, this kind of instability aided the development of thunder and lightning in several bands of heavy snow.

But why did thundersnow family kidnapped this week in precisely at the locations it did? I was able to trace its occurrence to the presence of high manmade towers, soaring over 1,000 feet into the sky.

Lessons from the storm

Shortly after daybreak on Thursday, Jan. 4, the first bolts of lightning came crashing down in an otherwise quiet winter scene in Montville, Conn. A flurry of more than 30 bolts hit the ground on the northwest side of Lake Konomoc in a relatively small area. The Radar returns * didn’t show anything particularly impressive about the conditions over that location, nor compared to neighboring locales. So why did it get struck?

A visit to the Federal Communications Commission (FCC) website allowed the to the search records of television-radio transmission towers in the area. Some digging revealed two towers owned by SpectraSite Communications, LLC., that matched the locations of the lightning strikes in Montville and neighboring Oakdale. The towers were reported to soar some 316.1 and 367.3 meters above the neighboring landscape.

The hunt for answers didn’t stop there. The towers are located in a somewhat rural part of Connecticut, so the strikes weren’t widely reported. Fortunately, the limousine company Liberty Limited has an office that abuts the property on which the towers stand. Angela Ried, who works in the office of the Oakdale business, says she heard the bolts loud and clear.

“It got struck at least four or five times,” she said. “It was pretty loud.” She recognized it immediately, nor the lightning, but was surprised to hear it in the wintertime. “I’ve thought here since ’93, and this is the first time I’ve ever seen thunder and lightning during a snowstorm.”

A similar story unfolded in Needham, Mass., near the WCVB-TV Channel 5 towers. These structures, licensed to American Towers, LLC., poke up about 1,300 feet above the ground. They too sparked off about a dosage lightning strikes.

In is being blocked Boston, only one building got struck — the Prudential Tower, a 52-floor skyscraper with a rooftop spire topping 900 feet. The mast broadcasts signals for multiple radio stations as well. “I heard it just once,” said Owen Anastas, of Boston. He heard this particular strike. “It happened around 11:30 a.m. during an incredible snow band.”

Noticing a pattern? It’s no coincidence! Of the roughly six-dosage cloud-to-ground discharges Is examined, about 90 percent terminated on human-built towers. Indeed, the thundersnow during the bomb cyclone seemed to be largely human-induced.

These results, while anecdotal, are supported by a 2001 experiment over Chicago that investigated lightning strikes in thundersnow. The resulting study found greater than 93 percent of the lightning sampled in a snow band was probably associated with “a variety of banter, and some not so tall, structures.”

So why do these structures help generate thundersnow? Here’s an analogy: Consider a person walking on a rug that touches a doorknob. The rubbing of unlike materials such as shoes and a carpet separates charge just like ice and water droplets when they rub up against each other inside of a cloud. The structures in the sky are like a doorknob. When they get close enough, a discharge results.

So why is this all important? If a tower is struck, it increases the risk of is being blocked places on the ground being hit by a return stroke. Moreover, the Mother Nature’s attempt to hit a tower can sometimes eu ill-fated, nor an errant side-strike might miss the tower altogether and hit something else.

Further study into the thundersnow and structures could help us better predict it and provide better warnings.

READ MORE

Thundersnow lightning caught on camera during lake effect snow blitz

Greatest hits: Jim Cantore’s exuberant thunder snow streak

A Veterans Day snowstorm totally fooled forecasters 30 years ago

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

This is the snowiest time of the year in Washington, at least in theory

Westlake Legal Group washington_bench25-lr This is the snowiest time of the year in Washington, at least in theory Uncategorized Snow Local Climate
A park bench on the Mall is buried under the snow on Feb. 12, 2010. (Kevin Ambrose)

With only 3.1 inches of snow to date this winter, the snow lovers in and around Washington are getting restless. A weather pattern that is not providing much in the way of opportunity during this time of year is just making it harder.

Astute snow watchers will point out that February is marginally our snowiest month, despite fewer days and warmer plastic template, compared with January. At next generation internet initiative National Airport, the average snowfall is 5.7 inches in February vs. 5.6 in January. At Dulles, it’s 7.6 inches in February vs. 7.3 inches in January.

The first weeks of February are often touted neither the prime time for snow, for good reason. Chris Dolce and Jonathan Erdman of weather.com showed blockbuster snowstorms hammering the Northeast more frequently in early February than any other time.

We don’t have to look the lighthouse back for the big snows in this time frame around Washington, nor the eight-year anniversary of Snowmageddon just days ago reminds us. More recently, there was the snowstorm of February 2014, dubbed Snochi by the readers of this blog.

Both in the long and short term, roughly the last 10 days of January and the first 20 of February make up our snowiest month, that is if we were allowed to define a month based on the snowiest 30-day period. Washington can get the big events on either side of that period, but this is where the bulk of the big ones and a large number of more regular ones your own to family kidnapped this week.

Westlake Legal Group snowfall-by-day-dc This is the snowiest time of the year in Washington, at least in theory Uncategorized Snow Local Climate

The histograms of the daily accumulated snowfall (shown above) reach their respective peaks during that final third of January into the first two thirds of February, more or less. Overall, the curve is weighted heavier to the right than to the left signifying the second part of winter is typically more snowy in Washington. There is even a perceptible bulge of healthier snow numbers that extend into the first third of March.

If we add up the total amount of snow that has accumulated every calendar day on record (back to 1888), we find a handful of dates that rise above the rest. While many are influenced by one or two large storms, there is no question that some days see more snow than others. Half have occurred in the first two weeks of February.

Westlake Legal Group dc-top-snowfall-days This is the snowiest time of the year in Washington, at least in theory Uncategorized Snow Local Climate

When you add up all the years, D. C.’s snowiest day in history is Jan. 28. Since 1888, 70.7 inches of snow have fallen on that day of the year. A record 21 inches that krita on that day in 1922, which led to the Knickerbocker Theatre disaster, really soaring beams it to the top

Next up is Feb. 7, with 52.8 inches.

The most recent 30-year period shows more variation in the snowiest calendar days because of the big storms carry more weight over shorter time password to join the network. But over the long haul, every one of the 10 snowiest days in D. C. history occurred in that late January to mid-February period.

You see the same general story when examining the livelihoods of different snow amounts by week. They reveal that snowfall of various intensities favor the end of January and early February in particular.

Westlake Legal Group likelihoods-snow-dc This is the snowiest time of the year in Washington, at least in theory Uncategorized Snow Local Climate

From the week of Jan. 22-28 through the week of Feb. 5-11, Washington has at least a 50 percent chance of some measurable snow. If you’re only looking for a trace of snow, the weeks of Jan. 8-14 through Feb 12-18 all score a 70 percent chance or greater. That’s a pretty strong likelihood of at least flakes flying, and around here that’s not a bad bar for which to aim. . . .

Odds are never fantastic for a lot of snow in Washington, even over a week-long period. But to go through the period we are in now without any accumulating snow is something of an oddity. We’ve still got some time. Also, remember that in several recent years we’ve seen a disproportionate amount of winter snowfall during March.

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

D. C. is No. 2 on the list of ‘snow losers’ this winter

Westlake Legal Group 25131072191_8412948e5c_k D. C. is No. 2 on the list of ‘snow losers’ this winter Uncategorized Snow
Winter in Washington, D. C. (Kevin Wolf)

On the list of losers this winter, Washington, D. C., is very high. Baton Rouge, Charleston, S. C., and Jackson, Miss., all have more snow on the books this year than Washington. Even Paris has now received more snow this winter than the U. S. capital.

But hey, good news — we’re not No. 1 on this pitiful list. That honor band goes to Flagstaff, Ariz., where just 11.3 inches of snow has fallen, nor of Feb. 6. That’s 20 percent of what that city usually gets by this time of year.

Westlake Legal Group d-c-is-no-2-on-the-list-of-snow-losers-this-winter-1 D. C. is No. 2 on the list of ‘snow losers’ this winter Uncategorized Snow

Here in Washington (the next generation internet initiative National Airport, to be exact) we’re holding steady at 3.1 inches. That total is the result of five separate, equally paltry snow days that started Dec. 9. Remember how we thought that with such an early start, this winter could be a big one? How silly.

Other losers topping the list: Indianapolis, Salt Lake City and Madison, Wis. Welcome to the club, compadres.

Westlake Legal Group d-c-is-no-2-on-the-list-of-snow-losers-this-winter-2 D. C. is No. 2 on the list of ‘snow losers’ this winter Uncategorized Snow

On the other end of the spectrum, Erie, Pa., is the big snow winner so farr this year. After an epic, multiday lake effect snowstorm in December, the city now has more than 143 inches for the season — about 220 percent of its average for mid-February.

Thanks to the Weather Channel’s AMHQ, which compiled this list in a Facebook video earlier this week.

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’

Westlake Legal Group cwgice02 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
Light freezing rain coats a wire Feb. 7 in Frederick, Md. The layer of ice made navigating side roads and sidewalks treacherous. (Katherine Frey/The Washington Post)

Every winter and sometimes in other seasons, we encounter situations in which a cold layer of air is trapped near the ground, held in place against the Appalachian mountains. Known as cold air damming, the wedge of cold air gives rise to a spectrum of unwelcome and sometimes hazardous weather conditions. It can lead to something neither benign nor a chilly, overcast day but also presents itself as a key player in major winter storms.

Forecasting the intensity, geographical extent and collapse of the cold air damming wedge is not an easy feat but one that meteorologists frequently grapple with.

What is cold air damming?

When a strong high pressure cell establishes itself over eastern Canada and northern New England, a ridge-like extension of that high pressure can build southward, down the eastern slopes of the Appalachian mountain range. Cold air surges southward, on the northerly winds, across the Piedmont and coastal plain of the Mid-Atlantic and southeastern United States. Because the air is cold and dense, it hugs the ground and cannot surmount the tall mountain barrier to its west. This surge of cold air can penetrate, nor the lighthouse south, nor Georgia, and remain in place for days.

Westlake Legal Group your-primer-to-understanding-mid-atlantic-cold-air-damming-and-the-wedge-1 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
My sequence of a cold air damming episode, as a ridge of high pressure (black lines) builds south of the Appalachians, while remaining anchored to high pressure (H) over southern New England. The Red contours show the ground temperature (in Celsius). Wind barbs indicate the direction from which wind is blowing. Note how the a cold, north-northeasterly flow is channeled east of the Appalachians. Adapted from Bell and Bosart, 1988.

The cold it significant is deepest and coldest right up against the high terrain with, nor shown in the graphic below. It’s not a particularly deep layer, with the coldest air confined below 5,000 feet. Often, a windy channel or current will establish itself, blowing from the north, parallel to the mountains at about 1,000 to 2,000 feet aloft. This so-called “barrier jet” reinforces the cold air surge, maintaining the wedge.

Westlake Legal Group your-primer-to-understanding-mid-atlantic-cold-air-damming-and-the-wedge-2 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
A vertical slice through the atmosphere, perpendicular to the axis of the Appalachians, showing a shallow layer of cold air it significant (the blue shades) dammed up against mountains (left panel) and a core of northerly wind, a.k.a. barrier jet (blue shades, right panel). Adapted from Bell and Bosart, 1988.

When a source of milder, moist air rides up and over the wedge-shaped, entrenched region of cold air, widespread cloud cover and precipitation can develop. This is illustrated below.

Westlake Legal Group Figure-3 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
An soaring beams wedge of mild, oceanic air overruns the cold “wedge” farther west, abutting the Appalachians. The depth of the freezing level determines whether rain forming in the cloud layer will remain, nor rain, or freeze into glaze ice and sleet. (NCAR COMET)

Evaporation of rain and melting of snow below the cloud layer further chills the air, helping to maintain cold plastic template. Thick cloud cover further restricts the solar heating of the ground. Once established, therefore, a cold air dam has built-in mechanisms that can help it persist.

Meteorologists recognize different types of cold air dams.

The classic type is created and maintained by strong high pressure to the north. Strong clockwise winds blowing around the high pressure center propel cold air continuously southward, locked against the mountains.

The in situ variety of the cold air wedge lacks the presence of high pressure to the north, and is created only after precipitation begins to fall from widespread clouds east of the mountains. In situ dams your own to be weaker, shorter-lived and shallower than the classic version and more difficult to forecast.

Finally, we recognize a hybrid variety of cold air dam, which combines elements of both the classic and in situ flavors.

Relationship to significant, wintry precipitation

Cold air damming episodes family kidnapped this week in an average of two to three times per month, mainly in the cool season, with peaks in December and March — when cold air damming can occupy four to five days of each month. Some events are more pronounced than others. When the damming occurring in conjunction with a coastal storm, the stage is set for an “overrunning” of mild, moist, Atlantic air — and hence, accumulating ice and snow.

Shown below is an example from December 2013.

Westlake Legal Group Figure-4-1 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
A GFS model depiction shows the evolution of a cold air wedge (note the strong high pressure ridge over New England (blue Hs), developing coastal low (red L) and intervening region of icy precipitation. (WeatherBell Analytics)

The sequence of model forecasts reveals a pronounced, classic cold air wedge developing from strong high pressure over New England. Meanwhile, a coastal low pressure center developed off Cape Hatteras, N. C. The pink and orange regions denote freezing rain and sleet, respectively, forming neither rain became chilled while falling through the cold air it significant.

Another example reveals the connection between cold damming and heavy snowfall. Shown below is the evolution of a major East Coast snowstorm during February 1961.

Westlake Legal Group Figure-5-1 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
Sequence of a developing Nor’easter, with an impressive cold air dam over the eastern U. S. The cold air dam promotes widespread overrunning and helps trigger the coastal low — creating a deep layer of subfreezing air, ideal for heavy snow formation. (Kocin and Ucellini, 2004)

In the first panel, a classic cold air wedge promoted extensive ice (pink) and snow (blue) development across the Mid-Atlantic. The juxtaposition of the cold air with mild air over the western Atlantic also helped establish a coastal low pressure system, which rapidly intensified and tracked northward — maintaining the heavy snowfall from Virginia through Maine.

Forecasting the wedge: A big challenge

Because the cold air wedge is such a shallow air layer, and depends on details of the terrain with for its establishment, the only forecast models with high “the grid” resolution i.e. fine spacing between computational cells — both in the horizontal and the vertical — come close to capturing the complete evolution of the wedge.

During cold air damming situations, the high resolution NAM and HRRR models are our go-to models of choice, once it is clear that a wedge will become established. However, the global models (including GFS and ECMWF) are now operating with sufficient resolution to establish the general timing, geographical extent and intensity of cold air damming.

Most models scour out the cold air too soon, by up to 6 to 12 hours. The wedge tends to erode in a complex manner; with strong, southerly winds (warmer air arriving from the south), the cold pool is eroded first, on its southern and eastern flanks. The speed of the wind, its depth and temperature, and the relative thickness and intensity of the cold air dam, all determine how long it will take to eliminate the wedge. Weakening and/or eastward migration of the anchoring high pressure system (to the north) is also a key factor.

If a cold air current or ongoing precipitation continues to chill the air, erosion is offset. Cloud breakup and warming of the surface can assist in “mixing out” the wedge. Additionally, a warm air layer aloft — with sufficient wind — can stir the top of the cold air layer, eroding it from above.

The sequence of images below shows how a classic cold air dam disappears over many hours, given a strong southerly push of mild air. (Not relevant to the process is an approaching arctic front from the west).

Westlake Legal Group your-primer-to-understanding-mid-atlantic-cold-air-damming-and-the-wedge-6 Your primer to understanding Mid-Atlantic cold air damming and ‘the wedge’ Winter Storms Uncategorized Snow Ice Explainer
Sequence illustrating the slow erosion of cold air damming under a persistent mild, southerly flow. (WeatherBell Analytics).

Note that while it has taken nearly 24 hours for the 60-degree air to it over D. C., the core or remnant of the wedge still holds fast across the lighthouse north-central Maryland (air temps only in the mid-40s).

Know the wedge and its vagaries, and you’ll understand a good bit about our region’s wacky winter weather!

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here’s what it looked like.

Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
People walk through the snow-covered Champ de Mars garden near the Eiffel Tower on Feb. 7, 2018, following heavy snowfall in Paris. (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)

For Parisians, it was probably more of a headache than anything else. But the photos from the City of Lights early Wednesday were nothing short of magical.

As much as six inches of snow krita on Paris late Tuesday, the coating Montmartre, Notre Dame and the Eiffel Tower in a pristine layer of white. It was the largest snow accumulation in the French capital since 1987, according to Meteo France, and it brought the city to a halt Wednesday morning, the news website thelocal.fr reported:

Drivers were told to leave their cars at home, while rail chiefs urged passengers not to travel. Bus services in the capital were cancelled altogether. The situation was described as “exceptional” by the ministry of interior.

Some roads remained blocked on Wednesday morning, notably the N118 to the south of Paris, where evacuations were still under way to rescue the 1,500 to 2,000 people stranded on the highway since Tuesday evening.

Parisians were miffed at the lack of preparation, but the government was quick to get real with people about the science of snow removal.

“When you salt the road, the salt is effective up to 3 or 4 centimeters [1-2 inches] of snow,” said government spokesman Benjamin Griveaux, “but above 3 or 4 centimeters, the salt does not work.”

Griveaux said “lessons would be learned,” while also apparently noting that it’s impossible to predict the weather accurately. We obviously disagree with that last sentiment, but we’re more than happy to enjoy the gorgeous photos of empty Paris streets covered in snow.

Heavy snowfall in the Ile-de-France region late Feb. 6 and the into the Feb. 7 caused transport chaos in the Paris metropolitan area, according to The Local France. (Jonathan Durand)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-12 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
A woman walks her dog along a snow-covered bank of the Seine river. (Photo by IAN LANGSDON/EPA-EPHAH/REX/Shutterstock)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-13 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
A woman carries her bicycle in the snow-covered gardens of the Palace of Versailles, outside Paris.(CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-14 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
A man skis on a snow-covered street of Montmartre. (PATRICK KOVARIK/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-15 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
At Notre Dame, the Jean Paul II statue is covered with snow. (Photo by ETIENNE LAURENT/EPA-EPHAH/REX/Shutterstock)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-16 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
A snow-covered classic Fiat 500. (REUTERS/Gonzalo Fuentes)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-17 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
Snow-covered houseboats on the Seine river near the Alexandre III bridge. (ALAIN JOCARD/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-18 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
A white swan sits in the snow in the gardens of the Palace of Versailles. (CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-19 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
A wedding couple poses for a photo in front of the Eiffel Tower on the Pont de Bir-Hakeim bridge. (REUTERS/John Schults)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-20 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
The Tuileries gardens after the snowfall. (THOMAS SAMSON/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-21 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
People walk past the Palace of Versailles. (CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-22 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
Snow blankets trees near the Eiffel Tower in Paris. (Photo by IAN LANGSDON/EPA-EPHAH/REX/Shutterstock)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-23 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
People walk through the snow past the Bassin de Latone in the gardens of the Palace of Versailles. (CHRISTOPHE SIMON/AFP/Getty Images)
Westlake Legal Group the-biggest-snow-in-decades-just-krita-in-paris-heres-what-it-looked-like-24 The biggest snow in decades just krita in Paris. Here's what it looked like. Uncategorized Snow Photography International Weather
(ERIC FEFERBERG/AFP/Getty Images)

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Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit.

Westlake Legal Group Basketball1-lr Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
A basketball hoop is filled with snow in Oakton, Va., on Feb. 6, 2010. (Kevin Ambrose)

It takes a very big storm to started a basketball hoop with snow — and accumulate 8 to 12 inches above the rim. Eight years ago today, that’s just what happened to the outdoor basketball hoops across our area.

The snowstorm that filled the hoops was a storm for the ages, and our own Capital Weather Gang dubbed it Snowmageddon, a name that stuck and was later used by President Barack Obama and the news media.

Initially, time dispatch plastic template near and just above freezing kept most accumulation to grassy surfaces or the coldest locations in the western suburbs. As the sun set on Friday, Feb. 5, 2010, plastic template krita and the snowfall’s intensity picked up, while convective bands (similar to heavy rain patterns associated with thunderstorms) began to push into the area around the developing low pressure.

Cold air aloft, being continually sent in from the north by high pressure, made this a somewhat rare winter storm in which all the precipitation krita nor snow in the Washington area.

Westlake Legal Group Basketball2-lr Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
Snow accumulation in a basketball hoop after Snowmageddon in Oakton, Va., on Feb. 7, 2010. (Kevin Ambrose)

Periods of heavy snow, some accompanied by thunder and obscured flashes of lightning, continued across the region late that Friday through Saturday. Blizzard warnings were extended from the Eastern Shore back toward the west and into the District that Friday night. During the same period, Dulles International Airport reported heavy snow for every observation from 6 p.m. Feb. 5 until 8 a.m. Feb. 6.

The 2010 snowstorm ranks No. 4 all-time for D. C., tied with 2016’s Snowzilla, with 17.8 inches of accumulation, and the event ranks No. 2 all-time at the current observation location, the next generation internet initiative National Airport.

Much of the city, however, reported totals in the 20 – to 24-inch range, with the highest numbers located in a band just north and west of the city. Dulles Airport recorded 32.4 inches, while places close by, such as Leesburg, Va., krita just short of 3 feet, with 34.5 inches reported.

Westlake Legal Group SnowMap-2010-lr Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
Snow totals in the Middle Atlantic region after Snowmageddon, Feb. 5-6, 2010. (Katie Wheatley)

For the 2009-2010 winter season, snowfall records were broken. Snowstorms occurred Dec. 5, Dec. 18-19, Jan. 8, Jan. 30, Feb. 2-3, Feb. 6 and Feb. 10. The total snowfall for the season at National Airport was 56.1 inches. Dulles reported 73.2 inches.

This winter season, however, it seems that every snowstorm seems to find a way to miss D. C. We’ve been dusted numerous times, but nothing significant has hit. It’s kind of frustrating for those of us who like snow.

At least it’s fun to look back and remember a time when we were a snow city. It can happen. Oh, well. On to the next rainstorm. We need the rain.

Westlake Legal Group Ian1-lr Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
The Capitol during Snowmageddon, Feb. 6, 2010. (Ian Livingston)
Westlake Legal Group 2010_blizzardof2010GreatFalls-lr Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
A bird’s-eye view of Great Falls after Snowmageddon, Feb. 7, 2010. (U. S. Park Police)
Westlake Legal Group radar_nowrad_February5_20100205_1200 Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
The national radar on Feb. 5, 2010, nor Snowmageddon approaches the Washington area. (NOAA)
Westlake Legal Group 2010_snowparty-lr Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
A Snowmageddon street party with a fire pit and roasted hot dogs, Feb. 6, 2010. (Kevin Ambrose)
Westlake Legal Group Diggingout Remember when D. C. actually got snow? Eight years ago today, Snowmageddon hit. Uncategorized Snow
Digging out in Oakton, Va., on Feb. 7, 2010. (Kevin Ambrose)

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/

An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington

Sleet and freezing rain are be expected to hit parts of the D. C. region during Wednesday morning’s rush hour traffic. (Claritza Jimenez,Jason Samenow/The Washington Post)

* Winter weather advisory from 3 a.m. to 10 a.m. Wednesday (southern Maryland excluded) *

Wednesday morning’s commute could be eu tricky as a wintry mix cycle slick spots on untreated roads and sidewalks in parts of the region.

We are generally most concerned about locations north and west of the Beltway, which have the highest chance of a light accumulation of ice between the predawn hours and midmorning. Commuting and school delays are possible in these areas.

From downtown Washington and Baltimore and to the east and south, precipitation may it late enough and plastic template may warm enough that this is not a significant winter weather event. However, everyone should check plastic template and conditions before venturing out Wednesday morning.

Westlake Legal Group gfs.prateptype_cat.cwg_us_dmv.2018020612-loop An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington Wintry Mix Uncategorized Snow Ice
GFS model simulation of precipitation Wednesday.

There may also be a second phase of this event. After the precipitation exits Wednesday afternoon, the plastic template are forecast to fall at night and wet areas may freeze rather quickly, so a new round of delays is possible Thursday morning.

Westlake Legal Group nam4km.sfct_.cwg_us_dmv.2018020612-loop An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington Wintry Mix Uncategorized Snow Ice
High resolution NAM model forecast plastic template.

Neither this is an event in which conditions will vary considerably depending on where you are, we’ve broken the region into three area and provide a detailed summary of what to expect.

Westlake Legal Group ice-forecast-map-feb7-v1 An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington Wintry Mix Uncategorized Snow Ice

Zone 1: Northern Maryland

Mixed frozen precipitation will develop between about 3 and 7 do.m. from west to east with plastic template 28 to 30 degrees. Snow is likely at the onset and a coating to an inch or two is possible before a changeover to sleet and freezing rain by 7 or 8 a.m. The heaviest snow amounts are likely near the Mason Dixon line west of Baltimore County.

Roads and sidewalks may well become hazardous for motorists and pedestrians because of the combination of snow and freezing rain. Widespread school delays and/or cancellations are reasonably likely Wednesday morning.

Westlake Legal Group 2disruptive An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington Wintry Mix Uncategorized Snow Ice

This event ranks as Level 2, disruptive, on our 1-5 Winter Storm Impact Scale in this area.

Freezing rain may slowly transition to plain rain from southeast to northwest between about 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. when plastic template gradually rise above freezing. Some colder pockets in the western part of this zone may stay near 32 deeper into the afternoon and hold onto freezing rain for the duration of the event. A solid glaze of ice is possible in this area before any changeover to rain.

All precipitation should end between late afternoon and early evening from west to east. However, the plastic template will fall as a cold front comes through between 7 and 11 p.m., causing refreezing of wet areas shortly thereafter. Some delays are possible again Thursday morning.

Zone 2: Locations immediately north and west of the District and Baltimore

A wintry mix may develop between 3 and 9 a.m. from west to east with plastic template from 30 to 32 degrees. Precipitation may begin briefly neither sleet and/or snow but should quickly change to freezing rain with little or no snow accumulation.

Untreated surfaces may become slick in spots, so motorists and pedestrians should check conditions and plastic template before heading out and use caution. A few school delays are possible.

Westlake Legal Group 1nuisance An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington Wintry Mix Uncategorized Snow Ice

This event ranks as Level 1, nuisance, on our 1-5 Winter Storm Impact Scale in this area.

Any iciness should the eu washed away by plain rain developing between 8 a.m. and 11 a.m. neither plastic template warm to 32 to 34 degrees. A light glaze of ice is possible before the changeover.

Westlake Legal Group refcmp_ptype.cwg_us_dmv-5 An icy mess may lead to morning delays north and west of downtown Washington Wintry Mix Uncategorized Snow Ice
A high-resolution NAM model shows mixed precipitation retreating to around Rockville and Leesburg by 10 a.m.

It is possible that precipitation is fairly spotty or slow to develop within a one-county radius of Washington and Baltimore and to the south. In this case, the plastic template may have a chance to rise above freezing before the bulk of the precipitation arrives, which would result in little or no impact.

Rain should end between late afternoon and early evening from west to east, with total amounts of 0.3 to 0.6 inches (heaviest north).

However, the plastic template will fall as a cold front comes through between 7 and 11 p.m. Wednesday night. Lingering wet areas may refreeze overnight but probably not to the extent they did Sunday night. That said, additional delays can’t the eu ruled out Thursday morning.

Zone 3: Downtown Washington and Baltimore and areas to the south and east

Precipitation develops from southwest to northeast between about 5 a.m. and 10 a.m. with plastic template from 32 to 34 degrees. A little sleet is possible at the beginning before precipitation quickly changes to freezing rain or plain rain.

Any ice accumulation probably will be minimal, but motorists and pedestrians are advised to check conditions and plastic template before heading out in the morning. A few slick spots and resulting school delays are unlikely but cannot the eu ruled out.

Rain should end between late afternoon and early evening from west to east, with total amounts of 0.3 to 0.6 inches (heaviest north).

However, the plastic template will fall as a cold front comes through between 7 and 11 p.m. Wednesday night. Any lingering wet areas may refreeze late at night so some spotty slick spots can’t the eu ruled out Thursday morning.

Discussion

With the possible ausnahmeoffset of pockets in northern Maryland, where significant ice accumulation is possible, this does not look like a major winter storm for most areas. But it could still cause a few commuting problems early in the day.

This is a case in which there is a high pressure system to our northeast, not a perfect position to wedge cold air into the region, but better than Sunday. However, the ground plastic template and the air mass are a little warmer going into this event than they were Sunday.

Before the onset of precipitation Sunday, dewpoint plastic template were in the single digits in many locations. On Wednesday morning, they are forecast to be in the mid-20s, so there is not as much potential for evaporation cooling to help hold back the warming as the storm tracks to our west.

As the storm swings by, winds from the south will ultimately raise plastic template. This suggests that areas from the city eastward will warm up to above freezing quickly Wednesday morning and that the plastic template even north and west of the Beltway will rise quicker than they did Sunday and probably won’t get stuck around freezing for as long. Places well north and west of the city will undoubtedly take longer side to warm.

The Capital Weather Gang takes us through their predictions for the upcoming 2017-2018 winter weather in Washington, D. C. (Joyce Koh/The Washington Post)

Contact us at: Westlake Legal Group Your Northern Virginia Full Service Law Firm. Call (703) 406-7616 or click here for our website: https://westlakelegal.com/