Terrible Morning Commute Expected

Well we finally got rid of the brutal cold, but now our snow chances are ramping up. Although we are very close to average in terms of snowfall, our largest daily snowfall was only 4.1” on January 18th.

Our next snow storm arrives tonight and lasts through noon Monday. This storm will be different than our other storms this season for a variety of reasons. First, we will likely see the most snow of the season with up to 6” expected.

Second, this storm will arrive at the worst time of the day – the morning commute. Snow showers start just after midnight with snow beginning to accumulate near 3 AM. Heavy snow bands with snow rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour will be possible from 6-9 AM making the morning commute absolutely terrible. As shown by the graphic below, half of our 6” is expected to fall within the three hours of 6-9 AM indicated by the shades of heavy blue on Storm Tracker.

Third, this is not going to be the light and fluffy snow that we have been accustomed to this winter. This snow will be much heavier and wetter in nature making it great for snow balls and snow men but terrible for backs.

If all of that wasn’t enough, blowing snow will also be an issue especially during the morning when sustained wind speeds up to 25 mph will be possible. There is still a good amount of finer snow on the ground which will get picked up and blown around. On top of that, the heavier snow falling will also blow around. Near whiteout conditions will be possible with visibility reduced to ¼ mile at times.

The silver lining with this storm is that it allows warmer air from the south to move in quick. Highs in the 30s could be the warmest we have seen all year.

Justin Thompson-Gee
storm Tracker 6 Meteorologist