Wednesday, February 13, 2008

VALENTINE'S DAY MASSACRE, THE SEQUEL?

Valentine's Day Massacre, Part 2


Well, a year ago today, those of you in the Mid-Atlantic were fighting a massive ice storm that would eventually grip the entire Northeast over 3 days. Many schools dismissed 2-3 hours early, had the 14th off followed by a delay on the 15th. Are we set for a repeat? Consider the factors stacking up for tomorrow:

1. The NWS Digital Forecast Database above indicates all liquid precip will change back to snow or sleet overnight as sub-freezing temperatures return. While intermittent overall, this will make for slippery travel conditions throughout the night.
2. With dewpoints remaining high and plenty of moisture remaining on the surface, it is likely the Mid-Atlantic region will experience significant re-icing of roads leading up to the morning commute.
3. A developing low in the Carolinas will begin to pull cold air south, already evidenced by winds backing north and northwest. This secondary Low is going to inject moisture pulled from the ocean and direct it over central and eastern Maryland, just as the cold air arrives.
4. The result may be several hours of snow bursts late tonight and early tomorrow morning, with "banding" setting up on the western edge of the precip shield as the secondary Low moves northeast. NWS is going conservative, with snow amounts up to 1/2 inch, while Justin Berk of ABC2 News is alluding to the potential for up to 2" and possibly more if we see the banding develop as he indicated. Read over this Special Weather Statement in which the NWS outlines their concerns for what is to come over the next 12 hours for the DC-Baltimore region and Coastal Mid-Atlantic in general.

2-13-08 Radar


This will definitely be another "Nowcast" storm so I suggest you bookmark your favorite regional radar, and keep an eye on surface temperatures. My early call for Thursday schools is simple: Widespread 2 hour delays, with careful re-evaluation at 6:45 AM. If snow bands are continuing to redevelop and have overspread the area farther west than anticipated, it is even possible some districts in central and eastern Maryland will be forced to close. The other possibility is that the secondary Low might veer farther east and take the precip with it, shutting off any real chance for snow west of the Bay. Proof of that outcome will be a big dry slot forming where we thought precip would be, if you see that, you're going in on time because the winds will help to dry roads and parking lots before temps dip below freezing. We shall watch what happens with great anticipation, and I hope you'll post your observations into the evening as we see what the players begin to do.

17 comments:

terpguy said...

Neat YouTube:

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NlHSW78_h4M

Julee said...

I keep looking at the weather station at HMS. The temp has remained at 33 all day. Nowhere to go but ... down?

Guess I'll be taking one for the team because I won't be retiring until at LEAST 2020, when they will be BEGGING me to retire.

By the way, I am ALL about that weather widget Mr. Foot! Great addition! That and the Nowcast ... GENIUS!

photofreak65 said...

OMG!! I love how you put the BCPS hours tracker on here. How great. I always write it on my calendar - but I still think the county doesn't give us back what we deserve.

tyler said...

the temperature is currently 35.2 degrees in forest hill i have heard anywhere from 1 to 4 inches for where i live

Kyle said...

Well the ice storm was pretty much a bust for us here in Anne Arundel county. Despite decent icing on sidewalks, my wife (a teacher) was quite upset that she didn't get at least a two hour delay this morning. I'm afraid to put too much stock into this most recent storm as it seems that Anne Arundel lies in some paradoxical world that manages to avoid all the good weather. We shall see. I'm still holding out for the "big one" because the PNA and NAO seem like they're on track for just that.

Mr. Foot said...

Kyle, sorry to hear that, but perhaps it was just eastern parts of the county. I just saw on the NWS site that western AA reported anywhere from .10 to .30 ice.

And the county/state govt called delays, but not the schools. I thought that was odd.

You might be in the sweet spot for this last round of snow.

Breaking news: the one computer model that apparently nailed the Dec 5 surprise is projecting 2-3" for DC/Baltimore overnight..10 PM to 4AM the most likely time frame. Below is a quote I found on Eastern US WX forums from someone who was talking about the model earlier this evening:

"The 21z RUC correctly predicted the DEC. 5th heavy snowband that developed over the DC metro area. It was spot on with showing a band of very heavy snow developing just west of DC and swinging thru the area during the evening. That band laid down 2-3 inches in a couple of hours."

I know here in Dundalk we measured nearly 4" from that day. We shall see.. radar filling in nicely to the south and west.

snow lover said...

The radars look pretty good and the temps will be low and if any moisture will fall then the roads wont dry and that means more ice. The snow tonight will be interesting

Chip said...

Hi all, and congrats on an extra day off today. Achoo-Weather has 39 right now, at 9:10 pm, and says no snow, no way for the BCPS general area... so what's a boy to think? I bet on no delay, but I'd LOVE to be wrong! Mr. Foot, any updated thoughts? BTW, hi to Ms. Julee!

PriceW said...

just tell me were not going to have school tomrrow!

Mary said...

i agree

Kyle said...

I've been watching the temperature drop steadily from 38F at 7:00pm to 33F right now (10:15pm) in Odenton/Ft. Meade. The radar does look decently promising, as long as it continues to build up a bit.

Chip said...

Looks like too much wind, blowing away any possibility of icing. See you in school!

Grant said...

Hi Mr.Foot even though i have not been to school due to my suspension i am still interested in all these predictions you have been making. Good call last night. I hope we get 2-3" Tonight that would be awesome. Quick question Mr.Foot. Since im suspended from school do these Snow days interfere with my suspension days do you know by any chance?

playastyle said...

nah grant, they dont interfere with it. they still count as regular days of school with suspension. trust me i know man. hahaha.

Mr. Foot said...

Signing off for the night. Grant I'm not totally sure but when I see you next (depending on the weather!) we can find out.

Chip..nice to hear from you again. If no snow develops overnight, then I agree a delay is off the table. But there's that chance of backfilling on the radar in the early morning as the Low passes by. There's probably a lot of wet streets that could freeze slightly tonight, so I'm going to hedge on a 1 hour delay. Or how about this one:

Hereford: 2 hour delay
Everyone else: On time!

See you at 5:01 AM sharp!

Mr. Foot said...

Looks like the 52% majority were wishcasting for extra sleep!

Haooy Valentinues Day Everyone,
and at least tomorrow is Friday.

Mr. Foot said...

This time, the bonus day off went to places that almost never get it... the Lower Eastern Shore!
Check "Del-Mar-Va" in the closings column to find out who gets to sleep in this morning.