Monday, December 02, 2013

Winter Storm Update, 12/2/13

First, I always like to show some bullet points to make this as simple as possible, and then we will dig deeper:
  • We are expecting TWO rounds of precipitation. At this time, it appears the first round comes in Thursday PM into Friday. The second wave comes Saturday night into Sunday morning.
  • Freezing rain and sleet appear to be the main type of precipitation, but snow will fall, too.
  • Just a reminder, freezing rain falls as liquid and glazes as ice.
  • Sleet falls as pellets of ice.
  • Snow... well, you always remember what snow looks like!
  • This could be a bad storm, but it will likely not be as bad as 2009's ice storm.
  • Lastly, I don't know if you will be out of school on Friday!

The above image is an animation of two rounds of precipitation that is expected to come through Region 8, Thursday night though Sunday. The TYPE of precipitation is still questionable. Many of you wonder why we can get freezing rain instead of snow. Let's take a look at the forecast sounding for Friday:
The above image is a graph that we use to see what the temperature does as you go UP through the atmosphere. Let's start at the top of the image (high in the atmosphere) where the air is BELOW 32 and snow forms. As the snow falls, it hits an area of air that is ABOVE 32 degrees and the snow flakes melt into liquid drops. Those drops continue to fall and then hit the air near the surface that is 32 degrees or below. If there is a thick enough column of air, those drops can refreeze into SLEET. If they do not have time to refreeze, they fall as liquid and freeze on contact. This forms a glaze of ice on everything and puts weight on trees and power lines. As you can imagine, we want to see sleet or snow instead of freezing rain!

To be honest, I hope the data shifts to an all rain event, but that is looking less likely. I'm not a fan of winter and REALLY not a fan of ice.

We will continue to watch the situation. Make sure you catch all of the updates on Twitter at @ryanvaughan

Take care,
Ryan

7 comments:

Sharron said...

I guess the Christmas Parade is our main concern right now. We hope that the precip holds off until about 9:30 or so. Just Saying.


Cindy Amezian said...

love this blog.....its nice to see pix and know what could happen.....Thanks Ryan! KAIT 8 IS STILL MY STATION FOR NEWS AND WEATHER!!

Anonymous said...

Thanks for staying on top of this. It gives us all time to prepair. Region 8 storm team is the best.

Teresa Webb said...

Thanks for staying on top of this. It gives us all time to prepair. Region 8 storm team is the best.

Anonymous said...

I love the blog! Thanks Ryan....I had already heard the storm was going to be like the mess in 2009.....glad I read your blog, cause I was a little worried!:)

Anonymous said...

I can take snow & maybe sleet, but , no ice please!
Like the blog!

Chip D. said...

I can follow the color changes on the map, but don't know the time line we're looking at on the changes. Is this the round coming through Thursday night or Saturday night?