December 11th, 2013 at 11:09 am by Greg Shoup under Weather
62% of U.S. covered in snow (NOAA)
As of today over half of the nation is covered in snow with the largest snow pack across the northern Rockies. This is about to change as another storm will come roaring out of the southern United states and may bury some areas in additional snow pack.
GFS snowfall ‘guidance’ shows the heaviest snowfall to the north
This is the GFS or what is referred to as the ‘American’ model. Basically it takes the 12 am Greenwich mean time (7pm local time) and runs it’s mathematical data and solution. It has the heavier snowfall north of Fort Wayne.
European snowfall solution shows heaviest snowfall across NE Ind
This is the “European” solution for the same time period. It takes the data from 12z or 7am local time and runs a solution. It has the heaviest snowfall Saturday across northeastern Indiana.
I will caution you when reading this data that these are single models and the actual snowfall will most likely be somewhere in between these two models.
December 10th, 2013 at 11:27 pm by Nicholas Ferreri under Weather
Another Cold Day
Heavier Snow to Our NW
A weather system will move through the area Wednesday bringing snow that will start by morning-time and continue through the daytime. Cold air remains in place and the day starts with wind chills slightly below zero as the day begins. We’ll warm only into the low-mid 20s during the afternoon (wind chills likely in the single digits) with SW winds becoming NW by afternoon. They will be gusty at times – up to 25 mph – but, not as gusty as Tuesday when our max gust was recorded at 40 mph!
Look for snow totals to vary across the area with just a trace expected south of Fort Wayne, increasing to 1.5″ in spots to the north/northwest of Fort Wayne.
December 10th, 2013 at 11:26 am by Greg Shoup under Weather
Models bring system with snow north
The forecast continues to have more of what we like to see, a consensus or agreement. Both ‘medium range forecast models’ are bringing anywhere from 3 to 6 inches of snow north on Saturday morning and afternoon. This scenario would have the heaviest snowfall south of Fort Wayne but still a decent snowfall across the entire northern tier of the state. The low is still tracking south but just a couple hundred miles to the north and we could be looking at even more snow Saturday.
December 9th, 2013 at 11:39 pm by Nicholas Ferreri under Weather
December 9th, 2013 at 12:34 pm by Greg Shoup under Weather
Possible Saturday Forecast from European Solution
The cold weather will continue through the rest of the work week but the most interesting event may be coming this week. It’s certainly not what I would call a ‘slam dunk’ forecast wise but it’s something that I begin to get concerned about when I see it. One of our forecast ‘solutions’ that we use shows a system which hooks moisture from the Gulf of Mexico.
These kind of storms are usually heavy snow makers and can cause some serious problems. That said, this is not by any means a forecast which is 100% certain, so we will continue watching and tracking it.
December 8th, 2013 at 5:47 pm by Jesse Hawila under Weather
Parts of Illinois, Indiana, and Ohio today have had a wintry mix of sleet, snow, and freezing rain. All day temperatures locally have remained well below freezing. A viewer emailed me this afternoon and said she had drizzle for short period of time. She asked, ‘how can it be so cold and still have rain drops fall?’ That’s a great question! To understand snow, sleet, and freezing rain, we have to take a look at the temperature not just at the surface but through the entire layer of atmosphere through which the precipitation falls. When the entire layer is below freezing, the snow that falls stays snow all the way to the surface. In some instances, warmer air (temperatures above freezing) can intrude aloft and create different types of precipitation such as sleet and freezing rain. Take a look at the picture below… What you’re looking at is how the temperatures throughout the layer of atmosphere are setup in a typical sleet event. There is a shallow layer of air between the surface and cloud base that has temperatures just above freezing. As snow falls from the clouds and thorough this warmer layer, the snow melts a little bit. As the slightly melted snow continues to fall, it enters another subfreezing layer of air just above the surface and becomes a hard frozen pellet that we know as sleet.
Amarillo, TX NWS graphic depicting a sleet profile.
Another type of precipitation, and one of the most dreaded, is freezing rain. This occurs when you have a rather deep layer of warm air (temperatures above freezing) above the surface, while temperatures at the surface are at 32° or colder. The image below depicts how this might look. Snow will fall and melt through this rather deep layer of temperatures above freezing. The very cold rain drop continues to fall to the surface where it then encounters the shallow layer of subfreezing temperatures at ground level. The cold rain drops hit objects on the ground and almost instantly freeze. This leaves roads, cars, you name it, in a coating of ice.
Amarillo, TX NWS graphic depicting a freezing rain profile.
- WANE: Freezing rain after falling on plant limbs
December 8th, 2013 at 11:28 am by Rob Lydick under Weather
With the potential for freezing drizzle in our forecast today and tonight, I was intrigued to read about a new index that was developed to help rate the impacts of ice storms. We’re definitely not expecting an ice storm in our area tonight, but I did find this to be an interesting concept. This index, a collaboration between Sid Sperry (Director of Public Relations, Communications and Research for the Oklahoma Association of Electric Cooperatives) and Steven Piltz (meteorologist in-charge of the National Weather Service office in Tulsa, OK) uses forecast information to rate how an ice storm will impact an area, similar to how tornadoes and hurricanes are rated on scales that help define the potential impacts. The Sperry-Piltz Ice Accumulation Index, or SPIA, rates storms from 0 (little impact) to 5 (catastrophic damage to exposed utility systems).
SPIA actively uses forecast information for ice accumulation, temperatures, and winds to rate incoming ice storms. According to SPIA’s creators, the ice storms that produce the most severe impacts are those with strong winds accompanying heavy ice accumulation because both exert stress on power lines and trees.
The Sperry-Piltz Ice Accumulation Index (Copyright Sidney K. Sperry/Steven Piltz, spia-index.com)
The new scale has been tested on storms all over the country and is now being used by a few National Weather Service offices, though not by the Northern Indiana office at this time.
Interestingly enough, when I lived in Maine, the one storm everyone talked about was “The Ice Storm of 1998,” which caused nearly 80% of the state to lose power for days. Based on the conditions from that storm, it would be classified as a category 5 ice storm on SPIA.
You can read more about this new ice storm scale here.
December 7th, 2013 at 11:33 am by Rob Lydick under Weather
Although high pressure will be in control of our weather pattern today, we’re tracking a disturbance over the Southeast that will bring more clouds and scattered snow showers into Northeastern Indiana and Northwestern Ohio for the end of our weekend. The latest computer models show a chilly start to the day on Sunday with many places in the low to mid-teens. Clouds will increase during the morning as the system to our south begins to push northeastward. A few scattered snow showers are possible during the morning hours but the best chance will be during the afternoon. Everyone will stand a good chance for seeing scattered light snow showers during the afternoon on Sunday, with the precipitation becoming more widespread during the evening.
Futurecast shows snow shower activity spreading northward during the afternoon & evening.
Some forecast models are indicating that a bit of freezing drizzle or rain/snow mix may be possible Sunday night, as well, though it looks like most of the precipitation should stay in the form of snow overnight. This is a pretty moisture-starved system so accumulations should be light. Most places will see a dusting to half an inch of snow, though accumulations of up to an inch are possible. Plan to give yourself a little extra travel time Monday morning and watch out for slick spots. Overall, it’s looking like this storm won’t have much of an impact here, though it may make things look just a bit more like Christmas!
Futurecast indicates many could see up to 1″ of snow. May be over-doing this just a bit.
December 6th, 2013 at 4:40 pm by Jesse Hawila under Weather
Shot after shot of arctic air is making its way into the lower 48 states this weekend and next week. Check out the big arctic blast moving into the country this weekend. High temperatures only in the single digits for Minneapolis and sub-zero high temperatures in parts of the Dakotas will lead into a very chilly night with some areas seeing actual air temperatures approach -30°! You read that right… 30 degrees BELOW ZERO!
High Temperatures 12/6/2013
With temperatures that cold, wind chills will be very dangerous. The areas circled in blue are under a wind chill advisory or warning. Parts of eastern Montana and the Dakotas could have wind chills as low as 50° below zero!
Watches and Warnings Across the country 12/6/2013
What does all this mean for NE Indiana and NW Ohio? The pattern is locking in to a cold one for the next week or so. While we won’t see temperatures quite as cold as those in the northern plains., we will see temperatures some 20° below average. Highs this weekend and next week will stay well below freezing with single digit low temperatures midweek. For the timing and how cold we get click here to view the forecast video and the 7 day planner.
December 6th, 2013 at 11:17 am by Greg Shoup under Weather
Futurecast for Friday afternoon showing snowfall cutting off around Fort Wayne
This is what Futurecast predicts our radar will look like in just a couple of hours with light snow basically cutting off right around the Fort Wayne area. The heaviest snowfall will continue to be south of Fort Wayne as we’ve been forecasting pretty consistently over the past couple of days.
Ending by late this evening (Futurecast)
The snow begins to taper off early in the evening and ends by mid evening.
Snowfall estimate show much less than earlier model runs.
I believe this is the best forecast I’ve seen on this particular model solution for our area as it has 1 to 3″ the farther south you travel. The biggest snows will be around Muncie to Indianapolis and south.