Yesterday I mentioned how helpful American Airlines was helping me avoid what promised to be an excruciating layover at O'Hare today. It turns out, Washington's weather is worse than even the most pessimistic forecasts:
A snowstorm of historic proportions is burying a wide swath of the Mid-Atlantic under as much as 30 to 90 cm of snow as the weekend gets underway. The Washington D.C. area is to end up among the locations hardest hit with as much as 60 cm of snow a possibility -- the heaviest accumulation to hit the nation's capital in at least six years and enough to grant the windy, rapidly intensifying system a spot among that city's Top 3 biggest snowstorms. Washington snow records date back to 1885.
It could be worse. We could be in Alaska, for example:
With all the snow in the Lower 48, it should be noted the port city of Valdez in southern Alaska has been hit with one of its heaviest weekly snow tallies ever. Snow began falling Monday and by Wednesday had totaled 1.7 m.... Additional spells of snow boost had boosted tallies to 2 m as Friday ended.
The phrase "heaviest in the last six years" refers to the February 2003 monster that stranded me in D.C. for two days:
Unfortunately, Parker and Diane are caught up in all this. They left last night for Washington to meet me there (I had to fly there because of airline fare rules, believe it or not), but only got as far as Petersburg, Va.. He seems comfortable enough, but I think he needs to get OFF THE BED. NOW.
So, I get an unexpected night in Chicago tonight, and they (I hope) get to drive up to D.C. in daylight without snowplows terrorizing them. They might have to stay in central Virginia another night, though. The forecast for D.C. doesn't look encouraging:
Today: Snow. The snow could be heavy at times. High near 29. North wind around 18 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. Total daytime snow accumulation of 8 to 12 inches possible.
Tonight: Snow, mainly before 4am. The snow could be heavy at times. Low around 27. North wind between 14 and 16 mph. Chance of precipitation is 90%. New snow accumulation of 2 to 4 inches possible.
Sunday: A chance of snow, mainly before 7am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 33. Northwest wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 30%. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.
Nor does the radar image:
I hope that Virginia finds all (dozen) of its snowplows, and I hope Diane and Parker make it safely and quickly to D.C.