DC area begins road treatment as weekend snowstorm approaches


With Sunday’s forecast becoming clearer, the DC region is bracing for the possibility of snow and even freezing rain. Here’s what you need to know.

With Sunday’s forecast becoming clearer, the DC region is bracing for the possibility of snow and even freezing rain. Here’s what you need to know.

With the cold air returning Friday evening, temperatures Sunday morning will only rise to the edge of the teens. Storm Team4 chief meteorologist Doug Kammerer said snow is expected to start falling early Sunday afternoon around 3-4 p.m., giving the area “a good few inches”.

The storm will then move along Calvert and St. Mary’s counties in Maryland and across DC on Sunday evening, with rain for the majority of the region, which may knock down the amount of snow falling in the region. . Some areas may even receive freezing rain, sleet or even more snow before the system leaves Monday morning.

“I really think Sunday night is going to be awesome,” Kammerer said. “It’s going to be great looking out your window, maybe even walking in the snow or at least turning on your lights and taking the dog for a walk in the snow, but then it gets a little unpleasant when the rain is coming here.”

Snowfall forecast for Sunday’s storm. (Courtesy of the National Weather Service)

Computer models continue to disagree with the final impact of the storm. Forecasts show a sharp separation between the warm and cold halves of the storm on the Interstate 95 corridor: a right turn would bring an extended period of snowfall for DC and Baltimore proper, while a swing to the left would cause a change in rain outside northern Maryland and Blue Ridge.

Kammerer said the energy creating the “snow-rain line” comes from the Pacific Ocean, one of the least sampled regions in the world for weather. Now that he’s down, more data is being collected. In addition to temperature changes, people should expect everything from snow accumulations and precipitation totals to be different on Sunday.

“As the storm continues to head our way, we’re going to see changes in the forecast,” Kammerer said. “Even a change of 10-15 miles could be a huge change.”

Virginia prepares the roads for the second round of snow

In an effort to avoid another travel nightmare like the one experienced a week ago by some drivers stranded on Interstate 95 for more than 24 hours, Virginia took action before the snow arrived.

Road crews sprayed a salt brine solution on both sides of I-95 Thursday between Joplin Road in Prince William County and Caroline County. According to the Virginia Department of Transportation, the solution will prevent ice from sticking to the roadway during the storm, reducing the risk of dangerous road conditions while helping crews remove snow and ice.

On Friday, crews will continue to apply pre-treatment on as many routes as possible, including Fredericksburg, the Northern Neck and the Middle Peninsula. The VDOT said drivers could see delays during the day on various routes during “slow operation”.

“The brine trucks travel at slower speeds to spray the brine solution onto the road with precision and to ensure that an adequate amount is absorbed by the roadway,” VDOT said.

Once 2 inches or more of snow has accumulated, Virginia’s online snow plow tracker is activated and users can monitor road conditions as well as where snow plows are operating.

Drivers are also urged to avoid unnecessary travel due to the possibility of hazardous weather and road conditions during and after the storm. Kammerer added that with sleet and freezing rain creating icy conditions early Monday morning, expect trouble on the roads.

“The best news with this storm is the timing,” Kammerer said. “We are looking at Sunday evening to very early Monday morning. And of course, [with] Since Monday is a public holiday, there are far fewer people on the roads in the region.


Friday: Clouds in the morning and sun in the afternoon. Windy and getting colder, with highs in the 40s.

Saturday: Rather cloudy. Freezing and windy. Highs in the upper 20s to low 30s.

Sunday: Snow sets in around noon, with winter mix or rain possible after dark. Highs in the mid 30’s.

Current conditions:

Abigail Constantino and Alejandro Alvarez of WTOP contributed to this report.


Comments are closed.