NWS: "Extremely dangerous winter weather"
With Blizzard Warnings in effect until 7 p.m. Wednesday from the Virginia suburbs of Washington, through Baltimore to Philadelphia and New York City, the National Weather Service is warning that weather conditions have begun to deteriorate. With heavy snow and winds gusting as high as 60 mph, attempts to travel could become life-threatening.
Total snow accumulations still could reach 10 to 20 inches, with windblown drifts 2 to 4 feet deep.
The entire state of Maryland is now under a Blizzard Warning! Has this EVER happened before?
Says Steve Zubrick, NWS science officer in Sterling: "I'm not sure about when the last time all of MD. was in a blizzard warning ... but right now you are in a blizzard! (or as close as you'll ever be in one.)
"Not how there are lulls interspersed with outrageous, near whiteout conditions. That's a characteristic of the random nature of these howling winds. Enjoy!"
In a Special Weather Statement issued at 8:24 a.m., forecasters at Sterling said:
"...EXTREMELY DANGEROUS WINTER WEATHER CONDITIONS THIS MORNING FOR
THE BALTIMORE-WASHINGTON REGION...THE EASTERN PANHANDLE OF WEST
"DO NOT ATTEMPT TO DRIVE THIS MORNING AND EARLY AFTERNOON. LIFE
THREATENING BLIZZARD CONDITIONS HAVE DEVELOPED RAPIDLY ACROSS THE
BALTIMORE-WASHINGTON REGION THIS MORNING.
"AT 7:27 AM THIS MORNING...A WIND GUST WAS RECORDED TO 60 MPH AT
MANASSAS VIRGINIA. NUMEROUS WIND GUSTS OVER 40 MPH HAVE OBSERVED
AROUND THE REGION ALONG WITH WHITE-OUT CONDITIONS."
The Blizzard Warning issued for Baltimore is in effect until 7 p.m.. It still calls for 10 to 20 inches of new snow before the storm ends late today. The heaviest period of snowfall will be from this morning through the early afternoon.
Forecasters said an additional 2 to 5 inches are possible this morning.
BWI has already received 5.2 inches as of 7 a.m. That means this is now the snowiest winter on record (since 1883) for Baltimore. The old record was 62.5 inches, set in 1995-96. We are now at 65.6 inches and counting.
More accumulation reports are coming in. Here is a sampling of 7 to 8 a.m. measurements:
Sykesville, Howard County: 11 inches
Jarrettsville, Harford: 9 inches
Ellicott City, Howard: 9 inches
Mount Airy, Carroll: 8.5 inches
Long Green, Baltimore: 7.8 inches
Camp Springs, Prince George's: 7.1 inches
Bel Air, Harford: 6.5 inches
Columbia, Howard: 6.1 inches
Crofton, Anne Arundel: 5.5 inches
(SUN PHOTO/Frank Roylance/Whiteout in Cockeysville)