Saturday, January 23, 2010

Winter Storm Chatter

There have been a lot of people asking me about a winter storm or an ice storm coming so I thought I should address it.

Yes, there is potential for a winter storm moving through southeast Missouri, southern Illinois, western Kentucky, northwest Tennessee, and northeast Arkansas later this week. Models seem to be pointing at Thursday/Friday.

At this point it is purely "potential". I haven't seen enough indicators or consistency in the computer models to get me excited about it just yet.

There are a lot of questions regarding this storm.
  1. What is the track?
  2. How warm will it be ahead of the storm?
  3. What kind of cold air do we have to work with?
  4. Will there be a shallow layer of cold air at the surface and warm air above?
All of these questions need to be answered before we can determine if this will bring rain, thunderstorms, snow, sleet, or ice.

I can show you what this morning's run of NOAA's global forecast model is showing. Here is the data for Cape Girardeau, Missouri.

You can see how the model brings in snow by Thursday morning. The moisture amounts aren't that impressive. When it changes over to all snow, there is 0.275" of liquid to work with which would come out to around 3.3" of snow. Conversely, last night's run of the same model was indicating a little over 14" of snow for Cape Girardeau. This morning's run also puts down 9" of snow for Paducah, Kentucky. As you can see, there are huge swings in the models from run to run. I would like to see them settle down a little bit before I start to get excited.

Does this storm bear watching? Absolutely, but I wouldn't go out and make a run on the grocery stores just yet.


Anonymous said...

No power in lambert mo strong winds

wes said...

thanks for keeping us informed!

soso said...

How high are the winds to be expected?