Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Cold Comfort: Could Have Been Worse


Variable clouds, windy, cold. We now return to our regular programming. The "Praying Mantis Storm of 2007" (see image to the right of complex low pressure system at 7am this morning) could have done much worse damage to the Washington metro area if its massive quantities of sleet had been freezing rain. Nevertheless, over 100,000 customers lost power, particularly in Prince George's and Anne Arundel Counties.

After early highs in the mid 30s (National 35°, Dulles 34°, BWI 36°), , temperatures have dropped again this afternoon toward freezing, continuing the string of every day so far this month reaching 32° or below. (The 30-year average for February is 18.5 days, so we're well on our way to meeting the quota.) The monthly average through yesterday of 26.9°, if it continued to the end of the month, would tie this February with 1885 as the 4th coldest in Washington history.

Cold temperatures for the next several days mean that the ice will be with us for a while, and there is at least the possibility of some light snow from a clipper system this weekend.

Tonight and Tomorrow

Clearing, windy, cold. Lows tonight under clearing skies will be in the upper teens to near 20° in the city and low to mid teens in 'burbville. Wind chills could be as low as zero. Tomorrow will be mostly sunny, windy, and cold, highs in the upper 20s to about 30°.

For the outlook through the weekend and beyond with Larson's Long-Range plus the latest Snow Lover's Crystal Ball, if any, tune in tomorrow for Josh's post.

Pictured: A snow blower needs assistance from some old-fashioned technology in western Fairfax Co. yesterday. In conditions like this, PM Update Central prefers the trusty ice chopper obtained a quarter century ago at Houst Hardware. By photographer Kevin Ambrose.

Capitol Climate: The "F" Word (No, Not That One!)

In our last installment of the Capitol Hill Climate Follies, 4 scientists were testifying on the Hill about the recent IPCC climate change report. Last Friday's edition of the Chronicle of Higher Education provides a review of the session, including the purported role of dinosaur, shall we say, "flatulence".

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