Chuck Bell

Brief Blast of Snow Slows Traffic

A brief blast of snowfall created slick road conditions and low visibility for drivers during the commute Wednesday evening.

The snow squall was similar to what the region experienced Saturday night, with heavy winds, blinding snow, slippery roads and reduced visibility. However, Wednesday's gusts were about 30 mph, compared to 50 mph Saturday, said Storm Team4 Chief Meteorologist Doug Kammerer, and it appears most of the area only got a coating of snow, compared to some places getting an inch Saturday.

The timing of the squall was as unpleasant as its intensity. It reached Leesburg, Virginia, about 5 p.m. At 6 p.m., the heaviest snow was in Montgomery County, Maryland.

Storm Team4 Meteorologist Amelia Segal reported from the Storm Team4x4 that the squall was slowing down traffic in Virginia. In Loudoun County, roads became slushy when the snow moved through the area.

Commuters were advised to leave work early or stay at work until the squall moves out of the area.

A winter weather advisory was issued for 2 p.m. to 9 p.m. Wednesday for much of the region, including the District; Anne Arundel, Charles, Montgomery and Prince George's counties in Maryland, and Arlington, Fairfax, Fauquier, Loudoun and Prince William counties in Virginia, as well as Alexandria and Falls Church.

Also similar to Saturday, the squall is followed by bitter cold -- yes, even more dangerous than the sub-freezing temps we've already been experiencing.

Wind chills could fall to 10 degrees below zero late Wednesday through Thursday, and wind chills could make Friday feel like... wait for it... 20 degrees below zero.

A wind chill advisory will go into effect at midnight.

Amtrak will run on a modified schedule along the Northeast Corridor Thursday and Friday.

Warmer temperatures will move in over the weekend, but expect a mix of snow and rain Saturday evening into Sunday morning.

Earlier this week, a storm Monday night brought several inches of snow to the D.C. area, piling up between 4 and 7 inches for much of our area. It was enough to shut down all area public schools and the federal government.

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