Editor's Note: This story is no longer being updated. For the latest forecast on Feb. 18, 2021, go here.
As millions of people in the U.S. endure intense cold and dramatic snowfall, a winter storm set to arrive in the D.C. area overnight has the potential to drop 3-6 inches of sleet and snow.
A winter storm warning will be in effect for most of the D.C. area from 3 a.m. Thursday to 6 a.m. Friday, the National Weather Service says. Southern Maryland will have a winter weather advisory. Here's a full list of weather alerts.
“This is going to be a serious storm system,” Storm Team4 Meteorologist Amelia Draper says.
Snow will move into the area between 3 a.m. and 6 a.m. Snow will stick and quickly accumulate during the early morning hours. Most accumulation will happen by noon, with snowfall rates of 1-2 inches per hour possible.
By midday, sleet will mix in with snow. Scattered pockets of snow, sleet and freezing rain will continue in the afternoon as temperatures at the surface stay below 32 degrees.
Washington and the suburbs just north and west of the city should expect 3-6 inches of snow with moderate icing accumulating on top of the snowfall. North and west of D.C., 6-10 inches of snow is in the forecast with little icing. Locations east of Interstate 95 can expect about 1-3 inches of snow with moderate to significant icing possible.
This could lead to power outages.
Avoid travel Thursday if possible.
Loudoun, Prince William, Culpeper and Fauquier county public schools will be closed Thursday. Arlington County Public Schools will have virtual learning only. See all closings and delays here.
Federal offices in the D.C. area will also be closed, the U.S. Office of Personal Management said in a tweet Wednesday.
"Emergency and telework-ready employees must follow their agency’s policies," OMP said. More details can be found here.
The wintry mix will end early Friday morning with some sunshine developing throughout the day.
It will stay cold, but sunny, for the weekend.
Stay with Storm Team4 for the latest forecast