weather alert

Winter Storm to Hit DC Area With Snow; 8-12 Inches Possible to North, West

Depending on where the rain-snow line falls, your neighborhood could become a winter wonderland, a soggy and slushy mess, or something in between, Storm Team4 says

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This forecast is no longer being updated. Go here for the latest weather on Wednesday, Dec. 16.

Wednesday could bring the D.C. region its most significant snowfall in almost two years.

This winter storm will bring some snow to parts of the D.C. area, but areas south and east of D.C. may just see rain.

A winter weather advisory will be in effect from 10 a.m. Wednesday to 1 a.m. Thursday in D.C. and parts of the region including Arlington, Fairfax, Prince William and Montgomery counties. Residents should expect mixed precipitation and total snow and sleet accumulations of 1 to 2 inches, the National Weather Service said. Beware of slippery road conditions. 

A winter storm warning will be in effect from 7 a.m. Wednesday to 4 a.m. Thursday in parts of Maryland and Virginia, including Winchester; Fauquier, Loudoun, Frederick, Washington and Rappahannock counties, and upper Montgomery County.

For areas east of Interstate 95, while a snowflake will be hard to come by, heavy rain will not. After Monday’s rain and another 1-2” in the forecast Wednesday, flooding is possible. A flood watch is in effect for Prince George’s, Anne Arundel, Charles, Calvert and St. Mary’s counties.

Go here to see all weather alerts.  

Crews across the region are getting the roads ready for winter weather. Shomari Stone reports for News4 on Tuesday, Dec. 15, 2020.

School Closures and Cancelations 
Some school districts decided on Tuesday to cancel classes Wednesday.

Fauquier County Public Schools will cancel classes Wednesday. Teachers may post optional learning resources online. All school buildings and offices will be closed. 

Loudoun County Public Schools and administrative offices also will be closed. All distance learning will be canceled.

Public schools in Prince William, Culpeper and Shenandoah counties and the City of Winchester will be closed as well.

Public schools in Alexandria, Arlington, Frederick County and Montgomery County will have virtual learning only. 

Go here to see a running list of school closures and cancelations


Depending on where the rain-snow line falls, your neighborhood could become a winter wonderland, a soggy and slushy mess or something in between, Storm Team4 says.

The rain-snow line is often a tricky part of winter storm forecasting. It often sets up along the Interstate 95 corridor. Storm Team4 Meteorologist Amelia Draper explains why that happens.

D.C.'s metro area is one of the trickiest parts of the forecast because it's right along that rain-snow line, Storm Team4 says.

A wintry mix will move into the area Wednesday during the morning and midday hours. In the D.C. Metro area, precipitation looks to start as a mix of rain and snow with some ice possibly mixing in. As temperatures warm heading into the afternoon hours, the mix will become all rain. So, at the beginning of the storm we may see some slushy accumulation, but that all melts by the evening hours.

North and west of the D.C. metro area, temperatures will be colder at the surface supporting more snow and possibly ice with less rain in play. There snow begins during the morning hours and will be heavy at times throughout the day. Four to 8 inches of snow is likely with amounts of 8-16” around the Interstate 81 corridor and into far western Maryland. In this area some freezing rain and sleet is also possible later in the day, especially around the Blue Ridge. This will lead to the concern for power outages and downed trees.

The southern and eastern suburbs around Waldorf, Upper Marlboro and Bowie will get mostly rain and wind will be a factor too with winds gusting 30-45 mph. We could see a few trees down and power outages as well.

Expect a blustery and raw day with wind chills in the teens then 20s.

Transportation Reporter Adam Tuss has details on the winter storm preparations.

An all-rain event is likely in Southern Maryland, the Northern Neck and the Eastern Shore.

This system exits the area early Thursday morning, with blustery winds and wind chills in the teens and 20s on Thursday. The weekend is looking dry and cold, with highs in the 40s.

Stay with Storm Team4 for the latest forecast

Wednesday could bring the most snow we've seen in two years, and road crews are gearing up for the wintry blast. Transportation Reporter Adam Tuss reports from Falls Church on storm preparations.
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