Winter Storm to Hit DC Area Sunday, Monday

A winter storm arriving on Sunday puts snow, rain and a wintry mix in the forecast, but forecast models differ on snow predictions

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This article is no longer being updated. Go here for the latest weather forecast on Friday, Jan. 14, 2022.

A winter storm is set to hit the Washington, D.C., area Sunday into Monday of Martin Luther King Jr. Day weekend, and it could dump inches of snow, rain and a wintry mix.

The storm will likely start out as an all-snow event near D.C. early Sunday afternoon, then forecasting models differ on what to expect. There's a lot of uncertainty in the forecast for areas along and east of Interstate 95, the National Weather Service says.

“There’s a lot of details to be worked out here, but this will be a high-impact event,” Storm Team4 Meteorologist Chuck Bell said. “It will end as a mess on Monday.”

Until then, quiet weather rules in the D.C. area. Thursday will be dry and seasonably cold with highs in the 40s. There’s a 20% chance for some sprinkles of rain.

On Friday, highs will get into the 40s. But during the afternoon, expect blustery winds and a blast of Arctic air that will drive down temperatures.


Latest weather forecast, live radar and weather maps for Washington, D.C., Maryland and Virginia

Storm Team4 forecast: Temps return to the low 90s with rain chances this week

Trees topple due to heat and drought

People in the D.C. area are already stocking up on the necessities ahead of the weekend storm. News4's Shomari Stone spoke with shoppers.

Saturday, temps will likely stick below freezing all day long.

That bitter cold air sets up the D.C. area to get a wave of snow at the start of the winter storm.

Winter storm timing for D.C., Maryland and Virginia

This winter storm is expected to begin as all-snow early Sunday afternoon. A few inches could fall by 6 p.m.

The snow may shift to a wintry mix by Sunday evening as the rain-snow line jogs west.

The storm is expected to move out Monday morning and could leave from tricky travel conditions.

How much snow are we getting Sunday and Monday in D.C., Maryland and Virginia?

It's too early to predict exact totals, but it's very likely most of the D.C. area will see plowable snow.

Here are Storm Team4’s snow predictions for metro D.C.:

  • 2 inches: 80% chance
  • 4 inches: 50% chance
  • 8 inches: 20% chance

The heaviest snow is expected along and west of Interstate 81, and there's a high threat of significant travel delays, the National Weather Service says. Keep that in mind if you're traveling for the long weekend.

Areas west of the Blue Ridge, including the Shenandoah Valley and northern Maryland, are more likely to have an all-snow event. Snow totals in those areas could approach a foot.

Stay with Storm Team4 for updates as this forecast develops.

How to prepare for a winter storm and road conditions

Road conditions will likely be better if the storm begins as all-snow. Chemicals on the roads should be more effective than they were during the Jan. 3 snowstorm. Plus, the Martin Luther King Jr. Day federal holiday on Monday means fewer commuters and more space for road crews to work.

Take advantage of the next few days to be as storm-ready as you can. Fill up your car’s gas tank, visit the grocery store or pharmacy and prepare de-icing materials for steps and sidewalks.

Here are four tips for staying safe this winter and our guide on packing an emergency kit to keep in your car.

Stay with Storm Team4 for the latest forecast. Download the NBC Washington app on iOS and Android to get severe weather alerts on your phone.

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