Fri March 22, 2013
Last Blast Of Winter Takes Aim At St. Louis Region
Updated 9:25 a.m. on Monday, March 25, with details on snow totals for St. Louis region.
The National Weather Service says Lambert St. Louis Airport had a record 24-hour snow fall total of 12.4 inches. At least 100 flights were canceled at Lambert on Sunday. As of 6:15 a.m. Monday, 18 departing flights have been canceled, along with 12 arriving flights.
Updated 12:35 p.m. on Sunday, March 24, with details on snow removal efforts.
The St. Louis area is currently under a winter storm warning. Daytime snow accumulation is expected to range from 4 to 8 inches. An additional inch of snow may fall early Monday morning, and parts of the region could have 10 or more inches of total snow accumulation by Monday morning.
(Go here for the Infographic: Top 10 March Snowfalls in St. Louis History)
The Missouri Department of Transportation says it currently has more than 400 employees and 220 trucks out clearing roads in the St. Louis region. Depending on the duration of the snowstorm, MoDOT says roads could be cleared by tomorrow morning.
“Our goal is to get everything cleaned up and nice for the morning commute tomorrow,” says MoDOT Spokesperson, Kara Price. “But we work with Mother Nature and if she keeps throwing more snow down we’ll just keep being out there plowing and treating.”
Price urged people to stay off the roads. But, she says, if you need to travel be sure to give trucks plenty of space on the roads.
From a mall to the museum, closures are starting to stack up. Below is a list of some recently announced closures due to the snow storm.
- St. Louis Science Center
- St. Louis Zoo
- St. Louis Art Museum
- St. Louis Outlet Mall
National Weather Service Meteorologist Laura Kanofsky says travel between 10 a.m. and 1 p.m. will be especially dangerous in the metro area.
“The snowfall rates are not only going to be high, but it’s going to cause rapid accumulation of snowfall,” Kanofsky says. “Even the best departments of transportation can’t make a dent when snowfall accumulates that rapidly.”
Kanofsky says the storm has slowed down, and the heaviest snowfall is expected to occur during daylight hours. She says there are reports of thundersnow north of Columbia, Mo.
The snow has already led to some travel woes at Lambert St. Louis International Airport. As of 9:30 this morning, 35 departing flights and 30 arriving flights have been cancelled through Sunday evening. You can check flight status here.
Updated at 6:24 p.m. on Saturday, March 23, with revised snow accumulation forecast for St. Louis area and graphic.
The National Weather Service has issued a revised forecast for a major winter storm expected to begin moving through the area late Saturday night.
Parts of the St. Louis area could receive as much as 11 inches of snowfall by Sunday night. A thundersnow could bring even heavier accumulation.
“Right now we have the heaviest snow axis lined up from central Missouri to just north of the St. Louis area,” says National Weather Service Meteorologist Scott Truett. “It looks like our first estimate is anywhere 8 to 12 inches in that zone, and if we start to get thunder in there, amounts could go over a foot really, really easy.”
Truett says they forecast some snow on Saturday night, but the bulk of the storm will hit on Sunday morning. A winter storm watch remains in effect from Saturday night until late Sunday evening.
The calendar says spring, but the weather this weekend will be decidedly wintry.
A winter storm watch is in effect for the entire St. Louis Public Radio listening area, including Quincy, from late Saturday night into Sunday evening.
National Weather Service meteorologist Jon Carney says it's still unclear exactly when the rain will change over to snow, but is still forecasting 4 to 7 inches of accumulation. There's also the possibility of thundersnow.
These late March snow storms are uncommon, Carney says, but they usually bring heavy snow.
"What we’re getting is a typical springtime kind of storm system with all the dynamics of that kind of system with all the cold air of winter," he said.
Carney's not expecting any freezing rain or sleet with this storm, but says the roads could become treacherous quickly once the snow starts falling. And because the storm will start out as rain, pre-treating the roads may not be possible.
Don't expect whatever snow falls to melt quickly, Carney says. It will remain unseasonably cold for the next 7 to 10 days.
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