Storm Team 9 Explains: Late Snow Arrival - Greenville, NC | News | Weather | Sports - WNCT.com

Storm Team 9 Explains: Late Snow Arrival

Posted: Updated:
Yes, the snow finally arrived and covered eastern North Carolina  Tuesday night into Wednesday.  However, this winter storm threw a couple of curve balls leaving snow-lovers asking, “Where’s the snow?”.  Storm Team 9 explains what happened.

The onset of the expected precipitation was delayed for a couple of significant reasons.  The computer forecast models predicted the precipitation to begin around 7 AM near the coast and overspread the entire Coastal Plain of North Carolina by lunchtime.  The early morning precipitation began on schedule.  However, as the moisture worked inland, it encountered MUCH drier air than expected.  As a result, the falling precipitation continued to dry up before reaching the ground.  It took a much longer time to saturate the atmosphere over eastern North Carolina to allow precipitation to reach the ground.

Next, the Arctic air was in place over the WNCT-TV 9 viewing area, allowing temperatures to be at or below freezing.  Therefore, as the precipitation began reaching the ground, it froze into either sleet or ice.  To further add complexity to the forecast, Storm Team 9 correctly predicted a batch of warmer air to move in near the cloud level for a period of time.  This fact caused the winter storm’s precipitation to melt and fall as rain before refreezing into ice pellets (sleet) or freezing rain (ice) once it hit the sub-freezing surfaces in eastern North Carolina.  Once again, the computer forecast models predicted this “warm air intrusion” to move out by the afternoon hours and transition a period of sleet and freezing rain to all snow before evening.  However, this warm air was unusually difficult to move this time.  As a result, it took MUCH longer for the sleet and freezing rain to transition to snow.

As eastern North Carolinians observed through Tuesday night or awakened on Wednesday, indeed your Storm Team 9 forecast finally verified and met the expected accumulations of 4 to 8 inches inland and 2 to 5 inches closer to the coast.  For many, it was a beautiful winter wonderland with a healthy blanket of snow.  Although it was a very challenging forecast, Storm Team 9 was very pleased with end result, making snow-lovers very happy in the East!
  • Extreme WeatherMore>>

  • Crews make gains on 2 California wildfires

    Crews make gains on 2 California wildfires

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 2:50 PM EDT2014-07-29 18:50:45 GMT
    Most of the 1,200 people driven to evacuate by a Northern California wildfire that destroyed 13 homes have been told they can safely return after a series of steady gains in the firefight.
    Some firefighters battling a Northern California wildfire that prompted evacuation orders for more than 400 homes before it was brought under control were dispatched to other fires, while evacuation orders for about half...
  • Strong quake shakes Mexico's Gulf coast

    Strong quake shakes Mexico's Gulf coast

    Tuesday, July 29 2014 11:14 AM EDT2014-07-29 15:14:38 GMT
    A strong earthquake has shaken eastern Mexico, but there are no immediate reports of damage or injury.
    A strong earthquake shook much of eastern Mexico on Tuesday, but there were no reports of damage or injury.
  • Correction: California Wildfires story

    Correction: California Wildfires story

    Monday, July 28 2014 8:35 PM EDT2014-07-29 00:35:35 GMT
    Fire crews were battling two fast-moving wildfires in California that threatened many homes and forced hundreds of evacuations, officials said.
    In a story July 27 about California Wildfires, The Associated Press reported erroneously that the type of aircraft assisting firefighters battling a wildfire outside Yosemite National Park. They were fixed-wing airplanes...
Powered by WorldNow

3221 South Evans Street
Greenville N.C. 27834

Telephone: 252.355.8500
Fax: 252.355.8568
Email: newsdesk@wnct.com

Can't find something?
Powered by WorldNow
All content © Copyright 2000 - 2014 Media General Communications Holdings, LLC. A Media General Company.