Elements coming together for significant snow storm.

April 21st, 2012 at 9:58 pm by under 4 Warn Weather

As of Saturday afternoon the National Weather Service issued a winter storm watch for all of Western New York with varying snowfall amounts for Sunday evening until Monday Evening.  The NWS is comparing this storm to the one from April 2005.

Here is a small piece from their post earlier.

“IN TERMS OF HOW POTENTIALLY UNUSUAL THIS WHOLE EVENT COULD BE (ESP THE SNOW ASPECT OF IT)…NEARLY ALL OF THE MAJOR FORECAST PARAMETERS ARE 4 TO 5 STANDARD DEVIATIONS FROM NORMAL. IT IS CERTAINLY SIGNIFICANT WHEN A COUPLE FORECAST PARAMETERS ARE THAT ANOMALOUS…BUT WHEN NEARLY ALL OF THE MAIN FACTORS ARE THIS FAR FROM NORMAL…THEN THE EVENT STARTS TO RISE TO THAT OF A MEMORABLE OR EVEN HISTORIC STATURE. THAT BEING SAID…THESE PARAMETERS HAVE TO COME TOGETHER IN THE PERFECT MIX AND THAT IS STILL FAR FROM A CERTAINTY.”

The closer we get the more the models have been staying the same.  After the graphics upgrade we have a new model that allows for 1km resolution and this is what it spit out.

This is close to the NWS totals and what the NAM was showing this morning.  Later this afternoon the latest run of the NAM moved the heaviest amounts further west.

There is going to be some wiggle in the models but the general story stays the same.  This could very well be a memorable event.

http://policlimate.com/weather/current/gfs_namer_cloud.html

The GFS is showing the low deepening to 983 mb low by early morning Tuesday.  Significant to say the least.

By Sunday night the storm will start to bring in rain showers and mixed precipitation.  By Monday morning snow accumulations will be possible especially in the high terrain.  The snow showers will be heavy and wet.  With the warm spring we have already seen foliage and just a few inches of this snow can bring down tree limbs.  Widespread power outages are expected as the snow continues potentially through Tuesday morning.  As shown in the models over a foot of snow is possible in the southern tier and areas east of the city.  Some of the snowfall totals near the lakes may be less because of melting and the potential for slightly warmer temperatures causing mixed precip instead of snow.

Stay with the 4 Warn Weather Meteorologists as we update the forecast.

271 Responses to “Elements coming together for significant snow storm.”

  1. Fort Erie says:

    Thanks Bryan and Don

  2. SteveInTonawanda says:

    Thanks for clearing that up Don. I didn’t mean a ‘lab’ in the traditional sense of the word, I meant it as a term for the room(s) that you use at the studio to put together the forecast. Being that I don’t know what word you use to identify them, I used ‘lab’ as a generic term.
    It’s good to know that Bryan can keep you up to date, as he does a tremendous job in your absence, people still rely on you as the sort of ‘final say’.

    -I was joshing, Steve. A goofy weatherguy named Lloyd Lindsay Young coined that term at WWOR-TV in NY many years ago. -DP

  3. Don Paul says:

    Only part of the way through my analysis, everything I’ve been looking at has been producing the dynamic cooling associated with isentropic ascent over WNY tom’w–even the UKMET. You can see the storm hooking inland. With a somewhat less intense cyclone, one might expect Atlantic advection would bring the warming further west. But the isentropic ascent/sfc convergence/dynamic cooling byproduct seems to overwhelm that warm advection for the most part. The 09z SREF shows a drop of 3 degrees at 850 from 09z to 12z tom’w morning from about KBUF to the south. More a little later.

  4. Don Paul says:

    I have to say there seems to be quite a disconnect between the NWS zones and the point ‘n click products at lower elevations. Being a quasi-geezer, I tend to look at their zones more when I want to see what’s in the NWS forecast. My friends have a huge workload over there on a day like this, and there’s a limit to how much massaging the man-machine mix can get.

  5. Ayuud says:

    Any possibility of thundersnow with this storm don?

  6. Don Paul says:

    Here are my posted thoughts (which don’t involve accumulation totals) from FB:

    Don Paul
    After going through most available data, I have to again caution people at higher elevations that this will be a highly disruptive storm, with widespread damaged tree limbs and power outages likely. At lower elevations, the call remains quite difficult on accumulations, but some water-laden slush is likely to accumulate across most of WNY. The least snow will fall near the immediate Lk Ontario shoreline. Even just a few inches of this weighty, water-laden snow combined with 15-30 mph winds (higher near Lk Ontario) will be sufficient to bring down some tree limbs and powerlines. There will be further damage to vegetation. The precip will begin as rain overnight, and turn to snow first in areas to the SE. The change to snow should reach the metro area and Niag Frontier by dawn or shortly thereafter. The snow may turn to rain at times during the day at lower elevations, but current indications point to more snow than rain. At higher elevations, the precip will be all snow. Any mixture will be turning back to all snow by late in the day or by early evening, with some additional accumulation overnight. Meteorologist Mike Cejka will have his forecast and the latest output from our exclusive high resolution Vividcast model this evening, and I’ll bring you some updates on FB as well.

  7. Don Paul says:

    on Paul
    NWS has upgraded the Winter Storm Watch to a Winter Storm WARNING for northern Erie (including Buffalo) and Genesee Cos. , from 2 AM Monday to 7 AM Tuesday. Niagara & Orleans cos. will be under a lesser Winter Weather ADVISORY but, due to the nature of the water-laden snow, this in no way means there will be no damage in those 2 counties. As in my statement below on my FB page, more widespread damage is expected across parts of the Warning area with downed tree limbs and powerlines–with the most serious and damaging impacts at higher elevations. Confidence is now higher that Buffalo and suburbs will receive more than 4″ of snow, with hiigher amounts possible.

  8. Fort Erie says:

    why has Environment Canada picked up on any of this – no watches or warnings. I have a friend in Toronto that is supposed to take a train the NF and then a bus to Fort Erie. She has been watching the Canadian weather channel and she thinks it is going to be OK. Will there be a lot of slushy snow between here and Toronto tomorrow

  9. Connie says:

    Well, this just ruins pleasant memories of a nice, mild winter. What a shame this has to happen :(

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