02/07/2019: "Winter Weather Ahead This Weekend"
By Brendan Cowan
There's snow and more cold weather in the forecast. This weather pattern is setting up similarly to what the islands last saw in 2008: extended cold, possibility of multiple snow events, and intermittent high winds. This is just a forecast, so we might end up with no snow, we might end with more snow, and there will likely be a wide range of impacts across the San Juans.
In 2008, some islanders ended up needing stay at home for a number of days due to impassable roads. We also had challenges with pipes that froze during power outages in unoccupied homes, causing considerable water damage with the eventual thaw.
Snow likely before 11am, then rain and snow likely. Cloudy, with a high near 36. Wind chill values between 21 and 31. East wind 5 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of around an inch possible.
Snow likely, mainly before 5am. Cloudy, with a low around 24. Wind chill values between 11 and 20. Northeast wind 14 to 16 mph, with gusts as high as 21 mph. Chance of precipitation is 70%. New snow accumulation of less than one inch possible.
A 50 percent chance of snow before 11am. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 32. Wind chill values between 11 and 20. Northeast wind 16 to 20 mph, with gusts as high as 25 mph. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible.
Regardless of how the weather unfolds, this is a great opportunity to be prepared just in case, and to remind everyone to let common sense be your guide if the snow starts to fall:
If it’s storming out and there’s snow on the roads, stay home if at all possible. Give the hard working road crews a chance to do their jobs.
Be prepared for being stuck at home for up to a week or so, and be ready for extended power outages. This is just basic island living 101. This is doubly true for those living on hills, at higher elevations, and far from town.
Keep an eye on neighbors, family, and friends who might need an extra hand. Taking care of each other is the island way.
Don’t call 911 to report power outages or check on road conditions. The OPALCO crews are amazing, and will be out working at the first sign of an outage. Refresh yourself on how to report or stay updated on outages at: https://www.opalco.com/outages/
And if you want more info about preventing frozen pipes, generator safety, or general winter weather preparedness, visit www.sanjuandem.net/winter