In Like A Lion: Blizzards and Tornadoes

March has roared into the weather picture like an angry lion. An intense low pressure storm system, producing everything from blizzard conditions to tornadoes, is centered in southwest Wisconsin this morning. Heavy snow with winds gusting over 40 mph can be found on the western side of the storm in Iowa, western Minnesota and eastern South Dakota. The 5am CST observation from Ames, IA is very indicative of the conditions they are waking up to in the midwest:




CENTRAL IOWA
CITY SKY/WX TMP DP RH WIND PRES REMARKS
AMES SNOW 25 21 86 W32G44 29.25R VSB 1/2 WCI 7

While not as severe in terms of wind, the wintry weather extends east across the great lakes and into upstate New York and New England. A 10-20″ snowfall is expected for much of northern New England today and tonight.

On the southern, warm side of the storm, deadly tornadoes ripped through Alabama yesterday and tornado watches are still in effect this morning from southeast Virginia to northeast Florida.

Compared to the wild weather to our north and south, we are getting by relatively easy here in Maryland. Winds are whipping in from the south this morning with gusts of 45-50 mph on the eastern shore, but those southerly winds have pushed our temperatures into the spring-like 50s. Rainfall totals have been manageable, with just .91″ in downtown Baltimore, .87″ at BWI-Marshall, .59″ at the Naval Academy in Annapolis, 1.32″ in Frederick and 1.40″ up at Ed Hoffman’s weather station in Elkton, Cecil Co. as of 7am. Rain should move out this morning with mild temperatures hanging around for much of the day. Some chillier air will cross the mountains tonight, keeping weekend temperatures a little cooler.

Tom Tasselmyer

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