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Posted at 11:00 PM ET, 02/12/2008

Update: Icy Temperatures Slow to Budge

By Dan Stillman

Freezing rain and rain overnight; more rain tomorrow

**Ice Warning in effect area-wide until 7 a.m. Wednesday**

After a horrific commute, both home and to polling stations, temperatures have risen a couple of degrees in some spots but have continued to hold at or below freezing throughout the metro area tonight, while a steady stream of light precipitation -- mostly freezing rain -- has flowed from southwest to northeast, pretty much centered along I-95.

The result has been a light coating of ice on roads, sidewalks and power lines. Iciness has been worst in the northern and western suburbs, but even downtown and locations to the south and east have seen plenty of slippery spots.

Rest of tonight: Precipitation is expected to continue off and on through the night. Freezing rain will be the dominant precipitation type just about everywhere for the next couple of hours. Winds, which have persisted out of the north and northeast, should start to shift and come out of the east or southeast after midnight downtown and south and east, helping to nudge temperatures there above freezing over the next few hours.

But it may take until the early morning (5-8 a.m.) for areas north and west of D.C. (Mongomery, Fairfax, eastern Loudoun, and Fauquier counties) to rise to the freezing mark, and not until later in the morning (7-10 a.m.) for areas further north and west (westen Loudoun and Frederick counties).


  • Loudoun and Frederick counties:
  • Rest of metro area::

Most counties north and west of D.C. stand a good chance of at least a delay in the morning.

Tomorrow: Moderate to heavy morning rains (some freezing rain still mixing in north and west of the Beltway) will make for another ugly commute. Morning temperatures in the low to mid 30s should rise to the upper 30s to near 40 by early afternoon, when steady rain should diminish to scattered showers.

Not long after reaching their peak, temperatures are likely to begin falling again, through the 30s, during the late afternoon and evening as an area of low pressure developing off the Delaware-Maryland-Virginia coast causes winds to pick up out of the north (10-20 mph). Any lingering precipitation could change to snow during the evening as temperatures drop. Accumulation, if any, should be minimal -- probably no more than a dusting to an inch.

See Matt's post for the Valentine's Day forecast and through the President's Day weekend.

By Dan Stillman  | February 12, 2008; 11:00 PM ET
Categories:  Updates  
Save & Share:  Send E-mail   Facebook   Twitter   Digg   Yahoo Buzz   StumbleUpon   Technorati   Google Buzz   Previous: Alert: Advisory Upgraded to Ice Storm Warning
Next: Forecast: Stubborn System is Super Soaker


I'm surprised at the low probabilities of school closings / delays. I would think if this ice continues as forecast we'll have widespread school closings and a Fed 2-hour delay. Wishcasting, maybe...

Posted by: Mark | February 12, 2008 11:07 PM | Report abuse

Wow, schoolcast is much lower than I thought. I thought moco would have at least 2.5 apples.

Posted by: Peter | February 12, 2008 11:09 PM | Report abuse

Aw darn. Palka said that there is a good chance of school closings in the areas getting ice right now. Oh well...

Posted by: weatherdudeVA | February 12, 2008 11:10 PM | Report abuse

DCA up to 33 now, looks like freezing rain is done there.

Posted by: Ian, Capital Weather Gang | February 12, 2008 11:11 PM | Report abuse

Yes indeed, a little conservative on the closings/delays, but I'll be thanking you by doing to bed right now.

Posted by: Period | February 12, 2008 11:11 PM | Report abuse

I will be shocked if FFX Schools are not closed tomorrow. Remember high schools start at 7:15 am, buses early than that. There is still a school bus stuck on the Mixing Bowl in Springfield. To me they will go the safer route - closed or at least a 2 hour today.

Posted by: Jenn in Reston | February 12, 2008 11:12 PM | Report abuse

i like how evry1 checking for the update first are the school kids
hopefully we'll get to sleep in

Posted by: strangldangel | February 12, 2008 11:13 PM | Report abuse

The moment of truth is going to be at 6:15am tomorrow morning. Will my mom wake me up or not?!

Night everyone!

Posted by: Peter | February 12, 2008 11:13 PM | Report abuse

I just spent FIVE HOURS and 15 MINUTES in my commute home, which normally takes 1/2 hour. What a nightmare. They closed down the Severn River Bridge for hours, due to ice and a jacknifed tractor trailer. Every bridge in Annapolis was closed.

I'll think long and hard before venturing out tomorrow morning.

Posted by: science teacher | February 12, 2008 11:16 PM | Report abuse

Five hours and 15 minutes!!! Glad you made it home safe, science teacher.

Posted by: ~sg | February 12, 2008 11:22 PM | Report abuse

A friend of mine who works in DC and lives in Woodbridge just made it home.....SIX HOURS after she left work. She said the mixing bowl is a bus stuck on a ramp and a woman in labor in the back up. Yuck. Those poor kids on the bus deserve to have tomorrow off....

Posted by: Kim in Manassas | February 12, 2008 11:25 PM | Report abuse

Tysons to Centreville via 66 at 1830 was only moderately delayed. 15 min over average.

Very surprised.

Posted by: GAD | February 12, 2008 11:29 PM | Report abuse

It is PLAIN RAIN here in Arlington. It that stays up for the rest of the night... oh well!

Posted by: Period | February 12, 2008 11:32 PM | Report abuse

terps deserve school off tomorrow too

Posted by: kenny g | February 12, 2008 11:33 PM | Report abuse

It's sleeting at a decent pace here in Arlington/Falls Church.

Posted by: MoSnow | February 13, 2008 12:14 AM | Report abuse


Lucky. Employee of mine left Tysons at 1700 and got home in Centerville at 2100.

Posted by: Fairfax Rich | February 13, 2008 12:20 AM | Report abuse

If there is not a delay or closing tmw in Fauquier I'm gonna seriously doubt the sanity of the powers that be. Icicles are 5 inches long from the deck! This is by far the most interesting winter weather we've had this year. Can't remember the last time I heard "nowcasting" in effect, plus, Palka kept mentioning the "duh effect" (or something like that: It's slippery out there! Duh!) I guess when you're down to nowcasting the duh factor is a go-to ...

Posted by: weathergrrl | February 13, 2008 12:31 AM | Report abuse

Conditions outside house: deck = frozen over with a solid coating of ice. The same goes for a smooth concrete sidewalk nearby, but the main sidewalk and road are both wet--not icy. The grass feels like a yard full of kitchen knives. Temps staying around 30 degrees with very light precip (it almost looks like snow in the wind).

Posted by: mcleaNed | February 13, 2008 12:32 AM | Report abuse

Moderate rain, that generally seems to not be freezing. Temp right now is at 29F. The temps have been floating between 27-29F for the past couple hours. National radar image is pretty cool looking.

Posted by: arnoldkh | February 13, 2008 12:38 AM | Report abuse

weathergrrl, duh! lol :)

Posted by: Anonymous | February 13, 2008 1:28 AM | Report abuse

overhead i hear heavy precipitation every 15 minutes or so but it sounds like rain...will this rain freeze on contact or get rid of all the ice? i am still up with a ap psych assignment and need that extra two hours of sleep tomorrow!

Posted by: j h | February 13, 2008 3:03 AM | Report abuse

To sum up-- according to weather.coms hourly forecast I was supposed to be at 42 right now-- actualy temperature 30 degrees

Posted by: Damascus | February 13, 2008 4:08 AM | Report abuse

Federal Govt 2 hour delay!

Status - Delayed Arrival
Status - Unscheduled Leave Federal agencies in the Washington, DC, area are OPEN under a DELAYED ARRIVAL/UNSCHEDULED LEAVE policy. Employees should plan to arrive for work no more than 2 hours later than they would normally arrive, and employees who cannot report for work may take unscheduled leave.

Posted by: sem | February 13, 2008 4:23 AM | Report abuse

Hard to tell but it looks like we're approaching .25" of ice on branches. The trees are visibly weighted down. Streets seem just wet, but I only ventured out to in front of my house. Still slick spots on my driveway. Over 20,000+ pepco customers without power. Many calls for wires down comming in to ECC (Emergency Communications Center) Montgomery County 911. Downed wires and trees look to be the order of the day here in Montgomery County.

Posted by: Havoc | February 13, 2008 4:36 AM | Report abuse

Fairfax-2 Hour
PW-2 Hour
Montgomery-2 Hour

Posted by: Chase, Luray | February 13, 2008 4:52 AM | Report abuse

If the temps don't start rising soon, I see some of those 2hr delays turning into closures.what's Page doing Chase?

Posted by: Mike from the Blue Ridge | February 13, 2008 4:58 AM | Report abuse

Well, we are a lot more leisurely in making decidions. They "try" to make it by 6:15.
Last week they called it at 5:30, so anytime in the next hour.

No Valley schools have reported yet, as they start later in the day than the suburban schools.

Posted by: Chase, Luray | February 13, 2008 5:00 AM | Report abuse

We have a 2 hour delay.

Posted by: Chase, Luray | February 13, 2008 5:13 AM | Report abuse

Sort of surprised by the delay. I guess I don't really know how bad it is outside, but since last night, there is definitely a lot more ice on the trees.

Posted by: Period | February 13, 2008 6:17 AM | Report abuse

Well on the trees it looks like more ice, but the slipperiness of last night has really lessened. The rain has effectively washed away our chance of a day off. Once again, thank you NoVA winters.

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