Wednesday, March 12, 2014

A snow day from Winter Storm Vulcan

Last night, I was hoping the college would declare a snow day.  This morning, that hadn't yet happened, so I dug my car out and drove to work.  I got there just in time for the college to close.  It wasn't a complete waste of a drive, as I needed to get my materials out of my office for tomorrow's classes at a different location.  Still, I'd rather have stayed home the entire time.  The roads were terrible and many students were unable to get to class.  Also, I needed the rest.

Follow over the jump for what the Detroit Free Press and Ann Arbor News had to write about the storm.

First, the Free Press reported Snowfall tapers across metro Detroit, but high winds, blowing snow still a problem.
Metro Detroit commuters started their workday just as a winter storm arrived, showering roads with snow and closing schools.
Motorists drove with caution along area highways as the snow accumulated. More than 900 people received help from AAA Michigan by 10 a.m. for problems including “a lot of spinouts, cars in ditches, fender benders” and more related to the weather, spokeswoman Nancy Cain said.

“We expect to be very busy throughout the entire day,” she said. “We’ve called extra people to our call-out center.”
WWJ-AM reported schools shut Wednesday in southeast Michigan, including those in Livingston, Oakland and Macomb counties, along with Detroit Public Schools in Wayne County. Other other parts of southern Michigan also saw school closings, including Kalamazoo Public Schools and others in Kalamazoo County.
Numerous communities have declared snow emergencies, including Center Line, Sterling Heights, Royal Oak and Shelby Township.
As you can read, it was no fun driving this morning.  That's what I expected, and why I was hoping for a snow day.  I got my wish, but not before I drove to work and back.

In last night's post, I also noted what could happen if enough snow fell.
If the storm reaches nine [inches], Detroit will hit a record for snowfall during a season.  I don't know whether to root for that outcome or not.
The Free Press article shows that Detroit didn't make it this time.
Detroit received 6.5 inches by 2 p.m. Snowfall is tapering off, but National Weather Service meteorologist Sara Schultz said “winds will be a factor,” with low visibility amid blowing snow.
So no record for Detroit today.  According to NOAA, we're three inches short.

While Detroit didn't set a record, Ann Arbor did, as the Ann Arbor News reported Wednesday's storm makes 2013-14 the snowiest winter in Ann Arbor history.
It's no longer just hyperbole: This is truly the snowiest Ann Arbor winter ever.

With 4 inches of snow hitting Ann Arbor during Wednesday's winter storm, Ann Arbor moved above 90.3 inches of snow for the 2013-14 season, according to University of Michigan staff meteorologist Dennis Kahlbaum. That tops the record of 89.8 inches set in the 2007-08 season.
Here is the list of the top 10 snowiest winter’s in Ann Arbor’s history, as of noon, according to Kahlbaum.

1. 2013-2014: 90.3 inches
2. 2007-2008: 89.8
3. 2004-2005: 83.9
4. 2008-2009: 79.3
5. 1981-1982: 75.1
6. 1992-1993: 73.8
7. 1977-1978: 73.5
8. 1966-1967: 72.0
9. 1884-1885: 71.7
10. 2000-2001: 71.6
Five of those records have been set this century; one more happened after I moved to Michigan.  Three more occured in the past 50 years.  As Captain Jack Sparrow would say, that's interesting, that's very interesting.

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