It could have been much worse

In retrospect the late autumn storm that dumped one to two feet of snow on Southwestern Virginia could have been much worse for Floyd County.

Downtown Floyd on Saturday afternoon

Clogged roads in many parts of the region trapped drivers and passengers in their cares. Not so here.

Roanoke, it appears, got more snow than most parts of Floyd County.

Still, the snow will be with us for a while. Temperatures today will not climb above freezing. Many roads in the county remain untouched by snow plows. Winds could add to snow drifts.

Appalachian Electric Power (AEP) says 43,200 homes in Southwestern Virginia are without power (as of 8 a.m. today). Of those, 1,100 are in Floyd County.

Temperatures are expected to climb into the 40s on Tuesday and the high 30s on Wednesday before another storm with some “icy mix” moves into the area on Wednesday night.

While this storm has moved on, we may be in for a rough winter.

Writes Roanoke Times weather blogger Kevin Myatt:

By and large, over our weather history, major snowstorms are not loners. They are usually part of winters that include more than one significant to major winter storm. It’s not common to get two foot-plus snowstorms in a single winter, but it has happened, in years like 1960 and 1996. More often, a major snowstorm is clustered with some lesser but still pretty big snows (the 4-8 and 6-12 varieties) and some ice and mixed storms. Large “Miller A” winter storms — like the one we just experienced, forming in the Gulf of Mexico and riding up the East Coast — are the product of a certain atmospheric pattern. That pattern can show up for a brief window to produce a monster, but more often than not, that pattern — high pressure blocking near Greeland, deep jet dip in the East — is either persistent or frequently recurring, and leads to other similar winter storms.

Welcome to winter.

UPDATED AT 11:00 a.m. with new totals on power outages.

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