Deja vu all over again

Been there, done that, shoveled out.

The snow began earlier than forecasts predicted, fell heavier than expected and now will accumulate more than anticipated. Early estimates said 4-6 inches, then 6-8 and now sit at 10-14.

A winter storm watch issued by the National Weather Service remains in effect until 6 p.m. Saturday. National Guard units stand in reserve, ready to assist overtaxed emergency crews and first responders. Road crews from the Virginia Department of Transportation hit the roads early, trying to stay ahead of the shower of white that rains down from the skies.  It is a battle they will lose.

The thermometer read 19 degrees at 6 a.m. — 10 digits above the predicted low of 9 but still bone-chilling. The high today is predicted just two degrees higher at 21.

Appalachian Electric Power’s outage map shows customers without electricity in Roanoke and Wythe Counties but — given recent history — that map will expand as the storm continues through the day.

The winter of extremes continues.

UPDATE: 1:35 p.m. AEP now reports power outages in Montgomery and Washington counties. About 135 customers dark in Montgomery, another 100 in Washington.

9 COMMENTS

    • I think the town does an excellent job given the area they have to cover and the resources they have to cover it with; only two employees and some vintage equipment. And remember that the municipal lot is a new installation to the town and no additional town resources have been added.
      This was a fairly substantial storm. I drove up from the Charlotte airport Sunday morning via I-77. From Lake Norman (Exit 33) to the Virginia state line (MM 105) the highway was often a single lane and covered with snow and ice. Quite treacherous. The NC DOT even posted messages along the highway asking people to stay home until Monday and that there was a winter advisory.
      But I took it in stride. I simply white-knuckled the steering wheel and drove slower and more carefully and arrived home safely. Unfortunately I have a steep portion to my driveway so I had to leave my Prius (which apparently was not designed or capable of handling even the slightest incline with snow) at the bottom of the drive.
      I understand that winter storms are unpredictable and really stress the town budget. This is especially true when they visit us on weekends and holidays. With the economy the way it is we need to all be more patient and understanding and be more forgiving and even lend a hand and help out. (Like the Floyd town resident that picks up trash along Rte. 8 left by the Jamboree attendees on his way to work).
      I have always lived in a small town and in small towns neighbors look out for and help each other. I believe Floyd is still a small town. So let’s all reach out and help each other.

  1. One more thing, if you will please, Doug. Please remind drivers of trucks and SUV’s, etc. to clean off the tops of their vehicles. Thanks.

  2. Excellent to hear, Amy. During the last storm my windshield was repeatedly bombarded by snow flying off the top of trucks and SUVs. Thanks.

    • There’s another option. Why not double or triple the safe following distance when road conditions suggest it? I cleaned off my 2wd truck as best I could with a long handled broom. I went out on the road for a short 5 mile trip, half of which was snow packed but easily passable for any driver with half a wit. I was putting along at about 25 mph, enjoying the scenery and comfortably vigilant regarding uphill and downhill curves and other traffic.

      Of course there are people of no wit and a 4wd was soon on my bumper. Will I go faster? Of course not, and I’m almost tempted to stop and try to have a calm discussion about stupidity. Then there is the other background noise where I resist thinking of what I will club them with if I twitch or an animal runs in front of me and causes them not to be able to react in time before colliding with my sensible self.

      The small lump of stuff remaining on my camper top was actually helpful when we reached the mostly clear hardtop. I was traveling at about 40 instead of clear weather 50 mph. The snow dust was effective in creating a safer following distance. I returned home safely with the lump intact.

      Tailgate often? I’ll guess you don’t and it’s stuff that magically crosses lanes from the opposite direction. We need a law against trees and sunshine too.

  3. Again we fail to hear from AlGore about the weather. Hey, Drive-by media, how about interviewing nobel prize winning, Mr. Global Warming about this January !!!

    • The issue that Gore raises is climate change, which the loyal opposition likes to confuse by claiming global warming is only about warmer temperatures. I’d say this winter’s weather falls under the category of climate change, even as the rabid right wing tries so hard to ignore it and confuse the issue.

      And, for the record, the end result of global warming is another ice age.

      Nice try.

  4. Actually, the town did better this storm than the last. It looked like sidewalks were shoveled and more parking spaces available along the curbs. Whether the town cleans up the snow, or private business owners chip in and hire someone to plow (which did happen this time), it is important to clear the snow asap. Winter’s are always slow in Floyd but this year winter weather is squelching the potential of commerce even more. I hope our businesses in town, that keep things fun, interesting and accessible, hang in there and can squeeze by through all of this. Another storm this Friday will probably close things down for another weekend.

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