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.