Friday February 12 2021

Freezing rain this weekend.  An Ice Storm Warning and Winter Weather Advisory was posted by the National Weather Service for a broad area. This was suggested in my prior report. While it may begin with sleet, freezing rain is the main threat later Saturday into Sunday morning.

The storm is moving in and out a little quicker, so it will arrive Saturday morning. The biggest impact will be Saturday after dark until Sunday morning.

In this report, we will look at the expected timeline and totals.  The numbers are lower than the high mark the European Model showed two days ago, but it is still more than enough to be a problem.


Ice Storm Warning

Southern Maryland (Charles and St. Mary’s) and SE Virginia: These are the same areas that got a few inches of snow last night, not set to get the heaviest ice this weekend.

Winter Weather Advisory 

This includes I-95 corridor and southward.

What about northern counties in Maryland and southern PA?

I’d still prepare for some icing.  At this time they don’t reach the 0.10″ ice criteria on models. However, recent storms have ‘bumped north’ and must be considered a possibility again for Harford, Baltimore, Carroll, Frederick, York, and Lancaster.

Ice Storm and Winter Weather Advisory starting February 13



Snow From Part 2 last night into this morning.

This exceeded expectations with 4 inches or more in St. Mary’s County.  The storm track is set up to impact the same locations again.

February 12 weather snow reports Southern Maryland



Friday Afternoon Weather Map


February 12 weather storm Friday afternoon



When will this begin? 

Saturday morning. It looks light, but as we saw with accidents in Texas yesterday, all it takes is a small glaze to be a big problem.  I do NOT want to exaggerate this, but definitely treat this with caution.

10 AM Saturday

Here the NAM 3 Km model shows sleet moving past Washington and Annapolis and into Baltimore.

Freezing rain (pink) expands through Virginia.


February 12 weather freezing rain ice storm Saturday AM 10




4 PM Saturday

Sleet expands through northern Maryland and Southern PA.

Freezing rain reaches to near Rt 50 along Washington and Annapolis.

February 12 weather freezing rain ice storm Saturday PM 4


Animation During This Time Frame

February 12 weather freezing rain Saturday


Saturday Evening

Atmospheric Memory: We see yes ANOTHER Low Pressure passing by the coast between Virginia Beach and Ocean City.


February 12 weather freezing rain ice storm Saturday Evening


Animation Saturday Evening and Ending Sunday Morning at 7 AM


February 12 weather ice freezing rain Valentines Day


7 AM Sunday Snapshot

This event should be ending before noon.


February 12 weather freezing rain ice storm Sunday AM 7



7 AM Sunday Temperatures

Temperatures may be near or below freezing for a wide area, including across Delmarva.


February 12 weather Sunday morning Temperatures



How Much Ice? Compare Computer Model Forecasts

  • Yes, this is lower than the European Model showed two days ago.
  • Treat this the same.
  • *Recent trend has shown models pull back on precipitation, the ramp back up at the last moment.
  • All it takes is 0.10” to 0.25” to begin causing weigh issues on trees and power lines. When over 0.25” it id more like to lead to damage.


NAM 3 Km: Freezing Rain Ice Forecast

February 12 weather freezing rain Sunday morning NAM


GFS: Freezing Rain Ice Forecast


February 12 weather freezing rain Sunday morning GFS


Canadian: Freezing Rain Ice Forecast

February 12 weather freezing rain Sunday morning Canadian GEM


European: Freezing Rain Ice Forecast

February 12 weather freezing rain Sunday morning ECMWF




Take Away

  • This will be at least a moderate ice event.
  • Timing will begin Saturday morning from south to north.
  • Heaviest ice will be over the same areas that got snow last night into this morning.
  • Northern Counties not in an advisory now: Pay attention! Recent systems have verified north and I think this will impact you as well. 
  • This should end during Sunday morning after sunrise.
  • Expect More Advisories or Warnings to be issued north of what has been shown on the map above.


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February 11 Snow Spotter Reports Maryland NWS Sterling



Winter Precipitation

The surface air will be cold enough, while warmer air at cloud level allows for rain. This then falls into a closer layer near the surface.

Sleet: Bounces, since it refreezes on the way down.

Freezing Rain: Looks like rain, turns to ice on contact. This is actually more dangerous to weigh down trees and power lines.


Explore More: See all winter precip, more about Freezing Rain, and more winter weather terms

Winter Precipitation


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