The National Weather Service is calling for 20–28″ of snow over the next couple of days, beginning around dawn tomorrow. While this is less than the December Snowpocalypse, after the snow that we got a couple of days ago and the snow that we got a couple of days before that, we’re basically all dreading it at this point. Schools are closed in the city and the county, UVA has (quite unusually) declared that they’re shut down tomorrow to all but essential staff, and VDOT has signs up along 29 declaring that conditions are going to be very dangerous, encouraging people to stay off the roads. Where things will get tricky is tomorrow afternoon and evening, when the heaviest snowfall is slated to coincide with strong winds, which will—in the words of the NWS—”make travel very hazardous or nearly impossible.” If we’re lucky, this will all come down in the form of snow, as is forecast; if some of this turns into ice, we’re headed for a very unpleasant next few days.
If you don’t have a shovel, and if you’re not stocked up on food, well, too late. If you do wind up stranded in your car, or in a house getting dangerously cold without heat, then knock on a stranger’s door and ask for help rather than freeze to death. At home tonight, round up your batteries, flashlights, weather radio, sleeping bags, candles, etc., and prepare for the worst while hoping for the best. If you’re feeling anxious, do some panic-cooking so that you’ll have some vittles while the power’s out. Bring the cat inside. Basically, expect to spend the next 3-4 days huddled around our collective internet-based hearth on your favorite local blogs, Facebook, etc. If we’re lucky, the power will stay on, and that hearth will be purely virtual.
With the last big storm, the best outlets for regular updates about the outside world came from The Daily Progress on Twitter, CBS-19 on Twitter, and The Hook’s blog, so folks hungry for information might check there for the best updates.