February 15, 2013

Is snow in the forecast for Hatteras and Ocracoke?


Will there be snow on Hatteras or Ocracoke Saturday night?

“It’s a possibility,” said Casey Dail, a forecaster at the National Weather Service office in Newport, N.C.

Right now, she said, the forecast is for about a half-inch of accumulating snow tomorrow night, but it could be a little more, depending on the timing of the arrival of cold air and the availability of moisture.

No matter what happens, though, you can expect a cold and blustery day on Sunday with temperatures in the mid-30s, northwest winds blowing at 25 to 30 mph with gusts to 40, and perhaps some minor soundside flooding.

Dail said a weak cold front will move through the area tonight and into the morning.  Then a low pressure area will form along the front offshore later on Saturday.  An upper level disturbance will move along the front, perhaps bringing more moisture in the cold air.

“The cold air usually chases the moisture,” Dail said about the Outer Banks, and that reduces the chances for accumulating moisture.

But there are still enough uncertainties in the forecast that the snow might be slightly more than expected.  That’s more likely on the northern beaches, she said, but possible on Hatteras and Ocracoke.

Right now there are no winter weather advisories or warnings for the Outer Banks, but that could change.

You can check out the latest on the Weather Service’s website at http://www.erh.noaa.gov/er/mhx/.

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