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Posted at 10:35 AM ET, 03/05/2012

Super snow band blankets central Virginia

Radar image as of 10:15 a.m. Heavy snow is indicated by the lightest green shade. (
As light snow and flurries - of a conversational nature - fly around parts of the D.C. metro area, a narrow band of heavy snow has set up from just west of Charlottesville to just south of Fredericksburg. A winter storm warning for 4-6” of snow has been posted for that region through 1 p.m. today.

Snow totals in Albemarle county, which includes Charlottesville, already range from 4-6” according to reports from Twitter and Facebook followers. Snow should taper off there in the next hour.

Link: Snow totals from National Weather Service

Amounts are less to the east in Orange and Spotsylvania county, but up to 1-3” more could fall before the band shifts east this afternoon. Farther east, a couple inches of snow are possible in Virginia’s northern neck into southern Charles and St. Mary’s county, where a winter weather advisory is in effect.

Upper level disturbance (or vorticity maximum) at 10 a.m. this morning (per NAM model) tracking across the Virginia-North Carolina border. The heaviest precipitation usually sets up just north of such a disturbance and has done so today over central Virginia. (
Travel along I-95 south of Prince William county quickly deteriorates, so use caution if you’re traveling through central Virginia into the afternoon.

The cause of the snow is a clipper system zipping through the southern mid-Atlantic. The heaviest precipitation with such a clipper usually sets up in a narrow band just north of the track of the upper level disturbance (shown to the right). Central Virginia has coincided with this sweet spot for lift and spin in the atmosphere.

Check out our Facebook page for pics of the snow in Central Virginia.

By  |  10:35 AM ET, 03/05/2012

Categories:  Latest, Winter Storms

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