More snow predicted this weekend
Appeal Staff Writer
Carson City residents awakened Friday to a thick blanket of snow, and the National Weather Service has predicted more will fall today.
Area weather watchers said the next storm to reach the city could share similar “lake effect” characteristics with the storm that dumped up to 12 inches in the foothills and up to 10 inches in parts of the city starting late Thursday and ending early Friday.
“Usually we’ll see lake effect snows when we get cold winter storms,” said Brian Brong, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.
Cold dry air passes over a large warmer body of water. Temperature remains at 40-45 degrees in Lake Tahoe, where it acts as a lake “source” for the snow. From there you get snow showers and snow bands, Brong said.
“How the bands came off the lake in this instance was east toward Carson City,” Brong said. “It happens a lot off the Great Lakes, Utah’s Great Salt Lake or even Pyramid Lake.”
It was the most significant single snowfall of the season in Carson City.
The National Weather Service warned the lake effect was possible again today until the storm moves out of the area this morning.
City crews were out working in the snow beginning early Friday to plow streets and fix any other related problems, which turned out to be only a few, said Andy Burnham, the city’s development services director.
“Roads were pretty slick, but the school district got kids in the buses and to school on time,” Burnham said.
The sun brought with it a fast meltdown and caused water to flow quickly into the city’s storm drains, but most of the system held up well, he said. Drain clearing after the New Year’s weekend flooding isn’t complete, but city employees and contractors continue the work, Burnham said.
One of the drain areas that often causes problems is a site used by the city for storm runoff and by Lompa Ranch for irrigation near Fifth Street. They were working on it again today, he said.
Workers will be out plowing streets or making repairs as required, and Burnham and the Nevada Department of Transportation warned people to continue planning for wintry conditions because temperatures aren’t expected to rise above the freezing mark until Sunday.
— Contact reporter Terri Harber at tharber @nevadaappeal.com or 882-2111, ext. 215.
For your information
• To report storm-related problems to the city: 887-2355 during office hours and 887-2343 after hours to report hazards.
• Road conditions: Check with Nevada Department of Transportation at 1-877-NVROADS.