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Winter Storm Timeline: Ellicott City Could Receive 9 Inches of Snow

A breakdown of the next 24 hours as a winter storm hits the region.

Main Street bridge after a December 2013 snow storm. Credit: Andrew Metcalf
Main Street bridge after a December 2013 snow storm. Credit: Andrew Metcalf

And so it begins. Tuesday morning snow started to fall in eastern Howard County around 9 a.m.

The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning through 11 p.m. on Wednesday. The weather service predicts about five to nine inches of snow to fall in the county.

Howard County Public Schools were already closed for students Tuesday due to a staff professional day. On Tuesday morning the school system closed schools for staff and canceled all afternoon and evening activities due to the weather.

The Howard County government allowed its employees to take a liberal leave Tuesday.

The National Weather Service also issued a wind chill advisory from 6 p.m. until noon on Wednesday. Bitter winds are expected to follow the snow storm, with wind chill values dropping as low as -13 on Wednesday.

Storm Timeline:

9 a.m. Tuesday: Snow begins. The snow is expected to accumulate throughout the day as the temperature falls from a high of 28 to about 15 degrees with wind speeds between 11 and 15 mph. Between 9 a.m. and 9 p.m. the area is expected to get between 5 and 9 inches of snow.

Midday Tuesday: The heaviest snow is expected to fall during this time. Visibility is expected to be reduced to less than a half mile. The National Weather Service reports, "traveling will become dangerous today."

9 p.m. Tuesday: Snow should stop and high winds will begin to strike the area. Wind speeds are expected between 20 to 22 mph, with 40 mph gusts overnight. Less than an inch of snow is predicted to fall overnight. The weather service warns if you must travel outside, to wear a hat and gloves as hypothermia and frostbite can occur quickly. The nighttime low is predicted to be 5 degrees.

Wednesday morning: Winds will begin to taper off at this time. Wind speeds are predicted to drop to around 11 to 18 mph, with gusts as high as 31 mph. A high near 16 degrees is predicted.

Wednesday night: By this point the cold begins in earnest. Wind chill values are expected to drop to as low as -8, while the low is predicted to be around 5 degrees.

Rest of the week: Bitter temperatures will continue until Saturday. Thursday is expected to reach a high of 18, with a low of 7 at night. Friday is predicted to be sunny with a high near 17 and low around 12. On Saturday temperatures will rise to just below freezing, 30 degrees.

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