Heavy bursts of snow will move through the area this morning and be out of here this afternoon. While we will have some wind gusts close to 20 mph, the snow is a heavy wet snow which should cut down on blowing and drifting snow. But I still would not be surprised for some areas to have snow drifts in the 12 to 18 inch range, especially those areas that ended up closer to 8 inches of snow.
What is really disturbing to me this morning is NOT a few of those complaints on the blog....nobody will take away all of our fun on the weather blog. I am upset about reports of the many slide-offs around the area. It is a reminder that the 5 to 8 inches snow that most of us received can cause huge problems on area roadways. I am relieved the schools are closed keeping all the kids out of harm's way. I was going to go try to work-out but I cannot get out of my neighborhood at this time. I will have to run around with the kids outside and may have to do a live-shot from my house tonight!
We have just over 6 inches of snow here on the southside of Lafayette with all the kids enjoying their snow day. WLFI in West Lafayette is closing in on 7 inches. There have been problems reported on even the main interstates because you go from very little snow to our southeast in Boone and Clinton County to an icy and snowy winter wonderland as you move just to the north and east of Frankfort. So please warn folks coming from the Indianapolis to slow it down as they drive northward because conditions deteriorate in a hurry. You can see what is causing the trouble with these preliminary weather watcher snowfall totals as of Noon today.
Earl Park 8"
You can see what a difference in a storm track can make. Instead of the storm going to Cincinnati, the center of the storm went right up to Terre Haute. The storm did not take the turn until about 3 a.m. so there was very little I could do but be at the mercy of nature. This in turn brought a surprise snowstorm to areas like Aurora just west of Chicago that had 12" of snow! A good portion of central Illinois is literally shut down with travel not advised today. This is the area that had widespread 10 inch plus snows. But you still did not have to travel that far to see double digit snowfall. Here was the final snowfall map and believe it or not Watseka and Rankin just across the Indiana-lllinois border reported 10 and 11 inches repectively.
This storm is a reminder that forecasting is a science and things do change. This is more reason to get on the blog and report the weather and tune into Live Doppler 18 since it is your only live scan of the atmosphere from where you live. The new computer system will have all new basemaps so you can see our wild weather up close. Nobody is harder on me than myself and even though we did not get the expected 10 to 14 inches, I do feel better because I kept folks out of harm's way and gave 100%. Everybody was prepared for this storm and knew it was coming which did make a huge difference. I have come a long way and no longer lock myself in my room with the shades down for a couple of days when I miss a forecast. I am sorry I was wrong this time and expected a whole lot more snow but I learned a lot from this storm, ate my humble pie, and look forward to forecasting the next storm!
Today, I can assure you I will be as optimistic as ever and be more determined to give you the most accurate local forecast available. The new computer will help with this and I will prove it to you over the next few weeks. Lafayette is a special place to live and forecast weather that is for sure. I appreciate all your reports and those who called and e-mailed me through the night. I did not even need coffee because you were so terrific and kept me going. It was quite a sight having our whole weather team together as Kelly went on the air at 5 a.m.
I was very proud of not only our weather team but our news staff that worked so hard through the night. We believe in serving you and unlike the bigger stations we do not send you to a so-called fancy automated system to get the job done with all the closings. Our station is one of a kind and I believe full of the best people in the entire country. We are WLFI. I also know that we have the best and most loyal viewers around. I cannot thank you enough for sticking by us. We take great pride in being your one and only station.
I better go do some shoveling. Thanks again and make sure to send in as many pictures as you can so I can post them here and on the air. Now I have to try to figure out how to get back to work. :)