COLUMBIA, SC (WIS) - Sunday night we missed out on a major accumulating band by between 50-100 miles, depending on your geographical location within our viewing area, thanks to a region of dry air that was unexpectedly pulled into the storm as it strengthened.
York/Lancaster counties and other points north got slammed with between 5"-10"+ of snow. Motorists on portions of I-85 were stranded for up to 8 hours and there were hundreds of accidents in the Upstate.
The forecast models did well in placing the upper level low associated with the storm system. We knew where the storm would pass and we expected the snow to follow suit. However, Mother Nature had a slightly different plan.
The storm strengthened faster than anticipated which ironically pulled-in dry air from surrounding regions faster than the storm could send-in moist, 'snowy' air. The result was a major snowstorm for the upstate but a barely a flake for the Midlands.
Our team of meteorologists expected this "dry slot" would set up closer to the coast, robbing only the area near the I-95 corridor and points south of snow. Unfortunately, this region of dry air worked inland a bit farther.
It was minor in the context of a 1,000-mile-wide system, but that relatively short distance made all the difference for our area, which was teetering on the edge of significant snowfall.
Reported by Brandon Lokits
Posted by Logan Smith
WISTV License Subsidiary, LCC
1111 Bull St.