This is it, you guys. The snow storm to end all snow storms (except for the other snow storms).
And with a certain snowy doom set to begin this evening, the D.C. government plans to declare a snow emergency at 6:30 p.m. this evening. What does that mean, exactly? Well, when a snow emergency for the District of Columbia has been declared, parking along snow emergency routes (mostly main roads) will be restricted to allow for better plowing. Parking along one of the snow emergency routes could mean a hefty ($250) fine along with towing and impoundment fees.
To get ready for tonight's storm, which could see as much as 12 inches of snow in D.C., the District Snow Team (a task force established between the Department of Public Works and the Department of Transportation) will be in full deployment by 9 p.m. tonight, with 287 plows on the streets. “If the forecast holds, this will be our first chance this season to tackle a heavy snowfall,” DPW Director William O. Howland, Jr said in a release. “We are ready, our equipment is ready and we have plenty of salt. Of course, if enough snow accumulates, we will plow the streets.”
Right now, the latest forecast predicts about five to ten inches of accumulation in the "immediate metro region," with a little bit more predicted in places west of the city. Capital Weather Gang says the storm will start between 7 and 10 p.m. tonight, and there's a high probability it'll change to sleet and/or freezing rain sometime tomorrow morning.
In addition to the snowy conditions, temperatures are expected to drop into the low 20s and teens. But because of the large amount of snow expected, there will be no warming buses operating for D.C.'s homeless population. But the Metropolitan Police Department says they're doing "extra outreach" to help bring homeless residents to warm and safe shelters. There will be staff at former warming bus locations to redirect people to different locations. Here's where they're going to be set up:
- Judiciary Square Area (5th and C Streets, NW)
- Union Station (2 Massachusetts Avenue, NE)
- Farragut Square Area (17th and H Streets, NW)
- West End Library Parking Lot (24th and L Streets, NW)
- Old DC Council Chamber (441 4th Street, NW)