Sunday, November 02, 2014

Earliest snowfall for this date in Columbia, South Carolina since records began in 1886-WLTX

11/1/14, "Earliest Recorded Snowfall Hits Midlands," WLTX.com, Adam Lautenschlager, Columbia, South Carolina

"Parts of the Midlands experienced the earliest recorded snowfall in the history of the region, as some areas saw between two and four inches of snow.

"This has been a historic event," News19 Meteorologist Daniel Bonds said. "It's unprecedented. I've run out of adjectives to describe it."

The winter weather began around daybreak in some areas, and picked up as more precipitation began moving into the area. The snow was Isolated toward Lexington and Saluda Counties, with areas from Irmo to Lexington to Batesburg-Leesville reporting seeing the white stuff. Official reports are that two inches fell, but some areas saw as much as four inches.

The previous earliest recorded snowfall in the Columbia area was on November 9, 1913. Official records in South Carolina began in 1886.

To add to the bizarre nature of the event, this means that the area saw its first snowfall before its first freeze, since temperatures did not go below freezing. Ground temperatures were also well above freezing, which should have made it hard for the snow to stick to the ground.

But it did.

Odder still, we're just a week removed from tying an all-time daily high temperature, when it hit 87 degrees in Columbia last Sunday.

The National Weather Service had earlier issued a winter weather advisory for most the Central and Western Midlands until 11 am, but that advisory was allowed to expire.

Bonds says that roads could be slick where the snowfall has been heavier. The South Carolina Highway Patrol had to shut down a portion of Interstate 20 because the conditions were so hazardous.

The roadway has since been reopened.

The freak storm also knocked out power. By mid-Saturday morning, about 22,000 customers in Lexington and Saluda had no power. Much of that electricity was restored, however, within about three hours.

Daniel says any frozen precipitation should move out by late morning, and the rain should end by mid-afternoon, with temperatures struggling to reach the upper 40s."

Image: "A pic to to celebrate the Snow and the day after Halloween. Jack-Snow-Lantern," Instagram, 11/1/14

Image then published on WLTX: "This says it all: RT @T_Bell32: Snow and day after Halloween = Jack-Snow-Lantern @WLTX," via iceagenow.info 

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