Weekends are for wintry weather

Feb. 28, 2013 @ 03:44 PM

If it seems like you’re experiencing deja vu all over again and again and again this winter wondering about snow heading into a weekend, you’re not imagining it.
Through a combination of chance and the pace of weather patterns, most storms featuring wintry precipitation in the High Point area have hit heading into or during a weekend.
The latest weather system is no exception. The central Piedmont will have a small chance of snow Saturday, though the impact isn’t supposed to be severe, according to the National Weather Service.
Most of the precipitation in the Triad Saturday afternoon should be rain, though there’s a 20 percent or less chance of passing snow flurries, said Mike Strickler, meteorologist with the National Weather Service out of Raleigh.
“This isn’t expected to cause any problems — probably just enough to wet the windshields a little bit. And it will be scattered about, not widespread,” Strickler said Thursday afternoon.
If wintry precipitation does materialize Saturday, it will continue a pattern dating back to January of snow, sleet or freezing rain taking place during or just before a weekend. Of the past four weather systems that brought measurable frozen precipitation to the Triad, all happened either on a Saturday, Sunday or leading into the weekend, according to National Weather Service records.
Strickler said that the streak of wintry precipitation on or around weekends is random. But it can tie into the frequency of weather patterns.
“We kind of go through a period, on average, of every three or four days where a storm track is pretty near by. Then it just so happens that maybe every other system is cold enough to produce something wintry, which happened to be on the weekend,” Strickler told The High Point Enterprise.
The weekend pattern means this winter has been less disruptive despite the frequency of storms, since weekends aren’t as hectic a period for overall business activity or commuting by workers.
So far this winter, the Guilford County Schools have missed one full classroom day due to weather, with two delays to the start of classes and one early dismissal.
“It helps the schools and the district overall because we don’t have to make as many decisions about canceling school. Every day and every hour that are students spend in the classroom is important,” said Cynthia Shah-Khan, school system director of communications. “This winter is very different where all the weather events have happened on a weekend or Friday, and it’s usually not like that.”

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