The National Weather Service calls this morning an “historic freezing rain event.” A spokesman says Boise was the hardest hit by the ice. The conditions closed schools, highways, and caused cars to slip and slide. The Ada County Sheriff’s Office reports more than 41 crashes this morning and 32 slide offs or stalled cars.
On the opening day of Idaho's legislative session, people navigating around the capitol city are experiencing a winter wonderland. Fresh snow blankets Boise, making roads dangerous for the evening commute.
The National Weather Service in Boise has issued a winter weather advisory for much of southwest Idaho. The advisory will be in effect until 8:00 p.m.
The National Weather Service is seeking input from the public on new language it’s considering for weather alerts. Traditionally, forecasters use words like “warning”, “watch” and “advisory”. But not everyone understands exactly what each term means.
So 26 Weather Service offices across the country have started a pilot program to use some new language that explains in greater detail what weather is being predicted. The program got underway earlier this month.
Weather forecasters say the current dry spell in the Northwest may turn into a dry winter. But the region’s ski areas aren’t buying it.
John Livingston is the chief meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Spokane. He says the key to the Northwest’s winter lies in ocean surface temperatures between South America and Indonesia. That’s where patterns are developing that seem to point to a warmer “El Nino” year. “It probably means maybe less snow that we would normally expect in the mountains and then definitely less snow in the valleys with the warmer temperatures.”
Boise will be without radar service for most of this week, but local forecasters say it’s for good reason. The radar unit that serves the area will be offline for about five days as part of an upgrade.
Jay Breidenbach is with the National Weather Service office in Boise. He says radar works by sending out energy and then measuring it once it bounces off precipitation. Right now, the Boise radar sends that information out on a one-dimensional plane. After the upgrade, it will do so in two dimensions.
If you thought it was warmer than usual Monday, you were right. Valerie Mills with the National Weather Service says Boise was nearly 20 degrees above average.
“The high temperature at the Boise airport today hit 108 degrees, and that was at 3:05 PM. That’s a new record for today but," she adds, "not quite as hot as we were July the 19th of 1960 when we hit 111 degrees. That’s our all-time record high for Boise.”
After weeks of sunny, warm weather, it finally rained today in parts of southern Idaho. Bill Wojcik is a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Boise. “Well this morning we had the rain falling as far west as Jerome and Twin Falls and at this time it extends all the way back to Idaho Falls and probably even into the western part of Wyoming.”