CENTRAL VIRGINIA, Va. (WRIC)— So far two snowstorms have hit Central Virginia this year, and forecasters are looking ahead to predict the rest of the winter season.
In January the state’s first two snowstorms of the year brought thousands of power outages, slushy roads and downed trees.
8News Meteorologist Matt DiNardo said this year is considered a “La Niña” year, which typically means less snowfall will occur.
“La Niña is the cooling of the ocean water off of the coast of Peru, South America. That actually gives us a typically warmer than normal winter or a dryer than normal winter,” he said.
According to DiNardo, La Niña years typically produce up to 8.8 inches of snow, but we may not see that much this year.
El Niño is a weather pattern opposite its feminine counterpart, lending to a cooler and wetter season. DiNardo added a neutral pattern means nothing at all.
“I think it’s going to balance out as we get to February and March and go back to the mild trend and kind of get a little bit drier,” he said.
With more potential winter weather on the way, the Virginia Department of Transportation said they’re prepared.
VDOT said they restock supplies during and after each storm, and that the Richmond district has 66,000 tons of salt, 27,000 tons of sand and 411,000 tons of brine ready to go.
Crews also have 1,455 pieces of equipment for snow removal ahead of any possible winter weather.
Our 8News meteorologist team said they study many weather phenomena and measurements, including the arctic poles and conditions across the world to determine what we’ll see for the rest of the season.
“Those three things will help us decide what the next season or seasons will bring based on the strength of either La Niña or El Niño,” DiNardo said.