Monday, October 04, 2010

Winter Weather

Well, this looks like a jolly good time:

From the PI:

This winter will be cold, wet and stormy.
Forecasters are predicting severe weather thanks to La Niña conditions near the equator, and they want people to get ready for harsh winds, snow and flooding.
Either that or just flee the Northwest for warmer climates.
"If I was Southwest Airlines, I'd be advertising big-time up here," said Ted Buehner, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. "'Want to get away?'"
La Niña occurs when the temperature of the ocean's surface cools near the equator, sending ugly storms to the Pacific Northwest. Temperatures near the equator indicate this could be a particularly bad La Niña year; fall temperatures haven't been this cool for more than 50 years.
Emergency service providers are worried that on the heels of a mild 2009-10 fall and winter, Western Washington won't be ready for stormy weather.
"Everything people remember about last winter, this will be completely the opposite," Buehner said.
Forecasters are predicting a wetter-than-usual end for 2010 and a bitterly cold start for 2011. Among other examples, the region could see a reprise of the snowstorms of 2008, the floods of 2007 or the windstorms of 1995.
King County is ramping up the intensity of its preparedness campaign this fall in conjunction with several utilities and emergency service agencies. The "Take Winter by Storm" campaign for 2010-11 launches Monday.
The goal is to urge early preparation, said Puget Sound Energy spokesman Andy Wappler.
"We'd like to have people get prepared before they know a storm is coming," he said.