- The Washington Times - Tuesday, March 6, 2007

A winter storm is expected hit the region this morning and bring several inches of snow.

The National Weather Service issued a snow advisory for today and said the precipitation is expected to start during the morning rush hour and last until dark. Roughly 1 to 3 inches are expected for the District and Northern Virginia, while as much as 3 to 5 inches are expected in Montgomery County and regions to the north and west.

The storm is sweeping across the Great Lakes and will reach the coast before moving north, forecasters said yesterday.

The weather service said the snow will cover streets and that motorists should be prepared to drive in limited visibility.

The storm comes as the stubborn winter weather refuses to yield to consistent, springlike temperatures. Temperatures last week were in the mid to high 50s, but they returned last weekend to subfreezing levels with bitter, northwest winds.

“This is not atypical; this is typical” said John Townsend, a spokesman for AAA Mid-Atlantic. “Some of our worst winter storms happen in February and March.”

Temperatures are expected to remain in the 30s until they climb into the 50s this weekend and the 60s next week.

Utility company officials acknowledged this is an unpredictable time of year and that repair crews could respond to problems caused either by snow or thunderstorms.

“You basically have to be ready for anything,” said Linda Foy, a Baltimore Gas and Electric spokeswoman. “This is the time of year when you have to be ready for it all.”

The company runs several drills during the year that simulate outages caused by warm- and cold-weather storms, she said.

Potomac Electric Power Co. and Virginia Dominion Power officials said they are monitoring the weather and have plans to deploy workers immediately.

The D.C. Department of Transportation said crews began treating roads yesterday and that a full staff would be working today.

Agency officials also said crews would begin by treating major roads, bridges and overpasses, then move to secondary roads and residential streets.

Mr. Townsend urged drivers to remember that weather is unpredictable and to drive carefully.

“I keep going back to the same sermon,” he said. “You don’t forget how to ride a bicycle, you don’t forget how to swim and you don’t forget how to cope with this stuff.”

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