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PITTSBURGH (KDKA) — Wild weather changes can be expected between now and the beginning of the new week.
Rain and some snow will zip through the area on Wednesday night with little to no accumulation.
While Thursday will be cooler, it will be mainly dry. During the evening, snow showers start to inch into the area, but most of that snow will fall from Pittsburgh points south.
While a light coating is possible in Pittsburgh, up to an inch could accumulate south of the Mason-Dixon Line with 1-2 inches possible in the ridges.
Temperatures, again, build back up Saturday only to come crashing back down Sunday. Much colder temperatures can then be expected through the middle of next week.
One of the better ways to judge potential busts, and just a good way of looking at data in a way other than what computer models show is through analog guidance. During World War II, analog forecasting, or looking back at past set ups to determine what to expect with your current weather, was right there with data-based model forecasting when it came to acceptance.
Forecasters were split on which one was better until D-Day.
You may not realize that D-Day was originally scheduled for June 5, 1944. That was the first day of a three-day window where conditions were expected to be acceptable for an Allied assault on the shores of Normandy. The story is fascinating, and you can read more about it by clicking right here.
Long story short, model forecasters recommended a wait of one day and that was the beginning of the war being won. It was also the dawn of modeling being the preferred method of forecasting.
So, is modeling the best way to go about forecasting the weather? Probably, but the answer isn’t as easy as that, as there are other methods.
— Ron Smiley 😄 (@RonSmileyWx) February 27, 2019
So, back to analog data.
With computer power, we can take the top 15 or so events that are similar to what we are seeing and forecast based on what happened in the past. Now, this isn’t the only source that KDKA Meteorologist Ron Smiley uses to forecast, but he says he does find it helpful. Analogs will often times be the first clue that model data, no matter how consistent, may be off.
Smiley says this is all relevant due to what we are seeing right now when it comes to overnight snow tonight and Thursday. While most data is only showing a dusting, analog data is showing a decent amount of snow possible through Friday. This is a set-up where we could potentially see more snow than expected.
Smiley is keeping temperatures above I-70 in the 40s range with a chance for rain and snow overnight tonight. Let’s say a dusting on grass will be possible with about a tenth-of-an-inch of rain falling from 6 p.m. through midnight. More snow in the way of about a half inch will be possible on Thursday night into Friday morning.
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