*Winter Storm Watch in areas shaded in blue

Ordinarily, I would not post about weather, but there is an approaching winter weather system which concerns me as a traffic reporter.

The above map shows all areas in Tennessee currently under a Winter Storm Watch through Tuesday.  The Watch area “could” be expanded to include areas such as the Chattanooga metro area. A Winter Storm Watch is issued by the National Weather Service when there is a possibility of heavy snow or potential of significant ice accumulations.  The watch is generally issued 12 to 48 hours before the storm’s arrival.  

The difference of a few degrees determines if this will be an ice storm, or a cold rain.  33 degrees and we get a cold rain.  31 degrees and we get ice.  Chattanooga could see a cold rain, and 30 miles to the north or west could be on a sheet of ice.  Or the entire region could be on a sheet of ice.  Or the entire region could just receive a cold rain.  Or it could all mix together for a glorious “wintry mix.”  One of the above will happen. 

First “event” is forecasted to be some point Monday into Tuesday.  There is potentially another “event” that would unfold later in the week, perhaps Thursday or Friday. 

We have some awesome Meteorologists here in Chattanooga at “3”, “9”, and “12” who I imagine will be very busy over the next 72 hours trying to digest the computer model runs.

There is a Meteorologist out of Birmingham, Alabama by the name of James Spann.  He is, in my opinion, also among the best, most accurate in the Southeast.  Check him out on Facebook if you have a chance.  He covers the entire State of Alabama up to the Tennessee line.  Awesome info for our Alabama counties.

Chief Meteorologist Patrick Core at News 12 Now says Middle and Western Tennessee – Nashville and Memphis – will get hit “very hard” from this.  He says for anybody who has travel plans north or west next week, they should reconsider those plans.  

Case in point: Be weather aware over the next 72+ hours. This “event” will inevitably create travel issues.

Once bitten, twice shy.  January 28, 2014, Atlanta, Georgia.  A date I will never forget.