Day begins dry but increasing clouds and the chance for rain in the low areas of the county returns. Higher elevations will see rain/snow mixtures or all snow at the ski area.
Good morning. You have reached the Whatcom County Sheriff’s Office Division of Emergency Management Daily Briefing Line. Today is Tuesday, March 3rd and the time is 9:20 am.
Information about COVID-19 also referred to as “coronavirus” can be found on the Whatcom County Health Department website. The URL is: https://www.whatcomcounty.us/CivicAlerts.aspx?AID=1617
The “Proclamation of Emergency” signed by the Whatcom County Executive concerning the storms and flooding several weeks ago remains in effect at this time. Individual and businesses affected by floodwater are requested to report damages to 360.788.5311.
Advisories, Watches and Warnings:
A “Small Craft Advisory” will go into effect this afternoon at 4:00 pm and remain in effect until 7:00am tomorrow morning.
Whatcom County Weather
The chance for rain continues for most areas of Whatcom County today, tomorrow, and into the weekend. Blaine may see partly sunny skies today but the rest of us will see increasing clouds with rain showers. Temperatures will stay in the mid 40 degree range or a little higher for the next couple of days and winds from the south/southwest now will increase later today and gusts to 30mph or so will occur in the Blaine and Sumas areas tonight. Lows will drop into the upper 30s for areas west of Interstate 5 while areas to the east will drop to near the freezing level which could lead to some ice forming where ponding on roads occurs. Look for rain/snow mixtures in Maple Falls and Kendall and all snow at the ski area where four to eight inches could fall this evening. Travel in the upper elevations could be challenging.
The Nooksack River level will start to go up a foot or a little more over the next 24-36 hours and then drop. No flooding will occur but if you are on or near the river, familiar sand bars or visible hazards could become submerged so be careful.
Coastal Weather for Whatcom County
The Coastal and Inland waters of Whatcom County will see the wind velocities go back and forth as they will subside slightly this morning and then increase again later today. Tomorrow, they will drop again to 5-15 knots into tomorrow night and then increase again for Thursday.
For the tides, today was the last day of King Tides for awhile. Otherwise, tides at Cherry Point for the next two days:
Here are a few emergency management reminders:
First, put your Winter Safety Kit in your vehicle if you haven’t done so already. Check the Washington State Department of Transportation website for a list of items to have in your kit.
Second, watch for ice and slush on the roadways especially where the temperature drops below the freezing level. And don’t forget, shaded caused by overhanging trees, mountains, or even buildings can shield the sun from thawing the frost and you could go from a dry area to patches of frost which could cause a loss of traction or vehicle control. Elevation will also make a difference as to where the freezing level is so keep alert.
Third, watch for packed snow or patches of packed snow if you are headed to the ski area or crossing the Cascades over the next couple of days. Slush or snow building up under your vehicle tires can cause your vehicle to ride on top of an unstable surface and can lead to loss of traction and vehicle control.
Fourth, keep an eye on the avalanche notifications and tree well warning. You can find information about both on the Mount Baker Ski Area Website Home Page.
Fifth, don’t drive through water flowing over roads. It only take three to six inches of fast moving water to knock you off your feet and another few inches to move vehicles as large as SUVs. Do not go around signs or barriers; they are there for your protection and going a different route will only cost you a little bit of time.
This briefing line is not updated on weekends unless an incident occurs.