These Daily Briefings on Incidents, Advisories, Watches and Warnings, current weather and Emergency Management tips are published Monday through Friday, as well as during times of increased awareness or actual events.
The U.S. and Canada have extended an order closing their shared border to nonessential traffic. The move delays the border’s reopening by another 30 days, until at least November 21, 2020. This includes both vehicular traffic as well as recreational boating between the countries.
The “Proclamation of Emergency” signed by the Whatcom County Executive concerning COVID-19 remains in effect. Information about Whatcom County’s response to COVID-19 is available at the Joint Information Center’s COVID-19 website.
Whatcom County is in Phase 2 of the Washington Safe Start Plan. Highlights of this phase include: social distancing, wearing a mask, and limiting the size of groups are the guidelines of Phase 2. More info about Phase 2 in Whatcom County can be found here, and updates can be found here.
Washington state has implemented a cloth mask mandate requiring the wearing of a mask in public indoors and wherever a social distance of six feet cannot be maintained outdoors. More info can be found here and here.
Advisories, Watches and Warnings:
There are no advisories, watches or warnings for our area at this time. However, due to colder temperatures in the evening frost or even some frozen ice on the roadways is possible. Drive cautiously.
Whatcom County Weather
The chance for showers will gradually diminish as the day progresses. Temperatures will not change much with highs topping out in the mid-40s with cooler temperatures in the foothills. Tonight will be partly cloudy with lows in the upper 20s to mid 30s depending on where you live. Colder temperatures will be in the higher elevations. Tomorrow will be partly sunny with highs about five degrees cooler than today. Lows tomorrow night will be about the same as tonight. Winds will be on the lighter side somewhere between 5-15 mph; the will be from the north and east soit will feel a little cooler than the outside temperature. And rain returns on Thursday.
Rivers and Streams
As far as the Nooksack River level goes we will see the level come up a little from the rain on Thursday but it will not cause any problems in terms of flooding. Remember though, the ground becomes more saturated with each rain even and its ability to absorb new moisture diminishes. When we do see a heavy rain event, it won’t take a lot to cause rivers and streams to rise due to runoff. Now is the time to look at what alternate routes are available and how much additional time you will need for your travel to and from your destination.
Coastal Weather for Whatcom County
Look for wind from the west today switching to the north later. Wind speed will be 10 knots or less. Tonight, wind velocities will increase to 5-15 knots with wind waves of two feet or less. Tomorrow winds will switch to the East and be between10 and 20 knots with wind waves one to three feet. Winds on Thursday will pick up when the next weather system enters the area. One other thing to keep in mind is that we are expecting King Tides from November 16th through the 20th. We will see some days during this period with tides above the 10.0’ level.
Here are a few emergency management reminders:
COVID-19: Everyone in Washington State, including Whatcom County, is directed to wear a face covering while at any indoor public space and any outdoor public space where you may be within 6 feet of someone who does not live with you. You can find more info about face coverings and other protective actions here and here.
If you haven't put your Winter Emergency kit in your car, now is the time to do so. Having an extra blanket, flashlight, small shovel, food and water are just a few of the items you should consider placing in your kit. The Washington State Department of Transportation has a list of items that you should consider having in your emergency kit.
Check your windshield wipers now and replace them if they are frayed, leave streaks, or not able to remove water from your windshield. Your safety and the safety of others depends on your ability to clearly see the road and other traffic on the road.
Make sure you turn your lights on during time of reduced visibility; this includes dusk, twilight, fog, and rain. The more you make yourself visible, the less chance of an accident.
Do not attempt to drive through water flowing over the road or even water standing on the road. Flowing water can move vehicles in as little as six inches of water and even SUVs cannot escape the force of flowing water. Likewise, driving through standing water while guessing where the road is could result in veering off the road. By going a different route, you may lose ten or fifteen minutes, but you will arrive safe.
Frost on roads and bridges can occur anytime. Colder temperatures at higher elevations can cause frost or black ice to form on roads and bridges. Wind can create wind chills that drop temperatures below freezing.
Scrape the ice and snow from all the windows on your vehicle. And if you have snow on the hood, remove that to. Snow blowing across a warm windshield will cause condensation and restrict your visibility.
This briefing line is not updated on weekends unless an incident occurs.