Partly sunny skies most areas today but showers will still be around. High temps in the mid to upper 50s with lows in the low 40s (upper 30s in Newhalem). Winds from a southerly direction with gusts in the 20mph range and 30mph range in Pt Roberts later.
Sever Weather Damage 21-18 Emergency Proclamation by the Governor: Covers the severe wind and rainstorm event that began on November 12, 2021. https://www.governor.wa.gov/sites/default/files/proclamations/21-18%20-%20Severe%20Weather%20Damage%20%28tmp%29.pdf
ADVISORIES, WATCHES AND WARNINGS:
SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY IN EFFECT FROM MIDNIGHT TONIGHT TO 5 AM PDT FRIDAY for Northern Inland Waters Including The San Juan Islands. Southeast winds 20 to 30 knots are expected.
Environment Canada has issued a "Strong Wind Warning" for the Strait of Georgia-South of Nanaimo. Wind light increasing to southeast 15-20 knots early this morning then diminishing to southwest 10-15 knots early this evening. Wind increasing to southeast 15-25 knots near midnight then becoming southeast 20-30 knots overnight. Wind diminishing to south 5-15 knots Thursday afternoon then becoming southwesterly 10-20 knots Thursday evening. SR-20 (North Cascade Highway) opened yesterday at 10:00am. The Spring 2022 cleanup is complete. Keep in mind many of the Forest Service and Park Service facilities remain closed. Also, there remains the possibility of occasional snow at higher elevations along with the risk of avalanches. So enjoy, but remain vigilant for potential dangers.
SR-20 (North Cascade Highway) opened yesterday at 10:00am. The Spring 2022 cleanup is complete. Keep in mind many of the Forest Service and Park Service facilities remain closed. Also, there remains the possibility of occasional snow at higher elevations along with the risk of avalanches. So enjoy, but remain vigilant for potential dangers.
INLAND WEATHER: Look for some intermittent sun and clouds throughout the day. Showers will still be around the county but they will be widespread. Temperatures will climb to the mid to upper 50s and the winds will gradually become stronger throughout the day from a southerly direction mainly along the coast. Gusts in the Bellingham area look to be in the low 20 mph range while Point Roberts will see gusts into the upper 30 mph range or even a little higher by tonight and tomorrow. Newhalem remains the outlier due to its higher elevation so don't look for highs beyond the mid-40s while the lows will still drop into the 30s overnight. Snow levels will also drop down to below the 3000 foot level during the colder periods. As far as showers and rain, the National Weather Service continues to forecast showers and rain for the remainder of the week with higher percentages tonight and tomorrow and then again on Saturday and Sunday.
RIVERS AND STREAMS:
While not a huge increase in the river level, the rain on Saturday and Sunday will cause the Nooksack River level to visibly rise. No flooding will occur, but if you are on or near the river be aware that there could be some level and flow changes which may cause you to alter your activities. For example, sandbars which may be visible one moment may gradually be submerged by the rising level. Remember, you can always go to the Public Works website and check the river levels - https://www.whatcomcounty.us/666/Forecasts-Current-River-Conditions.
Whatcom County Coastal Weather
Weak high pressure will continue over the marine zones today. Next weather system is slated to arrive late tonight and Thursday. An additional system will move into the area from the southwest Friday night into Saturday followed by a third system on the same path Sunday. Winds: Today: SE wind 5 to 15 kt becoming S 10 to 20 kt in the afternoon. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft. A slight chance of rain. Tonight: W wind 10 to 20 kt becoming SE 20 to 30 kt after midnight. Wind waves 1 to 3 ft building to 3 to 5 ft after midnight. A chance of rain. Tomorrow: SE wind 20 to 30 kt easing to 15 to 25 kt in the afternoon. Wind waves 3 to 5 ft. Rain likely in the morning then rain in the afternoon. Tomorrow Night: SW wind 15 to 25 kt. Wind waves 2 to 4 ft.
Emergency Management Tips and Reminders
While we are starting to come out of winter, it's important to remember, the weather at lower elevations is not what you will experience at the 5000-6000' levels. Temperatures difference of 10-15 degrees or more can result in heavy rain in the lowlands and heavy snow in the upper elevations or crossing the passes. As we cross into April and May the chances for that continue to drop but a stray weather system can still result in hazardous driving conditions. With that in mind continue to be diligent. Things to be aware of:
Have your car checked to make sure all parts are in good working order. Tires should have good tread, all lights should be working, and windshield wipers should be changed if they do not provide a clean sweep of moisture on the windshield.
If there is snow on your vehicle, clean as much snow off your vehicle as possible. Windows should be completely clean for maximum visibility. Snow left on the hood of your vehicle can blow across your windshield and fog or cloud up inside due to the temperature change (another reason to clean all snow off your vehicle). Headlights, brake lights, direction lights, etc. should all be clean again to make other drivers see you and know your intentions.
Make sure you have a Winter Safety Kit in you car that contains: flashlight with extra batteries, cell phone and charger, extra blanket and clothes, high-energy food and water, games to keep children occupied, small shovel, sand or mat for traction if you encounter icy conditions, among other things deemed necessary.
If you are running your car to remain warm, remember to leave a window open to prevent a build-up of carbon monoxide.
Before leaving on a trip, call ahead and let someone know the time you are departing and your route of travel. Likewise, upon arrival at your destination, let contact know you have arrived.
Information concerning face coverings and other protective actions can be found on the Whatcom County Health Department Website.
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.