Epic storm? Depends where you live in the St. Louis areawww.STLtoday.com Wednesday, February 2, 2011
ST. LOUIS • It was supposed to be a wild winter storm of "historic" proportions with predictions of devastating ice build-up followed by a heavy, nearly two-foot layer of snow.
But by most early estimates, the year storm that hit the St. Louis area Tuesday could hardly be described as epic.
Sure, the storm brought freezing rain, ice and a few inches of snow in St. Louis, a winter Midwestern blast one might expect in January.
But historic? That might depend where you live, forecasters say.
At the National Weather Service office in Weldon Spring, post-mortem questions about the accuracy of Monday’s forecasts depend entirely upon location.
"When you talk about the forecast for the immediate metro area, it wasn’t absolutely correct," said Jim Kramper, a meteorologist at the local office. "Not far west of here, we nailed it. I-70 doesn’t get closed every day."
Even what hit downtown was a big event, he said. "Getting two to three inches of sleet isn’t normal," Kramper said. "Equating that to snow gets you roughly eight to 10 inches."
As it happened, the city received 3.1 inches, mainly of compact sleet. But Old Monroe, Mo. had 10 inches of snow and sleet. Parts of Lewis County, Mo., north of Hannibal, 22 inches. Sedalia was hit with 21 inches, Columbia 17, Jefferson City 14, and Hermann 12. It was all part of the storm that brought heavy snow from Oklahoma to Chicago, where 22 inches fell.
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