Prepare for dangerously low temps, ice storm across Puget Sound

Dec 21, 2022, 4:36 PM
ice storm...
Just as we start to get past the dangerously cold temperatures, another hazard arrives Thursday evening; falling snow will turn to freezing rain overnight. (Photo by Brad Vest/Getty Images)
(Photo by Brad Vest/Getty Images)

The snow blanketing the region creates images worthy of a Christmas card, but it will make for some hazardous conditions over the next few days — besides the numerous road troubles that drivers have already seen.

Temperatures will not get above freezing today and tomorrow for Western Washington.

Snow stops but cold temperatures make an ‘icy mess of our roads’

“In the greater Seattle area, we’re going to see temperatures struggling to get above freezing — not even getting above freezing — primarily between the mid- to upper-20s,” said Dev McMillian, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s Seattle office. “And through the day tomorrow, it could be even a few degrees colder.”

Overnight, temperatures will get even more extreme.

“Western Whatcom County, they could dip into the single-digits — maybe a bit warmer for locations right along the water … and across the teens for much of Western Washington,” McMillian said.

This level of cold is not just uncomfortable, but dangerous. Spending prolonged amounts of time outdoors in the teens or single-digits can lead to conditions like frostbite and hypothermia. The National Weather Service cautions that exposed skin can become frostbitten in as little as 30 minutes at those temperatures, or even more quickly than that if winds are strong.

Hundreds of flights canceled out of Sea-Tac due to snow

Although this is the time of year when many holiday events take place outdoors, McMillian said this is not the night to go out caroling or ice skating. He also advises people to bring their pets inside.

“If you don’t have to necessarily be out, don’t even try to do it,” McMillian said.

Just as we start to get past the dangerously cold temperatures, another hazard arrives Thursday evening; falling snow will turn to freezing rain overnight.

“We’re going to see snow beginning to start things off, and then as conditions gradually warm up and snow levels rise, we’re going to see a transition to freezing rain overnight and into the morning commute for Friday, which could be very perilous,” McMillian said.

This ice storm will create extremely slick roads and poor visibility on the morning drive to work. McMillian said the region could see as much as a quarter-inch of freezing rain accumulate on Friday. If possible, he said, try to stay off the roads on Friday. If you must drive, take precautions.

“Definitely drive slower than usual,” McMillian cautioned. “Allow some time between you and the car in front of you.”

The snow will melt over the weekend, as temperatures make a dramatic shift. By Christmas Day, we could see highs around 50.

Local News

Seattle schools, strike, exemption...
L.B. Gilbert

Seattle Schools weighs consolidation as enrollment plummets

The Seattle Public Schools Board has a budgeting meeting at the end of January in which they detail a plan to cut costs.
10 hours ago
FILE - Bryan Kohberger, who is accused of killing four University of Idaho students in Nov. 2022, a...
Associated Press

News groups ask Idaho Supreme Court to reject University slayer gag order

Thirty news organizations have asked the Idaho Supreme Court to overturn a gag order in a case against a man accused of stabbing four students to death.
10 hours ago
Lisa Brooks

2 injured, 1 dead in DUI forklift accident in north Seattle

A crash that closed Aurora Avenue N during the afternoon commute Tuesday has taken the life of a woman.
10 hours ago
The renamed Tahuya river (Photo from Flickr @NeilHodges)...
Julia Dallas, KIRO 7 News

Washington wetlands are renamed to honor Black, Indigenous history

The Washington State Board of Natural Resources approved proposals to rename wetlands in Garfield, Mason, and Okanogan counties, to honor Black, Indigenous history
10 hours ago
(Photo from KIRO 7)...
Graham Johnson, KIRO 7 News

Seattle voters deciding on social housing initiative

Voters in Seattle are deciding whether to create a social housing program that would build homes for people with a range of incomes.
10 hours ago
Nathan Chasing Horse stands in court. Monday, Feb. 6, 2023, in North Las Vegas, Nev. Nathan Chasing...
Associated Press

‘Dances With Wolves’ actor charged in 2018 rape in PNW

Canadian police confirmed Tuesday they are pursuing a criminal case against a former "Dances With Wolves" actor who was arrested last week and charged in Nevada with sexually abusing and trafficking Indigenous women and girls.
10 hours ago

Sponsored Articles

safety from crime...

As crime increases, our safety measures must too

It's easy to be accused of fearmongering regarding crime, but Seattle residents might have good reason to be concerned for their safety.
Comcast Ready for Business Fund...
Ilona Lohrey | President and CEO, GSBA

GSBA is closing the disparity gap with Ready for Business Fund

GSBA, Comcast, and other partners are working to address disparities in access to financial resources with the Ready for Business fund.

Medicare open enrollment is here and SHIBA can help!

The SHIBA program – part of the Office of the Insurance Commissioner – is ready to help with your Medicare open enrollment decisions.
Lake Washington Windows...

Choosing Best Windows for Your Home

Lake Washington Windows and Doors is a local window dealer offering the exclusive Leak Armor installation.
Anacortes Christmas Tree...

Come one, come all! Food, Drink, and Coastal Christmas – Anacortes has it all!

Come celebrate Anacortes’ 11th annual Bier on the Pier! Bier on the Pier takes place on October 7th and 8th and features local ciders, food trucks and live music - not to mention the beautiful views of the Guemes Channel and backdrop of downtown Anacortes.
Swedish Cyberknife Treatment...

The revolutionary treatment of Swedish CyberKnife provides better quality of life for majority of patients

There are a wide variety of treatments options available for men with prostate cancer. One of the most technologically advanced treatment options in the Pacific Northwest is Stereotactic Body Radiation Therapy using the CyberKnife platform at Swedish Medical Center.
Prepare for dangerously low temps, ice storm across Puget Sound