NASA-NOAA’s Suomi NPP satellite passed over the large low pressure area on January 22 at 1855 UTC (1:55 p.m. EST) and the VIIRS instrument captured an image of the massive storm that stretched from New England south to Florida. At the time of the image, the low pressure center was in the southeastern U.S. and has since moved northeast and off the coast of the Carolinas as the storm continued to intensify and bring heavy snow and blizzard conditions to the Baltimore/Washington area. By 1200 UTC (7 a.m. EST) the low pressure center was over the Delmarva Peninsula (Delaware/Maryland/Virginia).
At 5:56 a.m. EST on Jan. 23, the National Weather Service (NWS) Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland issued their short range forecast discussion with the title “Major to historic winter storm will impact the middle Atlantic to southern New England into Sunday.”
NWS said “A powerful low pressure system will bring heavy snow and blizzard conditions from the Middle Atlantic Region all the way through southern New England. The heaviest snow is expected to fall over the Middle Atlantic Region including the Washington DC and Baltimore metro areas west to the Blue Ridge Mountains. In addition, moderate coastal flooding is expected. The storm will taper off by Sunday.”
By 6 a.m. EST, many locations across Maryland and Washington D.C. reported accumulations already 1 foot, with more expected. An additional 8 to 15 inches is forecast along the D.C. to Long Island corridor for the duration of the storm.