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Year's first snow falls

Some areas get as much as 10 inches

Some areas get as much as 10 inches

February 13, 2006|by KAREN HANNA

TRI-STATE

karenh@herald-mail.com

Motorists and adults armed with shovels might have viewed the weekend storm with groans, but for children at Fairgrounds Park, the crunch and slickness of the season's first significant snowfall were greeted with squeals.

An adult scraping a heavy blanket of white from his pickup truck was more philosophical.

"Anything the Lord sees fit to do is no pain to me," David Weaver, 68, said Sunday as he pushed snow off his pickup truck on a side street near Fairgrounds Park.

According to a Web site maintained by Hagerstown weather observer Greg Keefer, 6.2 inches of snow fell during the storm that started Saturday.

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The storm dropped up to 8 inches of snow in parts of Franklin County, Pa., and about 10 inches of snow in Martinsburg, W.Va., according to the National Weather Service.

Todd Toth, a weather observer in Waynesboro, Pa., recorded 8 inches of snow.

Greencastle, Pa., received about half that amount, according to Robert Wertime, a weather observer there.

"It was a light, sticky snow," said Wertime, who measured 4.5 inches of accumulation.

Chambersburg, Pa., saw 4.2 inches of snow, according to Jerry Ashway, a weather observer there.

The snowfall was the season's first measurable accumulation in Hagerstown since Dec. 15, when 2 inches of snow and ice was recorded, according to Keefer's site at www.i4weather.net.

Schools in Berkeley County, W.Va., are scheduled to open two hours late today, according to Jaimee Borger, Berkeley County Schools spokeswoman. Jefferson County Schools are closed today, according to the school system's Web site.

A "fan of heat and humidity," Shannon Michael, 46, said he would rather be playing tennis.

A black Labrador retriever loped in the snow as Michael shoveled a Brookline Avenue sidewalk in Hagerstown.

Area dispatchers and police in the Eastern Panhandle of West Virginia said poor road conditions led to several minor traffic accidents.

A tractor-trailer slid off Interstate 81 in Berkeley County near exit 12 Saturday night and crews worked Sunday to move the truck out of the snowy conditions, police said.

Washington County Highway Department supervisor Ed Plank said Sunday morning about 40 trucks were operating to clear snow from the roads. Contract drivers also were working, he said.

"We're trying to get everything off for tonight because we're sure the temperatures are going to drop, and we'll have some icing," Plank said.

The forecast for this week is for partly cloudy days with temperatures in the 40s and 50s, said John Darnley with the National Weather Service. Rain could arrive by Thursday night or Friday morning, with snow in higher elevations, he said.

"With the amount of snow on the ground, the water equivalent is pretty high. It all has to go somewhere, and it's gonna go in the rivers," Darnley said.

According to the National Weather Service, the Potomac River was about 7 feet lower than its flood-stage level of 10 feet in Martinsburg, and about 5 feet lower than its flood-stage level of 8 feet in Sharpsburg.

For James Hines II, a Greencastle, Pa., second-grader, a forecast calling for higher temperatures will bring no relief. He said Sunday he was hoping for a snow day.

James hopped and tumbled over a new snowboard he got for Christmas, while other children at Fairgrounds Park got this year's first use out of sleds, snow tubes and discs.

Some adults said they enjoyed a chance to play in the snow.

Scott Sears, the father of a 3-year-old girl and 5-year-old boy, plunged down a hill headfirst on his back, then laid on the ground looking at the sky as he made snow angels.

After the plummet, Sears, 31, said he and his wife and children were enjoying the day outside.

"It's been awhile. It makes you feel like you're 10, 20 years younger, and then a little while later, your body tells you that you were wrong," Sears said.




Staff writers Dave McMillion and Jennifer Fitch contributed to this story.

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