Snow removal teams across the D.C. region are preparing for the biggest storm of the year so far.
The winter storm watch issued Monday for much of the WAMU listening area has now been expanded out west, as the National Weather Service has upgraded it to a warning in Frederick, Loudoun, Fauquier and Culpepper Counties.
For those under the winter storm warning, accumulation of up to 12 inches is expected. For those closer to D.C., including Arlington, Fairfax, Montgomery and Prince George's Counties, from 6 to 8 inches of wet snow is forecasted, along with wind gusts up to 30 miles per hour.
Preparations are already underway at the Snow Command Center in D.C.
"We're going to have, between DDOT and DPW, about 200 pieces of equipment out on the street," says Tony Duckett with D.C. Department of Public Works. "There will be plowing and salting our roadways, both residential and the mains."
The combination of wet, heavy snow and winds could bring down powerlines, according to NWS, but Duckett and his team are focused on the roads.
"We're ready — we're ready to go out there and fight," Duckett says. "We just ask everybody to be patient. It's going to take a little bit of time, but we'll get it up."
DPW teams will start 12-hour shifts beginning Tuesday night at 9 p.m. and go around the clock. The winter storm watch begins at 6 p.m. Tuesday and extends through midnight on Wednesday.
While the effects of the storm are not expected to be crippling, residents are encouraged to make sure to prepare. At least one Home Depot in Northeast D.C. was sold out of snow melt, as the March storm appears to have taken the retailer by surprise.