‘Significant storm system’ hits Western Washington

The National Weather Service (NWS) is warning of a “significant storm system” currently slamming Western Washington.

KIRO 7 Chief Meteorologist Morgan Palmer expects Sunday night’s Pinpoint Alert to continue into Monday.

Winds could gust up to 40mph in the North Sound with gusts over 30mph in many other spots.

The NWS is warning of 50-mile-per-hour gusts covering Whidbey Island.

Rain will be heavy in many locations but we’ll likely have a bit of a lighter rain pattern in the Central Sound around Seattle due to rain shadowing from the Olympics.

Winter Storm Watch is up for the Cascades above 1,500′ elevation for very heavy snowfall starting on Sunday but increasing in intensity from Sunday afternoon through Monday morning.

One to two-inch per-hour snowfall rates are likely with totals of one to three feet, including at the passes. Pass travel will be very difficult once the heavy snow begins.

While moisture will be more limited in the lowlands by Monday, we will have low snow levels around 500 feet so a rain/snow mix or wet snow will be possible to start the work week.

The best chances for any brief accumulation will be nearer the mountains and in the North Sound but this could occur anywhere in the lowlands.

Accumulations would mainly be on grassy or elevated surfaces and not last very long as temperatures will be above freezing. A similar change will exist on Tuesday morning but possibly more limited because moisture looks more limited too.

For Wednesday and beyond, expect milder temperatures with light showers.

Watch Chief Meteorologist Morgan Palmer on KIRO 7 for more updates.