IW hit hardest in winter storm

Published 10:08 am Tuesday, January 10, 2017


Of the various localities in the Western Tidewater area, winter storm Helena hit Isle of Wight County the hardest, with total snowfall measuring at nine inches by 5:30 p.m. Saturday, according to the National Weather Service’s Wakefield station.

The city of Franklin was not far behind, totaling at 8.1 inches. Southampton County received a total of 6.5 inches.

While these totals may seem high to residents used to milder winters, according to meteorologist Larry Brown with the NWS Wakefield station, they did not break any local or state records.

These are nowhere near records in terms of the largest snowfall events that have ever occurred in southeast Virginia,” Brown said. “We do not have good climatological data for these locations, the nearest stations with long-term climate from which to see what a reputable record are Norfolk [or] Richmond.”

The totals were enough to close Franklin, Isle of Wight and Southampton public schools for two days straight. Schools are scheduled to reopen Wednesday. Southampton County schools and government offices closed Monday, and Franklin’s municipal offices were also closed Monday.