Flurries in the forecast? What are snow squalls? Here’s a helpful list of the many terms used when snow is on the way.
“Flurries” means that light snow will fall for short durations. No real accumulation or only a light dusting is expected when flurries are predicted.
“Snow showers” means that snow will fall at varying intensities for brief periods of time. Accumulation (usually not a lot) is possible.
“Snow squalls” describes brief, intense snow showers accompanied by strong, gusty winds. Snow accumulations may be significant. Snow squalls are best known in the Great Lakes region of the country.
“Blowing snow” is exactly as it sounds–wind-driven snow that reduces visibility and can cause significant drifting. Blowing snow can be either snow that is falling or snow that is already on the ground and is being picked up by the wind.
“Blizzard” describes a time when winds over 35 mph accompanied by snow and blowing snow are expected. During blizzards visibility is reduced to near zero.
For more helpful weather terms, check out our glossary.