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How often does it snow in March?

Monday - 3/4/2013, 4:25am  ET

march snowfall graph (WTOP/Dave Dildine)
Here's a look at the past 30 March monthly snowfalls. In most cases the totals came from single storms, according to data from NOAA and the National Weather Service. Click for a larger version of this chart. (WTOP/Dave Dildine)

Dave Dildine, wtop.com

WASHINGTON - Meteorological spring has sprung, but the that doesn't mean the threat of snow has passed. In fact, the region will be under a winter storm watch Tuesday night through Wednesday night with more than 5 inches of snow possible.

Meteorological winter runs from December through the end of February.

Factors, such as a high sun angle, warming temperatures and a retreating polar jet stream, can all work against local late season snow-lovers.

Still, snow does manage to fall during the month of March.

Washington averages 1.3 inches of snow in March.

Over the past 30 years, 15 featured no snow or only a trace of snow during the month. Of the remaining half, only four Marches saw snowfalls that brought greater than 5 inches of snow.

Dulles International Airport averages 2.8 inches of snow in March. Baltimore averages 1.9 inches for the month.

On Tuesday, March 9, 1999 a surprise snowstorm buried the Washington area in up to a foot of snow. Light snow turned by heavy snow by 10 a.m.

Most of the area school systems closed early that day. The surprise snowfall snarled the afternoon commute. Thousands of people ventured out onto snow-choked roads during the heaviest snowfall.

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