Updated: Sunday, 12 Feb 2012, 7:59 AM EST
Published : Sunday, 12 Feb 2012, 1:05 AM EST
HAMPTON, Va. (WAVY) - It took just minutes.
The first widespread winter blast of 2012 moved into Hampton Roads Saturday night.
It came with a surprise, " thundersnow ," caused by extremely cold air aloft and strong vertical motion in the atmosphere. While it's unusual to experience "thundersnow" in Hampton Roads, it can happen with a strong cold front or potent coastal storm, according to the WAVY.com weather team.
Road crews in Virginia Beach, Norfolk and Newport News tell WAVY.com they were out treating bridges and overpasses that could become dangerous because of the snow.
One of the first spots to see snowflakes was the peninsula, where the storm hit while many were still making last minute preparations.
"My bones tell me, at 70 years old, I feel snow today," said Rev. Roy Jones, after finishing some last minute grocery shopping. "I do believe there will be snow. Don't my bones lie to me."
And he was right. But no one expected the storm to move in as quickly as it did. Winds picked up in Hampton as the cold front swept through, bringing large flakes that measured almost an inch deep, mostly on grassy surfaces and cars.
Very few people were dressed for the weather, saying they expected to make it home before the snow started.
WAVY.com's weather team says Sunday will be brisk and cold , but sunny with afternoon highs in the upper 30s.
Stay with WAVY.com for updates.
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