What is a snow squall?

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CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KCRG-TV9) - A snow squall is an intense, short-lived burst of heavy snowfall that leads to a quick reduction in visibility and is often accompanied by gusty winds. A quick shot of accumulation usually accompanies these as well.

A couple of factors are necessary for snow squalls to form. Typically, a layer of very cold air will move in aloft, creating an unstable environment. In combination with low pressure, scattered snow showers will develop quickly. Snow squalls are famous for darkening sky and those “snow out of nowhere” moments.

Watch for snow squalls in eastern Iowa today, as conditions are right for them to develop.