The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for the region valid from 9 PM Thursday to 9 PM Friday.
As noted for the past several days, a strong cold front is forecast to move through the region Thursday evening. This will lead to the rapid transition from rain to freezing rain, then to a sleet and snow mix, and finally to all snow.
At this time, significant accumulations of ice and snow are possible. However, the forecast is subject to change considering we’re still 24 to 36 hours from the event unfolding.
With the first transition being from rain to freezing rain, ice accumulations on area roadways, power lines, and trees will be the first hazard. This will create hazardous driving conditions and may cause sporadic power outages and tree damage, especially given gusty northwest winds.
Sleet and snow will then begin to fall onto icy surfaces, leading to immediate accumulations. This may hide the layer of ice on the road, so take caution during the Friday morning commute. Definitely don’t be this guy.
I’ll continue to post forecast changes as new information arrives. Don’t freak out just yet, but maybe get some milk and bread just in case.
-Meteorologist Jacob Wilkins