Another Round of Icy Weather Spells More Trouble
We began this week with extended periods of freezing rain yielding widespread power outages across the Deep South and now we end this week with much the same in the forecast.
Take a look at the map below. It doesn’t take much to cause a mess out on the roads when you have arctic air in place for most all of the eastern half of the country in conjunction with a surge of warm, moist air from the south.
The image above tells it all and leads us to our next concern; ice. What type of precipitation you end up with will depend on where you live.
The map below is a rainbow of colors, showing winter weather is likely from Missouri all the way to Washington, D.C. and down to the Tennessee Valley. The time frame: from now and until late Saturday. Right now, Middle Tennessee is seeing some light snowfall accumulating on grassy surfaces, but periods of freezing rain/sleet mixing in later is certainly not out of the question.
Missouri is concerning based on the latest forecast model guidance for this afternoon and this evening. Check out our in-house forecast model for later this evening for Central Missouri. The pink depicts a wintry mix likely before a change over to snow. This could mean extended periods of freezing rain, leading to power outages and dangerous travel.
All this moisture riding a warm front North will continue to track into the Northern areas of the Mid-Atlantic, pushing over the colder temperatures at the surface. This means heavy snow is likely for Eastern Kentucky stretching into West Virginia and Virginia by Saturday. Below is a look at forecasted totals.
Again, the biggest concern with this system will be any ice accumulation or wintry mix creating dangerous travel by Friday afternoon. If you can stay off the roads Friday night and Saturday, that is the smartest move.
By Saturday afternoon/evening, Middle Tennessee south into Mississippi, Louisana and Northern Alabama will scoot into the warm sector of this system. This means warmer temps and thunderstorms as the trailing cold front swings through.
Below is an area where thunderstorms will most likely be present. There is a marginal risk for some storms to be strong to potentially severe with the primary concern being damaging winds/hail and a very low end tornado threat.
Stay weather aware and stay safe!!
Meteorologist Merry Matthews