Friday, January 25, 2013

An Icy Weekend Ahead

While the start of this weekend should stay fairly quiet, Sunday is going to bring a slew of winter weather problems. Namely, freezing rain.

First, let's explain how freezing rain works. When air in the upper levels of the atmosphere is above freezing, precipitation takes the form of rain. If temperatures at the ground are below zero, that rain will freeze when it lands.

This is basically our setup for Sunday. Here's a look at our timeline:

Sunday Morning: Freezing rain could move in as early as the morning, but models are suggesting our wintry precip moves in midday. It could still be cold enough in the upper parts of the atmosphere that some snow and sleet could mix in. That's the blue mixing in with the purple on our Futurecast.

Sunday Afternoon: Freezing rain continues, but as temperatures warm near the freezing mark, we could see a few patches of just rain mixing in.

Sunday Night: Temps will continue to warm overnight, so any rain that is left will not be of the freezing variety, although accumulating ice is expected. Models are suggesting a few tenths of an inch of ice by Sunday evening. If this forecast holds, roads are going to be slick and dangerous in many spots. Accumulating ice on things like power lines could also cause power outages if the ice gets heavy enough.

If you have any weekend plans, either do them on Saturday or wait until next week to do them. Regardless of whether we get ice or not, Sunday is looking to be pretty messy. Stay safe!

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