Tuesday, December 23, 2008

Tuesday afternoon thoughts

Winter Weather Advisory in affect through this afternoon**

Travel conditions are deteriorating especially in eastern Kansas through northern Missouri. Temperatures are just below to just above freezing around the area, and we are getting rain, freezing rain, and sleet. The map below shows the areas in which if there is precipitation falling, what I think it would be in the form of. I am basing this off the surface temperatures. This is from around 2:30 PM this afternoon, and not much has changed since then.

See the purple area I have circled including Kansas City. This is where the rain, even though temperatures are above freezing is icing up the roadways. The reason for this is that after all of the cold air we have had the last few days, and the snowfall, the ground and roads are still below freezing, thus the ice is forming. Now like I said yesterday, all of the precipitation is very light. Even with that said, it is still causing big problems on the roadways.

There have been many accidents, some fatal today, so be careful when you are out this afternoon. And if you live in that purple area, even through your car may show 35 degrees, chances are, the roads are still below freezing, and there will be some ice.

Now the area in the pink is where temperatures are at or below freezing, and I think you can expect just about anything in this area, from rain, freezing rain, sleet, and possibly some snow showers. Where I am at in Marceline, we have had freezing rain, and we are hovering right at 32 degrees right now with some sprinkles. Road conditions around here are pretty much the same, with the asphalt below freezing. At least salt works well in this weather unlike last weekend when it didnt matter how much salt you put out, the ice wasnt going to melt. If you put salt out now, the ice will melt just fine.

I do see some good news later this evening on the ice situation. Warmer air is continuing to filter in, and I think most of the area should be above freezing for a few hours overnight before the main storm system approaches, swinging another cold front through the region. This little break in the freezing temperatures will help to melt the ice even more. Once the front pushes through, we will fall below freezing again, and snow will be developing in Kansas, and pushing eastward into Missouri late tonight. There is no chance of snow in Missouri before midnight, so everybody should have time to go out this evening. The snow will start late tonight and go into tomorrow morning. Right now I am thinking 1-3 inches possible from I-70 northward, with the higher totals the farther north you go.

This will create more travel problems in the morning as well. I think the sun should come out Wednesday afternoon as this is a fast moving system. I think any snow that falls tonight and tomorrow morning will last till Christmas due to I am only expecting temperatures to be in the upper teens to mid 20's around the area Wednesday.

Christmas day will warm into the mid to upper 30's, with 40's nearby, and it will be even warmer by Friday- into the 50's as another, stronger storm system develops.

So the active roller coaster continues, and I am expecting it to continue for the nest few weeks.

I will have another update this evening as new data rolls in,

Alex Pickman


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