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Possible Ice Storm in SE US


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Significant icing event possible this weekend

6:45 A.M. ET 1/27/2005


Tim Ballisty, Meteorologist, The Weather Channel



Wednesday's snowfall has pushed Boston, Massachusetts to their all-time monthly snowfall record with 43.1 inches, breaking the old record of 41.6 inches set in February 2003. Worcester, Massachusetts broke their January snowfall record with 49.9 inches, breaking the old record of 46.8" set in January of 1987. Binghamton, New York surpassed their January snowfall record with 45.5", breaking the old record of 43.6 inches set in January, 1987. Providence, Rhode Island is approaching their all-time monthly snowfall record with 36.7 inches, they need only get to 37.4 inches set in January of 1996 to tie and then break their record. What a snowy season it has been for Southern New England. Some locations in the Cape have had over 60 inches of snowfall this season.


A warning flag should be raised today across the Southeast for the potential of a significant ice storm. Cold high pressure stationed over New York State will funnel cold air along the east side of the Appalachians beginning late tonight. This will allow surface temperatures across the western Carolinas, north Georgia, and northeastern Alabama to sink to near or below freezing by Friday but especially by Friday night and Saturday morning. This time period is emphasized here due to the fact that Gulf moisture will begin to spread northward at this time. With temperatures holding at or below freezing and Gulf moisture overriding the freezing air at the surface, a period (possibly an extended period) of freezing rain may accumulate on area roads, tree limbs, and power lines. Locations such as Huntsville and Anniston, Ala.; Atlanta, Athens, and Augusta, Ga.; Greenville and Anderson, S.C.; and Asheville, Charlotte, and Raleigh, N.C. should all prepare for very dangerous travel conditions this weekend along with power outages. Preparations should be taken now.


After receiving almost a half an inch of rain yesterday, more rain is in the cards again today for Phoenix. Dangerous driving conditions is likely this morning in Salt Lake City as freezing rain has been falling off and on during the overnight hours and early this morning. Take care on area Salt Lake city roadways. Winter weather advisories are in place for the Sangre de Cristo Mountains of New Mexico and the San Juan Mountains of Colorado. Snow levels are very high with 4 to 10 inches of snow expected at and above 7500 feet. A snow advisory is in place for the southern Wasatch of Utah above 7000 feet with some of the highest of elevations expecting close to a foot by this afternoon. A new storm will approach northern and central California tonight bringing with it rainfall that will be heavy at times and significant snow for the northern Sierra mountains. A winter storm watch is in effect for these mountains at snow levels above 3500 feet.

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