Weekend winter ice storm to target the central United States

By Daniel Uria  |  Jan. 14, 2017 at 10:57 AM
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WASHINGTON, Jan. 14 (UPI) -- An ice storm is expected to bring frozen rain, sleet and heavy snow to areas in the central United States this weekend.

The potentially damaging ice storm is a result of Winter Storm Jupiter and is expected to bring bursts of freezing rain to the Plains and Midwest from Saturday through Monday, according to the Weather Channel.

Beginning Saturday, widespread freezing rain is expected to extend from the central and southern Plains through the Ohio Valley, while mid-Atlantic states can expect a mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain, and ice accumulations on trees and power lines in the Plains and mid-Mississippi Valley may cause power outages.

Conditions are expected to persist and worsen in some areas on Sunday before warm air begins to push through on Monday.

Due to the storm, more than 30 million Americans will face some kind of icy weather watch, warning or advisory including 10 million facing ice storm warnings,according to CNN.

Ice storm warnings were issued in the Texas panhandle, Oklahoma, Kansas, Missouri and Illinois, as the areas may experience widespread tree damage and power outages from the oncoming storm.

Portions of eastern Colorado, Nebraska and Iowa were also placed under winter storm watches in advance of a potential mix of snow, sleet and/or freezing rain.

Freezing rain advisories were placed into effect in the Ohio Valley and the Appalachians due to light ice accumulations, which may potentially make road travel more dangerous.

Two deaths were reported due to icy roads after Desloge, Mo., received half an inch of freezing rain early Saturday morning.

Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri are expected to receive up to one inch of ice, which could potentially cause millions of residents to lose power and make travel impossible.

Oklahoma Governor Mary Fallin declared a state of emergency for each of the state's 77 counties and 200 National Guard soldiers prepared to provide assistance to local authorities in Kansas and Missouri.

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