A Major Winter Storm Arriving Soon

Monday, January 31st 2011, 5:31 am
By: News On 6

A major winter storm will arrive tonight and continue overnight through Tuesday midday before exiting the state late Tuesday evening.  Significant amounts of sleet and snow will be likely and some freezing rain will also occur with this system.  A winter storm warning remains in effect beginning tonight at 6pm for a large portion of the viewing area through and continuing through Wednesday morning.  Sleet and snowfall amounts will be from 4 to 12 inches with some higher amounts along the I-44 corridor.  Preparations should be completed for this storm before tonight.  This system will also bring much colder air with strong north winds creating blizzard like effects Tuesday across northern and eastern OK.  

Arctic air will be arriving later tonight and will stay across the region through at least Friday.  This air mass, combined with the expect snow and sleet cover, will act to keep surface temperatures in the teens for daytime highs Wednesday and Thursday with overnight lows possibly dropping near or below zero in some locations Thursday morning. 

Dangerous wind chill values from 5 to -15 will also be possible Tuesday through Wednesday and wind chill advisories may be required. 

Travel will be discouraged tonight through Wednesday midday.  If you must travel, use extreme caution and plan for delays. 

 Another fast and weak system will approach the area Sunday into Monday with a slight chance of snow showers.

 Some quick notes regarding our incoming system:

NAM and GFS bufkit profile data continues to offer even higher snowfall totals for portions of northern OK.  The main issue will be the duration of rain to sleet to snow.  If the sleet to snow transition is rather quick, higher snowfall totals will be likely.  We'll be posting updates later today as additional data arrives from the model suite.