Freezing rain potential tomorrow

Weather

It has been bitterly cold over these last few days, so at least we will get a short break from it tomorrow… But with the warmer temperatures comes the chance for freezing rain. Ahead of this weather system, the National Weather Service has issued Winter Weather Advisories across much of the Southern part of our viewing area. Western parts of these go into effect at 9AM tomorrow and Eastern parts go into effect at 1PM. This advisory also stretches as far South as St Louis, covering most of Illinois.

We will see the freezing rain move in from the South, just clipping the Stateline through the afternoon and evening. Futurecast shows scattered to isolated freezing drizzle through most of the afternoon and evening tomorrow. The heavier areas of ice accumulation will definitely remain South, but we could still see more than a few hundredths of an inch of ice, which is more than enough to cause some hazardous travel conditions.

This freezing rain is likely to develop for a few reasons. First, we are having some fairly strong Southerly winds that will move some moisture and warmth into the Stateline, and with that, we will see precipitation. This initially falls as snow, as all wintry precipitation does. However, there will be a layer of air just above the surface that is above freezing, causing the snow to melt into rain. Then, that rain will encounter the colder, below freezing air closer to the surface, and freeze on contact with the ground.

If we time out the precipitation tomorrow, we will see the main time frame of concern is in the afternoon and evening tomorrow. We will mainly see the chances for freezing rain develop after 12PM, and we could see chances for those last into the evening. Some slick spots on roadways are possible, if not likely. Untreated roads could become especially slick. Overall, we will only see accumulations reach a few hundredths of an inch, but that is still more than enough to cause some issues on the roadways.

We will cool back down into Sunday and Monday, but warmer temperatures are on the way near the end of the week. See video below for the full forecast from our 6PM newscast.

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