UPDATED: Columbia prepares for snow, parts of northwest Missouri already closed

From 3pm-5:30pm, we responded to:??63 weather-related calls for service??12 crashes??13 slide-offsNo injuries or fatalities #MOwx #MidMOwx pic.twitter.com/002jaIGuIL

The forecast remains on track. The hardest hit area in Missouri will still be northwestern and northern Missouri. However, due to winds that are anticipated to gust between 40-45 mph, everyone seeing snow will experience reduced visibility. The farther north and west you go, the worse the visibility and the road conditions will be. Please do not view lower snow accumulations as safe driving conditions…every area seeing snow will experience dangerous driving conditions. 

NW MO will start seeing rain between 4am-6am. This will transition to snow between 6am-Noon and all of NW MO is expected to be under moderate to heavy snowfall by Noon. 

Snow is tapering off in the northwest. That will give crews the opportunity to catch up and more effectively clear lanes. If you remain parked a bit longer, they will be able to make your way safer.

Expected Snowfall (As of Sunday Morning)South of I-70: 1/2″-2″ North of I-70: 1-4″ North of HWY 24: 4-8″ **Please note: The Track of this storm may change & locally higher amounts are possible**Stay tuned to KOMU 8 for the latest. @KOMUnews #MidMoWx #MoWx pic.twitter.com/S0hrCgyD19

If your travel in northern Missouri is urgent, you will not be able to safely operate anywhere near the posted speed limit. Those are set for ideal conditions. Beware of refreezing moisture as well.

As for timing, it looks to begin between 6-9am in western Missouri and begin by Noon for eastern Missouri. It will continue through the afternoon and exit to the east in the evening. 

MOUND CITY, Mo. — MoDOT reopened Missouris portion of Interstate 29 between the Iowa border and Mound City late Sunday evening.

As you can see in the image, I-70 travelers will need to use caution, and certainly stay tuned in case this system tracks further south, but overall it looks doable at this point. North of I-70, however, it gets tricky. If you want to be safe, for sure, I suggest driving on Saturday when the sun is shining and the winds arent an issue. 

COLUMBIA – As Thanksgiving weekend comes to a close, Sunday is typically the busiest travel day on roadways as families return home and college students head back to school. This year, the busiest travel day may be the worst weather day to travel in.

On Sunday, a deepening (strengthening) low pressure system will push through the state of Missouri. This will cause a few different things to happen. First, temps will be warm enough in front of this system that as moisture gets going, precipitation will start to fall as rain. Then, a cold front will push through and temperatures will rapidly fall below freezing as moisture hangs on, changing the rain into snow. Any sleet that falls during this transition will be brief and negligible. 

The first thing you may think to ask is, “How much will accumulate?” However, the real question should be, “How strong will the winds be?” Because of this deepening low, winds will be rather strong, gusting up to 40+ mph as the snow passes through. This will, of course, lead to decreased (if not white-out at times) conditions. Visibility will be worse where the snow falls heaviest; which takes me back to the first question.

Accumulation will be greatest where the heaviest snow falls, which may seem obvious, but this is especially true in this situation because soil temperatures will be warm due to recent mild weather. Light and even moderate snow will likely melt fairly well on these warmer ground temps, however, if snow falls fast enough, the melting wont keep up, and snow will accumulate. This accumulation will first happen on bridges, because they dont have soil temps to keep them warmer than the air temperature. Other grassy, elevated, and insulated surfaces will also see accumulation first.

First, please note that this system is just starting to get off the Pacific Ocean and is still developing. There is a lot that can change between now and when this system arrives in our backyard. With that said, the heaviest snow is most likely to fall in northern Missouri and southern Iowa. Snow is still likely to make it to I-70 and as far south as the Lake of the Ozarks (and remember blowing snow is a main factor in this event, so even if you arent seeing the MOST snow, you are still going to have impacts). 

I will say that it wont surprise me one bit if this system changes its track over the next couple days; whether that be further north or further south. This is why I need you to stay tuned. 

Our forecast confidence for this winter storm is high when it comes to timing and intensity. Confidence is still low to moderate when it comes to the path, it could still go slightly north or south, rapidly changing the situation for thousands. Again, this system is still getting its act together on the Pacific coast, please stay tuned. 

KENTON, WHEN SHOULD I TRAVEL? Ill tell you what I am telling my family, word-for-word: “I feel more comfortable if you would travel back home on Saturday instead of Sunday. Then no one has to stress about will-it-or-wont-it. Id rather you be safe than sorry. If you decide to wait it out and see what it looks like on Sunday, please be prepared to take Monday off work and travel then instead of during this event. I do not want you on the roads when visibility is low, roads may be slick, and other drivers may not be competent drivers in these winter conditions.”

If you HAVE to travel through north or north-central Missouri on Sunday then stay tuned. The timing, location, and strength of this system are still to be decided and there will likely be a better window to travel on Sunday than other times of the day. 

Stay up to date with the latest forecast, video updates, live streaming newscasts, and interactive radar plus live traffic grids on the KOMU 8 Weather & Traffic App.

SUNDAY: We're off to a quiet, slightly warmer start this morning. But things will quickly change throughout the day. A rapidly intensifying storm system is still on track to impact Mid-Missouri today. We'll start out as all rain shortly before midday but as strong winds usher in colder air, we will change that rain over to mostly snow by the afternoon. In addition to helping us changeover to snow, these winds will create whiteout conditions, reducing visibility to a dangerously low distance. Macon and Chariton counties are currently the only two under a Blizzard Warning in Mid-Missouri, but anyone along and northwest of HWY 50 will see blizzard-like conditions this afternoon and evening. This is a situation where roads will become dangerous quickly so avoid travel if at all possible in these location.

TONIGHT: Snow will taper off from west to east into the early morning hours. Winds will relax tonight but you still need to bundle up and cover those exposed areas with wind chills dropping to near 10.

EXTENDED: Cold air sets up shop in Mid-Missouri to start out the work week as daytime highs struggle to get back to freezing Monday and Tuesday. Bundle up if you have any plans at night as lows reach the upper teens to low 20s both nights. Wednesday we get closer to 40 as another disturbance moves in Thursday, bringing the next shot at rain. Watch ABC 17 News for the latest forecast and check back here for updates.


Posted in Columbia