PARKERSBURG - The New Year is expected to begin with a blast of Arctic air and a little snowfall in the Mid-Ohio Valley, according to the National Weather Service in Charleston.
"We have a cold front that will move through the area on Thursday with Arctic air following," said meteorologist Ray Young with the bureau. "Some snow will come with the colder temperatures, but it's not going to be a major event."
Parkersburg and the surrounding area can expect between one and three inches between this evening and Thursday night.
Photo by Jolene Craig
The road salt and cinders piles for the City of Belpre are ready to be placed on trucks and scattered throughout the city’s streets when the snow and ice flies this week.
"Snow is expected to mostly fall Thursday and end by Friday morning," Young said.
Although it will not bring major snowfall to the area, Young said it will likely be enough to cause road conditions to be slick.
"Hopefully crews will be ready for the conditions with roads and streets being salted, but drivers need to be cautious when out," he added.
Along with the small snowfall will be below freezing temperatures from the Arctic air system.
"We are looking at temperatures around 10 degrees with highs reaching the low 20s on Friday," Young said. "In fact, it could be as low as the single digits on Saturday morning; this is a pretty good Arctic air mass."
These temperatures are well below the average of the mid 30s for this time of year, he continued.
"Everyone should get used to it because after a brief increase to the upper 30s expected on Saturday, another system will be coming early next week that is expected to be even colder," Young said. "This second system will bring our first chance in four years to have below-zero temperatures."
Lows on Jan. 6 and 7 are expected to be 12 and 16 degrees, not taking wind chill factor into consideration.
"We will just have to wait and see what happens," Young added.
More than 70 million people will be affected as this same system is expected to drop major snow in the upper part of the mid-Atlantic and southern New England regions during the same time period, according to AccuWeather.com. The worst of the storm is expected to hit northeastern Pennsylvania, a large part of New Jersey, southeastern New York and other New England states with between 6 and 12 inches of accumulation.
It will be far from the worst storm to ever hit the area, but people should be prepared for flight delays and cancellations because of direct and indirect impacts from the far-reaching storm.
"The storms will not organize fast enough to make the perfect storm, but it will cause a significant amount of snow to fall over a large area," said Evan Myers, AccuWeather.com chief operating officer.
The storm is slated to spread a swath of accumulating snow eastward from Iowa and Illinois to Indian, Ohio, Kentucky, West Virginia and part of lower Michigan and southern Wisconsin.