What is going on?

Last night we had snow/sleet/freezing rain, this morning just plain old rain in some spots. Well, the area of low pressure is basically right over top of us and it’s pushing milder air from the south into the Stateline. Temperatures this morning are in the mid and upper 30s. So the rain will continue through the next couple of hours this morning making for a very slushy commute if you have to travel anywhere. Once we get on the back side of the low, with more of northwesterly wind, that’s when we’ll see the rain change back over to snow. Watch for slick spots because the rain that is falling now will likely freeze as temperatures fall below the freezing degree mark.

Winter Storm Warnings have been cancelled for Winnebago, Boone, McHenry, Ogle, Lee, and DeKalb counties. Warnings still remain for Rock, Green, and Walworth counties in southern Wisconsin and Stephenson, Jo Daviess, Carroll, and Whiteside counties. I would imagine that those won’t last too long into the afternoon, but we’ll see. Places in extreme northwestern Illinois and Wisconsin will still have to deal with blowing and drifting snow because accumulations were a little higher in those places.

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This post was written by qni_it on February 25, 2007

Blizzard Warnings Cancelled for Some

The Blizzard Warning that was in effect for Rock and Walworth counties has been cancelled and changed to a Winter Storm Warning, while they still remain for Stephenson, Jo Daviess, Carroll, and Green counties. I would imagine this will be cancelled within the next couple of hours.

Meanwhile, we are still dealing with a Winter Storm Warning until 6pm for the rest of the WREX Viewing area. Once the Blizzard Warning ends for Stephenson, Carroll, and Jo Daviess counties a Winter Storm Warning goes in effect until Sunday evening as well. Confusing, I know! Bottom line, snow is beginning to lighten up across the Stateline with the heaviest amounts still to the north. We’re looking for a little more snow to develop on the back side of the low Sunday afternoon.

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This post was written by qni_it on February 25, 2007

Freezing Rain Now Occurring

The snow that we saw earlier has changed over to freezing rain as temperatures warm into the lower 30s! This has caused some problems across the stateline. Half of Freeport is without power this evening. Ice could accumulate on power lines and continue to cause outages through the overnight. I will continue to update you throughout the overnight! If we do lose power again…tune to B103 where you will be able to get the latest weather information!

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This post was written by qni_it on February 25, 2007

Ice Storm Warning No Longer in Effect!

The Ice Storm Warning that was in effect for Ogle, Lee, and DeKalb counties has now been changed to a Winter Storm Warning effective until Noon on Sunday. Snow, sleet, and freezing rain will continue through the overnight. Heavy snow now is falling to the east of Rockford with some reports of “Thundersnow” just to the south! Temperatures tonight could climb close to 32 degrees which may change some of the snow over to freezing rain and sleet by morning. This is something that we will have to watch very closely!

Stay tuned!

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This post was written by qni_it on February 25, 2007

Visibilities as of 7:00PM

Winds gusting around 40 MPH this evening have caused reduced visibilities in some spots to less than a mile. Heavy snow mixed with sleet is being reported just southeast of the Rockford area in Northern DeKalb county. Blowing and drifting snow will continue through the rest of the overnight…and we’ll continue to keep you updated right here and on WREX as the storm progresses through the night.

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This post was written by qni_it on February 25, 2007

Ice Storm Warning in Effect

The National Weather Service in Chicago has issued an Ice Storm Warning for Ogle, Lee, and DeKalb County.

“THE WINTER WEATHER WARNINGHAS BEEN CHANGED TO AN ICE STORM WARNING. FREEZING RAIN WILL SPREAD IN FROM THE SOUTHWEST BEFORE SUNSET ANDCONTINUE THIS EVENING BEFORE TURNING TO DRIZZLE OR FREEZINGDRIZZLE LATER TONIGHT. AN ISOLATED THUNDERSTORM IS POSSIBLE.AN ICE STORM WARNING MEANS SEVERE WINTER WEATHER CONDITIONS AREEXPECTED OR OCCURRING. SIGNIFICANT AMOUNTS OF ICE ACCUMULATIONSWILL MAKE TRAVEL DANGEROUS OR IMPOSSIBLE. TRAVEL IS STRONGLYDISCOURAGED.”

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This post was written by qni_it on February 24, 2007

Major Storm Moving In

Lots to talk about this afternoon!
First: The Blizzard Warning that was in effect for the Rockford Metro area has now been changed to a Winter Storm Warning, including the counties of Boone, McHenry, and Whiteside. Blizzard Warning still in effect for Stephenson, Jo Daviess, Carroll, Rock, Green, and Walworth counties, and now and Ice Storm Warning for Ogle, Lee, and DeKalb counties. All of these weather advisories run until Sunday afternoon!

Second: A major ice storm has been hitting most of Iowa this afternoon. Some places have received over an inch of ice causing power outages and downed power lines. Snow and sleet have been moving over the Mississippi River and into Whiteside, Carroll, Jo Daviess, and Stephenson counties. Light snow has been falling off and on across the Rockford area. This will continue through the rest of the afternoon and evening. The heaviest will come late this evening and overnight. A mix of sleet and snow, heavy at times, will last through most of the day on Sunday. Look for the greatest snowfall totals to hug the Wisconsin/Illinois border and out toward the Mississippi River. Some places there will recieve over a foot! Six to twelve inches for Rockford proper with three to six inches south of Rt. 72. Blowing and drifting will be another concern through the overnight with gusts near 35 MPH! I’m working on an updated snowfall map and will post it soon!- CANDY

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This post was written by qni_it on February 24, 2007

Latest Doppler Radar

Click here for the latest radar picture. There is quite a bit of precipitation yet to move in. As the area of low pressure moves closer, winds will increase (perhaps gusting above 40mph). This will create white-out conditions.

The National Weather Service has backed off on their Blizzard Warning because conditions may not last for the required three consecutive hours. However, we may see blizzard conditions for a few hours late evening…into the overnight.

What has been interesting to see is the progression of this system. Right now you can see that the freezing line snakes through Northern Illinois and Southern Wisconsin. As I’ve posted before, the more freezing rain and sleet that takes place, the less snow will be seen. Keep in mind that one sleet pellet and one raindrop contain much more water than one flake of snow. So, we’ll be watching how the freezing rain (icing) situation progresses out of Eastern Iowa. We should cool the column of air above us after dark tonight. Snow will be likely with bursts of heavy, wind-driven snow. -ERIC

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This post was written by qni_it on February 24, 2007

Blizzard Warnings Now in Effect

A Blizzard Warning has been issued for most of the WREX-TV viewing area. Heavy snow with winds in excess of 35mph can be expected from Saturday afternoon through midday Sunday for areas shaded in red. Snowfall totals may exceed 12″ in some locations. Do not travel unless you have four wheel drive and a winter survival kit.

A Winter Storm Warning is in effect for Whiteside, Lee, and DeKalb County. Along I-88 there could be some icing which will hamper travel. In addition, 6-12″ of snowfall is expected across the area. -ERIC

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This post was written by qni_it on February 24, 2007

How much sleet and freezing rain will work in?

That’s the question.

I spoke with Mark Ratzner of the NWS in Chicago tonight. They still very concerned that freezing rain and sleet will work into our picture late Saturday night. One of the things that makes this system very rare is the fact that the center of low pressure will track so close to us (from Quincy to South Bend). Getting heavy snow this close to the low’s track is hard to do. Mark mentioned that temperatures remain near 32° from the surface all the way up. Any influx of warm air above us will bring the threat of freezing rain and sleet to the mix. However, if we stay at or below 32° in the column of air above us, we’ll be all snow…and tons of it!

Here’s what you should watch for Saturday: If we see a prolonged (1-3 hour) sleet event during the day Saturday, our snowfall forecast will be trimmed back greatly.

Candice King will be camped out here in the Weather Center tomorrow and tomorrow night. She will bring you the cut-ins on the air and on the radio. I will blog from home as I look at the newest models and reports.

Have a great night. Stay safe out there! -ERIC

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This post was written by qni_it on February 24, 2007