A winter storm will sweep across the midwest Wednesday and into Thursday morning. States north of Missouri will see snowfall, areas south and west of Missouri will get more thunderstorms and rain.
In Missouri, National Weather Service meteorologist Chris Bowman says the heaviest snowfall will be in northwestern Missouri.
“We’re probably looking on the order of 3 to maybe upwards of 7 inches, maybe 4, upwards of 8 depending on how things play out. Snow amounts are going to be generally lesser as you progress to the south and southeast. For the Kansas City area it looks like a solid 1 to 3 with the heaviest amounts across the northwestern part of the Kansas City metro area, so northern Platte County … into southeastern Jackson County. Over toward Kirksville across northern Missouri probably in the 2 to 4, 3 to 5 inch range for snowfall and then amounts again trail off as you go south, so towards Columbia maybe half an inch of snow?”
The Weather Service says the storm will also pack strong northwest winds of 25 to 35 miles per hour, gusting as high as 45 miles per hour that could cause drifting snow and create “blizzard like” conditions.
“There are going to be periods of time where the strong winds combine with the snow to create visibilities on the order of a quarter-mile or less intermittently through the duration of the storm.
There will also be some sleet or freezing rain as temperatures drop and rain transitions over to snow.
“That’s going to quickly move from west-to-east across mainly northern Missouri … don’t expect to have much in the way of any accumulation from sleet or any frozen precipitation.”
Captain Tim Hull says Missouri didn’t have much of a winter last year, and people tend to forget how to drive on snow and ice.
“We always take this opportunity to remind everybody before we start seeing the snow and ice fly to make sure that they’re prepared … their vehicle’s prepared, they’re mentally prepared, to operate that vehicle in these kinds of driving conditions.”
The Department of Transportation says its crews in Northwest Missouri are ready.
“We’ve got our equipment all calibrated and checked and all of our supplies are stocked and the employees are on alert. We’re basically watching the weather just like everyone else is and we are ready to go when the situation arises.”
Bowman says temperatures in the wake of the system will be much colder on Thursday.
“They’ll struggle through the day on Thursday and maybe by the late afternoon, parts of western Missouri from Kansas City southward to Paola, Kansas or Butler, Missouri might warm up into the lower 30s but elsewhere it’s going to stay in the 20s through the duration of the storm.”
For the latest information, watches and warnings, visit the website of the National Weather Service office for your area: