Ice Storm Brewing for Chicago, Detroit, St. LouisHalf an inch of ice possible in Illinois, Michigan
A storm bringing rain to Southern California to end this week will roll into a zone of departing Arctic air and cold ground over the Midwest.
As AccuWeather.com Staff Writer Grace Muller alluded to on Thursday, a broad area of freezing rain and sleet is in store, lasting from a couple of hours in some locations to an entire day in others.
Major cities that have the potential for a period of freezing this weekend include Omaha, Neb.; St. Louis, Mo.; Des Moines, Iowa; Madison, Wis.; Chicago, Ill.; Indianapolis, Ind.; Detroit, Mich.; Pittsburgh, Pa.; and London, Ontario.
There is the potential for a serious ice storm from central and northern Illinois to southern Michigan with this setup. There is the potential for 0.25-0.50 of an inch of buildup of freezing rain on exposed surfaces in some locations.
According to Meteorologist Andy Mussoline, "Even in areas where the air temperature manages to get a bit above the 32-degree mark, the ground is very cold and will cause some of that rain to freeze on contact."
Freezing rain is much more dangerous than sleet.
According to Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams, "In many cases, the road or sidewalk appears wet, but in fact it can be covered with a thin sheen of ice, called clear ice or black ice."
The same problems may then advance across portions of upstate New York and New England later in the day Monday into Monday night.
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The ice storm will precede a brief warmup for a several-day period next week, before arctic air makes a comeback from the northern Plains into the Midwest and Northeast during early February.
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