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Winter Storm Warning issued as heavy snow takes aim on region

Expect heavy snow to develop across the area on Friday.
Published: Jan. 13, 2022 at 6:27 PM CST
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OTTUMWA, Iowa (KYOU) - The winter storm for Friday remains on track, according to the latest information we have.

A Winter Storm Warning has been issued for the entirety of our southeastern Iowa counties, including Ottumwa. This is the National Weather Service’s way of pointing out the areas they anticipate will have the worst winter storm conditions during this event.

A variety of winter weather-related alerts in effect for the area on Friday, January 14, 2022.
A variety of winter weather-related alerts in effect for the area on Friday, January 14, 2022.(KYOU)

Light snow could develop as early as mid-morning, with a more sustainable area of accumulating snow likely to enter the Ottumwa area by about 10:00 a.m. to Noon. From there, the highest intensity snowfall rates are likely to take place by late afternoon through Midnight, when snow could accumulate as fast as an inch per hour or more at times. This type of snow will cause road conditions to deteriorate rapidly.

The total expected snowfall has not changed very much from our forecast on Wednesday, with most of the area in line for 4 to 8 inches of accumulation. Surrounding this area, 2 to 4 inches of snowfall will be found.

Expected snowfall totals from a winter storm on Friday, January 14, through Saturday, January...
Expected snowfall totals from a winter storm on Friday, January 14, through Saturday, January 15, 2022.(KYOU)

This snow will mostly be of a wetter, heavier nature than our most recent storm. This has an advantage, potentially limiting blowing and drifting issues somewhat. However, it will also be more difficult to shovel. Don’t try to lift all of the snow at once, or otherwise overexert yourself, with this type of snow. People with heart conditions should take extreme care when trying to clean up after this storm.

Expect poor driving conditions to develop late Friday morning and continue through the rest of Friday into the first half of Saturday. This will greatly affect the evening commute across the area. If you have travel plans, you should strongly consider delaying them. If you must travel, give yourself plenty of time to get to your destination and slow down. Take a winter weather survival kit with you, which includes items like blankets, flashlights, a small amount of food or water, a shovel, and something gritty like sand or kitty litter to help give your tires traction if you get stuck.

Colder air returns this weekend, with highs in the 20s. This will not be as cold as recent cold snaps, but temperatures closer in nature to that are likely to make a comeback by the middle of next week.

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