The Fayette County Sheriff’s Office advised the public that the county is under a winter storm watch from Sunday through Tuesday due to potential inclement weather coming to the area.
According to weather.gov, “Normally, a Winter Storm Watch will be issued in advance of the storm (usually at least 24 hours). It indicates the risk of a hazardous winter weather event has increased (at least a 50 percent chance of it occurring), but its occurrence, location, and/or timing is still uncertain. It is intended to provide enough lead time so you can make plans to stay safe.”
According to weather.com, following a cold but mostly clear weekend, Monday is expected to have a high temperature of 17 degrees and a low of 12 degrees. Currently, there is a 60 percent chance of snow during the day with accumulation expected around one to three inches. This is expected to continue into Monday night when the chance of a winter storm climbs to 80 percent and more accumulation — around three to five inches — is predicted.
“We are keeping an eye on the weather as well, but once again, these are forecasts, we’ll see what actually happens,” Fayette County Engineer Steve Luebbe said on Friday. “That said, the combination of cold, snow and wind in the forecast is not good. Salt doesn’t work when it gets really cold, and the snow and ice end up bonding to the pavement. When that happens all we can do is knock down the drifts and keep the roads passable; then wait for warmer days.”
Those warmer days won’t be coming next week.
Tuesday is expected to remain precipitation-free but will be even colder with a high around 18 degrees and a low of zero. Winds will continue to blow into the evening but should slow down considerably.
“The crews have spent a lot of time in the plow trucks already this year,” Luebbe said. “They’ve had quite a few long days and nights already. They could use a little reprieve. If not, they’ll be out doing what they can. As for salt supplies, we are fine right now. Unless things get really crazy, we should be fine for the rest of the winter.”
Not wanting to be outdone, Wednesday is predicted to be similar to Monday with high temperatures in the low 20s and a low temperature in the high teens, and most importantly more snow. Currently, Wednesday could have snow accumulation of less than an inch during the day that could become more steady at night and accumulate up to five inches. This snow is forecasted to continue into the day Thursday with a high temperature of 29 degrees, a low of 17 degrees and accumulation of up to five inches. The snow should continue further into Thursday night and could drop an additional one to three inches.
Finally, Friday should give Fayette County residents a break from snowfall with partly cloudy skies with some sunshine and winds around 10 to 15 miles per hour throughout the day and night. Temperatures could still be cold though with a high of 24 degrees and a low of 9.
“Hopefully everyone keeps their patience, and senses when traveling this winter,” Luebbe said. “We’re doing our best to keep things looking good, but when mother nature wants to get tough, that’s a battle we are going to lose every time.”
The information in this article was provided by weather.com. Stay with the Record-Herald for more coverage of winter weather in Fayette County.
Reach Martin Graham at (740) 463-9684 or on Twitter @MartiTheNewsGuy.