ST. LOUIS — With cold air in place across Missouri and Illinois, the stage is set for a wintry mix to develop on Friday.
Late Thursday, a mix of snow, sleet and freezing rain was already developing over portions of Oklahoma and western Texas. This weather system will move northeast spreading the unsettled weather across the region into Friday. Winter weather advisories have been issued by the National Weather Service for all of the 5 On Your Side area.
The first snowflakes may fall in the Rolla area during the morning rush hour.
Closer into the metro St. Louis area, the snow is expected to begin late morning toward lunchtime. It will be toward the afternoon & evening rush farther east and northeast of St. Louis when the snow begins.
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After an hour or two of light snow with accumulation of less than an inch, some sleet will mix in and then a change to sleet and freezing rain. The sleet doesn't last too long before it is mostly freezing rain. This icy mix may last two to four hours and create a light glaze of ice, especially on elevated surfaces. Up to two-tenths of an inch of ice may accumulate on elevated surfaces. Untreated surfaces may also become icy into the afternoon.
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As temperatures warm above freezing from southwest to northeast, the freezing rain will change to rain after the evening rush hour and that will continue into early Saturday morning. Locally, more than an inch of rain will fall. A flood watch has been issued for our area as the ground is saturated from last week's heavy rain.
Saturday will turn windy and colder. Morning temperatures will be in the 40s to near 50° but drop dramatically during the late afternoon. By Sunday morning, temperatures will be in the teens and it will stay could through Martin Luther King, Jr. Day on Monday.