Arctic air, already invading the northern Plains, will continue to sweep southward and eastward as a storm with snow travels across the central Plains Saturday night and the middle Mississippi and Ohio valleys on Sunday.
The big storm will follow a batch of snow that traversed the northern tier of the Midwest into Friday night.
The swath of heaviest snow will emerge from Colorado and extend across Kansas, Missouri, southern Illinois, southern Indiana and central and southeastern Ohio. Snow can pile up to a depth of 6-12 inches along a swath of southeastern Kansas and southern Missouri.
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Travel will become difficult and dangerous. The snow may pile up so fast along the Interstate 70 corridor as to strand motorists.
The major Central states airport hubs from Denver to St. Louis, Cincinnati and Pittsburgh are likely to experience significant delays due to deicing and runway maintenance as these will be in the heart of the storm.
The number of flight cancellations is likely to grow and impact airports outside of the heaviest snow such as Atlanta, Chicago, Dallas, Detroit and Minneapolis.
While snow from this storm will pass south of Minneapolis and stay well north of Dallas and Atlanta, Chicago and Detroit can get enough snow to make roads, sidewalks and runways slippery.
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Cold blast to freeze Midwest, Northeast following weekend storm
Areas from central Texas to Tennessee and the Gulf coast can expect rain from this storm. Storms may become severe over the lower Mississippi Valley on Sunday.
Most of the flight impacts will be from Sunday to Monday as the storm first moves in and then crews and aircraft are displaced in the storm’s wake.
The storm will cause its share of travel problems in the Northeast as well as the heavy snow swath is forecast to extend from Pennsylvania to Maine.
Plunging temperatures will cause slush and wet areas to freeze solid soon after the conclusion of the storm. Temperatures will crash from the 30s and 20s to the teens, single digits and near zero in the snow area as the weekend draws to a close.
A lobe of the polar vortex will wobble across south-central Canada late this weekend and then close to the Great Lakes region next week. Its close proximity will inflict painful cold and windy conditions.
It may take until the end of the week before temperatures moderate significantly and the jet stream ends its southward polar plunge.
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