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February 5, 2014

Potential winter weather for Thursday

MILLEDGEVILLE — A fast moving system may bring potential winter weather to the Baldwin County area Thursday night according to the National Weather Service.

In Baldwin County, a 50 percent chance of rain after 1 p.m. Thursday. Mostly cloudy with a high near 50. North wind around 5 mph becoming northeast in Thursday morning.

An upper level of disturbance is expected to move across the Mississippi and Alabama Thursday morning and gradually spread moisture northward across the local forecast area Thursday afternoon into the evening. This will lead to light rain developing from Columbus to Macon initially by 10 a.m. to noon.

From there, it will spread northward to start in the Atlanta Metro during the early afternoon hours Thursday. At the onset of precipitation, the temperatures will be in the lower 40s, which will result in just a cold rain. However, as the rain continues, the temperatures will fall with light snow mixing in with the rain along and north of LaGrange to Athens and up to the Atlanta Metro during the evening hours Thursday night.

North of the Metro and including the mountains, the precipitation will be mainly snow, but amounts are expected to be very light. All the precipitation will end by late Thursday night with colder temperatures moving in its wake.

As of Wednesday afternoon, the impact looks to be a far different scenario than last week with temperatures remaining above freezing while the precipitation is falling. Also, lighter amounts of precipitation will further limit any accumulation potential. Based on these factors, the National Weather Service is going with little to no accumulation for most all areas with the exception of the higher elevations of the mountains where a dusting is possible.

By far, the biggest potential impact will be the black ice Thursday night as sub freezing temperatures rush in and residual wet roadways become slick due to ice. This threat could persist into Friday morning with temperatures not expected to rise above freezing until 10 a.m.

This is a rapidly evolving winter weather event with the scope remaining uncertain as of press time Wednesday. The National Weather Service will continue inspecting the latest data to determine snow amounts if any across the area as well as potential impacts for Thursday night and Friday travel.

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