A winter storm is moving in as an arctic cold front is rapidly pushing east across the Midwest.
It will arrive in Ohio toward daybreak Friday, Storm Center 7 Chief Meteorologist Eric Elwell said.
A low-pressure system will develop along the front, enhancing precipitation across the region Friday morning. As that occurs, temperatures will fall and rain will change to freezing rain, which could last for 2 to 3 hours before changing to sleet and eventually snow.
With the record breaking high Wednesday and near breaking high Thursday, the roads initially will stay mainly wet.
“However, as temperatures fall into the 20s, road temperatures will drop and icy conditions will develop,” Elwell said. “Expect a wintry mess for the evening commute as snow is expected to be widespread and moderate to heavy at times.”
The latest forecast has around 3 to 4 inches of snow falling through Friday night. With the track now shifting to the southeast, a few spots southeast of Dayton could pick up higher amounts of snow, Elwell said.
“While we believe we have a good handle now on the track of the storm, the intensity of the overall system is still somewhat in question. Any fluctuations, even minor, could have a big impact on snow amounts and precipitation types.
“If by sunset you have sleet falling in your area and not snow, you likely can expect you will have less snow amounts than currently forecast. However, a faster change-over to snow may mean higher amounts,” Elwell said.
Whatever amount falls, gusty winds developing behind the storm will create blowing and drifting of the snow that will reduce visibility and cause problems on the roads well into Saturday.