Up to 7 inches of snow expected in parts of the region

Posted: Jan. 31, 2014 11:08 pm Updated: Feb. 15, 2014 1:15 am

Herald-Whig Staff Writer

A winter storm warning remains in effect until 6 p.m. Saturday as the region copes with yet another blast of cold, icy, snowy weather.

The National Weather Service is forecasting snow accumulations up to 7 inches for portions of the area by mid-day Saturday. The highest accumulations are expected in northern Adams County and in the Northeast Missouri counties of Lewis and Knox. Smaller amounts of snow are expected further to the south.

This latest nasty blast was predicted to start overnight Friday with a "wintry mix" of freezing drizzle followed by snow and sleet, with two to four inches of snow anticipated by morning.

Then on Saturday, more snow, freezing rain and sleet was being predicted.

The snow is expected to take a break on Sunday before returning to the forecast Monday night and Tuesday.

The National Weather Service warned that travel will become dangerous once the freezing rain begins. The NWS said travel was "strongly discouraged" into Saturday unless it's an emergency.

Likewise, the Illinois State Police issued an advisory urging motorists to stay off roads if possible until travel conditions improve.

"No one thinks that they will become stranded," Robert Elliott, commander of the ISP's District 20 headquartered in Pittsfield, said in a press release.

The Illinois Department of Transportation says plows and weather crews will be on standby to deal with the snow. And IDOT Secretary Ann Schneider warns motorists to prepare for the possibility of blowing and drifting snow that could reduce visibility.

She also warns drivers to be aware of plows and to give them plenty of room to maneuver.

The Missouri Department of Transportation also is advising travelers to use caution.

"MoDOT crews will work throughout the night to keep roads plowed and treated," Beth Wright, MoDOT state maintenance engineer, said in a press release.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.