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Major ice storm may make driving impossible on several interstates this weekend


Forecasters are warning drivers to prepare for a severe ice storm that is threatening the south-central part of the country starting on Friday.

A winter storm system developing now is expected to bring thick ice, heavy snow, and rain to a large part of the Southern plains late in the week and into the weekend, making travel tough for many drivers.

Forecasters warn that the heavy storm may make travel difficult on several major trucking routes for the duration of the weekend. Interstates that may be affected in the southern-central states include I-81, I-85, I-40, I-24, I-35, and I-55. Weather experts recommend that truckers who plan to travel cross country over the weekend consider alternate routes further north like I-70 or I-80. Alternately, drivers could also choose routes further south like I-20 or I-10, though there is some risk of flash flooding on portions of these interstates.

On Friday, the storm is expected to bring snow and freezing rain to parts of Texas, Kansas, Missouri, and Oklahoma, making driving difficult if not impossible. Forecasters predict that Amarillo, Texas, Wichita, Kansas, Ponca City, Oklahoma, and Springfield, Missouri, could see as much as 12 inches of snow as a result of this storm.

The storm could also bring flash flooding that would make travel difficult or impossible in Dallas, Houston, Austin and San Antonio, Texas as well as Little Rock, Texarkana and Pine Bluff, Arkansas, and New Orleans, Baton Rouge and Shreveport, Louisiana.

“The effects of the multi-faceted storm, in particular, power and travel, may linger for days in some areas after the last flakes and bits of ice occur. Many of the areas set to receive snow and ice from this storm are ill-equipped to handle a small amount, let alone the amount anticipated from this storm,” said Accuweather’s Maggie Samuhel.

Make sure to monitor the latest forecast before making travel plans this weekend.


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