Snow blankets much of St. Louis area

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by Brendan Marks and Stephanie Baumer / KMOV.com

KMOV.com

Posted on January 1, 2014 at 10:15 AM

Updated Thursday, Jan 2 at 2:22 PM

(KMOV.com) – Snow blanketed much of the News 4 viewing area early Thursday, leaving up to five inches in some parts of the region.

Snow began falling Wednesday and continued into Thursday morning, coating the ground with 2- to 5-inches. 

According to the 4Warn Storm Team, 3 inches of snow fell in St. Peters and Weldon Spring, Mo., while Sorento, Ill. saw about 5.75 inches. Glen Clarbon, Ill. got 4 inches of snow, and 4 inches of snow fell in Troy, Ill.  Nearly 5 inches of snow fell in Hillsboro, Ill. and Litchfield, Ill. reportedly got up to 7 inches.

With the Illinois side of the Mississippi River getting more accumulation in general, the Illinois Department of Transportation said it had about 200 trucks out treating the roads in 11 Metro-East-area counties.

Photos: First snowfall of 2014

As far as public transportation was concerned, the MetroLink was seeing up to 15-minute delays in and out of Lambert Airport due to a switch issue.

Several flights coming in and going out of the airport were also cancelled, with many of them involving departures and arrivals at Cleveland and Chicago.

Click here for the latest flight status/delay/cancellations at Lambert

The fine, powdery snow was almost dry to the touch, and winds of up to 20 mph were whipping it back onto the same roads that crews had cleared. The combination of snow, temperatures in the single digits and teens, and the wind made for treacherous driving.

“Anything below 25 degrees and the salt isn’t nearly as effective,” said Becky Allmeroth, maintenance engineer for the Missouri Department of Transportation’s St. Louis district, where crews were mixing chemicals and beet juice with salt to try and make roads passable. “Since the snow blows so easily and the temperatures are so cold, once it hits the roadway it freezes when it hits the surface.”

Click here for a full detailed forecast

Several accidents were reported. A semi jack-knifed on Interstate 44 near Six Flags St. Louis during the Thursday morning rush hour, shutting down eastbound lanes. Meanwhile, the ramp off of Interstate 64 at Kingshighway in the city was so icy that police had to shut it down for a time, leaving a long line of commuters waiting in the exit lane.

 

Several slide-offs occurred, but Capt. Tim Hull of the Missouri State Highway Patrol said there were no reports of fatalities.

Illinois State Police issued a travel advisory for drivers traveling in southwestern Illinois Thursday morning.

The advisory stated that driving had "become hazardous on Interstate 55, US and State Routes in central and southwestern Illinois.”

Another round of snow is possible Saturday, but should amount to just an inch or two, said Doug Tilly, meteorologist for the National Weather Service in suburban St. Louis. A bigger concern, Tilly said, was the cold.

 

Missouri will see a gradual warm-up into the 40s in many places by Saturday. Then the bottom drops out. Sunday’s high will range from the mid-teens to around 30 degrees.

Tilly said things should start to return to normal by the middle of next week, with highs in the mid-30s.

Here are a number of links to help you throughout the day:

St. Louis-area school closings

For up-to-date information on power outages visit the Ameren Missouri or Ameren Illinois outage maps.

Click here for the KMOV.com Storm Mode page with the latest weather condition updates.

Click here to upload your storm photos and video or e-mail photos to website@kmov.com

Log on to our Facebook page and tell us what the weather is doing where you are.

During weather events, the News 4 Meteorologists are constantly updating our KMOVWeather Twitter feed. The very latest watches and warnings are automatically posted to this feed.  You can view the feed below.

You can also stay aware of any weather threat with radar and forecast updates by downloading the KMOV mobile app!  

Tweets by @KMOVWeather

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