Winter Storm Fisher Spreading Snow, Ice Across Southern Plains Through Thursday

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Winter Storm Fisher Means Snow and Ice for TX, OK
  • Fisher is bringing snow and ice to parts of Oklahoma and Texas.
  • This includes the Oklahoma City metro and areas northwest of Dallas/Fort Worth.
  • Dangerous travel conditions are possible from Oklahoma to northwest Texas.
  • Fisher brought snow to the Southwest earlier this week.

Winter Storm Fisher will continue to bring a mess of snow, sleet and freezing rain to parts of Oklahoma and northwest Texas through Thursday night.

Happening Now

Fisher is currently producing a mix of freezing rain, sleet and snow from parts of northwest Texas into central Oklahoma.

As colder air from Fisher’s low-pressure system moves into the southern Plains Thursday, many areas will see this mixture of wintry precipitation transition to snow, possibly heavy at times. This includes from Oklahoma City southward toward Ardmore, Oklahoma, and Wichita Falls, Texas.

Icy conditions from Fisher on Wednesday caused accidents near Fort Worth, Texas, Norman, Oklahoma, and Tulsa, Oklahoma. You can find more information on those reports at the bottom of this article.

Current Radar

(Snow over some mountainous terrain may not show up on this image due to blocking of radar beams by terrain.)

Winter storm warnings have been issued by the National Weather Service from central Oklahoma into northwest Texas, including Oklahoma City and Wichita Falls, Texas.

Winter weather advisories extended across a broader region from west-central Texas into eastern Oklahoma and far northwest Arkansas.

Winter Weather Alerts

(From the National Weather Service.)

Forecast Timing

Thursday-Thursday night

Additional cold air and more lift from Fisher’s low-pressure system will arrive in the southern Plains on Thursday.

As a result, many locations from northwest Texas into central Oklahoma will see precipitation transition over to snow. The snow could be heavy at times, including along Interstate 35 in central and southern Oklahoma, Interstate 40 in central Oklahoma and Interstate 44 in central and southwest Oklahoma.

This wintry mess may linger into Thursday night over parts of Oklahoma and far southeast Kansas.

Thursday’s Forecast

(The green shadings depict where rain is possible. Areas that are shaded blue may see snow. Purple-shaded locations may see either rain or snow. Areas in pink could see sleet or freezing rain (ice).)

Friday-Saturday

We expect mainly rain from Fisher as it moves toward the Ohio Valley and East Friday and Saturday. That said, there could be just enough cold air for pockets of snow, sleet or ice in the higher terrain of the Appalachians, upstate New York and northern New England.

(MAPS: Daily U.S. Rain and Snow Forecasts)

Snow and Ice Forecast

Several inches of snow, potentially on top of a layer of accumulated sleet or ice, is expected from northwestern Texas to southwestern and central Oklahoma.

A few areas may pick up 6 inches or more of snow, dependent on the track of the upper-level system.

The majority of this snow should fall now through Thursday night.

Southern Plains Ice and Snow Recap

Light freezing rain was reported at Alliance Airport in Fort Worth, Texas, early Wednesday morning. Multiple crashes were reported in icy conditions north of the Metroplex in Denton near the vicinity of Interstate 35 and North Loop 288.

Light thunder freezing rain and thundersleet were reported Wednesday evening from Lubbock, Texas, to the Oklahoma City metro area.

Traffic was snarled Wednesday evening as freezing rain made roads slick and, in some spots, dangerous, such as in Norman, Oklahoma.

The icy conditions also contributed to crashes in the Tulsa, Oklahoma, metro area Wednesday night, according to tulsaworld.com.

A light glaze of ice was reported Wednesday evening in southeastern Oklahoma, including in Durant, and as far east as Fayetteville, Arkansas.

Southwest Snow Recap

Winter Storm Fisher brought snow to the Southwest and southern Rockies Dec. 31-Jan. 2 as the jet stream dug through the Great Basin and into Arizona and New Mexico.

Several sites in New Mexico reported a foot to as much as 3 feet of snow, including the Pajarito Ski Area (9,000 feet in elevation) near Los Alamos.

Parts of the Albuquerque metro area saw 2 to 6 inches of snowfall. Drifts of 3 to 5 feet were witnessed on the east side of Albuquerque near the Sandia Mountains due to snow and wind, not just from this event, but also from the post-Christmas snow event there.

A six-vehicle pileup led to one fatality and at least one injury on Interstate 40 in Albuquerque, New Mexico, according to KRQE.com. A New Mexico State Patrol officer was investigating a crash when a semi-truck slid on icy roads and hit the officer’s vehicle and injured the officer. Then, a tow truck pulled up on the scene as another semi ran into the tow truck, killing the driver of the tow truck. The interstate reopened 10 hours later.

A foot of snow fell in just over four hours New Year’s Eve night in Greer, Arizona, in the White Mountains at an elevation of about 8,300 feet.

Snow blanketed lower elevations in Arizona as well.

Tucson International Airport picked up a quick 0.4 inches of snow New Year’s morning, its first measurable snow in almost 6 years, last occurring on Feb. 20, 2013. Parts of the Tucson area received additional snow on Jan. 2, though nothing was officially recorded at the airport.

Up to 5 inches of snow was estimated to have fallen near the border between Arizona and Mexico in Nogales as of early Jan. 2.

Below are select snowfall totals from Fisher in the Southwest.

  • Arizona: 14.1 inches at Pinetop-Lakeside; 5 inches in Nogales
  • Colorado: 18.9 inches near Pagosa Springs; 4.5 inches near Durango
  • New Mexico: 36 inches at the Pajarito Ski Area (9,000 feet in elevation); 24.4 inches near Los Alamos; 2 to 6 inches in the Albuquerque metro area
  • Utah: 6 inches in Monument Valley

2019-01-03 10:41:15

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