The Star Beacon; Ashtabula, Ohio

Local News

March 12, 2014

After balmy days, winter will return

Storm warning in effect for Ashtabula County into Thursday

Folks lulled into an early sense of spring the past few days can expect a cold, snowy dose of reality today and tonight, experts say.

Ashtabula County and the rest of northeast Ohio are under a winter storm warning that began early this morning and not scheduled to expire until 2 a.m. Thursday, according to the National Weather Service. Several inches of snow, blowing snow and subzero wind chills are predicted.

The harsh weather will be harder to take, coming on the heels of days when the thermometer climbed into the 50s and sunny skies gave hope that spring — just nine days away — wasn’t just an urban legend. Monday’s high temperature reached 57 degrees at the NWS’ Cleveland office, 13 degrees above the average for that date.

Rain and sleet this morning is expected to transform into snow after noon. Temperatures will fall from the 30s to the low 20s by 5 p.m., according to the NWS. Winds could gust to 40 miles an hour by early tonight, causing blowing snow and visibility problems for drivers.

Temperatures will tumble to 2 degrees tonight, but those strong winds will create wind chills that feel like minus 14 degrees, according to forecasts. Thursday brings no improvement, with high temperatures in the teens and more dangerous, subzero wind chills.

Relief comes Friday, when temperatures will climb into the mid-30s, the NWS says.

After a rocky start, March had leveled out somewhat, weather-wise. As of Monday, the Cleveland office had seen only one-quarter of an inch of snow (.60 inches off the usual pace) and an average temperature of 26.5 degrees, about 8.4 degrees below normal.

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