SHORT STAY IS FORCASTED….It’s still snowing in Bisbee but the sun is shining in Tucson and I-40 and I-17 re-opened Thursday morning after Wednesday afternoon road closures when the first wave of a winter-weather system swept through the state Wednesday, lashing the Valley with rain, dumping deep snow in the high country and paralyzing Arizona’s major north-south route. Southbound Interstate 17 was re-opened about 10:30 a.m. Thursday after being closed just south of Flagstaff on Wednesday. Interstate 40 from Kingman to Flagstaff and on to Holbrook was reopened Thursday afternoon after being closed for several hours. In addition, Arizona 260, Arizona 87 and 89A have all been closed, and officials are not sure when they might be re-opened.
The second chapter of the winter blast was set to hit Arizona today, as precipitation tapers off and temperatures start to plunge. High temperatures for Thursday are expected to reach 49 degrees, well below our average high of 67 degrees. Friday morning’s low is expected to dip to 29 degrees at the official weather station at Phoenix Sky Harbor International Airport – cold enough to damage plants and even burst water pipes, according to the National Weather Service. The lows on Friday and Saturday mornings are likely to be the coldest since January 2007.
Snow accumulations of eight to 18 inches above 6,000 feet and two to eight inches between 2,800 and 6,000 feet are predicted. Motorists in Southern Arizona should be prepared for winter weather and deteriorating road conditions. The warning covers the upper Santa Cruz River Valley, the Altar Valley, metro Tucson, the upper San Pedro River Valley and Eastern Cochise County below 5,000 feet
Tonight: Snow showers likely before 11pm. Areas of frost after 2am. Otherwise, partly cloudy, with a low around 20. Breezy, with a west wind 26 to 29 mph decreasing to between 10 and 13 mph. Winds could gust as high as 46 mph. Chance of precipitation is 60%. New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches possible.
Friday: A 10 percent chance of snow showers after 11am. Areas of frost before 8am. Otherwise, mostly sunny, with a high near 24. West wind between 9 and 14 mph.
Tonight: A slight chance of rain and snow showers before 8pm, then a slight chance of snow showers between 8pm and 11pm. Areas of frost after 2am. Otherwise, partly cloudy, with a low around 28. West wind 14 to 17 mph becoming south 6 to 9 mph. Winds could gust as high as 28 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Friday: Areas of frost before 8am. Otherwise, mostly sunny, with a high near 46. Calm wind becoming west between 6 and 9 mph.
New Year’s Day: Mostly sunny, with a high near 51. Light north northwest wind.
The same storm created 100 mph gusts when it blew through California’s High Sierra and overturned semis in Nevada.
TUCSON WEATHER FRIDAY …COLD and PARTLY CLOUDY
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