Rachael Van Horn
Woodward, Okla. —
Drivers in northwest Oklahoma woke to a thin layer of ice on their vehicles and bitter temperatures as they headed off to work before the weekend.
Oklahoma Department of Transportation sand and salt trucks were out and about early in the 20 degree weather spreading a light layer of sand to provide traction on the slick, ice coated asphalt.
According to the National Weather Service of Norman, light, freezing precipitation could continue through the night, especially in the panhandle. The high was 26 degrees in Woodward, but never reached more than 24 in the panhandle, according to weather station data.
The snow event is being driven by a winter storm system known as Boreas. Boreas originated in the Gulf and is estimated to leave behind heavy snowfall in Flagstaff, Ariz., many parts of Colorado and the mountains of New Mexico. While the prediction model has the panhandle in the direct path tonight, the system appears to push south into Texas and then could create an ice storm in southern parts of Oklahoma, according to NWS.
Temperatures will remain in the 20s tonight, with the temperature in Woodward estimated to hover around 28 in Woodward and 23 in the panhandle. There is a 40 percent chance of a winter mix of snow and rain. The possibility of power outages looms if the regions receives more rain than sleet.
The forecast for Saturday includes a slight break from the bitter temperatures with the day calling for sunny skies and a warm up to 36 degrees. However, Saturday evening will cool down again to 20 and again, another small system will offer an 80 percent chance of snow showers for Sunday.
The extended forecast includes a warming trend and by next weekend, locals can return to outdoor activities as temperatures are expected to be in the low 50s.