Major winter storm hits Southern Utah

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A winter pushed its way into the southern portion of the state Wednesday night.

A powerful storm system along the Pacific Northwest Coast developed a strong jet stream and pulled moisture off the Pacific Ocean over the top of cold air that has established itself in Utah’s Dixie and other areas of Southern and Eastern Utah.

The result is a significant accumulating storm for St. George and the metro area throughout Washington Counties lower elevations. Higher elevation valleys and mountains saw heavier snowfall, leading to difficult and almost impossible travel conditions.

Those planning to travel from late Wednesday through Thursday Night should plan for difficult driving (including the Virgin River Gorge).

Other areas that will be hit include, the San Rafael Swell, the Grand Staircase Escalante, the Glen Canyon National Recreation Area, and Lake Powell. Eventually, major snow accumulations will move into the Four Corners region, including Bluff, Blanding, Monticello, and Moab…as well as Price. 

 This is a multi-day event—-the winter storm warning goes into effect at 5 p.m. Wednesday and will stay in effect until 9 a.m. Friday. The heaviest snow expected Wednesday evening through early Thursday morning. 

HOW MUCH SNOW IS EXPECTED?

  • St. George 3-7″
  • Valleys above 4,000 ft: 6-12″
  • Mountains: 12-24″
  • Cedar City: 6-9″
  • Lake Powell: 4-8″
  • SE Utah Valleys: 5-10″
  • Blanding/Monticello: 10-20″
  • I-70 Corridor: 7-14″

HOW RARE ARE WINTER STORM WARNINGS FOR ST. GEORGE?  

The National Weather Service says the last winter storm warning for St. George was issued on December 7, 2013. The agency says it has issued 7 since 2005. 
 

Meteorologist Alana Brophy is in Southern Utah tracking this major winter storm and will be providing updates through the day Wednesday both on-air and online on our facebook page at https://www.facebook.com/abc4utah/. The rest of the pinpoint weather team will be breaking down the forecast all day long as well.

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