We got a break overnight from car pile-ups and ice-glazed windshields; streets were mostly safe and clear Saturday morning. But the National Weather Service in Wichita says brace yourself for late afternoon.
“Things will start getting a little nasty tonight,” said Eric Metzger, a meteorologist with the weather service. “Between 5 and 8 tonight we’ll start getting our first shot today of consistent freezing rain.”
It’ll start in Harper, Sumner and Kingman counties, he said. “Then it’ll come to us, and move slowly north.”
Most of us in Wichita will see a quarter to a half-inch of glazed ice, he said. It’ll be a lot worse north of here. “We’re most worried bout Dodge City, Hays, Great Bend, Larned, Russell, Lincoln, and maybe as far south as Hutchinson, we’re looking toward as much as an inch of ice,” he said. “That’s where the heaviest of the ice will be.”
Things will start getting a little nasty tonight.
Eric Metzger, meteorologist
As of 8:30 a.m. Saturday, the hardest hit areas closest to Wichita are in Oklahoma. “And I’m feeling pretty sorry for them right now,” Metzger said. The main area of the storm that will aggravate us the most was still hovering over El Paso, Texas, in the early daylight hours, but is moving here slowly, he said.
We won’t be done with this until perhaps Monday afternoon, he said. The precipitation will turn to rain for us, and perhaps snow on top of all that ice in western Kansas.
Twenty cars got hit in a chain reaction accident on Kellogg near the Wichita business district on Friday night, when the icy rain first started. Authorities said three people suffered minor injuries.
The ice mostly let up after that, and Wichitans awoke to find streets reasonably safe, many of the main roads pre-treated with salt brine by public works employees. But authorities are warning us to stay off the streets unless we have emergencies to deal with.
Keep checking here. Kansas.com will update weather and public safety throughout the weekend as news develops.