Snow expected to hit region, but accumulation is still up in the air
Butler County residents will likely wake up Monday morning to a brand new blanket of snow.
The Weather Channel predicted Thursday that snowfall in the region could reach 8 to10 inches Monday.
Jenna Lake, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service Pittsburgh, said Sunday will get increasingly cold until it builds up to snowfall in the evening. While the weather service doesn’t have a prediction for how much will accumulate, Lake said it will probably snow through Monday morning.
“The way the track is modeled, we should see some heavy accumulation,” Lake said. “It’ll be cold Saturday and cold Sunday; it's likely in the time frame from Sunday to Monday evening.”
PennDOT treats state-owned roads throughout the county, and some individual municipalities have their own snow treatment policies for roads.
The City of Butler Streets Department also treats 53 miles of city roads. Snowfall accumulation of more than an inch-and-a-half is plowed, and snowfall accumulation of an inch to an inch-and-a-half or less are salted. When plowing residential streets, the objective is to plow the traffic lanes clear of snow for safe passage of vehicles and emergency equipment, according to a fact sheet on the city’s website.
According to Lake, the weekend temperatures will remain relatively steady around the freezing point throughout the day Friday, Saturday and Sunday — but will drop to around 20 degrees Sunday evening.
Some wind will come along with the cold system, Lake said, which contributes to the formation of the snowy cloud system.
“The system is still developing, it still has to go through Canada, Minnesota, down through Alabama and then here,” Lake said. “If it's still in the strengthening stage, the wind forecast is really to be determined, as well as the snow. We're really going to have to see how things pan out.”
Although the weather service doesn’t have a prediction for how much snow will accumulate, Lake said Butler residents may be able to make snow people with the moist snow coming to the area.
“If we're below freezing, but there's a lot of moisture and our temperatures are in the upper 20s, that would give us a higher amount of snow,” Lake said. “If it's warmer and wetter, we see a lot of compaction. If it's colder, we get more water content.”