Warming and snow for weekend in Pittsburgh, then temperatures fall off the cliff



The Pittsburgh area is due for a slight break from the bone-chilling cold, but it will be accompanied by accumulating snow and followed by another arctic blast early next week, according to weather forecasters.

Temperatures will reach the mid-20s on Saturday and Sunday but snow is expected Friday night into Saturday. Accumulations of 1 to 3 inches are expected, said National Weather Service meteorologist Lee Hendricks, with 2 to 4 inches in the higher elevations to the east.

AccuWeather is forecasting 2 to 4 inches during that time, with another accumulating snow possible Sunday night into Monday.

Then the bottom drops out.

The National Weather Service forecasts lows below zero on Monday and Tuesday. Mr. Hendricks said the wind chill could plunge to minus-20 on Tuesday night.

A wind chill advisory is in effect from 7 p.m. today to 10 a.m. Friday, with a forecast low tonight of 3 degrees. Winds will start to increase this morning and the overnight wind chill will be minus-11, according to the weather service. Snow showers are possible today and tonight, with less than an inch of accumulation.

Friday will be sunny with a high of 14 and a wind chill near zero, Mr. Hendricks said.

Through this morning, the average January temperature was running 3.3 degrees below normal. Recorded snowfall for the month is 10.3 inches. A typical January brings about 12 inches to the city.

Allegheny County dispatchers received emergency calls countywide this morning because of the icy conditions, a supervisor there said. Crews had to extricate one person trapped in a vehicle after a crash in O'Hara. That person was taken to a hospital with minor injuries, the supervisor said.

Crashes brought traffic to a standstill in both directions on Interstate 79 near Southpointe in Washington County. Pittsburgh police reported five separate collisions on Route 51 near the West End Circle, and briefly closed the road. A large water main break closed a section of Bausman Street in Pittsburgh's Knoxville section.

Jon Schmitz: jschmitz@post-gazette.com, 412-263-1868 and on Twitter @pgtraffic.


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