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January 5, 2014

Stormy skies: Snow, extreme cold coming

Severe weather patterns expected to bring snow, extreme cold

A snowstorm coming today may leave wind chills of 40 below zero, a negative 15-degree temperature and more than half a foot of snow in its wake, according to Katie Gross, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in northern Indiana.

The weather service office in northern Indiana on Saturday forecast 10 to 14 inches of snow to blanket Cass County and counties to the north, east and west. The heaviest snowfall is expected today.

A winter storm watch went into effect in the area Saturday evening and remains in effect tonight. The storm is expected to leave behind artic air.

Temperatures will dip starting Monday, when the high is expected to be around negative 15 degrees with 40-below-zero wind child and 25 mph wind gusts.

There will be a slight temperature increase Tuesday, with a high of about negative 4 degrees and 20 mph wind gusts.

Extra caution should be taken when traveling during the winter storm, Cass County Sheriff Randy Pryor said. Drivers should keep fuel in the car and carry a fully charged cell phone and alert authorities if there is car trouble, he said.

Miami County Sheriff Tim Miller also shared information about the potential severe weather that has been predicted. In addition to having necessary items in vehicles during a severe storm, items like medication, food, water and heating fuel should be kept in households, Miller said.

With cold temperatures, extra items should be kept in the vehicle, too like blankets, fuel-line deicer, an ice scraper, a snow shovel and extra clothes.

If a vehicle gets stuck, a driver should turn on hazard lights and check to make sure the exhaust pipe is uncovered.

Deputies from the Cass and Miami sheriffs' departments will be patrolling in the designated counties looking for vehicles in distress.

“When temperature gets down, any amount of snow on the roadway will make traveling dangerous,” Pryor said. “These are pretty severe temperatures and people should say close to home and take it easy.”

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