Weather forecasters say prolonged cold temperatures over the winter could cause this year's spring storm season to get off to a late start as it takes longer for water in the Gulf of Mexico to warm up.
The snow has moved on but dangerous cold settled across Missouri on Monday amid warnings that even a few minutes of exposure was risky.
Gusting winds only made matters worse. By 8 a.m. the temperature in Columbia had plummeted to minus-9 degrees, making it one of the coldest days in decades. Wind chill temperatures today dropped to 30 below zero.
The bitter cold came a day after heavy snow. The St. Louis region got the worst of it — officially 10.8 inches in the city but up to 15 inches in the suburbs. Parts of Columbia received up to 6 inches.
Mid-Missouri drivers are dealing with slippery roads Thursday after a winter storm that dumped two inches of snow in Columbia, according to the National Weather Service.
Across Mid-Missouri, as of 10:00am Thursday morning highways were listed as either covered or partly covered according to the Missouri Department of Transportation’s traveler information map. Check for the latest updates at this link.
Missouri legislators are cutting their work week short because of concerns about a winter storm.
The House and Senate usually meet from Monday until mid-day Thursday each week. But the National Weather Service has issued a winter storm watch from late Wednesday through Thursday for most of Missouri. The forecast calls for a mixture of ice and snow, depending on the location.
Officials are discouraging travel in southeastern Missouri until crews clear the roads from what was expected to be heavy snowfall with blizzard conditions.
The National Weather Service placed 13 counties from the Bootheel to north of Cape Girardeau under a blizzard warning from Tuesday night to midday today. Total accumulations were expected to range from three inches in the Bootheel to 12 inches farther north.