Residents cope with snow; more expected

ELKINS – Although the region is still blanketed by the snow that fell during this week’s winter storms, residents are in for a bit more of the white stuff today, officials said.

Following the massive snowfall Wednesday night and Thursday, more systems carrying additional snow are scheduled to hit the area throughout the weekend.

John Victory, staff meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Charleston, reported two more systems heading towards Elkins and much of Randolph County, including a significant winter storm through this morning and a smaller system tonight.

“You can expect about three to five inches of snow in the valley Friday night,” Victory said. “Elkins is closer to three inches with higher accumulations in the higher ridges around Elkins.”

Victory added that the storm tonight will not result in much accumulation.

“Another much weaker system will come through, which, right now, doesn’t look to be a big deal, maybe an inch or so,” Victory said.

Temperatures will remain cold, but not polar like they have been recently- the NWS is calling for lows in the 20s through most of the weekend.

“Temperatures will be cold but not like they were the last few weeks,” Victory said.

Tonight will be the coldest, due to the snow pack, with temperatures falling into the mid-teens overnight, he said.

Temperatures are scheduled to start warming up Sunday and into next week with highs of 32 degrees Sunday, 44 degrees Monday, 44 degrees Tuesday and temperatures in the 50s on Wednesday.

Rain is scheduled for the area during the latter portion of next week, Victory said.

Many public schools in the area, including those in Barbour, Grant, Pocahontas, Randolph, Tucker and Upshur counties, were once again closed on Friday due to the weather.

Upshur County was expected to receive about two to four inches of snow through today, said Jim Farrell, public information officer for the Upshur County Office of Emergency Management.

“It’s going to be more of an annoyance than anything else,” Farrell said Friday. “There are still some roads that are difficult to travel here, but the main roads are all in decent shape.”

Flooding is not expected to happen immediately, if at all, Farrell said.

“We’re trying to calculate if there might be flooding, but it wouldn’t be tomorrow (Saturday),” Farrell said, adding that rain is in the forecast for Monday.

Farrell said flooding would depend on how fast the snow melts and where it runs off.

According to the National Weather Service website, Upshur County is under a winter weather advisory that will continue through 10 a.m. today. Additional snow is predicted throughout the weekend, and Monday could bring with it a snow and rain mix. The rain could continue on Tuesday.

The forecast is much the same in Barbour County.

Barbour OEM Director Cindy Hart said there had not been any major accidents relative to the weather in Barbour County following the major snowfall.

“It’s almost scary,” Hart said. “It’s like the calm before the storm kind of thing.”

She said the National Weather Service has reported that Barbour County will receive 2-4 inches of snow through today.

“I haven’t heard a whole lot about it today, so I’m hoping that it’s going to stay east of us,” Hart said.

By 4:30 p.m. Friday, Hart said the main roads were clear and the side roads were passable.

“The Department of Highways has been working day and night to get the main roads open,” Hart said.

The Barbour County OEM will monitor for flooding, with rain predicted for next week.

“I think there’s a lot of potential, but with the warm weather that we’ve had today, I think the temperatures are going to steadily increase, and at night, of course, it’ll freeze back down,” Hart said. “If we get a lot of rain and the ground is already wet (flooding is possible). At this point it is just hard to tell.”