It must be spring — or almost — in Ohio.
Temperatures soared to the high 70s earlier in the week, then dipped below freezing by Thursday morning. In between, there were fierce thunderstorms, torrential rains, howling winds and a tornado watch.
Then, just as you thought the weather was going to settle down, the National Weather Service in Wilmington issued flood warnings for the Scioto River at Piketon as well as the Ohio River at Portsmouth.
If that weren’t enough — and you thought winter had finally given way to spring — now the weather service has issued a Winter Storm Watch for southern Ohio and northeastern Kentucky, which forecasts as much as 3 to 4 inches of snow by Saturday night and temperatures plunging to the low 20s by Sunday morning.
To be sure, the life of an Ohio meteorologist is one of constant change.
The Wilmington office of the National Weather Service serves Portsmouth and the surrounding county. A Wilmington meteorologist recently predicted dry weather after Tuesday night, with temperatures reaching the 50s. He predicted a chance of showers for the weekend, with temperatures near the freezing mark. However, at the time, he also added there was almost no chance of snow.
Because of recent unpredictable weather, The Daily Times has contacted the weather service for forecasts several times in the past several weeks. On one occasion, a meteorologist predicted one more round of snow, with no further white stuff falling this spring. It snowed two days later. On another occasion, the weather service predicted a dry weekend. By Friday of that week, there was plenty of rain. On Tuesday, a meteorologist said his office was too busy for him to go into why forecasts can sometimes seem largely inaccurate.
“Things change,” he said. “This time of year, things can be very unpredictable.”
The latest alert from the NWS is a Winter Storm Watch for southern Ohio and northeastern Kentucky from late today through late Saturday.
Heavy snow is possible, with accumulations of 3 to 4 inches. Localized amounts up to 6 inches are possible.
The NWS warns motorists to plan on difficult travel conditions with significant reductions in visibility and rapid snow accumulation.
A Winter Storm Watch means there is potential for significant snow, sleet or ice accumulations that may impact travel.
Reach Lynn Adams at 740-353-3101 ext. 1927