Midwest braces for ‘historic’ winter storm

| 1/31/2011

The National Weather Service, the Federal Emergency Management Administration, and governors of the Midwestern states are telling residents and travelers it?s time to hunker down before a ?historic? winter storm hits.

In Missouri, Gov. Jay Nixon declared a state of emergency in advance of a winter storm expected to blanket most of the state in 18-24 inches of snow. The Missouri Department of Transportation is already warning against travel ? even for professional drivers ? on all interstates, except the southeastern most part of Interstate 55.

The National Weather Service is warning travelers about potentially ?life threatening? conditions in Illinois and Indiana. The NWS warned that travel will become virtually impossible across the region.

The storm is expected to deliver heavy snow and possibly ice accumulation that will be followed by high winds and bitter cold.

?The winds deserve special mention. They are expected to be sustained at 15 to 30 mph with gusts to 60 mph. They will reduce visibility, cause snow to cover previously-plowed lanes, and will make handling high profile vehicles difficult,? MoDOT cautioned in a media advisory.