Fort Worth

Snow, freezing rain on the way. Where driving will be difficult Thursday

Freezing rain hits Fort Worth causing traffic problems

Police close several flyovers at the intersection of Loop 820 and I-35W because of freezing rain and accidents in Fort Worth, TX, Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019.
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Police close several flyovers at the intersection of Loop 820 and I-35W because of freezing rain and accidents in Fort Worth, TX, Wednesday, Jan. 2, 2019.

Snow is a rarity in North Texas but there’s a good chance we’ll see a few flakes on Thursday.

The day will start out with a cold rain — and freezing rain for some north and west of Fort Worth — then transition to snow Thursday afternoon.

“We should start seeing snow in the Fort Worth area sometime after lunchtime in the Fort Worth area,” said National Weather Service meteorologist Jason Godwin. “Right now, it doesn’t look like a whole lot of accumulation.”

But it could be close.

Temperatures are expected to stay just above freezing in the Fort Worth area Thursday afternoon so places just off to the northwest could have some travel issues.

“If you’re traveling north and west of Fort Worth, especially to the northwest along U.S. 287 toward Wichita Falls, you could see some accumulations,” Godwin said.

Much like Wednesday morning, there could also be icing on overpasses in northwest Tarrant County Thursday as well as parts of Parker and Wise counties.

A winter weather advisory remains in effect for counties north and west of Fort Worth until Friday morning. But a winter storm warning starts at 3 a.m. Thursday and continues until 6 a.m. Friday for Montague, Young and Jack counties where 3 to 5 inches of snow could fall. A winter storm warning means significant amounts of snow, sleet and ice will make travel hazardous or impossible.

“It will be interesting to see how it evolves on Thursday,” Godwin said. “The good news for us in Fort Worth is it does look like our temperatures should stay above freezing — but not by much.”

On Wednesday, there were 51 minor and major accidents from 5 a.m. until noon on Fort Worth streets and highways, according to police reports, a significant jump from the 21 during the same period on New Year’s Day. Of the 51 accidents on Wednesday, 12 involved injuries, according to a MedStar official.

At Dallas-Fort Worth International Airport, there were 34 flight cancellations and 246 flight delays as of 4 p.m. Wednesday, according the website flightaware.com.

Travel was discouraged about 120 miles west of Fort Worth on Wednesday, where the Texas Department of Transportation’s Abilene office was advising against travel on Interstate 20 from Putnam all the way to Big Spring due to black ice. There were also issues on Texas 36 , U.S. 277 and U.S. 83 south of Abilene.

Closer to home, TxDot’s Fort Worth district will have 140 vehicles ready to respond to icy conditions. The Fort Worth district covers nine counties, including Tarrant, Parker, Wise, Palo Pinto and Jack counties.

“Our crews will be ready in case those temperatures do dip in the morning,” said Michael Peters, a TxDot spokesman.

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Bill Hanna is an award-winning reporter who has covered just about every beat at the Star-Telegram. He currently covers Arlington but also writes about a variety of subjects including weather, wildlife, traffic and health.

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