Oh, the weather this week is frightful. But a chance of snow might be delightful. And though the chances here are low. Let it snow! Let it snow! Let it — flurry?
Cold weather is sweeping through Florida and bringing a chance of snow early Wednesday ahead of freezing rain north of Gainesville, meteorologist Nate McGinnis with the National Weather Service in Jacksonville says.
But, McGinnis warns, there’s only a slight chance of snow.
“I’m not going to be the Debbie Downer and say there’s going to be no flakes in Florida because there could be,” McGinnis said. “But we’re not anticipating snow.”
The National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning for parts of North Florida, and Gov. Rick Scott urged residents and tourists to prepare. Several school districts canceled classes Wednesday, and Scott said transportation crews are spraying roads and bridges with a salt solution in anticipation of the wintry weather.
Orlando, which hasn’t gotten measurable snow since 1977, almost certainly will not get any flurries. But it will be cold. Orlando is forecast to reach freezing temperatures — 32 degrees — and experience winds that will feel like it’s in the upper 20s later in the week.
The last time core Orlando temperatures reached freezing was four years ago, in January 2014.
Wednesday will be cold and wet, with a 70 percent chance of rain and highs in the 50s.
“It’s really going to be an icky day,” meteorologist Jessie Smith said.
Freezing temperatures are expected Thursday and Friday. Saturday will be just above freezing, with a low of 35.
Meteorologists with the National Weather Service in Melbourne spent Tuesday dispelling rumors of snow flurries in Central Florida on Monday night. Residents took to social media to show off what they thought was snow on their windows, but was likely mist, Smith said. The lows — in the 50s — weren’t cold enough for snow, Smith said.
“Most likely people thought they were seeing snow flurries and it’s exciting. It doesn’t snow often in Florida,” Smith said. “We took a look … there’s just no way.”
This winter has been anything but normal throughout the country. Some states have endured record-breaking lows and sub-freezing temperatures. Even southern parts of the country that aren’t familiar with snow have gotten some, including coastal parts of South Texas. The Florida Panhandle got snow in early December. Snowfall this week would be even less.
Orlando and its surrounding areas will begin to warm up early next week. Monday is expected to bring highs in the mid-70s.
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by Krista Torralva – orlandosentinel.com