After several days of mild temperatures, South Mississippi residents once again prepared themselves for a hard freeze.
The National Weather Service in Slidell issued a hard freeze warning from 6 p.m. Saturday until 10 a.m. Sunday. The wind chill Saturday night was expected to dip as low as 15 degrees.
Sunday’s high is only expected to reach the upper 40s, and Monday should warm slightly before another cold front moves through Tuesday.
There’s a very slight chance of a wintry mix of sleet and light snow with Tuesday’s cold front. There is a 20 percent chance of showers during the day, rising 30 percent at night. Tuesday night’s low is expected to be in the mid 20s, so any moisture moving through by the time temperatures drop near freezing could produce a wintry mix.
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A high-pressure area is behind the cold front, so temperatures are likely to stay chilly for a few days. Wednesday’s high may reach 40 with an overnight low again in the 20s. Thursday should start to slowly warm, with highs above 60 by Saturday.
The forecast comes days after winter weather including ice and slow blanketed portions of Mississippi. The Clarion Ledger reports that ice was reported in the counties of Alcorn, Benton, Bolivar, Coahoma, DeSoto, Holmes, Lafayette, Leflore, Marshall, Panola, Quitman, Sunflower, Tallahatchie, Tate, Tippah, Tunica, Union and Washington.
Motorists are urged to be cautious across the Mid-South, which includes north Mississippi, western Tennessee and eastern Arkansas, after a mix of light snow and sleet fell overnight Friday — causing a lot of icy roads.
Meteorologist Marlene Mickelson of the National Weather Service in Memphis says anywhere from 1 to 3 inches of snow fell, with the heaviest accumulations reported south of the Tennessee-Mississippi border in Alcorn, Hernando and DeSoto counties. She says flurries continued into Saturday but weren't causing any additional accumulations.
But with temperatures staying below freezing, she says not a lot of melting is occurring. In addition, she says residents in the area can look forward to more significant snow falls on Monday.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.
How to take care of your vehicle when temperatures are below freezing
- Make sure you have an ice scraper in your vehicle.
- Cold weather reduces tire pressure, so check tire pressure often. See your owner’s manual for directions and details.
- In severe winter temperatures, you may have to change the grade of your engine oil. Check your owner’s manual for the viscosity grade recommended for your vehicle’s engine.
- Check your wiper blades. Cold temperatures can make blades brittle, and ice on the windshield can cause nicks in the blades, decreasing performance.