Area snow totals less than initially predicted

Photo by Becky Polaski – City crews were out plowing and treating the roads during Winter Storm Harper on Saturday afternoon.
By: 
Becky Polaski
Staff Writer

With initial forecasts calling for roughly a foot and a half of snow over the weekend, area residents braced for Winter Storm Harper. However, by the time the storm moved out early Sunday morning, actual snow totals ended up being much less than predicted.
Still, given the forecast headed into the weekend, some, including both local high schools, opted to cancel planned activities rather than give people a reason to risk traveling in potentially unsafe conditions.
The St. Marys Area School District cancelled all of its scheduled weekend activities, including the Snowball Dance that was set to be held on Saturday at St. Marys Area High School. The dance has been rescheduled for Saturday, Feb. 2.
Across town, the Elk County Catholic High School Athletic Association’s January meeting and bingo, both of which were scheduled to be held Sunday at ECCHS, were also cancelled.
According to a release from PennDOT, speed limits were reduced to 45 miles-per-hour on many of the state’s interstates on Saturday afternoon, including I-80 from the Ohio state line to I-99. A commercial vehicle ban also went into effect at noon on Saturday for the Pennsylvania Turnpike and many of the state’s interstates, including I-80.
On Saturday evening, the National Weather Service issued an update at 7 p.m. indicating that the expected snowfall for areas within Elk County was between seven to eight inches.
According to data available on the National Weather Service’s website, www.weather.gov, a co-op observer in Glen Hazel reported that area had received eight inches of snow from the storm as of 7 a.m. Sunday morning. That was the only data available for Elk County.
Nearby, a co-op observer in Kane reported that area received 10.1 inches of snow.
As the snow moved out, colder temperatures moved in, and as of noon on Sunday a Wind Chill Warning was in effect until 7 p.m. today with the potential for wind chills to reach as low as 30 degrees below zero.
Additional information on the current forecast can be found online at www.weather.gov

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