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Three winter storms take aim at area through Monday

Just as the ice has disappeared from streets in the Kansas City area, and temperatures are hitting the 50s Wednesday and Thursday, forecasters are warning of a snowy four or five days beginning Friday.

Residents of Kansas and Missouri should expect Winter Storm Warnings through the weekend that will see three large winter storms blast the area.

The difference between these storms and last weekend’s storm is that instead of beginning as rain, which decreases snow levels, temps through this weekend will be in the low to mid-20s ensuring that all the precipitation will fall as snow with heavy accumulations across the region expected.

Fox4 TV meteorologist Joe Lauria estimates that once the three storms moved out of the area by Tuesday, between 8 and 12 inches of heavy, wet snow will have blanketed the region.

The National Weather Service in Pleasant Hill says Friday is the first storm to watch.

A cold front arrives Thursday with temps quickly dropping through the day leaving folks celebrating Valentine’s dealing with freezing temps and blustery winds by evening.

Snow moves in Friday afternoon with a “developing swath of snow extending from Montana, down across the Dakotas, and across the northern half of Missouri. Within this swath, models are in fairly good agreement,” the National Weather Service states.

A heavy band of snow sets up over eastern Kansas through the Kansas City metro east along I-70.  Local forecasters are saying 3-4 inches are possible with this first round with lighter amounts to the north and south of this band. Southern Missouri should see sleet and more freezing rain. Heavier snow is possible in eastern Missouri.

After snow moves out Saturday morning, residents will barely get a breath before the second storms moves on Saturday night into Sunday morning.

KCTV5 Weather says that Friday’s storm is just a preview to the feature presentation of Saturday and Sunday’s snowstorm. That storm, which will be better organized, will bring higher amounts and even colder temps.

Meteorologist Brett Anthony says this storm becomes an upper level low pressure system over the Midwest with potential for a more dangerous storm.  “That means it’s stronger, has more spin, which creates more lift, will take longer to move through the region and in the end, this kind of system usually produces more snow,” Anthony says.

The final storm moves through Sunday night into Monday, with the final flakes leaving the area by Tuesday morning. This storm will be more like Friday’s with 2-4 inches falling across the region, possibly causing widespread school closings because of the slick conditions from the previous two storms.

KCTV also estimates that up to 12 inches of snow could blanket parts the area between the three storms.

All three storms promise to leave KDOT and MODOT crews busy, not to mention resources of regional cities being stretched with three storms in quick succession.

Parents should plan for schools across the area to be closed on Monday.