Warm weather and heavy rain could cause flooding

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If you're venturing outdoors, be prepared for winter's worst.

Winds at times could be damaging. Gusts will reach 30 to 40 miles per hour in places as temperatures drop.

The forecast for Friday through Wednesday is calling for continued cold conditions. A strong cold front will push temperatures to below freezing. Starting by mid-afternoon in the St. Lawrence Valley, rain will switch to sleet, snow and freezing rain.

Thomas said that next week will return to "winter time arctic cold", but noted that it won't be as cold as it was around New Years Day. St. Louis woke up Friday to temperatures 40 degrees colder than Thursday morning.

As temperatures drop on Friday, rain will transition to a freezing rain/sleet/snow mix before changing to all snow later in the day.

For the rest of the weekend, the forecast calls for a chance of snow showers Saturday morning with mostly cloudy conditions and a high near 19.

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A band of heavier snow is expected to stretch from near Glacier National Park southeast toward the Lewistown area.

The weather service in Huntsville said a light glaze of ice and up to a half inch of snow will be possible through this evening. Total snow accumulations of 2 to 4 inches are possible.

A flood watch for the region goes into effect Thursday at 7 p.m. and continues until Saturday afternoon, with melting ice and snow and rainfall expected. Most of the Northeast, as far as southern ME should expect rain.

"It's going to come in fast and furious", said Patrick Walsh, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service.

Warming air, combined with rain and snow melt, will present the risk of ice jam flooding. The rain will simply wash off any brine put into place.

In some areas, the amount of ice could cause weak tree limbs to fall, possibly disrupting power lines and triggering power outages, the Weather Channel reported. A period of moderate to locally heavy rain will also move through the area Friday into Saturday. This will result in areas of blowing snow with some brief instances of whiteout conditions.

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