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Winter storm warnings in effect as wind, snow hit Utah

Published February 29, 2012 3:17 pm

Storm forecasts • Blankets of new snow for valleys, up to 2 feet in the mountains.
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A snow storm had already dumped several inches of the cold white stuff across northern Utah on Wednesday night, but weather experts predicted more could still be on the way.

From Logan running south through Ogden, Salt Lake City, Park City, Provo and Nephi and extending into eastern Tooele County and central Utah's Price, the National Weather Service issued a winter storm warning that was expected to continue into mid-day Friday.

By no later than 8 p.m. Wednesday ­— and with snow still falling in many places ­— the weather service reported most parts of the Salt Lake Valley had already picked up 3-5 inches of snow. Sandy had picked up 6 inches; Draper and Upper Millcreek areas, 4; and the Park City area 6.5 inches. As of 9:20 p.m., Salt Lake City had officially picked up 4 inches of new snow, the weather service reported. Brighton Crest and Deer Valley had each reported 4 inches of fresh powder.

The snowfall, which accumulated on roadways, started to fall in places just as commuters started to make their way home Wednesday. However, Utah Highway Patrol troopers said, while there were the typical weather-related fender-benders, they weren't aware of any major crashes on state roadways and interstates. Cpl. Todd Johnson said as of 9 p.m., troopers had worked 19 non-injury crashes and 9 slide-offs in Salt Lake County and in Utah County, only four non-injury wrecks and one slide-off.

A less-dramatic winter weather advisory remained in effect through Friday for central and southern Utah's mountains, where 10-18 inches of new snow was forecast. The advisory area encompassed the western desert to Wendover; Milford, Cedar City, Escalante and Bryce Canyon in southern Utah; and mountains just north of Vernal and the Green River area of eastern Utah.

Thursday morning's commute was expected to be icy and dicey.

All that precipitation worried the Utah Avalanche Center's forecasters, too. The western Uintas and Logan were given a "red," or high risk rating for potentially dangerous snow slides; Ogden, Salt Lake City and Provo were graded at "orange," or considerable risk; and southeastern Utah's Moab was "yellow" for moderate risk.

Salt Lake City looked for a high temperature Thursday of 37 degrees; Ogden was pegged at 35; Provo 36; Logan 34; Wendover 36; Duchesne 34; Cedar City 35; St. George 55; and Moab 49 degrees.





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