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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883
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Overnight snowfall creates slippery commute Tuesday morning

UPDATED: Tue., Nov. 10, 2020

The National Weather Service expects dry conditions on Wednesday and Thursday in Spokane.  (National Weather Service)
The National Weather Service expects dry conditions on Wednesday and Thursday in Spokane. (National Weather Service)

About 2 inches of snow fell in the Spokane area by Tuesday morning, leaving commuters with a slushy drive to work.

The National Weather Service issued a Winter Weather Advisory early Tuesday morning that was in effect until 10 a.m. However, most of the morning’s snow had already fallen by 7 a.m., said Steve Bodnar, meteorologist at the National Weather Service in Spokane.

“Most of the accumulation is done with for the Spokane area,” Bodnar said. “Light snow is going to fall in the Idaho Panhandle through the morning and early afternoon.”

On average, Spokane was blanketed in 2 inches of snow with some areas outside of Spokane receiving 3 to 3½ inches. The official reading at the Spokane International Airport was 1.7 inches this morning.

The Washington State Department of Transportation had snow plows out in force Tuesday morning on Interstate 90 and up Sunset Hill. Drivers were encouraged to use caution on ice and snow, and to take their drive as slow as conditions require.

The City of Spokane also urged drivers to slow down and drive for conditions Tuesday morning. City plows were out working on arterials with a focus on hills and bridges.

On the Palouse, a semitruck jack-knifed at 7 a.m. on U.S. Highway 195 about 4 miles south of Pullman. The roadway reopened in midmorning, , according to the Spokane Regional Transportation Management Center.

The transportation management center reported many roads leading into Spokane as snow-covered or icy.

Temperatures were expected to warm up throughout the day with a high of 39 degree. South of Spokane, there was a renewed threat of snow in the afternoon and evening, especially between Spokane and Pullman. For the city of Spokane, the evening commute was expected to still have temperatures above freezing.

“We will start to see our temperatures falling below freezing,” Bodnar said. “It won’t be during the evening commute, but overnight our temperatures will be dipping down into the 20s.”

Midweek high temperatures are forecast in the upper 30s with no expectation of snow.

“We do have a chance for some more light snow Thursday night. At this point it looks like about an inch,” Bodnar said. “But our big concern is going to be potential for strong winds on Saturday.”

While Bodnar said there is a lot of uncertainty in the strength of Saturday’s weather system, it has the potential to produce wind gusts in excess of 40 mph.

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