Some parts of the northern Miami Valley — including Clark and Champaign counties — could be blanketed with up to eight inches of snow by the end of the day Wednesday.
It’s the first March snowfall of 2 inches or more since 2008, when 15 inches fell during a two-day span.
Storm Center 7 Meteorologist Rich Wirdzek said a mix of sleet and rain will arrive in the area after sunrise today and continue through late afternoon moving south to north.
“The daylight hours (today) will be manageable as most roads will be just wet,” he said.
By late afternoon, a north wind will kick up, bringing in colder air and changing all precipitation over to snow, Wirdzek said. “Road conditions will become worse after sunset.”
Snow totals of 4 to 8 inches are expected north of the Interstate 70 corridor, with between 2 and 4 inches predicted south of there.
Snow will continue overnight and taper down through Wednesday morning.
A winter storm watch is in effect in Champaign, Clark, Mercer, Auglaize, Darke, Shelby, Logan and Miami counties from this afternoon through Wednesday afternoon because of the potential for significant snow, sleet or ice accumulations that may effect travel.
Clark County Engineer Johnathan Burr said it is difficult to pre-treat or salt roads in advance with a storm that starts out as rain.
“You really can’t do anything until it starts switching over to freezing,” he said. The county’s trucks were loaded and ready to go Monday, and Burr said he was monitoring weather forecasts closely.
“There’s still a lot of discrepancy about what this storm is going to bring,” he said.
While most forecasts called for snowfall in the range of 4 to 8 inches to the north, there was some disagreement among forecasters on Monday as to how much snow would fall south of Interstate 70.
The National Weather Service forecast called for 2 to 4 inches of accumulation in Dayton, while Accuweather.com predicted 3 to 6 inches in the area.
The same storm system could dump as much as a foot of snow on parts of West Virgina, Maryland and Virgina on Wednesday into Thursday with between 3 and 6 inches expected in Washington D.C., according to Accuweather.com forecasts.