2013-12-05 / Front Page

Storm poised to blanket county in ice and snow

By Dan Tucker

A strong Arctic cold front entered central California and the Sierra foothills on Tuesday, starting with a brief but soaking rainfall.

Temperatures plunged around the county Tuesday night as residents awoke Wednesday morning to icy conditions and thermometers with readings in the 20s.

According to the National Weather Service (NWS), a winter storm is poised to blanket the county with snow on Friday and Saturday, while temperatures remain very cold.

NWS is forecasting a slight possibility of snow during the day Friday, with snow likely overnight (60 percent) and lingering into Saturday.

Accumulations could range from one to six inches at the 4,000 foot mark and the snow level Friday night is expeced to drop to 1,000 feet.

Wet roadways and freezing conditions will make for treacherousdriving conditions all over the county.

Mariposa CHP Commander Rebecca Hagen said, “We just need people to slow down. The first storm of the season will cause dangerous conditions, and just because its posted 55 miles per hour, doesn’t mean that’s a safe speed. We want everyone to get where they’re going safely.”

Residents are cautioned to move their sus- ceptible plants indoors or under cover, and to provide shelter for pets and livestock.

Sunday brings another 30 percent possibility of rain with low temperatures predicted to be around 29 degrees in Mariposa. Monday’s forecast is for temperatures finally climbing out of the 40s into the mid 50s with a 20 percent chance of rain.

Mariposa County Public Health Officer, Dr. Charles Mosher, urges residents to make sure their pipes are wrapped to prevent freezing and breaking.

“If they can’t get them wrapped, then its an effective measure to leave the water running a trickle to prevent freezing,” Mosher said.

He also strongly cautioned against using inappropriate heating methods like charcoal or propane barbecues and gasoline fueled devices for heating. Operating those devices indoors can create serious threats from the emission of deadly carbon monoxide.

“Residents should also be careful each morning when they go outside since they’ll be walking on ice,” Mosher added. “They should make sure animals and people aren’t outside in these freezing overnight temperatures.”

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