Ice jams, dense fog possible side effects to warmer weather - – Rockford’s News Leader

Ice jams, dense fog possible side effects to warmer weather


Temperatures will be feeling more comfortable in the coming days, but the above freezing weather could result in traffic issues and ice jams.

The weather starts jumping above freezing by Wednesday afternoon. With plenty of warm, high moisture air in place, we could see plenty of rapid snow melt. This could lead to a variety of issues while out on the road as well as help break up ice on the rivers.

The first travel issue could be dense fog Wednesday evening into Thursday morning. With visibility at times dropping under 1/2 mile, drivers would only have seconds to react to anything in the road. Under these hard-to-see conditions, remember to drive much slower, keep plenty of space between you and the vehicles around you, and keep your headlights on, evening during the daytime.

As temperatures hover around the freezing point Wednesday night, icy spots may develop on the roads as a result of freezing fog or freezing drizzle in the high moisture conditions. Watch out for areas of black ice and freezing slush that could stick the roads Thursday morning. You may have to adjust when you leave the house Thursday morning so you can drive slower to work.

Finally, rapidly melting river ice may break up then pile up along obstacles, causing ice jams. The jam backs up the river upstream, causing river flooding. This scenario can happen quickly, so keep a close eye out for pile-ups of ice along bridges or sharp bends in the rivers and rising river levels. Flooding from ice jams last as long as the ice is trapped and creating a dam on the river.

Wet roads may last throughout Thursday between melting snow and rain showers in the forecast, which may also slow you down. Dry weather is expected going into Friday, eliminating much of the travel issues caused by the thaw.

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