The winter storm that hit Iowa overnight played out pretty much as forecasted. National Weather Service Meteorologist Brad Small says they expected mostly snow to the north and ice to the south.
"The northern parts of the state received anywhere from six to 12 inches of snow, with the highest amounts right along the Highway 20 corridor between Fort Dodge and Waterloo. We also had freezing raining of a-quarter inch up to a-half inch in the southern parts of the state," Small said. "The effects may not have been as bad, we haven’t had too many reports of power outages, but the precipitation fell right as expected."
Alliant Energy reported over 500 customers lost power in southeast Iowa. MidAmerican Energy had around 400 customers lost electricity in Council Bluffs. Most of those power outages have since been restored. Small says northern Iowa can expect another one to four inches of snow on Saturday, with plummeting temperatures and strong winds statewide.
"We could see near blizzard conditions over the weekend," Small said. Sustained wind speeds are expected to reach 20 to 30 miles per hour with higher gusts, while low temperatures Saturday night will drop to the single digits below zero. High temperatures on Sunday will only reach the single digits above zero.
As of 10:30 this morning, the D.O.T. describes most interstate and highways in the state as "mostly to completely covered with snow or ice." Once the roads are cleared, they could quickly deteriorate again on Saturday.
"The best travel for the weekend will probably be as early as you can do it on Saturday because conditions will rapidly deteriorate throughout the day and into the night time hours," Small said. "Conditions Saturday night could be very hazardous because of darkness, blowing snow and falling temperatures." According to the calendar, the first official day of winter is Sunday.