Winter weather moves into Topeka, northeast Kansas — city sees quick drop in temperature

Topeka was seeing precipitation of the liquid variety in the predawn hours of Thursday morning, but by shortly after daybreak, it had turned to sleet.

 

A strong cold front had moved into the Topeka area early Wednesday, dropping temperatures 22 degrees in three hours — from 45 degrees at 4:53 a.m. to 23 degrees at 7:53 a.m.

By 8:53 a.m., the temperature had dropped another 3 degrees, to 20 degrees in Topeka.

Streets and roadways were slick in the Topeka area, and numerous accidents and slide-offs had been reported by 9:30 a.m.

However, there were no immediate reports of any of the crashes resulting in serious injuries.

The National Weather Service issued a Winter Weather Advisory through noon Thursday for Topeka and Shawnee County. Other counties in the advisory are Jefferson, Lyon and Osage.

Meanwhile, a Winter Weather Warning was issued until noon Thursday for counties north and west of the Topeka area.

Snow was expected to develop later in the morning in the Topeka area. Total wet snow accumulations of up to 1 inch are expected, with localized amounts up to 3 inches. Ice accumulations also could form a light glaze in places.

Many schools and organizations were closed Thursday morning. And Topeka police were in walk-in phase reporting.

The forecast for Friday through Wednesday is calling for continued cold conditions. A “very cold air mass” will once again settle across the region for late this week and will continue into this weekend and next week, the weather service said. Wind chill values are expected to occasionally fall to zero to minus-15 degrees.

Here is the seven-day outlook from the weather service:

Thursday: Rain and snow, possibly mixed with freezing rain before 1pm, then a chance of snow between 1 and 4 p.m. Temperature falling to around 17 by 5 p.m. Wind chill values between zero and 10. Windy, with a northwest wind 15 to 20 mph increasing to 25 to 30 mph in the morning. Winds could gust as high as 35 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100 percent. Little or no ice accumulation expected. New snow accumulation of around an inch possible.

Thursday night: Mostly cloudy, then gradually becoming clear, with a low around 7. Wind chill values between minus-5 and 3. Blustery, with a north wind 15 to 20 mph decreasing to 10 to 15 mph after midnight. Winds could gust as high as 30 mph.

Friday: Increasing clouds, with a high near 24. Wind chill values between -5 and 5. North wind around 5 mph.

Friday night: A 20 percent chance of snow before midnight. Cloudy, with a low around 10. North wind 5 to 10 mph.

Saturday: Partly sunny, with a high near 18.

Saturday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 8.

Sunday: A 30 percent chance of snow before noon. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 31.

Sunday night: A 50 percent chance of snow after midnight. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 17.

Monday, Martin Luther King Day: A 40 percent chance of snow before noon. Mostly sunny, with a high near 22.

Monday night: Mostly clear, with a low around 0.

Tuesday: Sunny, with a high near 19.

Tuesday night: Partly cloudy, with a low around 6.

Wednesday: Mostly sunny, with a high near 32.

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