Effingham Daily News, Effingham, IL

December 24, 2012

White Christmas? Maybe

Jackson Adams
Effingham Daily News

EFFINGHAM — Local residents may be seeing a white Christmas, but not exactly when expected.

    Weather officials said a storm moving north from the Gulf Coast could bring up to 8 inches of snow to the area, starting late Christmas.

    “You’ll be right on the northern tip of  a developing storm on Christmas,” said Mike Pigott, a meteorologist with AccuWeather. “You might see a few flurries, maybe. After that, there’s a completely different storm ejecting out of the Rockies that could produce a lot of severe weather.

    “As it moves northward, you’ll start getting some precipitation Christmas night. It’ll be there Tuesday night from Wednesday. It is still a little bit early to speculate, but you could see 4 to 8 inches.”

    Other meteorologists said residents may want to be ready for big snows.

    “There’s going to be a lot of high winds, too,” said Chris Gellhart, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service. “There’s going to be some very high winds so there will be some blowing and drifting.”

    Geelhart said snows could hamper day after Christmas traveling and drivers should keep icy conditions and limited visibility in mind.

    “Especially if you’re traveling, be careful,” he said. “That’ll be something to monitor and check on if you’re going to be driving.”

    Geelhart said to check weather updates and make sure the vehicle is prepared for any potential weather situation.

    Despite a possible winter storm impacting drivers, Pigott said residents won’t need to panic once the snow hits and nice weather will be in sight.

    “The Christmas leftovers should hold you over,” he said with a laugh. “The weather should clear quickly. A level of high pressure should clear things up after Wednesday. This is not going to be a blizzard. It’s going to be a snowstorm with some blowing a drifting, but that’ll be about it.”