NWS 2-19-18

A dangerous ice storm is heading toward Wisconsin, and people living in areas north of Madison should get ready for the worst.

Up to a half-inch of ice could happen through Tuesday in an area from Sauk and Columbia counties to Fond du Lac and Sheboygan counties, which could make for snapped power lines and tree branches and extremely slippery pavement conditions.

The National Weather Service issued an ice storm warning from Monday afternoon into Tuesday, so residents in the warning area are encouraged to stay inside during the freezing rain period, especially the elderly and very young.

Ice isn't the only worry in this storm.

A flood watch has been issued for parts of south-central Wisconsin and all of southeast Wisconsin, because we could see up to 2 inches of rain, especially in areas closest to the extreme southeastern corner of the state.

With frozen ground and snow still on the ground, heavy rain could cause streams to rise and flooding on roads.

"If flooding occurs, it would persist through much of the week ahead," the Weather Service said.

There's also a chance for thunderstorms in south-central and southeast Wisconsin Monday and Monday night.

If you have to drive in Wisconsin the next couple of days, check the state's winter driving map for up to the minute road conditions before heading out.

Several school districts have already closed for Monday and possibly Tuesday because of the potential ice storm, mostly north of Madison. School closings can be found online at Channel3000.com.

27 Storm Track meteorologist Branden Borremans said rain in Madison should develop by mid- to late Monday morning, with some freezing rain developing north of Madison in the afternoon. The high should top out at 38.

The Weather Service is forecasting a half-inch of rain in Madison during the day, another half-inch overnight and a quarter-inch on Tuesday.

The heaviest rain could come during thunderstorms, which could pop up day or night.

Tuesday's high should be around 40, with the same conditions forecast as Monday: freezing rain to the north and west of Madison, rain here and to the south and east.

The storm system should be out of Wisconsin by Tuesday night, with colder air moving in behind it.

Wednesday should be mostly sunny and 28, then sun and 34 on Thursday.

There's a chance for mixed precipitation on Friday with a high of 39, partly sunny skies on Saturday and 42, and a chance for snow on Sunday with a high near 41.

Sunday's high in Madison was 38, 6 degrees above normal and 24 degrees below the record high of 62 for Feb. 18, set in 2017.

The low on Sunday was 11, 5 degrees below normal and 30 degrees above the record low of 19 below for the date, set in 1936.

No rain or snow fell at the airport on Sunday, keeping the precipitation total for February at 0.90 inches, 0.03 inches above normal.

The record precipitation total on Feb. 18 was 0.69 inches in 1882.

For the meteorological winter of December through February, Madison has received 3.31 inches of precipitation, 0.53 inches below normal, and 2.58 inches so far in 2018, 0.48 inches above normal.

Snowfall totals stayed at 13.3 inches for February, 6.2 inches above normal; 27.2 inches for winter, 6.3 inches below normal, and 27.5 inches for the snow season of July to June, 10.2 inches below normal.

The record snowfall on Feb. 18 was 4.6 inches in 2000.

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