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Storm to bring wintry mix to area

A Virginia Department of Transportation truck treats this section of Old Valley Pike near Cedar Creek at the Shenandoah and Warren County line Monday in anticipation of winter weather forecasts for Tuesday. Rich Cooley/Daily (Buy photo)

By Ryan Cornell

The area could see a few snowflakes early Tuesday, though sledding season is still far off.

A winter weather advisory issued by the National Weather Service that is in effect between 3 a.m. and 4 p.m. Tuesday warns that up to an inch of snow and sleet is expected, followed by one to two-tenths of an inch of freezing rain accumulating later in the afternoon.

Chris Strong, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service, said the storm approaching the East Coast probably won't drop enough snow to cause any major impact, but will bring more of a wintry mix of sleet, snow and freezing rain.

He said temperatures are forecasted to linger in the 20s and stay below 35 degrees for most of the week.

Because of the freezing rain, limited visibility and slippery roads are expected.

Strong said the area will most likely see about 2 inches of rain and possibly more in certain spots.

"Tomorrow's a busy travel day," he said Monday. "I think it will be a factor in tomorrow's rush hour. It'll be raining so much, that by itself could cause some transportation delays."

Adding that there's a chance for snowfall on Wednesday near the end of the storm, Strong warned people traveling north and west through the mountains to be especially cautious.

The Virginia Department of Transportation is preparing to combat these travel nightmares. Trucks involved in pre-treating sections of Interstate 81 and Interstate 66 could be seen on Monday applying anti-icing chemicals on the roadway.

The chemicals, which consist of liquid magnesium chloride, calcium chloride and sodium chloride, are applied up to 48 hours before a storm to prevent a bond from forming between the pavement and snow or ice.

Traffic alerts and traveler information can be obtained by dialing 511 or visiting 511Virginia.org or call the VDOT Customer Service Center at 1-800-367-7623 for assistance.

Contact staff writer Ryan Cornell at 540-465-5137 ext. 164, or rcornell@nvdaily.com

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