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Temperatures will be above normal tonight as abundant Gulf moisture surges north across the region. Overnight lows will be mainly in the 65 to 70 degree range. There is a 30% chance of showers along the Red River and also across the southeast counties. The rest of the region will see a 20% chance of rain.
We'll have mostly cloudy skies Saturday. Some showers are possible in the morning southeast of a Lampasas to Paris line. Isolated to scattered showers and thunderstorms are possible during the afternoon. IF the cap breaks, a few storms could become severe producing hail larger than 1 inch in diameter and wind gusts over 60 mph. Otherwise, cloud to ground lightning will accompany any storms that develop.
Rich Gulf moisture will continue pouring into North and Central Texas into the weekend. Saturday will begin with cloudy skies, but the sun will emerge as the day progresses, particularly west of the I-35 corridor. A capping inversion may prevent thunderstorm development, but with considerable instability, any storm that develops may quickly become severe. More widespread storms are expected Saturday night as a cold front moves through the region. Damaging winds will be the primary hazard with the line of storms that accompanies the front, but large hail and tornadoes will be possible with any discrete cells. A brief tornado could also occur within the line, but since these nocturnal spin-ups are often obscured by rain, they would be difficult for spotters to observe. The severe weather threat will diminish early Sunday morning as the storms move into Central and East Texas. Skies will clear on Sunday, and temperatures will reach the 70s Sunday afternoon with lower humidity. However, the gusty north winds behind the front will make it feel cooler.

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North Texas Sleet and Ice Storm
February 24, 2003


 Preliminary Sleet/Snow/Ice Accumulation Map

A Major Winter Storm swept across all of North Texas Monday afternoon and Monday night as warm and moist air moved over a deep, cold, Arctic air mass at the surface.A major sleet and ice storm swept across North Texas on February 24th, 2003. This map shows ice accumulations from 1/3" to 3/4" across areas south of a line from Athens to Killeen. Areas north of this line experienced sleet and snow accumlations from 1/2" to near 5" inches. Most of the precipitation fell as sleet. 

Early Monday morning, a Winter Storm Watch was posted for Monday night for  southeast sections of North Texas.  As new weather data arrived later that morning, it became evident that all of North Texas would be under the gun for a winter event. Winter Storm Warnings were issued for Monday afternoon for the northwest 2/3'rds of the region, while an Ice Storm Warning was issued for Monday night across the southeast 1/3. 

The precipitation began across the west and northwest sections of North Texas around noon, where it lingered through 5 pm.

Most of the precipitation initially was in the form of sleet. New sleet showers developed across the southwestern sections of North Texas in the early evening, while some sleet and freezing rain also developed across the  south-central and southeast.

The sleet came down very heavy at times and before the precipitation ended, several locations across the north has received 3 to 4 inches of sleet and snow. Central sections of North Texas had 1 to 1 and 1/2 inches of mainly sleet.

Further south and southeast, ice accumulated between 1/4" and 3/4 inch.  The ice across the southeast caused numerous trees and power lines to fall, especially in Leon and Roberston Counties. Elsewhere, the sleet and snow helped to create numerous traffic accidents and the D/FW Airport reported numerous delays. 

While there was not a lot snow to play with, children across most of North Texas did delight in a day off from school, as some districts sent students home early Monday and many cancelled classes for Tuesday.