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Winter storm watch in effect across Tri-State

February 21, 2008

HAGERSTOWN - After a light snow dropped about an inch of snow in Hagerstown on Wednesday, the Tri-State area is bracing for more wintry weather beginning tonight.

The National Weather Service in Sterling, Va., announced today that a winter storm watch is in effect for the area from tonight through late Friday, bringing the possibility of "significant amouts of snow or ice accumulations" in the area.

New snow accumulation of 1 to 3 inches is possible tonight, the weather service said. Periods of snow and sleet are forecast for Friday morning, followed by freezing rain. Less than an inch of new snow and ice accumulation of less than a one-tenth of an inch is possible, NWS said. Freezing rain could return Friday night, then occasional drizzle or freezing drizzle.

On Saturday, NWS is forecasting a chance of rain and snow showers before noon, then a slight chance of snow showers. Temperatures are expected to climb into the mid- to upper 30s later Saturday, according to the weather service.

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"It's certainly a significant winter weather forecast," NWS meteorologist Steve Rogowski said Wednesday night. "Folks should stay tuned for any possible watches or advisories or warnings."

Wednesday's weather might have contributed to several accidents as wet roads turned icy in the evening, officials said.

Two people were taken to the hospital with nonlife-threatening injuries after a three-vehicle accident just after 6 p.m. on Cavehill Road, Washington County Sheriff's Department dispatcher Alan Crawford said.

The incident was the most serious of about six minor accidents in Washington County, he said. Hagerstown Police responded to three fender-benders, none of which resulted in any injuries, Lt. Timothy Wolford said.

In Berkeley County, W.Va., where snowfall totals approached 3 inches in some areas, the weather contributed to a tractor-trailer accident just after noon that caused backups on Interstate 81 as traffic was detoured onto U.S. 11, emergency officials said.

The snow began in Hagerstown at about 11 a.m. and tapered off before 7 p.m., according to the National Weather Service, which issued a snow advisory at about 11:45 a.m.

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