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      Wintry weather looms Thursday

      Update, 12:40 p.m.:

      Sleet is falling along I-44 and areas just north and south of the interstate. Southeast Missouri is seeing sleet as well as freezing rain into southern Illinois. Snow is starting to mix in with sleet and spread northeast from the Joplin area at this hour. Expect snow mainly along and south of Hwy. 50 within the next 2-3 hours, with snow becoming minimal along and north of I-70. Roads will become very slick as surface temperatures only sit in the 20s.

      Previous story:

      A cold front moved through Wednesday, dropping temperatures by 20-30 degrees across Missouri by early Thursday.

      Cold, northwest winds will persist throughout the day, eventually switching to the north Thursday night. This will keep temperatures in the middle 20s today and drop them into the teens overnight. Wind chills will be in the teens consistently.

      Snow will begin to fill in early Thursday afternoon, with sleet mixed in south of the Jefferson City/Lake of the Ozarks area. Better moisture lies in areas south of Hwy. 50, where snow totals could reach 2-3" by the end of the event Friday. Along and south of I-44 sleet and snow will mix, and totals could reach 4". In far southern Missouri, southern Illinois, southern Indiana, western Kentucky, and through Arkansas, a wintry mix is likely, making travel hazardous if heading south and east.

      Snow will taper off late Thursday night, then fill in again early Friday morning. Colder air exists aloft, so precipitation over the entire viewing area will be in the form of snow.

      You can stay up-to-date with weather information on our website, or find our weather team on Facebook and Twitter at @jqwx_90 and @ZachKRCG.

      To check road conditions in Missouri, refer to MoDOT's Traveler Information Map.