Brutal Cold On Tap For Weekend; Temps Making Road Work Harder

Brutal Cold On Tap For Weekend; Temps Making Road Work Harder

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It will be six below zero in the Watertown area Friday night.

Enjoy the warmth while it lasts.

The National Weather Service forecasts both brutal cold and lake effect snow for the final weekend of 2017.

First, the snow. A winter weather advisory is in effect in Jefferson County from 10 AM Saturday to 7 AM Sunday. Look for 3-5 inches of snow in the worst hit areas. Since it's lake effect, it's hard to call just exactly where those areas will be, but the general guidance from the weather service is to the south of Watertown.

The worse news is the cold. The high Saturday is a reasonable 13, but the low will be minus 9. Then the high Sunday is minus 1, and the low is minus 22. That's in the Watertown area. It's equally bad in Lewis County, and only slightly better in St. Lawrence County, where the forecast low Sunday night is minus 17.

We're not sure you can tell the difference between minus 17 and minus 22. We can't.

Monday, New Year's Day, is brutal. Minus 3 for a high in St. Lawrence County, minus 17 Monday night. The forecast is for 0 in Lewis County New Year's Day and minus 16 Monday night. In the Watertown area, 1 degree for a high, minus 15 for a low.

By Tuesday, temperatures will be in the teens and we won't know what to do with the warmth.

We learned Friday that the bitterly cold weather is making clearing north country roadways more difficult.

"Salt loses its effectiveness below 10 degrees on it's own, so you try to do what you can do to help it work better," Patrick Keenan, the street and sewer maintenance supervisor for the city of Watertown told 7 News.

Keenan said the best way to help the roads is to lay down salt before the coldest weather sets in. Failing in that, the best method is treating road salt with a beet juice solution that holds up beter in sub-zero temperatures.

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