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Schools, cities in Utah prepare for super storm following Super Bowl

(Spenser Heaps, KSL)



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SALT LAKE CITY — Sunday’s Super Bowl matchup between the San Francisco 49ers and Kansas City Chiefs was played in pleasant Miami, but there won't be any Sunshine State-like weather in Utah for a while.

Meteorologists are forecasting a major winter storm to slam Utah after the big game and continuing into Monday, making for a messy morning commute. The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning to take effect at 10 p.m. Sunday and last for 24 hours.

Utah Department of Transportation spokesman John Gleason encouraged Utahns to stay off the roads Monday. "All indications are that this is a major winter storm," Gleason said. "We're recommending that if people have flexibility with their travel (Monday), that they stay off the roads as much as possible.

"Our primary focus is keeping everyone safe, and just having fewer people out on the roads tomorrow during this major snowstorm, that's going to allow us to accomplish that goal," Gleason said.

He said UDOT crews will be working "around the clock" the next couple days to battle the snow and ice.

All nonessential Salt Lake City and Sandy services will work via telecommuting or be on emergency leave until noon on Monday. The Salt Lake Mayor's Office said in a statement that a determination for the rest of the day will be made at 10 a.m. The Utah Senate also announced that all committee meetings will be delayed an hour.

Many school districts stated they will be making a final call before 6 a.m. about canceling the school day entirely while others announced late starts.

  • Evaluating tomorrow: Alpine (contemplating full-day closure), Salt Lake City, Murray, Tooele, Granite, Ogden, Nebo (contemplating full-day closure), Logan, Cache and Jordan school districts, Utah Valley University, Utah State University, Salt Lake Community College
  • Two-hour late start: Box Elder, Weber, Davis and Provo school districts, Utah Schools for the Deaf and Blind (all campuses), NUAMES Early College High School, Syracuse Arts Academy, Ascent Academy Farmington, Spectrum Academy, Venture High School, HighMark Charter School, East Hollywood High School, Leadership Learning Academy (Layton, Ogden)
  • Morning classes canceled: LDS Business College, University of Utah and U of U Dental School (all classes before 12:30 p.m.)

Ogden School District said that while it is currently expecting all schools to operate on their normal schedule, students will not be marked tardy during the first two hours of the school day for weather-related delays.

"Please keep in mind, if there are no changes to the school schedule, no announcements will be made," Tooele County School District reminded families in a Facebook post.

"City snowfighters will begin treatment on priority roads beginning this evening," read the Salt Lake City advisory. "It is likely that refuse collection will be delayed by a day this week."

KSL meteorologist Dan Guthrie laid out what to expect.

“Things will get windier throughout (Sunday), and then models are bringing in this next round of storms between about 8 p.m. and 11 p.m.

“So after 11 p.m., that’s when things are likely going to be dicey on the roads,” he said.

Guthrie anticipates Utah will see half its snowfall total overnight and half throughout the day on Monday. Though the storm will abate by Tuesday, he said, another storm system could impact the state on Wednesday.

For the Monday storm, expect about 4 to 8 inches of snow in the valleys throughout northern and central Utah, Guthrie said. Some cities will see locally higher totals — forecasts anticipate about 10 inches for Salt Lake City and 12 inches for Tooele.

The mountains should pick up about 1 to 2 feet of snowfall from the storm.

“So enjoy (Sunday),” Guthrie said. “Monday morning’s commute, not going to be fun. You’ll definitely want to give yourself some extra time.”

The KSL Weather Center anticipates a steep dropoff in high temperatures between Sunday and Monday. While Salt Lake City topped out around 56 degrees on Sunday, high temperatures over the next three days will plummet to 26, 25 and 27 degrees.

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