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Whiplash weather: Snow day today, balmy weekend ahead

Ron Musselman
York Dispatch
Alaina Brazeal, 5, of York City, leads the way while taking a snowy walk through Farquhar Park with her sister, mother and aunt Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020. Snow fell throughout York County most of the afternoon. Bill Kalina photo

York County residents were forced to break out their snow shovels Tuesday afternoon.

But by the weekend, you might be able to pull out the golf clubs.

“We’re going to flip the switch later this week, turn off the heaters and turn up the heat,” National Weather Service meteorologist Joe Ceru said Tuesday.

The area’s topsy-turvy weather pattern found York under a winter weather advisory from noon to 7 p.m. Tuesday, Jan. 7.

The State College-based weather service was calling for 1 to 3 inches of snow, with wind gusts as high as 35 mph. Multiple school districts throughout York County canceled afternoon and evening events Tuesday after snow began to fall. 

More:UPDATE: Some York County school districts closing Wednesday

Kayleen Zeiset, 5 of East Earl, Lancaster County, leads her father Kerry, and brother Derek, 3, through the snow will attending the 1Keystone Farm Show at the York Expo Center, Tuesday, January 7, 2020.
John A. Pavoncello photo

Ceru said heavy snow showers and brief squalls also are possible Wednesday morning, Jan. 8, which could cause issues with the morning commute.

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“There is a chance for some blowing snow, especially with the high winds, and that could slow travel,” he said.

Other cities in the area expected to be affected by the snow and wind gusts Wednesday include McConnellsburg, Chambersburg, Newport, Harrisburg, Hershey, Lebanon, Carlisle, Gettysburg and Lancaster.

Royer's Flowers employee Woody Felty clears the walkway at the shop on Route 30 in York during a snow shower Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020. Snow fell throughout York County most of the afternoon. Bill Kalina photo

Ceru said temperatures, projected to be in the high 20s or low 30s Wednesday, will rebound in a big way this weekend.

He said the average temperature from Friday though Sunday in York will be 56 degrees, with a high of 63 on Saturday, Jan. 11.

Ceru said it will get cold again next week and people shouldn’t get too used to the warmer temperatures.

“We’re just at the beginning of winter,” he said. “We still have plenty of winter weather left over the next few months.”

Rush hour traffic moves along Route 30 in York during a snow shower Tuesday, Jan. 7, 2020. Snow fell throughout York County most of the afternoon. Bill Kalina photo

The rapid weather changes are paired with an increase in flu activity at the statewide and local levels.

There have been a total of 23,362 lab-confirmed influenza cases reported in Pennsylvania since the start of the flu surveillance season on Sept. 29, according to the Pennsylvania Department of Health.

That puts this year's early flu totals significantly ahead of last year's pace at this point.

The health department said York County had 368 cases of flu from Sept. 29 through Jan. 4, with 164 cases of influenza A and 204 of influenza B.

The organization also says there have been 13 flu-related deaths and 477 hospitalizations reported in the state.