Winter weather watches, advisories continue across the country this weekend


CHICAGO (NewsNation Now) —  A bitterly cold arctic air mass continues to cover the U.S., leaving a trail of snow, ice and bitter cold from coast to coast. Forecasters predict that winter storms with below-average temperatures will continue into next week.

The National Weather Service has issued winter storm watches and advisories for most parts of the country beginning Saturday. The next winter storm is expected to bring worse weather conditions than what was seen with Thursday’s 133 vehicle pileup in Texas that left 6 dead.

Friday afternoon Texas Gov. Greg Abbott issued a disaster declaration to all 254 counties in response to severe winter weather throughout the state.

In Virginia, Gov. Ralph Northam also issued Executive Order 76 on Friday establishing a State of Emergency for Virginia and the National Weather Service issued an ice storm warning as winter weather sweeps across the Commonwealth.

Many parts of Virginia saw snow, a wintry mix or rain on Thursday night and Friday morning. More ice is expected in the Central region on Saturday, causing the potential for traffic issues and power outages, according to NewsNation affiliate WRIC.

Thursday’s pileup on Interstate 35 near downtown Fort Worth occurred when a tangle of semitrailers, cars and trucks smashed into each other and turned every which way, with some vehicles on top of others.

The crash happened just after 6 a.m. and involved many health care workers, emergency responders and police officers, officials said. At least 65 people were treated at hospitals, with 36 of them taken by ambulance from the crash site, including three with critical injuries, officials said.

Forecasters predict snow and ice are to continue this weekend in southern states along with subzero temperatures in Texas.

Snow will continue in the Northern/Central Rockies into the Central Plains Friday night into the Middle Mississippi Valley. It will continue into parts of the Great Lakes and Ohio Valley on Saturday, according to the National Weather Service.

As for the Midwest, Wisconsin, northern Michigan and Illinois will experience single-digit temperatures and even snow, according to the National Weather Service.

In the East, Washington, D.C., Philadelphia and New York City will get a cool wintry mix. AccuWeather reports it will remain cold enough for mostly snow to fall in Pittsburgh and Boston this weekend. Light ice accumulations are likely as far north as New York City.

In the Northwest, a new Winter Storm Warning has been issued for the Portland to Seattle. Heavy snow and ice conditions are expected on Friday and into Saturday.

The National Weather Service said rain is expected along the Western Gulf Coast this weekend.

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