MID-MICHIGAN (WJRT) (2/7/2019) - Mid-Michigan schools closed for the third time this week and eighth time in two weeks as a brief winter thaw quickly gave way to more cold weather.
Schools primarily in the northern part of Mid-Michigan called off classes for Friday before heading to bed on Thursday.
Most schools in Clare, Gratiot and Isabella counties closed late Thursday night. Other schools in the Thumb and north of Saginaw Bay also closed.
As of 6:30 Friday morning, there were about sixty closings, including Bay City and Mt. Pleasant schools.
The northern parts of Mid-Michigan received rain and freezing rain for much of Thursday while rain stopped earlier in the day in the southern part of the region.
Temperatures were falling rapidly overnight from the 40s to 20s as winds picked up. The quick drop in temperatures in just a couple hours created conditions favorable for a flash freeze.
Any puddles or wet roads were expected to freeze over, creating patches of black ice.
At the same time, winds picked up through the day on Thursday and begin gusting up to 50 mph Thursday night. Trees and power lines coated in ice were at higher risk of falling with the strong winds.
Counties north and west of Saginaw Bay were under a Winter Weather Advisory until 7 a.m. Friday. Most counties south of the bay were under a Wind Advisory until 10 a.m.
Temperatures on Friday will start in the 20s and fall through the day. By Friday evening, actual temperatures should be in the teens with wind chills of -10 degrees or colder in much of Mid-Michigan.
Better weather is forecast for the weekend, with mostly sunny skies on Saturday and high temperatures in the mid-20s. Light snow returns for Sunday with highs in the 20s.