Winter storm to bring crippling ice, rainfall to central US

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Several cardinals waiting their turn at the back yard bird feeder during todays ice storm in Black, MO.

OKLAHOMA CITY (AP) – A winter storm that brought heavy snow and rainfall to northern California is bearing down on the southern Plains, where forecasters predict that crippling ice accumulations and heavy rain could cause widespread power outages and flooding.

The National Weather Service said Thursday that the potential for a significant ice storm has been increasing. Forecasters say parts of Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri could see up to 1 inch of ice, causing widespread power outages and making roads impassable.

Storms are expected Friday, Saturday and Sunday. A winter storm watch is in effect beginning Friday morning for much of Oklahoma, Kansas and Missouri, along with parts of Illinois and Texas.

Ice accumulations and winds of up to 15 mph are forecast for much of the area. Heavy rain is likely further south.