Maryland prepares for third winter weather event in a week

BALTIMORE - With temperatures anticipated to be below freezing in the next five days, the public is encouraged to take precaution against frigid temperatures as the area braces for the third winter weather event in a week.

ABC2 News reports to expect snow and sleet before 4 p.m. Saturday in most of the Baltimore area, although there could be additional snow to the north and west. The snow is then expected to switch over to rain before tapering off completely as Sunday's temperatures are expected to reach 42.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter weather advisory for Baltimore City, along with Baltimore, Harford, Howard, Cecil and Mongomery counties through 1 a.m. Sunday. There is also a winter storm warning in effect over the same time period for Allegany, Carroll Frederick and Washington counties.

Already, Harford County Public Schools has canceled school-sponsored activities for the weekend. Also, Carroll County Public Schools have canceled all scheduled events on Saturday while Frederick County has canceled athletic events and practices for that day as well.

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Maryland State Highway Administration officials said it will be out before the weather starts and remain on duty until state roads are cleared.

"Please keep a close eye on the forecast and make smart decisions if you must travel," SHA Administrator Melinda Peters said in a statement.

The SHA says its goal is to clear most major travel lanes within four to six hours after precipitation stops.

Physicians at the Greater Baltimore Medical Center say kids, elderly, infants and those with chronic medical problems are at risk the most for developing frostbite or hypothermia.

Hypothermia is when the body temperatures are colder than normal, causing body functions to slow down.

Frostbite is when skin and tissues freeze and affect the nose, ears, cheeks, chin, fingers or toes. It can permanently damage the body and lead to amputation.

"People should protect themselves and children against hypothermia and frostbite during cold weather. Warm clothing covering skin is essential, as is limiting time spent outdoors," said GBMC Chairman of the Department of Emergency Medicine Jeffrey Sternlicht in a statement.

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