ARIZONA NEWS

Snow in Arizona high country stops freeway traffic, closes schools; Phoenix gets rain

Dec 12, 2022, 8:50 AM | Updated: 1:00 pm

PHOENIX – The first of two predicted rounds of rain dropped on metro Phoenix early Monday, while parts of the high country got a load of troublesome snow.

Bad weather conditions shut down northbound Interstate 17 near Munds Park for hours – multiple vehicles slid off the snowy road – and a snow-related crash closed eastbound I-40 near Williams until around 12:30 p.m., the Arizona Department of Transportation said.

Most of the Flagstaff area had between 5 and 7 inches of snowfall as of 5 a.m., the National Weather Service office said.

Flagstaff and Williams school districts called off classes for the day after initially planning to start on a two-hour delay.

“Some redevelopment could be possible later this afternoon,” meteorologist Tony Merriman with weather bureau in Flagstaff told KTAR News 92.3 FM.

“We’re forecasting [in the morning] between 6 and 8 inches near Flagstaff and higher totals just north of Payson. The Forest Lakes area could maybe see upwards of 10 inches.”

Shortly after 10 a.m., ADOT closed westbound I-40 between mile markers 115 and 124 in Seligman and eastbound State Route 260 at mile marker 298 near Heber-Overgaard.

The weather watchers anticipate another couple of inches to fall Monday night.

Nothing that dramatic happened in Phoenix.

“We’re looking at maybe a quarter to half-inch of rain, but the general average is going to be about a quarter-inch,” Alex Young, a meteorologist with the weather bureau in Phoenix,

The early morning rain did leave varying totals around Phoenix and its suburbs from .08 inches in Tolleson to over a half-inch – .55 – at a spot in Scottsdale near McDowell Mountain Regional Park, according to a map at Maricopa County Flood Control District.

But after an hourslong break, there is a 40% chance for more rain in the Valley before 11 p.m., the weather service said.

KTAR News 92.3 FM’s Jim Cross contributed to this report.

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Snow in Arizona high country stops freeway traffic, closes schools; Phoenix gets rain