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Most Harford roads are cleared, but overnight icing still a threat

The bulk of Tuesday's snow and sleet storm has passed Harford County, but state and county officials are urging residents to be aware of potential unsafe conditions on the roads as they head to work Wednesday morning.

Skies were partially cloudy over Bel Air after sunset, but there is a 40 percent chance of snow showers Tuesday night and a 30 percent chance of snow showers Wednesday, with windy conditions both days, according to the National Weather Service website.

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Temperatures could get down to 19 degrees Tuesday night and aren't expected to get above of 28 degrees Wednesday.

Harford County Public Schools will be closed Wednesday for the second consecutive day. The closing was announced late Tuesday afternoon.

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That means two of nine inclement weather make-up days will be used. Schools had not been closed at all this winter before this week's storm.

Video of the quickly melting snow, which began as soon as the snow stopped, following the snowstorm in Harford County on Tuesday, March 14.

Harford Community College and the Towson University North East  building will open at 10 a.m. Wednesday, according to HCC's website.

Aberdeen Proving Ground's senior commander has ordered a two-hour delayed arrival on Wednesday, according to an announcement on the post's Facebook page.  All scheduled activities will open with a two hours delay from normal operating hours.

"It's important for drivers to recognize that pavement temperatures are below freezing," Lora Rakowski, a spokesperson for the State Highway Administration, said. "With the anticipated precipitation overnight, as well as blowing snow, there could certainly be icy spots."

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Harford County officials urged motorists to look out for black ice on the roads during the day.

"Wet roads can become dangerous roads very quickly," county government spokesperson Cindy Mumby said.

County snow plows were still on the roads around sunset — crews hit the roads around 3 a.m. Tuesday. The county's online Snow Plow Tracker remained active as of Tuesday night.

Some county roads had been cleared "to the pavement," but others remained slushy, according to Mumby.

Harford County appared to have been spared the worst of a late winter storm, receiving less than six inches of mostly wet snow overnight Monday into Tuesday morning.

"This snow is actually difficult to push because it's wet, and especially on the secondary roads," she said. "They remain slushy, which is a concern, because that can refreeze as the temperature drops and become icy and dangerous."

There were 12 closures along county roads, mostly because of fallen trees and wires, but all the closures had been lifted as of Tuesday evening, according to Mumby.

Sporadic power outages were still showing on BGE's online outage map Tuesday night, most of them clustered around Joppa, Aberdeen and Havre de Grace.

State Highway Administration crews were active throughout Maryland Tuesday, including in Harford County, plowing highways, assisting stranded drivers and removing fallen debris such as trees.

Rakokowski noted 6 inches of snow, topped by ice, had been measured at the SHA's Churchville Shop.

Snow and sleet covered the area as Harford County received the only significant snow of the winter Monday night into Tuesday. (Matt Button, Baltimore Sun Media Group)

She said the SHA anticipated a relatively normal commute Wednesday morning, but "drivers should still plan plenty of extra time for their commute."

"Drivers should be very careful and vigilant of changing conditions traveling from residential areas to highways," she added.

Motorists can either call 511 or visit http://www.md511.org for travel updates, Rakowski said.

Harford County residents can see updates and safety tips online at the county website or the Harford County Government and the Harford County Department of Emergency Services pages on Facebook.

"We appreciate everyone's cooperation in getting through this surprisingly late winter storm," Mumby said.

It had only been daylight about 20 minutes Tuesday, but Jordan Flagler, of Fallston, and Justin Wooters, of Churchville, had already been hard at work for the past three hours, clearing crusty snow from residential walkways and entrances around Bel Air.

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