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Freezing rain may turn to strong winds Sunday; Maryland braces as winter storm moves east

Warm temperatures lingered in the Baltimore-Washington region Saturday evening, but forecasters are calling for strong winds and wind chill Sunday as cold air rushes back into the region.

The National Weather Service reduced the winter storm warning to an advisory around noon Saturday, with much of the region receiving rain instead of the previously forecast wintry mix. Portions of north and western Maryland along the Pennsylvania line could still see freezing rain overnight into Sunday.

Maryland misses worst of winter storm but faces 50 mph gusts Sunday and sub-zero wind chills early Monday »

However, winter warnings and advisories should be able to be canceled in most parts of the region by 1 a.m., with the exception of western Maryland where more than four inches of snow reportedly fell in parts of Allegheny County.

Still, strong winds from the north west are expected pick up early in the day Sunday and may continue well into the evening and all day Monday. A wind advisory is in effect from 11 a.m. to 7 p.m. Sunday, and the temperature is expected to drop sharply over the day to a low of 11 degrees Sunday night.

Wind and wind chill advisories may need to be extended, according to the National Weather Service.

Earlier Saturday morning, temperatures in Maryland were hovering at freezing and slightly above. In downtown Baltimore, temperatures Saturday morning reached nearly 40 degrees. By evening they were still in the mid-30s in Baltimore and were expected to rise back into the mid-40s early Sunday morning.

The forecast for Maryland is better than what is expected north of the state. A winter storm was predicted to hit the East Coast as it moved from the Midwest, which saw heavy snowfall and strong winds Friday that were expected to continue through Saturday.

A winter advisory — alerting to the possibility of freezing rain — is still in effect until 6 a.m. Sunday for Carroll County and northern Baltimore County

After 9 p.m., we’re likely to see mostly rain in the region, especially in the city and areas along the I-95 corridor. And it will continue Saturday night into Sunday morning. Meteorologists warn there could be some flooding because of the frozen ground and snow left from last weekend’s snow.

In Annapolis Saturday morning, conditions were favorable for the Super Plunge portion of the Maryland State Police Polar Bear Plunge at Sandy Point State Park.

This story will be updated.

Baltimore Sun reporter Scott Dance contributed to this article.

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