March's lion finally roars

With spring in its infancy, a snowstorm rolled in today, leading to a few wrecks.

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With the snow-covered sculpture of a dog doing a balancing act in the foreground, a lone pedestrian makes her way into a downtown coffee shop this morning. An early spring storm kept pedestrians off the walks as well as causing several road accidents in the area. (March 22, 2012)

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As flakes continue to fall around him, Tony Herrera clears off a city sidewalk this morning after an early spring snowfall hit the area. Slick conditions caused several crashes throughout the area. (March 22, 2012)

WALLA WALLA -- Well, you could say it was snow surprise.

An early spring snowstorm forecast to hit the area this morning played out according to predictions, leaving behind slick roads and deserted sidewalks.

The storm, the result of a moist, cold weather front, dropped a blanket of snow over many areas of eastern Oregon and Washington, the National Weather Service said today.

A number of wrecks were reported this morning throughout the area, including a tractor-trailer jackknifed on U.S. Highway 12 near the exit to Walla Walla Regional Airport. The wreck blocked lanes of the highway, according to dispatches.

Other crashes were reported on Highway 125 near Harvey Shaw Road and on Highway 11 south of Milton-Freewater.

According to the weather service, the front is expected to move out of the region today, causing precipitation to end by this evening. However, cool and unsettled weather will persist through Friday with some rain and snow in mountain areas.

The cloudy, wet weather is expected to yield to mostly sunny skies tomorrow, with a high near 51 degrees.

Andy Porter can be reached at andyporter@wwub.com or 526-8318.

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