An overnight storm is expected to bring fresh snow to the Omaha metro area, followed by bitterly cold weather Wednesday morning.

Bryon Miller, meteorologist with the National Weather Service office that serves the Omaha area, said light snow probably will begin falling late this afternoon.

Most evening commuters should be able to get home before problems develop, Miller said. After about 6 p.m., conditions could begin deteriorating as snows and winds pick up.

Overnight, the weather is forecast to be snowy, windy and cold. Temperatures are forecast to bottom out around 20 degrees and winds are forecast to blow from about 15 mph to about 25 mph, gusting to more than 30 mph.

The snow is forecast to taper off by Wednesday morning, but winds will still be strong, so commuters are likely to face a cold drive to work and some blowing snow. Miller said windchills could approach zero.

"There probably won't be any huge problems, but the morning commute will be slower than normal, so it would be good to allow extra time," he said.

Miller advised people to pay attention to this evening's forecast, in case it changes and more snow moves in.

Omaha is on the northwest edge of a powerful, potentially deadly storm system that is cutting diagonally across the country from Texas to the Great Lakes.

Just to to the south and east of Omaha a winter storm advisory and a storm watch, respectively, are in effect.

If the storm wobbles a bit north, Omaha could see heavier snowfall.

The latest forecast calls for 1 inch to 2 inches in the Omaha area and 2 inches to 4 inches south toward Nebraska City.

Central Iowa, including Des Moines, could see 5 inches.

The current forecast calls for the brunt of the storm to arrive this evening and to last into early Wednesday morning.

The National Weather Service has warned that there is an elevated risk for severe weather, including tornadoes, in the Arksansas, Oklahoma and Missouri area.

Already, a tornado watch is in effect just south of Kansas City.

--Nancy Gaarder

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