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Published: Wednesday, 1/12/2005

<font face="verdana" size="1" color =#CC0000><b> * NEW * </b></font> Fog, melting snow hamper area

Sometimes heavy morning rainfall, rising temperatures, and melting snow combined to create heavy fog conditions around the Toledo area that continued past noon.

Numerous accidents were triggered by the fog, including one on U.S. 23 southbound a mile north of the Ohio-Michigan border about 10:15 a.m. when a disabled lumber company truck about to be towed from the berm was clipped by a passing tractor-trailer loaded with orange juice bottles. Dozens of bottles of orange juice inside the latter were scattered across the highway following the impact.

The problems were not confined to roadways. At least one flight at Toledo Express Airport from Chicao was canceled and others were delayed. Visibility at Toledo Express in Swanton, Hillsdale (Mich.) Municipal Airport, and Toledo Suburban Airport in Whiteford Township, Mich. was an eighth of a mile. Toledo Metcalf Airport in Lake Township reported a quarter-mile visibility.

Area train crews were complaining they were having difficulty seeing track signals.

Temperatures at noon ranged from 37 degrees at Detroit Metro Airport to 44 degrees at Toledo Express and 61 degrees at Lima and Findlay. Weather forecasters expected the fog to eventually burn off by early afternoon as temperatures continued to rise in advance of an oncoming cold front Thursday that is expected to send the daytime highs into the teens by Friday.

The National Weather Service has issued a flood watch for Erie, Hancock, Huron, Ottawa, Sandusky, Seneca, and Wood counties, and the cities of Bowling Green, Bucyrus, Findlay, Fostoria, Fremont, Norwalk, Port Clinton, Sandusky, Tiffin, and Toledo.

Rain was tapering to scattered showers. Runoff from the heavy rain and snowmelt on already saturated ground will continue through the afternoon, Streams and rivers are already near bankfull and water levels will likely continue to rise.

Flood warnings continue for the following rivers: the Blanchard River at Findlay (9.5 feet and rising, flood stage 11 feet), the Maumee River at Grand Rapids (9.1 feet/15 feet), the Maumee River at Waterville (7.8 feet/9 feet), and the Portage River at Woodville (8.6 feet/9 feet).

Read more in later editions of The Blade and toledoblade.com.



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