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Early snow moves across Kentucky; near-record cold temperatures could follow, forecaster says

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LOUISVILLE, Kentucky — An early snow blanketed a large portion of central Kentucky on Monday, and record-cold temperatures could follow.

The National Weather Service issued a winter weather advisory until noon for a large area of central Kentucky, calling for up to 4 inches of snow in the northern areas and around 1 inch in southern areas. The advisory remains in effect until 4 p.m. for portions of eastern Kentucky.

Snow began falling early Monday in the Louisville area and continued as rush hour traffic began. It was expected to taper off by late afternoon.

Wintry weather in November in Kentucky is "certainly unusual, but it's not unheard of," said Ron Steve, a meteorologist for the National Weather Service in Louisville. The city had a record 13 inches of snow on Nov. 2, 1966. It also had 5 inches of snow recorded in November 1977.

Still, he said Monday will be among the top 10 snowiest days on record in November.

After the snow moves out of the area, the weather service says temperatures are expected to drop into the low teens by Monday night and highs for Tuesday are in the 20s.

The normal high temperatures for this time of year are in the 50s, Steve said.

"It could be a very close call for one of the coldest Novembers on record," he said.

The record low temperature recorded is 13 degrees and the lowest high is 25 degrees, according to records dating back to 1880.

The snow caused several school districts to cancel or delay classes and kept crews from the Kentucky Transportation Cabinet busy Sunday night and Monday morning.

"The safety of Kentucky's roadways is the focal point of our maintenance program this time of year," Kentucky Transportation Cabinet Secretary Mike Hancock said in a statement. "Our snow and ice teams are on the job even before winter weather hits."

Steve said the unusual weather was made possible because colder air was brought down last week when a low pressure system merged with a super typhoon out of Asia. He said snow systems typically move along the southern edge of a cold air mass.

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