GETTING PREPARED: Jefferson County Highway workers Wednesday lifted a cinder box onto a truckbed in preparation for possible ice and snow accumulation in the forecast for Friday and Saturday. (Staff photo by Seth Grundhoefer/sgrundhoefer@madisoncourier.com)
GETTING PREPARED: Jefferson County Highway workers Wednesday lifted a cinder box onto a truckbed in preparation for possible ice and snow accumulation in the forecast for Friday and Saturday. (Staff photo by Seth Grundhoefer/sgrundhoefer@madisoncourier.com)
Local highway crews weren't fooled by Wednesday's mild temperatures. They know heavy snow accumulation could soon threaten the area.

The Courierarea is under a winter storm watch until early Saturday morning as an arctic cold front begins its push through the Midwest.

Meteorologists estimate the system is capable of dumping 3 to 7 inches of snow in Jefferson and Scott counties and areas of Trimble County, Ky.

On Wednesday, local crews loaded trucks with cinders, sand and salt in preparation of the storm system that already has delivered more than two feet of snow in some western states.

The National Weather Service in Louisville forecasts a 70 percent chance of precipitation today - with heavy rain at times - and a 100 percent chance of precipitation on Friday.

Friday is expected to bring a mix of snow and ice to the area. Colder temperatures are in the forecast for Saturday, with a high of 28 degrees expected, and Sunday, which could bring additional precipitation.

Organizers of the Very Merry Christmas Parade said Wednesday they have no plans to reschedule the parade, though they advise visitors to dress warm.

The city of Madison has agreed to plow Main Street - which is technically a state highway - for the event, as well as Jefferson and Mill streets, where the parade routes begins and ends, respectively.

Madison Street Superintendent Doug Vest said crews are on standby and ready to be deployed as necessary.

The city has about 500 tons of salt stored at its garage and is responsible for maintaining 62 miles of streets. Madison has three single-axle dump truck that have plows and salt box attachments for the hilltop and two one-ton trucks for the downtown area.

Michigan Hill and Telegraph Hill are priority roads because they are the main routes for emergency vehicles.

The Jefferson County Highway Garage has 11 snow plows ready to tackle any accumulation along county roadways. The trucks are deployed after snow or ice events.