SPRINGFIELD, Mo- The Missouri Department of Transportation encourages drivers to be careful of slick roads throughout the day on Thursday.

Rain is expected to start Wednesday afternoon and spread east. Temperatures will decrease from north to south, aiding the transition from rain to wintry mix to snow. The change over will occur at different times depending on where you live.

If you live in the northernmost part of the Ozarks, the transitions will occur earlier and faster. Springfield residents will see the transitions from rain to wintry mix on Thursday.

“Because rain is expected to begin Wednesday, we will not be able to have crews out to treat ahead of the snow,” said Becky Allmeroth, MoDOT chief safety, and operations officer. “Motorists should watch for heavy rain and potential flash flooding Wednesday evening. Then a glazing of ice under the Thursday morning snowfall will make the morning commute particularly slippery. We expect snow and cold temperatures will affect road conditions through overnight Thursday. Please use caution and slow down if you need to travel Wednesday night through Friday morning.”

If you live in the northern part of the Ozarks and in central Missouri, the roads will have a heavier impact than if you live along and south of I-44.

Aside from the different precipitation, sustained winds will be up to 20 mph and gusts up to 30, which will impact truck drivers and other high-profile vehicles. On the backside of this system, temperatures will plummet to the 20s, which will bring the risk of freezing on the roadways and black ice.

Temperatures will be above freezing, and the sunshine will be back on Friday should help clear the roads ahead of the weekend.