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CLEVELAND (WJW)– Northeast Ohio is preparing for another round of winter weather, set to begin Wednesday and stretch into Friday morning.

The National Weather Service issued a winter storm watch and winter storm warning for much of the area, but what exactly does that mean?

NWS uses the alerts to tell you what to expect in the coming days.

Winter weather advisory

  • Issued any time before the event, but usually not more than 36 hours in advance.
  • Snowfall of 4 inches to 6 inches, or ice accumulation of .5 inch in 12 hours.

Winter storm watch

  • Issued any time before the event, but usually not more than 36 hours in advance.
  • Confidence in the forecast is 50 percent.
  • Snowfall of 6 inches or more in 12 hours, 8 inches or more in 24, or ice accumulation of .25 or more.
  • If the precipitation is mainly freezing rain, the watch is upgraded to an ice storm warning.
  • If the precipitation is mainly lake effect snow, the watch is upgraded to a lake effect snow warning.

Winter storm warning

  • Issued any time before the event, but mostly issued within 24 hours.
  • Confidence in the forecast is 80 percent.
  • Snowfall of 6 inches or more in 12 hours, 8 inches or more in 24, or ice accumulation of .25 or more.