Winter Fighting Back? 2 Snowstorms May Be On Deck For Northeastern US
More opportunities for snow will arise in the coming weeks across the Northeast with at least two storms AccuWeather meteorologists are keeping an eye on.
AccuWeather’s team of long-range forecasters predicted this flip in the weather pattern in early February, warning that a resurgence of colder air could lead to some of the best chances for snow of the entire season, especially along the Interstate 95 corridor of the Northeast. Snowfall has been scarce in the big East Coast cities since the arrival of winter, with Philadelphia measuring only 0.3 of an inch of snow and Baltimore recording just 0.2 of an inch of snow.
That storm will likely bring enough snow to lead to airline delays and flight cancellations in the major hubs of Minneapolis, Chicago and Detroit from Thursday into Friday.
Because the storm will take a swift, nearly west-to-east track from the Midwest to the Northeast coast, it may not have much time to act upon Atlantic Ocean moisture at the last minute.
“The storm is likely to strengthen upon reaching the Atlantic coast, but probably not fast enough to slow down the system’s forward speed from late Friday to Saturday,” AccuWeather Meteorologist Joseph Bauer said.
“Still, the storm should bring a shield of accumulating snow from the Great Lakes region to across a large part of Pennsylvania and portions of western and southern New York, northern West Virginia and western Maryland,” Bauer added. “It is possible for accumulating snow to reach all the way to coastal areas of New Jersey, New York and southern New England.”
The timing of the snow could disrupt early weekend plans from Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, through Portland, Maine.
Since daytime temperatures will likely be well above freezing ahead of the storm’s snow, the best chance of slippery travel will likely be where it snows Friday night or early Saturday. Temperatures Friday are expected to peak in the middle to upper 40s over the central Appalachians and the upper 40s to near 50 in the zone from New York City to Philadelphia. Even if the storm brings snow to the same area Saturday, temperatures during the day may climb far above freezing, making it difficult for snow to accumulate on paved surfaces.
Snowfall of a few inches is most likely to be over the central Appalachians to areas north and west of New York City and Philadelphia. Typically, storms that travel from west to east from the Midwest to the Atlantic coast usually do not bring widespread heavy snow to the I-95 mid-Atlantic corridor.
A small storm tracked in a similar manner from late Monday to Tuesday morning, spreading 4-8 inches of snow from north-central Pennsylvania to parts of east-central Pennsylvania and up to a couple of inches to northern and central New Jersey. There was little accumulation from the quick-moving storm around New York City.
Even if little or now accumulating snow occurs in the major hubs of New York City and Boston, snow falling and covering elevated surface is likely to prompt airline delays due to deicing operations at the very least. Roads are likely to be slippery over portions of the central Appalachians and interior southern New England for a time.
A storm that AccuWeather meteorologists are monitoring for early next week could take a path that many people recognize as a potential source for significant snowfall along I-95 and the Northeast.
There will be two pieces of energy with the storm setup next week, Bauer said. One piece will pivot over the North Central states, and the other will track near the Atlantic coast.
“If the northern piece [combines] with the Atlantic piece, this could lead to a storm that hugs the mid-Atlantic and New England coasts,” Bauer explained. Storms of this nature often bring heavy precipitation and strong winds and sometimes can be considered to be nor’easters.
AccuWeather forecasters are concerned that next week’s storm could have a similar fate as many others earlier in the winter. For a traditional, long-lived nor’easter to develop, there needs to be an area of high pressure stationed over the northern Atlantic Ocean that acts as atmospheric brakes to slow down the coastal storm. However, this will not be the case next week, meaning the upcoming storm could quickly track out to sea.
In short, people who live across the mid-Atlantic or I-95 corridor and have not yet purchased a snow blower this winter may want to hold off.
New York City has officially measured 2.3 inches of snow for the entire winter season, including the 0.1 of an inch that fell Monday night to early Tuesday. This compares to a historical average of about 26 inches through March 7. No snow fell in Philadelphia and Boston from the storm Monday night.
AccuWeather will continue to provide updates on both upcoming storms in the coming days.
Produced in association with AccuWeather