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Snowstorm to target interior Northeast as I-95 corridor remains in snow drought
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Snowstorm to target interior Northeast as I-95 corridor remains in snow drought
A large storm will spread rain across the Interstate 95 corridor in the Northeast through Wednesday, but like so many others this winter, the storm will send snow elsewhere. In this case, forecasters say it will whiten parts of the central Appalachians and bring the heaviest amounts to the northern tier of the region.The same storm system will produce a swath of heavy snow over parts of the Midwest and southeastern Canada.The snow drought from Washington, D.C., to Philadelphia, New York City and Boston will not be broken by a storm that evolves, strengthens and draws much colder air across the region into Thursday. This image, captured at midday Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2020, shows a large shield of clouds associated with a double-barreled storm system over the eastern half of the United States. (NOAA / GOES-East) The combined seasonal snowfall in Washington, D.C., Baltimore, Philadelphia and New York City is a mere 7.5 inches for this winter, compared to an average of 69.3 inches as of Feb. 25. The winter of 1972-1973 is the benchmark for lean snowfall for much of this swath. For example, that winter brought less than 0.1 of an inch of snow to Philadelphia. Mild air that built over much of the eastern half of the nation this past weekend will linger and be a major deterrent for snow along the Atlantic coast. However, cold air will fight its way across the eastern Great Lakes and the central Appalachians for the storm to produce some snow before it departs. Occasional rain will affect the I-95 swath, central Appalachians and central New England into Wednesday as the overall storm remains relatively weak.CLICK HERE FOR THE FREE ACCUWEATHER APPIt is possible that the rain from the storm comes down hard enough for a time to cause minor street and highway flooding. At the very least, blowing spray and wet roads can lead to longer commutes through Wednesday night. During Wednesday night and Thursday, as the storm strengthens and lifts northward, enough cold air will be drawn in to bring a change to snow or snow showers from the mountains in West Virginia, western Virginia and western Maryland to western and northern Pennsylvania and western, central and northern New York state.East of the Appalachians, from Virginia to New Hampshire, the atmosphere will likely dry out before cold air arrives and the rain will end. Only in coastal areas of Maine might the cold air catch up with the back edge of the rain. This could cause a wintry mix to occur at the tail end of the storm on Thursday. "We are anticipating a burst of rain and wind that can be accompanied by thunder and lightning from late Wednesday night to early Thursday morning from the mid-Atlantic to southeastern New England," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dave Dombek said.Such a dose of heavy rain and gusty winds can be very disruptive for the commute in the major cities.How much snow falls during the storm is likely to depend on the elevation in these areas as the heaviest snow, on the order of several inches, will fall over the ridges and plateaus versus the valleys. The heaviest snow in the northeastern United States will fall over the Adirondacks of New York state and the Green and White Mountains of Vermont and New Hampshire. These areas can pick up 6-12 inches with locally higher amounts, while an AccuWeather Local StormMax™ of 20 inches (50 centimeters) is most likely over southern Quebec. As a complicating factor, bands of lake-effect snow and snow squalls are forecast to blend in on the tail end of the storm and continue into the weekend from portions of western Pennsylvania to upstate New York. This lake effect will add to the storm totals, long after the center of the storm has moved on into Canada.The lake-effect snow will ramp up as temperatures plummet. "As the temperature dips, motorists and pedestrians should be prepared for changing conditions, as some areas that were initially made wet and slushy from the storm can become icy Wednesday night," AccuWeather Meteorologist Mary Gilbert said.Strong winds on the backside of the storm will continue into the end of the week but can be especially problematic in terms of breaking tree limbs, tossing trash cans and triggering sporadic power outages during Wednesday night, Thursday and into Thursday night.The gusty winds can also be disruptive for air travel and can lead to low-level flight turbulence in some cases.Keep checking back on AccuWeather.com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather Network on DirecTV, Frontier and Verizon Fios.
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