Weekend Snowstorm to Hit Part of I-95
By Mel Fabrikant Thursday, February 14, 2013, 07:29 PM EST
This will be a last-minute developing storm situation, and there may be significant adjustments to the forecast moving into the first part of the weekend.
The odds are against a storm coming anywhere close to the magnitude the New England Blizzard of 2013. However, this storm could develop quickly enough to cause travel problems in some areas. AccuWeather.com will continue to analyze the pattern to provide updates on the storm potential.
Below is the latest interpretation of the pattern and general forecasts broken up by region:
The early developing stage of the storm is likely to bring a relatively small amount of snow to the central Appalachians and the upper mid-Atlantic coast Friday night into Saturday. This would be a rain changing to snow situation for most coastal areas. Road conditions would range from just wet with a bit of melting snow at the end to potentially slippery and snow covered.
As the storm continues to organize while moving northward just offshore, light to moderate snow is more likely to fall over central and southern New England Saturday. There could be enough snow to shovel and plow from portions of Long Island, northward to Massachusetts.
The storm will begin to fire on more cylinders Saturday night into Sunday over northern New England, eastern Quebec, New Brunswick and Nova Scotia, where it could evolve into a blizzard. In some of these northern areas, there is the potential for a foot of wind-whipped snow.
As the storm begins to strengthen and spin faster and faster, winds will kick up along the East coast and will help to drive cold air all the way to South Florida and the northwestern Caribbean.
The overall weather pattern will remain very busy as far as storms crossing the country through the end of February. Storms will roll in from the northern Pacific Ocean, southeastward along the Rockies, dip toward the Gulf of Mexico grabbing moisture, then will swing northeastward up the East Coast or alternatively toward the Great Lakes.
The rather volatile pattern has the potential to bring more heavy snow to cities, like Boston, that have seen a great deal of snow of late and could break the snow drought for cities in the Midwest, like Chicago.
In addition to rounds of severe weather and episodes of heavy rain in the South, the characteristics of the storms across the north will be in the form of heavy rain and/or heavy snow.
One storm could bring heavy snow, adding to an already deep snowcover in some locations. Another storm could then come along with a quick warmup and heavy rain, leading to a rapid meltdown of that snowcover, raising the risk of flooding.
While it is not unusual to get a couple of big storms like this during the late winter, the pattern will tend to pack a half-dozen major storms in a period of two to three weeks.
By Alex Sosnowski, expert senior meteorologist for AccuWeather.com