A persistent winter storm that has canceled flights, closed schools and created slippery roads across the South and Midwest is expected to dump snow, hail and ice on the Northeast on Friday.
According to Rich Otto, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service’s forecasting center, heavy snow is possible in northern parts of New York and New England, with ice a top concern in further south.
The weather service said Friday that it’s snowing 4 to 8 inches accumulation so far in the pocket of the State of New York. Its office in Albany, NY, said early Friday morning that the city had begun to see some hail and freezing rainand advise people to avoid driving if they can.
According to the Weather Service, Buffalo and northern Vermont could see up to 14 inches of snow accumulation, with 6 to 12 inches expected across central North Hampshire.
Mr. Otto said that New York City is unlikely to see snow, but will likely receive some ice combined with rain. “Looks like they’ll be forgiven for the worst of it,” he said.
Up to an inch of sleet is expected to accumulate in parts of northern Connecticut, southeastern Massachusetts and northern Rhode Island, while Portland, Maine, up to two inches is possible. In the Boston area and throughout southern New England, rain will turn to freezing rain followed by sleet, leading to icy road conditions, The weather service said early Friday.
Continued cold temperatures in the coming days will make the roads icy. More than 2,800 flights to, from and within the United States were canceled on Friday, with the highest number of cancellations at Dallas Fort Worth International Airport, Boston Logan International Airport and La Guardia Airport in New York, according to Flight Aware.
“That sleet is going to be a bit more difficult to clear up because it won’t get much help from the warm temperatures,” said Sarah Thunberg, a meteorologist with the Weather Service in Portland.
This week’s winter storm warning has affected more than 54 million people across the country, the Weather Service said. By Friday morning, the storm had knocked out power to more than 300,000 homes and businesses, mostly in Ohio and Tennessee.
One person was killed in a tornado near Sawyerville, Ala., south of Tuscaloosa, according to Russell Weeden, Hale County’s director of emergency management. He told local reporters Eight people were injured, three of them in critical condition.
In Memphis, ice began to accumulate from a steady freezing rain on Thursday, leading to traffic accidents, fallen trees and power outages. Ice storm warnings have been issued further east, including in areas west of Tennessee and Kentucky.
The highway situation is worse than in Illinois, where part of Interstate 57 is blocked for a few hours on Thursday after several tractor-trailers overturned.
In Texas, Governor Greg Abbott called the storm “one of the most significant icing events we’ve had in the State of Texas in at least several decades.” As of Friday morning, 3 to 5 inches of snow had fallen in some areas north and west of Fort Worth, Texas, According to the Weather Service.
The arrival of single-digit temperatures, snow and sleet in North Texas comes nearly a year after an eight-day freeze caused widespread power outages that plunged the state into darkness and claimed lives. more than 240 people.
Edgar Sandoval, Mike Ives and Jenny Gross contribution report.
https://www.nytimes.com/2022/02/04/us/winter-storm-snow-ice-northeast.html A tenacious winter storm is now northeast in its sights