Weather

Winter Storm May Drop 18 Inches of Snow on Parts of New England

Heavy wet snow combined with strong wind gusts could lead to power outages

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A winter storm is on its way and winter storm warnings are in effect across the western stretch of New England from 7 p.m. Thursday this to 7 a.m. Saturday.

Elevations near and over 1,000 feet out may see heavy wet snow accumulating up to a foot or a foot and a half in isolated areas. Heavy wet snow bringing a load on cables along with strong wind gusts will increase the risk of power outages. 

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Snow line

Friday: We’ll see the snow line positioned out west, bringing all rain to eastern Massachusetts, eastern Connecticut and Rhode Island. Regardless of having rain only in these spots, the combination of strong wind will decrease visibility on the roads and ponding as well as hydroplaning will be a high risk. Ponding and some minor flooding can be expected in areas with poor drainage. Total rainfall amounts will range from an inch to 2 inches. 

Saturday: The back end of this system may very likely bring a quick burst of snow to eastern Massachusetts before it all comes to an end in the morning. This will cause slushy roads over areas that saw rain first and ended with snow. Snow will likely not accumulate in these roads but this could cause highly slippery conditions. 

Road impacts

There will be a high travel impact. Treacherous conditions will focus Thursday night out west and spread to eastern New England through Saturday morning. The heaviest snow will likely take place Thursday night into the first half of Saturday; the snowfall rate may reach an inch to two per hour. These high precipitation rates will decrease visibility and allow for rapidly accumulating snow and highly dangerous roads. With road temperatures dropping again Saturday night, back roads may continue highly slick. 

Wind

The wind may gust from 40 to 50 mph south and southeast. This will also affect our coastal areas, where we'll be watching for high waves. The coast of Connecticut is under a coastal flood statement through Thursday night with the potential to see up to half a foot of inundation along the immediate shore. Seas may rise 9 to 14 feet Friday afternoon and improve slowly by Saturday. 

Power outages

The wind and snow could lead to power outages across New England. National Grid said Thursday that they have been preparing, with more than 300 field-based crews and 1,000 personnel ready to respond to issues in Massachusetts.

Outages should be reported to your provider as soon as possible. As a reminder, always assume downed power lines are live and report them to the utility or local first responders. If you lose power and use a generator, make sure to use it safely outdoors.

Temperatures

Temperatures will remain cold through Saturday but grow even colder by Sunday along with sun. Sunny and quiet conditions take over Sunday through Wednesday of next week, with highs ranging in the mid to upper 30s. 

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