ACCUWEATHER - Heavy snow and travel disruptions will spread from the Midwest and into the Northeast as the day progresses Saturday.
The snowstorm will span more than 1,000 miles. Snow will fall on and impact every major city and rural area from St. Louis to Boston, including Chicago, Detroit, Cincinnati, Cleveland, Pittsburgh, Philadelphia and New York City. The area encompasses about 110 million people.
Thanks to recent Arctic air making roads and sidewalks much colder compared to previous storms, enough snow to shovel and plow is in store from parts of Missouri, Illinois, Indiana, West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland and New Jersey to much of Ohio, Pennsylvania, New York, Massachusetts, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine.
Not only will the storm make roads and sidewalks slippery, raising the risk for slip-and-fall incidents and auto accidents, but it is likely to cause many flight delays and cancellations. The visibility will be poor, runways will become snow covered and aircraft will need to be de-iced.
The storm could cause shipping delays and force Christmas shoppers to change their plans for the weekend.
The storm will move from the Midwest to the Northeast during the course of Saturday and Saturday night.
A mixture of snow, sleet and rain will mitigate accumulations across central Missouri and eastward along the Ohio River. However, enough wintry mix will fall to make roads slippery.
Long stretches of the I-70, I-75, I-80 and I-90 corridors may be snow covered in the Midwest, especially since the snow may come down at the rate of an inch per hour in some areas. Many areas between I-70 and I-80 in Illinois, Indiana and Ohio will receive 3 to 6 inches from the storm with local amounts to 10 inches. This includes Champaign, Ill., Lafayette, Ind., and Findlay, Ohio.
A quick change to plain rain is likely from Roanoke, Va., to Washington, D.C., and Baltimore with little or no accumulation to up to an inch or so. Some roads may be slippery.
However, farther northeast along the I-95 corridor, the change to rain following snow and/or a wintry mix will take longer, leading to several inches accumulation and more widespread slippery travel.
Snow and a wintry mix are likely to impact play during the Army-Navy Classic on Saturday afternoon and evening at Lincoln Financial Field in Philadelphia. This wintry game will occur just less than a week after heavy snow fell during the Eagles-Lions game. Snow buried the field and had players sliding and shoveling snow with their feet during last Sunday's game.
Farther north over the Midwest and into western and northern Pennsylvania to western New York, where the cold air hangs on longer or lingers through the duration of the storm, heavy snow will fall with some communities receiving 6 inches of snow. Roads will be slushy to snow covered over much of the I-80, I-81, I-87, I-88, I-90 and I-95 corridors.
In part of the Northeast the snowfall rate will increase to 1 to 3 inches per hour during the height of the storm. Snowfall rates this intense can overwhelm road crews and a heavy dose of ice melting compounds. The only thing that will prevent this storm from delivering a large swath of 2 to 3 feet of snow will be is relatively fast movement.
A general swath of 6- to 12-inch snowfall is likely to reach from part of central Pennsylvania through the Pocono and Catskill mountains and into much of the Hudson Valley of New York, northern Connecticut, central and western Massachusetts, Vermont, New Hampshire and Maine. However, some locations from upstate New York into northern New England can receive between 12 and 18 inches from this storm.
In much of New England, the storm will linger into Sunday with ongoing travel disruptions. While flurries will occur over the central and southern Appalachians and downwind of the Great Lakes over the Midwest, the storm will be over across the Ohio Valley and coastal mid-Atlantic, and travel conditions will improve.
Areas made wet and slushy from melting during the day on Sunday will freeze on Sunday night, producing patches of black ice.
WTTG FOX 5 & myfoxdc
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