BOSTON (CBS) - Is it me or did winter sneak up on us a bit this year? Hard to believe that a week from now we will be throwing the Turkeys in the oven and Christmas music will start to take over the airwaves. I blame fall. It felt like we didn't even have one. Summer just ended and it started raining…and raining…and raining.
And now, all of a sudden it has gotten cold and we are talking about snow. Alas, this is New England, and we certainly have grown accustomed to rolling with the weather punches…and really this storm is more of a winter jab than a knockout blow.
So let's get to it…Winter Storm Number 1
First flakes arrive from south to north tonight.
Approximate snowfall arrival times:
Hartford- Providence 4-6 p.m.
Boston-Worcester 6-8 p.m.
Southern New Hampshire 7-9 p.m.
This storm is what we call a classic front end "thump" of snow. You get 3-5 hours of solid snowfall and then suddenly a flip to sleet and rain and your snowfall is done just like that.
Timing that changeover is key in predicting snowfall amounts…if the snow hangs on an extra hour or two, that means a few more inches of snow…and of course the opposite is also true, a quick change and you get next to nothing.
We are anticipating warmer air moving in at higher levels of the atmosphere rather quickly from Midnight onward. Between 1-4am, the snowfall will end in all of Southern New England, leaving us with rain inside of I-495 and an icy mix north and west of there.
By Friday morning commute time temperatures at the surface have warmed above freezing in all of eastern Massachusetts. The only pink (sleet/freezing rain) left on the map will be in some of the higher elevations of northern Worcester County, the Berkshires and southwest New Hampshire.
The rain will taper off Friday afternoon and by the PM commute, we are all done.
3"-6" The highest amounts of snow will fall where you might expect they would in mid-November - well inland and in somewhat elevated locations including the Monadnock Region and Worcester Hills. We also expect 3-6" around and just inside the I-495 belt from Marlboro to Lowell to Haverhill.
1"-3" Around the 128 loop and away from the immediate coastline, most of which will be washed away after temperatures rise and subsequently change the snow to rain. Downtown Boston is within this range.
Coating – 1" Right along the immediate coastline (including Logan Airport) and down toward the Cape and Islands, there will be a light accumulation in the first few hours of the event and then it will all be quickly washed away.
The main concern with this storm is the snow and ice and its effects on the roads. A secondary concern with this event will be the winds along the immediate coastline and especially over Cape Cod and the Islands. Gusts along the Coast could top 40 mph (where there is a wind advisory) and over the Cape and Islands (where a high wind warning has been issued) they could reach 60 mph. Gusts of that strength would cause some scattered wind damage and power outages. The winds may gust to 40-50 mph along the Coast and over the Cape and Islands during the storm.
And, with tides being astronomically low, there are no coastal flooding concerns.
This is just the beginning! A mere appetizer for the winter to come. Curious about how cold or snowy the winter of 2018-2019 might be? Tune into WBZ at 11 p.m. Thursday night for our official winter forecast!
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