UPDATE: Large winter storm- What you need to know
Mon, 31 Jan 2011 12:58:47 GMT —
Read below for many updates including specific timing details and accumulations across our area. I have also changed the amount of snow you can expect. Read ahead for details!
A winter storm warning has been issued for all of central New York, including Syracuse, Watertown, Utica, Ithaca, Cortland, Auburn and all surrounding areas including the Mohawk Valley, North Country, and Finger Lakes region, in anticipation for the second stage of heavier snow that will begin after midnight tonight. Two separate systems are impacting a large area of the United States with either snow, rain or a wintry mixture of precipitation. Snow is occurring in Oklahoma northeastbound to Chicago where Blizzard warnings are in effect in anticipation for a record amount of snow backed by winds over 35 MPH. Snow will then slide straight east towards Michigan, southern Ontario, upstate New York and New England. A mixed mess of sleet, freezing rain and ice will likely occur just to the south of the main area of snow. While sleet (ice pellets) does not cause major impactful road conditions, freezing rain can cause ice accumulations on roads, power lines and trees. The highest risk for icing appears to be from eastern Oklahoma northeastward to near St. Louis, Indianapolis, Cleveland, and then eastbound into northern and central Pennsylvania eastward to New Jersey and possibly around the New York City area. Instead of seeing his shadow, Punxsutawney Phil, may end up seeing sheets of ice on Groundhog's Day. This will be large and impactful storm for many parts of the country. If you have travel plans between Tuesday and Wednesday, flights may be cancelled. You will want to call ahead to your airline and also keep an eye on this website for potential airport problems. There are already a number of airport closures due to problematic weather.
Here in central New York, our snowy impacts from the first system have already pushed through with a general 1-3" amount of snow fall. Here some observed reports from the first system that has already passed through:
...BROOME COUNTY... 3 SE CHENANGO FORKS 4.0 845 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 2 SSE WHITNEY POINT 3.7 900 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 5 SSE ENDICOTT 2.5 800 AM 2/01 COCORAHS WHITNEY POINT DAM 1.5 700 AM 2/01 CO-OP OBSERVER...CAYUGA COUNTY... AUBURN 1.1 700 AM 2/01 CO-OP OBSERVER AURORA RESEARCH FARM 1.0 700 AM 2/01 CO-OP OBSERVER
...CHENANGO COUNTY... 4 NNE SHERBURNE 2.1 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 5 W NORWICH 1.9 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS...CORTLAND COUNTY... 2 E WILLET 4.5 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 1 NW MARATHON 3.0 730 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 2 SW FREETOWN 1.8 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS...MADISON COUNTY... W EARLVILLE 2.2 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS MORRISVILLE 1.8 700 AM 2/01 CO-OP OBSERVER...ONONDAGA COUNTY... 2 E MARCELLUS 2.8 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 2 NNW POMPEY 2.5 730 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 5 NW CLAY 1.2 745 AM 2/01 COCORAHS...OTSEGO COUNTY... ONEONTA 3.5 700 AM 2/01 CO-OP OBSERVER 2 N UNADILLA 3.1 700 AM 2/01 CO-OP OBSERVER 1 ESE RICHFIELD SPRI 1.2 730 AM 2/01 COCORAHS...TOMPKINS COUNTY... SE CAROLINE CENTER 3.2 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 1 S SLATERVILLE SPRI 2.8 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 5 E EAST ITHACA 2.6 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS WNW TRUMANSBURG 2.5 735 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 3 SSW GROTON 2.3 730 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 1 ENE ENFIELD 2.0 700 AM 2/01 COCORAHS 1 NW GROTON 1.3 630 AM 2/01 COCORAHS
The more important and more impactful storm begins after midnight and during the pre-dawn hours of Wednesday. The second, much stronger system will bring a steadier, much heavier batch of precipitation into our area. Widespread heavy snow across the area will probably mix in with some sleet or possibly freezing rain the further south you travel during Wednesday. Regardless, Groundhog's Day Wednesday will be a very messy and tough travel day. Exact warm air intrusion aloft will ultimately determine what areas will see the most sleet or possibly freezing rain mixing in with snow. I expect most of the southern tier and southern Finger Lakes to see a conversion to sleet and freezing rain. Some wintry mixture could even reach as far north as the Route 5 and Thruway corridor for a little while on Wednesday. However, from the Route 31 corridor north across north-central and northern New York, the risk for any wintry mixture is much lower. When sleet and freezing rain mixes in, it tends to drastically reduce total accumulations. This makes exact forecasting extra difficult. My forecast calls for a wide swath of 8-12" of snow for much of the Thruway corridor, north-central New York and to near the Route 20 corridor. Further south across the central and southern tier and Finger Lakes regions, I am forecasting 4-8" of snow mixed with wintry slop. Far northern New York will also have 4-8" of snow, but no wintry mixture. A steady and increasing easterly wind will blow between 10-20 MPH. During Wednesday night, expect additional snow showers and flurries with some more accumulations likely. The exact track and intensity of this second storm will ultimately determine if we get more or less snow and more or less wintry mixture. Stay tuned online and on-air for updates on the storm.
Between all of the snow and the tough temperatures from this morning, are you getting sick of the winter weather yet? Tell us your thoughts and feelings by commenting on the bottom of this web story.
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