SUSSEX COUNTY, NJ - The National Weather Service has kept the Winter Storm Warning (defined as a winter storm about to occur, or in process) in effect through 6 a.m. Saturday morning, with heavy snow expected to taper off in the morning.
Depending on the part of the county, the accumulations will vary between six to 12 inches. A trace of ice may also be expected. And, accumulations in Morris County may exceed that of Sussex County.
According to the Winter Storm Warning posted, travel will be treacherous, with visibility down to one-half a mile, due to wind gusts of up to 20 to 30 miles per hour, at the height of the storm.
In GeoEnvironmental Atmosphere's forecast
, a low pressure system is intensifying, bringing about the heavier snow later on tonight and overnight. That, combined with an inverted trough (an area of low atmospheric pressure, which, normally run south to north, and in this case, runs north to south), will create blizzard-like conditions throughout the Tri-State area.
In some points north and east of Sussex County, which at some times during the storm will yield about one inch of snow per hour, there will be conditions of thundersnow (a thunderstorm in which snow falls instead of rain), and at times three or more inches of precipitation in an hour, out towards Long Island, Rhode Island, Connecticut, and Massachusetts (one of our readers in Rhode Island is already reporting heavy winds and fallen trees from this winter storm).
Of our area, GeoEnvironmental Atmosphere summarized, "To the south, lighter amounts are forecasted. In New York City, this is a very serious event, and is also a very serious event for Northeast Pennsylvania, and North New Jersey. However as one descends South, snowfall totals will decrease. Snowfall amounts may even be a touch lower than the forecast above if not located under banding. A very powerful winter storm is impacting New York City, and the surrounding locations. Throughout the night, the conditions will worsen there. Please follow all driving restrictions if told to do so. Farther south, the storm will pivot, and these locations will receive a light snowfall."
The National Weather Service tonight said winds could gust up to 40 miles per hour inland, and 50 miles per hour in coastal areas.
"Combination of high winds and wet snow will produce a threat of serious power outages," said Gary Szatkowski of the National Weather Service earlier tonight.
Local municipalities are asking residents to avoid travel until the storm is over, not only for reasons of personal safety, but to allow departments of public works to maintain the roads efficiently during the event. Many businesses are closed tonight and tomorrow, and activities cancelled, or postponed.