Blizzard and winter storm warnings have been issued for parts of the East Coast, ahead of a powerful Nor’easter that is expected to drop two feet or more of snow, bring intense wind gusts, and prompt coastal flooding to New England on Saturday.
A statement by the National Weather Service (NWS) Friday said the Nor’easter is expected to develop off the Mid-Atlantic coastline on Friday before impacting eastern parts of the Northeast and New England this weekend.
Moderate to heavy snow and gusts are forecast to begin along the Mid-Atlantic and Northeast coasts on Friday evening as the low arrives off the coast of North Carolina, the agency said.
“Numerous hazards are likely from heavy snow, with significant accumulations across eastern Long Island/New England, to gusty winds and coastal issues. In fact, the combination of the snow and winds may result in blizzard conditions,” the NWS statement added.
Some heavy snow is also expected to fall in Central and Southern Appalachians.
Heavy snow and fierce winds are then expected to develop over New England on Saturday as the Nor’easter intensifies off the Northeast coast. Blizzards are forecast from eastern Long Island through much of coastal New England, particularly from southeast Maine to Cape Cod, the NWS said. The NWS said these conditions will make travel “nearly impossible.”
“Significant beach erosion and coastal flooding will also be a concern,” the NWS added.
The NWS said heaviest snow is likely to fall across the area spanning from the Eastern Shore of Maryland up through most of Maine, where 6-12 inches are likely.
Parts of coastal New England, where blizzards are expected, may see between 1-2 feet of snow with locally higher amounts possible, especially over coastal Massachusetts. Snow and strong winds will wind down across the Northeast on Sunday.
The Nor’easter will leave “bitter cold air” in its wake, causing temperatures to plummet across eastern United States on Saturday.
The NWS said highs will be 15-25 degrees below average in most places impacted by the storm. Temperatures will begin to rise again across the region by Monday, it said.
“There is still uncertainty about how close to the coast the storm will track, which will determine how far west (inland) the heavy snow will push. There will likely be a sharp drop-off in snow totals on the western side,” NWS Eastern region tweeted.
WHDH reported that coastal areas in Barnstable, Dukes, Essex, Norfolk, Plymouth, and Suffolk counties are under a blizzard warning from 7 a.m. Saturday until 5 a.m. Sunday. The news channel reported that Boston will is issuing its first blizzard warning since January 2018 over the weekend.