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Snow blankets tri-state in late-winter storm; here’s what to expect

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NEW YORK — A surprising late-winter storm hit the tri-state Friday, causing a potentially dangerous, slick morning rush-hour commute and officially putting an end to the week's warm(ish) weather.

A winter storm warning is in effect for eastern Suffolk County, where 4 to 7 inches of snow is expected. Snowfall will occur around daybreak and become heavy by mid-morning to the early afternoon, according to the National Weather Service.

The advisory expires at 4 p.m.

Across much of the tri-state area, a winter weather advisory warns of 3 to 5 inches of accumulation. The advisory lasts through 2 p.m., estimating snow will develop from north to south and become heaviest during the morning commute.

Snow began to fall in NYC shortly before 7 a.m., and was forecast to strike central and southern New Jersey shortly thereafter.

PIX11 crews cruised through Suffolk County during the morning commute, and although traffic was light, the roads were slick.

Dozens of schools in the area are also closed as a result of the storm. Click here to see a full list. 

Total accumulations will be lightest in NYC and central and southern New Jersey, with 2 to 3 inches expected.

Three to 6 inches will accumulate in Westchester, the lower Hudson Valley, and Nassau and western Suffolk counties; and 6 to 8 inches in eastern Suffolk County and coastal Connecticut.

Snow should stop before the afternoon commute, tapering off around lunchtime in NYC and northern New Jersey, 2 p.m. in central New Jersey and Central Long Island, and 4 p.m. for eastern Long Island.

Visibility during the storm will be one quarter to a half-mile at times, and may include periods of sleek and freezing rain, causing hazardous travel conditions, the weather service warns.

Temperatures will hover around freezing during the storm.

While the snow will end as the weekend begins, bitter cold arctic air will continue, with highs in the upper 20s to low 30s and wind chills in the single digits continuing.

PIX11's Joseph Punday contributed to this report.