Weekend gets off to frigid start in NY, NJ ahead of winter storm


NEW YORK (PIX11) — It was a frigid start to the weekend with a temperature reading of 10 degrees before topping out at 21 at Central Park. The bitter cold and howling winds made it feel like below zero across the Tri-State. There were even reports of wind chills as low as -20 degrees in the upper Hudson Valley. 

Another dangerously cold night is on tap as temperatures bottom out around 12 degrees in the city. Even though winds will likely diminish Saturday night, there is a strong arctic high pressure in place across the region that will send wind chills into the single digits and below zero.

Then we turn our attention to the winter storm arriving Sunday evening. Although highs are slated to max out in the upper 30s on Sunday, temperatures will be slow to rise. There’s a good chance that highs won’t be reached until after 10pm and continue to increase through the overnight. This will aid in the transition from snow to rain.

Based on latest model observations, the storm arrives between 6pm and 8pm Sunday evening. Keep in mind that as temperatures warm, the ground will still be cold. Therefore, freezing rain is possible. Locations north of I-95 will likely get the most snow with areas south and east with mainly rain. The height of the storm is expected to get underway overnight. Anticipate heavy precipitation during this time with wind gusts up to about 70 mph, especially near the coast. The morning commute will be a mess, so plan accordingly.

With the gravitational pull from the full moon combined with heavy rain and strong winds, coastal flooding will be a concern especially during times of high tides. The storm is slated to taper off by Sunday morning. However, there is a chance of a few lingering showers into the afternoon.

When it comes to snow totals, expect little to no accumulation near the coast. Places north and west of the city are expected to get higher snow totals with 8-10 possible in Sullivan, Ulster, and Dutchess Counties, 3-6 inches possible across Orange, Putnam, and Sussex Counties. Expect less accumulations points south with little to no accumulation near the coast. Rainfall totals will range between an inch and an inch and a half. Expect a slushy mess because of mixed precipitation with some of the totals getting washed away by rain.

As temperatures fall throughout the day, whatever is left on the ground will likely freeze. Colder air will settle across the region on Tuesday. Temperatures will be a bit milder on Wednesday courtesy of a warm front. Finally, a clipper system is slated to arrive bringing rain and snow showers late Wednesday night into Thursday followed by a return of colder temperatures.

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