Nor’easter Sets Its Sights on the Northeast
More of New Jersey will be affected with higher amounts of snow according to new advisories about the storm issued by the National Weather Service as flights begin to be cancelled in anticipation of the snow.
Snow will begin falling across New Jersey late tonight, turn to rain during the day on Friday south of Interstate 78 but turn to heavy snow late Friday afternoon as conditions quickly deteriorate and may fall at a rate of 1-2 inches per hour for several hours on Friday night in most areas with occasional thunder.
The wet snow and wind gusts of up to 55 MPH along the coast could cause “significant power outages” according to the National Weather Service’s advisory about the nor’easter.
“We’re mobilizing & preparing for a major statewide storm w/ 1,400 snow plows & 650 salt-spreader trucks at the ready,” tweeted Governor Chris Christie. “New Jersey is ready for any contingency & we’re prepared to work around the clock starting this evening until storm passes & roads are clear.”
Some ice may mix in as temperatures will hover around the freezing mark along the coast and in southern counties.
Northern New Jersey is a different story as a Blizzard Warning is in effect for Hudson, Bergen, eastern Essex and eastern Union counties for 10-14 inches of snow with locally heavy amounts.
A Winter Storm Warning has been extended to include Ocean County to receive 4-8 inches of snow from the storm by the time it ends early Saturday morning and 6-10 inches a little further to the north in Monmouth, Mercer & Middlesex counties.
Further south, a Winter Weather Advisory is in effect for south Jersey with 2-5 inches expected to fall.
North of Interstate 78 it will likely remain a dry snow to the north and could fall at a rate of 1-2″ an hour on Friday night according to a briefing from the National Weather Service. Upwards of 10-16″ will be on the ground when the storm ends on Saturday morning with higher amounts the further north you are located.
The storm will also bring gusty winds of at least 40 MPH inland and 55 MPH along the coast where a Coastal Flood Warning has been issued for the possibility for moderate to major coastal flooding. The most significant impact will be at the sunrise high tide on Saturday morning with 5-7′ tides and significant wave action contributing to moderate to major beach erosion.
There is also concern the Raritan and Passaic rives will rise signifcantly during the Nor’easter.
Listen to Alan Kasper’s Nor’easter forecast
The aviation tracking website FlightAware shows United Airlines is already canceling more than 350 flights for Friday in advance of the storm. American has scrapped 43 flights.
FlightAware shows that airports with the most cancellations on Friday are Newark Liberty, Chicago O’Hare, and Boston Logan, in that order.
On Thursday, the biggest weather problems are in Chicago. O’Hare has seen 84 canceled departures.
A Blizzard Warning has been issued for Connecticut, Rhode Island and eastern Massachusetts with 18-24 inches of snow expected to fall Friday afternoon at the rate of 2-3 inches per hour. The National Weather Service’s Boston office describes the storm as potentially “historic.”
PSE+G says they are preparing for the storm by having all available personnel ready to respond to problems ranging from fallen power lines and trees to communicating with local officials starting on Friday.
NJ Transit will cross-honor tickets systemwide on Friday & Saturday and plans to operate on a normal train schedule. Bus schedules will be affected by road conditions that could cause delays.
The Port Authority of New York & New Jersey is preparing snow & ice melting equipment and materials for its bridges, rails, roadways and tunnels.
The Associated Press contributed to this story.