Following closely behind on the heels of winter storms Cleon and Dion, another system containing wintery weather is bearing down on about one-third of the United States. Winter storm Electra is poised to begin developing in the Midwest Thursday evening into Friday and then track northeast over the weekend, dumping snow and ice.
As Electra gains momentum from the moist air coming out of the Gulf Thursday, it will increase the amount of precipitation it drops over an area from eastern Kansas into northern portions of Missouri and Arkansas and western Illinois. People living in these areas should be aware of icy roadways and slick bridges. But, because the mixed precipitation could change over to rain during the nighttime hours, forecasters are not expecting significant accumulations of ice on roads, powerlines and trees.
By Friday mid-day, Electra should be dumping snow over the Ohio Valley and Great Lakes. However, the heaviest snowfall should not occur until well after evening rush hour. The snow will continue to fall over these areas through Saturday morning as the system moves northeast. The northern portion of Pennsylvania may yield some pretty significant amounts of snow which could total close to a foot. The same thing could occur in portions of New England including Albany, NY, Scranton, PA and Concord, NH. Additionally, wind speeds will increase across New England late Saturday and early Sunday which could cause blizzard-like conditions.
Up until now, New England has had it relatively easy as far as winter weather is concerned. While nearly 2/3 of the US is now covered by snow, people living in the Northeast have escaped with just a few minor winter storms. But, now that Electra is heading that way, snow amounts in New England could be significant. There is definitely potential for over six inches of snow and especially further inland where forecasters are not ruling out a foot or more. That could prove problematic on a weekend when many people will be heading out to do holiday shopping. People in New England are already being told to keep an eye on local forecasts and to plan their outings accordingly.