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Boston weather: Winter Storm and Blizzard Warnings in effect

The high temperatures for Southern New England on February 16, 2014.
The high temperatures for Southern New England on February 16, 2014.

Forecast discussion: I admit I usually update my daily forecasts during the evening. However, once I looked at the latest computer models earlier this afternoon, along with some updated warnings for eastern Massachusetts, I felt an earlier update was warranted.

Snowfall totals during brunt of storm on Saturday night, February 15, 2014

Right now, the National Weather Service still has a Winter Storm Warning in effect for the Boston metro area until 5 a.m. Sunday. The Blizzard Watch for the entire coastline, including Cape Cod and the Islands was upgraded to a Blizzard Warning. Also, a Coastal Flood Advisory is in effect for Barnstable County and Nantucket from 9 p.m. until 4 a.m. Sunday. This is mostly due to the high tide occurring around 11 p.m. tonight, and there is the slight chance of coastal flooding, especially along the north facing beaches.

The overall track of the low has not changed, but it will be a little more west than the previous model runs. So, this means we will see slighter higher snowfall amounts than what I forecasted last night. Already, parking bans and snow emergencies are in effect around the area. To view this information, click here.

Right now, the low’s center is located around 100 miles off the coast of North Carolina, and parallel to the Delmarva Peninsula. The low will continue to intensify as it moves in a northeast direction. We will begin to see heavy snow in the capital city by around 7 p.m. With winds increasing, some blowing and drifting snow remains possible. So, visibility will be near zero at times, especially along the south coast. So, if you must travel tonight, please take extreme caution. Due to the strengthening of the low, snowfall amounts may be coming down at 2 inches per hour. According to some more precise models, there is a decent chance of actually seeing thunder snow, especially in Bristol County and western Plymouth County. This would create snowfall of 3 to 4 inches per hour! By around 2 a.m. the heaviest snowfall will begin to taper off, with all snowfall shutting off by 5 a.m. To see how much snowfall your city or town will see, I will link you to view a snowfall map right here.

Sunday will be a breezy but calmer day, so we will have some time to dig ourselves out once again. By tomorrow night, it will be bitterly cold once again, thanks much in part of the new snowfall. Temperatures will fall into the lower teens, with wind chills of 0 to 5 above. We will remain dry into Sunday night, before we see yet another round of precipitation. However, it will start off as snow, but some warmer air coming up to the north will change the precipitation to rain. All precipitation ends by the late afternoon, as the cold front passes off to the east.

As we look into the extended forecast, we will see a little bit of a thaw. Temperatures will increase into the 40’s, with the slight chance of hitting 50 by Friday. However, there is the chance of seeing isolated to scattered showers on Wednesday, as a weak disturbance passes to our south. However, we will return to more normal temperatures by next Saturday, as the jet stream brings cooler air back down into New England. High temperatures next Saturday will only fall into the lower 40’s.

72 hour forecast:

Rest of today: Moderate snow up to 7 p.m. After 7 p.m. we will see heavy snow with strong winds of 30-35 mph with occasional gusts of 50 mph in Boston. We could see 1-2 inches per hour snowfall. Heavy snow tapers off by 2 a.m. with all precipitation ending by 6 a.m. We will have a high of about 36 and a low of 25.
Sunday: Mostly sunny and breezy with a high of 27. We will wake up to 6-10 inches in Boston, with 10-15 inches from southern Bristol County to the inner Cape and Nantucket Island. The outer Cape and Vineyard Haven will see 6-9 inches. Winds will come from the north-northwest at 17-22 with gusts up to 35 mph.
Sunday night: Partly cloudy and bitterly cold with a low of 11. Winds will come from the northwest at 9-12 mph.
Monday: Partly to mostly sunny with a high of 27.
Monday night: Cloudy with light snow starting around 4 a.m. and a low of 19.
Tuesday: Light snow to a wintry mix until the early afternoon, before changing to rain. All precipitation ends by the late afternoon. We will see a high of 38.
Tuesday night: Mostly cloudy with a low of 27.

Extended Forecast:
Wednesday: Mostly cloudy with isolated showers possible by mid-morning and lasting through the late afternoon. Highs 41-44, lows 31-34.
Thursday: Partly to mostly sunny. Highs 44-47, lows 34-37.
Friday: Cloudy with showers around 1 a.m. and ending by the early evening. Highs 49-52, lows 33-36.
Saturday: Partly to mostly sunny and cooler. Highs 41-44, lows 25-28.

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