Forecast discussion: Thursday started with some light snow making it into Providence around 5 a.m. As the morning wore on, the snow became heavier, but not until the end of the morning commute. The northern part of Rhode Island stayed as snow through the morning. During the late morning, precipitation started to change over to ice pellets and sleet. The northeastern part of the state then changed over to rain by the early afternoon. Meanwhile, the northwestern part of the state stayed as snow. Burrillville received 9 inches of snow, with Cumberland receiving 6.5 inches. Providence received between 3 and 4 inches.
For Thursday night, we are seeing a slight lull in the precipitation, before the next batch shows up around 10 p.m. Any showers will slowly change over to snow showers during the overnight. We will not see any further accumulation by tomorrow morning. However, roads may be tough to travel on, due to icy conditions from a mixture of snow and rain, on top of the slush as we cleaned up from Thursday’s storm. Despite the added low accumulations, northwest Rhode Island will remain under a winter Storm Warning until 7 a.m. on Friday.
By Friday afternoon, we will see limited sunshine, and temperatures will get above freezing. This will allow for a little more melting. However, we may be seeing yet another system bringing us some light snow early Saturday morning. The low is currently over Wisconsin, and will travel east-southeast into the Mid-Atlantic for Saturday. If the system continues to track to the south, we will only see some snow showers for the day. Also, this low will strengthen, so we will see increasing winds into Saturday night. Skies will begin to clear after midnight, but we will return to colder temperatures for Sunday and Monday.
As we head into Monday night, another system will pull through New England by early Tuesday morning. The cold front looks rather weak, and warmer air from the south will slowly work into Southern New England. So, snow showers may become a wintry mix or change to plain rain by the middle of Tuesday morning. All precipitation will come to an end by Tuesday afternoon.
As you can see in the long range forecast, the Northeast U.S. will begin to see a slight February thaw. Although we will not see a full upper level ridge like the people on the west coast, the jet stream will allow for warmer air to reach the area. Daytime highs are forecast to reach the middle 40’s by next Thursday. However, a warm front over Southern New England will also bring the risk of some showers or possibly steady rain.
72 hour forecast:
Tonight: Fog with showers and light rain slowly turning to light snow again after midnight. Only a coating to half an inch is possible into Friday morning. We will see a low of 30. Winds will be increasing towards morning.
Friday: Breezy with light snow ending around 9 a.m. with partly sunny skies by the afternoon. We will see a high of 36 with winds from the west-southwest at 19-24 mph with gusts of 35 mph.
Friday night: Mostly cloudy with snow showers possible by 4 a.m. and a low of 26. Winds will decrease to 2-5 mph from the west-southwest.
Saturday: Mostly cloudy with light snow and increasing winds with a high of 36.
Saturday night: Snow showers end before midnight with clearing skies. It will turn colder with a low of 18.
Sunday: Mostly sunny and breezy with a high of 26.
Sunday night: Partly cloudy and bitterly cold with a low of 9.
Monday: Partly to mostly sunny with possible light snow before midnight. Highs 27-30, lows 19-22.
Tuesday: Light snow changing to wintry mix mid-morning, ending by the early afternoon. Highs 40-43, lows 26-29.
Wednesday: Partly to mostly sunny. Highs 41-44, lows 31-34.
Thursday: Mostly cloudy with possible showers by the evening. Highs 44-47, lows 32-35.