By Steven Strouss
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — The groundhog predicted an early Spring last week but additional signs of winter are just around the corner.
Winter doesn’t officially end until March 20, (41 days away for those counting) so it only seems fair that we will have more snow chances and Arctic outbreaks.
A Winter Storm Watch has been issued for Southern PA, Southern NJ and northern DE late tonight through Tuesday. Light snow is expected to develop overnight and continue intermittently through the day tomorrow. This is a tough forecast to nail down snow amounts because our forecast guidance is all over the place. Some models bring us a little as half an inch in Philadelphia while other weather models like the NAM (North American Model – typically biased with more moisture) give us nearly 8″.
The trouble exists because there will be some coastal enhancement as this system swings down from the Great lakes but it remains to be seen how much rain/snow gets thrown back to the west. For now, we think a general 1-3″ for the region but it is likely some areas will end up with 3-6″ especially south of Philadelphia where steadier, heavier bands of snow set up. Snow could also mix with rain closer to the coast and that will cut down on snow accumulations. Regardless of the snow totals, the impacts will include slick and slow commutes, reduced visibility, gusty winds, coastal flooding, and other possible air and ground delays. Be prepared for an all day event but afternoon high temperatures will be just above freezing and that will assist with melting on treated roads.
After the storm, Wednesday will be blustery with flurries but the Arctic air that moves in behind it will be the coldest of the season.
Temperatures will take a nose dive late week and we could remain below freezing for several days. Highs will only be in the 20s during the weekend and there is another chance for snow Friday night into Saturday morning. Valentine’s Day will be frigid so bundle up with your sweetheart as wind chills Sunday may remain in the single digits.