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Here Comes an 'All-Out Blizzard'

Winter Storm Harper is expected to strike the Northeast this weekend
By Neal Colgrass,  Newser Staff
Posted Jan 19, 2019 9:45 AM CST
Bikers crossing Park Street at the intersection of University Ave during a late afternoon snow storm Friday, Jan. 18, 2019 in Madison, Wis.   (Steve Apps/Wisconsin State Journal via AP)
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(Newser) – Parts of America already know, but a big winter storm is heading east and will likely pummel New England this weekend. Winter Storm Harper is expected to drop up to two feet of snow and create blizzard conditions in some areas as winter storm warnings are in effect from the Dakotas through the Great Lakes states and into the Northeast, Fox News reports. South Dakota and southern Minnesota already have up to a foot of snow, while Nebraska—where a Southwest Airlines plane slid off an icy runway Friday—is under light freezing rain, per the Weather Channel. Now Chicago's O'Hare and Midway international airports have canceled more than 300 flights and Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf has declared a state of emergency. Among the forecasts:

  • Blizzard: Snowfall and strong winds are expected to create "an all-out blizzard" in the Northeast that will likely close parts of Interstates 79, 80, 81, 86, 87, 89, 90 and 91, per AccuWeather, which adds: "Errands should be completed before the storm hits."
  • Slippery roads: Watch for possible freezing rain and sleet—and slippery roads—from Arkansas into the mid-Atlantic states and, on Saturday night, into southern New England and the lower Hudson Valley.
  • Heavy snow: The heaviest snowfall is expected across a swath of the Northeast including Boston, New York City, Philadelphia, Baltimore, and Washington, DC, from late Saturday into Sunday. Snow is also likely in areas of the Appalachians from Tennessee to western Pennsylvania on Sunday.
  • Flooding: The Long Island and New England coasts may see "minor to moderate coastal flooding," mostly during Sunday morning's high tide, says Weather.com.
  • Freezing: Watch for a flash freeze from Boston to New York in areas where the temperature goes above freezing. A possible ice buildup in some of northern Virginia and New England's southern coast could bring down power lines and trees.
  • Next week: After the storm, snow may keep falling downwind of lakes Ontario and Erie while cold winds will likely keep blowing in the central Appalachians and coastal mid-Atlantic through Monday and in New England on Tuesday. Expect school closures and delays.
(Read more winter storm stories.)

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