1-03-2018: 1-04 Storm Update #2

Good evening! Here is a quick update on tomorrow’s storm. Dracut Schools are already officially CLOSED for tomorrow.
This storm will pretty much cancel any plans you have tomorrow, with snow starting in the late overnight and early morning hours on Thursday. Heavy snow will fall throughout the day and end by late evening.
Increased confidence in higher precipitation and additional westward nudges in precipitation has led to yet another snowfall forecast increase: 12-16″ with isolated higher amounts in most of eastern MA, northeast RI and southeast NH, including Dracut; 8-12″ with some higher amounts possible for central Massachusetts, northeast CT, a small portion of southeast MA and the majority for New Hampshire; 4-8″ with some higher amounts possible for northern and most of western New Hampshire as well as western Massachusetts and southern Vermont; 2-4″ for the lower Cape Cod and most of Martha’s Vineyard; 0-2″ for Nantucket and the rest of Cape Cod. The snow will be fluffier in NH/Maine/Vermont, most of northern CT, and western/central/interior northeast MA, with coastal northeast MA and interior east-central MA being somewhat wetter; a heavy wet snow is expected in southeast New England.
snow map 2018-01-03 500P.png
This will be the bigger issue with the storm for a lot of people. Wind gusts of 35-40 mph are likely for the Dracut area with perhaps a few slightly higher gusts not out of the question. Higher wind gusts over 50 mph are likely closer to the coast (over 55 mph likely for the southeast coast), with lower wind gusts further inland. This, plus heavy snow, will produce blizzard conditions at times. (More on the “bigger issue” thing in a minute.)
Heavy snow will combine with strong winds to create very hazardous travel conditions, with not only the classic snow-related travel issues, but also near-blizzard to blizzard conditions being likely at times. Travel will be extremely difficult on Thursday as a result, and should only be done in an emergency. Power outages are also possible considering the strong winds.
Also, any power outages will be very bad because of the impending cold, which could create dangerous conditions even for a few days. (More on the cold in a minute.) Downed tree limbs and power lines are possible due to the strong winds.
The National Weather Service has continued the Winter Storm Warning as an official blizzard is unlikely: sustained winds of 35+ mph or frequent gusts of 35+ mph, AND less than 1/4 mile visibility, BOTH for three CONSECUTIVE hours. Nonetheless, these conditions are likely at times.
Mid teens to mid 20s during the storm; high of 26 on Thursday. After the snow ends, the low plunges to around 7 degrees in Dracut Thursday night.
Beyond that, Friday through Sunday will be frigid with highs around 10 on Friday and 3 on Saturday, and 15 on Sunday, with cold mornings on both sides of the -10 level. This will exacerbate any power outage impacts.
Have a great night!!

Published by Nathan Coram

Hello! I'm Nathan Coram, a 20 year old meteorology student and weather geek, and am in my junior year at UMass Lowell as a meteorology major. I am the current Vice President of the UML American Meteorological Society Local Student Chapter. Prior to at UML, I attended the Dracut school system for my K-12 years, having graduated from Dracut High in 2018. I first got into weather with the December 2008 ice storm, which knocked out my electricity for 4 days. I had no idea how it could be raining and becoming ice immediately, and how rain can knock out power. (Now I do - warm layer aloft, cold air at surface). But I didn't really get into it until the heat of July 2010 and specifically a few severe weather events during that month, followed by the year 2011, which featured several high profile weather events. Since then I have had a growing interest, and am hoping to make it into the meteorology field, preferably with NOAA/NWS. But for now, I'm blogging here on Dracut Weather (also on Twitter and Facebook), helping with the UML Weather Center social media, and tweeting about the weather on my own account as well. Thanks for visiting!

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