Thursday 10 a.m.
This video shows the expected storm scenario from now through the coming weekend. In addition to the disruption caused by any wintry precipitation and wind, this storm could cause much more difficulty than the typical storm. In the area close to the snow-rain line, heavy wet snow will fall and it will be very windy. This can lead to power outages and extensive tree damage. Farther back in the snow area where it is a little colder, the wind will help to prevent snow from sticking to power lines and weighing down trees. The wind-whipped snow along with furiously falling and flowing flakes can create white-out, blizzard conditions at times.
This map represents our thinking as of mid-morning Thursday. However, we are frequently meeting and collaborating as new information comes in. That's why we encourage you to check out the latest on accuweather.com. (Premium and pro subscribers can see all the models we look at as they are released, plus lots of other useful and cool things.)
Lake-effect snow hit Chicago this morning. This happens when cold winds at low cloud height are from the northeast. When the flow is from the west or northwest, the Michigan and/or Indiana snow belts come alive. These maps show the setup from this morning.
This map shows a low pressure center along a cold front that will cross the Eastern states today. From southern Pennsylvania southward, a few thunderstorms can develop this afternoon and evening, but everyone in the Middle and North Atlantic state should get some rain.
One way of displaying a forecast is by using a meteogram. Items like temperature, wind and precipitation are distributed across a chart so you can see what is supposed to happen and when. This cart is a meteogram for New York City. Three details are highlighted.
Thunderstorms broke out last night ahead of the warm front that will bring milder air to the Northeast on Thursday. Hundreds of lightning strokes occurred from Nebraska and Missouri into western Illinois. This picture shows a shaft of lightning about a mile from my home a couple of years ago.
Video: all the excitement of watching paint dry. This six-hour time lapse from Saturday, March 21, shows a parade of clouds overhead and the progressive melting of snow that fell heavily in central Pennsylvania the day before.
This map shows the storm causing today's area of snow, but with west to east flow, shows why the weather right behind the storm should be milder tomorrow. The cold front in the northwest corner arrives Sunday.