East Enduring Major Post-Christmas Winter Storm

By , Senior Meteorologist
December 26, 2012; 5:26 AM ET
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Play video Breaking weather is detailed in the above AccuWeather.com video.

After slamming the southern Plains and Deep South on Christmas Day, a powerful winter storm will continue to invade more of the eastern Great Lakes and Northeast through Thursday.

As proven already on Christmas Day, the storm is complete with substantial snow, an icy mix, soaking rain, strong winds and severe weather.

Snow Totals to Top a Foot

On the storm's cold northern and western flank, substantial snow will spread will continue to invade more of the eastern Great Lakes and interior Northeast through Thursday.

More than a foot of snow will bury places from northeastern Ohio and northwestern Pennsylvania to northern Maine and neighboring communities in Canada's St. Lawrence Valley.

http://vortex.accuweather.com/adc2004/pub/includes/columns/newsstory/2012/400x266_12262222_snowmap.jpg

Cities in line to receive at least or more than a foot of snow include Buffalo, Syracuse, Rochester, Burlington and Caribou.

A half of a foot or more of snow will alone clog roads and severely disrupt travel and daily routines, but gusty winds will worsen the situation by blowing and drifting the snow around.

Soaking Rain to Bring Flash Flood Threat

Severe weather was not the only concern on the storm's warm side, but also torrential rain capable of causing urban and flash flooding.

Rain will continue to spread northward across the mid-Atlantic and southern New England through Thursday morning.

The heaviest rain and accompanying flash flood threat will reach Philadelphia and New York City tonight and Boston late tonight into Thursday morning.

Icy, Wintry Mix Another Concern

This potent winter storm is expected to unleash nothing but snow from Illinois to northern New England, while plain rain soaks the mid-Atlantic coast. In between, the snow will either mix with or the rain will start as a wintry mix.

Rain will continue to be preceded by an icy mix at the winter storm's onset along I-95 corridor north of Philadelphia.

Just because heavy snow is not falling, motorists should not take the wintry mix lightly. With sleet (ice pellets) and freezing rain involved, roads could still turn slick for a time.

Coastal Flooding/Damaging Winds Along Northeast Coast

As the heaviest rain invades the Northeast, strong winds will develop along the coast.

The burst of strong winds will then push northward along the coast into Thursday, whipping through Long Island and New York City during the evening and overnight hours of today and Boston later tonight.

The strongest winds will gust between 50 and 60 mph for a time, threatening to cause tree damage and power outages. The combination of the winds and higher astronomical tides could also lead to coastal flooding.

Conditions throughout the East Coast will improve on Friday, when a new storm may be gathering in the Deep South.

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