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    I-95 Blizzard from New Jersey to Maine

    By By Alex Sosnowski, Expert Senior Meteorologist
    December 28, 2010, 1:41:15 AM EST

    A northward-moving strengthening storm will unleash a paralyzing blizzard along a vast swath of the I-95 Northeast corridor into Monday.

    This is the same storm that buried parts of the West under yards of snow and mud, along with feet of rain in some locations last week.

    The storm is no joke. Major highways could be shut down in the region. Some major airports could stop most flights, creating a nightmare for those souls heading home after the Christmas holiday from eastern North Carolina to Maine.

    Roads are already a mess in North Carolina and southeastern Virginia, and will quickly become snow covered and slippery from south to north in the remainder of the I-95 Northeast.


    Blizzard in the Making

    Blizzard conditions will first develop in the zone from Atlantic City, N.J. to near Philadelphia this afternoon and will last for several hours into the evening.

    New York City to Providence, R.I., Boston and Portland, Maine will get the worst of the blizzard tonight into Monday and are in for a longer-duration event compared to, say, Philadelphia. More than a foot of snow could bury cities and towns in this zone through tonight.

    Snow was breaking out well in advance of the storm over portions of New England Sunday midday.


    Screaming winds gusting past 40 mph for a multiple-hour stretch will create white-out conditions at the height of the storm from New Jersey and Long Island all the way to Maine, New Brunswick and eastern Quebec.

    Blowing and drifting snow will create an uphill battle for crews working keep the streets clear during the height of the storm and in its wake for a time.

    Meteorologists refer to this type of a storm as a "bomb," due to crashing atmospheric pressure and resultant increasing winds. A dynamic storm of this caliber can bring thunder and lightning with the snow in coastal areas!

    Don't Get Stranded

    People will get stuck on highways and at airports in this storm.

    Travel in parts of the coastal mid-Atlantic and much New England will become difficult to impossible as the storm slides northward, intensifying into Monday.

    With a number of the nation's busy airport hubs affected by the storm, delays, cancellations and corresponding travel headaches could radiate across the nation as the holiday weekend wraps up.

    Airlines have canceled hundreds of flights ahead of the storm. Ripple effects from the storm may impact other airports outside of the storm area.

    Areas on the Fringe of the Blizzard

    Much less snow and storm intensity are in store for the Baltimore-Washington, Reading, Scranton, Binghamton areas, but conditions will worsen substantially as you head east of these locations. Correspondingly, little snow or flurries will fall west of this corridor.

    However, as the storm heads northward, heavy snow and gusty winds will bend westward into the Hudson Valley of New York. It appears Albany will get their blizzard after all, as will western Massachusetts and much of Vermont and New Hampshire.

    As with many nor'easters, this storm will also have its share of coastal flooding problems and power outages due to strong winds. The worst of these conditions are likely over eastern New England and the Maritimes.

    Meteorologists Katie Storbeck and Kristina Pydynowski contributed extensively to the content of this story.

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