Colder air, gusty winds to feel like a 'slap in the face' in the Northeast this weekend

By Alex Sosnowski, AccuWeather senior meteorologist
March 17, 2019, 3:26:57 PM EDT

Residents of the northeastern United States are getting a reminder that winter is still in session with colder and blustery conditions this weekend and below-average temperatures forecast for several days this week.

While far from the coldest conditions experienced over the winter, the colder air plunging in will sting a bit due to gusty winds.

Saturday's winds will be gone by Sunday, but a brisk day is still expected to close out the weekend.

When compared to high temperatures in the 50s, 60s and 70s F from Friday, Sunday will bring another day of AccuWeather RealFeel® Temperatures being held 20 to 40 degrees lower.

"People with outdoor events that last for a few hours, such as St. Patrick's Day parades, will need to dress warmly," according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Faith Eherts.

"The dramatic change will feel like a slap in the face this weekend," according to AccuWeather Vice President of Content and Meteorologist Trish Mikita.

Sunday RF March 16

The March sun will provide some warmth during the midday and afternoon hours, but it will get chilly quickly during the evening. The morning hours will be quite cold as well.

Motorists and pedestrians are reminded that runoff from recent rain and melting snow will freeze at night. Property owners and road crews should keep an eye out for icy spots and make them safe for vehicle and foot traffic.

Snow showers and localized heavier squalls can also create slippery spots and reduced visibility across the interior. This wintry weather should gradually diminish during Sunday morning.

A weak storm is forecast to travel from the Midwest through parts of West Virginia, Virginia, Maryland, Delaware, southern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey from Sunday night to Monday.

NE regional 3/17

"The storm is expected to deliver a narrow swath of a slippery coating to an inch or two of snow along the Interstate 80 corridor from south of Chicago to north of Indianapolis Saturday night into Sunday morning," according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski.

Any light accumulations as the snow streaks into Ohio during the day on Sunday should be limited to grassy and elevated surfaces.

"After nightfall, the risk for snow and slick spots can return to the central Appalachians," Pydynowski added.

NE wintry 3/17

A bit of snow, which may be mixed with rain in some areas, can streak across the Washington, D.C., and Baltimore areas and eastward to Delaware later Sunday night into Monday. Little, if any of the snow is expected to accumulate.

The risk for a major storm with heavy rain, snow and a wintry mix through the coming week seems very unlikely at this time, even though there have been some giant snowstorms in the past during March, such as the Storm of the Century from 1993.

Less wind is in store for the region from Monday to Tuesday, so it may feel a little better when compared to this weekend. However, temperatures will lag behind average levels for this time of the year.

Early morning temperatures most days early this week will range from the single digits over northern New England to near freezing in eastern Virginia.

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At midweek, a southerly breeze should allow temperatures to recover to mild levels just in time for the first official day of spring. Spring arrives on Wednesday, March 20, at 5:58 p.m. EDT.

However, it appears that another wave of cold air is likely to drop southeastward from Canada and across the northeastern U.S. for the latter part of the week.

this week pattern 3/17

There are different scenarios as to how much bite that chilly air will have late in the week. At the very least, winds will kick up and add a cold feel once again on Thursday to Friday.

Temperatures are likely to trend to average or below average for Thursday and Friday as time draws nearer.

Download the free AccuWeather app to see the temperature forecast for your area.

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