A storm hugging the mid-Atlantic and New England coasts will bring a period of accumulating wet snow to end the week.
For part of the region, the storm could track far enough to the west to bring a moderate to heavy snowfall for several hours.
Accumulating snow will extend from the Delmarva Peninsula through central and coastal New Jersey, the southeastern corner of Pennsylvania, southeastern New York state, Connecticut, Rhode Island, Massachusetts, southeastern Vermont, southern New Hampshire and coastal Maine.
%shareLinks-quote="It will be a close call in New York City and Philadelphia, but accumulating snow could come prior to or during the Friday morning rush." type="quote" author="Dan Pydynowski" authordesc="AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist" isquoteoftheday="false"%
"However, any accumulation on pavement in the city centers is unlikely with temperatures above freezing," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Dan Pydynowski said.
Given the recent warmth and rain across the East Coast to begin February, snow will need to fall at a heavy rate to accumulate on roadways. Most of the snowfall will accumulate on non-paved surfaces.
Where the rate of snow becomes very heavy, roads will turn from wet to slushy in a matter of minutes and lead to slippery travel during Friday morning.
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The heaviest snow is likely to fall across southeastern Massachusetts, Long Island, Rhode Island and central and southeastern Connecticut. Much of this area will receive a quick 3 to 6 inches of snow with locally higher amounts possible. This includes Islip, New York; Hartford, Connecticut; Worcester, Massachusetts; and Providence, Rhode Island.
A small amount of slushy snow will fall on southeastern Virginia.
"Snow will impact the morning rush hour around New York City and Philadelphia, as well as areas farther to the east, including Atlantic City, New Jersey; Boston, Brockton and Plymouth, Massachusetts; and Providence, Rhode Island," Pydynowski said.
In most areas, precipitation will begin as rain during Thursday night with temperatures well above freezing. As colder air seeps in, the rain will change to wet snow. The changeover will occur the soonest across the inland areas and the latest near the coast.
"Only a slight shift in the track of the storm could lead to more or less snow in some locations," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Matt Rinde said.
For example, a westward shift in the storm track by as little as 25 miles could push a few inches of wet snow and slushy streets into the swath from Philadelphia to New York City and a 6-inch snowfall to places such as Hartford, Connecticut, and Worcester, Massachusetts.
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Snow may reach Down East Maine and parts of Nova Scotia during Friday afternoon.
Clearing is forecast from southwest to northeast across the region spanning Friday midday, afternoon and evening.
Temperatures on Friday are expected to hover in the mid- to upper 30s F from southern New England to the lower 40s across the mid-Atlantic coast. Should any snow coat roads or sidewalks, the mild air will assist with storm cleanup operations during Friday afternoon and evening, since ice-melting compounds are effective at these temperatures.
%shareLinks-quote="The weekend will be dry with partial sunshine along the East Coast. Highs during the weekend will be mainly in the 40s." type="spreadWord"%
Story content contributed by AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Alex Sosnowski.