Snow to threaten slick travel along 1,000-mile corridor of US

Forecasters warn that the weather will be like night and day for millions of Americans living in the eastern United States from the start of the week to midweek.

Easterners woke up to a drenching rainstorm and a surge in unusually warm air to start the week, and AccuWeather meteorologists say the stage is set for localized flooding, especially where heavy snow remains on the ground, through Tuesday.

Soon after the rainstorm moves away, a much weaker storm will develop along a trailing cold front. The very weak storm will have just enough influence to slow the departure of moisture.

Much colder air will arrive on the back side of the system, causing rain to mix with and change to wet snow along an approximate 1,000-mile corridor from Tennessee to Maine spanning Tuesday night to Wednesday morning.

In some cases in the Northeast, the rain may end first, then snow may blossom a few hours later.

A period of snow is anticipated over interior cities such as Nashville, Tennessee; Charleston, West Virginia; Winchester, Virginia; Hagerstown, Maryland; Reading, Pennsylvania; Morristown, New Jersey; West Point, New York; Hartford, Connecticut; Worcester, Massachusetts; Keen, New Hampshire; and Bangor, Maine.

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Arctic blast brings snow, ice and bone-chilling temps to U.S.
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Arctic blast brings snow, ice and bone-chilling temps to U.S.
A woman walking the half mile from Chicago's Adler Planetarium to the Chicago Aquarium braces herself in the stiff wind and blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
A woman walking the half mile from the Chicago Aquarium to the Adler Planetarium braces in a stiff wind and blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
A woman walking the half mile from the Chicago Aquarium to the Adler Planetarium fights a stiff wind inverting her umbrella in the blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
A lone hiker navigates the 31st street beach bike trail in a stiff wind and blowing snow off Lake Michigan, Monday, Nov. 11, 2019, in Chicago. (AP Photo/Charles Rex Arbogast)
An American flag and a bouquet of flowers mark the grave of U.S. Marine Corps Cpl. Shelby B. Harris who served in the Persian Gulf conflict in Fort Logan National Cemetery in Sheridan, Colo. The annual memorial service at the cemetery for Veterans Day was moved inside to mark the holiday as light snow and cold temperatures enveloped the intermountain West. (AP Photo/David Zalubowski)
Jeremy Kohsman uses a leaf blower to remove the snow from his car in front of his home in Farmington Hills, Mich., Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (David Guralnick/Detroit News via AP)
Flint, Mich., residents traverse the snow as they walk into Flint City Hall to attend the swearing-in ceremony of Sheldon Neeley as the new mayor Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Jake May/The Flint Journal via AP)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: As snow continues to fall a commuter waits for a bus in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident clears snow from her sidewalk in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident clears snow from her steps in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A cyclist rides along a snow-covered street in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: Snow covers bicycles in the Bucktown neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident walks through snow with her child in the Wicker Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees Fahrenheit by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A jogger runs through a snow-covered Humboldt Park on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident plays with his dog as snow falls in Humboldt Park on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A cyclist navigates a snow-covered street in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A resident walks his dog through a snow-covered Humboldt Park on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A person cleans their car during a snow storm on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: A worker shovels snow from a sidewalk n the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: People navigate snow-covered sidewalks in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
CHICAGO, ILLINOIS - NOVEMBER 11: People navigate snow-covered sidewalks in the Humboldt Park neighborhood on November 11, 2019 in Chicago, Illinois. Forecasters are calling for three to six inches of snow to fall in the Chicago area by mid-day today and temperatures are expected to fall to around ten degrees by tomorrow. (Photo by Scott Olson/Getty Images)
Pedestrians in downtown Chicago bundle up from the wind and snow during the early morning rush hour as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Snow and rain make for a messy drive to work during the early morning rush hour as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Pedestrians in downtown Chicago bundle up from the wind and snow during the early morning rush hour as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
A maintenance worker spreads salt in the area around Cloud Gate during a morning rush hour snow storm as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area on Monday, Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
Maintenance workers clear the snow around Cloud Gate during a morning rush hour snow storm as a winter weather advisory is issued for the Chicago area Monday Nov. 11, 2019. (Antonio Perez/ Chicago Tribune/Tribune News Service via Getty Images)
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Along the I-95 corridor, the drive home Tuesday is likely to be wet, but the Wednesday morning commute is likely to be wintry. Snow may create slick roads from Washington, D.C., and Baltimore to Philadelphia, New York City, Boston and Portland, Maine. AccuWeather meteorologists warn that both types of weather conditions can cause their share of travel delays.

"Along the 1,000-mile swath, a general coating to 3 inches of snow is forecast. An AccuWeather Local StormMax™ of 5 inches is most likely over the Appalachians or hilly areas," AccuWeather Chief Broadcast Meteorologist Bernie Rayno said.

"Much less snow is expected to accumulate on the roads," Rayno added.

Exactly how much snow is able to accumulate on roads is dependent on how quickly these surfaces cool and the intensity of snowfall.

Most road surfaces will have had a chance to warm up through Tuesday, along with the surge of warmer air. The roads will tend to retain some warmth for a time even as the colder air and snow arrive.

Initially, some of the snow is likely to melt as it falls on warmer surfaces. But, elevated surfaces such as cars, lawns, decks, porches, bridges and overpasses are likely to become snow-covered much faster than city streets and main highways.

Where the snow manages to fall at a heavy rate, road surfaces can quickly cool and slushy conditions can develop in a matter of minutes.

Experts urge motorists, pedestrians and road crews to be prepared for a quick freeze-up that advances eastward during late Tuesday to Wednesday.

Arctic air is forecast to slash temperatures by 15-40 degrees Fahrenheit in about 24 hours.

Aside from lake-effect snow that ramps ups with the arrival of Arctic air, no significant wintry precipitation is forecast from northern New England to much of the Ohio Valley with this storm as dry air will race in.

Download the free AccuWeather app to check the forecast in your area. Keep checking back on AccuWeather.com and stay tuned to the AccuWeather Network on DirecTV, Frontier and Verizon Fios.

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