Northeastern Pennsylvanians who love a white Christmas got to enjoy their gift Tuesday morning after Mother Nature delivered a half-inch or so of snow Monday night – the first recordable Christmas snowfall in a decade.
But a post-Christmas storm expected to hit this afternoon will be far more severe and likely will create dangerous conditions.
The National Weather Service in Binghamton issued a winter storm warning for a combination of heavy snow, sleet and freezing rain, which is in effect from 2 p.m. today to 1 p.m. Thursday.
Snow will develop and quickly become heavy at times this afternoon. The snow will mix with and change to lighter sleet and freezing rain later this evening into the overnight hours Thursday morning. The precipitation could end as snow Thursday morning, the NWS said in the warning it issued Tuesday afternoon.
Travel will become dangerous during the height of the storm, especially Wednesday afternoon to early Thursday morning, the NWS said.
AccuWeather.com reports that the powerful winter storm takes aim on the East and central Great Lakes today into Thursday after slamming the southern Plains and Deep South on Tuesday.
The storm is dumping substantial snow, an icy mix, soaking rain, strong winds and severe weather on everything in its path.
According to the National Weather Service, snow is expected to begin falling locally after 3 p.m. today, and could be heavy at times, with an accumulation of 2 to 4 inches.
A mix of snow and sleet is expected between 10 p.m. tonight and 1 a.m. Thursday, possibly mixed with freezing rain. There could be an ice accumulation of one-tenth to three-tenths of an inch. An additional snow and sleet accumulation of 3 to 5 inches is possible, with a total accumulation of 5 to 10 inches of snow and ice.
More snow is likely Thursday, possibly mixed with sleet before 1 p.m., followed by scattered flurries in the evening.
Just because heavy snow is not falling, motorists should not take the wintry mix lightly, said Kristina Pydynowski, senior meteorologist for AccuWeather.com.
With sleet (ice pellets) involved, roads could still turn slick for a time, Pydynowski said.
For the complete weather forecast, go to Page 8A.