Winter Storm Pax is heading north, bringing heavy, wet snow, rain, ice and wind.
The National Weather Service has issued a Winter Weather Advisory for Suffolk, MA, in effect from 7 a.m. tomorrow to 7 a.m. Friday morning. Impacted areas include much of Eastern Massachusetts, including Briston and Plymouth counties.
Snow will start to fall between 7 a.m. and 9 a.m. Thursday morning, hampering commutes. Snow, heavy at times, will change to rain tomorrow afternoon. Boston can expect accumulations between 3 to 5 inches.
Northeasterly winds will gust upwards of 25 mph to 40 mph.
[UPDATE: Wednesday, Feb. 12, 1:45 p.m.]
The south is already being covered in a layer of ice, but Boston is holding strong without a flake in the air. Although everything might look safe for Bostonians right now, we are still expecting to receive a significant dose of snow. The city is predicted to be covered with three to six inches of snow, and western Massachusetts could see six inches to a foot. Areas near the Cape will get away with less snow accumulation, with estimates between one and three inches.
The south will be getting the bulk of things, as Pax has already started to hit cities like Atlanta and smaller cities in South Carolina especially hard. The storm will show it’s snowy strength up and down the east coast, impacting more than 83 million people.
While the New England area might be more apt to coping with such a storm, the less prepared south will again find itself struggling to fight another wintry mix of weather. Last week, Winter Storm Nika caused massive gridlocks throughout the southern states, trapping people on the roads for hours on end.
Knightsville, SC has already seen a half inch of freezing rain, with more on the way. Pax is bringing everything from sleet to snow, and it’s keeping most people indoors for the rest of the day.
On Wednesday, Boston is looking at clear skies and brisk temperatures throughout the morning and afternoon, until sunset. Clouds will start to move in during the later portion of the evening commute, while temperatures hold tight in the low 20’s.
It looks like clouds and chilly temps will persist throughout the overnight hours, into Thursday morning. That’s when things will start to get pretty, prettyyyy, prettyy interesting, around 6 a.m..
Thursday morning’s commute isn’t looking too promising, with the snow set to fall at its heaviest around 9 a.m., according to weather.com‘s projections. However, Pax doesn’t look like it will yield particularly impressive snow accumulation totals in Boston or Cape Cod. Early projections are calling for around 3 to 5 inches along coastal communities, with snow mixing with, then completely changing over to rain by Thursday evening, as temperatures reach the upper 30s.
Western Massachusetts, it seems, will see mostly snow once Pax arrives tomorrow. Initial inland projections call for 8 to 12 inches of wet snow.
Here’s David Epstein’s latest visual:
BostInno will be updating this post all day, so remember to check back for the latest news on Winter Storm Pax.
[UPDATE: Tuesday, Feb. 11, 1:45 p.m.]
All signs point towards Winter Storm Pax, colliding dead-on with Boston Thursday morning. David Epstein, in his most recent Boston.com writings, says Thursday will be troublesome; snow will be heavy at times inland, while the white flakes will turn to rain along the coast as the day progresses.
(And by the way, an El Nino event will probably happen this year. Carry on.)
Still, the South seems to be getting the worst of Pax.
One meteorologist, based in Fort Worth, Texas, told the AP that forecasters “were talking about an ice storm that happens only once every 10 to 20 years.”
But, for now, let’s focus on Greater Boston.
“I would categorize this as a strong storm,” writes Epstein, “it’s not going to be a blockbuster.”
The rain-to-snow changeover will depend on the storm’s track and varying temperatures.
Currently, it looks like Boston is in for a heavy mix of snow and rain, keeping accumulations under half-a-foot.
Boston is in for more winter mess, yes. But again, the South is getting the brunt of Pax’s force.
Earlier, the AP reported that President Barack Obama declared an emergency in Georgia, ordering response efforts from federal and local agencies.
In areas of Atlanta up to central South Carolina, snow and ice could accumulate up to three-quarters of an inch, with winds gusting up to 30 mph.
[Monday, Feb. 10]
Boston.com weather guru David Epstein reports, the region’s next batch of wintery goodness is set to arrive early Thursday, “and if the timing holds,” could wreak havoc with that morning’s commute. The track of the storm isn’t clear, but, Epstein says, Thursday travel plans should be adjusted appropriately, should the storm hit Greater Boston.
The storm’s projected path (see: above), Epstein says, makes it hard to predict whether the area will get snow, rain or a combination of both. Copious amounts of either are possible.
Residing to the left of the storm’s path could mean a heavy dose of rain, while areas to the right could be buried under heavy, wet snow.
The storm is already causing problems down South, but as Weather.com reports, this batch of nasty weather could make it’s way up the East Coast later this week. It’s still early, but it already has a name: Winter Storm Pax.
Winter Storm Pax’s trajectory:
Even though specific snow and/or rainfall totals aren’t known, yet, it’s never too early to prepare. Given the possibility of a hectic Thursday morning commute, check out these winter driving tips. In the event that the forecast gets nastier, feel free to study-up on these winter storm preparation techniques.
Images via Boston.com, weather.com