A large winter storm was producing snow over parts of North Dakota early Friday and was expected to bring snow and ice to the South today before turning toward the East Coast.
In Southern Vermont, wind chill warnings were issued for Friday night into today, with wind chill temperatures expected to drop to as low as 40 degrees below zero. Heavy snowfall is also likely from Sunday night through Monday, according to forecasters.
Details on which East Coast cities would see snow and how much remained unclear, but some airports and transportation departments were already bracing for potential travel issues.
David Roth, a senior forecaster with the National Weather Service, said Thursday evening that meteorologists expected the forecasts to evolve.
“There’s more uncertainty than usual,” Roth said. “When we’re dealing with the difference between rain and sleet, and freezing rain and snow, subtle changes make a big difference.”
In Southern Vermont, AccuWeather issued wind chill advisories and warnings for Friday night through noon on Saturday, with wind chill temperatures possibly dipping to between 25 and 40 below zero in Bennington County, and 15 to 25 below in Windham County. The NWS warned that dangerously cold wind chills can cause frostbite on exposed skin in as little as 10 minutes. People were advised to avoid outside activities if possible, and when outside, to wear appropriate clothing, a hat and gloves.
In addition, AccuWeather is forecasting a snowstorm for Southern Vermont starting late Sunday night and continuing through Monday. Snowfall amounts range from 4 to 6 inches in Bennington, to 6 to 10 inches in Brattleboro.
By early Friday, snow was falling across parts of central and eastern North Dakota, according to the Weather Service in Bismarck.
On Saturday, the storm system is expected to continue moving southeast toward upstate South Carolina, northeast Georgia and western North Carolina. Dozens of cities in the region will be under a winter storm watch from Saturday evening through Monday morning. The storm system will then head northeast toward the East Coast, Roth said.
Wintry weather will be possible in several cities, including Washington, Philadelphia and New York City, but details on how much or what kind of precipitation were unclear.
“We’d be in a transition zone where it might start as snow, then go to rain, then go back to snow,” Roth said.