01:04 - Source: CNN
How freezing rain differs from sleet
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A strong storm that hit the eastern half of the country Thursday morning is expected to make its way into the Northeast, spreading heavy rain and flooding along the East Coast and snow and ice inland. Flooding may and icy conditions will continue across the South, where five people have been killed recently in weather-related incidents.

Timing

  • Wednesday night: Heavy rain moves through the Southeast while snow and ice impact portions of the Midwest into the Ohio Valley
  • Thursday morning: Rain moves into the mid-Atlantic, transitioning to snow and ice in the Appalachians
  • Thursday afternoon: Rain, snow, and ice move into the Northeast, with snow becoming heavy across the interior
  • Thursday night: Heavy snow moves into upstate New York and New England while a mix of rain and snow quickly transitions to rain closer to the coast
  • Friday: Snow lingers across northern New England into the afternoon


Nearly 25 million are under a flood or flash flood watch from Georgia to Virginia, where heavy rain on top of the already saturated soil could bring flooding.

Winter weather watches, warnings and advisories extend over a wide area from the Deep South, Mississippi and Ohio Valley, into the Northeast.

Snow is falling as far south as Arkansas, Mississippi, and Tennessee, and will spread north over a wide area, including St. Louis, Cincinnati, and Louisville, into the Appalachians and much of the Northeast.

Ice storm warnings are posted for parts of Indiana and Ohio, including Indianapolis and Dayton, where up to a quarter inch of ice is already causing widespread power outages.

Heavy ice accumulations are forecast over parts of West Virginia, eastern Virginia and western Maryland.

The heaviest snow will likely pile up from the central Appalachians into New England, where over 6” is expected. A heavy pocket of four to six inches is also possible around the St. Louis area, making it their biggest November snowfall in decades.

The northeast metros will escape the heavy snow, but will be left with a miserable mix of rain and snow, changing to all rain as the temperatures warm slightly into the mid and upper 30s.

Snow amounts in major metro areas

Precipitation will likely start as snow in major metro areas before changing over to rain. Here’s what to expect:

  • Boston: 1-3 inches starting as snow Thursday evening, changing to rain overnight, with rain lingering into Friday morning.
  • New York City: 1 inch of snow beginning late Thursday morning, becoming a wintery mix in the afternoon before changing to all rain. Heavier snow of 1-3 inches in New Jersey up the Hudson Valley.
  • Philadelphia: 1 inch or less of snow Thursday morning, mixing to rain and sleet around noon, and all rain late afternoon and Thursday night.
  • Washington: A half inch or less of wintery mix on Thursday, changing to rain with little accumulation.

Flooding continues in the South

The Northeast metros will escape the heavy snow, but will be left with a miserable mix of rain and snow, changing to all rain as the temperatures warm slightly into the mid and upper 30s.

Over 34 million are under flood or flash flood watches in the South, including cities like Atlanta, Charlotte, Raleigh, Norfolk and Richmond.

Icy conditions are responsible for the deaths of at least five people, according to state highway patrols.

Two people were killed in Desoto County, Mississippi, Wednesday afternoon after their tour bus crashed, said Sgt. Joseph Miller with the Mississippi Highway Patrol. The bus carrying 46 people was traveling from Huntsville, Alabama, to Tunica, Mississippi.

The remaining occupants were taken to area hospitals with a variety of injuries. The cause of the crash was weather related, Miller stated.

Arkansas Highway Patrol is reporting two separate incidents in which three people were killed after drivers lost control of cars on icy roads.

CNN Meteorologist Judson Jones contributed to this report