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New Orleans, LA  70116      3/5/2015
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Storm Central
Ohio Valley to Mid-Atlantic Brace For Big Snow
UPDATED 8:15 PM EST, March 4, 2015
UPDATED By WeatherBug Meteorologists, Andrew Rosenthal and James West
Despite the fact that the calendar reads March, Old Man Winter has few more tricks up its sleeve. A major storm is poised to bring nearly a foot of snow from the Mid-South and Ohio Valley to the Mid-Atlantic.
The wintry weather is the result of an elongated front stretching from northern Texas all of the way into the Mid-Atlantic this evening. This front is the dividing line between arctic air now over the Midwest and very warm, almost spring-like air across the South and Southeast. A developing low pressure system is located over the Mid-South and Tennessee Valley.
The impacts of this combination are being felt in two ways: A wave of moisture is marching along the front from northern Texas all of the way into the Mid-Atlantic and the unseasonably strong push of Arctic air will race southward behind the front into the central Plains and Mississippi Valley.
Heavy rain is falling from Arkansas and the Tennessee Valley northeast into West Virginia and extreme northern Virginia, with some areas of Kentucky and the West Virginia likely picking up 2 to 4 inches of rain. Flooding has been reported from the heavy rain and the resulting snow melt.
However, as the front slinks south and east through tonight, this rain will quickly mix with and change to snow. It has already done so in parts of lower Ohio Valley.
Winter Storm Warnings stretch from northeastern Texas to central New Jersey, including Little Rock, Ark., Memphis, Tenn., Louisville, Ky., Pittsburgh and Philadelphia, Pa., New York City, and Washington, D.C. Winter Weather Advisories ring the northern and southern edges of the warnings, including Oklahoma City, and Columbus, Ohio.
Four to 8 inches of snow will be found across the Ozarks of Missouri and Arkansas, and along the Ohio River from southern Illinois and Kentucky to southern Ohio and western West Virginia including Cape Girardeau, Mo., and Paducah and Louisville, Ky. The good news is that the storm will have a sharp cut-off on its northern fringe, with cities along the Interstate 70 corridor such as St. Louis, Indianapolis and Dayton, Ohio, likely to see just a light accumulation. Areas a bit to the south won`t be quite as lucky, with 2 to 4 inches of snow as well as a wintry mix of sleet and freezing rain.
The front will continue its advancement into the Mid-Atlantic tonight, with heavy snow developing after Midnight across the Philadelphia, Baltimore and Washington metro areas, as well as the Delmarva Peninsula and southern New Jersey. Here, 6 to 10 inches of snow is expected to fall through Thursday evening. A few spots could even pick up as much as a foot of snow. Areas along the northern edge of the storm along the Interstate 76 corridor from Ohio to Philadelphia area, including the great Pittsburgh area will see 4 to 8 inches of snow.
In the wake of this storm, another dose of dangerous cold will spread southward across the northern tier. Temperatures will likely drop into the single digits on Thursday night under clear skies, with wind chills of minus-10 to minus-15.
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