Arctic blast to hit Philly region; snow possible Friday night

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Remember the cold air, we've been telling you was on the way all week? Well if you haven't stepped outside yet, it's here! However, the cold may not be the only wintry weather we see this weekend.

Yes. We are talking about snow.

The arctic front made its way into the western parts of the area Wednesday night.

WIND CHILLS

The coldest air of the season will be migrating toward the East over the next 24 hours. So you have those strong arctic winds out of the northwest that will be gusting to 40, 45 miles an hour Thursday afternoon and night.

That will bring wind chills down into the single digits, and some spots could go below zero. Some will wake up to single digit wind chills on Thursday.

Just about everyone will be feeling the single digit wind chills by the time we get to Friday morning, as the polar vortex making its way across Canada gets as close as New England.  

SNOW

By Friday night, we are looking at the possibility of snow moving in after midnight, and the Lehigh Valley could see an accumulation of 2,3, maybe even 4-inches of snow, before it changes over to rain Saturday.

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Our Northern and Western Suburbs could see 1-2 inches before that rainy changeover Saturday. Philadelphia could see a light coating before turning back into rain.

TEMPERATURES

Temperatures on Thursday and Friday will only reach the mid-20s. Plus, both days will be windy. In fact, expect wind gusts of 40-45mph.

Then, Friday morning will be the coldest, with wind chills starting out in the single digits. Those wind chills will hardly break 20 all day.

CODE BLUE

Philadelphia’s Office of Homeless Services has declared a weeklong Code Blue -- from 6pm Wednesday until 6am next Wednesday, Dec. 21 -- to prevent weather-related deaths among the homeless. The city’s homeless outreach teams increase staffing and foot patrols, and give homeless people access to shelter 24 hours a day.

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Also, during a Code Blue, Philadelphia police are authorized to transport homeless people to a shelter. If you see a person living on the street, they ask you to call Homeless Outreach at 215-232-1984 to report it.

Officials discourage providing the homeless with items such as sleeping bags, tents, mattresses and food, so they can stay in the extreme cold rather than a shelter for even more prolonged periods.

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The Bucks County Emergency Management Agency and Health Department issued a "Code Blue" declaration. It’ll last from 7pm Wednesday until 7am Saturday. The December on-call churches -- Emmaus Rod Lutheran Church in Levittown, Neshaminy Warwick Presbyterian Church and Quakertown Masonic Lodge -- plan to activate their emergency shelters. Authorities are asking people to check on their elderly neighbors and take caution with pets, keeping them indoors.

Atlantic city also issued a Code Blue has been from 8pm Wednesday to 8pm on Friday, 12/16. The Rescue Mission is open. The ACPD will provide rides if available.

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