PHILADELPHIA (WTXF) - A Winter Storm Warning will be in effect from Thursday morning until 4 p.m. for most of our area. FOX 29's Sue Serio reported the upgrade on the air as it happened at 4 a.m. The warning will begin at various times, depending on where you are, but the start time is 4 a.m. in Philadelphia.
A Winter Weather Advisory will be in effect for the rest of our area in Cumberland, Atlantic and Cape May counties in New Jersey and Kent County in Delaware, until 4 p.m. as well.
But Wednesday morning, you may even call it warm. In Philadelphia, weren’t too far from a record high temperature. It was 60 degrees at 6 a.m., but it’s gradually getting cooler. That’s not the case to the north where Allentown was only in the 30s at the same time.
Also Wednesday morning, there is nothing on the radar. Any overnight showers are gone, and you may even see some sun.
The big change in temperature will come after midnight Thursday. (Click the Warning and Advisory map to track everything, from Wednesday morning to Thursday night, almost hour by hour, including snowfall amounts.)
Don’t let the recent warmth and mild temperatures fool you. The ground is warm, but significant snowfall will be accumulating quickly. Low pressure will move up the coast, drawing in upper air cold, and giving the snow a chance to pile up.
Thursday's high will only be 34 degrees with a low of 32, which could bring a brief stint of sleet and freezing rain in the earlier portions of this system. Friday will remain chilly with a high of 32 and lows in the 20s.
The weekend will warm up quick with highs in the 40s and 50s melting some of this snow away.
The snow will start 1-3 a.m. The heaviest will be 5-8 a.m., unfortunately during the morning rush hour. Be extra careful if you have to go out.
By 10 a.m., there should already be a few inches on the ground in Philadelphia. It’ll be tapering off at about noon, and should be over by 2-3 p.m.
As for how much, models show Philadelphia and the I-95 corridor should get 4-6 inches of snow.
The north and west will get more: 6-9 inches. And the shore, south of Atlantic City, should get 1-3 inches.
But it won’t just be the cold and the snow. Factor in wind gusts at least of at least 20 mph -– and higher south of Philadelphia -– that will blow the snow around and put power lines in jeopardy.
If you’re south of Philadelphia -– in an advisory rather than warning area -- expect heavy rain at first. Then, the cold air will continue to move southward and change over to snow, so you won’t get as much.
The cold will remain Friday and we shouldn’t get above freezing, so don’t expect much melting.
Then, we’ll have a warmer weekend with the upper 40s on Saturday and the upper 50s on Sunday.