Near Blizzard Conditions Possible for Weekend Storm

Schwartz: All of the potential for a major snowstorm

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    NEWSLETTERS

    TK
    Aleta L. Wojculewski

    If you're planning to travel or finish up the rest of your Christmas shopping Saturday, you may want to rethink your plans.

    That's because a major winter storm is set to come roaring into the area this weekend, bringing with it near blizzard conditions and heavy snow.

    "We're talking about very high accumulations, especially for December," NBC Philadelphia chief meteorologist Glenn "Hurricane" Schwartz said.

    Forecast: Snow Totals Could Increase

    [PHI] Forecast: Snow Totals Could Increase
    Preliminary snow predictions could climb even higher if the storm moves closer to our area or slows.

    The National Weather Service expanded a Winter Storm Watch notice from just the city and south to our entire area -- including the Lehigh Valley. The watch will begin Friday evening and last until late Saturday night.

    Snow could begin to fall as early as Saturday morning and last until Sunday afternoon. Here's a timeline:

    Forecast: Snow Totals Could Increase

    [PHI] Forecast: Snow Totals Could Increase
    Preliminary snow predictions could climb even higher if the storm moves closer to our area or slows.

    TIME

    CONDITIONS

    Saturday 6 a.m. Snow starts South
    Saturday 9 a.m. Snow spreads North
    Saturday Noon Heavier snow begins to fall
    Saturday 6 p.m. Heavy snowfall peaks South and East
    Sunday 6 a.m. Snow ends across the area


    Updated computer forecasting models increase the potential for high snow accumulations for Philadelphia, South Jersey and Delaware. Coastal areas and Northern and Western areas such as Allentown, Reading and Lancaster have a medium chance of seeing major totals.

    Here is a preliminary prediction of snow accumulations:

    LOCATION

    EXPECTED ACCUMULATION

    Parts of South Jersey and Southern & Central Delaware 10-20 inches
    Philadelphia, Wilmington, Del., and Trenton, N.J. 6-10 inches
    Northern and Western Suburbs 3-6 inches


    There is still a possiblity that the totals could continue to climb as the storm moves closer to the area, Schwartz said.

    Sign up for weather and breaking news email alerts and check out the latest track of the storm at the NBCPhiladelphia.com Weather Center.