A major winter storm with heavy snow, high winds and bitter cold temperatures entered our area this morning and it could drop more than 1 foot of snow in some areas. Before it arrived it already caused school closures and travel delays.
The storm is expected to drop 9 to 16 inches in Philadelphia and along the I-95 Corridor. One foot or more is also possible in the Lehigh Valley, the Jersey Shore and parts of Delaware, according to the NBC10 First Alert Weather Team.
The National Weather Service issued a Winter Storm Warning starting at 10 a.m. Tuesday through early Wednesday morning for the entire region outside of the Poconos where a Winter Storm Advisory is instead in place.
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"It's a major snow storm," said NBC10 First Alert Weather Chief Meteorologist Glenn Schwartz. "Many areas are expected to get over 6 inches, plus wind, plus cold. The worst of this storm will be late Tuesday and Tuesday night."
Temperatures and the wind chill dropped Tuesday morning into the low 20s.
As expected, snowfall began from the west to east and by 9:30 a.m. snow was falling on Center City Philadelphia. The snowfall should expand through the region by noon.
The snow should get heavier throughout the day leading to a messy evening rush.
9 a.m. to 12 p.m. – snow falls, 22 degrees
12 p.m. to 3 p.m. – snow gets heavier, 22 degrees
3 p.m. to midnight - heavy snow, wind, 16 degrees
Midnight to 8 a.m. - snow tapers off, frigid, 8 degrees, wind chill -10 degrees
Dozens of schools in our area including Philadelphia parochial schools closed in preparation for the snow. Philadelphia Public Schools and other districts scheduled early dismissals -- Philly schools will let out at 12:30 p.m.
|Philadelphia, I-95 Corridor, ||9 to 16 inches|
|Poconos||3 to 8 inches|
|Lehigh Valley, Berks County, far north & west suburbs||7 to 14 inches|
|Coastal Delaware, South Jersey||6 to 12 inches|
The Weather Service warned of heavy winds and hazardous driving conditions throughout the day as the storm moves up the East Coast.
There were also more than 100 flights delayed or canceled at Philadelphia International Airport.
The snow is just the beginning of the winter blast as temps should remain below the freezing mark for the rest of the week as another polar vortex blasts the region with windy, bitter cold.
While the snow will move out Wednesday, the bitter cold will remain with morning temperatures in the single digits. Wind chills in Philadelphia should be below zero the chills could dip to -20 to -25 in the Poconos. The high will only be in the teens.
Bitter cold with lows in the single digits and highs in the 20s should continue on Thursday and Friday and there's even the chance of some light snow on Thursday.
By the weekend, conditions won't be as frigid and temperatures will rise into the 30s.