New England Blizzard!

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Mid-Tuesday morning observations reveal a large swath of intensifying snowfall across southeast New England. Radar indicates heaviest snow stretching from northern Rhode Island to interior southeast Massachusetts. Wind speed observations reveal maximum gusts in the 35-50 mph range near the coast (which will increase). A blizzard warning is in effect until 8 PM in east/southeast Massachusetts northward to the central Maine coast.

The HRRR model 18-hour snowfall forecast indicates 18-24 in. of snow across southeast Massachusetts, Boston and northeast Massachusetts stretching to the Portland, ME area. Coupled with high wind the heavy wet snow should cause widespread power outages today.

A coastal flood warning is in effect for 8AM to Noon. The northeast fetch required to drive excessive storm surge isn’t as strong as the early March storm. Nevertheless coastal flooding is likely this morning/midday.

The GFS indicates the storm peaks in strength late this afternoon due east of Nantucket. Central pressure is forecast to drop to 966 MB which is the lowest of the 3 consecutive storms observed in March. Fortunately, the storm center is far enough east to produce the devastating coastal flooding and hurricane force wind of the early March storm. However, the eastern displacement causes stronger cold inflow into the system producing the widespread heavy snow.

The snowfall amount expected along the coast may be a record for a March storm certainly during a daylight accumulation.

Fig. 1: The HRRR model 18-hour snowfall forecast for today’s Northeast storm indicates 18-24 in. along the Massachusetts and southern Maine coast.

Fig. 2: The GFS OP forecasts central pressure of today’s storm at 966 MB which is the lowest of the 3 Northeast Storms in March.