A storm will form along a new push of cold air and deposit snow on much of Virginia, North Carolina, Maryland and Delaware through Wednesday evening.
“The snowfall will be parented by a storm responsible for spreading accumulating snow and slippery travel over the Midwest on Monday and the Appalachians on Tuesday,” according to AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Kristina Pydynowski.
Enough snow will fall to coat roads and lead to airline delays in the region. Plunging temperatures in the storm’s wake will lead to icy surfaces.
A state of emergency was declared in North Carolina on Tuesday ahead of the arrival of the disruptive snow.
“A surge of mild air ahead of the storm allowed air temperatures to rise well above freezing in most areas during the day Tuesday,” Pydynowski said. “However, as cold air invades the region and the storm strengthens near the coast, any rain or mixed precipitation near the coast will change to snow and wet roads to start will likely become slippery from west to east from Tuesday night to Wednesday.”
In the swath from the West Virginia mountains, southeastward to eastern North Carolina, a general 1-3 inches of snow is forecast, with locally higher amounts. This includes the cities of Roanoke, Charlottesville and Richmond, Virginia, and Raleigh, Durham, Winston-Salem, Fayetteville and Elizabeth City, North Carolina.
A general 1-3 inches of snow is likely in Charlotte, North Carolina, with locally higher amounts possible, especially north of the city.
In South Carolina, areas that border North Carolina may receive a few inches of snow. Slippery spots are possible as far to the south as the South Carolina coast and south-central Georgia.
Snow will coat the mountains of northern Georgia, with a coating to an inch snowfall is anticipated for downtown Atlanta. Some bridges and overpasses in the city may get slippery.
The greatest risk will be the potential for a quick freeze-up of wet and slushy areas toward the tail end of the storm.
Farther north, cities such as Washington, D.C., Baltimore and Dover, Delaware, are forecast to pick up a coating to an inch of snow with just enough to make roads slippery.
Depending on how quickly the storm strengthens upon reaching the Atlantic Ocean, moderate to heavy snow may develop in eastern North Carolina, southeastern Virginia and in part of the Delmarva Peninsula.
Regardless, motorists should be prepared for changing conditions on U.S. Routes 11 and 13, as well as Interstate 40, I-64, I-68, I-70 I-77, I-85 and I-95. Roads that start off wet may soon become slushy and snow-covered.
There is the potential for enough snow to cause disruptions to daily activities, such as school delays and closings in part of the South on Wednesday.
A second storm is forecast to deposit 4-8 inches of snow on New England during through Wednesday.
However, while there will be icy patches associated with melting and refreezing during the latter part of the week, a return of mild weather this weekend should erase the existing snowcover from the storm.