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NWS: As low tracks farther north and west, East End will escape worst impacts of powerful late winter storm

File photo: Brian Wolfe

A powerful coastal storm is expected to dump eight to 14 inches of snow across eastern Long Island and one to two feet of snow in the NYC metro region late tonight and through the day tomorrow.

Heavy snow with possible blizzard conditions are forecast for the East End Tuesday morning, the weather service said. Snow is expected to mix with or change to sleet and rain late tomorrow morning into the afternoon, according to the latest National Weather Service Forecast. Northeast wins of 30 to 40 mph with gusts up to 60 mph are expected tomorrow.

A winter storm warning is in effect for the East End from midnight tonight until midnight tomorrow.

The coastal low is now forecast to track closer to the coast than was originally forecast, according to the weather service. It is also expected to track much farther north up the DelMarVa coast as it rapidly intensifies tomorrow morning, eventually veering northeast and tracking close to Montauk Point, according to the online forecast discussion posted by the National Weather Service in New York.

“Operational models have exhibited a significant north and westward shift of the low’s track. This a good 50-plus mile north and west shift of the model guidance from 24 hours ago,” the forecast discussion said. The models also depict a low that’s quite a bit stronger low than was forecast yesterday.

“The closer-to-the coast track points to heavy precipitation for the entire area, but now spells a high likelihood for mixing or changeover to sleet and/or rain across eastern Long Island and southern Connecticut during the morning into afternoon,” the NWS said. “If westward trend continues a bit more, mixing/changeover could occur into much of western Long Island.” If the western shift continues, snowfall across south and eastern coastal areas may be reduced further.

Before any changeover occurs six or more inches of snow are still likely across much of eastern Long Island, with intense snow banding in the morning, when snowfall rates are expected to be two to four inches per hour.

“With high changeover likelihood and a wetter snow across eastern Long Island and southern Connecticut, [NWS forecasters] have converted the blizzard watch to a winter storm warning,” the forecast discussion explained.

Heavy snow and strongest winds should begin to wind down from southwest to northeast late tomorrow afternoon/evening, as the low pressure pulls east of New England. Snow showers and gusty northwest winds could linger through Wednesday.

A coastal flood advisory is also in effect Tuesday from 11 a.m. to 4 p.m. Minor to locally moderate flooding is expected on waterfront and shoreline roads as tides rise 2.5 to 3.5 feet above normal, according to the National Weather Service.

Denise Civiletti
Denise is a veteran local reporter and editor, an attorney and former Riverhead Town councilwoman. Her work has been recognized with numerous awards, including a “writer of the year” award from the N.Y. Press Association in 2015. She is a founder, owner and co-publisher of this website.