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Snowstorm Prompts Snow Emergencies, Cancellations

03:25PM / Friday, January 18, 2019
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This delightful paragraph arrived Saturday morning from the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency:

"The Massachusetts Department of Transportation (MassDOT) is advising the public that weather forecasters are expecting a winter storm to impact travel across the Commonwealth beginning Saturday evening and continuing throughout Sunday. Heavy wet snow is expected to begin falling on Saturday evening, transition to freezing rain and sleet in some areas on Sunday, and be followed by a flash freeze on Sunday afternoon and evening. The public is advised to minimize travel if possible, make smart decisions if driving, and be mindful of potentially hazardous travel conditions due to the mixture in various geographic locations of rain, ice, snow and sleet."

Lots of new maps showed up on Friday to give everyone some idea of the snowpocalypse headed our way. Check out Greylock Snow Day's entertaining critique of all these colorful weather maps. 
 
Also, we're getting lots of notices of local snow emergencies. We're not going to list them all because you should know by now that if you leave your car parked on the street during a snowstorm, it's likely to get towed. 
 
Cancellations, postponements: 
  • Boys & Girls Club of the Berkshires will be closed, all activities canceled, for Sunday, Jan. 20.
  • Greylock Together meeting for Sunday is canceled.
  • Blackinton Union Church's 10 a.m. service Sunday is canceled.
  • Williams College Museum of Art is closed on Sunday.
  • Berkshire Museum closed Sunday.
  • Norman Rockwell Museum closed Sunday.
 
The National Weather Service on Friday posted a winter storm warning from Saturday at 4 p.m. through Sunday at 4 p.m. with total snow accumulations of 12 to 20 inches. Travel could be "very difficult to impossible" (!) because of heavy snow. Sunday will worsen with wind gusts of up to 30 mph, blowing and drifting snow and wind-chills below zero. 
 
Pittsfield, at the moment, is projected to get anywhere from 13 inches to 21 inches of snow; Great Barrington 10 to 18; and Bennington, Vt., 15 to 21. Temperatures will be barely into the 20s over the weekend before taking a deep dip.
 
A preview of the weekend storm will blow through the Berkshires on Thursday night, dropping anywhere from a half-inch to 2 inches of snow overnight.
 
Accuweather says it's a "one-two punch of snow and cold" this weekend as multiple weather systems roll over the Northeast. The blizzard on Saturday could cause severe blowing and drifting, and whiteouts as snowfall rates could reach 2-3 inches an hour in some locations. 
 
The northwest corner of the state is in the zone for the most accumulation, up to 24 inches according to Accuweather, with some parts of South County in line for only a foot or so. Most of central and Eastern New York, Massachusetts and Southern Vermont are in the zone for the heaviest amount of snow. 
 
This will cause treacherous travel conditions, flight delays and flash freezes, particularly on the eastern end of the state.
 
The major storm is coming in over a three-day holiday weekend so schools and other public offices will be closed, as well as businesses observing the holiday.
 
Right now we're rating the Thursday-Friday snow as a warm cup of cocoa ☕; the weekend, that's a full alert loaf of bread, a gallon of milk and a dozen eggs! 🍞🥛🥚
 
We'll be running updates to this article as needed through the weekend.

Tags: severe weather,   snowstorm,   

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