Looming Blizzard Could Rank Near Top 10 To Hit Eastern US


The blizzard menacing the Eastern United States could rank near the top 10 to ever hit the region, according to the National Weather Service.

Snowfall as heavy as 1 to 3 inches an hour could continue for 24 hours or more in the area, said meteorologist Paul Kocin with the service’s Weather Prediction Center, the AP reports. That puts estimates at more than 2 feet for Washington, a foot to 18 inches for Philadelphia and 8 inches to a foot in New York.

The AP reports that Kocin compared the storm it to “Snowmageddon,” the first of two storms that “wiped out” Washington in 2010 and dumped up to 30 inches of snow in places, but he said the weekend timing and days of warning could help limit deaths and damage.

The snowfall, expected to continue from late Friday into Sunday, could easily cause more than $1 billion in damage and paralyze the Eastern third of the nation, weather service director Louis Uccellini said.

“It does have the potential to be an extremely dangerous storm that can affect more than 50 million people,” Uccellini said at the Weather Prediction Center in College Park, Maryland.

The director said all the ingredients have come together to create a blizzard with brutally high winds, dangerous inland flooding, white-out conditions and even the possibility of thunder snow.

An in related news:

The AP reports that the U.S. Capitol Police said sledding on Capitol Hill — which only recently became legal after an act of Congress — would be welcome for the first time in decades, as long as conditions are safe.

{Andy Heller-Matzav.com Newscenter}