NWS: Delaware likely to be hit hard by wind and snow

Charlie Megginson Government, Headlines

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The entirety of Delaware is under a winter storm watch and the National Weather Service is warning of the possibility of significant snowfall Friday into Saturday.

The main threats are anticipated to include high winds which may lead to downed trees and power lines, extreme cold, snow, and minor coastal flooding.

A gale warning is also in effect for coastal areas and the Delaware Bay.

According to a report from NWS Mount Holly, significant snow accumulations of 6 inches or more are probable Friday night through Saturday afternoon. Strong winds may result in blowing and drifting snow and very low visibility. Dangerous travel is probable. Accumulating snow may be heavy enough to result in hazardous travel along the I-95 corridor including Wilmington, Philadelphia,
Trenton, and the suburbs.

Minor coastal flooding is possible along the Atlantic coast of Delaware and along the Delaware Bay Saturday morning.

Northeast to north winds 20 to 25 mph with gusts 40 to 50 mph are possible, which may result in some tree damage and power outages. Low wind chills on Saturday night will bring potential for rapid onset of frostbite on exposed skin in New Jersey and Delaware, as well as the southern Poconos and far northwest New Jersey Friday night through Saturday night.

Gale force wind gusts along with dangerous seas are probable in Atlantic coastal waters including the Delaware Bay Friday night through Saturday night.

Storm summary:

According to the National Weather Service station at Mount Holly, a winter storm is forecast to affect much of the region Friday night and Saturday. Confidence in the storm total snow forecast is very low, owing to continued large uncertainty with the track of the associated surface low. There remains potential for significant snow accumulations of 6 inches or more across portions of the region. The highest snow totals are expected south and east of the I-95 corridor, with a sharp gradient to lower amounts near and north/west of there. Strong winds will be possible from Friday night through Saturday night. The strong winds may cause blowing and drifting snow and very low visibilities, especially near the New Jersey and Delaware coasts. Wind chills will be well below zero Saturday night, with values below -15 possible in the southern Poconos and far northwest New Jersey. Minor coastal flooding is possible Saturday morning along portions of the NJ and D coasts, including Delaware Bay. Marine hazards include gale-force wind gusts along with dangerous seas Friday night through Saturday night.

Delaware Emergency Management Agency notice

The Delaware Emergency Management Agency (DEMA) along with local, state, and federal partners, are closely monitoring the winter storm anticipated to arrive Friday into Saturday. We continue to coordinate with the counties and key state agencies to ensure readiness. The State Emergency Operations Center will be activated beginning at 9 a.m. Friday to coordinate the statewide response. The main threats are anticipated to include high winds which may lead to downed trees and power lines, extreme cold, snow, and minor coastal flooding. A Winter Storm Watch is in effect for all of Delaware and a Gale Warning is in effect for coastal areas and the Delaware Bay. Plan ahead now and be prepared.

How to prepare

Make a plan — preparede.org/make-a-plan

  • Make a plan for where you would go if you have to shelter-in-place or where to go if you need to leave your home.
  • Communicate and practice your plan with family.
  • Have a list of emergency contacts and copies of important documents.
  • Be cautious with alternate heating sources and have working carbon monoxide detectors and smoke alarms.
  • Check snow blowers and generators.
  • Check on friends, family, and neighbors.
  • Plan ahead if you need assistance with snow and ice removal.

Make an emergency kit — preparede.org/make-a-kit

  • Make sure that you have emergency supplies, such as non-perishable food and water, for each member of your family (and pets) to last for at least 3 days.
  • Have a supply of any needed medications and medical equipment.
  • Have an emergency kit in your vehicle as well.
  • Have flashlights and extra batteries in case of power outages and fully charged power banks to charge electronic devices.
  • Make sure that you have warm layers and blankets in case of power outages.

Stay Informed

  • Have multiple ways of monitoring the weather through US National Weather Service Philadelphia/Mount Holly. A NOAA Weather Radio is a great backup system!
  • Register for the Delaware Emergency Notification System (DENS) to receive important emergency alerts here.
  • Monitor our social media pages and local officials if further actions are required.
  • For updates on the roads: deldot.gov and through their app deldot.gov/mobile.
Delaware Division of Public Health notice

Due to the impending winter storm, COVID-19 testing at the Delaware City DMV will be cancelled this weekend from January 28-30. Appointments for this weekend will be honored tonight, Thursday, January 27. Testing will be open tonight from 4:00 p.m. to 9:30 p.m. See more testing options at de.gov/gettested.
Before heading to your COVID-19 vaccination or testing site, please take the extra step and ensure your site is still open and accepting walk-ins if you are unable to make an appointment. The State of Delaware does not manage retail pharmacies and other private providers.

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