Greenwich could be in line for heavy snow, but still miss worst of storm

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UPDATED THURSDAY 11:45 A.M— The forecasts are fluctuating, but the weathermen all agree: There’s a big storm coming.

The Town of Greenwich is expected to have a statement later today to prepare residents for what could well be heavy snowfall this weekend so they can be prepared. First Selectman Peter Tesei told the Post on Thursday that town officials would meet today on it and a statement would be released in the late afternoon. Gov. Dannel Malloy is expected to have a 6 p.m. press briefing on state preparations for the storm.

With many concerned about the snow and winds potentially knocking out power, Connecticut Light & Power issued a release Thursday morning saying it had activated its emergency response plan and, “… is prepared for any possible power outages as the predicted heavy, wet snow and high winds have the potential to bring trees down onto power lines. “

The utility says residents dependent on electricity should make preparations now to either have emergency generators or be at another location. CL&P pledged that it has crews at pre-staged locations ready to respond to issues if and when they develop in the state. A lack of workers ready to go was a major complaint from Greenwich residents and town officials about the response to Superstorm Sandy. The town also suffered through major power loss in the October 2011 storm, leaving many wary about the potential impact here.

As snow forecasts for approaching nor’easter continue to fluctuate, it appears that southwest Connecticut could escape the worst of the blizzard, which has been named Nemo. However, avoiding the worst of the storm could still mean a heavy amount of snow in the area as forecasts have speculated that there could still be 10 to 14 inches in the area according to the National Weather Forecast.

A winter storm watch is in effect from Friday afternoon through Saturday afternoon for southern Fairfield County. But finding how Nemo will affect Fairfield County is still too early to tell. Forecasts have ranged from six inches to two feet of snow.

It could bring heavy snow, sleet and strong winds, according to the weather service. Winds are expected to be north at 20 to 30 mph, with gusts up to 55 mph. The temperature is expected to be around 30 by Friday afternoon.

The worst of the storm is expected to be from Friday afternoon to Saturday morning.

While earlier forecasts were warning of more rain here, it now appears there will be much more snow than rain, with some trace amounts of ice, on Friday. This storm is expected to be much worse east and north of Fairfield County, where blizzard watches, which are a step above winter storm watches, are in effect all the way to Boston and northern Massachusetts.

But locally the weather service is warning of “near blizzard conditions” here that could make for dangerous driving condition and bring down some tree limbs, causing scattered power outages. Snow could start early Friday morning, according to the weather service, leaving a half inch by the time the sun rises.

More snow is expected before 1 p.m., then it could turn to rain along the coast and be a wintry mix to the north. But the snow-rain line continues to fluctuate, meaning it could be either precipitation here. But for now, Friday’s high is expected to be near 38. New snow accumulation during the day on Friday could total two inches.

On Friday night, any wintry mix that is falling will become all snow after 10 p.m. as the temperature drops down to 23 overnight. Expect a “blustery,” north wind at 18 to 25 mph, with gusts up to 55 mph, according to the weather service. New snow accumulation over Friday night could six to 10 inches.

Heavy snow could continue to fall until 1 p.m. Saturday. It could continue until 4 p.m. — but it might not. It’s too early to tell. Saturday’s high is expected to be 30 and windy. Temperatures could drop to 11 on Saturday night, which could be a worry for anyone who loses power because of this storm.

Check back to Greenwich-post.com for more updates as they become available.

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