CHICAGO — A storm gathering steam over the southern Rockies is expected to dump more than a foot of snow on parts of the Midwest, New York and New England, which is still recovering from a winter walloping it received just a few days ago. It's also bad news for those planning to drive to Super Bowl parties.
Here's the outlook:
The storm is forecast to move into the Midwest on Saturday night and last through Monday morning. It's expected to be the most widespread storm of the season so far and dump a significant amount of snow from Nebraska to Maine, National Weather Service meteorologist Ricky Castro said.
It's also forecast to be unusually slow-moving, meaning accumulations of between 10 to 14 inches of snow are possible for parts of northern Illinois, Indiana and northwest Ohio. Similar amounts of snow are expected for the Northeast on Monday.
"This is going to be a very high-impact storm for a large swath of the eastern half of the country," Castro said.
SUPER BOWL PARTY SPOILER?
The storm could make road conditions hazardous for those heading to Super Bowl parties, especially in the Midwest, where the most intense period of snow is forecast to hit Sunday right around game time. Combine that with potential wind gusts of up to 40 mph, and drivers could face terrible visibility and snarling snow drifts. The good news for game-day revelers living near public transportation in the Chicago area is that the storm is not expected to be rough enough to shut down train traffic.
Parts of New England are still recovering from a blizzard that threw down a record 34.5 inches of snow in the central Massachusetts city of Worcester, where dump trucks and front-end loaders had to be brought in to move snow. The Monday and Tuesday storm hit Boston with 24 inches, and Providence, Rhode Island, had about 19 inches.
Another foot or so could spell particular trouble for snow-clearing operations in Boston's narrow streets.
SNOW PLOWS DESTROYED
The small town of Henniker, New Hampshire, will have to find a way to clear the snow without the majority of its plows. Nearly its entire fleet of snow-clearing equipment was destroyed in a fire on Friday night at a garage, according to the Concord Monitor.
"This puts the town in a bad spot," Henniker Fire Chief Steve Burritt told the newspaper. "The town has a serious problem for snow removal. Not that there isn't a solution, but it's going to be a challenge."
No injuries were reported, and authorities were still investigating the cause.
The only heavy equipment spared — two pickup trucks and a front-end loader — was parked outside the garage.