Wind, rain and some possible snow-courtesy of a cold front and Hurricane Sandy-will paint the local weather picture tonight through Wednesday this week, according to the National Weather Service in Charleston, W.Va.
"That area is going to have a wind issue-with gusts that could reach 40 to 45 mph, enough to down some trees or power lines," NWS meteorologist Dave Marsalek said Sunday evening.
"But we're also looking at some longevity of rainfall and could see a total of three to four inches of rain through Wednesday," he added. "(Tonight) we'll see the most liquid, and it will be turning pretty chilly, so there may be some wet snow."
The Associated Press
A car goes through the high water as Hurricane Sandy bears down on the East Coast Sunday in Ocean City, Md. Governors from North Carolina, where steady rains were whipped by gusting winds Saturday night, to Connecticut declared states of emergency. Delaware ordered mandatory evacuations for coastal communities by 8 p.m. Sunday.
Marsalek said overnight temperatures are expected in the mid-30s, and the snow is not likely to accumulate.
"If the temperature drops below freezing, the ground is still 55-60 degrees, so there shouldn't be any accumulation," he said.
In the West Virginia mountains, however, snowfall could be significant. Marsalek said areas above 4,000 feet may see two to three feet of snow.
Blizzard and snowstorm warnings have been issued for tonight over the eastern half of the Mountain State.
"In the Marietta area, people who live along streams or rivers should watch for possible flooding, although no flood watches have been issued at this time," he said. "This will be a basin-wide rainfall over a couple of days, so we'll be monitoring the streams closely."
Marsalek said Hurricane Sandy is expected to make landfall tonight in New Jersey, then move north but the storm's remnants, coupled with a cold front that moved into the area over the weekend, will impact local weather over the next few days.
A high pressure system is forecast to move in Thursday, bringing drier weather and warmer temperatures toward the weekend.
Jeff Lauer, emergency management coordinator for Washington County, said people should keep an eye on the weather and be prepared for possible snow.
"This could be the first snow of the year, and many people tend to procrastinate about getting ready for winter weather," he said. "It seems like we get a lot of vehicle accidents when it first snows. So drivers should use caution and slow down if it snows."