Winter storm to strike region early Wednesday

03.11.14 | Bob Price

Spring break is over, at least according to Mother Nature’s schedule.

After a weekend respite from an unrelenting winter, forecasters say a winter storm is bearing down on the area and should arrive by midweek.

Snowfall predictions are difficult because of several variables, but all of the region is on a winter storm watch, which means significant snowfall is possible.

“Generally a watch means 7 or more inches of snow possible or a mix of precipitation that may be more significant. At this point several inches of snow are possible, starting early Wednesday morning,” said Joanne LaBounty, a meteorologist with the National Weather Service in Binghamton.

“Right now, it’s still a question as to how much warm air is in the system,” LaBounty said.

“The further south and east you go, the better chance for mixing, like in the Binghamton area and south and east. There will be less of a mix and more snow north and west and in the Finger Lakes area. It’s a transition time between winter and spring and we can we get either or both (rain and snow) within a week.”

The good news is, after a couple of days of colder temperatures and messy roads, conditions are expected to improve by Friday, with more sunshine and temperatures again climbing into the mid-40s.

In fact, rapidly changing conditions are typical for March and this winter as a whole hasn’t been that unusual, said WENY-TV meteorologist Craig Flint.

“March is one of those months where the atmosphere is in transition. It’s trying to do a balancing act,” Flint said.

“I tell people it’s March. It happens. Let’s all act like we’ve seen snow before. This winter is not that far off normal. The last really harsh winter comparable to this one was 2004, so it’s been a while. Winter has been just a little more the way it ought to be this time of year.”