The Daily Item
STATE COLLEGE - A wall of rain and wind crossing the Appalachians will reach the Central Susquehanna Valley later today.
The weather conditions accompanying a front will not only mark an end to the brief warmth, but can also cause a slew of travel problems, said Alex Sosnowski, an expert senior meteorologist at Accuweather in State College. This front has had a history of severe weather over the Mississippi, Ohio and Tennessee valleys.
A period of drenching, blinding rain will push from west to east, crossing the Appalachian Mountains, the eastern Great Lakes and the upper Gulf Coast region during the afternoon.
There is the potential for 1 to 2 inches of rain over a several-hour period.
Combined with the terrain in the mountains and the frozen ground, rapid runoff can also lead to flash and small stream or urban flooding.
The rain will be heavy enough to cause sudden low visibility, especially when combined with strong wind gusts. The gusts will range from 40 to 50 mph in many locations. In some coastal areas and over the ridges, gusts can reach 60 mph.
The worst of the rain and wind will reach the New York City area and Jacksonville, Fla. during Wednesday night and then central and eastern New England overnight Wednesday into the first thing Thursday morning.
The winds can be strong enough to down tree limbs and cause sporadic power outages.
Motorists and those with flights from the Appalachians to the Atlantic coast should expect delays to build into the evening hours as the rain and high winds roll eastward.
The rain and wind mark the first of two pushes of colder air. The first will erase the record warmth Wednesday night and into Thursday. The second will bring two to three days of arctic chill beginning Thursday and Friday, Accuweather reports.