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N.J. weather: Winter storm warning, wind advisories issued for the strong weekend storm with rain, snow, 50 mph gusts

N.J. weather: Winter storm warning, wind advisories issued for the strong weekend storm with rain, snow, 50 mph gusts

Forecasters say some areas of northwestern New Jersey could get as much as a half-foot of snow on Saturday, March 12. Other parts of the state will likely see heavy rain changing to snow, along with strong gusty winds that could cause power outages. National Weather Service

The National Weather Service has upgraded its winter storm watch to a winter storm warning for Sussex and Warren counties, saying a powerful storm system that will impact New Jersey on Saturday is likely to drop 4 to 6 inches of snow on the state’s northwestern region and create slick driving conditions.

In addition, the weather service has issued winter weather advisories in 10 counties, where lighter snow is expected, and wind advisories across most areas of the Garden State because of the potential for damaging winds that could cause scattered power outages.

The storm is expected to start as rain, with some isolated thunderstorms possible, during the early morning hours on Saturday. With temperatures forecast to drop below the freezing mark as a strong Arctic cold front pushes in, the rain will likely change to snow in many northern and central New Jersey areas, the National Weather Service said.

On top of the rain and snow, the storm will generate winds that could gust as high as 40 to 50 mph at times — strong enough to knock down some tree’s limbs and power lines.

Forecasters say some areas of northwestern New Jersey could get as much as a half-foot of snow on Saturday, March 12. Other parts of the state will likely see heavy rain changing to snow, along with strong gusty winds that could cause power outages. National Weather Service

New Jersey also faces the prospect of a rapid freeze, as temperatures drop into the low 30s Saturday afternoon, then into the 20s by Saturday night. Temperatures will continue to plummet overnight Saturday, getting down as low as the teens in many areas of the Garden State by Sunday morning, with wind chills in the single digits.

Forecasters say some strong gusts could occur Saturday morning and early in the afternoon, especially if thunderstorms develop.

But most of the fierce winds are expected to be blown after the storm moves away from our region Saturday evening and Saturday night because of the big difference in atmospheric pressure — known as a pressure gradient — between that storm system and a high-pressure system that will be moving in behind it.

Areas shaded in pink are under a winter storm warning on Saturday, March 12. Areas shaded in purple are under a winter weather advisory, and regions in brown are under a wind advisory, along with most other areas of New Jersey. National Weather Service

Areas under a winter storm warning

  • A winter storm warning will be active in Sussex and Warren counties from 6 to 7 pm Saturday, with 4 to 6 inches of snow possible in those areas. Areas of blowing snow could reduce visibility. Gusty winds could bring down tree branches.

Areas under a winter weather advisory

  • A winter weather advisory will be active from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday in Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Morris, and Somerset counties, where 1 to 3 inches of snow is expected, along with wind gusts as high as 45 mph.
  • A winter weather advisory will be active from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday in eastern Bergen, eastern Essex, eastern Passaic, eastern Union, western Essex, and western Union counties, where 2 to 4 inches of snow is forecast, along with wind gusts as strong as 45 mph.
  • A winter weather advisory will be active from 8 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday in western Bergen and western Passaic, where 2 to 4 inches of snow is forecast, along with wind gusts up to 45 mph.
  • A winter weather advisory will be active from 9 a.m. to 7 p.m. Saturday in Hudson County, where 1 to 3 inches of snow is expected, along with wind gusts up to 50 mph.

Areas under a wind advisory

  • A wind advisory will be active from 10 a.m. Saturday to 1 a.m. Sunday in Atlantic, Burlington, Camden, Cape May, Cumberland, Gloucester, Hunterdon, Mercer, Middlesex, Monmouth, Morris, Ocean, Salem, Somerset, Sussex, and Warren counties. Wind gusts could get as strong as 45 to 50 mph at times.

NOTE: For the most current winter storm warnings and advisories, check the National Weather Service’s active alerts.

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