The third nor’easter in 10 days is expected to blast parts of the Northeast with snow, ice and heavy winds overnight Monday — threatening a fresh round of power outages and treacherous travel conditions.
The latest system affects about 49 million people from Tennessee through Maine. It dumped from 2 to 4 inches of snow across southern Illinois and Kentucky, including as much as 11 inches in the Lexington metropolitan area.
But forecasters warned the worst is yet to come.
“This is going to bring what could be blizzard conditions to parts of New England by Tuesday,” Weather Channel meteorologist Danielle Banks said.
East Coast braces for possible 3rd nor'easter in 10 days
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Snowfall rates are expected of 1 to 3 inches per hour are expected in some areas along with gusts of 55 mph or more.
Winter storm warnings are in place across parts of western Virginia and North Carolina, where 3 to 5 inches of snow are expected to accumulate Monday, with up to 8 inches possible in some isolated areas.
The system will also bring rains through parts of the mid-Atlantic through Monday.
The last time there was a quick succession of nor’easters was also when three formed over 10 days in late January and February 2015, according to National Weather Service forecaster David Roth, who keeps a database of such storms with high winds.
A few unlucky people in Lexington woke up to find that all this heavy snow brought trees down onto their vehicles @LEX18News pic.twitter.com/j9WUtzYsyq
— Tiffany Jackson (@TiffanyLEX18) March 12, 2018
As the storm barrels up the East Coast, New York and Philadelphia could get a couple inches of snow through Tuesday, although the rest of upstate New York, eastern Long Island and New England could see varying amounts of at least 6 inches, according to The Weather Channel.
By the evening commute, the snow could stretch from New Jersey up through New England.
Boston could see up to a foot of snow and Cape Cod could be hammered with even more, while southern Maine could get 18 inches by Wednesday, forecasters said.
Meanwhile, strong winds have the potential to wreak havoc again in New England, bringing down already weathered trees and power lines. Coastal towns in Massachusetts are also recovering from devastating flooding from the first nor’easter on March 2, when at least nine people died.
Last Wednesday’s nor’easter dropped as much as 2 feet of snow in some parts and cut electricity to more than 1 million people. At least two deaths were attributed to the storm.
Nor’easters typically begin as low-pressure storms with winds that blow northeast to southwest. They might form between September and April, and carry rain or snow and create coastal flooding.
And just because spring is looming, Roth added, doesn’t mean another nor’easter is out of the question.
In April 2007, a particularly nasty nor’easter formed, raking the Carolinas to New England, killing at least 18 people, nearly canceling the Boston marathon and plunging tens of thousands into darkness.
Concerns over continued power outages continue with this storm as under 10,000 utility customers remained without power Monday morning — mainly in Massachusetts, New Jersey and New York — because of last week’s nor’easter.
Officials and residents have complained about the slow restoration, with Westchester County Executive George Latimer last week calling for the heads of New York electric and gas companies to resign. A spokesman for Con Edison in New York said it was taking so long because the two earlier nor’easters were “extremely severe.”