Get ready to get walloped by snow storm

·2 min read

Jan. 28—Snow is a certainty, but accumulation estimates vary

By Matthew P. Knox

While it's certain that north-central Connecticut will get several inches of snow starting tonight, forecasters are unsure how much the total will be.

The best guess is that Hartford and Tolland counties will receive 8 to 12 inches of snow, National Weather Service Meteorologist Kristie Smith said this morning.

However, other models show Tolland County receiving somewhere in the range of 12 to 18 inches in what will end up being a 24-hour snow event, Smith said.

She said Connecticut is stuck in a zone of uncertainty, because it's not clear yet how much the storm will expand west. As it expands, snow totals could go up more, Smith said.

Moving west across the state, the difference in snow totals between one side to the other could be up to a foot, Smith added.

The storm will run from about 3 a.m. Saturday to midnight, with the snow falling heaviest between 7 a.m. and 7 p.m., said Smith. Wind gusts are forecast to reach between 40 and 50 mph.

It's also going to be cold. Temperatures will be only in the teens during the day Saturday, and in the single digits overnight, according to Smith. Sunday will be a bit warmer, in the 20's, and sunny.

Overall, the state isn't expected to bear the brunt of the storm. That is reserved for coastal Massachusetts, which could receive 2 feet of snow and wind gusts up to 70 mph, Smith said.

Still, in Connecticut the storm will create treacherous and even life-threatening conditions on the roads, and the National Weather Service is recommending that anyone who doesn't have to travel Saturday avoid doing so.

In an update about the storm Thursday afternoon, the state Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection said the storm could result in very low visibility and snow-covered roads.

Meanwhile, Eversource has said it is prepared for whatever the storm brings.

The company said Thursday that it is bringing crews from outside the state that will be staged in certain areas to quickly respond to damage to power lines.

In order to fix any damage, the company is also moving extra utility poles, wire, transformers and other equipment, Eversource announced.

For breaking news and happenings in North Central Connecticut, follow Matthew Knox on Twitter: @MatthewPKnoxJI, and Facebook: Matthew P. Knox JI.