FAIRFIELD COUNTY, Conn. — You better have your bread, milk, and eggs because you likely won't be heading to the store Thursday as a nor'easter slams into Fairfield County.
What should residents expect from this powerful storm? All of Fairfield County, along with the rest of the state, is under a Winter Storm Warning through 1 a.m. Friday.
Snow is forecast to enter the state by about 4 a.m. Thursday, with snow showers overtaking the region by about 6:30 a.m., according to the National Weather Service.
Heavy snow and blowing snow is expected. Plan on difficult travel conditions during both the morning and evening commutes on Thursday. Tree branches could fall as well due to strong winds.
Total snow accumulations of 5 to 8 inches in southern Fairfield County are possible, with localized amounts of up to 10 inches possible. In northern Fairfield County, snow accumulations of 4 to 6 inches are expected, with locally higher amounts in some areas.
Winds gusting as high as 50 mph will cause areas of blowing and drifting snow during the day and into the evening.
And it will be cold. The daytime high will be near 27, but wind chills will be between 5 and 10. By evening, temperatures will drop to a low of about 10. Wind chill values will drop to -5 and 5.
The snow will continue into the afternoon and taper off by evening.
A Winter Storm Warning for snow and blowing snow means severe winter weather conditions are expected. If you must travel, keep an extra flashlight, food, and water in your vehicle in case of an emergency, the weather service warns.
Gov. Dannel Malloy warned residents that travel will be treacherous on Thursday. "This storm is anticipated to produce very strong winds with the potential for near white-out conditions at its height," he said on Twitter.
"In order to allow CTDOT crews to clear highways as efficiently and safely as possible, it is strongly recommended that motorists stay off the roads unless absolutely necessary," Malloy said. "Employers that can allow people to work from home or alter their hours are encouraged to do so."
Many people won't need to go out. On Thursday, all schools in Fairfield County are closed. And cities and towns have put parking bans in place on local streets to allow for plowing.
Some town halls are closed, and others are on delayed openings for Thursday. Also, nonessential state workers have been told to stay home on Thursday.
Friday will be mostly sunny but very cold, with a high near 12. Wind chill values will be between -5 and -10. It will still be breezy, with winds of 21 to 25 mph and gusts as high as 36 mph.
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