‘Major storm’ to ring in new year in Upstate NY with freezing rain, ice – syracuse.com

Syracuse, N.Y. — First, flooding rains arrived on Christmas Eve. Now a messy mix of ice and rain is headed for Upstate New York just in time for New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day.

“Another major storm system arriving on a holiday,” the National Weather Service in Binghamton noted.

This storm won’t be conveying nearly as much water as the Christmas storm, so there won’t be the same widespread flooding threat. The New Year’s storm could still be treacherous for anybody on the roads for the holiday, however.

The weather service has issued a hazardous weather outlook for Central and eastern New York. A messy mix of freezing rain and sleet could spread over the area Thursday night and continue into Friday before turning into rain Friday afternoon.

“Icy roads will be possible,” the outlook said, “especially New Year’s morning.”

Freezing rain and sleet forecasts several days in advance are tricky because even a couple degrees difference in temperatures could spell the difference between wet roads and icy ones.

Forecasters are confident that there will be some kind of rain Thursday and Friday, frozen or not. Unlike the Christmas storm, they’re not as worried this time about flooding. Last week, several inches of water was standing in the deep snow pack in the Southern Tier, and temperatures in the 50s and heavy rain expected to cause flooding. Some rivers jumped their banks, but most escaped widespread floods.

“Unlike last week, the widespread deep snow pack is mostly gone,” the weather service said. “The rain and snow melt this time could possibly lead to localized problems, but widespread flash flooding and river flooding does not look likely.”

Saturday will be warmer, with highs in the upper 40s in much of Upstate. Sunday will be cooler, with highs in the mid 30s and a chance of snow showers.

Ice and rain usher in 2021 in Upstate New York

A messy mix of rain and ice could cover Upstate New York on New Year’s Day.

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