Update: About 5 crashes in Southold; more snow coming Tuesday
Update 7:30 p.m.: Southold Town police said there have been about five car accidents reported in town since the snow began Monday morning. None of the accidents were serious, a police source said.
Town Highway Superintendent Vincent Orlando said the roads are still “slushy and slippery.” Residents are advised to stay indoors. Those who must travel should take caution, Mr. Orlando said.
“We’re still plowing and keeping up with the snow,” he said.
The edge of the storm was moving through New York City as of 5:30 p.m. and the last of the snow is expected to move through the local area by 8 p.m., National Weather Service meteorologist Gary Conte said.
Spotters in Orient documented a full 6 inches at 5 p.m. on Monday. The storm also brought 5.5 inches of snow to Riverhead as of 3:30 p.m., according to NWS data.
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With Monday’s snowstorm tapering off, snow totals for the next batch of wintery weather coming Tuesday night have been upgraded, according to the National Weather Service.
Forecasts now show between three to five inches of additional snow could be dumped on the North Fork by Wednesday morning, with the precipitation changing over to freezing rain in the afternoon and causing icy conditions across the East End, Mr. Conte said.
As for the rest of the week, NWS meteorologist John Murray said Thursday and Friday will be cold and dry and there’s chance for more snow over the weekend.
“There is another system that has our attention,” he said. “There’ll likely be some changes from forecast to forecast. At the current time, what we have is another chance of snow. Slight chance Saturday morning and we’ll see that chance of snow generally exist through the remainder of the weekend into next Monday.”
Update 2:30 p.m.: Southold Town Highway Superintendent Vincent Orlando warned of slushy conditions on the roadways Monday afternoon, as the snow continues to fall and temperatures hover around freezing.
“The roads are a slushy mess,”Southold Town Highway Superintendent Vincent Orlando said Monday afternoon. “Our guys are making the rounds, but by the time they finish [plowing] they’re right back where they started from. It is a little rough out there still. It’s slippery. Drive slow.”
Residents are advised to stay off the roads if possible.
The heavy snow is expected to taper off after 6 p.m.
Southold Town Hall is closing early at 3 p.m.
With several inches of snow already blanketing the North Fork, weather experts say the area could see totals of about eight inches by the time Monday’s storm ends this evening.
But unfortunately for those looking for relief from the snow, forecasts show another blast of wintery weather is coming Tuesday night, though snowfall totals won’t be nearly as high.
Cutchogue has been hit with the highest snowfall totals on the North Fork so far, with 3.8 inches as of 11 a.m., according to National Weather Service data. Orient reported seeing 2.5 inches of snow just before 10 a.m.
The north shore of Long Island is seeing slightly higher amounts of snow due to colder air that turned Monday morning’s mix of rain and sleet into snow, said meteorologist Joe Picca.
The snow is set to continue at about 1/2 inch to 1 inch per hour, he said.
“Over the next few hours, just expect what we’re seeing right now to continue,” Mr. Picca said.
By mid-afternoon, the snowfall will start to taper off, with only scattered light snow after 5 p.m., he said. By 10 p.m., the last flurries should be gone.
A winter weather warning remains in effect for all of Suffolk County until 7 p.m.
Southold Town Highway Superintendent Vincent Orlando said the roads aren’t as bad as they have been in the past.
“We are right on the cusp of freezing and not freezing, so it’s slushy,” Mr. Orlando said Monday morning.
Crews began salting the roads at 5 a.m. Monday and were plowing by 7:30, he said.
“We will be out there late into the evening,” Mr. Orlando said. “Once the snow finally stops we’ll plow again and then sand it so commuters will be safe going to work in the morning.”
Though forecasts predict Tuesday will be dry for most of the day with temperatures around the mid-30s, the break from snow and freezing rain won’t last, Mr. Picca said.
A new storm system is expected to churn through the area from the southwest around 9 p.m. Tuesday. The North Fork can expect to see “widespread snow” overnight, which will switch over to freezing rain and sleet in the morning, current forecasts show.
“It looks like a big mixed bag heading into Wednesday,” Mr. Picca said.
By the afternoon, the precipitation should be mostly rain, he said. No weather advisories are in effect for Suffolk for that storm yet.
February is already off to a wet start, and comes on the heels of a significantly snowier January than normal, Mr. Picca said.
According to climate data from the National Weather Service’s observations in Islip, Long Island saw 25.2 inches of snow during January.
The average snowfall for that time of year is just 6.7 inches, Mr. Picca said.
“We basically quadrupled normal snowfall,” he said. The snowiest January on record was in 2011, when 34.4 inches were reported, he said.