Be careful Outsiders—there’s a massive winter storm brewing in much of the United States. And it may affect your New Year’s Day plans.
As reported by The Sun, the coming storm spans from the Rockies into northern New England. It may bring up to eight inches of snow to many low-lying areas. And more than three feet of the white stuff could cover parts of the Cascades, Sawtooth, and Wasatch mountain ranges.
Today, the National Weather Service’s (NWS) Prediction Center issued a warning that the “significant” weather will likely cause “widespread hazardous travel conditions” throughout the holiday.
The event, which NWS dubbed Winter Storm Frida, should develop over the southern Plains today (Dec. 30th) and then move into the Great Lakes early tomorrow morning.
And some areas will see severe thunderstorms before temperatures drop and cause heavy snow and ice. Some more southern locations can also expect significant mixed precipitation—including sleet and freezing rain.
Officials have already issued warnings to parts of Nebraska, Iowa, and Colorado. And Northern California, Oregon, Arizona, Utah, Washington State, New Mexico, and Idaho and under winter weather advisories.
Aside from the snow, sub-zero temperatures will also hit the far north-central US region. And Wind Chill Warnings are in place.
In total, Winter Storm Frida should bring significant weather to 18 states.
Severe Storms Will Hit Much of the Southern U.S.
Furthermore, meteorologists are expecting outlying areas across the Mississippi and Ohio River Valleys to experience flash flooding. And parts of Texas and Ohio could have an outbreak of tornados.
According to CNN, Dallas, Texas to Lexington, Kentucky, have the greatest risk for severe storms on Friday night. And on Saturday, the front will move southeast.
“Strong to severe storms are again possible Saturday into Saturday night,” the NWS office in Hunstville, Alabama said. “Primary weather hazards are damaging wind gusts and heavy rainfall with localized flooding. But hail and tornadoes cannot be ruled out.”
Airlines Cancel Flights Ahead of Winter Storm Frida
With Winter Storm Frida on the way, airlines have already canceled over 1,000 flights across the US. And travelers can expect more cancelations and delays as the weather develops.
Southwest Airlines issued a statement on its website warning that service to Chicago, Denver, and Milwaukee will likely be the most affected.
“Based on the forecasted weather conditions for the following cities and dates below, our scheduled service may be disrupted (flights may be delayed, diverted, and/or canceled),” reads the alert.
However, the airlines assure flyers that they will be able to rebook their travel plans within 14 days of the original date without facing additional charges.