Light snow expected for southeastern Connecticut

New London — A thrust of warm air forced weather experts to cut back a bit on initial forecasts for snowstorms in the state, with most of southeastern Connecticut likely to see no more than an inch or two overnight into Sunday.

"Warm air is overriding everybody except extreme western Connecticut," Gary Lessor, a meteorologist and assistant director of the Weather Center at Western Connecticut State University in Danbury, said on Saturday afternoon. Some locations farther inland could see closer to 4 inches of snow, Lessor said, but with "a quick change to rain and some brief icing in northern New London County."

While temperatures should warm into the low-50s by Sunday morning, Lessor still expects a flash freeze Sunday night and single-digit temperatures Monday morning, with wind chill factors between 15 and 20 degrees below zero "even along the shoreline." Tuesday will likely hit highs in the 20s.

Though the weekend snowstorm may not be as strong as expected days ago, state officials announced several precautions, including Gov. Ned Lamont's partial activation of the state's Emergency Operations Center at 6 p.m. on Saturday to monitor potential snow, sleet and freezing rain conditions across Connecticut.

With bitterly cold temperatures predicted over the next few days, State Rep. Holly Cheeseman, R-East Lyme, noted in a news release that the state's cold weather emergency protocol is active from noon on Saturday through noon on Wednesday, Jan. 23.

United Way of Connecticut 211 provides 24-hour cold weather resources to those in need; the warming center closest to southeastern Connecticut is at the Columbus House in Middletown. Libraries, senior centers and other public locations are also options to keep warm or seek shelter.

In a news release Friday, Eversource said it has line workers, tree crews and support staff ready to respond to the storm and is encouraging customers to prepare for the possibility of outages.

"We are closely monitoring weather conditions and planning accordingly so we have crews in position to respond and be there for our customers when they need us," said Eversource Vice President of Electric System Operations Mike Hayhurst.

Connecticut Water issued a frozen pipe alert for Sunday and Monday, encouraging homeowners to take some basic steps to prevent damage, including knowing areas most vulnerable to freezing; eliminating sources of cold air near water lines; knowing the location of your main water shut-off valve; and protecting pipes and water meters.

b.kail@theday.com

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