No snow today, but more on the way

Southeastern Connecticut is in for a reprieve from the snow today, but don't get too comfortable.

Snow showers are forecast for Wednesday, Thursday and Sunday with potential for another storm on Monday, according to meteorologist Gary Lessor from the Weather Center at Western Connecticut State University.

"The groundhog made an extremely accurate forecast today," Lessor said late Monday about the prediction for six more weeks of winter.

Monday's storm brought 7½ inches of snow and sleet to Groton and a little over 6 inches to Norwich, according to Lessor. He said temperatures in the single digits and low teens Monday night followed by a high of 23 degrees in New London Tuesday could produce black ice in some locations this morning.

That potential danger caused Stonington to delay the opening of schools this morning by 90 minutes while the Montville and Lyme-Old Lyme school systems will open two hours late. Those school systems announced their delays Modnay night while others are expected to do so early this morning. A decision on reopening the New London schools, which have been closed for five straight days, will be made early this morning.

Cold is expected to be a given throughout the week, with temperatures peaking at a high of 37 degrees in Groton and New London Wednesday before falling to a high of 22 degrees Friday and then climbing back to about 30 degrees through the weekend, Lessor said.

Wednesday is predicted to bring mostly cloudy skies with snow showers, he said. The coast is predicted to see rain in addition to snow, he said.

On Thursday, the area is expected to have a brush with a storm system moving up from the Mid-Atlantic, towing in light to moderate snowfall. Sunday could also include a snow shower.

Arctic high pressure in southeastern Canada could push a storm system expected to move into the area Monday out to sea, according to Lessor.

"Depending on where this high ends up located we either get snow or we end up escaping," he said.

He said it was too early to say whether the storm system could compare to the blizzard that hit the area Tuesday.

"At this point, nobody could forecast that," he said.

Providence, Bradley International Airport and Bridgeport have seen roughly 50 percent more snowfall this winter than they did by the same time a year ago, according to Lessor. He said that those areas had seen somewhere in the ballpark of 30 inches of snow this season, compared to total snowfalls in the low 20- inch range by February last winter.

He noted that with the blizzard that hit southeastern Connecticut last Tuesday, the local area could have seen an even greater increase. Groton has seen more than 37 inches of snow this winter, he said.

t.townsend@theday.com

Twitter: @ConnecticuTess

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