A winter storm starting in the predawn hours of Thursday, February 18, 2021, looks to bring as much as 6 inches of snow to northern Delaware with a mix of sleet and freezing rain thrown in for good measure.
Matt Powell, chief meteorologist for Delaware Weather Network, said the duration of this latest round of winter weather is between 12 and 18 hours, and New Castle County is solidly in the 3- to 5-inch snowfall range.
"It looks like the start time is probably going to be 4 to 6 a.m. [Thursday] morning which obviously is not great for the morning commute," said Powell. "By the evening commute it looks like some areas may have flipped over to sleet and freezing rain, so that's not great for the evening commute."
Powell said precipitation will wind down Thursday night although some snow showers are possible Friday morning.
Mid-to-late morning on Thursday, we could see the beginning of some of the heaviest snowfall.
"By around 9 or 10 in the morning it really picks up," said Powell. "We could be seeing snow come down at an inch an hour for a couple of hours during the height of it.
"Somewhere during the afternoon is when we expect to see that changeover work its way north through Dover and into New Castle County," said Powell. "It's just a matter of how quickly do we go to sleet and then freezing rain."
Powell expects a coating of ice on top of the snow, which will make it more difficult to shovel later in the day and into the evening hours.
"Once you get that ice on top that's just bad news," said Powell. "It's really going to weigh down the snow, it's going to make it much heavier and much harder to move."
Powell said he's holding to the forecast of cold temperatures this weekend, but at least we'll have sunny skies.