Multiple storm systems could impact travelers on Thanksgiving
Two separate systems will impact holiday travelers on Saturday — one in New England and the other along the West Coast — bringing rain, snow and the potential for travel delays.
The system in the east will push rain and gusty winds into coastal New England and some snow showers through the White and Green Mountains.
If you have travel flexibility, and are driving rather than flying, it may be better to wait until Sunday in most parts of New England. Travelers in and out of Boston will likely encounter showers, patchy fog and winds of up to 30 mph on Saturday. By Sunday, sunshine will return and wind speeds will drop to 10 to 20 mph.
The West Coast system will begin Saturday in the Portland, Oregon, area and extend through San Diego.
The rain will also spread to desert cities, including Phoenix, Las Vegas and Albuquerque, and will continue Sunday from Seattle to Eureka, California.
Travel impact forecast for Sunday
More than 6 million people from Southern California to southern Idaho are under wind warnings through Sunday. Winds could reach 40 to 50 mph with gusts up to 60 mph in the mountains.
“Winds of this strength can make driving difficult, especially for high-profile vehicles and motorcycles,” the National Weather Service in Las Vegas said. “Gusty winds will blow around unsecured objects. Tree branches could be blown off and this could lead to power outages.
Sunday will also see this system shift eastward into the Western Mountain and Central Plains region.
Rain and snow will extend at higher elevations from Washington to Colorado. Salt Lake City will see showers, but as temperatures drop Sunday evening, they will gradually turn to a mix of rain and snow.
The focus across the Central Plains will be rain and thunderstorms from Nebraska to Texas.
By Monday, a new threat begins across the Gulf Coast with the potential for tornadoes, hail and damaging winds.
As this low pressure system deepens and advances eastward, it will also spread rain from Minnesota across Louisiana.
Rain chances increase through Monday in Shreveport, with thunderstorms developing in the late afternoon and continuing into the evening.
The day with the most weather-related headaches for travelers will likely be Tuesday, as a low pressure system brings rain and thunderstorms to the majority of the eastern half of the country.
The area where possible rainfall is expected includes major airport cities – New York, Washington, Chicago and Atlanta. Everyone can see the delay and frustration of the wet forecast.
Atlanta could see more than an inch of rain in less than 24 hours on Tuesday, and winds could reach or exceed 30 mph throughout the day, though thunderstorms will be mostly limited to the afternoon. .