The 2023 Thanksgiving travel forecast includes a “potential major storm.” Latest updates.
Although the timing and full extent of impacts remain uncertain at this time, a large storm system is expected to cause problems for Thanksgiving travelers in the air and on the roads next week, according to meteorologists.
The system was described by AccuWeather as a “major storm,” and by the New Jersey office of the National Weather Service as a “potentially large storm system impacting much of the eastern (continental United States) in the Tuesday through Wednesday time frame.”
Right now, many forecasters say it’s likely the New Jersey area will deal with heavy rain, strong winds and possible street flooding from late Tuesday through early Wednesday — traditionally one of the busiest travel periods of the year leading up to Thanksgiving. day.
But the weather service is taking a cautious approach, because the storm is still about five days away from arriving, and it is not yet known whether all the atmospheric elements needed to produce a powerful storm will come together.
“There remains a significant degree of uncertainty regarding the system impacts and timing, but this is something to monitor closely as we head into the busy travel days leading up to Thanksgiving,” the agency’s Mount Holly office said Friday morning. “We continue to monitor the potential impacts of this system, but the exact details remain unclear at this time.”
Cold Thanksgiving forecast
Thanksgiving Day is expected to remain dry, but very cold in New Jersey, with temperatures in the upper 20s to low 30s in the morning and only reaching the low 40s in the afternoon, according to the long-range forecast. Average highs in late November are usually in the low 50s, with lows in the mid to upper 30s.
Cold weather is also forecast for Thanksgiving Day in New York City, with high temperatures expected to barely reach 40 degrees. The Weather Service has not yet issued an official wind forecast for Thursday morning, which could determine whether the large balloons in the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will need to be grounded or can fly at their normal heights.
Travel problems before Thanksgiving
“The main focus of travel issues will arise as a storm forms over the south-central United States and strengthens as it moves northeast through the middle of next week,” AccuWeather said in a forecast report on its website.
“After sparking locally severe thunderstorms over the lower Mississippi Valley on Monday, the storm will spread a band of rain over the Ohio and Tennessee valleys on Monday evening,” AccuWeather added. “Rain will spread over the Great Lakes and central and southern Appalachia on Tuesday… Rain will continue to flow into the mid-Atlantic and parts of New England on Tuesday evening, before moving out to sea and entering Canada on Wednesday.” a night.”
AccuWeather says it expects delays at airports across the country and possible flooding on major highways on Tuesday and Wednesday, including Interstates 80, 81 and 95.
Weather forecast for the weekend
In New Jersey, Friday is expected to be mostly cloudy but pleasant. Afternoon highs are expected to rise to the mid 60s. Light rain showers are likely to fall after midnight and in the early morning hours on Saturday, before the sky gradually stabilizes in the afternoon.
Highs on Saturday will reach the low 50s, but sustained winds of 10 to 20 mph will sometimes reach 30 mph, according to the weather service. Skies are expected to be clear Saturday night, with temperatures dropping to around 30 degrees by Sunday morning, and gusty winds continuing.
Sunday should be mostly sunny but cool, with afternoon highs in the low 50s and gusty winds.
Current weather radar
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Len Melisurgo can be reached at LMelisurgo@njadvancemedia.com or @LensReality.