National Weather Service United States Department of Commerce

WINTER STORM SUMMARY FOR
FEBRUARY 05, 2010 TO FEBRUARY 6, 2010 EVENT

Synopsis

The Middle Atlantic area was impacted by a strong Nor'easter from Friday evening February 5th through Saturday February 6th. A low pressure system organized along the Gulf Coast and tracked northeastward through the Southeastern States. By Saturday morning February 6th, the center of this low was located near the North Carolina coast. This system continued to strengthen as it moved east-northeast near the Mid Atlantic coast. With plenty of cold air across the region, snow began falling late Friday afternoon and evening through the Delmarva Peninsula. By late Friday night, snow had overspread much of southeastern Pennsylvania and southern New Jersey. As the low pressure system intensified, heavier bands of snow pushed through much of the region during the overnight hours and into Saturday, and these bands produced significant snow accumulations. Farther north, snow accumulations were not as high across the Lehigh Valley of northeast Pennsylvania and northern parts of New Jersey.

Watches/Warnings/Advisories

A Winter Storm Watch was issued at 323 am Thursday February 4th for the following areas: New Castle, Kent, and Sussex in Delaware; Cecil, Kent, Queen Annes, Talbot, and Caroline in Maryland; Hunterdon, Somerset, Middlesex, Western Monmouth, Eastern Monmouth, Mercer, Salem, Gloucester, Camden, Northwestern Burlington, Ocean, Cumberland, Atlantic, Cape May, and Southeastern Burlington in New Jersey; Berks, Lehigh, Chester, Montgomery, Bucks, Delaware, and Philadelphia in Pennsylvania. At 143 pm Thursday February 4th, a Blizzard Warning was issued for the following areas: Kent and Sussex in Delaware; Ocean, Cumberland, Atlantic, Cape May, and Southeastern Burlington in New Jersey. A Winter Storm Warning was issued at 143 pm Thursday February 4th for the following areas: Hunterdon, Somerset, Middlesex, Western Monmouth, Eastern Monmouth, Mercer, Salem, Gloucester, Camden, Northwestern Burlington, Warren, and Morris in New Jersey; Berks, Lehigh, Chester, Montgomery, Bucks, Delaware, Philadelphia, and Northampton in Pennsylvania; Cecil, Kent, Queen Annes, Talbot, and Caroline in Maryland; New Castle in Delaware. At 400 pm Friday February 5th, a Winter Weather Advisory was issued for the following areas: Sussex in New Jersey; Carbon and Monroe in Pennsylvania. At 1010 pm Friday February 5th, the Winter Storm Warning was upgraded to a Blizzard Warning for the following areas: Kent, Queen Annes, Talbot, and Caroline in Maryland. At 558 am Saturday February 6th, the Winter Storm Warning was downgraded to a Winter Weather Advisory for the following areas: Warren and Morris in New Jersey.

Precipitation/Temperatures/Winds

Significant snow accumulations were measured across the Delmarva, southern New Jersey, and southeastern Pennsylvania from this storm. Philadelphia recorded its second highest snowfall for any single event with 28.5 inches at the Philadelphia International Airport. This surpassed the previous second highest snowfall of 23.2 inches measured earlier this winter season during the December 19-20, 2009 storm. Wilmington, DE recorded its highest snowfall ever for any single event with 25.8 inches. Elsewhere, Atlantic City, NJ came in with 18.2 inches making this its third highest snowfall for any single event. 

Strong, gusty winds were also recorded with this storm system. Some of the higher wind gusts included 61 mph measured at Lewes, DE; 60 mph at Georgetown, DE; and 51 mph at Tuckerton, NJ. Wind gusts of 40 mph or greater were also recorded at Philadelphia, Dover, Wilmington, and Atlantic City. As a result, considerable blowing and drifting of snow with reduced visibilities occurred throughout the region. Temperatures remained in the 20s for most areas during the storm, yielding a light, fluffy snow.

Significant Impacts/Aspects

With the heavy snow bands that developed across the region Friday night into Saturday, snowfall rates of 1 to 2 inches per hour extended from portions of the Delmarva into southern New Jersey and southeastern Pennsylvania. The Philadelphia International Airport was shut down for a time during Saturday February 6th because plow trucks could not keep the runways clear due to the heavy snow and strong winds. Elsewhere, snow covered trees and power lines along with gusty winds created numerous power outages across southern New Jersey, especially in Cape May county. Even though the snow ended by Saturday afternoon and evening across the region, Philadelphia area schools were closed on Monday, February 8th because additional time was needed to clear roadways and sidewalks.

Notes

Information contained in this summary is preliminary. More complete and/or detailed information may be contained in subsequent monthly NOAA storm data publications.