Jan. 4, 2 p.m. - Stay off the roads unless it’s an emergency. That’s the message from the state’s top office, as Gov. John Carney issued a State of Emergency for Sussex County and has restricted driving for essential personnel only. Snow is tapering off in many areas in the Cape Region.
Jan. 4, 6 a.m. – The Cape Region is waking up to blizzard conditions as snow continues to fall, drifted by high winds. The National Weather Service is calling for 4 to 8 inches of snow during the day, mainly before 3 p.m., with temperatures reaching near 29 degrees. High winds are drifting the snow, with gusts as high as 65 mph. Wind is from the northwest, 39 to 44 mph, decreasing to 29 to 34 mph in the afternoon.
Jan. 3, 3:30 p.m. – Skies remain blue in coastal Sussex, but the National Weather Service has issued a blizzard warning starting at 7 p.m. tonight and lasting until 7 p.m. tomorrow. Six to 10 inches of snow are expected with winds gusting as high as 45 mph. The region is likely to see drifting snow, and officials say scattered power outages could develop Thursday and Friday.
A blizzard warning means that severe winter weather is likely. Falling and blowing snow with strong winds will limit visibility and may lead to whiteout conditions that would make travel dangerous.
Citizens are urged not to travel during the storm. Those who must travel should take a winter survival kit.
Jan. 3, 9 a.m. – The frigid temperatures held overnight, and most Sussex County residents woke up to single-digit temperatures this morning. The National Weather Service forecasts the temperature to rise to 33 degrees Jan. 3 ahead of what could be a harsh winter storm overnight into Thursday, Jan. 4. Snow is expected to begin falling after 10 p.m. and continue throughout the day Jan. 4. Winds overnight are expected to be 21 to 26 mph with gusts near 40 mph. Forecasters expect 2 to 4 inches overnight, with another 1 to 3 inches before 1 p.m., Jan. 4.
A winter storm warning is in effect from 7 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 3, through 5 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 4. The wind may cause problems with snow drifts Jan. 4, as a sustained wind is expected at about 32 mph with gusts near 50 mph. The high temperature for Jan. 4 is expected to be about 29 degrees.
The bitter cold will return overnight Thursday into Friday, Jan. 5 and continue through the weekend. The National Weather Service is forecasting a low of 14 degrees with a wind chill of -2 degrees overnight into Friday. Winds are expected to continue at 26 to 29 mph with gusts near 45 mph. The high temperature Saturday, Jan. 6 is forecasted at 16 degrees with a low of 9 degrees overnight into Sunday, Jan. 7.
Cold-weather shelters are open statewide following a Code Purple alert, which is issued when overnight temperatures are expected to dip below 32 degrees. The Immanuel Shelter in Rehoboth is the only Code Purple shelter in eastern Sussex County, opening nightly from early December through spring. For more information, go to immanuelshelter.org or call 888-634-9992.
Jan. 2 – Cape Region residents welcomed 2018 huddled inside, as most outdoor New Year’s Eve celebrations were canceled because of dangerously low temperatures.
The deep freeze is expected to continue through the week. The National Weather Service forecasted a high temperature of 26 degrees Tuesday, Jan. 2, with temperatures dipping to 18 degrees overnight.
A freezing spray advisory was issued for the Delaware Bay until 5 p.m., Jan. 2. The advisory warns ice may accumulate on vessels, but it is expected to be less than an inch per hour.
Forecasters are expecting it to warm up to 35F Wednesday, Jan. 3, but a winter storm may bring up to 6 inches of snow overnight into Thursday, Jan. 4. A winter storm watch is in effect from 7 p.m., Wednesday, Jan. 3, through 5 p.m., Thursday, Jan. 4.
A winter storm watch is an alert that the National Weather Service has medium confidence that a storm could produce heavy snow, sleet or freezing rain and cause significant impacts. A winter storm warning is issued when there is high confidence snow, sleet or freezing rain is expected.
The cold spell is expected to extend beyond the storm, as the NWS expects Friday and Saturday temperatures to be no higher than 20 degrees.
Cold-weather shelters are open statewide following a Cold Purple alert, which is issued when overnight temperatures are expected to dip below 32 degrees. The Immanuel Shelter in Rehoboth is the only Code Purple shelter in eastern Sussex County, opening nightly from early December through spring. For more information, go to immanuelshelter.org or call 888-634-9992.