A pre-Thanksgiving storm that may bring severe thunderstorms, gusty winds, heavy rain and snow as it tracks from the central to the eastern United States early this week could disrupt holiday travel, forecasters said.
“A vigorous upper-level trough” that is moving over the western United States will send a wave of “inclement weather rapidly from west to east” over the next couple of days, the National Weather Service Prediction Center in Maryland said on Sunday.
As the system moves toward the Lower Mississippi Valley, there may be an enhanced risk of severe weather that could bring damaging winds, large hail and tornadoes, the Weather Service said.
By Tuesday, there will be a chance for widespread showers and thunderstorms for the Midwest, Ohio Valley and Tennessee Valley before heading into the Northeast.
Gov. Kathy Hochul of New York urged caution ahead of Thanksgiving as “extreme winter weather” was expected to affect holiday travel plans across Western New York and the North Country.
“We are preparing for the worst-case scenario and warning motorists and homeowners and people now who will be traveling locally and outside the region to alter your travel plans,” she said on Friday.
She cautioned travelers against making Wednesday their main travel day.
“You’ll be either stuck at home not able to travel, or worst case there, you could be stuck on one of the roads or the New York State Thruway,” she said.
The Weather Service office in Upton, N.Y., said on Sunday that the system would bring rain and wind but that snow was not in its forecast.
“Thanksgiving will be mostly sunny with highs in the mid-40s,’’ the office said.
High temperatures on Monday and Tuesday will remain below average from southern New England into the Mid-Atlantic, with temperatures in the 30s and 40s for New England and 50s into the Mid-Atlantic, the Weather Service said.
The Weather Service in Boston warned on Sunday of the potential for “some front end high-elevation snow” starting Tuesday evening and Wednesday for southern New England but added that “quiet and cooler weather” was expected for Thanksgiving and into the holiday weekend.