A powerful winter storm that has already wreaked havoc on upstate New York could bring a sloppy wintry mix to the five boroughs on Friday afternoon.
The National Weather Service has placed New York City under a winter weather advisory through 7 p.m., warning of “sneaky” hazards, including icy roads, that can make travel difficult.
As a cold front moves across the region, temperatures in the metro area are expected to drop, turning excess rain or standing water into ice. The National Weather Service also warned of possible flooding in the region due to snowmelt, rain and blocked storm drains.
“We are expecting fast-changing conditions on Friday, as temperatures drop rapidly,” Sanitation Commissioner Edward Grayson said in a statement.
The NYC Office of Emergency Management has also warned that the storm could affect evening commutes and encouraged residents to use mass transit, rather than driving.
At a storm briefing on Friday morning, Governor Kathy Hochul said the powerful storm – which stretched from Texas to New England – had dropped up to 18 inches of snow around the Finger Lakes. Several upstate counties were facing up to half an inch of ice accumulation.
“Our biggest concern right now is ice on the roads,” Hochul said. “When the first weather event is rain, it washes the salt off the roads.”’
Nearly 50,000 households across the state were without power, primarily in the Hudson Valley region, Hochul said. Over 500 utility workers have been dispatched to deal with the outages, though Ulster County Commissioner Pat Ryan said it would take time to get the lights back on.
“We do believe the concentration of weather activity will abate by this evening,” Hochul said. “Until then, it’s going to be literally a day full of freezing rain coming down.”