As frigid air holds in the East, a new storm will spread an area of snow, ice and travel disruptions across the interior South late this weekend into early next week.
Much of the South has avoided wintry travel thus far this winter. However, as a storm develops and tracks eastward, a swath of snow and ice will grow on its cold northern flank with rain and thunder close to the Gulf coast Sunday into Monday.
The storm has the potential to bring slippery roads, disruptions to daily activities and perhaps airline delays and cancellations.
An area of snow will generally develop in eastern Kansas to central and southern Missouri on Sunday with an area of ice or a wintry mix from central Oklahoma to much of Arkansas and neighboring parts of Texas and Louisiana.
Travel along the Interstate 40 and I-70 corridors could become slippery and dangerous during Sunday into Sunday night. Cities likely to be impact by wintry precipitation during at least part of the day on Sunday include Oklahoma City, Kansas City, Missouri, and Little Rock, Arkansas.
During Sunday night into Monday, snow will spread eastward to the southern Appalachians along the I-40 and I-64 corridors. Cities from St. Louis to Nashville, London, Kentucky, and Roanoke, Virginia, could receive some accumulating snow.
Ice or a wintry mix will push eastward along the zone from I-20 to I-40 Sunday night into Monday. Cities from Memphis and Chattanooga, Tennessee, to Tupelo, Mississippi; Birmingham and Huntsville, Alabama; Atlanta; Charlotte and Winston-Salem, North Carolina, and Greenville, South Carolina, could be on the receiving end of some sleet and freezing rain.
From Monday night through midweek, the path of the storm, its strength and the intensity of the precipitation are uncertain at this early stage.
Whether or not the storm turns toward the coastal Northeast will depend on how quickly additional arctic air spills southward and how much the storm strengthens while moving across the South.
Should the storm remain weak with more cold air rushing in, the storm would tend to track more offshore over the Atlantic Ocean. This more eastward track would prevent a major snowfall and disruptions in the Northeast during Tuesday into Wednesday.
Should the storm strengthen with the next wave of cold air holding back, the storm could take a path up along the Atlantic coast. In this scenario, a swath of accumulating snow or a heavy wintry mix could spread northeastward along the I-95 corridor.
AccuWeather.com will continue to provide updates on this storm and others through the weekend.
Regardless of the path of the storm drenching downpours and perhaps locally heavy thunderstorms will expand eastward along the I-10 corridor. Rain could impact Mardi Gras festivities in New Orleans.