Fox News Weather Center

Potentially potent storm to unleash snow, severe storms over central US next week

A storm is likely to form, strengthen and bring a wide range of disruptive and potentially dangerous weather over the central United States during the first few days of March.

The impacts will include the potential for a major snowstorm, perhaps blizzard conditions, soaking rain as well as another round of severe weather.

How strong the storm gets will determine whether blizzard conditions develop over portions of the Plains and Upper Midwest during the middle of next week.

Definition of a blizzard

"The track of the storm will determine where the dividing line between rain and snow sets up," according to AccuWeather Chief Meteorologist Elliot Abrams. "There is no way to say precisely where that will be this far out."

The zone from Kansas City, Missouri, to Chicago and Detroit could be near the boundary where snow, sleet and rain are possible.

The storm will travel in such a way as to pull a significant amount of warm, moist air from the Gulf of Mexico, which will be squeezed out farther north, where the air is colder.

"A storm of this nature has the potential to deliver 1-2 inches of rain," Abrams said. "Where that falls as snow there could be 1-2 feet."

The storm track will also determine the northern and western extent of snow in the colder air.

As an example, during the snowstorm on Wednesday around Chicago, a distance of less than 35 miles resulted in the difference between wet roads and non-accumulating snow to more than a foot of accumulation and snow-covered roads.

"The storm is likely to deposit some snow on Colorado, including the Denver area, before swinging out onto the Plains," AccuWeather Senior Meteorologist Brett Anderson said.

While there are uncertainties with the amount of rain and snow and the dividing line thereof, there is likely to be severe weather spawned by the storm in portions of the South Central states.

The last two storms to affect the South and Atlantic coast have produced severe weather. The most recent storm caused a number of injuries and fatalities.

Regardless of whether the storm track shifts northward or drifts eastward, there will also be the potential for rain and thunderstorms reaching parts of the Eastern states during the middle of next week.

AccuWeather will continue to provide updates on the storm in the coming days as more details become clear.