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Lake-effect snow to create dangerous travel for several days near Great Lakes

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As arctic air returns to the midwestern and northeastern United States, a new round of lake-effect snow will be unleashed from Michigan to New York state during the middle and latter parts of this week.

In some areas, the lake-effect snow event will last into Friday night.

As is often the case with lake-effect snow, road conditions and visibility will vary greatly. In less than a mile, the visibility can vary from clear to whiteout conditions.

Static LE Impacts

Where lake-effect snow persists through Friday night, accumulations between 1 and 2 feet are in store for some communities.

The first few hours of the cold air invasion may be the trickiest for motorists along Interstate 75, I-80, I-81, I-90, I-96 and I-196.

Snow showers may melt on the roads at first. However, as colder air settles in, roads can quickly become slushy, snow-covered and icy.

"Bands of heavy snow will develop southeast of lakes Superior and Michigan during Tuesday night," according to AccuWeather Meteorologist Steve Travis. "The bands of heavy snow will then also develop farther to the east off lakes Huron, Erie and Ontario during Wednesday."

In the Appalachians, from south-central Pennsylvania to West Virginia, the Virginia Panhandle and northeastern Tennessee, rain will end as a period of accumulating snow as the colder air arrives on Wednesday.

Static P-lang. Wed. NE

Portions of I-77 and I-79 could get slippery.

From Thursday to Friday, the bands of snow will set up in a more west-to-east fashion due to winds from the west and west-southwest, Travis said.

As the flow of air becomes more westerly, the bands of heavy lake-effect snow will set up north of Interstate 80 in Pennsylvania during Thursday.

"For a time on Thursday, the heaviest bands of snow will develop in Erie County, New York, and will blanket the towns just south of the city of Buffalo," Travis said. "A band of heavy snow will set up off Lake Ontario and will clobber areas near Watertown to the Tug Hill Plateau of New York from Wednesday night to Friday evening."

Lake-effect snow showers are not likely to reach areas along the I-95 corridor during this episode.

However, snow from a different source could occur in this zone. This chance of snow will be from a weak storm system moving up from the Southern states.