At least 6-8 inches of snow will fall between Wednesday night and Thursday, the National Weather Service said in a briefing issued Tuesday night. A separate forecast map called for a “worst case scenario” of more than 9 inches of snow to fall.
A winter storm watch has been issued for Ocean County from 12 a.m. to 7 p.m. Thursday. According to the NWS forecast, a wintry mix will change to snow after 1 a.m. Thursday morning, with 1-3 inches falling overnight. During the day Thursday, another 3-5 inches will fall. Wednesday night’s low will be 25 degrees and Thursday’s high will be 31 degrees.
The forecast was issued as snow changed to sleet and rain across Ocean County. Overnight Tuesday into the Wednesday, more warm air will move in and any precipitation will fall as rain. But cold air will begin to filter in Wednesday night, changing precipitation back to snow.
“As colder air filters back into the region Wednesday night, precipitation will change back over to snow from north to south,” the briefing said. “The Wednesday evening and especially the Thursday morning commute will be affected.”
Though it will seem as if one storm will last from Tuesday night through Thursday, it is actually several weather systems that will move through in succession. The National Weather Service called it a “complex and prolonged period of precipitation.”