WASHINGTON -- A strong storm that hit the eastern half of the country Thursday morning is expected to make its way into the Northeast, spreading heavy rain and flooding along the East Coast and snow and ice inland. Flooding may and icy conditions will continue across the South, where five people have been killed recently in weather-related incidents.
Thursday morning: Rain and snow moves into the mid-Atlantic, while snow continues to linger in the Midwest.
Thursday afternoon: Rain, snow, and ice move into the Northeast, with snow becoming heavy across the interior.
Thursday night: Heavy snow moves into upstate New York and New England while a mix of rain and snow quickly transitions to rain closer to the coast.
Friday: Snow lingers across northern New England into the afternoon.
Around 88 million people are under winter weather watches, warnings and advisories that extend over a wide area from Missouri to Maine.
St. Louis is under a winter storm warning because 2-6 inches of snow has fallen and will continue through this morning.
Ice storm warnings are posted for parts of Indiana and Ohio, including Indianapolis and Dayton, where up to a quarter inch of ice is already causing widespread power outages.
Heavy ice accumulations are forecast over parts of West Virginia, western Virginia and western Maryland.
The heaviest snow will likely pile up from the central Appalachians into New England, where over 6 inches is expected. A heavy pocket of 4-6 inches is also possible around the St. Louis area, making it their biggest November snowfall in decades.
Snow amounts in major metro areas
Precipitation will likely start as snow in major metro areas before changing over to rain. Here's what to expect:
Boston: 1-3 inches starting as snow Thursday evening, changing to rain overnight, with rain lingering into Friday morning.
New York City: 1 inch of snow beginning late Thursday morning, becoming a wintery mix in the afternoon before changing to all rain. Heavier snow of 1-3 inches in New Jersey up the Hudson Valley.
Philadelphia: 1 inch or less of snow Thursday morning, mixing to rain and sleet around noon, and all rain late afternoon and Thursday night.
Washington: A half inch or less of wintery mix on Thursday, changing to rain with little accumulation.
Flooding continues in the South
The Northeast metros will escape the heavy snow, but will be left with a miserable mix of rain and snow, changing to all rain as the temperatures warm slightly into the mid and upper 30s.
Over 34 million are under flood or flash flood watches in the South, including cities like Atlanta, Charlotte, Raleigh, Norfolk and Richmond.
Icy conditions are responsible for the deaths of at least five people, according to state highway patrols.
Two people were killed in Desoto County, Mississippi, Wednesday afternoon after their tour bus crashed, said Sgt. Joseph Miller with the Mississippi Highway Patrol. The bus carrying 46 people was traveling from Huntsville, Alabama, to Tunica, Mississippi.
The remaining occupants were taken to area hospitals with a variety of injuries. The cause of the crash was weather related, Miller stated.
Arkansas Highway Patrol is reporting two separate incidents in which three people were killed after drivers lost control of cars on icy roads.