Snow and sleet on the way

The snowstorn expected to arrive early Thursday morning — now, less than 24 hours away — should bring mostly snow as well as rain and sleet to southwestern Connecticut.

The National Weather Service (NWS) on Tuesday morning upgraded its advisory to a Winter Storm Warning for Fairfield County, in effect from midnight tonight to 6 a.m. Friday.

Inland areas of southern Connecticut should get 8 to 12 inches of snow while areas closer to the coast should receive 6 to 10 inches.

Temperatures to rise, then drop

The amount of accumulation is largely dependent on when the change-over to rain occurs. Temperatures will rise with the arrival of the storm and, in Trumbull, likely get above freezing in the late morning Thursday before dipping back below freezing on Thursday night.

The heaviest snow should be on Thursday morning. Snow could linger into Friday morning, although it should be lighter by then.

Temperatures should be in the upper 20s when the storm arrives, rising into the low 30s on Thursday afternoon.

Classic nor’easter

The nor’easter heading up the coast and expected to impact the southeastern United States on its way — including Atlanta, which was paralyzed by about 2 inches of snow a few weeks ago. Icing should be a major concern in the Southeast.

It is a slow moving storm, which is while the Winter Storm Warning for southwestern Connecticut will be in effect for 18 hours.

Highest amounts in Litchfield County

In Connecticut, the storm could drop more than a foot of snow in northwestern Connecticut, where it could remain all snow. Forecasters say snow could fall at the rate of 1 to 2 inches an hour in Litchfield County.

As with most nor’easters, southeastern Connecticut (near New London) is likely to get the least snow. Areas such as Shelton should pick up considerable amounts of snow, with totals increasing the longer that temperatures remain below freezing.

High winds and coastal flooding

In Fairfield County, the storm will bring strong, sustained winds of up to 25 mph, plus gusts to 35 mph. The strongest winds will be near the coast.

The NWS also has issued a Coastal Flood Statement, indicating that “minor coastal flooding” is possible late Thursday due to high winds and elevated tides.