We have a pretty good fix on December’s weather, which has been unusually warm, and long-range forecasters say conditions also favor temperatures above the norm for the January through March period.
There’s a 40 percent to 50 percent chance for January, February and March to have higher-than-normal temperatures in much of the Northeast, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Climate Prediction Center.
For Long Island, the average monthly temperature for January is 30.6 degrees, with 34.2 degrees the average for that three-month period.WeatherLatest forecastDataMonthly snowfall totals 1947-2015
Still, “a milder winter does not mean we can’t get a big snowstorm” or two, as the key ingredients can come together in just a few days, said Brett Anderson, senior meteorologist with Accuweather.com.
Should any materialize, “the odds are that snow would not stick around too long,” as “sustained cold outbreaks” are not expected, at least not for January.
February could be another story, he said, when there appears to be more of a chance for sustained cold, as weather patterns shift.
A shorter-term look to the coming week brings a shift back to seasonal temperatures after a string of record-breaking highs. Saturday is expected to have highs of 40 to 43 degrees, with Sunday highs near 45, said Rich Hoffman, News 12 Long Island meteorologist.
Then comes a spike back up again, with possible record-breaking temperatures for Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, he said.