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December 22, 2012

Officials: White Christmas likely

By Mark Boshnack
The Daily Star

---- — Winter weather that hit the area Friday could be the harbinger of a white Christmas, a Binghamton meteorologist said.

A local weather observer agreed.

The storm that brought a foot of snow to some parts of the Midwest on Thursday, brought rain, snow and strong winds to this area starting about midnight  Friday, according to Joanne LaBounty of the National Weather Service in Binghamton. 

When the rains changed over to snow before 8 a.m., emergency service dispatchers said the conditions resulted in numerous motor vehicle accidents around the area. No serious injuries were reported. 

The storm brought scattered power outages, with New York State Electric & Gas reporting about 150 customers in Delaware County were without service Friday afternoon. About 131 were affected in Chenango County. Spokeswoman Ann Carnike said service was expected to be restored Friday evening. 

LaBounty said the storm front came through with strong winds, with gusts up to 50 mph, from the southeast. 

Wrap-around moisture will bring snow back to the area Saturday, as the low pressure system leaves the area. Most areas should receive 2 to 4 inches of snow. Areas with lake-effect conditions and those at higher elevations should see 4 to 6 inches, according to the NWS forecast. A winter weather advisory is in effect in Otsego County and portions of the western Catskills through 10 p.m. Saturday, according to the NWS. 

With a chance of snow through Monday night, it is possible Christmas will be white, LaBounty said.

“We will have to see,” she said. 

National Weather Service observer David Mattice of Emmons, said Friday evening that, with the ground being so warm, most of the snow  is not sticking. But with temperatures for the next few days at or below freezing, the new snowfall could start to stick, increasing the chances of a white Christmas.